For those who don’t know, I have played my fair share of golf in my life. I’ve had a chance to play many different courses throughout the United States but I was playing this weekend and took a look at my scorecard only to realize how a round of golf and life are quite similar. A round of golf is 18 holes and within those 18 holes, a lot of things can happen and change. There are all different types of holes and different types of conditions that make no two rounds of golf the same just as no two lives are the same.
At Stewardship Advisors, we help clients at all different stages of life whether they are in their prime earning years or nearing retirement. It’s important to keep track of how much you’re saving so that you can attain the future you desire.
Like a golf scorecard, here is an idea of how much you should have saved for retirement by age:
How Much Should You Have Saved in Your 30s?
You’re going to want to have approximately 1x of your current salary saved. Paying down debt should be very important in your early years so that it is easier to accumulate savings later. You could also be saving for a down payment on a home or investing in your career by getting additional certifications. A good goal is to contribute 10-15% of your salary to a 401k. Remember when contributing to a 401(k) it is with “pretax” dollars meaning that your contributions are taken from your paycheck before taxes have been taken out. When your salary increases over time then so do your contributions thus helping to reach your goals.
How Much Should You Have Saved in Your 40s?
When you get into your 40’s, you should hope to have saved 2-3 times your salary. This decade you should be focusing on trying to save as much as possible. You should continue to pay down any debt you might have and try to optimize your savings as mentioned above. If saving for your child’s future is important, then this is a good time to start by utilizing a 529 or UTMA/UGMA account.
How Much Should You Have Saved in Your 50s?
By your 50s you should be trying to reach a goal of 5-7 times your salary. A good budgeting rule that will keep you on track for saving for retirement is the 50/30/20 rule. Popularized by Senator Elizabeth Warren and daughter Amelia Warren Tyagi, the 50/30/20 rule states that 50% should go to your needs (rent, grocery, utilities), 30% should be allocated to wants (hobbies, vacations, dining out) and the remaining 20% should go towards your savings.
How Much Should You Have Saved in Your 60s?
Your 60s will most likely be your highest-earning years and you will want to have saved 8-11 times your salary. Possibly downsizing your home, paying off any unwanted debts, and making sure you have a nice emergency fund to fall back on will be important things to consider before retirement. You are probably be going to be saving the most heavily in this decade as retirement is knocking at the door.
How to Create Your Own Savings Scorecard
What’s mentioned above are simply benchmarks and everyone’s goals are different. Just because you’re not on par for one hole/benchmark doesn’t mean you can’t make it up in the future. Not many people can beat benchmarks year after year or hole after hole (unless you are the late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il who shot a 34 or 38 under for 18 holes). Bumps in the road are going to happen but it doesn’t mean you can’t get your desired result in the end. At Stewardship Advisors, we want to walk alongside you similar to a caddy guiding you through all of life’s transitions so that you achieve the future you want.