"It’s weird the satisfaction you get when you help [famous people] get financially secure ... Most of them are surrounded by yes people who tell them they can do no wrong so it takes a strong person to come through all that." -Anonymous accountant
I'm a big Jodie Foster fan and in several interviews that she's done, she talked about how when she was younger and working as a child actress, people would say to her, "Jodie, you'll be completely washed out by the time you're 40 and you won't ever work again after that."
Well, Jodie did keep working after age 40, but she was smart and did the following: she started to produce and direct movies, and she was smart about saving and investing her money early on!! She DIVERSIFIED her life portfolio.
I just read this absolutely fascinating NYMag post where an anonymous entertainment accountant talks about her super famous clients and how surprisingly clueless they are about money.
Lesson of the post: As an entertainer, you might hit it big, but it won't last forever. Stock away your money because the hits will stop one day. And when they do, you won't be struggling because you were smart early on and have enough money to live on for the rest of your life!
"My clients are actors, musicians, writers, newscasters, directors, models, and producers, many of them Grammy and Academy Award winners ... It’s insane, because they don’t live in the real world. They don’t understand anything about how normal, everyday stuff works.
Why do you not understand that because you made 1 million, 5 million, 10 million this year doesn’t mean you’re going to make it next year, and the year after! For god’s sake! You can enjoy yourself, but take a percentage of it and put a little bit of money away! And if you have a mortgage, pay down the principal. Try to build up some actual equity in your home. If you have children, create a small trust fund for them.
I think in all these years, I’ve had a total of two clients who have retirement funds. Only two. Some of them have investment accounts, but they’ll set them up in the “up” years, then, as soon as the bookings drop or they don’t work or the show they’re on is cancelled, they go through that money like water because they refuse to scale back their life style.
We will say, “Guys! You need to cut back.” “Oh, I can’t cut back.” Yes, you can. “You want me to stay at Motel 6 and shop at Target?” No. But real people live on the amount of money they have coming in. They live within their means. I’m sorry, but I think most people could live comfortably on a million dollars! But for some reason, they can’t. They think they’re going to be famous and rich forever.
You try help them onto the right path. It’s a weird the satisfaction you get when you can help someone else get financially set up and secure for life. Most of them are surrounded by people who tell them they can do no wrong so it takes a strong person to come through all that and be levelheaded and down-to-earth."
What is this?
An anthropological look at how people think about money. Created and edited by Star Li.