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 ?
I went to see him because I was told he had a large black pearl which he was willing to sell cheaply, and when I discovered that it was beyond my means I began to talk to him about Strickland.
Along at first I was mentally offering a reward of five--six--seven--ten--dollars for that mouse; but toward the last I was offering rewards which were entirely beyond my means. I close-reefed my ears-- that is to say, I bent the flaps of them down and furled them into five or six folds, and pressed them against the hearing-orifice--but it did no good: the faculty was so sharpened by nervous excitement that it was become a microphone and could hear through the overlays without trouble.
I have lived beyond my means, yes, I have expensive tastes" Crime writer and TV scriptwriter Lynda La Plante admits facing a cash crisis
"Funnily enough, it is not a bad memory because at the time I was living beyond my means. I believed all the rubbish advisers told me and I came down with a heavy crash.
You dominate each waking hour You appear in all my dreams I can't escape your pulling power It's way beyond my means.