Monday, August 07, 2006

Get Rich Slow

I've been reading The Millionaire Next Door. Despite the alluring title, it's an unnervingly practical book. The authors, Thomas J. Stanley, Ph.D. and William D. Danko, Ph.D., have been studying millionaires for over 20 years, and they make a compelling case for getting rich slowly.

Although it's easy to dream of winning the lottery, inheriting a million dollars, or otherwise getting rich without effort, Stanley and Danko make it clear that there are few shortcuts to wealth. Among their more interesting findings:

-Most of America's millionaires don't flaunt their wealth.
-They live in working-class neighborhoods.
-They drive moderately-priced cars, often purchased used.
-They are more likely to shop at JC Penney or Sears than at Saks.
-Many millionaires are entrepreneurs.
-Many do not have college degrees.

People who become the millionaire next door tend to:
-Have a budget.
-Spend less than they earn.
-Track their expenditures.
-Have concrete goals for the future.

Stay with me now-- do you, or do you not, want to retire comfortably? If not, then you're on the wrong blog. If you do want to retire without the spectres of diminishing Social Security and disappearing pensions clouding your last days, read on.

Look back at the characteristics of The Millionaire Next Door as outlined above. Not very exciting, eh? Obviously, these wealthy people are not the Gucci-wearing, leased-Jaguar-driving, champagne-swilling crowd. They probably eat their Brie-- if they've ever heard of it-- on a plain old Saltine cracker. Yet according to Stanley and Danko, these sensible people don't have a lot of worries.

Compared to the high-consumption crowd, the millionaires don't spend much time worrying over shrinking social welfare programs or how to make ends meet. They've chosen a lifestyle that allows them to live comfortably, and retire with all the money they'll ever need. Rather than keeping up with the Jones's, they've focused on keeping up their bank accounts. The wise millionaires know it's hard to enjoy life when you can't make ends meet.

I recommend reading The Millionaire Next Door. It may change your life, or it may just let you know what you're doing right. Either way, it's worth reading.

Get a Grip!


Blogger Millionaire Mommy Next Door said...

Nice summary of this book, Janice. As I read your post, my head kept nodding yes, yes, yes, that sounds like me. Becoming a millionaire really is as easy as it sounds here. Just take your time and be mindful.

Take a look at the author's other books, Millionaire Woman ND and The Millionaire Mind. All provide great data and insight.

11:59 PM  

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