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Ideal Location for The Millionaire Next Door: College Town USA

By Thomas J. Stanley on Dec 3rd, 2013 in Mentor's Corner

What a weekend for college football! [As a side note I always thought that college football is a better product than what is offered by the NFL.]  But when I watch a collegiate game, no matter how exciting, I can’t help thinking beyond the gridiron.  

University towns often provide an ideal environment for small business enterprises.   The cultural amenities that are the fabric of these communities rival those found in larger cities.  But generally the cost of living and perhaps, more importantly, the cost of  human resources are significantly less.   College towns are filled with a variety of young scholars who make outstanding workers.  And it is more than an army of undergraduates seeking short-term, part time employment. There are countless numbers of spouses who need employment due to their responsibility of “putting their husbands/wives” through graduate school, law school, medical school, etc.  Because of the enormous supply of this type of talent, wages in such communities are nowhere near what is demanded in large metropolitan areas.

Given these facts, I’m not surprised that many top auctioneering companies are located in or near university towns.  Remember that auctioneers are among the most productive occupational groups in transforming income into wealth.  But there are a variety of other categories of business that thrive in College Town, USA.  Beer distribution and real estate management of income producing property are two others. 

Of course as a former business school professor who’s now in the research and information business,  I know first hand the enormous benefits of being located near a major university and its eminent scholars in every conceivable field.  I should mention that the three most recent national surveys I developed were carried out by The Survey Research Center at The University of Georgia.  The students who worked on my projects at the Research Center were grade A students in terms of GPA and had SAT scores that were in the top 1% or better.  Needless to say, I have never seen such clean and accurate data!  In addition, the quality and depth of the statistical/computer analysis prepared by the staff was unparalleled.  Yet the cost of doing all of this was substantially less than if I had contracted with a commercial research organization. 

The archtype millionaire next door is the owner/manager of a highly productive small business.  If you’re inclined to follow his lead, give strong consideration to locating in College Town, USA. 

2 responses to “Ideal Location for The Millionaire Next Door: College Town USA”

  1. EL @ MoneyWatch101 says:

    Yes I have heard in the past that property investors tend to buy up multiple investor properties in those college town areas beacuase of the readily availble renters aka college students.

  2. Michiko says:

    I’ve enjoyed your blog and your books a lot and I keep coming back for more. These days I also come across a lot of literature on increasing “income segregation.” I would be interested in your take on the trend. Is it changing the definition of the typical millionaire next door? Do many of your millionaires end up living in Super Zips after they are comfortable so they don’t have to worry about real estate prices falling from living in a middle of the road neighborhood?

    College towns probably do make the best sense in today’s world, it seems like there are increasingly less choices for those of us who want quality and affordability at the same time…

    Thanks!

    Charles Murray’s super zips discussed on the Washington Post:
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/local/2013/11/09/washington-a-world-apart/

    list of super zips:
    http://www.e-stat.go.jp/SG1/estat/Csvdl.do?sinfid=000012989699

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