Money Personality Types

Recently I read an article on CNBC about money personality types that helped me gain some insight into my financial habits. According to Ken Honda, a psychology expert, there are seven different money personal types that most people fall under. Learning which one you are can help you understand why you make certain spending, saving, and investing decisions. So today I thought I’d give you an overview of all of these personality types and let you know which one I am as well. Let’s dive in!

7 Money Personality Types

We’ve all heard of the concept of savers and spenders—some people are naturally thrifty while others have a harder time saving and enjoy shopping. But according to Ken Honda, there are a few more money personality types than that: 

  • Gamblers takes risks with money, such as choosing volatile investments. 
  • Compulsive spenders shop too much, especially when emotional. 
  • Compulsive savers love to set aside money for a rainy day and are very hesitant to spend money.
  • Saver-splurgers have elements of both savers and spenders. They’re good at saving money, but occasionally make large, unexpected impulse purchases. 
  • Compulsive money-makers are solely focused on making money, often to the detriment of their personal relationships. This type is usually good at saving money as well and is on the path to financial freedom. 
  • Then there are people who are indifferent to money. They don’t think about their finances a lot and don’t track their money closely. They don’t factor finances into big life decisions.
  • Worriers are scared they’ll lose their money no matter how much they have and frequently go over financial worst-case scenarios in their heads. 

I’m a Worrier and Saver-Splurger

I think that I’m a mix of two different personality types: saver-splurger and worrier. I’m good at sticking to a budget and saving money most of the time. But I do splurge occasionally, especially if I receive money I wasn’t expecting.

These splurges are usually things that have been on my wishlist for a long time that will get a lot of use. But I think it’s better to save up for more expensive wishlist items instead of buying them out of the blue, so I’m trying to get better at this. It only happens a few times a year at most, but I still want to reign it in.  

I’d also say I’m a worrier because I’ve dealt with financial anxiety off and on. For a few years I didn’t experience a lot of money worries, but I think the recession during the pandemic brought my financial anxiety back. I’ve been working with a therapist to try to deal with it for a few months, which has definitely helped. Even though another recession may be on the horizon, I feel pretty confident in my financial ability to weather it. But I’d still say I’m a worrier because I’m more prone to financial anxiety than other people. 

Which of these money personality types resonate with you? I don’t think you have to pick just one—you might feel like a combination of two or more types. But thinking about which type you might be can help you understand why you make certain decisions and get a better handle on your finances. Now that I know I’m a saver-splurger, I think I’ll be better able to stop myself from making large, unexpected purchases instead of impulse buying on autopilot. 

Other Money Personality Type Frameworks

Ken Honda’s description of money personality types is the most comprehensive one I’ve seen so far. There are other money personality type frameworks, but they usually only have four or five different profiles. 

Money Vigilance, Avoidance, Worship, and Status

For example, one study by Dr. Brad Klontz at Kansas State University found four different financial types—money vigilance, avoidance, status, and worship. People who are vigilant about money tend to be frugal savers who are hesitant about spending. Then there are those who avoid finances. They usually have a negative view of money and try not to think about finances as a result. They may feel like money is bad or they don’t deserve money, which leads them to give cash away to others. 

The study revealed that most Americans are money worshippers who feel like they can never have enough money. This type is prone to overspending and more likely to have debt as well. 

Finally, people who fit into the money status personality type tie their self-worth to their net worth and work hard to make more money. They may also splurge on expensive items to impress others and seem wealthier. 

I’m a Vigilant Money Worshiper

Within this framework, I think my personality is a mix of money worship and vigilance. My financial anxiety often makes me feel like I’ll never be truly financially comfortable or insulated from expensive emergencies like health crises. So I can relate to that feeling of never having enough money even though I don’t have any debt besides my mortgage. 

I’d say I’m also vigilant about money because I’m always making financial plans, checking my account balances, and trying to meet aggressive savings goals. I don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing, however. 

Which of these four types do you think you are? 

Wrapping Up 

Do you believe there are different money personality types that guide our spending and saving decisions? Are there any money personality types you relate to that I didn’t mention in this article? Share your thoughts in the comments section below! 

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