People who buy lottery tickets hope to become millionaires. But some people, ticket-buyers or not, are more apt to reach millionaire status than others. A study by Fidelity Investments revealed the six most common wealth-building factors the most successful wanna-be millionaires have on their side. The key is being part of the ‘emerging affluent,’ or those who have the resources and the interest/ability to live the dream.
How many of these six factors are on your side?
- Time horizon – Most people on track to reach a million average 40 years old and have about 27 working years left. If you’re older than that and haven’t reached the level of the emerging affluent (defined as investors ages 21 to 54 with investible assets over $250,000), then the clock is working against you.
- Career – The emerging affluent, given their age, still have time to climb the corporate ladder. But a lot depends on your profession. If those at the top end of your business are not millionaires, it may be a sign it will be tough for you to become one.
- Income – Emerging affluent workers have a household income of $125,000, about 2.5 times the median U.S. household, while working millionaires have an income of $200,000 annually. If your salary is closer to the national median, Fidelity says, you have a lot more work to do to reach seven figures.
- Self-made status – The emerging affluent have worked to make themselves richer, rather than relying on inheritances or family generosity, Fidelity says. Some 80% of the emerging affluent have earned or increased their assets on their own.
- Long-term focus – Studies of wealthy Americans show they are focused on the long-term and making their money grow over time, rather than worrying about what’s happening to their money right now. Short-term moves are made because they feel right in the moment, but long-term focus is essential to achieve real savings growth.
- Investing style – The emerging affluent invest aggressively, taking on riskier investments with the promise of bigger long-term payoffs. They tend to be hands-on investors, making their own decisions.
If you don’t have all of these six factors on your side, Fidelity’s experts advise, focus on saving and investing more aggressively, expanding your time horizon, and staying focused on long-term results without worrying about hitting seven figures.