Frugal Millionaires: The Thrifty Money Habits of the 1%

Private Plane

While the press laps up reports on how much Kimye’s wedding cost or how dot-com millionaires spend ridiculous amounts of money, they don’t often focus on millionaires who live like normal people.

We’re talking about those members of the 1% who still shop sales, clip coupons and refuse to pay full price for anything.

To learn more about they’ve earned and maintained their fortunes, the New York Times spoke to a number of millionaires next door, whose wealth ranges from a few million to $10.86 million. Here are some of the most interesting habits these people had in common.

They Take Saving Seriously

The millionaires interviewed had earned their money through saving and investing, not by inheriting it, though many earned healthy salaries.

“They’ve come from the middle class, the working class, and they still believe they’re part of the 99 percent, no matter what, because that’s how they identify themselves,” Paula Polito, chief client strategy officer at UBS Wealth Management Americas, told the Times.

These self-made millionaires picked up saving habits through their lifetimes. Though they’re now financially secure, they maintain those healthy money habits.

Many of the millionaires interviewed buy inexpensive cars and drive them for a long time. They also live in smaller houses, buy all their clothing on sale and even darn their own socks.

They Prioritize Their Spending

While several of the millionaires mentioned big purchases, they emphasized how they specifically chose expenditures that were important to them.

For example, one couple purchased the empty lots next to their home so they could keep their privacy. Another couple said they’ll buy art when they’re on vacation. In fact, many couples said they don’t regret splurging on their vacations.

By being strategic with their spending, these former 99-percenters were able to catapult themselves into the upper echelon of wealth in America.

Want to know the full story? Read more about their frugal habits in the New York Times.

Your Turn: What money habits would you retain if you were a millionaire? Or do you think you’d be ready to live large?

Rachel Kaufman may or may not be two dozen hamsters masquerading as one human in a trench coat.