The most consistent difference between people who become millionaires before they retire and those who do not is that the millionaires have developed the long-term habit of saving. In more than twenty years of working with millionaires and their finances, I have noticed their tendency to save so many timesthat I have finally taken it for granted.
"Money" magazine published a study in its August 2000 edition which reported that approximately 100 million families in the U.S. Of this group, 7 million families are millionaires and 93 million are not. Although this may not be surprising, what is worthy of note is that 80% of the millionaire families were self made.
The secret of wealth (that so many people miss) is that in America, almost anyone with a moderate level of discipline can become a millionaire. To become a millionaire, you do not have to be a surgeon or the chairman of the board of a major corporation. You do not even have to hold a high paying job. You must, however, be disciplined enough to save money year in and year out on a consistent basis.
Albert Einstein once called compound interest: "The greatest mathematical discovery of all time."
Don did not have be a surgeon to retire a millionaire; he simply needed to be consistent in saving at least $3.87 a day. Early in his working life Don developed the habit and today he is a millionaire. I have worked with many surgeons who are older than Don who still haven’t saved their first million.
What separates the spenders from the savers?
The millionaires I have met generally do the following...