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Timothy Sykes: 3 things to know before you get rich

Self-made millionaire Timothy Sykes talks about three things he wishes he knew before becoming a millionaire.

This ride may look sweet, but owning a Lamborghini has a downside, too. Credit: Provided This ride may look sweet, but owning a Lamborghini has a downside, too.
Credit: Provided

I became a millionaire nearly 15 years ago, but I never really splurged on anything fancy until recently when I started teaching. Now that I teach people how to trade successfully in the stock market, I learned that showing off a little, or a lot, inspires students to work harder on their studies so I take pride in my humble brags. But I wish I’d known these three things before I got rich and splurged.

Lesson #1: Lamborghinis are a pain in the butt

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I have a bright orange 2013 Lamborghini that costs nearly $250,000, but while I was driving my friend’s Jeep Cherokee a few weeks ago, as my Lamborghini was in the shop, as it often is for one reason or another, I wished I could switch cars. Sure, sure, everyone stares and takes pictures of my car and it’s the best tool for inspiring students, but it’s also annoying!

When I go out in Miami, instead of paying $15-20 for valet, I have to pay $80-100 to park it out front everywhere for easier access. One corrupt South Beach hotel even tried making me pay $300 for valet for just 30 minutes as they figured “You have a Lamborghini you can afford it.” Just because I’m rich doesn’t mean I’m going to throw away money.

Don’t get me started about miles-per-gallon, the $3,000 it costs to replace a side view mirror (after I left my friend borrow it), the worst is that taking road trips in a Lamborghini will make your back ache for a week!

Lesson #2: The bigger the mansion the more problems

A few years ago when I moved down to Miami, I had my heart set on a giant mansion right on the water and I got my wish with a 7,000+ square foot monstrosity. It’s beautiful, it looked great on video when I filmed my MTV Cribs video and I have tons of room for friends, students and family, but every day I had it there was a new problem.

I was in Japan when I got an urgent phone call saying the air conditioning coil broke and my living room was flooded. Living on the water also sounds great, but the Miami salt water decimated my jetskis, not to mention all the outdoor furniture I bought!

When you add in the insect issues, electrical problems, security costs and other issues problems that required a house manager for a while (until he quit due to all the issues), having a big mansion is just not worth it.

Lesson #3: Talking about your money is taboo

Because I’m a stock trader and I don’t create any actual products other than my educational DVDs, I talk about the money I’ve made every day since it’s basically my batting average. But polite society, and thousands of people I’ve encountered over the years, say it’s bad to talk the way I do.

Why? I understand so many in this world have so little, but I only bring up my wealth because I teach the exact methods I used to acquire so much money in the first place!

I guess I’m a pretty bad rich guy, I appreciate every dollar I’ve made (truly), but I refuse to stick to the status quo when I know my teachings can help people and the best way to get the word out is to show off my money and the lifestyle it can buy.

I can correct my mistakes – I’ll ditch my Lamborghini soon and I’ve already gotten rid of the mansion in favor of something more manageable and modern, but it’s time more successful people talked like this as I wish somebody had told me all of this before I got rich!

Things I Liked:

1. Elon Musk continues to amaze with the new Tesla D self-driving features and his Solar City’s new loan programs to encourage more solar power usage.

2. Slower growth expectations have hurt stock markets worldwide, but lessening the mania behind this multi-year bull market is healthy.

3. The U.S. stock markets have begun to fade, as is typical every October, I warned about this in my column two weeks ago and thousands of people have thanked me for my warning…you’re welcome!

Up:

At just 17 years old, Malala Yousafzai is the youngest ever recipient for the Nobel Peace Prize for her work promoting women’s right to education…awe inspiring!

Down:

Ebola is spreading with potential new cases every day; we MUST be extremely over-protective to ensure public safety.

For more financial advice, visit timothysykes.com.

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