How to Build a Family Legacy of Prosperity
If there’s anything that we have learned from the past year, it’s that families need to take care of themselves. As we all huddled in our homes waiting for it to be safe to socialize outside, we were faced with the fact that families are the most important thing we have in life. Many adult children were unable to be with parents or siblings who live in separate homes. We worried about their welfare, hoping they were safe and healthy. For parents with younger children who still live at home, some worried about being able to put food on the table after having lost their livelihoods. We learned that we can’t get too comfortable with a steady paycheck. We learned that self-reliability is not an option; it’s essential for survival. It’s a lesson learned the hard way; through personal experience.
What is a Family Legacy?
A family legacy isn’t just one thing. It’s a combination of things that define what a multi-generational family is all about. A family legacy may include things like family traditions, family interests, inheritances and wealth. Every family has a family legacy, it’s just that some families build legacies consciously while others just kind of allow them to happen. It’s the families who consciously create and nurture family legacies that most often end up having healthy, prosperous family members and descendants, generation after generation.
Of course, sometimes best intentions aren’t enough. Goodness doesn’t always prevail. We live in the real world, not a fairy tale. If a family breadwinner who works hard loses their job during the pandemic, it’s going to be extra hard to create a family legacy of prosperity. It’s going to be extra hard to keep up a happy appearance at a sparse dinner table.
But this is why it’s even more important to realize that a family legacy consists of more than just money in the bank. A family legacy can be one of perseverance, ingenuity, tenaciousness. It can be one of not only surviving, but thriving in the face of adversity. So no matter what level of adversity you’ve faced over the past year and a half, know that you can still build a family legacy of prosperity.
The Martel Family Legacy
In our family, we have begun to build a legacy, thanks to the thoughtful parenting and guidance of Eric and Lynn, our family patriarch and matriarch. As you may have read from some of the bios that we’ve posted on our website, Eric didn’t receive a lot of support from his own father in terms of investing in real estate. When he bought an apartment building at the age of 18, his father stopped speaking to him for a time. Eric didn’t learn how to manage money from his father. He learned that at college, where he studied to be an actuary. Lynn didn’t learn how to start a business and be an entrepreneur from her parents, either. Did you know that Lynn started and ran her own gourmet sauce brand that was stocked in Whole Foods stores around the country? She built that business from the ground up, through long hours and hard work, shaping her plan and making improvements along the way. Both Eric and Lynn learned the hard way—at the school of hard knocks—how to be successful entrepreneurs. Throughout the years, they experienced highs and lows. But they never gave up. They just picked themselves up and started over.
When they had Antoine and Etienne, they implemented a different parenting style than they had experienced growing up. Antoine was bursting with business ideas from a young age, as you may have read about in many of his social media postings. What isn’t always obvious from the outside is the support—both financial and emotional—that Antoine received from his parents. Etienne’s path has been slow and steady. From a young age he knew he wanted to be involved with buildings somehow. He inherited his head for numbers and subsequently found himself intrigued with analyzing properties for economic viability. So much so that he impressed everyone he encountered and soon mentored under a real estate broker to get his own license. Now, of course, Etienne has taken his place overseeing new turnkey rental projects in Memphis. All this wasn’t just some fairy dust sprinkled over their cots when they were babies. It came about from Eric and Lynn, who nurtured and supported their sons in a way that helped them blossom and become the men they are today. When Antoine surprised his parents with a check on the Christmas tree one year to reimburse them for college tuition, it was possible because they had given Antoine the backing to learn and grow. All this wasn’t just a twist of good fortune. Antoine had dozens of business ideas that he tried out over the years. But when one failed he never gave up. He learned how to be flexible and keep learning and growing and trying new strategies. The same with Etienne. Why would he ever think that bringing his dad and brother to a real estate seminar was a good idea? Because he had learned to always be open to new challenges, new opportunities. He learned that from Eric. He learned that from Lynn.
Now, our family business supports our entire family, as well as a handful of valued employees and independent contractors. Through our company endeavors, we are able to provide good-paying work for construction workers, real estate agents, property managers, clean up crews and more, in multiple cities. We have helped to refurbish neighborhoods, bringing up home values for property owners in the areas in which we invest. We are most proud of being able to help investors like you to realize passive income through our turnkey rentals.
The Martel family legacy came about from a conscious effort by Eric and Lynn to engrain in their sons the hope and trust that they could achieve their dreams.
You can do that for your family too, no matter what your current bank account says. Here are some ideas for building your own family legacy of prosperity.
– Teach Your Kids About Money
In the olden days, kids were taught that it was rude to ask about family money. If a son asked his dad how much money they had, the question was quickly shot down. While it’s still impolite to ask others about how much money they have, it’s a good idea to be a little more open about family finances. Of course you don’t want to expose details about family finances to kids. They don’t have the maturity to be discreet on the playground, etc. But it is a good idea to sit down with your kids and share tasks like bill paying, budgeting and balancing the checkbook, even if you have to use “dummy” accounts in order to preserve privacy.
Another way to teach kids about money is to have children earn their money, instead of handing them cash in the form of a weekly allowance. An allowance might be best tied to certain responsibilities or tasks rather than letting kids think they just automatically get handed money every week for doing nothing more than existing.
– Support Business Ideas
Along the way, kids sometimes get business ideas. Consider supporting these ideas, even if you as an adult can see right away that they aren’t viable. Kids often learn best by doing, making mistakes and correcting.
This may require a balancing act on your part. You want to be supportive without interfering. You want to give advice without making it seem like you’re taking over. It’s hard, but let your kids take the lead in how involved they want you to be.
– Offer Inspiring Stories
Try to make good role models front and center. Kids have too many people out there, making it look like all you need to do to succeed is take a good selfie and gain as many followers as possible. Try to counter this kind of influence with true role models; people they can relate to. For instance, Antoine Martel started investing at just 19 years old. Just three years later he had helped build a million dollar business.
– Let Kids Know; the Earlier the Better
Kids don’t have to wait until they’re out of college or a few years into their first professional job to start learning about investing. Let your kids know that it’s never too early to invest. Actually, the earlier the better. If your child can save up money from their part-time jobs while still living at home, this will give them a huge advantage toward being financially independent later on. While Antoine was still in college, he was already learning about real estate investing and making passive income off of his first rental property.
– Share Your Own Failures and Successes
When you have the opportunity, share your own failures and success stories with your kids. Remember, they don’t know much about you from before they were born. It’s good for them to learn about the struggles you faced and overcame. In a way, it will help them to see that they, too, can be faced with similar challenges and get past them.
In the next few weeks, we’ll be sharing something special about a new aspect of our Martel family legacy; something we’ve been wanting to do for a long time. For now, we hope that your family can be safe, happy and prosperous. As always, if we can help with questions you have about turnkey rental income, please don’t hesitate to contact us.