You look out the window of your home each night after dinner, staring
across the street at your neighbors. You long for the cars they drive, their weekly manicured
lawns, and even the vacations they seem to take several times a year.
But there are several reasons our can neighbors afford so many of the things we would love to have:
Your perception may be skewed
. You see fancy cars in the driveway, and the trim lawns between your toes. You watch work crews
going in and out of the awesome remodeling
projects happening inside. Yet, none of that means your neighbors are wealthier than you are. Just because you see them as more affluent
, doesn’t mean they are.
You are only able to see above the surface of their spending, meaning you have no idea what’s happening down below.
While you choose to consistently
save money for your kids’ education, and retirement later in life, they are spending what they believe are excess
funds on their cars and homes. They might be making the shallow
choice to spend their money on what people can see, while you are spending your money on the life you want to live, both today and tomorrow. You choose to pay for piece of mind.
It’s how your neighbors allocate
their income that makes them seem richer than they are.
While Your neighbors’ salaries might be slightly more than yours, it isn’t enough to justify
leap in spending. However, fringe benefits can greatly widen the gap. Perks such as cars, phones, laptops
, and more can give the recipient
an amazing leg up when it comes to freeing money for other pleasures.
As families mature, houses get paid off and savings grow. Even if your children do go to the same school, their children are older, and they have a few years on you as well. Those could be years spent paying on their house and putting money in the bank.
Imagine how much more freedom you would have without also having to manage your monthly mortgage
5. Their Lives Might be Plastic
Your neighbors might be disciples, worshiping the power of the plastic. While you are smart enough to understand the headaches of undisciplined
credit, your neighbors might be living carelessly, buying short-term luxury today in exchange for a meager
6. They Know Where to Find Deals
I consider myself a connoisseur when it comes to finding great deals on groceries and kids clothing. Perhaps your neighbors also know something about finding deals on the things they need, freeing up more money for things they want.
7. They Pay for Their Immediate Wants First
Your neighbors could also have more money than you do because they prioritize differently, and pay from their savings for projects that they want done.
While my neighbors may or may not make have more money than me, I don’t let it influence the way that I live. I spend money in the way that’s most important for my family, both for a better, more comfortable today, and for a brighter tomorrow.