Money stuff can be overwhelming and scary.
When you're an entrepreneur, you have the tough task of managing two sets of finances: your business' and your own.
Nicole Lapin, personal finance expert, knows how tough it can be, and wants to help you navigate budgeting, saving money, and preparing for retirement.
We picked her brain about personal finance and her new book, Rich Bitch: A Simple 12-Step Plan for Getting Your Financial Life Together...Finally.
Nicole's advice is valuable to any entrepreneur, but especially women, trying to get rich and sort out their finances.
Money isn’t something a lot of people like to talk about, let alone write a whole book about! What got you so interested in personal finance?
Money is the story of our current times, and it’s a part of our zeitgeist. Just look at shows like Shark Tank, Tabitha’s Salon Takeover, even Cake Boss. They’re all about business, and making small businesses work. We have a national entrepreneurial spirit going, where everyone wants to be the next Mark Zuckerberg. But we also have a national personal debt epidemic. So I’m interested in helping women and young people get their financial houses in order so they can make their money and business dreams grow.
How is your approach to personal finance different than some of the other gurus out there?
We are living in a 'new normal.' What might have been true about personal finance 10, 5, even just 2 years ago is wildly different in our post-recession economic landscape. I’m excited to be the first personal finance expert to address those new issues, and debunk a lot of the standing “conventional” wisdom. Do you need a 401(k)? Maybe. But maybe not. Should you buy a house? I say, for most people renting is the better way to go. Can you treat yourself to small indulgences like your morning latte? YES! The idea of the 'American Dream' is dead. It's your dream. Your destiny. And, I’m thrilled to be a part of that financial paradigm shift.
Why do you think it’s important for women to take charge of their financial well-being?
When it comes to our money and our careers, it’s time for women to stop smiling and nodding and join the conversation. We’ve gotten so used to information overload that often instead of asking the pertinent questions and sifting through the information to find the truisms that work for us, we just take them at face value. I’m on a mission to get young people, especially women, to speak the language of finance. It’s just not that scary, and it’s time to take control of our financial destinies.
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Honestly, my former self. I didn’t grow up with The Wall Street Journal on the kitchen table. There was no talk about stocks or bonds in my family…ever. As part of an immigrant family, I was raised thinking that stashing your cash under your mattress was the best place to keep your money. I never learned or thought about how to grow that money through investing, and how to make my money work for me. I learned everything I know about money and finance not through an MBA, but the school of Hard Knocks. And now I’m writing for her—my former self who could not yet speak the language of finance. I’m her Rosetta Stone, and I hope to play that role for many other women, too.
What’s your best piece of advice for women when it comes to their finances?
Get going…now!! Don’t wait around and let your life, and your finances, pass you by. It’s so important to lay a good foundation for yourself in your 20s and 30s; your peak earning years, especially before kids. I talk all the time about a magical thing known as “compounding interest.” It essentially means that you’re earning interest on your interest, and that means that whether you’re saving for retirement or a new house or your kids to go to college, the sooner you dump some money into a solid savings vehicle, like a Roth IRA, the more that money grows over time. It’s literally the difference between making money and making a fortune.
Nicole Lapin is a veteran financial journalist, serving as an anchor on CNN, CNBC, and Bloomberg. Her first book Rich Bitch: A Simple 12-Step Plan for Getting Your Financial Life Together...Finally was published in 2015. __You can follow Nicole on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and at NicoleLapin.com for smart financial advice and unconventional money tips.