Australians are debating what it means to be rich in 2023 amid skyrocketing inflation and the rising cost of living.
Even those in the highest tax bracket are feeling the need to pinch pennies as Aussies believe it takes a yearly income of $336,516 to be ‘financially comfortable’ despite the average sitting at $52,338.
Aussies are now sharing the small things that indicate what ‘wealth’ really looks like in 2023 – from the type of water bottle they carry to what they order at brunch.
Some listed trivial things like having a cutlery drawer in the dishwasher, butler’s pantries, pyjamas from Peter Alexander, preferring organic fruit and vegetables or owning a second fridge.
In answer to ‘what makes someone wealthy or upper middle class in Australia right now’ on Reddit, many agreed owning a house over $1million in ‘reasonable proximity to the CBD’ is a decent indication.
Aussies believe it takes a whopping $336,516 to be financially comfortable despite the average Australian income sitting more than six times higher at $52,338 according to the ABS
Cash-rich people also have ‘some kind of mid-level 4WD for weekends out and a normal car for day trips’, ‘holidays once or twice a year often during school holidays’ and have the ‘self-perception as being middle class working professionals even though they are quite well off’.
‘Once you have the cutlery shelf in your dishwasher you have made it. Baskets are for the poor,’ another user replied.
‘If you don’t worry or look at the price of groceries when you go grocery shopping you are rich,’ a second said.
Someone listed of a range of things that indicate financial stability including having a premium gym membership, hiring a house cleaner, buying organic food at the supermarket
What do Aussies think it takes to be rich in 2023?
Gen Z –
Gen X –
Baby Boomers –
Another added a second fridge in the garage is a symbol of wealth but some pointed out that can also be a low-income or ‘bogan’ trait.
One said rich people can afford to pay for a blow dry at the hair dresser between cuts and trims.
‘I mean it’s nice when you get a haircut but I personally couldn’t think of a bigger waste of money to pay someone to just blow dry your hair,’ they said.
Another listed of a range of things that indicate financial stability including having a premium gym membership, hiring a house cleaner, buying organic food, and sending kids to private school.
‘The Uber Eats a couple times a week instead of picking-up, the going through toll roads instead of free and taking Ubers instead of walking, the uptake of more expensive grooming and services like Botox,’ they added.
Telltale signs someone is wealthy in Australia in 2023
- Own house over $1million in reasonable proximity to the CBD
- Cutlery shelf in the dishwasher
- Second fridge in the garage
- Butler’s pantry off the kitchen
- Frank Green water bottles
- Ordering extras at brunch
- Not looking at prices when shopping for groceries
- Owning some kind of mid-level 4WD for weekends out and a normal car for day trips
- Holidays once or twice a year often during school holidays
- Having the self-perception as being middle class working professionals even though they are quite well off
- Hiring a house cleaner
- Buying organic food
- Getting a blow dry at the hairdressers between cuts
New research from Finder revealed how much money Australians think it takes to be rich in 2023.
More than 1,000 respondents thought it took earning an income of $336,516 a year to be stable.
The study found Gen Z thought it took $428,474 to be wealthy compared to $345, 785 for Millennials.
Gen X needs the least amount of money to feel rich at $294,705 and Boomers thought $306,505 was enough to be rich.
Sarah Megginson, money expert at Finder, said people need to be wary of comparing their own finances to others and warns a person’s yearly income does not determine their financial situation.
‘A small number of high-income earners can make average income figures seem impressive, but remember the typical Australian is on a salary of just over $50K,’ she said.
‘It’s easy to get caught up in comparing yourself to others who seem like they have it all – social media can be a significant contributor with people’s ritzy reels constantly on display.
‘Remember true wealth is not just about money. Feeling rich can also be having a sense of satisfaction and contentment in all aspects of your life.’
She added it was important to have realistic financial goals and being rich does not mean earning the highest income.
‘The best thing you can do is develop great financial management skills,’ she said.
‘Look at how much you earn and what your everyday bills and expenses are so you know how much you can afford to spend on luxuries such as eating out and shopping.’
Previously, a man revealed the traits he believes makes you rich Down Under including driving a Landcruiser, owning an iPhone and wearing designer chunky black trainers.
‘POV: You’re rich in Australia’ he wrote in an online video before he cycles through a series of images of things people think are a symbol of wealth starting off with the latest iPhone 13 Pro which retails at $1,699.
A TikTokker revealed the traits they think makes you rich in Australia including driving a Landcruiser, and owning an iPhone in a clip that’s racked up thousands of views
A person wearing chunky black trainers by a designer brand as well as someone who attends a top university or private school could also be considered rich.
The video then shows a large double-storey modern home and finishes with a Landcruiser much like those often seen driving around affluent Aussie suburbs.
In the comments, many agreed with the ‘accurate’ observations whereas others joked they never realised they were considered wealthy.
‘POV: you’re rich everywhere,’ one person wrote and another laughed: ‘Them shoes tho’.
‘I didn’t think I was rich,’ a third commented.
‘I have that car and everyone in my family has that phone. Also I’ve got better shoes but I don’t go to private school,’ admitted a fourth.
Another series of clips went viral on TikTok for revealing the ‘low-key’ traits of a person has plenty of disposable income.
The ‘low-key’ traits of being rich in Australia have been revealed, including buying lunch in theme parks instead of bringing your own and knowing how to ski
Other subtle signs of wealth were said to be flying exclusively with Qantas (left) and shopping at upscale department stores like Myer (right)
‘Low-key’ things that are a sign of wealth in Australia
- Flying exclusively with Qantas
- Shopping at Myer or David Jones
- Owning a fridge with an ice dispenser
- Having a dishwasher cutlery tray instead of a basket insert
- Buying lunch at a theme park instead of bringing your own
- Knowing how to ski and holidaying overseas
- Living in a two-storey house with an in-ground pool and electric gate
Podcaster Clare Stephens, 30, reminisced on the subtle things she associated with wealth as a child, including owning a fridge with an ice dispenser, shopping at Myer and flying exclusively with Qantas.
In a series of five videos, the author said she always knew a family was well off if they knew how to ski, bought lunch at a fair or theme park instead of bringing their own, or had a sign at the front door asking for shoes to be removed inside.
‘It means you’ve got nice floors or a fancy carpet,’ she added.
Clare said it wasn’t until she got to university and discovered people could ski that she realised some had very different types of holidays to the ones her family did.
Other signs included having a fridge with an ice dispenser (left) and having a sign at the front door asking you to remove your shoes before stepping inside (right)
Her observations about the subtle trappings of affluence Down Under, which have been viewed 378,576 times since the first video was uploaded online on Friday, sparked a wave of amusing responses.
‘Shopping at David Jones means you’re wealthy,’ one person replied.
A second said living in a two-storey house, having an electric gate, an in-ground pool or a freestanding bathtub, and holidaying overseas are all signs you’re rich.
‘When people went on holidays for leisure, and not just to visit relatives interstate,’ another noted.
Others said people who have kitchens with silver appliances instead of white or a second lounge room are ‘elite’.
One woman said she had always wished her parents would buy her more expensive ice creams at the beach.
‘Being allowed to get a Magnum rather than a Splice, Calippo or Paddle Pop,’ she wrote.
Ms Stephens shared her agreement, saying: ‘Omg YES. Magnums were premium.’