‘$100,000 is a…,’ Here’s Charlie Munger’s greatest advice on financial success


The practical and mental struggle of average people trying to build a comfortable life for themselves and their families is real. This statement has been best summed up by famed investor and the vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, Charlie Munger. Charlie, one of the wealthiest people in the world, has said, “The first $100,000 is a bi***, but you gotta do it.”

“I don’t care what you have to do – if it means walking everywhere and not eating anything that wasn’t purchased with a coupon, find a way to get your hands on $100,000,” he said.

This is an important milestone for investment and money management experts. They believe this is a critical step towards being financially successful. The goal is actually the most important because for several investors, the major aim is much higher than this. 

Notably, $100,000 in 1998 is equivalent to about $186,581 today. This means that over 25 years, there was an increase of $86,581. Thus, during this period, there was an average inflation rate of 2.53% per year. A cumulative price increase, therefore, was 86.58%.

Charlie did not state exactly to what measure the first $100,000 can grow as time rolls out. However, his statement is a clear indication that it can lead to noticeable and significant growth. Our financial journey will be hugely impacted by how much we earn before and after that first $100,000, Charlie’s advice suggests. These days, many people try to achieve the goal by starting their own business and or choosing a side hustle. Many come up with startups. Some start with simple newsletters, websites and other social media accounts. 

American author Janet Lowe wrote a book titled ‘Damn Right!: Behind the Scenes with Berkshire Hathaway Billionaire Charlie Munger,’ where she quoted Charles as stating that getting the first $100,000 is the most gruelling challenge one can face while building their wealth, without any capital. Reaching the first million is the next hurdle. Charles compared the process of becoming rich to rolling a snowball down a long hill – which suggests one must begin early and persist.