beyond (one's) means

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beyond (one's) means

Exceeding one's available finances. If you keep living beyond your means, you'll deplete your bank account before you know it. Unfortunately, I can't go on the trip anymore—it's just beyond my means these days.
See also: beyond, mean

beyond one's means

more than one can afford. I'm sorry, but this house is beyond our means. Please show us a cheaper one. They feel that a Caribbean cruise is beyond their means.
See also: beyond, mean

beyond one's means

Too costly for one, more than one can afford. For example, A second vacation this year is well beyond our means. The noun means here signifies "resources at one's disposal," a usage current since Shakespeare's time, as in Measure for Measure (2:2): "Let her have needful, but not lavish means." [Late 1800s]
See also: beyond, mean
References in classic literature ?
Having condoled with us on our loss and destitute position, she added that my father had been to blame for everything, in that he had lived beyond his means, and taken upon himself more than he was able to perform.
William had wanted to buy her a gold chain too, but the purchase had been beyond his means, and therefore not to wear the cross might be mortifying him.
Even after this he continued, with an astonishing lack of good taste, to live extravagantly and beyond his means (again in disregard of his own precepts), so that Prince Charles observed that he 'scorned to go out in a snuff.
Well, he seemed to think they were beyond his means," laughed Dorian.
The supplementary reference was filed in a corruption case against Dar in which the former finance minister has been accused of holding assets beyond his means.
CAMERAMAN accused of fraud has admitted he was "robbing Peter to pay Paul" after living beyond his means and having two new Aga cookers installed in his home.
Drummer Beano Baggot (Timothy Spall) lives in a trailer near his mother's garden, while Ray (Bill Nighy), the egocentric lead singer, lives well beyond his means with his groupie-turned-wife (Helena Bergstrom) on a country estate.
Stories were spread that he had been living beyond his means as a customs officer, and must therefore have been receiving favours.
One of their fellow Masons was living in the county-run retirement home because his need for financial assistance was beyond his means as well as the means of his Masonic lodge.