If you are reading this and hoping for a get rich scheme, I’m sorry to tell you that you won’t find it here. However, keep reading, because you will gain extensive knowledge on how to stop wasting your money and taking essential steps to rid yourself of your debt and save for the future. From the articles I write based on my experiences to the articles I feature written by my personal finance blog peers, the financial advice is endless. You still with me? OK, good!
Earlier in the week and I commented on how millionaires can indeed be frugal. More often than not, living a frugal lifestyle and learning the habits of saving money and avoiding unnecessary debt, you may end up in the millionaires club yourself. If you clip coupons like I do and routinely save $20 a week on groceries, there is a quick $80 a month savings that could be saved. Cut down your cell phone plan and get rid of cable could save another $80 a month. Just by offering a few quick ideas to save $160, you’re well on your way to becoming a millionaire.
If you’ve already started saving, congratulations, you’ve already made a big step by focusing on your retirement. If you haven’t started yet, don’t worry, you still have time to change. So how much would have you save each year in order to become a millionaire at age 65? Well, it depends on the annual return you will get. For that I will give you an idea of just how much a slight change in interest would affect your monthly savings goal. Here is the breakdown:
If you are starting at age 20 and earn an average annual rate of return of 6%, you would need to save $347 each month. At 8%, $185 a month and at 10%, only $96 a month. Remember the $160 savings I mentioned earlier? That is how easy it is to sock some extra cash away and easily become a millionaire by age 65 when you start early. This is the beauty of compounding interest in action.
If you are starting at age 30 and earn an average annual rate of return of 6%, you would need to save $660 each month. At 8%, $413 a month and at 10%, just over $253 a month. Even at age 30, the prospects of saving a million dollars is still a possibility. There are other obstacles such as a mortgage and children, but each little savings can add up.
If you are starting at age 40 and earn an average annual rate of return of 6%, you would need to save $1,329 each month. At 8%, $965 a month and at 10%, $694 a month. Just like in your 30’s, you still have a mortgage and are starting to face the realization that your children are going to college. Time has been on your side and with annual salary increases (and coinciding inflation) so saving around $1,000 per month isn’t a pipe dream especially if it makes sense to refinance your mortgage. Being a millionaire is still in plain sight!
If you are starting at age 50 and earn an average annual rate of return of 6%, you would need to save a whopping $3,042 each month. At 8%, $2,545 a month and at 10%, still a big chunk of change of $2,108 a month. Now it becomes more difficult with only 15 years left to save. Now you can really see the importance of starting early.
So what can you do to help your cause in becoming a millionaire?
- Start now! Time is not your enemy in this instance.
- Be sure that you are contributing the minimum to your 401k plan at work to get the full company match. If you don’t have a 401k, start contributing to a rIRA and max out your annual contributions.
- Pay off any high interest debt to avoid even further interest payments.
- Start investing…NOW…as you’ve seen already the market is starting to turn back up. Not that it is the sign that we are in for a gold rush, but our retirement portfolio is already up 9.1% in 2009, well above the market return. It is impossible to time the market and by dollar cost averaging, you can take the emotions out of investing.
- If you can manage, save even more each month than your target goal. As you have seen, compounding interest is your friend. Who knows, maybe you’ll even be a multi-millionaire!
- While you want to establish a emergency fund, be sure to you are focusing on your own retirement. Unless you are over the age of 50, you are unable to make any catch up contributions in your rIRA. You are on your own when it comes to retirement as we can no longer count on social security.
- Live below your means in order to reach your monthly savings goals.
- Win the lottery or become really good at professional sports.
When you think about it, I guess you can call this a get rich scheme, but a slow get rich scheme that actually works! The best part is that it’s open for anyone and everyone to realize their dream of becoming a millionaire.
Being in our 20’s, my wife and I have been extremely diligent in making sure we are saving money for our retirement. Making monthly contributions to our rIRAs comes only second to paying ourselves first. Who knows, by being young in this depressed market, it could propel us to the million even quicker!
Where do you fall? Are you on way to becoming a millionaire at your age? Have you even thought about how easy it could be?