Net Worth by Age: Here’s Exactly How to Know How You Compare FinanciallyBuilding Wealth
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Net worth by age is possibly the most important determinant in financial status.
It can be difficult to pinpoint exactly where you stand in the financial hierarchy.
Additionally, the USA is without a doubt among the most polarized countries when it comes to income inequality, home to the abject poor and the incredibly rich.
Knowing where you are, where you want to be, and how you intend to get there are important considerations for climbing the socioeconomic ladder.
Net Worth by Age
The first place to start before introducing any level of sophistication is to sort the average net worth by age.
Net worth is the value of total assets minus total debt for a particular individual.
Accessing net worth by age can be problematic, and there are different data sources available.
It is important to use Federal Reserve data where possible.
Polls and surveys can give dramatically different results on net worth by age figures.
The following are the average wealth by age category based on Federal Reserve Data from 2016:
- 18-24 – $93,982.80
- 25-29 – $39,565.88
- 30-34 – $95,235.53
- 35-39 – $257,581.86
- 40-44 – $316,660.61
- 45-49 – $599,194.17
- 50-54 – $838,702.95
- 55-59 – $1,150,037.78
- 60-64 – $1,180,377.62
- 65-69 – $1,056,483.97
- 70-74 – $1,062,427.63
This Is a Basic Aggregation
Net worth by age should give an accurate absolute indication as to where you are relative to your peers.
However it is a very basic aggregation, and there are infinite ways to drill into the data, such as gender, race, education, location, occupation, marital status, homeowner, etc.
It is also helpful to drill down for your exact age instead of age bracket, as there could be outliers of certain ages that are wealthier than others.
For example, the average net worth of somebody who is 29 could be greater than the average net worth of somebody who is 25, though they are in the same grouping above.
Various Definitions of Wealth
Additionally, you could be relatively wealthy by average age yet relatively poor by occupational or educational standards.
There is an infinite number of drill downs and filters that can be used to give a better indication of how you compare with your peers in terms of net worth by age.
For an exact, up to date and accurate measure of how you fare compared to peers, consider Status Money, a site dedicated to helping people assess their financial positioning, while also providing a number of wealth management tools to plan ahead for the future.
The Importance of Net Worth by Age
Net worth by age is one of the most important wealth distinctions.
Trends set in earlier years tend to repeat, as those who are wealthy in their twenties will often continue to be wealthy.
Habits Are Hard to Change
And those who are relatively poor will also typically continue to be poor.
So people in their twenties need to make the right choices to make sure they are in the right place to succeed economically as much as possible.
Having a large net worth is far better than having a large net income, as the government targets income more than wealth.
It is possible to live in a multi-million dollar mansion and get health care subsidies as long as you earn less than $94,000 per year in many states.
Wealth is a relative measure, and it is best to class wealth based on age as opposed to having a standardized figure for everybody.
According to Financial Samurai, the following is what is considered rich (top 1%) by age:
- 25 – $380,000
- 30 – $760,000
- 35 – $1,520,000
- 40 – $2,280,000
- 45 – $3,420,000
- 50 – $4,560,000
- 55 – $6,080,000
- 60 – $7,600,000
- 65 – $9,120,000
- 70 – $7,600,000
- 75 – $6,080,000
- 80 – $5,300,000
Socio-Economic Breakdown & Classifications
There are many differing opinions as to what constitutions lower, middle, and upper classes.
Classes are relative so even if rich by world standards it is possible to be in the “lower” classes when living in the USA.
It can get even more complicated when using “upper middle” or “lower upper” as forms of classification.
Classes are typically categorized by income as opposed to net worth.
The median income for a US house is $59,000, which means that 50% of Americans households will have an income above this figure while 50% will have an income below.
Net Worth Is a Better Measure Than Income
While this can be a good measure, accessing net worth is far more fruitful than accessing net income for a variety of reasons.
It is puzzling why so much focus is put on income as opposed to net worth in terms of social classes.
For example, a non-working person could be categorized as of the poverty class with assets in the millions.
Classes are also sometimes defined by university education and home ownership, but this is misleading for lots of different reasons.
The best absolute measure of class is net ownership as it is the most accurate and paints the biggest picture.
A university degree might pay in the future, but net worth is an analysis of value as it stands right now.
Is $1,000,000 Net Worth Rich?
Generally speaking, those with a net worth above $1 million are said to be “rich,” as it is seen as a tipping point for those who have it “made.”
However, many millionaires actually identify themselves as middle class, possibly because they are used to socializing with individuals of high net worth.
Less than 10% of millionaires actually categorize themselves as wealthy, rich or upper class, which many may find surprising.
Is $5,000,000 Net Worth Middle Class?
One survey has indicated that 72% of those worth more than $5 million view themselves as middle class.
This is why an accurate status tracking tool can actually recalibrate people’s often misleading and simply inaccurate perceptions about their socio-economic status.
People who are exceptionally wealthy can view themselves as middle class merely because of the company they are keeping. And it is quite possible that people who are in the middle classes believe themselves to be of the lower classes when this is not the case.
