Average Retirement Savings – Where Do You Fit?

The amount of money you will need in retirement savings is, at best, an educated guess. There are many variables, primarily, to what age you will live. Plus, even if you have funds set aside for emergencies, unexpected events can be far more costly than even the most prudent saver could have anticipated. That said, it makes sense to plan as best you can for, hopefully, a long and happy retirement; and besides, it’s always nice to see where we fit in compared to the rest of the crowd.  

Survey of Consumer Finances

This survey, published in 2017 by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, provides detailed information regarding U.S. family finances. Regarding retirement savings, it reports average and median household amounts for various age groups accordingly:

  • Under age 35 average savings: $32,500 median savings: $12,300
  • Age 35 -44 average: $100,100 median: $37,000
  • Age 45 – 54 average: $215,800 median: $82,600
  • Age 55 – 64 average: $374,000 median: $120,000
  • Age 65 – 74 average: $358,400 median: $126,000

Bureau of Labor statistics

According to a 2016 publication looking into the spending of older Americans, households with a reference person age 65 – 74 spent an average of $48,885 a year. If a retirement were to last 20 years, that would come to $977,700.

Retirement savings by salary

Some financial planners suggest a plan based on salary, which looks like this:

  • Have the equivalent of your starting salary saved by age 30
  • Have two times your salary saved by 35
  • Have three times your salary saved by 40
  • Have four times your salary saved by 45
  • Have six times your salary saved by 50
  • Have seven times your salary saved by 55
  • Have eight times your salary saved by 60
  • Have 10 times your salary saved by 67

Fitting in

Statistics such as these are interesting, but the real issue is where each individual is. Many people don’t begin saving when they are young and others have detours along the way. The reality is that it is never too late to start saving, and one formula does not work for all individuals or families. If you know someone who seems a little lost along the financial journey to retirement or could benefit from a new approach, please fill out our referral form.


The information contained herein is based on internal research derived from various sources and does not purport to be statements of all material facts relating to the securities mentioned. The information contained herein, while not guaranteed as to the accuracy or completeness, has been obtained from sources we believe to be reliable. Opinions expressed herein are subject to change without notice.


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