What If “Rich” People Live Below their Means?

What if rich people live below their means?

Would they still live in a McMansion and have a lot of money and savings left over? Would they still eat out at the swankiest restaurants in town and be debt-free? Would they still take vacations at some private tropical island and not face foreclosure?

The answer to all the above questions would be a resounding yes.

All too often, the rich and grand are associated with huge mansions, fine caviar, yachts that would rather be miniature cruise lines, and private jets. All too often.


And didn’t I mention huge mansions? (photo by Allan Lee)

You’d think that they’d dine on their gold-gilded ice cream sundaes instead of store-brand ice pops. You think that they’d go to faraway lands instead of their attractions in their own areas, cities, or hometowns. You think that they’d drink fancy wine instead of water mixed with powdered drink mix.

True and not true.

Why are parts of the statements made on those making 6 to 10-figure incomes false (especially with those gradually getting wealthy or had done that)? Well, that’s because most of those people are actually careful on spending. I know what you’re really thinking. Those who’d spend lavishly would not spend something as silly and mundane as buying a home that would be for “normal” people like so many of us instead of a house with a huge pool.


Not all people with high incomes own watercraft like this. (photo by Maxine Simpson)

It’s really possible to have millions or even billions of dollars and still shop at the thrift stores, buy a manageable house, and clip coupons. Such a frugal lifestyle is neither just for those trying to make ends meet nor those with good incomes but on shoestring budgets.

Take the people in the “super-wealthy” category in Florida, for instance. This state is a huge staycation destination. What I mean by that is that they don’t need to fly to the beach or drive a thousand miles to what’s there in it.

Some people of the type live at most 100 miles from Walt Disney World and the rest of the Orlando area. And some look for discounts on theme park tickets and other attractions (Yes, even here in the state of popular theme parks we have free travel destinations!) that would have cost them if they are not living frugally.

Who says that the rich and famous can’t use coupons to save money? Well one celebrity did. She was born and raised poor, and though she was a “star” making a lot of money, she lived by discounts like most everyone else. She took her reusable bag to the supermarket, clipped dry cleaning coupons, and went to the stores on discount days.

Even billionaires live like us. One of them lived in a modest home in the Midwest. When it was bought, it didn’t cost millions. Amazing.

Still don’t believe me? Here’s a scenario.

Pretend that you are moving to New Jersey and you have at least $5-$10 million dollars on hand. You choose to live in something simpler like an apartment or 2-bedroom house. (No – I don’t mean luxury condos or penthouses.)

When moved in (and after you sold some of your stuff in a garage sale, of which you allocated most of the revenue to savings), you live a live that ordinary, money-wise people do. New Jersey is very notorious for high taxes, tolls, and living costs, but as long as you keep that lifestyle up, you’re more than financially OK!

So there you have it. Even if you are earning ten thousands, hundred thousands, millions, or even billions a year, you can still manage your money and be wise about spending. Despite the myths made on the highest earners, it’s really not that  unusual for them to spend wisely!

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