The Occupy movement has raised awareness of what they call “the 1 percent”; the wealthiest people in North America. As of 2009, if you earned more than $343,927 you were a member of the 1 percent; your group earned 17 percent of the income and paid 37 percent of the income tax in the United States, according to CNN. Only 14 percent of your group was making their six or seven figures on Wall Street.
Although you may never make it into the 1 percent, improving your quality of life isn’t as difficult as you think. Most of the 1 percent may have lucrative jobs, but it’s what they did with the money they made, that put them into the top 1 percent. According to the United States Census Bureau, the median household income was $49,445 in 2010. What would you need to do to make it to the median or even a little bit above that? Here are some ideas.
Pay Down Debt
You’ve heard it before, but paying down any debt, regardless of how small, saves you money and makes you feel a little better about your finances. Start with a small debt and use the money you saved to pay down another debt.
Cut Out a Luxury
Cut out your Starbucks twice per week and you’ve saved $416 a year. Put that $416 towards debt, or put it in your Individual Retirement Account (IRA). Over 20 years, that $416 invested that you saved each year, would turn into $15,500.
We live in a world where saving is like flossing. We know we should, but we don’t do it enough. The top 1 percent have made saving a habit. Some of the 1 percent still report that they shop with coupons.
Read more tips at forbes.com