But there are some categorizations which actually regard this level of wealth as simply middle class. Take the following from HCBU Money:
- Uber Wealthy – $25 Billion +
- Upper Wealthy – $10-$25 Billion
- Wealthy – $1-$9 Billion
- Uber Rich – $500-$999 Million
- Upper Rich – $100-$499 Million
- Rich – $10-$99 Million
- Upper Middle – $500,000- $9 Million
- Middle – $50,000 – $499,000
- Lower Middle – $10,000-$49,000
- Poor – $10,000 and below
A Simple View of Socio-Economic Classes
A simple model of social classes in the USA includes old money, new money, middle class, working class, working poor and poverty.
Sometimes it can be difficult to attain net worth by age as informed data takes a while to get collected and published.
The USA is a world leader in terms of social mobility, by far, and people move in and out of classes all the time, contrary to popular belief.
Old Money, New Money, and Everybody Else
According to the Washington Times, the millionaire class is booming.
The following is a simple model to work with in terms of socio-economic classes when exact figures of net worth are hard to find, as they often can be without a useful wealth status tool.
- Old money is the super-rich consisting of the Du Ponts, the Rothschilds and the Kennedys. The wealth is inherited and generational.
- New money includes celebrities and entrepreneurs who have had their wealth for a generation or two.
- The middle class consists of professionals whose jobs relate to their university degree. It is sometimes called the white collar class. Doctors, lawyers, and teachers are part of the middle class. This class is most often split up into three tiers.
- The working class may have an education but tend to work in hands-on and technical jobs, such as carpenters, electricians, and police officers. This class is sometimes called the blue collar class.
- The working poor are those who are working but on little income with no benefits, often called the “last hired and first fired.”
- The poverty class consists of those who have no source of income or home.
Ideologically, there are two camps when it comes to socio-economic classifications.
There are those who believe that it is possible to work through the classes with enough determination and there are those who believe that all wealth is a result of societal norms and that the cards are stacked against certain groups.
The reality is likely a mix of individual action against enforced structural biases.
But statistically speaking, the majority of US millionaires are actually self-made, without inheriting vast sums of wealth.
Net Worth Composition
What actually makes up a person’s net worth?
Depending on the net worth of the individual or group, the portfolio is likely to consist of different assets.
Those earning under $10,000 are likely to rely more heavily on vehicles and their home, which will make up a significant part of their overall net worth.
Those earning less than $100,000 are likely to have a similar composition but with less of a reliance on vehicles and an increased reliance on retirement plans.
Those earning less than $1 million rely more heavily on businesses and real estate. Those earning less than $10 million rely twice as heavily on business interests.
This trend continues as business interests make up large proportions of net worth the higher the net worth actually is.
The net worth of a billionaire consists primarily of business interests, along with some managed assets.
People with a net worth less than $1 million will rely heavily on a primary residence and retirement plans.
Status Money – A Tool for Wealth Tracking and Comparison
It was founded in 2016 in order to help people understand wealth objectively and reach their financial goals.
The reality is that there is too much data to analyze when it comes to financial monitoring.
Status Money has made the wealth tracking and management process streamlined and easy to manage, with helpful charts and key indicators.
Aggregates All the Factors
Trying to track your net worth by age can be a daunting task as there are so many factors that come into play.
As evidenced by the fact that the majority of millionaires consider themselves as middle class, while the middle and lower classes view the $1 million mark as a sign of true wealth, people are not good at objectively analyzing their position.
If you want to know how you really rank compared to your peers, then Status Money can provide you with objective analysis, which is essential.
Objective and Non-Biased
It is nearly impossible to evaluate your position without non-biased help.
People have many differing opinions and beliefs about wealth and socio-economic class, which can be seen from the wide variety of socio-economic classification systems and contradictory views on wealth and status.
The tool can contrast your finances against people across the USA and also serves to help people reach their financial goals.
Income and expenditure can be tracked and monitored, and it has easy integration with other accounts and applications.
Status Money’s Database is Ever-Increasing
Your spending activity and financial status can be cross-referenced against a large database of other US individuals.
Credit card information, auto loans, mortgages, personal loans, student loans and more can be tracked and monitored on the application and opportunities for cutting down on rates are highlighted within the tool.
Ultimately, Status Money is all about empowering individuals, and they have informed knowledge about real and objective wealth trends and patterns.
Once these trends and patterns are clear, it is possible for people to proceed with building wealth and achieving their goals by taking advantage of the latest data and the best interactive tools.
Of course, in order to empower people to make wealth, the application is free, and always will be.
For people who are serious about reducing debt, creating wealth and comparing net worth by age along with other variables, Status Money is perfect.
A True Assessment of Net Worth
If you want to get a clear picture of where you stand and observe your position relative to your peers, then a tracking tool is needed.
Net worth is the most important figure in terms of accessing financial wealth.
An all-encompassing wealth tracking and comparison platform is a pre-requisite in a world overladen with misleading data and mistaken beliefs about socio-economic status and wealth levels.
Logan is a practicing CPA, Certified Student Loan Professional, and founder of Money Done Right, which he launched in 2017. After spending nearly a decade in the corporate world helping big businesses save money, he launched his blog with the goal of helping everyday Americans earn, save, and invest more money. Learn more about Logan.