Because they’ve earned their wealth in the first generation, new money has a higher propensity to spend their money. You tend to find they have more of an “it’s MY money, not my kids’” attitude and use the money to further their own enjoyment. For example, Mark Zuckerburg (an example of new money) spent $30 million to buy the four houses surrounding his current home. Old money wouldn’t spend as lavishly. Old money usually saves more, with a goal to keep the money in the family as long as possible. Old money has a tradition of large inheritances, but new money doesn’t have a tradition at all. They’ve just made their way into money!
While referring to old money as “snooty” may seem like a stereotype, new money tends to be more relaxed and closer to the public. This is because a lot of new money millionaires have built their wealth from the ground up – they were once just regular people. Old money has never had to live without money, so it’s more difficult for them to relate to others. Because of this, old money tends to socialize with those in their earnings bracket and keep a tight circle.
New money tends to be flashier. They’re more likely to buy Ferraris and Porsches, while old money strays away from flashy and luxurious. Old money will go for a classic style and something that gets them from point A to point B. New money has a harder time saving and planning with their wealth, because they haven’t had their entire lives to be wealthy. Old money is made up of planners and savers, who know what it’s like to have been wealthy their whole lives. However, they won’t spend as much because they might have concerns about being able to recreate that wealth. New money and entrepreneurs have more confidence about making money. They think, “I did it once, so I can do it again!”
Here’s a profile of “old money”:
- You use your money for private schools, books, genteel hobbies and travel. Because you’ve inherited a lot of “stuff” (furniture, paintings, cars), money is spent to keep it all in great condition.
- Your clothes are all in excellent condition and they last a long time. You consider it a mark of distinction to be able to wear the same clothes that belonged to your father/grandfather. You avoid anything trendy and go for a clean, classic look.
- You are the same political affiliation as your father. If he was a Republican, so are you. You vote however you like, but your party affiliation is the same as his.
- You are heavily involved in social and civic organizations. Even if you never go, you are a member of your local country club. You are on the board of trustees at your school/college and make regular donations. Finally, you are affiliated with an older Protestant church and make donations (or tithes) even if you never attend services.
Here’s a profile of “new money”:
- You attended public school and didn’t much care for it. While you’d prefer that your children go to private school, you appreciate the experience public school had on your personal development.
- Politics don’t matter as much to you. You’re much more liberal with your beliefs and you vote with whatever political party you believe is best.
- You love flashy, trendy stuff. You get all the latest gadgets, cars and clothes.
- You are self-reliant and take full responsibility for your life. After all, you created your wealth and you are the captain of your own ship.
- Because you aren’t born into a circle of wealth, you love to network. You have a contact list full of people who value your friendship and who will help you get to where you want to be. You never stop networking.
- You work hard. You know that without hard work, you’ll get nowhere in life. You don’t depend on luck and you expect the utmost out of yourself. You’ve sacrificed everything to get where you are now and you know that when you’re “on”, nothing can stop you.