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Would I be rich if I earned $150k a year? I think so :)

by J. Money on Friday, September 5, 2008

rich is rad.If not, an even $200k certainly would do it. What about for you? I have to give a big shout out to Living Almost Large as she posted something similar the other day and it really got me thinking (site now gone).

She adds a huge political twist on it, but I’d totally recommend it if you find this topic interesting – at least for the pretty passionate comments being thrown around on it! (you say one thing about Obama or McCain that someone doesn’t like and they are allllllll over it..haha)

But what type of salary or other income would it take for YOU to feel “rich”? Have you ever thought about it? I have the tendency to consider one’s net worth to determine that, so it was pretty cool to think a bit differently here. I think for me, I’d have to bring home somewhere in the $150-$200k range if I really didn’t wanna have to worry about money again.

But to be honest, I really don’t think a set salary determines whether you’re wealthy or not. It’s HOW you spend it, or not spend it, that’s the determining factor.

There are plenty of people blowing through $200k-$300k a year on their lavish lifestyles, yet barely saving a few pennies. I wouldn’t consider them rich, even though they may look it (The Millionaire Next Door anyone?). At the same time, there are a select few making $500k+ and saving 90% of it while living comfortably and in peaceful bliss. Your salary/other income definitely plays a big role, but you have to account for where it goes to.

Then we have those crazy frugal bastards (meant in the most loving and sincere way possible) who make $60k and invest 20-30% into their already heavily fortified nest egg! So while they may not be rich at the present time, I guarantee they’ll make it faster than those a lot of those non-saving fools making twice that.

As LAL also mentioned, $250k will go a lot farther in places like Smallville, USA than New York City or LA. So that has to be considered as well. I can tell you that splitting a bachelor pad in NYC with 5 people cost me more way more than my old abode in Fairfax, VA which I only split with one person. The nightlife was totally different, but so was the fatness of my wallet ;)

Does all of this really matter though? Not really….unless someone’s about to pay us our “ideal” amount anytime soon, you can go ahead and file it away in your “good to have on hand, just in case” folder. And I’m still gonna have to base my views on the rich depending on what their net worth is since it shows whether someone’s saving/investing or just spending it all away.

Definitely leave a comment with your magic # though, as ya never know who’ll be reading it! Plus i hear that if you concentrate on it long enough, you can force it to happen circa “The Secret” kinda stuff. But you can think what you want ;)


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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Stephan May 3, 2010 at 12:37 pm

100k is my number, and i know its a dream at this point, but every dream has a plan behind it. I know that if i do get to 100k, i will know what to do with it to make sure i dont waste the opportunity presented to myself.

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2 J. Money May 4, 2010 at 1:11 pm

I like the way you think! You’ve got to have dreams brotha – and $100k is def. doable :) It’s unfortunate all the other comments here were wiped away from our Wordpress move as there was some great discussions going on….some saying you needed $300k+, and others saying you can be rich w/out much at all. Pretty interesting stuff…

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3 a_dad May 4, 2010 at 7:32 pm

I make about 150K in the bay area, and can tell you that I am not rich. Nor do I look it. We have a semi nice house which is NOT lanscaped, and no pool. We have a 4 year old bmw (very nice, 450/mo) SUPER nice boat (another 400/mo) and a paid off 10yo SUV. Our house payment is like 2800/mo. 4 kids, 15-22 one in college, paying half her tuition as we go, as we never saved. She works. Wife doesn’t.
Life is good, we can eat out whenever we want, vacation once every 2-3 years, but I would say that we are barely living within our means, and not getting a whole lot for that. The small stuff, computers, electronics–all the small things we can have whatever we like. But the big things, new cars, big vacations every year, no way. Want to buy my second daughter a new car for her 18th, but just did the math and I cannot. 150,000 doesn’t go as far as you think, when you don’t save and invest

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4 J. Money May 5, 2010 at 12:34 pm

yeah – the “when you don’t save and invest” being the important part there ;) if I were making $150k i could guarantee that I would invest at LEAST $75k of that ASAP – thus dramatically increases my “richness.” But I also don’t have kids right now, so if you ask me in 5-10 years I’m sure my # would be much higher ;)

Thx for dropping by sharing!

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