Maybe it’s true that having $1m+ these days isn’t as impressive as it used to be. But it’s still a measure that we continue to use as a marker of financial “arriving”.
What’s further interesting is that even in the midst of ongoing economic gyrations, the numbers of people who are achieving that mark is increasing.
But I’m most interested in the kind of financial (and otherwise) behavior which leads to this status. And, having dealt with clients who have reached this point, I believe I have come to a few objective truths about how this stuff works.
With certain exceptions, it’s not what Hollywood tells you about it. In fact, based on my research, here are 11 portraits of what today’s New York Metro millionaire looks more like …
11 Wealthy Habits You Should Pay Attention To by Allan Rolnick
“Be brave enough to live the life of your dreams according to your vision and purpose instead of the expectations and opinions of others.” -Roy T. Bennett
1) He always spends less than he earns. In fact, his mantra is that over the long run, you’re better off if you strive to be anonymously rich rather than deceptively poor.
2) She knows that patience is truth. The odds are you won’t become a millionaire overnight. If you’re like her, your security will be accumulated gradually, by diligently saving your money over multiple decades.
3) He pays off his credit cards in full every month. He’s smart enough to understand that if he can’t afford to pay cash for something, then he can’t afford it.
4) She realized early on that money does not buy happiness. If you’re looking for financial joy, you need to focus on attaining financial freedom.
5) He understands that money is like a toddler; it is incapable of managing itself. After all, you can’t expect your money to grow and mature as it should without some form of credible money management.
6) She’s a big believer in paying yourself first. It’s an essential tenet of personal finance and a great way to build your savings and instill financial discipline.
7) She also knows that the few millionaires that reached that milestone without a plan got there only because of dumb luck. It’s not enough to simply “declare” to the universe that you want to be financially free. This is not a “Secret”.
8) When it came time to set his savings goals, he wasn’t afraid to think big. Financial success demands that you have a vision that is significantly larger than you can currently deliver upon.
9) He realizes that stuff happens, and that’s why you’re a fool if you don’t insure yourself against risk. Remember that the potential for bankruptcy is always just around the corner, and can be triggered from multiple sources: the death of the family’s key breadwinner, divorce, or disability that leads to a loss of work.
10) She understands that time is an ally of the young. She was fortunate (and smart) enough to begin saving in her twenties, so she could take maximum advantage of the power of compounding interest on her nest egg.
11) He’s not impressed that you drive an over-priced luxury car and live in a McMansion that’s two sizes too big for your family of four. Little about external “signals” of wealth actually matter to him.
And a little bonus, if you will: She doesn’t pay taxes which could have been avoided with a simple phone call to her New York Metro tax professional. She gets the advice, guidance, and expert assistance of a professional, and doesn’t waste her time trying to learn the tax code when there are those who have already put in thousands of hours of their life to do so.
And here’s to you joining these ranks in future years.
TriState Tax Resolution LLC