The Automatic Millionaire: A Powerful One-Step Plan to Live and Finish Rich

ISBN: 0767923820
ISBN 13: 9780767923828
By: David Bach

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About this book

What's the secret to becoming a millionaire? For years people have asked David Bach, the national bestselling author of "Smart Women Finish Rich," "Smart Couples Finish Rich, " and "The Finish Rich Workbook," what's the real secret to getting rich? What's the one thing I need to do? Now, in "The Automatic Millionaire," David Bach is sharing that secret. "The Automatic Millionaire" starts with the powerful story of an average American couple--he's a low-level manager, she's a beautician--whose joint income never exceeds $55,000 a year, yet who somehow manage to own two homes debt-free, put two kids through college, and retire at 55 with more than $1 million in savings. Through their story you'll learn the surprising fact that you cannot get rich with a budget! You have to have a plan to pay yourself first that is totally automatic, a plan that will automatically secure your future and pay for your present. What makes "The Automatic Millionaire" unique: You don't need a budgetYou don't need willpowerYou don't need to make a lot of money You don't need to be that interested in moneyYou can set up the plan in an hour David Bach gives you a totally realistic system, based on timeless principles, with everything you need to know, including phone numbers and websites, so you can put the secret to becoming an Automatic Millionaire in place from the comfort of your own home. This one little book has the power to secure your financial future. Do it once--the rest is automatic!

Reader's Thoughts

C.J. Graves

I'd read many other personal finance books before this one. Something you learn after a while is--they all have the same basic information in them.Pay yourself firstLive below your meansSavePut your money in the right investments for your situationyadayadayadaWhat made this book different was the "automatic" concept. Not that other books don't tell you to set up automatic payments as well, it's just not the central concept, and I believe it's a crucial component for people to understand if they want to get ahead without sabatoging themselves. Once you set up an automatic withdrawl from a bank account to be deposited automatically into an investment, well, it's hard to change that. This is a good book for those wanting to learn some simple strategies to guard against the old "money burns a whole in my pocket" excuse. I've given this book as a gift and would recommend it to my friends.


David Bach's titles were recommended by our financial planner, so I read this one first. A good, quick read with one basic premise: pay yourself first. This means if we're going to up our savings, it's best if it comes out of our paycheck automatically and if it goes straight into a pre-tax retirement account, like an IRA.His plan isn't just for retirement accounts. The idea is that any sort of savings needs to be set up on an automatic plan if it's going to happen. From reading this, I know we have two points of action: we need to up the amount going into the retirement account as it's not nearly enough and we need to start an auto-transfer from our checking to our savings account after every payday. Then I'll have to re-read to decide on our next step.


A very easy quick read with large type. The few ideas in it are very good, pay yourself first, eliminate debt, buy a house, automate everything, the Latte Factor to help people budget, setting up an emergency, and giving charity. There is also a fair amount of information on how to get started in these ideas, but overall this book could have been condensed considerably. I think I would like to automate more than I currently do, and it has inspired me to track my spending to see where I could save more, if I’m spending too much on certain things I don’t really need. The house chapter is very worthwhile, but doesn’t apply to me now, and for now I consider my parents to be my emergency fund. I do like the chapter encouraging charity which I would like to further do. I don’t think there is enough solid information about how to allocate your assets, but this is more of a starter book to get you headed in the right way rather than a finance book.

Dora McFadden

This was a good book but honestly its a lot of common sense. The reality to being a good saver is to use good judgement. But the author does make some good points about how in the long run when you buy your daily cup of coffee from any place $2 a day over decades adds up fast and you could have saved yourself a couple hundred grand. When you think of the little things at that perspective you think twice about "the latte factor". He has good points on investing in your 401K and IRAs. Plus the concept of paying yourself first. Its something that after the first read I think you can skim over every three to five years to "refresh" your goals and get yourself back on tract.

Raphael Aquino

Ended up almost regreting I read this book. The first few things in this book as a lot of people have said on here are good. Pay yourself first and do everything you can to get out of debt. After that the book just seems to go on and on about the same pay yourelf first theme. I'm not blaming the book or saying that the author was wrong but, I wonder how many people bought a home a few years ago after reading this book and now regret that they did? 401K's are looking more and more like social security every day and I guess "do everything slowy step by step until the day you retire" is a good commen sense tip but, the age to retire might continue to rise and this book doesn't factor in the cost of living for some people in certain parts of the country. I have a rule and it's "whatever you see the majority doing when it comes to how they spend or invest their money, it's probably best to do the opposite. This book seems to tell everyone that everything is fine when you put your money all in the same pot. It'll just be waiting for you when everything is said and done.


Great book. Everything he talks about is really common sense. If you just invest 15% (give or take), you'll be well off in your retirement. The key is to automate it, so you don't 'see' how much you're 'losing'. It's very informative too, he gives you actual details on how to do what and where to go for it. I highly recommend this to people of all ages, but especially people in their 20's and 30's.

