“Unfair Advantage” by Robert Kiyosaki

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Sumo wrestler take down

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Ah, an unfair advantage.

Isn’t this something you’d like in all aspects of your life?  I certainly would.

Unfair Advantage: The Power of Financial Education is about finding that unfair advantage in the financial sense, and earning your financial freedom, by Rich Dad’s Prophecy author Robert Kiyosaki.

This is the 3rd of his books I’ve read and reviewed on Enwealthen so far, and covers some key areas you can leverage to improve your odds of success in life.  In addition, he includes 6 chapters of bonus material in an unusual format, underscoring that this is a self-published book.

Unfair Advantages

To cut to the chase, the unfair advantages are

  • knowledge
  • taxes
  • debt
  • risk
  • compensation

The book is written in a repetitive, Q&A format with questions posited, then a short answer, then the longer explanation of the answer.  Interestingly, this is the first of his books I’ve read where he includes answers from other people – his similarly successful wife, his lawyer, his accountant, his broker, etc.  Throughout the book he repeats his usual mantra: jobs are more risky than investing, the educational system only educates children for jobs not for successreal estate is the way to achieve a positive cash flow, and the Rich Dad products can help you succeed.

The most interesting bit of information I found in this book was his description of his investments in oil as an example of how to leverage tax benefits.  He does a good job of explaining how the tax system is designed to incent investment behavior, so pay attention to what they’re incenting.

For example, by investing in oil exploration, he is guaranteed a minimum 28% ROI due to tax deductions from the government.  Some would say oil exploration is risky.  Perhaps, but his point is, a guaranteed 28% return greatly reduces the risk, so get a good tax advisor, and look at the intersection of your talents and interests with what the tax code is incenting.  There’s money to be made everywhere, you just have to have the audacity to pick it up.

His final advantage is on compensation.  Interestingly, this isn’t about working for money, but the opposite – how working not for money, actually makes you more money.  A critical example here is how your reputation and history of trustworthiness and fair dealing will build the relationships that give you access to the deals that don’t get advertised.  The best deals are those you hear about from a phone call: Joe has this opportunity, are you interested?  These are the sweetheart deals that only take a few calls to close, and you definitely want to be involved in.  But you have to earn your way into them first – learn the ropes, get the experience, build your reputation, and they will find you.

In the bonus material, I found his argument for capitalism interesting.  Using classic Marxist vocabulary, he discusses the outcomes for the proletariat and bourgeoisie.  Unusual reading, but that’s one of the many things I enjoy about Robert Kiyosaki’s works – it makes you think, and not always what you thought you thought.  Again, his main point is working for a job is a recipe for disaster, our education system only trains you for a job, taxes will drain you dry if you let them, and 401(k)s are for suckers.

Much of the content and message in Unfair Advantage is similar if not the same as in Rich Dad, Poor Dad, and Increase Your Financial IQ.  For example, the Cone of Learning.  However, given that according to the cone, you only retain 10% of what you read, a lot of repetition is probably a good thing for the readers.

On the whole, it was worth the time to read.  Hopefully, I’ll retain more than 10% for the future.

You can purchase Unfair Advantage or read more reviews on Amazon.  For  more book reviews and other wealth building information as it is published, join the Enwealthen mailing list.

Have you read Unfair Advantage?  Share your biggest takeaways in the comments below.

 

Photo of sumo wrestlers in the ring courtesy of Miguel Castaneda.

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