Are you a $30K Millionaire?

Are you a $30K Millionaire?  No, I don’t mean $30 billion, I mean are you someone who makes $30K a year but acts like a millionaire?  It’s ok if you’re that person.  Hell, we’ve all done stupid things (if you’re reading this here, I am assuming you DON’T want to pretend like a millionaire but rather BE one).  I’d say that my car purchase, currently the bane of my personal cash flow, was me acting like a $30K millionaire.  But REALLY is a $30K millionaire?  Is this an actual thing?  Is there, perhaps, a website or article regarding them?

Courtesy of Sergey Melkonov

Courtesy of Sergey Melkonov

I first heard about the so called $30K millionaires several years ago, when I was living in Texas.  It was common there to meet plenty of young men that were living well above their means, working an OK job during the day while partying at night.  As you might guess, they financed or leased everything.  It drives right to the heart of financial illiteracy.  In Texas, these guys were common.  They’d just gotten out of college, got their first job and wanted to appear successful.  $30K doesn’t get very far but when you live at home and you lease that BMW, you can look pretty goddamn slick.

Moving to LA, I’ve experienced this even more.  When asked about it, most people will just say something along the lines of “Fake it till you make it.”  Now, don’t get me wrong, sometimes this can be a good thing!  You visualize your goal and you put yourself in a position to achieve it.  That’s a huge part of the psychology of athletics and success on several levels, including business and personal.  But when we’re talking about achieving financial independence or becoming an actual millionaire, I think these guys might be missing the point just a little bit.  They want so bad to appear rich and powerful that they’re willing to completely destroy their financial future for it.  All because in their mind, that’s the only way to make it.

So, are you, my readers, $30K millionaires?  If you answer yes to at least two of the following questions, you might be one:

1.  Do you go to clubs or lounges (not regular bars) more than once or twice a week?

2.  Is your car leased or financed with next to no money down, despite being a luxury car?

3.  Do you have more than two credit cards, all of which have a balance on them?

4.  Are you living paycheck to paycheck?

5.  Do you spend more money on clothing, expensive dinners, and clubbing than rent?  That is, if you pay rent.  If you live at home, just assume you paid rent.

Now, let me clear, being a $30K millionaire doesn’t make you a douchebag, like the Dallas Morning Observer article was talking about.  That is, obviously, a very specific and rare breed of $30K millionaire.  But that doesn’t mean you aren’t living beyond your means trying to create an image for yourself.  It doesn’t have to be a millionaire image.  It can just be the image of moderate success.  Remember, I was guilty of this as well.  I had credit card debt that I kept revolving.  And I purchased my car in a panic driven state, put next to no money down and now have a monthly cash flow drain that makes me furious every time.

So, who out there is a $30K millionaire or a recovering one?  Let me know your story!  You know mine and I think it’s time for you to share.  Leave your stories in the comments or feel free to send me an email.

7 thoughts on “Are you a $30K Millionaire?

  1. It’s gotten to the point where I think most people are living beyond their means. You look at people with with huge houses and brand new cars and only one spouse working it’s hard to image how they can afford it….and that’s just it, they can’t.

    I agree that you have to visualize your goals, but that doesn’t mean you have to own the item. People think that they deserve things just because when that isn’t the case at all.

    • This whole “Keepin up with the Joneses” thing is getting out of hand, I completely agree. I know someone who took home $121K in after tax income last year. He spent $120,450 of that income. I don’t even know where to begin when I look at those numbers, I’m just dumbfounded!

  2. A friend of mine and I were talking about this recently. He works at a place that has a few hundred employees, many of them making $15k-30k a year. He was telling me how all of them have brand new iphones, nice clothes, and drive new cars. I make more than that, but I look poor. I have a basic android phone, drive a 20 year old pickup, and shop at tj maxx.

    • See, you’re thinking the right way. I’ve never understood how people can live like that, spending every penny they make, leveraging themselves like crazy.

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