FEB. 8, 2020
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Nobody Told Me

By Jonathan Clements

I HAVE DEVOTED my entire adult life to learning about money. That might sound like cruel-and-unusual punishment, but I’ve mostly enjoyed it. For more than three decades, I’ve spent my days perusing the business pages, reading finance books, scanning academic studies and talking to countless folks about their finances.

Yet, despite this intense financial education, it took me a decade or more to learn many of life’s most important money lessons and, indeed, some key insights have only come to me in recent years. Here are 10 things I wish I’d been told in my 20s—or told more loudly, so I actually listened:

1. A small home is the key to a big portfolio. My first wife and I bought a modest house, because we worried that we couldn’t really afford anything bigger. I ended up living in that house for two decades.

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Latest Articles

BELOW ARE the six articles published by HumbleDollar since last week's newsletter:
  • "Traditionally, retirement was a 30-year period following a 40-year working career," notes Robert Lindstrom. "But what if you were able to redistribute some of those 30 years?"
  • What captured the interest of HumbleDollar’s readers last month? Check out January’s seven most popular articles.
  • For 35 years, Dennis Friedman lived in a one-bedroom, 789-square-foot condominium. He reaped nine crucial financial benefits.
  • Is gold an unproductive asset with terrible long-term performance—or a great way to diversify a portfolio? Sanjib Saha wrestles with the question.
  • It's been more than three decades since the Japanese stock market hit an all-time high. The extraordinary market carnage holds five key lessons for investors, says John Lim.
  • Got a portfolio in need of a makeover? Adam Grossman shows you how to get it done—using a four-step process.
This week, we also launched HumbleDollar's revamped homepage. It now includes a section called "Second Look" that highlights earlier articles that readers might have missed.
This newsletter, a product of Jonathan Clements LLC, contains the opinions and ideas of its author. It is distributed with the understanding that the author is not engaged in rendering legal, financial or other professional services. If a reader requires expert assistance or legal advice, a competent professional should be consulted. While the author has endeavored to ensure that this newsletter is timely and accurate, the author makes no representations or warranties with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the contents. The author specifically disclaims any responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, which is incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, of the use and application of any of the contents of this newsletter.
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