We’ve talked about financial gurus before. And while many are great, and offer a lot of solid advice, sometimes they miss the mark. Not every piece of advice will work for every single person. Just like I’m a fan of Dave Ramsey, I’m a fan of Suze Orman as well. She’s considered a pioneer for women and their finances, and she’s pretty darn savvy. But just like other gurus, she’s given some bad advice as well. Here’s the worst Suze Orman advice to date.
She Doesn’t Really Think You Should Invest In Stocks
While you may have heard Suze Orman telling you to buy stocks, the reality is that she doesn’t really believe in them. She’s said as much years ago and even said she only had about 1 million dollars invested in stocks. In fact, most of Suze Orman’s wealth comes from municipal bonds.
So which is it?
Does she really recommend stocks or does she recommend bonds?
She Doesn’t Believe In Convenience
Suze Orman has said before that convenience can make you broke.
She doesn’t believe in…
- ordering food
- or groceries
- or spending money on things that make your life easier.
However, what she doesn’t say is how paying for these “conveniences” can help you save time. And in essence, you can go out and make more money. I’ve talked before about how I save 20+ hours a week through using convenience, and those hours are spent making me a lot more money (which I can then invest).
She Thinks You Need To Wait Until 70 To Retire
If you’ve been part of the personal-finance community for a while, you may have known about the huge controversy Suze Orman stirred when she basically said you should wait forever and a day to retire (I’m being dramatic, but let’s be honest, 70 is pretty up there).
While I believe Suze had great meaning and intentions behind what she said, the fact that she thinks people should wait until 70-75 to enjoy life is crazy to me. I’m all for financial independence, no matter what your age.
And, Suze acts as if social security will be around (the way it is now) by the time someone like me turns 70. But most likely, it won’t be. So why would I continue to work until 70-75 for something I may not even gain when I can instead use my younger years to take advantage of compound investing and retire a bit earlier?
I’m sorry, WHAT?
Look, I don’t know what planet Suze Orman was on when she gave this advice, but you most likely won’t need $5-$10 million to retire.
If we follow the 4% rule on that, that’s about $300k a year. If you’ve paid off debts and are living within your means, you should never need that much to live on. Unless you live in a super expensive part of the world, you could easily live on $100k or less per year.
I understand that if you’re used to living a certain lifestyle, you may want to spend about as much in your retirement years. But if you find yourself wanting to live on $200-$400k a year, you may need to reevaluate your retirement priorities.
She Believes You Should Help Your Parents, Even If It Means Losing Money
Now, I could be taking personal offense to this because I don’t speak to my parents (here’s a glimpse at the reason if you’re curious…). However, I just can’t believe that someone who believes in compounding interest would believe that you’re supposed to take care of your parents financially, even if it means losing out on retirement yourself.
You may disagree with me, but as a parent, your job is to take care of your children. You brought them into this world, they didn’t ask to be here. However, it is NOT up to your children to take care of you. If you’re banking on your kids to take care of you in your old age, you had kids for all the wrong reasons.
And that is me saying that as a parent myself.
I would never expect my child to put down her own dreams and future to take care of me. Especially if I didn’t do what I was supposed to do financially. You can love your parents and not help them out financially. And you shouldn’t be made to feel guilty because of that.
Everyone has a choice in life, and if your parents chose not to prepare for the future, well, sorry to say, that’s on them. Let’s stop recommending generational debt and “lack” just because we think it’s the right thing to do.
Bad Suze Orman Advice: Wrap Up
Again, I like Suze Orman. I think she gives great advice on budgeting and helping women especially overcome under-earning. However, her advice on investing and overworking yourself to save money is outdated and nowhere near what most people should strive for.
What do you think? Am I over-reacting? Are you a Suze Orman die-hard? Tell us in the comments below!
AUTHOR Kimberly Studdard
Kim Studdard is a strategy consultant and course launching expert. When she isn't spending time with her daughter and husband, or crying over This Is Us, you'll find her teaching other mompreneurs how to scale their business without scaling their workload.