Mohammed Alsaleh

الكتاب بالجملة مفيد لعامة الناس .. كونها يحوي طريقة لتجميع مبلغ مالي جيد من خلال التوفير من الإيراد الشهري أو النصف شهري ..يحوي أفكار كثيرة رائعة .. لا يرقى لما طرحه كيوساكي في كتابه " الأب الغني والأب الفقير " لكنه في الجملة رائع ومفيدأكثر ما أعجبني فيه طريقة التسديد النصف شهري والذي يضيف نصف شهر في السنة ويسقط عليك نصف التكلفة بعد مرور عشرين سنة ..أنصح بقراءته

Molly Murphy

Put financial savings as a priority. This book was a great motivator and teaches you strategies to find money to save and how to put it on autopilot.


Unabashedly basic. You could easily learn this information from some good personal finance blogs. And the tone is overly condescending.


The Automatic Millionaire is a popular personal finance guide geared toward beginners that, despite having some good advice, fails to be a solid finance book due to two major issues.First, the first impression one gets is that this book reads like a late night infomercial. Had I picked this book up at a bookstore I would've put it down after reading the first few pages. I was able to make it through the book by ignoring the snazzy marketing-speak; and that's no small feat. I felt like the whole time I was being sold some sort of Ronco product, and that made me feel dirty and dishonest on Bach's behalf. That style of writing only succeeds in turning off your readers.Second, Bach misleads his readers by suggesting they forgo a planed budget. His point is that if you do a written budget you'll fail to pay yourself first. For beginning personal financiers, that is a risk of budgeting your paycheck, but there is a way around it . Bach should suggest people pay themselves first, then budget with what's left. This approach is not only more holistic, but it also teaches first-timers the importance of actually knowing where money is coming from and where it ends up.


A very simple and short read, with one basic premise: start saving money, today, by setting up an automatic 401(k) (or similar) pre-tax contribution. There's a bit more information in there about what to do if you have personal debt, how to invest in your own home, etc., but it's basically about ending up with a bunch of money by simply contributing to your 401(k).I already do contribute to my 401(k) at work, but reading this was a good reminder of why I should continue to do so, and how much to contribute. I also learned a bit about the best ways to pay down a mortgage (the twice-a-month payment plan is interesting).


I have read this book several times since it was published. I like its simplicity. It is 200 pages, but I took notes on the important principles and I was able to boil everything down onto one page. None of the ideas or concepts are new, but this book does give readers some insights into how one might go about putting these principles into action. This book and Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover are probably the best two resources in terms of 1) learning about personal finance and 2) putting a plan in place to address most folks money problems.


This is one of the best personal finance books I've ever read. It is simple and straightforward. Even though I'd heard much of this advice before, the simplicity of this book has inspired me in ways I haven't been before. Is it brilliantly written? no. But I found it ridiculously useful.


I'm a bit of a personal finance nerd, and I love budgeting, being frugal, and paying off debt. I tackled my consumer debt after returning home from a teaching job in Japan, and in about 2 1/2 years paid off about $20K thanks to Dave Ramsey's "Total Money Makeover" and "Your Money or Your Life" by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin. Between those two, I had all the motivation/information I needed and diligently dug myself out of my B.S. money ways while working full time and going to grad school full time (for free, thanks to my employer- hence the full time work thing).This long winded introduction had a point... oh, yes. So I saw this book on my mentor teacher's shelves, and my other mentor teacher uses it for her LA IV class, and I decided to check it out to compare to other finance books I had read. All in all, I think it's a solid book. The "automatic" in the title doesn't refer to the timeline of achieving millionaire status, but rather the method of becoming a millionaire by automating all of one's bills so that one doesn't miss the money being diverted into retirement accounts and savings funds and debt payoff. I fully agree with this principle, because humans are in general terrible at wishy washy things like "Motivation" and "Willpower". I believe these are myths. Accept that you don't have the wherewithal to diligently get money and give away 1/3 of it every month to boring adult things like 401K's and credit card payoffs, and just make it automatic so you never see it/never miss it. If people only followed this one bit of advice and were complete nincompoops with investing I think it would serve them well.Did I learn anything new? No, but nothing in personal finance is truly new and groundbreaking- we all know we should avoid debt, save for retirement, and not fritter away our money on credit card fees and interest, but most people still do it. So there needs to be 31 flavors of personal finance information out there so that people can find what makes them sit up and finally pay attention to basic adult skills of financial responsibility. I think this book would be a great starting point that is more nuanced than Ramsey's "Total Money Makeover" and less New Age-y than "Your Money or Your Life". It's straightforward, easy to read, detailed without getting dense, and makes something very overwhelming seem manageable.


Fast read on finances, but really the same message drilled in over and over: automate your finances. Automate your retirement, automate your credit card payments, automate your tithing (I have to admit I didn't finish the last chapter). It's a no-brainer book nowadays. Who doesn't automate these? Really helpful chart though that I did print out on how starting saving earlier can not only make you more via compound interest, but it involves less principle paid in. This information doesn't help me now, but it's good for me to show visuals to my kids. I'd love to start them off on the right financial footing, and it seems investing their teenaged-year-jobs wages is one of the most prominent methods to secure this.

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