â€œThe rich invent money,â€ says Kiyosaki. â€œGreat opportunities are not seen with your eyes. They are seen with your mind.â€
In his book â€œRich Dad Poor Dad,â€ Kiyosaki recounts the story of growing up with two fathers â€“ his own, and his best friendâ€™s. While his own father was a college graduate with numerous degrees, he never became a wealthy man. On the other hand, his friendâ€™s father never finished the eighth grade, but would become one of the richest men in Hawaii. According to Kiyosaki, both of these men played a critical role in shaping his own attitude about money.
When there was something that Kiyosakiâ€™s father, or any of his kids wanted, he would always first look at the price tag. If it was too expensive, that was the end of the story. The father of Kiyosakiâ€™s friend would look at it from a different point of view. â€œMy poor dad would say, â€˜I canâ€™t afford it,â€™ while my rich dad would say, â€˜How can I afford it?â€™â€ Kiyosaki chose to follow his rich dadâ€™s strategy.
For Kiyosaki and his rich dad, their mind is their greatest asset. â€œMost people never get wealthy simply because they are not trained financially to recognize opportunities right in front of them,â€ he says. â€œThe rich have learned to recognize opportunities as well as how to create them.â€
Kiyosaki has trained his brain to see the business opportunities investments around him â€“ and there are always some great ones around him, he says. â€œThere have never been more opportunities to become rich in the last 10 years. And thereâ€™ll be even more opportunities in the next 10.â€ Kiyosaki admits to missing out on some of the great ones â€“ eBay, Google, MySpace, and the Macintosh â€“ but he has managed to be persistent enough to strike his own goldmines.
Kiyosaki took his first real estate investment course in Honolulu in 1974. It was a three day course that taught him what to look for in making a good investment. His professor told all the students, however, that everyone would say those great deals do not exist. As Kiyosaki soon discovered, his professor was right. After going door to door of real estate offices in search of good real estate investments, he kept being told that he â€œwas either dreaming or smoking funny cigarettes.â€ But, Kiyosaki knew the opportunities were out there and he kept on in search of them.
Finally, an obscure real estate broker in Waikiki offered Kiyosaki the deal he was waiting for: a condominium that was in foreclosure. He put $2,000 down for the $18,000 property and says, â€œMy investment career had begun. More important, I was training my brain to see what most people donâ€™t see.â€
When it comes to real estate investing, Kiyosakiâ€™s brain is his biggest asset. But, he also knows his limits, admitting it would quickly turn into a costly liability if he were to begin looking at investment opportunities in technology, or another area he knows little about. â€œPeople who refuse to open their minds to new strategies seldom become rich,â€ he says, â€œwhich I guess is why there are more critics in the world than rich people.â€