Amish communities are very independent, mostly self-sufficient and quite successful. They know how to manage their money. An estimate of 95 percent of their businesses prosper compared to 50 percent for the rest of America. This is according to Erik Wesner, author of Success Made Simple: An Inside Look at Why Amish Businesses Thrive. An Amish millionaire is not something unheard of. Lorilee Craker, author of Money Secrets of the Amish: Finding True Abundance in Simplicity, Sharing and Saving, notes that many Amish people can put so much savings aside that placing a $400,000 down payment on a $1.3 million farm can be done without a sweat. All while raising 14 children and running multiple business.
Erik Wesner and Lorilee Craker show us ways Amish manage their money.
1. Buy Smart
The Amish make sure they buy things that are built to last. They don’t often buy something because of a splashy marketing campaign in the store, Craker said. “They always have their eyes on the big picture and the long term,” she said. The Amish buy almost everything in bulk. Amish often by 50 pound bags of oats, 400 pound bags of flour and 200 pound bags of sugar. Wesner said, “for the most part, they spend their money on value-oriented purchases.
2. Huge Savers
The Amish manage their money wisely by saving more than triple what the average American saves. “They’re literally horrified of debt” Craker said. It is almost unheard of for an Amish to have a credit card.
3. Successful Business Owners
Wesner said a key factor to Amish business owners’ success is an emphasis on smaller scale ethics and a willingness to work along side the average employee. When you build positive relationships like this on the job, your business is likely to be more profitable, he said. Unemployment is very rare in the Amish community. In addition, they are known to own multiple business to build wealth.
Amish businesses may include:
- Reclaiming Wood
- Saw Mills
- Buggy Making
Another way Amish manage their money is by recycling. Once clothes can’t be worn or passed down, many Amish will cut them into strips for quilts or rag rugs, Craker says. They recycle nearly everything. In addition: Craker chatted with an Amish women who was baking 15 pies for a Sunday church service. The woman had bought jars of apple butter in bulk to use in the desserts. Afterward, she cut off the tops and bottoms and used them in her garden to protect young tomato seedlings from the elements. Craker also said shopping at thrift stores and garage sales is a common trend for the Amish.
5. Growing Their Own Food
Craker said many Amish refer to themselves as “feinschmeckers,” which basically translates to Amish foodies. They eat often and appreciate a goo meal.
Many, but not all, also use traditional farming practices. This means growing food organically on their farms and gardens. That’s become a profitable venture as the organic fad has taken off across the country, Wesner said.
In Conclusion, Lorilee Craker said, “The Amish are not stressed out like we are. They’re not wondering ‘How am I going to make my car payment?’ They’re secure. They sleep peacefully because they know there’s money in the bank.”