Being "Rich"

Many people want to be “rich” in the future so they can do things like: Travel, buy nice cars, support family etc…who wouldn’t?

I believe “rich” means many different things to different people. Here are a few materialistic wants I feel would make me “rich” :

  • Being able to travel to Dubai and lodge, dine and recreate in the Hotel Burj Al Arab for a week with family and friends in a 3-bedroom suite.
  • Being able to buy a $40,000 car without really denting my disposable income.
  • Being prepared and able to buy a $300,000 home in cash.
  • Have enough disposable income to comfortably shop at Nordstrom and other higher-end retailers with a personal shopper.
  • Be financially prepared for all the unexpected expenses life throws my way.
  • Eat Ramen Noodles when I know I can easily afford a 5-star meal.

I’ll share a joke:

“The American Dream is a German Car an Italian wardrobe and a Swiss bank account. “

I think the fun of becoming rich is getting there. I like a good challenge. So until I can do all of the above without breaking a financial sweat, I will be working my a$$ of to achieve it.

Blog posted on: April 12, 2005

39 comments on “Being "Rich"

  1. Anonymous

    I would like to know where you can find a decent home for $300,000 nowadays.

    Then again, I guess that prices in my part of the country are wacky.

  2. Anonymous

    Right after I graduated from college, I was in “materialistic” mode…just wanted to make $ and acquire “things.”

    Then I was in Hurricane Andrew. Changed my life. I learned in one day that “things” are just that…things…that can be taken from you in a heartbeat.

    So I no longer seek to acquire “things”…instead, I seek to acquire experiences, which last much longer and leave a lasting impression on myself and those around me.

    That is why I work and make $…so that I can give my family experiences.

  3. Johnie

    I was watching some show on the History Channel about lottery winners a while back. One guy, who had won $93 million, was talking about how he makes about $5,000/day just on interest alone. He was also saying that he doesn’t think twice about spending $20K on something b/c he knows that all he has to do is not spend anything for the next 4 days. [I also think he's a little crazy in the head...but that's another story]

    One of the things that I’ve always thought about is at what point are you rich? I’ve come to the personal conclusion that $3M would be a good rule to go by. Basically the way I’ve figured it if you even just park it in a bank account, that’s about $6000/month in interest. That’s surely enough to live on/reinvest in other things.

    But who knows…

  4. Neville

    I made very sure to write “materialistic wants” in bold because there are so many more things in life which you cannot buy.

    I realize that no matter how “bad” my life may seem at times, I am young, healthy, insured, have a great family, and can afford almost any surprise that comes my way. At the end of the day I never have to worry about where my next meal will come from or how I will pay the rent.

    Needless to say, I am NOT only about gaining material wealth. But when I am young and determined, I would like to set myself up for a comfortable life when I am older.

    I would HATE to win the lottery. It wouldn’t feel as if you earned it. I don’t know about some people, but that would never satisfy me, no matter how much money.
    Wasn’t there a survey done that showed most lottery winners were not significantly happier after their winnings?

    1. lewis

      I’m not sure if their lack of happiness comes from not having earned it. I think perhaps some of it might come from having friends and family and strangers trying to fleece you, losing friends and family who tried to fleece you and the devastation that brings, poor financial management skillsa and the return to being back to where you started.

  5. Johnie

    I didn’t mean to imply that I would like to win the lottery. Like you, I don’t think that is very satisfying. The point of my story was rather that with a certain amount of money, you will have enough to live off the interest. The question is how much that is.

    Incidentally, that show I was watching talked about how depressed some of these guys were. Lost their friends, everyone asking them for money, etc, etc…

    1. lewis

      I would love to win the lottery. I’ve already broke my back earning money to build my business and retire. A lottery win would be a sweet bonus and would all be invested.

      I wouldn’t change anything. I would still buy the truck and trailer I am planning to spend my summers in to travel around and visit family and friends in Canada. I would keep wintering in Australia and travelling in between. I would keep working through my bucket list.

  6. ncnblog

    Great post, as usual. I think the best thing about thinking about retirement is THINKING about retirement. So many people simply assume that they, or the government, will be set for retirement at a certain age. The cool thing about being young and interested in finances is that, while we may or may not attain our goals in the exact manner in which we were planning, we HAVE GOALS. We are thinking about the things most people just wonder about. We are planning, shaping, and forging our future. Not to be too over-the-top, but we are doing what Americans came to America to do… seek, plan, and stretch for our destinies…
    check my blog at

  7. Manny

    Hey Nev,

    I have two great quotes to share with you from the book “The Richest Man in Babylon.”

