Who Are The Joneses?

Nov 08, 2011 Comments Off by
You know the expression “keeping up with the Joneses”. It is known to be the main culprit of lifestyle inflation.
I imagined the Joneses to be the next door neighbours once I bought my white picketed fence house. I thought they would be the ones to show up with a new luxury vehicle in their driveway while the next week they buy their second 50” TV for their basement entertainment system. The Joneses, in my mind I was immuned to them.
No, the Joneses are not my imaginary neighbours. They are my friends I went to university with. They are my peers at work and my investment peers at my real estate investment club.
I would like to claim that I don’t notice what the Joneses buy but I can’t help but notice and compare some aspects. My frugal star friend Amanda who I admire for saving up an impressive amount of cash by her mid twenties is the one who I baseline my frugality on. I noticed she bought some new clothes and started spending more on restaurants. I thought this was a one time deal but her lifestyle increased substantially by taking expensive courses, buying a condo with high fees, renting a car every second week and affording renos for her new place. This is a woman that went through university by fully paying her own way with 2 jobs throughout her degree. Her clothes weren’t shining new but she’s the only one who I know graduated with no debt.
I can’t help but wonder if she is still living below her means. I don’t spend as much as she does but I know she makes less than I do. This makes me question my financial plan to see if I can afford to have more disposable income as I believe I should be able to afford at least what she has. She is my Ms. Jonese.

About the author

Clara Cannes, the chief author from Goldeneer is a Canadian that works as a full time employee in the engineering field. Her passion is real estate, entrepreneurship and sustainability. Clara has finally reached financial independence in her late 20's and is on the path to a comfortable retirement by 35.
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