Go Beyond Keeping Up With the Jones’ – Change Your Peception, Change Your Net Worth

If you keep up with the Jones you’re destined for a bleak financial future.

I’m intrigued by the magazine articles that specify how to get a designer look on a budget. But there is a fallacy with these articles and I’ll tell you why.

Keep up with the Jones – High versus Low

The premise is that a designer spent $40,000.00 designing this room, and you can get an approximate look for $9,000.00. Think about it for a moment. Do you think $9,000.00 on furnishings and decoration for one room is an affordable price? Who are they writing for? The budget room is usually high priced too.

The article continues by explaining that the couch in the high priced designer room cost $20,000.00 and the low priced copy is only $4,5000.00.

$4,500.00 is a lot of money for a couch!

Is that really the lowest price for a comparable sofa? No way! There are high quality sofas for $1,000.00 or less.

Yet, if you believe the High versus Low, then you will get on the bandwagon that trumpets $4,500.00 as a bargain couch and $9,000.00 as a low priced room.

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Yet, by reading that magazine or watching that HGTV show, where they remodel on a budget and then spend $1,000 on a ceiling light, or $4,500 on a ‘budget’ couch you’re being told what is affordable.

This is a lie!

$9,000.00 is a lot  of money for most folks to spend decorating one room!

And for most folks, $4,500 is a lot of money to pay for a couch. 

Don't keep up with the Jones'. Your growing net worth will thank you.

Don’t Let Others Create Your Reality

There is a psychological premise called “anchoring”. Your mind latches on to the first price as an anchor, then the subsequent price is compared with the initial one, and if it’s lower, it seems like a bargain.

Perception is everything.

What if I came up to you and said I could redo your room for $9,000.00. Would you immediately think, “Wow, what a bargain?” I don’t think so. You’d probably think it’s a bit pricey, especially if you’ve ever shopped at Ikea!

In fact, I doubt if you would hire a decorator for that price quote, if you were starting out and living on a budget!

Don’t let advertisers, marketers, the Jones’ or anyone else set your priorities.

Don’t worry about keeping up with the Jones’, because they are in debt and broke.

Don’t kill yourself trying to have the latest and greatest.

You can look awesome in a sale outfit for under $70.00. You can decorate a room beautifully with thrift store finds and bargains from TJMaxx.

You can live an awesome life without spending a fortune.

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Drive an old car and put the money you save on payments in an investment account.

Shop for garage sale finds, refinish and you have a gem!

Be aware of your income, your savings and your spending. You can live great on your own terms! Don’t let others dictate what you “need or want.” 

Don’t let anyone else’s values, preferences or lifestyles define your lifestyle. By making smart money choices, in line with your income, you’ll grow your net worth


This article was originally published several years ago, yet the premise still holds true today. Please enjoy this vintage post.


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the original article can be found at https://barbarafriedbergpersonalfinance.com/go-beyond-keeping-up-joneses/