Friday, August 29, 2008

10 Things Millionaires Won't Tell You

1. "You may think I'm rich, but I don't." While $1 million was a tidy sum three decades ago, you'd need $3.6 million for the same purchasing power today. So what does it take to feel truly rich? The magic number is $23 million, according to Fidelity.

2. "I shop at Wal-Mart..."

3.    "...but I didn't get rich by skimping on lattes." So how do you join the millionaires' club? You could buy stocks or real estate, play the slots in Vegas — or take the most common path: running your own business. That's how half of all millionaires made their money, according to the AmEx/Harrison survey. About a third had a professional practice or worked in the corporate world; only 3 percent inherited their wealth.

4.  "I have a concierge for everything.

5. "You don't get rich by being nice."

6. "Taxes are for little people."
The wealthy tend to derive a higher portion of their income from dividends and capital gains, which are taxed at lower rates than wages (15 percent for long-term capital gains versus 25 percent for middle-class wages). Also, high-income earners pay Social Security tax only on their first $97,500 of income.
But the big savings come from owning a business and deducting everything related to it.

7. "I was a B student."
According to the book "The Millionaire Mind," the median college grade point average for millionaires is 2.9, and the average SAT score is 1190 — hardly Harvard material.

8. "Like my Ferrari? It's a rental."
Why spend $3,000 on a Versace bag that'll be out of style as soon as next season when you can rent it for $175 a month? For that matter, why blow $250,000 on a Ferrari when for $25,000 it can be yours for a few weekends a year?

9. "Turns out money can buy happiness."
It may not be comforting to folks who aren't minting cash, but the rich really are different. "There's no group in America that's happier than the wealthy," says Taylor, of the Harrison Group. Roughly 70 percent of millionaires say that money"created" more happiness for them, he notes. "People experience their day very differently when they have a lot of money," Stevenson says.

10. "You worry about the Joneses — I worry about keeping up with the Trumps."
"Millionaires are always looking up," says Schiff, "and think it's better up there."
Posted by Corey of Project Liberty

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