Do Negative Millionaires Exist?

Posted by Madison on November 20, 2007

This is the second post in a series about millionaire status. Read about the first one here: Millionaires in the Making: Pros and Cons.

The million dollar number is often set as a personal goal for many people. Has anyone ever gone the other way and made it to the dark side of a million? Could someone really owe $1 million? And I don’t mean holding a $1,000,000 mortgage, I mean someone who has a negative net worth of that much.

Emotions and Money

There are many instances when the emotional side and the rational side of money are confused. I’d like to say that earning, saving and investing are all just numbers, but I know better. I know that money makes you think in funny ways. For example, I will Sell Coupons on Ebay for a couple dollars but won’t Sell the Car to save thousands. It doesn’t make sense.

Even though emotions are present in all levels of wealth, does the $1 million number elicit more emotional attachment than other milestones? After all there are many blogs that are detailing the trip to $1 million already or in the future:

Would the same magical number hold true reaching a negative net worth of $1 million? Would it make people think differently, act differently or approach debt differently?

The Search

As you can imagine, I didn’t find anyone (excluding famous people and corporations). Which, I’m actually pleased about. What I did find is interesting:

  1. I searched networthiq and found the person with the lowest net worth to be person 334442debt at ($367,535). However their user id leads me to believe that their net worth has actually gone down since they joined. In addition, I noticed that the comments include a goal to get out of debt in 24 months. That sounds pretty tough.
  2. The families highlighted on Oprah recently revealed only the amount of debt they had, $300,000 ($230,000 in student loans and $60,000 in cars… hmmm… that doesn’t add up), and not their net worth. Although not likely, they may actually have a positive net worth.
  3. CNN Money highlights a family that has a net worth of ($445,741) and it looks like they are going to keep going backwards for the near future. This could be the family that can make the negative millionaire status. Hopefully they will provide updates! (Credit to Living Almost Large for finding the family in: Bergmans…millionaire?)

Here’s some bloggers in the negative that I found:

I searched up and down and found lots of people in debt, but not $1 million. Apparently it’s tough to get close to a negative $1 million. Or the credit bureaus cut them off. Maybe we won’t ever know if there is a negative millionaire out there.

And so my search continues… ideally I don’t really want to find anyone in this state, as I want everyone to succeed financially. It was a fun challenge though!

Read the third article in the millionaire series when I look at our credit cards and lines and see if we can’t hit $1 million in credit limits!

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Comments to Do Negative Millionaires Exist?

  1. *takes a bow* And it’s 95% student loans for my DH. 5% car loans. The average rate for his loans is $11,000 per year in higher education. So…..if he was in school for another 90 years or so we’d be around negative 1 million. But this is hopefully his last year. If not, he’ll at least be working more next year.

    Mrs. Micah

  2. Actually, you should look at the net worth of farmers. I’m pretty sure my friend’s father is a negative millionaire, because when a single piece of equipment costs $300,000, you don’t have much choice.


  3. Article on australian new website today.,00.html

    I don’t know if this qualifies as “famous” debt, but it says she had a blance of -$1.5 Million over 41 cards


  4. @ Step 3: All I can say is wow!


  5. Check out Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiokasi. He explains the difference between good debt and bad debt. At one point Donbald Trump was about $3 Billion dollars in debt (all good debt). Most millionaires/ billionaires have lots of good debt and zero bad debt. Want to be rich? Buy assets


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