10 Saving Secrets Most Self-Made Millionaires Follow (Smart Frugal Living)

10 Saving Secrets Most Self-Made Millionaires Follow (Smart Frugal Living)

The saving secrets followed by self-made millionaires often show a less traveled but more effective path to building wealth. Contrary to popular belief, extravagant spending and high-profile lifestyles aren’t typical for most millionaires who have successfully navigated their way to a seven-figure net worth.

Instead, it’s a blend of innovative saving strategies, frugal living, and well-thought-out financial habits that set them apart. This article explains the ten fundamental saving secrets that have helped numerous self-made individuals achieve millionaire status based on multiple studies.

By exploring these insights, we can uncover how disciplined financial practices lead to remarkable wealth accumulation and what we can learn from those who have mastered the art of growing their fortunes.

10 Money Saving Secrets of Self-Made Millionaires

Based on the millionaire studies by Thomas Corely (Rich Habits), Thomas Stanley (Millionaire Next Door), and Dave Ramsey (National Study of Millionaires), here are the ten most common frugal living habits that self-made millionaires use to build their seven-figure net worth.

  1. Live Below Your Means: Millionaires often avoid lavish spending, opting for a lifestyle that costs significantly less than they can afford. They prioritize saving over displaying wealth.
  2. Invest Consistently: Regular and wise investments in stocks, 401(k) plans, or personal businesses form a core part of their wealth-building strategy, rather than relying on high incomes alone.
  3. Avoid Debt: Shunning high-interest debt, especially credit card balances, is a crucial habit. Millionaires focus on paying off debts quickly and using credit judiciously.
  4. Modest Housing: Many choose to live in affordable homes, usually less than three times their annual income, thus avoiding large mortgages that can hinder investment potential.
  5. Budget and Track Expenses: Implementing a budget and closely monitoring expenses is expected. Millionaires often use practical tools like shopping lists and spend conservatively on everyday items.
  6. Drive Practical Vehicles: Opting for used or affordable cars, self-made millionaires avoid large monthly car payments, which can be a barrier to wealth accumulation.
  7. Focus on Financial Goals and Planning: Setting clear goals for their career, business, and finances and spending time on financial planning is critical to their success.
  8. Value Quality Over Flash: Millionaires typically shun status symbols and luxury goods, understanding that these are depreciating assets that don’t contribute to long-term wealth.
  9. Marry a Like-Minded Partner: A stable marital relationship with a partner who shares similar financial goals and frugal habits is often a cornerstone of their economic success.
  10. Prioritize Financial Independence: The overarching goal for many self-made millionaires is not the accumulation of luxury items but long-term financial security and freedom, guiding their spending and saving habits.

Keep reading for a deep dive into self-made millionaires’ ten critical frugal living habits.

Living Within Your Means: The Art of Subtle Wealth

One of the most fundamental habits of self-made millionaires is living below their means. This doesn’t mean living in deprivation or never enjoying life’s pleasures. Instead, it involves avoiding extravagant spending and prioritizing long-term financial security over immediate gratification.

By doing so, millionaires can save and invest more of their income, accelerating their wealth growth. Real-life examples in the millionaire studies included unknown millionaires who resided in modest homes and drove average cars, proving that true wealth isn’t always visible.

Investing With Purpose: How Millionaires Grow Their Wealth

Regular and wise investment is a cornerstone in the wealth-building strategy of self-made millionaires. Rather than solely depending on high incomes, they create a diversified portfolio. This often includes stocks, 401(k) plans, and personal business ventures.

Understanding the power of compound interest and risk management’s importance helps them make informed decisions that ensure their investments grow over time. They regularly convert earned income into investment capital.

Debt Aversion: The Millionaire’s Approach to Financial Obligations

As demonstrated by many self-made millionaires, avoiding high-interest debt, particularly credit card balances, is crucial for financial success. They understand the crippling effect of debt on net worth and employ strategies to manage and pay off debts quickly.

Opting for cash purchases over credit and maintaining a debt-free lifestyle are vital practices that differentiate the self-made wealthy from the average spender.

