If you ask most people “What would you do with a million dollars?”, they would give answers like:
- Buy my dream car
- Buy my dream boat
- Buy my dream house
- Go on my dream vacation
- All of the above
This list of answers is, of course, why these folks don’t already have a million dollars. They are too focused on pleasures and not things that really matter long term. Sigh.
Anyone who already has money would give you pretty much one answer to the million dollar question… they would save/invest the money and let it grow. They would tell you once invested, they could (if they wanted to) spend roughly $40,000 per year of this money without it ever depleting (the 4% rule).
Necessities, Not Things
Let’s get back to the main point of my post today. The biggest benefit of wealth…
The biggest benefit of wealth is being able to easily afford necessities. It’s not about buying things (like fancy cars).
Let that sink in for a moment (I’ll wait)…
Read that benefit line again… The biggest benefit of wealth is being able to easily afford necessities.
When Ms. Hobo and I shop for groceries, we don’t really have a budget. If we want it, we buy it. If we want organic, we buy it. Those fancy oranges that are $2 each… I’ll take 10 please. We don’t look at prices, because a few dollars more here or there on groceries simply doesn’t affect us financially anymore.
If we have any kind of car trouble we pay to get it fixed. Well, most of the time (my power sun roof on my used 2013 Ford F150 Platinum broke a couple of years ago — Ford wanted $2000 to fix it… I disconnected the power to the sunroof and sealed the window with clear silicone caulk).
In general though, if something breaks, we pay to get it fixed (plumbing, electrical, whatever). It’s no big deal. To me, that’s easily the biggest benefit of having wealth… I don’t worry about any of life’s typical emergencies (which when you’re dependent on it becomes a necessity).
Well Maybe Some Things That Aren’t Necessities
Nope, still no fancy cars or boats…
I’ve been using LED bulbs in the house for a number of years. If you’ve bought these over the last 10 years or so, you know LED technology keeps changing. I got tired of all the different light variances in the house, so I recently paid about $6000 to have all the lights in the house, inside and out, replaced with modern LED lights (the ones that last 30 years). No more changing light bulbs for me! And now all the lights match.
Here in Texas you may have recently heard about a freak Winter freeze which caused a lot of power outages in the state for almost a week. Some folks were without any power for days. The Hobo family had power on-and-off for 3-4 days. On for 15-30 minutes, off for 3, 4, 5, 6 hours at a time with freezing temperatures. It even got to zero degrees (Fahrenheit) one of the nights.
The freeze caused us to lose about 15 shrubs. While I did the replanting myself, I was able to easily pay a company to come and remove the existing plants. Between the removal and the replanting of new plants, this was another few thousand dollars. Again, no big deal.
And remember the winter storm I just told you about, where we were without power on-and-off for a week. Never again. My next big purchase is a full house generator. It will cost roughly $15,000. And again, no big deal.
I’m Not Bragging
Please understand, I’m not bragging. My intention, on some level, is to encourage you to save and invest. I made sacrifices for MANY YEARS to get to where I’m at today (and my parents before me). I’ve made sacrifices that many simply wouldn’t choose to do. There are many paths to acquiring wealth, though. It always comes down to choices and math. It’s doable on most any income, even minimum wage (combined with life choices).
My hard work, sacrificing, saving and investing has always been about getting to a place of financial security. Sure you can buy a few nice things if you choose, but being able to buy necessities and a few things just above necessities is the real value of creating wealth. Yes, you can achieve FIRE, too, but that’s not the point of this post. The point of this post is to encourage you to make changes to ensure you have enough money for necessities. I promise it’s worth whatever sacrifice it takes to save and invest your money for a rainy day. The rainy day will come. Be prepared.
Buy what thou hast no need of and ere long thou shalt sell thy necessities.Benjamin Franklin
The biggest benefit of wealth is being able to easily afford necessities.Mr. Hobo Millionaire
Why Haven’t You Blogged Recently?
As I write this, COVID-19 vaccines are available and the pandemic seems to be winding down (I realize this is not true globally… yet). Things are getting a little closer to normal in many parts of the world. All of that to say, during this past year of COVID, with the “slow down” of the world, I focused on a couple of BIG projects that required a lot of focus. I migrated my small software company off of a number of external SAAS products. I stopped using Shopify for web store orders. I stopped using Freshbooks for invoicing. And I stopped using a little known CRM for tracking customers and potential customers. All of this required migrating years of data from those platforms to a new “in-house” system. The in-house system uses SugarCRM and some add-ons I built to do invoicing with it. This took many months of work. My wife and I also do children’s books, and we finally shipped our second book of three in a series. Our books are used for non-profit fundraising in a specific niche. We give them books to sell at no charge and whatever they sell them for, the money goes directly to them. All of this took up a lot of mental capacity and hours of work (combined with all the craziness of COVID). I’ll be blogging more regularly going forward, though.
Millionaire Money Mentors
I’ve also spent some time mentoring others on a new private forum called Millionaire Money Mentors. It is run by John of the blog ESIMoney.Com. If you’ve ever wished you could ask many millionaires “how’d you do it?” or “what should I do in this situation?”, this is the forum. We are all legit millionaires donating our time to answer questions. We don’t know everything individually, but combined, it’s quite the force of financial, business, and life knowledge. I’ve enjoyed asking other millionaires questions on topics I don’t have experience with, too. There is a cost to the forum, but I don’t make anything from it personally. I’m simply there to “pay it forward” any way I can help someone else become better (financially or otherwise).