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On our most recent show, 5 Ways You Can Be a Financial Superhero, we briefly mentioned the concept of stealth wealth. Stealth wealth is the practice of keeping your wealth hidden from others, and not disclosing your true wealth to friends or family. The book The New Elite found that 80% of pentamillionaires (5+ million) practice stealth wealth. Why do so many millionaires keep their wealth a secret?

What does stealth wealth look like?

The wealthy usually become wealthy by being smart with their money, and those practices often continue after they’ve become wealthy. Stealth wealth is the millionaire that drives a 10 year old car, shops at Costco, and doesn’t wear designer clothing. They are the wealthy chameleons of society, blending in wherever they are.

Keeping wealth a secret

It might be hard for someone who isn’t wealthy to understand why so many millionaires are keeping their wealth a secret. After all, isn’t half the fun of being rich flaunting your wealth?

Millionaires are everyday people, they’re your next door neighbor, or your retired school teacher. Keeping their wealth a secret is often the only way to keep it safe. When learning of their wealth, friends or family may ask them for money. Although millionaires may have enough money to comfortably retire, they may not have enough money to help all of their friends and family comfortably retire. Stealth wealth is an easy way to avoid difficult conversations and sticky situations with friends and family who have money troubles.

Many people often have negative attitudes towards the wealthy, which may be rooted out of jealousy. Keeping wealth a secret avoids negative judgement from others, and prevents someone from attracting unwanted attention. Many wealthy Americans don’t want to be seen through the lens of their wealth, but instead seen as a regular person.

Money isn’t the most important thing in life

Practicing stealth wealth is a great way of ensuring money isn’t the most important thing in your life. By keeping your wealth a secret and not flaunting your money, you’re essentially making sure it takes a backseat to the more important things in life, like friends and family. If your friends or family members don’t know about your wealth, it won’t get in the way of your relationship with them.

There are many benefits to stealth wealth, and the only real negative is not being able to flaunt your wealth (many people wouldn’t want to flaunt their wealth anyway, though), so it’s easy to see why stealth wealth has become so popular amongst millionaires. Our full show, 5 Ways You Can Be a Financial Superhero, discusses 4 other financial superhero habits, so make sure you watch that show if you haven’t already.