Being rich is absolutely one of the best feelings on Earth! But there are downsides to being a millionaire as well. Below you'll find three common negatives of being wealthy that tend to surface if people know you have financial means.
When you just look like the average Joe or Jane, nobody bothers you. But when you’re wealthy, everybody seems to come out of the woodwork looking for favors.
I highly advise that everybody follow the mantra of Stealth Wealth to stay invisible from society’s rage.
Three Negatives Of Being Wealthy
Here are three common examples of the negatives of being wealthy if you don't practice stealth wealth.
1) Folks expect you to pick up the check.
I saw a friend I hadn’t seen in eight years one evening. She brought her 10 year old boy and her boyfriend to dinner. When it was time to get the check, none of them budged.
It was only several seconds after the waiter left, but not wanting to create awkwardness, I pulled out my wallet and dropped my credit card. Did she or her boyfriend throw in their card as well? Nope! Talk about alligator arms. Instead, they said, “Are you sure? Thank you!”
I don’t mind paying for dinner, even if it’s paying for three to my one. But at least pretend to make an attempt. After I paid for dinner, they then asked if they could stay at my place in Lake Tahoe one weekend. Their requests went on and on.
If you want to avoid the negatives of being wealthy, it's best your friends don't know you have more money than they do.
2) Folks ask you for non-stop financial advice.
If you have money, it’s natural for people to ask you how to get richer. One time while in the hot tub at my tennis club, my buddy blew me up. Even though we were surrounded by other people he blurted out, “How is Financial Samurai going? I remember you telling me about the site back in 2009 when you first started.”
I told him it was going well when a women next to me said, “Wait, are you Sam from Financial Samurai?!” I didn’t want to lie, so I told her yes. But then she proceeded to ask me about 15 questions regarding career advice at her startup.
Then she asked about investing in real estate crowdfunding since she knew I had just invested $250,000 in the space at the time, my economic world view, and many more questions!
It kinda felt like answering questions on Quora and getting bombarded with question requests in my inbox! She wanted endless free financial advice.
Meanwhile, all I wanted to do was soak in peace in the hot tub after a nice two hour tennis match with my buddies. Hence, not only should you keep your wealth discreet, you should keep your identity discreet if you want to relax more.
3) Folks directly ask you for money for things you don’t care about.
Once you donate money to an organization, they will e-mail and call you forever to keep on donating. That’s normal business practice.
But sometimes, you just don’t want to donate more to the cause. Perhaps you found out the organization is inefficient with their money or spent it on something you didn’t think was worthwhile. The constant follow up can get tiring.
But what really starts getting annoying is when your friends start asking you to donate for causes or people you know nothing about.
One friend, who is worth $250M+ wanted me to donate $5,000 to a dinner he was sponsoring for a politician at his house. I truly dislike politicians and would MUCH rather donate the $5,000 to a foster home.
Given my normal donation amount is $1,000 per event or cause, $5,000 felt a little too rich for me. And it felt super expensive to me because I couldn’t give two licks about this politician who won’t become President during the next race.
Having to say “no,” but still offer $1,000 instead became an awkward moment. Awkward moments due to money suck.
You want to be an invisible millionaire to avoid the negatives of being wealthy.
Don’t Let Your Ego Get In The Way Of Happiness
The only reason why you want others to know you are wealthy is due to ego. The desire for prestige and attention is ruining your life! If you can practice Stealth Wealth, I promise you will be much happier.
You can always “move up” or “move down” the wealth curve when discussing activities with folks of all different wealth classes. But if you are pegged as a wealthy person, you will often be hated on by folks who have much less.
Here is a classic case of folks hating on a household making $300,000 a year in an expensive city like SF or NYC. The purpose of the post was to encourage people to move to a lower cost area because they can, thanks to technology and the growth of freelancing.
But the amount of furor in the comments of the post was nuts even though I created a detailed spreadsheet highlighting all their expenses.
Overcome The Negatives Of Being Wealthy
Build your fortune so you can be free and happy. Just don’t tell anybody how much you exactly have or make.
Long live Stealth Wealth! I recommend managing your finances for free with Personal Capital's award winning financial tools. I've been using them to plan for my retirement since 2012 and have seen my net worth skyrocket since.
There is no rewind button in life. Make sure you get your finances down the first time around!
About the Author: Sam began investing his own money ever since he opened an online brokerage account in 1995. Sam loved investing so much that he decided to make a career out of investing by spending the next 13 years after college working at two of the leading financial service firms in the world. During this time, Sam received his MBA from UC Berkeley with a focus on finance and real estate.
FinancialSamurai.com was started in 2009 and is one of the most trusted personal finance sites today with over 1.5 million organic pageviews a month. Financial Samurai has been featured in top publications such as the LA Times, The Chicago Tribune, Bloomberg and The Wall Street Journal.