Not everyone in the average suburban neighborhood is living paycheck to paycheck. In “The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy,” Drs. Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko reveal that many of the people whom you probably think of as rich actually have very ordinary lifestyles. Through the numerous case studies in this book, you will get to know your rich neighbors who have flown under the radar. This book stops short of being an actual guide on how to become a millionaire. However, it is full of inspiration for the budding middle-income investor.
Drs. Stanley and Danko showcase how the glamorous lifestyles on television do not represent true wealth. It turns out that your millionaire neighbors do not tend to have very high incomes, and many hold blue-collar jobs. In fact, statistics show that people with high incomes generally spend more and save less. The authors are not just telling readers what they want to hear. They interviewed hundreds of millionaires as part of their research. Plus, their surveys reached over ten times as many respondents with high net worth, high incomes, or both. The main takeaway is that you cannot expect to be able to pick out a millionaire in a crowd.
The authors have arranged the statistics from their surveys in visually appealing charts. You will learn about the seven commonalities within this hidden class of wealthy investors. For example, they do not get help from their parents, so they tend to be frugal since they understand the value of a dollar. These millionaire neighbors know an opportunity when they see one. They are also active stock investors who focus on developing their retirement accounts first. Many even hire a financial team to help them. If you are a gig worker or making an average salary, you may feel inspired by this research.