My 5 Worst Money Mistakes

My 5 Worst Money Mistakes

Making money mistakes is a part of life, but learning from them sets successful people apart. Throughout my journey, I’ve made my fair share of financial mistakes that have taught me valuable lessons.

In this post, I’ll share my five worst money mistakes and the insights I’ve gained from them. By discussing these experiences openly, I hope to help others avoid similar pitfalls and make better financial decisions.

5 Worst Money Mistakes To Avoid

Here are the five worst money mistakes I made in my life that you should avoid:

  1. Marrying the wrong person: I married the wrong person when I was 18 years old, and it set me back a decade in my finances from where I could have been. You want to marry the right person who is an asset to your life in all areas, not a liability.
  2. Giving up too much in a divorce: I was too generous in my first divorce for the sake of my children, and it was a mistake as my financial sacrifices did not go to them; it went to my ex-wife to squander. In a divorce, you are no longer on the same team, fight to win for yourself, and then take care of your children with your money directly.
  3. Don’t buy a brand-new car: New car payments drain your finances with depreciation and repeating debt payments. I made this mistake as a teenager into my early twenties, and my finances would have been much easier without the car payments and high insurance. They are the wealth killer few people talk about.
  4. Avoid high-interest credit card debt: My first wife got us into this trap by spending more than we made. It is challenging to escape from an accelerating balance once trapped in it. This is the opposite of wealth creation. You become the bank’s cash-flowing asset.
  5. Don’t stay loyal to your job: I stayed too long in a job in my twenties. I missed better career opportunities. Only stay loyal to your employer if they pay you more than you can make elsewhere and you have the consistent opportunity to advance your career. The best way to get a raise is to get a better job.

Let’s explore these money mistakes in more detail, and let me explain how you can avoid them in your life and what to do instead.

Mistake #1: Marrying the Wrong Person

One of my biggest money mistakes was marrying the wrong person at 18. While love is necessary, financial compatibility is equally crucial in a long-term relationship. Marrying someone who doesn’t share your financial goals and values can set you back significantly. In my case, it cost me a decade of financial progress as she loved to spend money.

Even though she was a hard worker and made a decent income, she always spent more than she made, keeping us trapped in the rat race with little progress. After we divorced, I started my journey to financial freedom and millionaire status. My next wife was also hard-working but also spent less than she made.

When choosing a life partner, it’s essential to have open and honest conversations about money. Look for someone responsible with their finances, who shares similar goals, and is willing to work together towards a secure financial future.

Nothing can ruin your finances more than marrying someone who is lazy or loves to spend money more than they like to work; who you marry may be your life’s most important financial decision and could determine your destiny with money. Remember, your spouse should be an asset in your life, not a liability.

Mistake #2: Giving Up Too Much in a Divorce

After realizing my first marriage was a mistake, I made another error during the divorce process. To put my children first, I was overly generous in the settlement. While my intentions were good, the reality was that my financial sacrifices didn’t directly benefit my children; instead, they went to my ex-wife, who didn’t use the money wisely.

When going through a divorce, it’s important to remember that you are no longer on the same team as your ex-spouse. Fight for your financial well-being, and then take care of your children directly with your resources. Don’t let guilt or emotions cloud your judgment when securing your financial future.

Mistake #3: Buying a Brand-New Car

As a teenager and into my early twenties, I fell into the trap of buying brand-new cars. The allure of a shiny new vehicle was hard to resist, but the financial consequences were significant. New car payments, rapid depreciation, and high insurance costs drained my bank account and hindered my ability to save and invest early in life.

Looking back, I realize buying a reliable used car would have been a wiser choice, and that is what I did going forward. Buying at least a two-year vehicle still under warranty avoids the big hit you take from depreciation when you drive it off the lot that you get with a brand-new car.

By avoiding the new car premium and the associated costs, I could have put that money towards building wealth and reaching my financial goals faster. I started buying older cars in my late 20s and saving the difference in car payments after I learned this lesson. I went for many long periods with no car payments over the past 25 years. It helped with wealth building and financial independence at a young age.

Mistake #4: Falling into the High-Interest Credit Card Debt Trap

High-interest credit card debt is a dangerous trap many people, including myself, have fallen into. In my case, my first wife’s spending habits led us down this path. She consistently spent more than we earned, and since she kept much of it a secret, we were drowning in credit card debt with rapidly growing balances before I knew what was happening.

Once you’re in the cycle of high-interest debt, it’s incredibly challenging to escape. The key is to avoid it altogether by living within your means and using credit cards responsibly.

If you find yourself in debt, create a budget, cut expenses, and pay off the balances as quickly as possible. Remember, credit card debt is the opposite of wealth creation; instead of building your wealth, you’re making the banks rich. I learned to pay off all credit card debt each month.

The snowball and avalanche methods are two ways to quickly and effectively reduce debt.

Mistake #5: Staying Loyal to a Job That Doesn’t Reward You

In my twenties, I made the mistake of staying too long in a job that stopped offering opportunities for promotions or competitive compensation after I had advanced quickly early in my career. I believed that loyalty would be rewarded, but I missed out on better career prospects and higher salaries.

It’s essential to regularly assess your career and ensure that your employer values your contributions. Stay loyal to a company only if it provides competitive pay, great benefits, opportunities for advancement, and a positive work environment.

If you stagnate, don’t be afraid to explore other options. Remember, the best way to get a significant raise is often to find a better job elsewhere. Being underpaid for long periods can hurt you financially due to lost opportunities. Ensure your pay is fair for your contributions to a company and competitive with what other companies would pay you for the same skills and effort.


Making money mistakes is a natural part of the learning process, but it’s crucial to recognize and learn from them. I hope to help others avoid the same pitfalls and make better financial decisions by sharing my five worst money mistakes.

Remember, marrying the right person, protecting your finances during a divorce, avoiding new car purchases, steering clear of high-interest debt, and not staying loyal to a job that doesn’t value you properly in the marketplace, are all key lessons that can put you on the path to financial success.

Take these lessons to heart, and you’ll be well on your way to building a solid financial foundation for your future.