Let’s say we have two investors: Richard and Ryan. 

Both are single and earn RM 10k a month. 

They wish to build themselves a 6-figure investment portfolio. 

But, they choose different paths to get there. 

Richard’s Path: 

Richard could save 40% of his monthly income. 

It works out to be: 

  • RM 4k a month
  • RM 48k a year (12 months) 
  • RM 240k in 5 years (60 months)

Richard is a conservative guy. He invests in stocks that are beautiful but boring to most people. Collectively, his overall dividend yield is 5% a year. 

Thus, his dividend income is: 

Richard’s Dividends 
= RM 240k x 5% a year 
= RM 12k a year 
= RM 1k a month

It’s nothing fancy. 

But Richard is happy as he is receiving cash inflow from his stock portfolio. 

Ryan’s Path: 

Ryan spends more as he requires more in life. 

It includes a nicer car, clothes, dining, higher rent and overseas holidays. 

But still, he could save 10% of his monthly income. 

It works out to be: 

  • RM 1k a month.
  • RM 12k a year (12 months).  
  • RM 60k in 5 years (60 months). 

Now, the question is – What’s the return Ryan needs to achieve to earn RM 12k a year from investing? 

Answer: 20% a year. 

RM 60k x 20% = RM 12k a year. 

So, what stocks could earn Ryan 20% returns per annum?

Is it dividend stocks? Nope. That’s too slow. 

Instead, Ryan chooses “growth investing” as he has a need for speed. Ryan buys stocks where their prices have strong momentum. He tries to find them via technical analysis. In addition to stocks, Ryan buys Bitcoin and other cryptos. After all, you never know if they could have 2x, 3x or 5x capital in the future. 

Who’s More Efficient in Building a 6-Figure Portfolio?

My answer is Richard. 


Imagine you’re Richard. 

You began investing with your first RM 4k in monthly savings. 

Subsequently, you continue on RM 4k after RM 4k, month after month. 

A few months later, you earned your first dividend income – RM 50. It was unimpressive. But hey, it’s still income. 

Then, in the coming months, you received RM 75, RM 125, RM 200, RM 350, … in dividends. 

These are small wins that add up. The more dividends you make, the more confident you are as you’re cruising on the right track. 

By Year 2, you would hit RM 100k. More importantly, you even think that “stock investing” is second nature to you. It is just a matter of adding to your portfolio, thus, increasing your dividend income. 

Because of all these multiple small successes, you’ll continue investing. 

You’ll build on your RM 240k stock portfolio and work towards hitting RM 300k, RM 500k, RM 700k … and eventually reaching RM 1 million. 

All of these started with one underrated skill – “Save Money”. 

What About Ryan?

Will he be able to hit RM 240k or eventually RM 1 million in portfolio? 

In most cases, nope. 


This is due to his desire for quick returns like 20% a year or 2x his money. Often, the failure rate to attain such returns is high as most are unskilled to do so. 

Imagine you starting stock investing and wanting to beat Warren Buffett with as much as 20% per annum in returns. 

Sure enough, what if you fail to do so? 

Or worse, the stocks you bought drop by 30%, 40% or 50% in stock prices. 

How motivated would you be to continue investing?

Like most people in COVID-19, they started stock investing or trading. After that time, they never really continue. 

They quit as fast as they want their returns to be. It’s impatience. 


Between two investors, the one who can save more but have lower return from his investments would do better than the other who saves less but strives to hit higher returns.

Thus the importance of saving money. 

There is really no need to “do the hard things” like: 

  • Timing the market. 
  • Predict future trends. 
  • Forecast local & global economy. 
  • Monitor stock charts via technical analysis … etc

in order to achieve superior returns for our money. In most cases, they’re futile. 

Rather, I believe you’ll do very well if you could: 

  • Save money. 
  • Find those beautiful companies. 
  • Buy them when they are undervalued. 
  • Hold onto them for the long-term. 
  • Repeat and repeat. 

If you’re a high-income earner, you can build a 6-figure portfolio (at least) in the span of under 5 years by just continuing doing the basics right. To get the basics right on stock investing, check out our 1-Hour free online training session which consists of a simple case study of a real stock I’d invested so that you know how you can build yourself a 6-figure portfolio too. 

Link: Free Webinar: How to Build a Stock Portfolio that Pay Increasing Dividends?

Ian Tai
Ian Tai

Financial Content Machine. Dividend Investor. Produced 500+ Financial Articles featured in KCLau.com in Malaysia and the Fifth Person, Value Invest Asia, and Small Cap Asia in Singapore. Regular Host and Presenter of a Weekly Financial Webinar with KCLau.com. Co-Founded DividendVault.com, an online membership site that empowers retail investors to build a stock portfolio that pays rising dividends year after year in Malaysia and Singapore.

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