You can retire a millionaire and you don’t need to have a big paycheck to do it. Don’t believe me? Let’s walk through this together.

In a recent article, Chris Hogan, national best-selling author of Retire Inspired: It’s Not an Age; It’s a Financial Number and SmartDollar contributor, shows us how to do it with as little as $35 a week.

Break It Down

Part of the challenge of retirement savings is that most of us don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. As a result, we’re not as familiar with the terms and the math can get complicated.

Chris admits he typically talks about putting 15% of your gross income into tax-advantaged retirement accounts like a 401(k) or an IRA, but if we’re not familiar with it, it can be hard to get our mind around how much 15% of our gross income is and we’re not always clear on how 401k’s and IRA’s work. (Thankfully, SPSCI has great partners at Bank Of Oklahoma who can help explain the various retirement account options you have!)

So, to help, let’s forget about the whole 15% of our gross income thing and just focus on $35 a week.

If you were to take $35 a week and put it in a good growth stock mutual fund with a rate of return of 10-12%, here’s what you’d have in your retirement account:

  • In 20 years, you could retire with $110,000 to $150,000
  • In 30 years, you could retire with $330,000 to $490,000.
  • In 40 years, you could retire with $890,000 to $1.5 million!

Millionaire Chart One

And, as Chris points out: “Keep in mind that this example doesn’t figure in pay raises. You’re likely not stuck at today’s income forever. Imagine how your nest egg could look if you increase your contributions as your income grows!”

But, I Don’t Have 40 Years To Invest!

If you are in your 20s and are reading this, don’t wait another second. You can retire a millionaire! Get going!

But, what about those of us who are a little further down the line? Is there any hope?

The answer is ABSOLUTELY!!

Here are a couple things Chris suggests to accelerate your retirement savings:

  1. Double up – If you doubled the weekly contribution from $35 a week to $70 a week, you could retire with $230,000 to $290,000 after 20 years and $660,000 to $980,000 after 30 years.
  2. Work a few extra years – Chris says: “There’s no rule that says you have to retire at 65. If you’re 45 years old, adding five more years to your timeline could boost your savings to $200,000–270,000 if you continue to contribute just $35 a week.”
    Millionaire Chart 2
  3. Get out of debt – Your number one financial tool is your income and it’s hard to use it to your advantage when all of it goes toward paying off credit cards, car loans and other debt. Think about how much more you could contribute to your retirement account if you didn’t have to give it all away to debt collectors!

Bonus

Take advantage of our company retirement match – We can help you get there faster! Our company leadership wants to help you prepare for the future by contributing to your 401(k) through a company match. SPS Companies Inc. will match half of your contributions, up to 4% of your wages. Don’t have a 401(k)? Don’t sweat it — visit the HR website for more information or talk to to the HR Rep at your location for help setting one up!

Make It Happen

It’s amazing how big of impact $35 a week can have, isn’t it? You don’t have to make big bucks to win with money, but you do need to know what to do with whatever dollars you are bringing in.

If you’re already taking advantage of the SmartDollar program offered through SPS Thrive, awesome! Stick with it and keep working the Baby Steps.

If you haven’t started yet, check it out. It’s offered free to any household within the SPS Family of Companies and it’s online, which means you can make it work around your schedule. SmartDollar will equip you with the game plan and motivation you need to win with money so that retirement can be enjoyable and not a mystery.