Peter Smith is the founder of Christian Walls, a company that produces and sells premium religious-themed wall art to households and churches across the country and the world. His previous work as a financial analyst enabled him to launch the entrepreneurial endeavor, which enriches him spiritually and financially — although he’s now more concerned with the former than the latter.
On his website, he highlights his charity and global volunteer work, stating, “I no longer seek to make money.” However, even though he’s made enough of it to drive any car he wants, he prefers to use his God-given feet.
“As a self-made millionaire, people often assume that I live a lavish and extravagant lifestyle, complete with a fleet of luxury cars,” said Smith. “However, to their surprise, I am a car-free millionaire. I don’t own a single car despite having the means to do so. This decision may seem strange to some, but for me, it has been a carefully considered and beneficial choice.”
Here are the reasons that steered that choice.
For many people, having a car is a necessity, not a luxury. Smith knows that, but in his case, he would have viewed buying one as a splurge — and he didn’t get to where he is today by making unnecessary big-ticket purchases.
“Initially, the idea of not owning a car may seem absurd, especially for someone who can afford it,” said Smith. “But for me, it was a matter of personal values and priorities. Growing up, my family didn’t have a lot of money and I learned to live frugally. When I first started my career, I continued to live modestly and saved every penny I could. As my wealth grew, I never felt the need to splurge on material possessions like cars.”
He Uses the Money Saved on Car Expenses To Expand His Wealth
Although Smith is no longer driven by the need to make money, he’s certainly not eager to waste it, either.
“One of the main reasons I chose to live without a car is financial,” he said. “Owning a car comes with a lot of hidden costs, from insurance and maintenance to gas and parking fees. These costs may seem insignificant to someone with a high income, but for me, every expense mattered. By not owning a car, I save thousands of dollars every year and put it towards investments or experiences that truly bring me joy.”
Frugality is one value that Smith holds dear, but ecological consciousness ranks high on his list, too.
“Not owning a car aligns with my environmental values,” he said. “Cars contribute significantly to air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. By not owning a car, I am doing my small part in reducing my carbon footprint. Additionally, I don’t have to worry about the stress and frustration of being stuck in traffic or searching for parking spaces.”
Every mile you drive is a missed opportunity to increase your physical and mental wellness — and maybe your lifespan.
“Living car-free also allows me to prioritize a more active and healthier lifestyle,” said Smith. “I walk or bike whenever possible, which not only saves money but also allows me to get some exercise and fresh air. In situations where I do need to travel longer distances, I use public transportation or rideshare services. This not only saves me the hassle of driving, but it also gives me the opportunity to meet new people and have interesting conversations.”
Living without the convenience of a car is not a choice that’s practical or even possible for everyone, but for Smith, the decision matched his lifestyle and philosophy.
“In the end, living as a car-free millionaire has allowed me to save money, stay true to my values and live a more active and fulfilling life,” he said. “I understand that this lifestyle may not be feasible for everyone, but for me, it has been a rewarding and empowering choice. So, if you’re a fellow self-made millionaire considering a car-free lifestyle, I encourage you to give it a try. You may just find that you don’t need four wheels to reach your definition of success.”
That doesn’t mean he doesn’t occasionally miss the convenience of owning a car.
“Of course, there have been challenges along the way,” said Smith. “Public transportation is not always reliable, and rideshare costs can add up quickly. But for me, these are minor inconveniences compared to the freedom and financial benefits of not owning a car.”
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