Do you feel like you currently have enough money?

quantgrunt's picture
Rank: King Kong | 1,064

This question is based off an article https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2019/07/17/wh... I saw today that states that only 13% of people with assets greater than $1 M actually feel wealthy. Most of these people lie in the $1M -$5M range but there are those with even more than $5 M worth of assets that do not feel wealthy. I will admit that I am not sure whether the article means that the opposite of not feeling wealthy is feeling poor or uneasy, or whether it is just feeling content. Anways I am just curious about everyone's perception of money. So here are my questions:

  1. Do you feel like you have enough money?
  2. How much money is enough to feel content in life?

Comments (31)

Jul 18, 2019

Bumping this thread. I know there are plenty of you that think about all in comp in relation to your job.

Jul 18, 2019

I've been following - https://www.reddit.com/r/financialindependence/ lately, and it is interesting to read about how are able to accomplish it.

I think in terms of wealth - someone out there will always be richer/wealthier. It's a matter of perspective. Everyone has their preferences.

  1. No.
  2. No idea yet, still planning this part out.

No pain no game.

Jul 18, 2019

Just look at legal fee's if you had to defend yourself in court. A millionaire today can't defend himself. It is understandable why millionaires don't feel wealthy.

  1. I got beer and gas money, so yes
  2. like three fifdy
Jul 18, 2019

You ask a lot of open ended questions on threads and it would be helpful to garner responses if you would be so bold as to offer up your own opinion. Unless you're trolling.

Let's break down this garbage survey science in case you're writing a book report or a journalism major doing an expose. There's no survey methodology, so no way of knowing who was in the survey sample, what geographies they interviewed people in, what their ages are, what their household income is, what their household net worth is, whether they're in a family unit, level of education, their debt and household equity, sample selection criteria and population from which it was drawn... oh yeah, what the questions were that they asked, what the response rate was, who responded vs. who was asked, etc. GIGO.

  1. No
  2. Depends on who you are

My personal opinion is that $1mm is not enough to be wealthy in major coastal cities. It is about $30k per year assuming a 3% after tax withdrawal rate. $30k per year is $2,500 a month. You can hardly support a family on that in NY/CHI/BOS/LA/SF/etc., much less own a home, much less retire, much less do anything else that would be considered a "wealthy" lifestyle. It's not a revelation that people that have $1mm don't consider themselves wealthy, and people who don't have $1mm consider those who have it wealthy.

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Jul 18, 2019

If you want my answers:

1: Not yet. I'm a college kid and barely have enough to scrape by (still getting help from parents as well).

  1. This is a more interesting question. I personally feel that if I had enough money to cover living expenses and take a few vacations a year that would be good for me. Of course this is somewhat of a subjective answer that depends on where I get a job. I do want to make sure that i do not get caught up in how much other people make because i really dont want my life to end up being a rat race.

If you have any tips for finding contentment that would be great

To address your last point I'm not sure if $1 Million in assets can really be transalted to 30k/year unless that is people are measuring wealth based off of never having to work a day in their life. $1 Million in assets seems like a pretty solid safety blanket to me in case something goes wrong (assuming said rich person does not just have a fancy home and thats it)

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Jul 18, 2019

Contentment is only linked to salary up until a point, after which there are severely diminishing returns. If you're really good and hard working at pretty much anything you can find a way to make into a semi-lucrative career over the long term. Contentment is really a state of mind; if you're not content before money, adding money may not only not solve your problems but might throw gasoline on the fire.

As for how to seek it out, what do you enjoy doing in school and what is it that you enjoy about it? For me, I enjoyed economics and language classes. Economics because I liked the analysis and practical/applied way to link numbers to something real in the economy, and what-if scenarios and writing/defending a point of view there. Language classes because I enjoyed immersing myself in another culture. There is no right answer and I'm not one of those people who say you have to be 100% passionate!!!!! about your job all the time, but you should be at least fundamentally interested in what you are doing to avoid being miserable because it will take up the vast majority of your time.

Also, no joke, exercise / yoga / meditation / martial arts / some kind of hobby or group outside of work that you enjoy and can pursue and master.

