My mission statement for this Millennial personal finance blog is to prove to all Millennials that saving money and achieving wealth is not as challenging as most think it is. You don’t have to be a finance or accounting major or a CFP to pull off wealth either. I am a liberal arts major and my goal is to show you how any Millennial can achieve wealth.
If you make an effort to self-educate in personal finance, e.g. reading constantly and following this blog, all while saving diligently and living below your means, it is absolutely attainable. You don’t need a six figure income to do all of this. But, you have to pay yourself first and save early and often. The power of compounding interest is a Millennials biggest asset. More than any other generation because we have nothing but time before hitting retirement.
My Path to Becoming a Millennial Millionaire
To keep myself accountable, I will regularly track my net worth to prove to you really any Millennial can become a Millionaire. I am a digital marketer by day and my wife is a hairdresser. Together our combined income is really good, but not stellar. I would estimate that we make a bit more than the average household income and a decent amount more than most Millennials. We make slightly more than the average Millennial given that we are both on the older end of that generation. The first birth year considered “Millennial” or “Generation Y” is 1982 and the last is 2004.
The easiest way to track your net worth is through a personal finance budgeting tool like Mint.com (my personal fav). It will take into account all your cash accounts, investments, property (house, car, etc.), and subtract your debts/loans to give you an accurate net worth figure.
My goal is to have a net worth of one million dollars by the time I am 40. That is still a several years away for me…and I am sure most Millennial’s reading this are thinking that age is a LONG ways away for them as well! Well it is, but its a marathon not a sprint to achieving wealth. My follow-up goal after having a net worth of $1 million is to have a retirement account balance of one million dollars before I am 50 years old (cumulative from my wife and I). If I can stay on track and hit these goals then I believe my wife and I are well on our way to an early retirement at age 55-60.
Current Net Worth of an Average Millennial
(January 2018) = $393,004
My goal for 2018 is to increase my net worth by exactly 28%. Why am I being so specific with 28%? Well as of January 1, 2018 I have a net worth of 393,004 and a 28% increase in 2018 would equate to a gain of $110,041. Such an increase in 2018 would put me at $503,045. That is my goal for this year; to have a net worth of half of one million dollars by December 31, 2018. Follow me along my journey as I show all Millennials it is possible to become a millionaire. All it takes is diligent saving/investing, and living below your means (e.g. paying yourself first, always).
If my projections are accurate, I should be a Millennial Millionaire and have a net worth of $1,000,000 before the age of 40 (my estimate is roughly the year 2025).
How Much Does the Average Millennial Have Saved for Retirement?
At the end of 2017, between my wife and myself, together we have saved a combined $209,266.85. We feel great about where we stand, and even better about where we are headed. We make saving for retirement a priority by paying ourselves first and living well below our means. We didn’t always live this way, but we have for the last several years and it has helped us out (financially) tremendously.
My goal for 2018 is to increase our retirement account balance by $50,000, through contributions and returns. I think by December 31, 2018 we will have $265,000 saved for retirement. If my projections are correct, I believe we will have half of one million dollars saved for retirement within the next five years (by the year 2023) and just before the age of 40. By the end of the year 2023 I think we will have a retirement account balance of approximately $525,000.
And then I project us to have our biggest financial milestone ever completed within the next 9-10 years; a $1,000,000 retirement balance. So by the year 2028 I anticipate us having a retirement balance of 7-figures.
PS – for those of you wondering, we have never received an inheritance or any amount of money for that matter from anyone to date. We bought our first house in 2008 with a down payment we saved ourselves. It was a modest starter home for us. We then upgraded houses in 2014 with the equity earned from the six years at our first house. We keep growing our net worth because we stick to a budget and save aggressively. I strongly urge all of you Millennial’s following this blog to do the same.
My Personal Performance
I manage mine and my wife’s retirement accounts through Vanguard myself. I own all index funds. Below is a recap of my last 10 years.
- 10 years = 11.7%
- 5 years = 11.7%
- 3 years = 12.0%
- 1 year – 19.5%