First Southern National Bank

Want to be a Millionaire?

Who wants to be a millionaire?

Want to be a millionaire? There are not many in this world that would answer "no."

While the aspiration to become a millionaire may seem daunting, it is something that is being achieved by more and more of our neighbors every year.

The U.S. now has more than 11 million millionaire households, according to Spectrem Group. There are now 11.8 million Americans with a net worth of at least $1 million. Spectrem defines millionaire households as those with at least $1 million in investible assets, not including primary residence. And that number is growing.

So, who are these elite? Do they own Mercedes, Lexus and Range Rover automobiles? Do they live in homes with mega square footage? Well, in all honesty, not all millionaires look like this. In fact, many people that “look” like this may not be millionaires.

There was an excellent book written in 1996 by Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko called The Millionaire Next Door. It not only dispels the common stereotypes of millionaires, but it also identifies seven common traits of America’s wealthy.

On average, America’s millionaires don’t drive high end autos or live in palatial homes. They drive Ford F-150’s, or economical family cars and get nearly 10 years of usage out of them. They typically have lived in the same house for many years, wear modestly priced clothing and spend far less than they earn. They also typically live without a mortgage or any debt.

The average millionaire invests 20% of their annual income, versus the average American’s savings of less than five percent. 80% of millionaires made their money in one generation and only 20% had received more than 10% of their income from an inheritance.

When asked, “What does it really take to become a millionaire?”, Spanx founder Sara Blakely and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, both billionaire investors on ABC’s Shark Tank, had a simple answer. They both told MONEY that earning their first $1 million factored in several variables, such as keeping expenses to a minimum and avoiding debt, while keeping up aggressive savings strategies.

A recent Money Magazine article said, “with a growing economy comes more opportunity to earn, invest and save more — ways that can lead to that coveted millionaire title.”

The bottom line is the dedication and work to become a millionaire may not seem very exciting, especially in our “I want it now” society. It can also take some time to get there.

If you want to become a millionaire, it will take a lifestyle change for many people. This lifestyle change may mean delaying gratification and to truly determine “needs” verses “wants”. If you are willing to spend less than you make, purchase frugally, while investing the difference, you too can become a MILLIONAIRE!

Tim Hopper

Tim Hopper
Community President

(606) 348-2000 Ext: 10710