How Far Could $1 Million Go In Retirement?

A million dollars used to be the ultimate target for retirement portfolios. Retiring as a millionaire brought status and confidence that you could live comfortably during your golden years.

If I retired with a million in...


If you retired with $1 Million in 1970:

It would be like retiring with over $7.8 million in 2023.1


If you retired with $1 Million in 1980:

It would be like retiring with over $3.7 million in 2023.1


If you retired with $1 Million in 1990:

$1 million would only go twice as far as it does these days.1

Where would $1 Million last the longest?

Just how far will it go these days?

The answer depends on how and where you live.

In retirement, as in real estate, location is everything (or, at least, it’s a lot). Below are some various examples of different locations within the U.S. showing how long $1 million could last. 

GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%12 Years, 11 Month(s)
5%15 Years, 0 Month(s)
7%18 Years, 4 Month(s)
GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%17 Years, 4 Month(s)
5%21 Years, 4 Month(s)
7%29 Years, 4 Month(s)
GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%19 Years, 9 Month(s)
5%25 Years, 2 Month(s)
7%38 Years, 5 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%17 Years, 1 Month(s)
5%21 Years, 0 Month(s)
7%28 Years, 8 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%20 Years, 11 Month(s)
5%27 Years, 1 Month(s)
7%43 Years, 11 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%14 Years, 10 Month(s)
5%17 Years, 8 Month(s)
7%22 Years, 6 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%21 Years, 6 Month(s)
5%28 Years, 2 Month(s)
7%47 Years, 8 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%15 Years, 9 Month(s)
5%19 Years, 0 Month(s)
7%24 Years, 11 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%20 Years, 4 Month(s)
5%26 Years, 1 Month(s)
7%40 Years, 11 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%19 Years, 4 Month(s)
5%24 Years, 5 Month(s)
7%36 Years, 6 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%13 Years, 3 Month(s)
5%15 Years, 5 Month(s)
7%19 Years, 0 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%19 Years, 6 Month(s)
5%24 Years, 9 Month(s)
7%37 Years, 1 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%19 Years, 1 Month(s)
5%24 Years, 0 Month(s)
7%35 Years, 5 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%19 Years, 8 Month(s)
5%25 Years, 1 Month(s)
7%38 Years, 0 Month(s)


GrowthHow long $1M Could Last
3%17 Years, 8 Month(s)
5%21 Years, 10 Month(s)
7%30 Years, 4 Month(s)

*Annual withdrawal amount is calculated by multiplying the 2021 BLS annual expenditures for age 65 years and older by the 2022 Council for Community & Economic Research Cost of Living index for each state. Calculations assume that interest is compounded once annually immediately after annual withdrawal. Calculations assume annual inflation rate of 3% and annual portfolio growth rates of 3%, 5%, and 7%, respectively. Taxes and fees are excluded. This hypothetical example is for informational use only and does not illustrate any specific product or investment. Past performance is no indication of future results.

Something is missing...

The estimates in the examples above cover just the basics, but they don’t fill in every piece of the puzzle. In fact, some key aspects of life in retirement aren’t included in the hypothetical scenarios shown in our examples.

01. Higher-than-average expenses

The average used to calculate expenses in retirement may not fit how you actually live. If you’re spending more or less than the average for your area, your expenses could drain your savings faster or make them last longer. That’s why you can’t fully rely on averages to anticipate how long a nest egg could last.

02. The Fun Stuff!

Retirement isn’t just about covering the basics to get by. You retired because you want to enjoy your time and do fun things, maybe even things you had put off while working or raising a family. Whatever that fun looks like for you, our estimates don’t capture these costs.

03. Performance Realities

Our calculations assumed stable annual growth for retirement portfolios. Of course, that’s not realistic or reliable. Investment performance can vary drastically from year to year. A personal retirement income plan should account for these types of ups and downs. It should also build in some flexibility for responding to performance changes while keeping you on track to hit your goals.

04. Health Care

Health care is a significant expense for more retirees. In fact, a healthy couple who retired at age 65 in 2022 could need $315,000 or more to cover their health care costs for the rest of their lives.2

05. Long-Term Care

About 70% of retirees who are 65 or older will need long-term care (LTC) at some point in their lives.3 These coasts vary by location and length of stay. Still, nearly 50% of retirees will need about a year of long-term care. Depending on where you live and whether you have LTC coverage, that could run anywhere from $54,000 to more than $168,000 in out-of-pocket costs every year. And those costs are only getting more expensive. By 2033, expect those costs to be at least 34% higher.4

06. Taxes

Many folks are surprised by the taxes they owe after they stop working. Tax laws are ever-changing and can have a significant impact on how much you owe in taxes during retirement. Fortunately, proactive planning may help mitigate the impact of taxes on your expenses.

07. Lifestyle

What do you want to do in retirement? What kind of extras do you want to enjoy and share with your loved ones? What does your dream lifestyle in retirement look like? The price tag associated with those dreams is a big variable in your personal retirement calculations.

The Million Dollar Question:

How Do You Want to
Live in Retirement?

Everyone’s retirement journey looks different and the averages leave out a lot of detail.

While benchmarking your likely expenses is good practice, tweaking them for your personal situation is critical. As is remembering that your expenses will change as you journey through your retirement. Talking with a financial professional is often a good place to start. 


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Investment advisory services are offered through Trek Financial, LLC., an SEC Registered Investment Adviser. Information presented is for educational purposes only. It should not be considered specific investment advice, does not take into consideration your specific situation, and does not intend to make an offer or solicitation for the sale or purchase of any securities or investment strategies. Investments involve risk and are not guaranteed. Be sure to consult with a qualified financial adviser and/or tax professional before implementing any strategy discussed herein. Trek 23-570