How ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ Changed the Mindset of Successful Investors: A Review

  • Real estate investors and early retirees say “rich dad poor dad” has changed their minds about money.
  • This book explores timeless money lessons, including the importance of making money work for you.
  • Michael Zuber, a real estate investor and early-retiree, says he’s read it more than 10 times.

After losing almost all of his savings in day-trading stocks, Michael Zuber decided to explore other ways to invest.

He went to a bookstore looking for investment books and was attracted by the only purple book on the shelf: Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki. “I grabbed it and ended up reading it over and over, 10 to 15 times, just because it was so different from anything I’d read before,” he told Insider.

Originally published in 1997, Kiyosaki’s bestseller is considered one of the greatest personal finance books of all time. The author grew up with two father figures: “Poor Dad,” his biological father who died trying to pay the bills, and “Rich Dad,” who started his own life before becoming rich. Both fathers were successful in their careers and earned substantial incomes, but one of them always struggled financially.

Kiyosaki noticed fundamental differences in the way “rich dad” and “poor dad” thought, spoke, and acted. In his book, he offers the timeless lessons he learned from “rich dad” that will help you master your money and build long-term wealth.

He said the book introduced Zuber to the concept of “money makes money”. “I’ve never really talked about how money works and how the rich get richer by owning assets.”

One of Kiyosaki’s main points is that the richest people focus on building assets — the things they put money in their pockets — while others focus on their monthly income and salaries. “The long-term rich build their asset column first,” Kiyosaki wrote. “Then the income generated by the asset column buys their luxuries. The poor and the middle class buy luxuries with their sweat, blood and children’s inheritance.”

A couple in sunglasses taking a selfie in front of the Golden Gate Bridge

Michael and Olivia Zuber retired in their 40s thanks to savvy real estate investing.

Courtesy of Michael and Olivia Zuber


With this in mind, Zuber and his wife decided to try real estate investing and build their wealth by buying homes and renting them out. Living beyond their means, they saved enough to buy a rental property in Fresno, California, and started earning passive income.

Over the next two decades, they continued to buy properties, eventually starting to earn enough passive income to feel comfortable quitting their day jobs in their 40s. Today, the couple owns more than 100 apartments in Fresno, Calif., and earns more than $100,0000 a month in rental income, according to portfolio summaries reviewed by Insider.

Zuber, 49, isn’t the only real estate investor to draw inspiration from Kiyosaki’s principles. Boston-based investor Karina Mejia told Insider that “Rich Dad Poor Dad” completely changed her mindset and encouraged her to quit her 9-to-5 job and pursue a career as a real estate agent.

At 22, she decided to quit her salary analyst job and try to work for herself. It’s a big decision, one she probably wouldn’t have thought of if she hadn’t spent so much time reading podcasts and books, including Kiyosaki’s.

“‘It is not the wise who succeed, but the daring,” wrote Kiyosaki, who believed in smart adventurousness. Blind risk won’t get you anywhere, but intelligent risk, in which your self-education plays a role, often pays off.

“I remember my thought process when I read it, and I thought, ‘I don’t want to live like everyone else. I want to create a different life,'” said Mega, now 25.

She took a calculated risk when she decided to drop the 9-to-5 bet and bet on herself. She already has the real estate license she got in college and even closed a few deals, so she knows a career as a broker can be lucrative.

She’s right: In 2021, she’s making more than $350,000 in commission and rental income. That’s more than five times what she earns as an analyst. Insider reviewed the sales commission report and her former employer’s W-2 form, which showed these details.

Seattle-based real estate investor Peter Keane Rivera bought his first home at age 25 and planned to achieve financial freedom through real estate investing when he first read this When he was reading, he couldn’t put it down. “I did it in three days,” he told Insider. It reassured him about his financial situation. “I stopped really worrying about my financial future. I realized I didn’t have to get that high-paying job or be the smartest person in the room. I just needed to earn passive income by renting out properties and I knew I’d do it. “

Kiyosaki emphasizes that the rich and the average person choose to be paid differently: the average person chooses to be paid based on time—either a steady wage or an hourly rate—while the rich often own their own businesses or work on commission and find a way to get paid. The way their money works for them. They’re not limited to company-mandated salaries; their earning potential is entirely up to them.

“If you work for money, you hand over power to your employer,” Kiyosaki wrote. “If money works for you, you can keep it and control it.”

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