JW’s Financial Coaching Podcast Lesson #81-Breaking down the Latte Factor

  • What the Latte Factor metaphor is
  • Popularized by David Bach’s book Automatic Millionaire
  • What you can do instead of the Latte Factor
  • What are you doing with your extra money from lower gas prices?
  • Quote of the week

The JW’s Financial Coaching Podcast_81

I love to read. I especially love to read books on personal finance. It doesn’t matter who is the author. Lately I’ve read a few books from Ramit Sethi (I Will Teach You to Be Rich) and Zac Bissonnette (How to Be Richer, Smarter, and Better Looking Than Your Parents) that mentioned the Latte Factor. In reading other books over the years I’ve heard a lot about the Latte Factor, both good and bad but never fully checked it out for myself until recently.

For those of you who don’t know, The Latte Factor is a metaphor created by personal finance author David Bach and is predominately featured in his book The Automatic Millionaire (You can download a free audio copy at Audible.com). The Latte Factor is a metaphor on investing which shows how the everyday small expenses can cost you thousands or even millions over time.

The concept is simple; take that “small” daily habit that you spend money on whether it is your daily latte, fast food trip, pack of cigarettes, etc. If you took that amount and instead invested it, it would grow.  Below is an example from the book on how much money you would invest if you cut out the $3.50 out of your daily spending or $5.00:

LatteFactor1As you can see, after a decade you would have a good chunk of money, but not life changing money. But look at what happens if you invested that amount each month earning an average of 10% a year:

LatteFactor3With that being said, on today’s show I share the pros and cons of the Latte Factor metaphor. Overall I think it is a great metaphor and anything that motivates people to start to get into investing I’m all for. But I also like focusing on the bigger stuff instead of having to scrimp and cut out a lot of smaller things in your budget. So what instead if we did, not the Latte Factor, but the Car Payment Factor?

The average car payment today is $470. Below is what would happen if you invested the average car payment, or half of the average payment:

LatteFactor2That is an expensive car payment! We cover all of these topics and more on today’s lesson. But what are your thoughts on the Latte Factor? Have you given up small daily pleasures for bigger gains? What have the results been?

This lesson’s quote is brought to you by the JW’s Financial Coaching Newsletter and comes to us from Albert Einstein:

“The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax.”

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