This weekend, one of the moms from the park told me her two older kids had become obsessed with baseball games on TV. When their lack of productivity started to bug her, she asked them what was so fascinating about all that baseball.
“We want to be pros one day,” they told her, as though it was the most natural thing in the world, “so we are learning by watching the very best.” This, from two grade schoolers.
I though the concept was genius, so I decided to apply it to finance. Because apart from fat bank accounts, what really does set the very wealthy apart from the rest of us? What habits do they have in common that differs from the grand majority?
Here’s what I found.
- They are more likely to be business owners. Because let’s face it, while you can create a very nice life for yourself while on the company payroll, few employers will pay you enough to make you the next Bill Gates.
- They pay cash for their cars. Most people know that from an investment perspective, new, financed cars are some of the worst things you can get into, as their value drops like rocks during the first couple of years while your debt remains.
- They are smart about debt. Extremely wealthy people rarely carry balances on their credit cards – in fact, they are less than half as likely to be in credit card debt as the average person. They know that financing charges will eat your fortune faster than a herd of hungry lions an injured zebra colt.
- They donate to charity. Whether you believe in karma or not, helping those in need creates goodwill and a sense of generosity, which makes people more positive toward you. This promotes wealth.