Is A Million Bucks Enough to Make You Feel Rich?

A million bucks ain't what it used to be. Heck, it's not even enough to make (rich) people feel rich anymore:

Some 42 percent of the more than 1,000 millionaires surveyed by Fidelity said they did not feel wealthy.

Respondents had at least $1 million in investable assets, excluding any real estate or retirement accounts.

"Every person in the survey is wealthy," said Sanjiv Mirchandani, president of National Financial, a unit of Fidelity. "But they are still worried about outliving their assets."

So, how much is enough? $7.5 million is the magic number.


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I make 28,000 a year (I support a wife and child on that), if I had a million in a bank account I could give myself how much I make right now for 35 years. Heck, I could pay off my house and still live 30 years job free. Then I'd be 800 dollars a month richer.
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Hey, Miss C! I worked in radio for 15 years and was lucky to pay rent and keep two cats in food and homemade toys (no expensive jungle gyms or what have you).

I have a small Schwab account, an IRA, a 401K, savings and so forth, and I get my medical care from the VA.

I do not worry about "keeping up with the Joneses", and have saved a ton of money not "needing" to buy a leather couch, big flat screen tv and new car.
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@Erik Anderson: If you can earn 10% per year and you're a single-filer, about ~$20MM invested normally would get you $1MM after taxes per year.

There are private management firms that should [had damn well better] be able to beat the S&P 500's avg. return of 11%/yr for a fee-based compensation of 1% value of assets managed. (ie: if they manage $20MM, you'd pay them $200k/yr.

You'd need a lower rate if you had any invested in a Roth, as that's tax-free.

Also remember that historically, most bull-runs last 6-7 years and most bad market-crash-recessions last 4 years.

So the other legs of the chair you'd build out would be 4 years worth of Living Expenses (ie: 4x $100k if that's what you give yourself every year to live off) in an Emergency Account that's not invested and is hard for you to get to.

1 year of living expenses in a "slush-fund" money-market for periodic emergencies/oversights is also a good idea.
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@D Bozko - A lot of it depends on where you live. A million bucks goes a lot further in some places than others.

@PaulVI - I remember that study! Definitely an insight into the human psychology.
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@ Miss Cellania: I could easily retire on $15,000 a year.
That blows my mind. Just my health insurance and living expenses (sans mortgage) costs me more than that.

fretter. if you think at all about your future you are worried about retirement. Because I have a physical, labor intensive job I was planning on retirement at 60 until the economic downturn. Between cuts in salary, increases in expenditure and my retirement account going south, if I'm lucky my forecast is now 67.
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