Wouldn’t it be great to be a millionaire? Just imagine what your life could be if you suddenly inherited a fortune from a long-lost uncle. It’s everyone’s dream!
But the reality is that most millionaires who inherit their cash tend to lose their fortunes rather quickly. As Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko discovered while doing research for their book “The Millionaire Next Door”, the people most likely to maintain a millionaire status are those who are frugal and save bit by bit every day.
One great example of a man with a fortune who practices frugal living, is the former president, Jimmy Carter.
Carter’s Surprisingly Cheap Lifestyle
While Carter previously enjoyed a luxurious life in his time at the White House, his current home is much more humble. Carter’s current residence is a simple, two-bedroom ranch in rural Plains, Georgia, assessed at just $167,000.
Along with his modest home, Carter also keeps his costs low in other areas of his life. He eats on paper plates, drinks bargain-brand wine, and even makes his own yogurt. He is also a regular customer at his local Dollar General store and often flies commercial when traveling by airplane.
While his living situation seems to suggest that his earnings are rather slim, nothing could be further from the truth. Carter receives an annual pension of $210,700, as all former presidents do, as well as an extra $230,000 total of allowances over the years for things such as travel and office space. Carter has also received recent income from books he has published, including some reflections on his years as president as well as a children’s book.
While other former presidents take deluxe summer vacations and purchase extravagant real estates, Carter has chosen to keep his life simple. As Carter himself puts it, “It just never had been my ambition to be rich.”
Budgeting Tips For Future Millionaires
Who wants to be a millionaire? While it may seem like a distant dream, anything is possible with a little time and dedication. Here are five simple tips that you can apply now to get on your way to grow your own fortune.
1. Record Your Expenses
The very first step to good budgeting is to become familiar with your expenses. Start by tracking all of your expenses for one month. Once you’ve collected all the numbers, sort them into categories such as gas, groceries, rent, clothes, etc. This will give you a good idea about how much your spending in each area of your life and where you may be able to make cuts.
2. Organize Your Personal Budget
Once you know how much you spend in a month you can tailor a budget to your personal needs. Give yourself a set number of dollars per month for each category, making sure of course that your expenses can easily measure up to your income.
3. Make A Savings Plan
Once you have your necessary costs calculated into your budget, create a savings category. A good rule of thumb is to save at least 10 percent of your income. If your current expenses don’t allow for this much, you may need to reevaluate and cut some more expenses. This is where differentiating between your needs and wants becomes crucial.
4. Choose Something To Save For
Find something you’d like to have in the future and keep it in mind. It can be short-term, such as a summer vacation trip, or long-term, such as a college fund for your kid. Sometimes the simple act of having something to save for can make all the difference.
5. Review Your Budget Regularly
Take time at least once a month to go over your expenses and check your progress. This is crucial if you really want to stick to your savings plan. The less often you go over your budget the easier it is to neglect your goals.
The More You Save, The More You’ll Celebrate!
Remember, when it comes to gaining a fortune, it’s the slow and steady who win the race! Practice these budgeting tips until it becomes a habit, and before you know it, you’ll be rolling in your own dough! Happy saving!