Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

3 Steps to Retiring With $2 Million or More

By Katie Brockman – Sep 10, 2021 at 5:30AM

Key Points

  • The average worker expects retirement will cost around $1.9 million.
  • Even if you're not wealthy, it's possible to save $2 million or more.
  • Your saving strategy can make or break your retirement plans.

Motley Fool Issues Rare “All In” Buy Alert

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

It's possible to retire a multimillionaire with the right plan.

As retirement becomes more expensive, $2 million may be a realistic savings goal. In fact, the average worker expects to need roughly $1.9 million to retire comfortably, a recent survey from Schwab Retirement Plan Services found.

If you're earning an average salary, saving that much money may not seem feasible. With the right strategy, though, it's easier than you might think to become a retirement multimillionaire. By following these three steps, a $2 million retirement fund may be within reach.

Hundred dollar bills against a yellow background.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. Start investing now

Time is your most valuable resource when it comes to saving for retirement, so the sooner you begin investing, the easier it will be to reach your $2 million goal.

Even if you can't afford to save much, you're better off starting to invest now than waiting a few years. Every year counts, and if you put off investing for too long, you'll need to save significantly more each month to reach your goal.

If you're having trouble setting money aside for retirement, try building your savings goal into your budget. Set your savings on autopilot by transferring a set amount from your paycheck or your bank account into your retirement fund each month. When saving becomes a priority, it will be easier to save consistently and stick to your plans.

2. Choose the right investments

Investing in the stock market is a fantastic way to build wealth, and you can earn significantly more than if you were to park your cash in a savings account. However, it is important to choose the right investments, because not all stocks are created equal.

As you're shopping around for investments, consider how much work you're willing to put in. If you're a hands-off type of investor, S&P 500 ETFs are a smart option. If you're eager to spend time researching different companies, buying individual stocks may be your best choice.

Regardless of where you invest, focus on strong investments that are likely to perform well over the long term. It may seem counterintuitive, but you'll generally make more money with slow but steady investments than you will with stocks that promise to make you rich overnight.

3. Stay invested for as long as possible

Again, the more time you have to invest, the easier it will be to accumulate $2 million. When you invest a little each month for decades, you can become a multimillionaire even on an average salary.

Say, for example, you're earning $50,000 per year and can set aside 15% of that toward your retirement fund. That comes out to around $625 per month. Keep in mind, too, that if you're saving in a 401(k), you may be entitled to matching contributions from your employer, which will account for a portion of your monthly savings goal.

Let's also say you're earning a 9% average annual return on your investments, which is just under the market average. At that rate, here's roughly how much you'd have saved depending on how many years you let your money grow:

Number of Years Total Savings
10 $114,000
20 $385,000
30 $1,022,000
40 $2,534,000

Data source: Author's calculations via Investor.gov.

Reaching $2 million in savings is possible, as long as you have the right strategy. By starting to save early in life, choosing the right investments, and continuing to invest consistently for as long as possible, you can maximize your earnings and retire a multimillionaire.

The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
356%
 
S&P 500 Returns
118%

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 11/26/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.