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Jul 18, 2019
quantgrunt:

1. Do you feel like you have enough money?

Fuck no

quantgrunt:

2. How much money is enough to feel content in life?

Enough to not ever have to work again, but still doing it because I enjoy it.

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Most Helpful
Jul 19, 2019

To address your original post and why it might seem odd that someone worth $5MM can feel less wealthy or satisfied (vs someone worth $1MM), it is well documented and proven that at a certain point relative wealth to your peer group has a bigger effect on your happiness than your net total worth.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/3315638/Relative-wealth-makes-you-happier.html
There will always be someone with more buying power and wealth than you. Think about starting out in a middle class neighborhood but you're driving the best car, have the biggest house on the block and most high profile position. Now imagine you move to the wealthy block and all of sudden all of your neighbors are taking private jets on weekends for vacations and work, you're not going to feel too great about that car of yours.

Another well documented but interesting phenomena is diminishing returns of total wealth and the effect on happiness and life satisfaction. Some research studies have pegged $75K annually as the point where most needs are satisfied and additional money will have little to no effect on happiness while $95K is the point where an individual shifts their focus to self actualization.

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41562-017-0277-0
Not necessarily directly applicable but some other interesting research I recently read concluded that if you compare two individuals with the same amount of assets (things) but one has less debt, they are viewed by others as more wealthy (not surprising). However if one individual had negative wealth and higher debt levels but more assets, they were viewed as more wealthy.

https://psych.princeton.edu/file/189/download?token=jievkUxu

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Jul 19, 2019
quantgrunt:

1. Do you feel like you have enough money?

Absolutely not. I'm currently living just below the poverty line, I've got a wife and 2 kids, and my wife is currently at a local food bank to get us some food for this week.

"quantgrunt":

2. How much money is enough to feel content in life?

It depends on what you mean. Do I feel financially at peace? No. Am I still content in life? Yes. I've still got a roof over my head, I like my wife and kids, and I'm starting a new job next month that starts at triple our current income. Happiness is a mentality that you can't buy.

Jul 19, 2019

Shit, man, congrats on getting that job. That's massive.

Jul 19, 2019
  1. No (I am a student and still use the support of my parents)
  2. I will feel wealthy when I can support my family to good education, vacations, and financial freedom to let them play rep hockey or go on a service trip to haiti. When they do not have to worry I wont either
Jul 19, 2019

No, I would start to feel comfortable if I ever get above $200k.

Wealth starts at $10-$15 million, depending on your cost of living city. If you can make $500k a year and not have to work you are making more than most people over the age of 45.

Comfortable wealth is $25 million, which should be around $1mm of income annually. You can send 2 kids to 50k school, pay 100k a year in rent/mortgage and have plenty leftover to be happy.

Jul 20, 2019

I think you are drastically overestimating. my boss sends his three kids to 50k+ schools, and other private sports lessons and probably pays about 100k in rent. no where near 25m. actually his boss has a 6m GBP house in London, a house in the states and a villa in Italy and hes no where near worth 25mm $.

Jul 19, 2019

I think it boils down to your cost of living.. the more you can trim your expenses, the more comfortable you will be. Once your passive income starts to exceed your expenses, you can hit cruise control. A lot of people on this site tend to think that only comes from $X million invested in dividend paying stocks and bonds.. but for the majority of the workforce it comes down to social security + pension income + periodic retirement account withdrawals.

Take two of my clients, we'll call them Brad and Sue. Brad has a pension through CalPERS that distributes $6,100 / month increasing annually with inflation. Sue doesn't have a pension. They both collect social security, totaling about $2,900 / month, also increasing with inflation. Their living expenses are just under $8,000 per month. They only have about $600k in retirement assets, but given their low expenses, they'll likely surpass a net worth north of $5M by the time they pass in 30 some odd years. They're 100% comfortable, and from our conversations I believe they do not feel poor at all, quite the contrary.

There is more than one way to skin a cat. Just depends on your perspective and what you're after. Kinda beat around the bush on this one.. but hopefully it helps some of you to look at the bigger picture in a different light.