    “Money is the medium by which earthly success is measured.”

    “Money makes possible the enjoyment of the best the earth affords.”

    Both quotes couldn’t be more true.

  8. Neville

    I’m still reminded of what Dave Liniger, founder of RE/MAX said in a speech he gave:

    “I’ve been miserble when poor and I’ve been miserable when rich. Let me tell ya, it’s a hell of a lot better being miserable when rich.”

  9. David

    Why would you pay cash for a home? You are better off getting an interest only loan (Preferably a Cash Flow Arm) and investing the $300,000.00
    dollars in an Equity Indexed Universal Life Plan. 30 years from now you would be a multi millionaire.

  10. Neville

    I would pay cash for a home for a piece of mind. I like being 100% debt free and not having to pay monthly bills.

    Perhaps I may not pay cash on my first home, but I will definitely pay the home off quicker than the standard mortgage time.


  11. Anonymous

    Interestingly enough, for a house less than 100k it’s better to pay the whole house and reinvest what your house payment would have been. The calculations are complicated, but it comes down to an advantage of about 1% more return every year. I’m currently 21 and I wouldn’t buy a house more than 100k because I don’t need it. I could currently afford a 200k morgage but it only puts me in dept. Why pay all that interest and deal with a huge house hassles right after finishing college and being single? I’ve recently bought a 3 bedroom, 1000 sq feet and it’s more space than I need. Unfortunately, I’ve followed an aproach that was mentioned earlier. I’ve got an interest only loan when I could have paid cash. The previously mentioned calculation was made after I’ve already purchased shares in a mutual fund with a front load. Now I have to wait a while until it’s worth getting that money out. Anyway, I can still pay everything in 10 yrs without that money. Cool blog, by the way, but according to “The millionaire next door” book, your reasons for becoming rich are inconsistent with most millionaires today. I would recommend reading that book because it’s interesting and not very long. There’s a fine line between “frugality” and beeing cheap. Only few walk it, and they all succeed.

  12. Neville

    While I agree on living below your means, I do not think I fit the average profile of someone reading “The Millionaire Next Door”

    Not really my style.

    If you are looking for savings tips, frugal living methods etc, I would highly reccommend you to Dawn at:

  13. Gully

    I put the game this way, everyone wants to be rich, no one here does not want to be poor or become poor. Rich gives you a better life. People say money is the root of all evil, wrong, being a slave to money makes the money evil. That’s why the rich talk shit while the poor lose and explain and get lame to the blame game.


  14. Anonymous

    With our current lifes money has been set as the goal and we have been ‘educated’ to reach that. Now of course, the teachers realize the targets have to be set higher everytime to even get near this goal so that one get going.Eh, I get going, but how’s my life ? I’d say for this to go further, honour and respect must come back, otherwise, let’s just go poor.

  15. Anonymous

    Enjoy this blog- came on it by chance.

    I did the effort, went the journey to money/security.
    (Rather measured and slowly over time. I always required respect for myself and gave it back when I could.)

    I agree, “it is better to be miserable rich…than miserable
    poor”! Being poor is an enormous
    My personal standard is: living a comfortable life… without bloated consumption. I realize material things can be a heavy weight and responsibility.
    The best part of my life was working for the reward and enjoying the thrill of the “journey”. The act of accomplishing it by my own wit.

    Best of luck to all of you in your journey!

  16. Anonymous

    I am rich and got there the usual ways: hard work, a savings habit, a prudent spouse, and the passage of time. Being rich is great! I don’t have to worry about my wife being well cared for should I die before her. I was able to spend six years building our house by hand without fretting about the time or money. When I want to help people, I can, and do. Our neighbors don’t see that we are wealthy because we drive modest cars, don’t brag, and lead quiet lives. We are very happy together and were happy before we became wealthy, so I can’t comment on whether money buys happiness: we’ve always had happiness from the time we met, 40 years ago. One need not be a glutton with wealth, anymore than we are gluttons in breathing simply because it is there. Best of all, nobody can make you take it with you when you die. Excess money can always be left behind to help someone else.

  17. Anonymous

    money can make you happy if you have none. but once yoou have enough to eat and lead a fairly comfortable life with some struggle, increases in wealth bring less happiness. experiences like good vacations and fishing occasinally through week are rich.

  18. Anonymous

    I’m rich. A year ago I was broke. Now I’m 24 making 7 figures. I was happier a year ago.

    I lost my dreams and then I lost the woman I loved. I dreamed of making it big. And when I made it, I had nothing left to strive for. Now I have no passion.

