Figure Out a Retirement Plan (if under 50)

How much to save & how much you'll need in 10 years to be "on-track"


How Much to Save for Retirement

To Maintain Your Pre-Retirement Standard of Living

The average worker needs to save about 10% of pay each year (including employer contributions) to maintain their pre-retirement standard of living.

  • You need to save more if you haven’t saved that much or if investment returns were poor – as they were over much of the past 15 years.

For a Quick Estimate of how much you need to save, enter your age, normal yearly earnings, and current retirement savings.

  • Then go to Advanced, below, to see how much you need to save if you adjust your plan & assess your risks.

Please fill all required fields
    header-column  You
    input Yearly Income   
    input Age 
    input Retirement Savings   
    header-small Your Retirement Saving Targets:     
    input results-small Saving Rate, including employer contributions   
    input results-small Savings in 10 years    
    header-marker Advanced     
    header-orange Adjust Your Plan      
    input You Retire at Age 
    input You Invest in a 
    input After Age 45 You 
    header-orange Assess Your Risks      
    input Social Security Benefits Cut 
    input Investment Returns Over Next 10 Years 
    header-marker Our Projections      
    header-orange In today's dollars, for "average" workers      
    input results-small Household income in your 50s    
    input results-small Income Needed in Retirement (c.75%)    
    input results-small Social Security Benefits    
    input results-small Income Needed from Savings   
    input results-small Savings Needed at Retirement (25x)   
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    Under The Covers

    Our Assumptions & Disclaimer

    Retirement Age: The age you intend to retire.  Your spouse or partner, if you have one, is assumed to retire at the same time.

    Target Date Funds: TDFs are mutual funds that shifts your savings from stocks to bonds as you age.  A “more aggressive” TDF targets a more distant retirement age and invests more of your savings in stocks.  A “less aggressive” TDF targets a closer retirement age and invests less of your savings in stocks.

    Investment Returns: Average returns for stocks and bonds since 1927, less 0.25% in mutual fund fees. “Bad returns” are returns over the decade 2000-2009.

    Social Security Benefit Cuts: A 10% cut would eliminate about half the program’s financing shortfall, with increased revenues needed to eliminate the rest.

    You need to save MORE if your earnings and standard of living rise faster than average.  

    You also need to save LESS if your earnings and standard of living rise slower than average, if you will get an employer pension (that pays a set amount each month as long as you live) or if you will downsize or otherwise reduce your expenses in retirement.