Creating Wealth From Zero Using Simple Financial Principles

Estimated reading time: 12 minutes

Creating wealth from zero was a journey from $0 to 7 figures which began by changing how we managed money.

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Using Simple Financial Principles Learn How To Create Wealth

Creating Wealth Means You Drive The Car Or You Park It

You don’t need money to make money, nor are those from generational wealth the luckiest.

Not everyone comes from generational wealth, money, or assets handed down from generation to generation.

I come neither; however, my parents taught me that creating wealth meant making your money work harder for you.

I’m that guy who grew up with parents who thought real estate investing was an asset, owning a business was a risk, and frugal living was imperative.

Many would assume the word ‘wealth‘ to be associated with millions of dollars.

Right away, some of you with that mindset would not even attempt to step into that wealth-making path.


The words ‘Creating Wealth” seems so tricky, far away, and impossible.

In other words, the lack the motivation to move into the driver’s seat prevents you from creating the wealth you deserve.

Take Financial Risk Only Where You Feel Comfortable

Well, I took that chance and bought my first house at 19.

Buying a flat was not only a savvy real estate move; I was jumping into that driver’s seat.

Creating wealth from zero became my reality when I sold my first flat and bought my first semi-detached house.

I was at 21 with zero debt apart from my mortgage, under 100,000 Canadian Dollars.

That was a long time ago, ha!

Luckily, that real estate investment paid off because I earned a very nice profit when I sold it.

I didn’t get it all; things didn’t go as planned with an ex-girlfriend, but we parted ways happily.

The Meaning Of Creating Wealth Is Personal

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Creating wealth was becoming a part of my motivational journey at this point.

I was starting to realize the benefits of owning real estate and how I could buy and sell for profit.

My parents were the same way, so I had financial education to save money to buy my first house.

Although my parents weren’t wealthy, they created wealth that fit their mindset and lifestyle.

Now that they are retired, they don’t have much to worry about and can still travel and do what they planned.

Plan Instead Of Planning For Tonight

You see, creating wealth from zero means two things to me:

  1. You’re planning instead of planning for tonight.
  2. Wealth is as much as you need to put you in a position of financial safety

So, I was always the guy who thought ahead of me because I would watch my parents.

They managed a fairly successful but seasonal business, often a financial balancing game.

Real estate investments proved to be one of their smartest financial moves, although it came with many headaches.

Lastly, frugal living allowed them to live a debt-free lifestyle early as wealth for them took on a new meaning.

In some ways, children follow in their parent’s footsteps or go in the opposite direction.

Creating Wealth Your Way By Following Your Dreams

Although I had lived through the early years of my parent’s building wealth from zero, I decided on a different path.

After I got married, we combined our assets which helped us get to where we are today.

We both came from creating wealth from zero since our parents didn’t hand us a cheque to send us on our way.

No matter what we did in life, we had to do it ourselves, which meant working two jobs, taking extra shifts, working overtime, saving instead of spending, and watching our dollars.

Everything we did together revolved around the fine print, research, and ensuring what we were buying was the best deal.

We’d jump on any opportunities where we could earn extra money.

Examples would be focus groups and gift cards or cash for giving our opinion.

There was a point where we were being called for a focus group earning $100 each, sometimes more every month.

We’d even test food products for $75 a session that lasted only 20 minutes.

I know, right?

Who wouldn’t do that?

Well, all these little extra miles helped us save money so we could be where we are today, debt-free.

Shifting The Way We Planned To Use Our Money

We were always thinking ahead whenever it came to earning and saving money.

When you have money in your savings account, it’s far easier to advocate for future purchases.

However, the opposite is true when you aren’t saving money, which we didn’t want to be.

How would we make our money work for us?

These are many of the ideas we considered.

  • Planning for a family
  • Buying our first house and perhaps our forever home
  • Becoming debt-free early
  • Renovations
  • Buying a new vehicle
  • Investing for Retirement
  • Insurance
  • Generational wealth for our children

Related: How to start building wealth in your 20’s and 30’s

Becoming Business Partners

There was a point where we were knee-deep into buying a Property Guys franchise and backed out at the last minute.

The cost for the franchise was around $65,000 and a huge chunk of our savings at the time, but we were weighing our options.

This also included us packing up and moving to a new city to run the business together.

I’m not sure why we did that, but it was one of those things where business risk was a tough call for us.

Many business owners never expected to see what the world is going through right now with COVID-19.

That’s part of the risk, and many businesses are closing their doors because they can’t financially keep going.

Creating Wealth With Real Estate

Moving forward on creating wealth from zero, we negotiated a pretty good deal on our house in 2009.

The markets were good for us, and we jumped on an opportunity to buy low with a hefty down payment.

After graduating from school and buying our house, earning $5 more than minimum wage, $9.50, I hesitated.

Related: How to build your wealth without earning big bucks

Before signing the dotted line, we thought of many what-if scenarios again, planning like always.

We decided on only buying a house on one income which was mine, since I earned less than my wife at the time.

Thankfully, we did that as she lost her job only three months into buying our house.

The key is not to get in over your head with real estate even if the bank says you can.

Just don’t do it.

Related: How we became mortgage-free in 5 years

Becoming A Landlord Isn’t For Everyone

Since then, we’ve considered buying a second house as a rental or buying a new one and renting our current one.

We decided not to do this as we weren’t in any position to be landlords, nor did we want to deal with being one.

Many successful people have created their wealth by being a landlord.

Being a landlord is a great way to pay off a house without putting much into it apart from maintaining it.

The problem is that you don’t always get nice tenants, which can turn ugly quickly.

We weren’t up for going to court and dealing with all the renting laws.

