In a new piece with WealthSimple, Kim Kardashian talks about maintaining her lifestyle while staying on a budget – the way she was raised.
In the interview, Kardashian talked about the role money and savings have played in her career. The business mogul was worth $175 million in September 2017 according to Time, a figure that is sure to have increased with the recent expansion of KKW Beauty and her other business ventures. With this amount, Kardashian can live pretty much however she wants, but she says she still sticks to a budget and likes to have strict control over her financial situation.
She said, “I have a budget. I don’t talk about specifics — I find that to be tacky and just inappropriate. I don’t talk about like, oh, this is my budget, and this is my shopping budget and my living budget. But I know what I spend monthly and what it costs to run my household and what it costs to run this home. It’s hard all the time to stick within a budget, for sure, but I think it’s a good guideline.”
She also explained that she has recently started downsizing her archives and the things she buys. She said her husband Kanye West is a much bigger shopper than she is, and that she has scaled back, much to the pleasure of her managers. She explained, “I don’t buy a lot. I used to buy myself something every birthday and just be like, okay, if I work hard all year then I can treat myself to something. Like a car or a pair of earrings. Something that I really wanted all year. But I’ve been getting rid of my cars. I used to really care. I loved cars. I still like them and I have a certain look, but I don’t care like I used to. I don’t need my flashy car. It doesn’t really matter to me.”
This is a far cry from the Kim Kardashian the world knew a decade ago. In one early episode of Keeping Up With the Kardashians, Kim spent a whopping $19,000 in one store during a shopping spree, driving her family to give her an intervention about her shopping addiction. However, the Paris incident changed the reality TV star’s personality. Since the incident, she has avoided wearing or travelling with very expensive jewellery. Her focus has also shifted from flashing her possessions to family and privacy. She said in the article, “Is it cheesy to just say the best investment I’ve made is I’ve invested in myself and believed in myself?”
Kardashian also said that despite managing a lot of affairs, she keeps control of her finances herself. She was taught to always be aware of how much she has and how much she can extend in any given situation. She said, “I’m really on top of my financial situation. I do everything. I see everything, write every cheque, I’m on top of every last detail. I was always taught to be like that. Like it’s definitely helpful to have a manager or someone pay your bills so they go out on time. But I think once you start giving too much control away, you could really just lose sight of what you have and what you need to do, especially if you spend a lot and have a big lifestyle.”
All this traces back to Kardashians childhood. She was born when her mother was 23 years old and her father was 36. From the age of 16, she got a job and was required to pay back money she used for things like a scratched car. She worked in her dad’s office for five years and did odd jobs in between. She was also required to sign a statement saying she would pay back her father for the transactions she made on his credit card.
She talked about how those rules changed her perspective on debt and spending, saying, “When I was working for my dad I would always want to buy things. I didn’t have a credit card when all my friends had credit cards. So I would put it on his credit card, and he would always make me sign something that I would have to pay him back. So I guess that’s debt. I mean, it was like a couple thousand dollars, but I’ve always been pretty conscious, never really overspent — I’ve always really saved.”
She conceded that despite thinking this was a great way to grow up and learn about the value of money, she does not know if she will be able to raise her own kids this way. She said, “I don’t know if it will be the same for my kids. It’s a different time. I don’t know if I’m going to do that. I’d have to discuss that with Kanye.”
Aware of the fact that her kids are growing up more comfortably and extravagantly than most, she added, “I worry about giving my kids too much. We don’t do gifts. They have to really earn it. But we talk about it all the time, about not getting too much and just trying to be as grounded and well rounded as possible.”
Kim Kardashian spoke with WealthSimple for their Money Diaries series, where they ask interesting people for their perspective on money.