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Dispelling the Myth that Poverty Equates to Stupidity: My Lessons from Inheriting $150,000 as a Formerly Poor Person


Poor people are not stupid: I grew up in poverty, and inherited $150,000. Here’s what I have learned from my good fortune.

When I received an inheritance of over $150,000, it was a life-changing moment for me. As a person who grew up poor, this windfall was an opportunity to break out of the cycle of paycheck-to-paycheck living. In September 2018, I wrote to Moneyist to ask for advice on how to invest my inheritance. Despite my lack of college education and earning potential, I was determined to make my money grow.

Since then, I have paid off my car, bought a tiny house, deposited $70,000 in a high-yield online savings account, topped up my retirement portfolio, invested $30,000 into emerging markets, and maxed out my IRA. I also spent $7,000 on dental work in Mexico. Now, five years later, I am making almost $4,000 a month after taxes, and I live frugally, saving and investing most of my income.

Poor people are not stupid

Many Americans make less than $50,000 a year, and we are not represented in the financial-advice world. It is empowering to invest, even with just $25-$100. The pandemic, while devastating for many, opened up a job opportunity for me, and I feel terrible admitting it was a blessing for me personally. Poor people are not stupid. We are hardworking people, holding down two to three jobs to make ends meet.

There is a financial crisis in this country, and it comes from unchecked capitalism. Corporations buy up single-dwelling homes and raise rents drastically, while banks and lending institutions prey on people with obscenely high interest rates. This fosters an environment of exploitation against young people before they even graduate high school.

Tiny living forces you to be mindful

My tiny house has been one of the greatest decisions I have ever made. It has changed my perspective on what makes me happy. Living in a tiny house has forced me to be mindful, not only of my space but also of myself and how I live in my space. Living tiny has made me a better person and improved my quality of life in ways other than financial.

Related Facts

  • Many Americans make less than $50,000 a year, and they are not represented in the financial-advice world.
  • Unchecked capitalism allows corporations and banks to exploit people with high rents and high interest rates.
  • Tiny living forces people to be mindful of their space and their actions, resulting in a better quality of life.

Key Takeaway

People who grew up poor are not stupid or lazy. We are trying to make ends meet by holding down two to three jobs. The financial crisis in this country is caused by unchecked capitalism that exploits the poor with high rents and high interest rates. Living tiny forces people to be mindful of their actions, resulting in a better quality of life.

Conclusion

My experience of receiving an inheritance of over $150,000 has taught me that poor people are not stupid. We are not illiterate country bumpkins struggling to figure out how to work a computer. We are the hard-working people struggling to make ends meet. Living tiny has forced me to be mindful of my space and my actions, and I hope more people can benefit from tiny living and become more mindful of their actions and how they affect others.

Denk Liu
Denk Liuhttps://www.johmm.com
Denk Liu is an honest person who always tells it like it is. He's also very objective, seeing the situation for what it is and not getting wrapped up in emotion. He's a regular guy - witty and smart but not pretentious. He loves playing video games and watching action movies in his free time.
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