That can be a full-time job, and it wasn’t feasible then for us and still isn’t.

We’re not interested.

For us creating wealth at the time did NOT include either;

  • Purchasing a business
  • Buying a rental home

Where did our 7-figure wealth come from?

Related: How we became millionaires early

Creating Wealth Using Simple Tools Available To Everyone

Creating wealth for us took on financial principles that everyone should adopt.

You need to ask yourself what wealth means to YOU.

Write it down and decide if it’s a number, a feeling, or both.

What number would make you feel accomplished or wealthy?

If you haven’t been pushing yourself to the next level but creating wealth is on your radar, there’s never a bad time to start.

Below are the ways we created our 7-figure financial portfolio for our retirement and to pass on generational wealth to our son.

1. Stop Spending Money

You probably hear this always and laugh because you feel it’s unsustainable.

You’re mistaken because it is, and it’s your mindset that is holding you back from achieving your goals.

The fastest way to create wealth is to stop spending money on things you don’t need.

If you want the quick answer to making wealth real, that’s what it is.

There’s far more to creating wealth that meets your expectations other than putting the brakes on spending.

I THINK THAT’S GREAT when I hear that people plan to cut back on spending money.

But what do they plan on doing with that money?

This was our first step in creating wealth and stopping unnecessary spending.

2. Save Money Wherever Possible

We lived for coupon savings as you may have read throughout this blog.

The savings were incredible and continue to be amazing in 2020 but often by using online apps like Checkout51 or FlashFood.

Just recently, in the last year, we’ve been diving head-first into cashback apps in Canada.

Our favorite cashback app is Rakuten Canada, which offers us the most money, followed by Great Canadian Rebates and Swagbucks.

Personally, If you haven’t signed up and shop online for anything, you’re leaving cash on the table.

What a smart move for us, as the money keeps rolling back into our bank account.

Another way we saved money was by participating in Nielsen HomeScan.

All you do is scan what you buy at the grocery store, and you earn points toward gift cards and other prizes.

EASY!!! Right?

3. Create A Budget Binder

Using and creating a budget binder was a big deal in increasing our wealth over the years.

Documenting what we were spending, saving, and having the data available allowed us to make changes where needed.

Check out my 10-Step Mini-Budgeting Series (We documented the early days of our budgeting journey step by step)

I’ve uploaded the Excel budget I designed for our family so you can use it for free and a printable version for those who aren’t computer savvy.

I’ve also uploaded many printables for your budget binder to keep things organized.

Our paperwork, receipts, and monthly bills were all over the place. We needed a system to stay on top of things.

You can check it all out here>>> Free Downloads and Resources.

Subscribe for my free custom Emergency Binder and 50-Page 2023 Canadian Budget Binder.

4. Start An Online Business

We never set out to do this, but it happened before our eyes.

Canadian Budget Binder was supposed to be a blog about our journey to debt freedom.

It became a 5-figure business growing year after year with many new subscribers.

I didn’t realize the need for finance experts in the frugal living and budgeting industry the way there is.

If I were on the outside looking in, I’d want that transparency in numbers and reality that someone else shares with me.

I hope that’s what we’ve been doing by sharing our budgeting journey over the past 9 years.

What I’ve learned about blogging has continually helped me to improve this site, and I wish I had done it sooner.

Related: 9 Mistakes I Made When I Started My Blog

Don’t Dwell On The Past

I can’t get back many lost years of revenue from the beginning.

What I can do is fix the mistakes and move forward, which I have been doing every day.

It’s lots of work, I won’t lie, but it is nice to get money deposited while you sleep.

Although this is NOT my full-time job, it has become a nice little income I can continue building upon.

My future goal for CBB is to take it from 5 to six figures, although that might take some hard work.

I can do this.

Self-motivation is a good motivator, as is support from your online community, family, friends, and fellow bloggers in different niches.

When we retire, I hope one day, our son can take over CBB and continue to share his knowledge about finance.

If he doesn’t do well, I suppose he can sell the blog if we’re dead and gone and keep the profits.

Starting a blog is a great way to earn extra income.

Related: How To Start A Blog Resources

5- Invest In Tomorrow

We could put money into our retirement savings using the simple financial principles we adopted over the years.

Not only have we been able to max out our Tax-Free Savings Account right to the start of the program but I’ve done the same with my RRSP.

Mrs. CBB and I have always taken advantage of work-related investment opportunities.

Don’t throw that opportunity away if your employer offers a pension or investment matching program.

Find ways to save the money to pay into the program, as it will more than benefit your golden years.

6- Learn From The Experts

Even though some people in the online world consider me a financial expert in frugal living, I am humbled by that title.

I find constant learning opportunities online to learn from other experts to improve my financial game.

Some of my favourites are Globe and Mail journalist Rob Carrick, Canadian Blogger Jessica Moorehouse has an award-winning podcast, and Mark from My Own Advisor, is my go-to guy to learn about investment dividends.

I also enjoy joining in with successful online woman entrepreneurs such as Jenna Kutcher, a media marketing expert.

Just recently, I joined in on an Enriched Academy MasterClass, which is free online.

Of course, reading multitudes of online articles, news articles, and occasionally, a paperback book helps.

These are just things I do when I have the time to continue exploring more about Canadian financial health.

Note: None of these links are affiliates and what I listen to or read.

Your Drive Will Help You With Creating Wealth

The story’s moral is that you’ll do whatever it takes if you want something bad enough.

Stop the whining, pull up your winner’s smile, and work on creating wealth.

Discussion: How could you pay off debt and begin creating wealth?

Leave comments below to share with others who may be interested in your journey to debt-free.

Thanks for stopping by,


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