Book Review: How to Live Like a Millionaire When You’re a Million Short
I recently finished reading How to Live Like a Millionaire When You’re a Million Short by Marilyn Anderson (Potpourri Books, 2017). Everyone wants to to live the good life, right? But who wants to pay full price? Nobody! This book shows you how to eat a slice from the cake of the wealthy without having to buy the whole thing.
This book covers how to get freebies and discounts and well as tactics for getting great things and experiences for less. Topics include entertainment, clothing, shoes and bags, dining, personal care, travel, home furnishing, living in amazing places and more. I wasn’t quite sure what to think when I picked this one up; sometimes “discount” advice requires far more work than benefit in my opinion, or it only applies to a small segment of the population, or it just requires an incredible amount of good luck. While some of Anderson’s tips do fall under these categories, I was pleasantly surprised by the good amount of suggestions that can be utilized by anyone. Her writing style is fun and filled with often cheeky humor which I enjoyed quite a bit.
There was an extensive section right away in the book about getting into Broadway plays for less. We all know these tickets can be astronomical, but even with the huge population of New York City most people do not live there. I am also not a huge play buff. So this section didn’t do much for me, but if you live in or near NYC or travel there often and love plays, this section of the book alone will probably be worth it for you.
I found the shopping and eating sections to be most interesting. The author offers a wide variety of ways to obtain (even for a short time) some pieces from top designers at a fraction of retail. I’ll definitely be investigating some of these. Yes, there are some obvious suggestions, like thrift shopping, but even then there is a tactic behind how and where to shop to get the goodies.
Anderson also offered some interesting ways to get restaurant discounts and freebies. (She did talk about the Entertainment Book, which many of us are familiar with. I find this discount book to be really great for some people and almost worthless to others. You really need to check out the offers before buying the book. Funny enough, though, she also shares a way to get the Entertainment Book at a discount. Ha!) Some of the other techniques she suggests are things that I myself have done (offering praise instead of just complaining, for example) and others that I had never heard of or even thought of before. If you love to eat out, this section will be very valuable to you, especially if you are willing to be a bit adventurous.
The travel section was also very thought provoking. Air BNB and couch surfing, while discussed, is not for everyone. Luckily Anderson has some advice that anyone can use. While much of this section I cannot use at this point in my life due to family obligations, I wish I’d had this information when I was a single traveler years ago. If you are a solo traveler, have a flexible travel schedule or are willing to do a bit extra you can travel the country and the world without ending up in debt. There were some very interesting tactics included here. Who knew that there are ways to get a free European vacation simply by speaking English?
Chapter 12 is “Rules to Live (Like a Millionaire) By” and I thought this was a great summary of the general mindset of getting great for less. Her #1 rule is ASK, which I love and it reminded me of my own blog post a while back about the power of asking. Her nine rules are not only a great way to live the good life on the cheap, they are also a great approach to life in general. Seize opportunities, make friends, use your imagination…you can live like a millionaire every day by keeping that type of attitude.
In my opinion, the rest of the book is great and filled with fun and adventurous ways to save money on great experiences, but the end of the book is where the real gems are. A bargain is a one time event, but once you have your head on the right way it sticks with you all day every day. The last chapter on how to FEEL like a millionaire could have been fleshed out a bit more; it’s rather like an outline of what would have been an awesome chapter. It is great where it is, but I’d like to have seen a little bit more here because I’m all about having the right the mindset. Even so, the end of the book is golden so be sure to read to the end and not just get caught up in visiting the websites and such that she shares.
There are a lot of suggestions in this book that I simply cannot use as the mom of a three-year-old. (Maybe Anderson can tell me how to win a top notch nanny!) But even so, I can see great value in her advice which has clearly been gathered through years of experience and my son will not be a toddler forever. I can see myself looking back at this book in a few years as my lifestyle becomes more flexible and taking advantage of all the opportunities around me.
How to Live Like a Millionaire When You’re a Million Short is a fun, eye-opening book that can help anyone learn to spot opportunities that will both be quality and rewarding without costing a fortune.