My father bought me the book The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas Stanley and William Danko several years ago as a part of my graduation present from college. I didn’t know it at the time, but this was probably the greatest present he ever gave me. At the time I just saw it as a book and it was just another book I probably wasn’t going to read.
Well, during the summer I came down with the swine flu and was basically stuck at home and in bed for over a week. During that time I didn’t have anything to do other than watch TV and that got boring really quick. I looked at my night stand table and laying on top was that book my dad had bought me – The Millionaire Next Door.
I picked up the book and read the cover and thought this might be interesting and so I started reading it. I thought it was going to be about how people like Donald Trump and others that are born into money became richer. I never thought that being rich with something I could ever experience. Most people grow up with a silver spoon in their mouth, I grew up with a wooden one.
My mother was very poor and we barely have enough money to put food on the table. I had become accustomed to living a very low key lifestyle and existence and basically was ingrained in me that I could never be something greater. I was very wrong. This book opened me up to the idea that anybody can learn to become financially literate and to turn their financial position completely around.
In the book Stanley and Danko weren’t listing people that are big and the press like Donald Trump or stuff you could read in books or on TV. they actually researched many millionaires and found out that the majority of them don’t live beyond their means and they learn to save money for a rainy day (and much more then that in most cases).
What we see as being rich may only be a mirage. The idea in the book of big hat – no cattle greatly exemplifies this. As I drive through my middle-class neighborhood and the lower class neighborhood next to ours I see exactly what the authors in this book were saying. Everyone is trying to keep up with the Joneses. It doesn’t matter if their house is falling apart or their lawn is unkempt, regardless they have to have that brand-new Mercedes-Benz in their driveway.
It’s amazing how I can drive through some of the worst neighborhoods in Charlotte North Carolina and see all brand-new cars in everyone’s driveways. what’s amazing here is that almost all these cars have serious loans on them and so to look the part of being wealthy visa people are paying huge interest charges, payments, higher insurance premiums, much higher taxes and more. As they say in the book, The Millionaire Next Door, they are living beyond their means.
One of the key rules or definitions of these millionaires in the book is to understand the difference between wealth, income and debt. The majority of Americans may have good incomes but they’re spending more than ever, have high debt loads (especially credit card debt) and essentially have little or no wealth. They may drive around in a very nice-looking car, but as anyone can tell by watching the show Operation Repo on the Tru TV channel, these nice cars get repossessed just as fast as any other one.
The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas Stanley and William Danko is a great book and takes a real look into what millionaires drive, invest in and choose as businesses. you would be surprised at some of the answers of what the rich in this country really do. I recommend this book to everyone – especially all those that are currently trying to pick themselves back up after this terrible recession. It is a fact that keeping up with the Joneses and pure greed caused this recession. Learn how the rich become financially free by reading The Millionaire Next Door – it is a real eye opener!