Imagining a life rich with private yachts, elite jets, and the finest of five-star retreats is something millions of Americans dream of each day. The allure of a millionaire lifestyle, devoid of debt and seemingly absent of stress, is irresistible to many. But what would an everyday American surrender to step into the shoes of a Silicon Valley mogul, a Wall Street titan, or even a Hollywood A-lister?
It is a question that WealthofGeeks.com sought an answer to. They ran a survey of 3,000 respondents asking a hypothetical question:
How many years of your life would you willingly trade to enjoy the splendors of a millionaire’s existence indefinitely?
The findings were eye-opening. On average, Americans would give up 4 years and 11 months of their lives for an endless taste of wealth!
Geographical differences showed varied levels of willingness to make this trade-off. For example, residents of New Hampshire, despite their state motto “Live Free or Die,” would give up the most time – a whole 7 years and 11 months – to live like millionaires. Given that the average lifespan in New Hampshire is 79 years, they might feel they have extra time to spare.
On the flip side, the people of Indiana and North Dakota seem to hold their time on earth dearer than vast riches. The average survey participant from these states would ‘only’ trade half a year for a slice of the millionaire pie.
The survey results indicate that New Jerseyans, on average, would surrender a whopping 5 years and 2 months of their life for the opportunity to indulge in the endless luxuries of a millionaire. It seems that for many in New Jersey, the allure of sipping cocktails on a private beach or jet-setting to exotic destinations is worth the trade-off.
Digging deeper, Wealth of Geeks explored what else New Jerseyans would forfeit for a life of extravagance. A surprising 23% would let go of their career goals, which is understandable if financial worries were off the table. More concerning, though, is that 16% would sacrifice quality sleep, and 15% would abandon hobbies, including model train enthusiasts among them. Personal privacy is a commodity 13% would part with, while 11% would forego living close to family. A smaller group, 4%, would be willing to cut ties with friends, assuming they could make new ones in their new swanky circles. However, in a heartwarming revelation, just 1% would trade away the chance at love for the sake of wealth, affirming the belief that money can’t buy happiness.
Respondents also weighed in on which aspects of a millionaire’s life appealed to them most. High-end real estate took the top spot with 27%, followed closely by luxury goods at 23%. The allure of luxury travel enticed 22%, and the idea of personal services like butlers and private chefs appealed to 21%. Meanwhile, 7% were most attracted to the exclusive events that come with a wealthy status.
However, nearly half the respondents were skeptical about how accurately the media portrays the millionaire lifestyle, with 48% doubting the reality matches the glitz and glamor often depicted.
When asked how adopting such a lavish lifestyle would affect their personal relationships, opinions were mixed. About half predicted a positive outcome, 24% feared a negative impact, and 26% felt things would stay the same. It seems that even when it comes to the prospect of immense wealth, Americans have varied views on what truly matters.
“The results of our survey reveal a striking paradox in the American psyche. On the one hand, there’s a deep-rooted desire for financial freedom and the amenities that come with it. On the other, for the vast majority there’s a poignant awareness that wealth and luxury are not substitutes for genuine relationships and emotional connections,” says Michael Dinich of WealthofGeeks.com.