Minimalists are people that enjoy having the bare minimum of things in their life. They love an easy life that’s focused on doing what they love. They don’t feel like it’s a sacrifice, they hate clutter, wasting time, the upkeep and maintenance on cars, homes, boats, motorcycles etc.
They like living spaces that are easy to keep clean and organized. They have simple pleasures that generally are experiences with friends, family, and intellectual pursuits. They are naturally good at the spending side of personal finances as their needs and wants are few.
If they make a good living pursuing their passion or just get a job they love, then their personal finance tends to take care of itself through smart lifestyle choices.
What is minimalist finance?
A minimalist approach to personal finance is spending money mindfully and with focus on the things that matter most and not being wasteful by buying excessive things that aren’t needed and bring no joy. It’s not about being cheap, it’s about valuing your money and the time spent earning it and only spending on things worth the price and your time. A financial minimalist will own only things they use regularly, that make their life easier, and makes them happy.
Most minimalists dislike excessive bills and debt. They like their finances to be kept as simple as possible with automatic payments debited from their accounts and automatic deposits made into their savings and investment accounts. They like their finances like their life, minimal and convenient. They don’t like a cluttered bank account or uncancelled subscriptions, they keep their bank accounts clean, simple, optimized, and organized. They tend to use simple set it and forget it investing programs that they don’t have to think about, they just let the strategy take consistent action in deposits and purchases.
A financial minimalist doesn’t feel the need to reward their self with material things and purchases. They prefer to reward themselves with an easy and simple life. Freedom is one of their top values. They feel no drive, need, or jealously to keep up with other people’s lifestyles. They focus on their own life and their personal finances are a reflection of their values. They focus on needs not wants. They buy things that make their life easier not more difficult, stressed, and cluttered.
How do you manage money like a minimalist?
The key to personal finance is to simply spend less than you make. The barrier to doing this is usually self-control. A minimalist naturally has self-control as they want their life to be simple, easy, and uncluttered. Minimalists values are the opposite of the spendthrift and hyperconsumerism culture of the United States. This makes it much easier to stay out of debt, spend less money, save, and invest.
A personal finance minimalist applies the principles of minimalism to their money by only having the debt and bills they need. A finance minimalist will own the least amount of items they need and want. They usually own a house or apartment that’s only the size that they and their family needs. They don’t have unused rooms or areas, they optimize their space for size and utility.
They focus on their needs and priorities so they spend less money, save and invest more of their earnings, and are mindful with their purchases and savings.
A personal finance minimalist wants to buy and own things that bring them utility and joy daily. They dislike clutter and unused items taking up space in their home.
Minimalist Finance Tips
- Know your values and prioritize your spending to align with the things you find most important.
- Have a written budget or the self-control to live within your means.
- Pay off current debt and stay out of future debt.
- Only spend money on things that bring you value equal to cost.
- Focus on true utility and buying less things.
- Buy things that make your life easier.
- Get rid of things that you don’t use every day or every week.
Can minimalism cause financial freedom?
Minimalists prefer focused spending over broad consumerism. They tend to enjoy the simple things in life and also don’t want bills and debt to trap them into a job they dislike.
Minimalists are not materialistic, they tend to enjoy more intellectual things. Many minimalists are completely happy to just walk to a nearby bookstore on a rainy Sunday afternoon and browse with a cup of hot tea. While others may think happiness is going on a week long cruise to the Caribbean those types of things rarely appeal to the minimalist. Minimalists thrive to create a life and routine they enjoy so much that they don’t need a vacation from it.
The minimalist is not susceptible to the lifestyle creep experienced by many consumers. They don’t have the desire to buy a bigger house, rent a nicer apartment, or buy a brand new car if they get a raise or promotion. Contentment with what they have is their biggest driver of behavior. They also enjoy doing what they love for a living and dislike complex corporate careers. They don’t find themselves trapped in jobs they hate because they have the ability to meet their minimal financial needs with almost any job they want.
Their lack of debt, bills, and great investing habits tend to create a level of financial freedom to choose the job they want or build a business they love. They generally have great flexibility in their personal finances as their needs are few and their energy to pursue their passions are high.
Having no debt and few possessions opens up many possibilities and opportunities that few have once they are tied down to large houses, car payments, and monthly bills. Minimalists live simple lifestyles and can travel light if they need or want to.
Minimalists have more freedom of action as they aren’t trapped in a large debt load and have less belongings to manage and deal with daily. The minimalist lifestyle naturally and automatically solves many of the financial problems that the typical American struggles with. The natural outcome of a minimalist lifestyle will be financial freedom at some level.