news and articles from our team

Rosie Millard

July 26, 2017 16:46
Rosie Millard

Rosie Millard

April 12th 2005

I don’t know if you followed the story in most of the papers last week about Rosie Millard – she’s a landlady who writes a regular column in the Times about her investing life. She owns, apparently, her own house and three buy-to-let properties, and a week or so ago she admitted to having debt on interest free credit cards.

Well, that simple admission has opened up a huge attack from other journalists and the concerned or outraged reader from every corner of the country. Rosie wrote her defence in the Sunday Times and some of the things she says are worth repeating:

  • She has been attacked for being in debt (or perceived debt) at the same time as being wealthy – it seems that the two possibilities are both immoral and ‘not normal’ in some way. How bizarre – why is it that the majority of our populace insists on being stuck in that ‘middle lane’ of life? – and they don’t want to be, nor do they want others to be, anywhere else, or in either extreme of poverty or wealth (if they chose)
  • Rosie has learned, as I say every time I speak, that the possibility of wealth, or even the discussion of it, is “a thing not done in polite society”. For as long as people believe that wealth is a horror to be avoided, we will NEVER be a wealthy nation
  • There is such a thing as good debt and bad debt – and it is fundamental to understand the difference. All the major wealth players in our society, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Richard Branson, and certainly Donald Trump, have had times in their lives where they have been up to their eyebrows in debt- and quite rightly so, because the understanding and management of debt is one of the top principles of wealth creation.

Rosie has been attacked, ridiculed, and vilified for daring to move out of the mediocrity of normal financial life in an attempt to provide for herself and her family, now and for the future. She has sadly been the recipient of all the nation’s negative and poor beliefs about money and wealth, which unfortunately are as silly, uninformed, restrictive, and financially inhibiting as ever they were. It reminds me that we still have such a long way to go.

I don’t know Rosie, have never met her and I don’t even normally read her column, but all I can say is “good luck to you, and keep at it”.

Life's Wages

July 21, 2017 15:18
Life's Wages

Life's Wages

January 3rd 2005

As we start a new year of wealth creation, I am reminded about ‘Think and Grow Rich’, which was, and still is, one of the most powerful books written about wealth creation. In it there is a poem which I will include in full:

“I bargained with Life for a penny,
And Life would pay no more,
However I begged at evening
When I counted my scanty score.

For Life is just an employer,
He gives you what you ask,
But once you have set the wages,
Why, you must bear the task.

I worked for a menial’s hire,
Only to learn dismayed,
That any wage I had asked of Life,
Life would have willingly paid.”

This always has a profound effect on me and I hope it has stirred something for you too- because we are limited only by our own beliefs of what we are worth. If you are working for a ‘menial’s hire’, ask yourself why and consider setting your worth a lot higher.

If you are the type of person that sets financial new years resolutions, then please just increase your worth, or your charges, or your fees, to a much higher level- just for me- and concentrate on how you will achieve it and not on whether you will achieve it at all.

The Tax Year

June 12, 2017 09:31
The Tax Year

The Tax Year Endeth

April 5th 2005

I love the Inland Revenue and the concept of a tax year which is different to a universally accepted calendar – only in the UK could we have such a bizarre and eccentric concept where the tax year ends on 5th April. But this is how that happened:

In the 12th century the governments of the day discovered that a year was 365 days in length and they decided in their wisdom that a year should start on the 23th March. The only logic to this was that if Jesus was born on the 25th December, then Mary must have gotten pregnant on the 25th March. This worked very well until 1750 when it was decided to bring calendars into line with the Gregorian calendar which was more accurate. Gregory was the Pope at the time and he had already introduced this calendar into catholic countries.

So it was decided to change over the calendar during 1752, and that the New Year would start on the 1st January 1753. However there was a public outcry claiming that 11 days had been lost (the government had effectively done away with September 2nd – September 14th 1752, so that they could even things up a bit). So in order to counteract this public opinion (perhaps there was a general election looming?) the government said, well OK, we’ll compromise and so for this year only we’ll add the 11 days back on so that the year won’t end on March 25th as usual – but it will end on 5th April: being March 25th plus 11 days.

This ‘one year’ only practice continued for a couple of hundred years or so until 1970 when the official year end was confirmed at last by statute (The Income and Corporation Taxes Act) – unfortunately the year end was confirmed not as 31st December, but – you guessed it – 5th April.

Are the British Really Eccentric?

May 30, 2017 09:09
Are the British Really Eccentric?

Are the British Really Eccentric?

8th April 2005

Lloyds Bank published some information last week that proves that British eccentricity isn’t dead. It was a list of reasons that people put on credit card applications for why they need the money. Now the standard ones are there: the cars, home improvements, and holidays – but we also have requests for:

  • - £15,000 for a camel
  • - £5,000 for a suit of armour
  • - £20,000 to convert a cave into a house
  • - Money for breast enlargements
  • - Cash to get teeth done before the wedding
  • - £1,000 for a sheep
  • - £7,000 for a houseboat
  • - A loan to enter an auction to have a date with a footballer
  • - Money to build a Robot Wars machine


  • - £10,000 to buy a black stallion like the one in the ads!


Have a great weekend.

Do you want £33m or £50m?

May 18, 2017 13:56
Do you want £33m or £50m?


Do you want £33m or £50m?

January 13th 2005

As we start the year I am intrigued to read that Elton John earned £33 million last year. If you think about it that’s pretty impressive- I mean if we assume that he works a 40-hour work week and has 5 weeks’ holiday to gallivant with David, and Cliff, Liz and Posh and the like, he earns £17,553 per hour – that’s not far off the national salary for each and every hour.

OR, even if we say that he works every hour of every day for a whole year that still equates to a staggering £3,767 per hour.

But of course, he doesn’t work anywhere near that number of hours, and we all understand that what Elton John has is the most amazing massive passive income stream. In fact, I suspect he does less and less these days and yet I bet his income keeps on rising because he has learned the trick of maximising the income on everything he does, and his ‘working’ time is spent purely on fuelling the fire of constant income with the occasional person appearance on Parkinson and the odd tour.

Impressive, isn’t it?

But what is even more impressive is that Elton John’s income last year was topped by a couple of people, one of whom, Elvis, has been dead for nearly 30 years. Apparently, the Presley estate made £50million last year, and Elvis’ income has risen every year since he died: now that truly is passive income.

And that can give us a great guide- when we establish our income streams we can set Elvis as a standard because if we can establish a stream of income that not only continues when we are asleep, or on holiday, but also continues (and continues to increase) after our death – then we really have mastered the passive income concept.

BUT if you do manage that, make sure you have your Inheritance Tax sorted out before you go!


Recent posts

The Seven Investing Sins

Are you making these seven investing sins? Read More

The Dogs have Doubled

A £10,000 investment from March 2012 would today be valued at £21,292... Read More

Harry Potter and Bloomsbury

Harry Potter is still celebrated worldwide, especially on July 31st- the birthday of the boy wizard. But is there as much magic when it comes to investing in the books’ publishing company, Bloomsbury? Read More

Rosie Millard

Rosie Millard owns, apparently, her own house and three buy-to-let properties, and a week or so ago she admitted to having debt on interest free credit cards... Read More

Life's Wages

I am reminded about ‘Think and Grow Rich’... Read More