Think about the last time you bought a pack of gum. Did you fret over the price? Did you ask,”Hmmm, can I afford this?”
Probably not. You bought the gum and it’s done. The purchase had no impact on your lifestyle or your future choices.
To a rich man who walks into a dealership and buys a six-figure Bentley without thought, the acts are the same.
Affordability is when you don’t have to think about it.
If you have to think about “affordability,” you can’t afford it because affordability carries conditions and consequences.
If you buy a boat and resort to mental gymnastics over affordability, YOU CAN’T AFFORD IT.
Sure you can assuage affordability and make outlandish arguments, often starting with…
“I can afford this as long as . . .
. . . I get that promotion.”
. . . my mortgage doesn’t adjust.”
. . . my stock portfolio makes another 10% this month!”
. . . my sales forecasts are double.”
. . . my wife finds a job.”
. . . I cancel my health insurance.”
This self-talk is a warning that you can’t afford it. Affordability doesn’t come with strings attached.
You can bluff yourself but you can’t bluff the consequences.
So how do you know if you can afford it? If you pay cash and your lifestyle doesn’t change regardless of future circumstances, you can afford it. In other words, if you buy a boat, pay cash, and are NOT be affected by unexpected “bumps in the road,” you can afford it.
Would you regret a gum purchase if you lost your job a week later? Or if your sales forecast was slashed by 50%? Nope, it wouldn’t make a difference.
This is how affordability is measured against your level of wealth.
To overcome wealth impersonation, know what you can and can’t afford. There is nothing wrong with buying boats and Lamborghinis if you can truly afford them.
There is a time and a place to indulge…