Choosing Modesty in Housing: Why Millionaires Don’t Overspend on Homes

Many self-made millionaires choose affordable and modest homes relative to their income. This strategic decision allows them to allocate more resources toward investments rather than tying up funds in a large mortgage.

By choosing homes that cost less than three times their annual income, millionaires exemplify a preference for financial flexibility over lavish living.

The Power of Budgeting and Expense Tracking

Effective budgeting and meticulous tracking of expenses are common traits among self-made millionaires. They often use practical tools like shopping lists and budgeting apps to monitor spending. This disciplined approach to finances enables them to make informed decisions about where their money goes, ensuring that they invest and save effectively.

Driving Practicality: Millionaires’ Preference for Used Vehicles

Instead of flashy sports cars, many self-made millionaires prefer used or practical vehicles. This choice is not about depriving themselves but about financial pragmatism. By avoiding the steep depreciation of luxury and new cars, they can direct more funds towards investments and wealth accumulation.

For a self-made millionaire, their car is just a vehicle to get them from point A to point B. They aren’t trying to impress anyone and prefer to save the money they would spend on a big car payment.

Goal-Oriented Financial Planning: A Key to Millionaire Success

Setting clear financial goals is fundamental for self-made millionaires. Whether for their career, business, or personal finances, these goals act as a compass, guiding their decisions and actions. Effective financial planning involves regularly reviewing and adjusting these goals, ensuring alignment with their long-term wealth-building strategies.

Choosing Quality Over Prestige: Millionaires’ Spending Philosophy

When it comes to spending, self-made millionaires value quality over flash. This philosophy extends beyond vehicles to all areas of life, including clothing, gadgets, and homes. Millionaires ensure that their spending decisions support their wealth-building efforts by focusing on their purchases’ long-term value and quality rather than the prestige they might confer.

Partners in Wealth: The Role of a Supportive Spouse

The role of a like-minded, supportive partner can’t be overstated in the financial success stories of many self-made millionaires. A partner with similar frugal habits and financial goals contributes significantly to maintaining a lifestyle conducive to wealth accumulation.

This partnership often involves joint decision-making and shared financial responsibilities, creating a solid foundation for wealth-building.

Financial Independence: The Ultimate Aim of Frugal Millionaires

The ultimate goal for many self-made millionaires is achieving financial independence. This isn’t just about accumulating wealth; it’s about the freedom and choices that come with it. By adopting these saving secrets, millionaires aim for a life where they are not constrained by financial limitations but empowered to make decisions that align with their personal, professional, and financial aspirations.

Key Takeaways

  • Adopting Modest Living: Embrace a lifestyle within or below your financial capabilities to amplify savings.
  • Strategic Investments: Engage in regular, informed investments for steady wealth growth.
  • Rejecting Excessive Debts: Maintain a cautious stance on debt, especially high-interest ones, to preserve financial health.
  • Sensible Housing Choices: Choose residences that don’t overextend financial resources, favoring practicality over extravagance.
  • Rigorous Budget Management: Implement and adhere to a budget, meticulously monitoring outflows.
  • Practical Vehicle Selection: Choose automobile reliability and functionality over luxury and ostentation.
  • Purposeful Financial Objectives: Set and pursue clear, well-defined financial targets.
  • Prioritizing Value in Expenditures: Spend on items that offer lasting quality rather than transient status.
  • Partnership in Fiscal Objectives: Collaborate with a partner with similar monetary values and goals.
  • Aspiring for Fiscal Autonomy: Focus on achieving a state of financial self-sufficiency and liberty.


The journey to millionaire status is less about earning high incomes and more about how you manage what you earn. Adopting these saving secrets can lay the groundwork for a successful financial future. Remember, it counts not just how much you make but how much you keep and grow.

These saving secrets reflect a consistent theme among self-made millionaires: focusing on long-term financial stability, prudent spending, and strategic investment rather than high earnings and extravagant living. By embracing these principles, they build a sustainable economic foundation leading to wealth accumulation and retention.

Embracing these ten saving secrets most self-made millionaires follow reveals a blueprint for smart frugal living, guiding you to financial success like those who have already paved the way.