    The wealth and power has absorbed my soul. I’ve got nothing but a big bank account. Being rich makes living easier, but it won’t make your life better. It won’t save you.

  19. Kita

    It was interesting reading everyone’s blog. The saddest blog was the guy that says he is rich and lost his lover, lost his quest in life…if your post is true, you need some coaching or other professional help.

    Being rich does not make you happy or sad, but as others have quoted, I would rather be rich and miserable than poor and miserable.

    A good person with a good heart will attract many people, good and bad. Add a zest for money and to that formula and the world is yours. I cant remember where I read it, but I read, “Money makes you more of what you are!” I found this to be so true. My husband was an A**hole before we had money and he is a bigger A**hole now! I was very giving even when we had little ourselves, and I can give on a greater level now. We have a ways to go before I would consider us to be “rich” but I enjoy the freedom and peace of mind money brings. I look forward to continued wealth and more money than we count in the future.

    Thank you, Lord, for the money, the heart and passion for life and others so that I see the good money does.

  20. Anonymous

    “the wealthy guy writes the rich guys check” theres a difference in being Wealthy and being Rich.
    Money just makes things happen faster,Anything you can think of has been done. There is no shortage, don’t be fooled. It is possible to get yourself in money…half of it lies in your talents, the other half lies in lies.

  21. Anonymous

    Probably i’m not rich in wealth, but i’m trying to be rich in experience and knowledge,which are more important.All of these are my real wealth.

  22. David

    I really want to study psychology but I know it wont make me rich and i want to be rich. Instead I can study something else that will make me rich and try to like it….anybody has some advice?

  23. Vincent

    To the guy who is rich and has no passion I say this — be patient. It takes a few years to really adjust to newfound wealth… especially when it comes easily. Your passions will inevitably return, only this time there will be nothing to hold you back.

    Having grown up “poor” (lower middle-class) I absolutely love being rich (inheritance). I went through years of guilt and self-loathing because all my friends and family are struggling, but I help them out and live a very modest lifestyle.

    The best guage (I think) to determine whether you’re “rich” or not is this — Do you have to work? If not, you’re rich.

  24. Anonymous

    Well, from personal experience, I’d found that money (not working hard for money, per se) did lead to happiness.

    When I was a student, I wasn’t experiencing continuous happiness because although I’d enjoyed my studies, I didn’t enjoy having to work an additional 20 hours a week to cover the gap between my scholarship and my living expenses. When I’d graduated and got a good job, I was able to take classes at night, getting my company to pay for it and I was quite happy. I had no school debts and I was taking classes *supposedly free* of charge. That was my first increment of money. *Realize, I was tethered to this company, for the benefits, so it wasn’t really all that free. Nonetheless, I’d made the most of the situation.

    Next, was my career switch where I’d doubled my income. At that point, I could take classes, travel, etc, without needing a company’s sponsorship. That was an even greater addition to my state of contentment.

    So all and all, when I look back, I see no incongruities between adding money, and increasing freedom/options, and subsequent happiness.

    If and when I become financially independent and no longer require a job, I can still do work (consulting, independent research, etc), and experience a moment by moment continuum of happiness. And yes, five star hotels and business class travel are included.

  25. Anonymous

    For those out there that are “Rich”, I have a question, a friend of mine was disabled in a car accident and came into alot of money and I have watched it completely destroy her life in the form of people trying to get at it, and she keeps giving it to them. How do you make this cycle stop? I am getting concerned.

  26. mihai

    I guess that rich people think different than poor people, not just about money, but about life and experiences.

    I believe rich people usually pursue their dreams, read a lot, are curious, and they are still kids.

    Yet a poor person will always try to look damn smart, spend too much on shitty things and will always hate rich people.

    I guess that if you do what you like, you will feel that you are rich. Money is a different matter; if you do what you like, certainly money will follow you.


  27. cjung

    i didnt read all these comments but i had to laugh at this blog. if you're lookign to buy a 300k home, you arent rich. likewise, if you'd like a 40k car, you also are not rich.

  28. Anonymous

    Life is full of dreams, but if you are rich don't show it , live a normal life. Health and small things are the best two part of life. I would not tell you if I am poor or rich , I can afford a few things in life. I would never pay off a home, no matter if it cost 100,000 or 10 million because you never take it with you. Life is really short so just enjoy it. Spend your money wisely and invest the rest. Success is a long journey for those aim for it.

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  30. log

    my childhood was great. my dad was ceo of spirit aerosystems, and i got anything i wanted. now im older and wealthy, but when dad dies i get 120 million in inheritance. fuckin poor people


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