The other day, I heard a famous song on the radio. You know the one. It goes like this: “If I had a million dollars, I’d be rich.” I’ve heard this song dozens of times, but that day I found myself thinking about the lyrics, specifically about whether or not a million dollars is enough to make someone rich. I was reminded of some of my clients.
Recently I worked with a couple who sold their acreage in the Fraser Valley. After they paid their bills, they had a million dollars cash left. They didn’t buy a llama or an emu, though. Instead they bought their retirement home: a one-bedroom apartment in downtown Vancouver. It had always been their dream to retire downtown, and with the money they made selling their property, they could realize that dream and embrace life in the city.
For this couple, a million dollars didn’t make them feel rich. Rather, they saw it as an opportunity to live a lifestyle that, perhaps due to family and work commitments, wasn’t available to them in the past. They invested the entire amount in an apartment with a great view, where everything is within walking distance.
Another couple I worked with sold a large property in Langley and was left with a million dollars after closing. Instead of placing the cash in a single, pricey investment, they crunched the numbers and decided to retire early. They bought an inexpensive property in the Interior, in a community they knew and enjoyed.
According to this couple’s calculations, a million dollars meant they wouldn’t have to work again. By investing the equity from the sale, combined with their existing mutual funds and other investments, they would have enough money to retire early. This couple is relatively young, with many decades of life ahead of them. They saw a million dollars as life-changing money, a sum that would allow them escape the hustle and bustle of careers, commutes and city life.
Does a million dollars make you rich?
I think depends on your perspective. At Zancope Notary Public, we’re proud to offer thoughtful legal advice and real estate services for buyers and sellers. I like to think that we help bring peace of mind to every client, whether they have a million-dollar home or a million-dollar state of mind.
Being rich is a feeling more than it is a lifestyle or number on a teller’s slip. You can have a million dollars in your account and feel way behind. Or you can have almost nothing and see your life as complete. What do you think?
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