Natali Morris Blog

September 6, 2015

One Thing You Should Never Say About Money

They can afford it. 

My skin crawls whenever people say this about other people. This is a pet peeve. I think it is the height of rudeness because, 


Maybe it is known that the person/family in question has a sizable paycheck or trust fund. That does not mean that you know a hill of beans about their financial position.

You can never know what someone else can or cannot afford. Never propose to. 

When I first began studying personal finance, I decided to hire a fiduciary advisor. I read a few books by Russell Wild and really liked them. I called him up and he offered to take us on as clients. 

Russell sent me a HUGE document to fill out so that he could get a picture of our financial position. It was 10 pages long! He wanted to know about family size, salaries, investments, age, health, inheritance, and even the financial and biological health of our parents! He wanted to know if we smoke, drink, exercise, travel, or have any expensive vices. 

It takes A LOT to know the financial picture of someone that is not your spouse. So please don’t ever presume that you do. Never say someone else can afford something. It implies jealousy on your part and jealousy does not serve us. In fact, jealousy holds you back from your own goals, and possibly your own financial goals.  

Let us be empowered Chief Home Officers and not busybody ones. Eyes on your own spreadsheets, CHOs. Eyes off those of other people! 


5 responses to “One Thing You Should Never Say About Money”

  1. T Patton says:

    Wise words of wisdom.

  2. David says:

    Well said Natali!

  3. Ariela Tomas says:

    I always say this about my friend who has a Lamborghini and Ferrari and $40K watch, and my periodontist buddy. Now after reading this, I realize how dumb that is and from here on I’m going to shut the F$%^ up. thanks for your perspective Natali.

  4. Joel says:

    Thanks Natali. Well put. This calls to mind the advice from Rich Dad, Poor Dad: Never say “I can’t afford it”. Ask “how can I afford it?”. If it’s really a priority to you, you can sacrifice other things, find or create additional sources of revenue, and/or be patient. But “I can’t” is an unnecessarily fatalistic way of thinking about it. So then, being able to afford something isn’t binary. It’s a matter of weighing priorities. Your list basically comes down to two things: you don’t know all of the factors that are going into someone else’s decision, and you don’t know how they organize their priorities. As always, it’s easier to judge others than to be truly humble and introspective about yourself.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *