Self-made billionaire Mark Cuban doesn't want to raise spoiled kids.
"I tell them: After your health, my No. 1 thing for you all is, I don't want you to be entitled jerks," he told Steve Harvey on an episode of "STEVE on Watch."
The 62-year-old Dallas Mavericks owner, who made his fortune after his fair share of setbacks in his 20s, has three kids: two teenage daughters, 16 and 13, and a 10-year-old son. He makes it clear to them that, "I'm not going to write you checks. You don't just get a credit card. You can't just buy whatever you want."
If they want to buy something, they have to get a job and pay for it themselves, he says. That's what his oldest is starting to do: "My 16-year-old had an internship this summer. She worked and did a good job and made her own money — and when she makes it, she can spend it on whatever she wants."
That said, "she still saves it for the most part, so I give her credit," Cuban says.
While Cuban has a net worth of over $4 billion today, he wants his kids to understand that he wasn't always in the financial situation he's in now. He tells his kids that to be successful, "you're going to have to work for it," like he had to do.
Cuban grew up in a working-class family in Pittsburgh, Pa. His dad installed upholstery in cars, never making more than $40,000 a year, and his mom worked a variety of odd jobs to help pay the bills. "We weren't poor by a long shot, but we were solid middle class," he told Harvey.
In his early 20s, Cuban experienced what it feels like to be truly broke. He didn't have enough money to open a bank account and shared a $600-a-month three-bedroom apartment with five other guys. Cuban slept on either the floor or couch.
Ultimately, he hustled his way to the top. He sold his first company, MicroSolutions, for $6 million in 1990, which made him a millionaire at 32. A few years later, he co-founded a company called Audionet, which became Broadcast.com. In 1999, it was acquired by Yahoo for $5.7 billion, and Cuban became a billionaire at 40.
"People thought I might go work at a mill. My mom wanted me to learn how to lay carpet because she was concerned about my future. Nobody had high hopes for me," Cuban said in a profile of his career on "Shark Tank." "But I was a hustler."
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