The wealthy

Most rich people do not flaunt their wealth: They don't live in high-class neighborhoods or drive expensive cars. They look like you and me.

The rich have a net worth of above $1 million. Most rich people got wealthy through a simple combination of earning an income, saving for retirement, and spending wisely.

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The pseudo-affluent: If you look rich, you probably aren't

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They buy things that convey success. They want you to know just how much stuff they have by showing off their success.

The pseudo-affluent feel insecure about how they compare with the Joneses and the Smiths. They hold on to the belief that all economically successful people display their success through prestige products.

The pseudo-affluent generally:

  • They earn a high-income, but spend the majority of what they make.
  • Wear expensive suits or carry expensive purses.
  • Drive high-end luxury or sports cars.
  • Really believe that rich people act rich.

It does not mean that every person that drives a BMW pretends to be rich, but those who do spend the majority of high incomes spend it in a way to display their wealth.

Your neighbor might be secretly wealthy if:

  • They have an above-average understanding of finances: They may not be concerned about the looming recession, but calmly take about general atmosphere data points.
  • They read: The space in their home is prioritized more toward education than centered around television and entertainment.
  • They cook. A portion of their high income went toward a good kitchen that can facilitate cooking, companionship, and relaxation.
  • They have an uncluttered lifestyle: They do not own a lot of "stuff." Everything has a purpose and a place.
  • They care about their health: Many believe their health directly enables their ability to enjoy their wealth.
  • They never brag: They don't strut around and take notice of people admiring them.
  • They don't care what other people think: They often ignore fashion trends and pop culture.
  • You pay yourself first. You fund your retirement accounts before you pay anyone else.
  • You live in a reasonably-sized house.
  • You understand good debt vs. bad debt.
  • You live a sensible lifestyle that's within your means by making smart decisions with your money.
  • You are humble, yet confident.

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