The seven-figure club is chock-full of surprises.
Thanks to rebounding real estate prices and a bull market in stocks, millionaires have been staging a comeback since the financial crisis. The number of American households with more than a million in assets has hit 9.6 million, according to the Spectrem Group, finally surpassing the pre-recession high of 9.2 million. (And that’s a million bucks without counting your primary residence).
If you want to join their ranks, take this quiz to figure out your best path, then adopt one of these seven strategies to get there. But first, get to know your future peers.
1. Millionaires are most at home in Maryland.
Maryland has more millionaires per capita than any other state—7.7% of all households—according to the Phoenix Global Wealth Monitor. New Jersey, Connecticut, and Hawaii are also packed with millionaires, and oil-rich North Dakota is gaining fast, jumping from No. 43 to No. 29 in the 50-state ranking in one year.
2. One in 21 New Yorkers is a millionaire.
Walk down New York City’s Fifth Avenue, and you’re bound to brush past a few millionaires. Some 4.6% of the city’s residents are worth $1 million or more, according to another take on the millionaire population by Spear’s. Monaco, Zurich, and Geneva are the only cities that can claim more rich folks per capita.
3. For the first time, a majority of members of Congress are millionaires.
Congress has more millionaires than ever, according to an analysis of financial disclosure reports by the Center for Responsive Politics. At least 268 members of the House and Senate are worth $1 million or more. The richest is former businessman turned legislator Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., who has an estimated net worth of $464 million, the Center found.
4. Millionaires fret about retirement too!
Almost a third of millionaires worth $5 to $25 million worry about being able to retire when they want to, the Spectrem Group found. And 44% of those with $1 million and $5 million in assets have the same concern.
5. Millionaires are not necessarily super savers.
You don’t have to sock away 30%, 40%, or 50% of your income to amass $1 million (though that would help get you there faster). In an analysis of 401(k) savers who made less than $150,000 a year and still had more than $1 million in their plans, Fidelity found that those millionaires saved only 14% a year on average.
Their secrets? Save steadily, of course. And let the company do some heavy lifting. Fidelity’s 401(k) millionaires saved 19% on average when employer contributions were included, and 28% of their account balances came from the match. In fact, a new study from the Center for Retirement Research confirms that saving 15% a year for three decades is enough for a comfortable retirement…
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