I’ve been studying the daily habits of the rich and poor since 2004. I’ve gathered an enormous amount of data on both groups and this data has been reported on by the media in 27 countries around the world.
The habits of the rich are not exactly what you might think. In my books, Rich Habits, Rich Kids, Change Your Habits Change Your Life, Rich Habits Poor Habits and Effort-Less Wealth, I share many of the more little-known rich people habits.
One of the categories I found to be eye opening was their spending habits. Below is a small sampling from my books of some of the unusual spending habits of the rich:
- 8% shopped at Goodwill stores
- 20% used coupons
- 64% said they lived in a modest, middle-class home
- 28% mowed their own lawn to save money
- 44% only purchased used cars
- 19% managed their investments themselves – they did not use financial advisors in order to save money
- 60% said they were frugal with their money
- 81% used credit cards that offered reward dollars. This way they could get something for free
- 41% spent less than $3,000 on their annual vacation
Some of these spending habits, to me at least, are shocking because they seem incongruous. Such as shopping at Goodwill stores, or using coupons, or purchasing only used cars. Why would the rich bother with these things when they have more money than they can spend in their lifetime?
The answer is because habits are hard to break.
Even Warren Buffet admits that he’s frugal with his money. He prefers eating at home every night because, well, that’s much less expensive. Frugal spending habits of self-made millionaires were forged in the days before they became rich. And frugal habits stick.
Even for rich people who no longer need to be frugal.
Tom Corley is an accountant, financial planner and author of “Rich Kids: How to Raise Our Children to Be Happy and Successful in Life”, Effort-Less Wealth, Change Your Habits Change Your Life, Rich Habits Poor Habits and “Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals.”