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Jul 19, 2019

Call me a hippie but you need to start adjusting how you look at wealth

With your current thinking none of you will ever answer yes to #1. You need to radically adjust what is "enough" otherwise you will be chasing it until you die

2 - if you're into your career and getting into your late 20's - early 30's and you still don't feel content, it's not the money, it's you

What is the answer to 99 out of 100 questions?

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Jul 20, 2019

tell no.2 to Gary vaynerchuk

Jul 23, 2019

if gary v convinces someone they shouldn't be / aren't content, gary v has just sold that person on his product/system. marketing 101

What is the answer to 99 out of 100 questions?

Jul 19, 2019
  1. No.
  2. A lot more than I currently have.
Jul 19, 2019

Most people who aren't happy with $3MM wouldn't be happy with $30MM. I think feeling content has very little to do with money, and much more to do with impact - at work, with family and friends, in the community, etc.

Having massive amounts of money so that you can get send your kids to elite private schools, buy more houses, a boat, etc. are not very accretive to level of contentment long-term. Telling your buddies your kids attend a $30k/year high school might provide a short-term ego boost, but in the end doesn't matter all that much. The Aston Martin might be fun to drive, but again doesn't add to long-term contentedness.

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Jul 22, 2019
  1. No but who feels like they do.
  2. If I have enough money to have all necessities like internet, good house, food, alcohol etc and can buy something that I need without having to worry and buy reasonable luxury items every now and then without having to worry and can go somewhere without having to worry then I think that is enough. I look at it this way if I could retire and have money for 30 to 40 years after that and live very comfortable it is enough. But if something tragic comes up you could just be completely f***ed. So who knows.
Jul 22, 2019
  1. No, and I likely won't be able to attain what I believe is "true wealth" with my current career trajectory
  2. A very, very wealthy friend of mine told me his father said $20M real USD is when you can consider retiring for the rest of your life and live extremely comfortably. My girlfriend's father is worth upwards of $30M and also lives a very comfortable life. But they both still work and are in their 50's. So I think my view on wealth, based on a very small sample size, is that you need ~$25M to have "fuck you money", but even at that point it's not like you can take helicopters everywhere without feeling financial guilt.

everyone's a liberal until they start making money

Jul 23, 2019
  1. no
  2. $100mm & a bad bitch
Jul 23, 2019
  1. Yes, of course. Everyone in this thread is a yes. You need perspective if you think you don't have enough money and you're typing that on a computer.
  2. I'm getting to a point where my self-worth is fully separated from money. I acted like I had money even when I didn't. People would assume my family was wealthy. I never wore name brand shit or had nice shit. I just spoke well and carried myself a certain way. With that said, I often fantasize about getting in my car, leaving everything at home, throwing all the books I own and haven't read yet in a duffle bag, get a shiload of bottled water, and just drive off. No GPS. Just fuck off for years. Live like a hermit. Don't do shit but drink water and read books. I don't think I'd have a hard time finding enough food to survive. Don't talk to other humans. Run out of gas eventually. Give the keys to someone who looks nice and tell them to have fun. Just be a homeless, speechless wanderer.

heister:

Look at all these wannabe richies hating on an expensive salad.

https://arthuxtable.com/

Jul 24, 2019

this made me think of r/hydrohomies

What is the answer to 99 out of 100 questions?

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Jul 23, 2019
  1. For my current lifestyle, I'm happy with the salary I have. Would I like more? Of course. Would it radically change my life or make me happier, probably not.
  2. Depends on your goals in life and what you're passionate about. I'm sure some people could be happy as a clam by purchasing a $50k cabin in the woods and living there for the next 50 years. That wouldn't last too long in NYC/if you like to travel/want to start a business/etc.
Jul 23, 2019

Nope

25MM. I'd like multiple residences, a few cars, the ability to fly commercial uninhibited internationally and enough money for food / clothing / world class healthcare for the rest of my life. I'd like to ensure that my family is also taken care of for the rest of my life financially. If I'm spending this much time perfecting making money, I should be able to carry the basic needs of my immediate family.

Jul 23, 2019
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