Millionaires stay put

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Neal Templin's Cheapskate column in today's Wall Street Journal (subscription required), is a reminder that restlessness -- and the cost of relocation -- doesn't come cheap.

Templin and his wife are making their fifth move in 17 years. In their situation, it's work related. Still, even with the fringes of a corporate relocation, the costs add up. "You spend thousands fixing up the home you sell and thousands more fixing up the home you buy," and that doesn't include the costs -- both in time and money -- that most of us don't consider. Things like transferring automobile registration and insurance, finding new resources, or enrolling in new schools may demand more time and stress than money, but it all counts.

In "The Millionaire Next Door," 1998, Stanley and Danko described research they had done into the characteristics of millionaires. It turned out that millionaires often don't look like millionaires. They don't necessarily drive a Mercedes or even a relatively new car. More interesting, millionaires tend to stay put. They stay married and they don't move all that often. They tend to keep what they acquire. They also don't spend much time on home projects. They don't fritter their energy away, the use it to make more money.

We may be beginning to emerge from decades of bigger is better and more still isn't enough. Maybe we'll become less restless.
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