A few years back I was seated in the bleachers watching a youth baseball game. In front of me were three chatty women feverishly discussing the issues pertaining to recruiting, retaining and managing domestic help. Apparently these women had no inclination to cook, and they all agonized about how difficult it was to find someone who could provide this service along with the normal housekeeping chores. I then made a mental note to include the topic of “domestic help” in my future surveys which I eventually did.
In Stop Acting Rich I asked, “What percentage of the millionaires report that none of their in-home meals in the past 30 days was prepared by domestic help?” The answer is 94%. What about decamillionaires (those with a net worth of $10M or more)? More than 8 in 10 (84.2%). In fact only 7% reported that at least 1 in 10 of their meals was prepared by domestic help. Keep in mind that these decamillionaires are not only wealthy; they live in the wealthiest block groups in such tony zip codes as Greenwich (06830), Beechwood (44122), Beverly Hills (90210), Bronxville (10708), Hobe Sound (33455), and Old Westbury (11568).
Most millionaires cite the freedom, security and independence as important advantages of being rich. It is not about having hired help attend to their daily tasks; it’s about freedom from worry and financial obligations to others.