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How Many Millionaires Are in the U.S.?

Is the American dream still alive today? Can you build wealth that lasts in this economy? These are questions we hear all the time. And we want you to know the answer to them is yes!

If you know anything about Ramsey Solutions, you know we like busting the myth that millionaire status is out of reach for most Americans. That’s right! It’s not impossible to become a millionaire in today’s economy. 

But it does take a change of mindset. 

“Normal” people will say you need to borrow money and use debt for today’s society to function. False! You’ll also hear that you’re “not truly living” if you decide to skip a vacation or renovation project to pile up money for a far-off savings goal. The truth is you work too long and too hard to have nothing to show for it in retirement except for a measly social security check that barely covers a can of dog food.

The truth is, we all have the resources available today to form a game plan that could make us millionaires. Don’t believe us? We’re going to show you how many people around you have already reached millionaire status.

How Many Millionaires Are in the U.S.?

Do you know how many millionaires are in the U.S. today? The answer is there are about 12 million millionaire households, according to Spectrem Group’s Market Insights Report 2020.1 And that number is growing.

Be confident about your retirement. Find an investing pro in your area today. 

Be confident about your retirement. Find an investing pro in your area today. 

Here’s the thing: Millionaires don’t look the way you probably think they do. It might surprise you to find out there are millionaires living among you. You might’ve even passed one in the grocery store! If that sounds bizarre, wait until you hear what’s coming next: You can join them.

That’s right—you could be the next millionaire! Our team recently worked on the largest study of millionaires ever conducted and discovered most millionaires are ordinary, everyday people who follow basic money practices.

What Is a Millionaire?

A millionaire is someone who has a net worth of a million dollars. Net worth is what you own minus what you owe. For example, say you have no debt besides a mortgage, a sizable emergency fund and a retirement account. Subtract what’s left of the mortgage debt from everything else and you’ll know your net worth.

The majority of a person’s net worth usually includes money invested in a retirement account or real estate. While Spectrem Group doesn’t count a primary home as part of the assets of their 12 million U.S. millionaires, we think it only makes sense to include your home as part of your net worth. So when you look at it that way, there are way more than 12 million millionaires living in the U.S. today.

If you want to dig deeper into your personal net worth, use our free tool—the Net Worth Calculator. It’s quick, it’s simple, and it suggests the next steps for your unique situation.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Millionaire?

Okay, so how fast are our fellow Americans becoming millionaires? Well, these people didn’t magically wake up one day with a net worth of $1 million. It takes decades of working, saving and investing to become a millionaire—in fact, only 5% of the millionaires we surveyed for the study got there in 10 years or less. It took most of them an average of 28 years to hit the million-dollar mark, and most of them reached that milestone at age 49.

Which States Have the Most Millionaires?

If there are more than 12 million millionaires in the U.S., some of them must be in your state. Right? You’re about to find out! We used the research from our study to break down the number of millionaire residents in each state. It shouldn’t surprise you to learn that California and New York are the top two states populated with millionaires. But if you don’t live anywhere close to those places, take a look to see if your state made the top 10. Here are the states with the most millionaires:

  1. California
  2. New York
  3. Florida­
  4. Texas 
  5. Illinois
  6. Pennsylvania 
  7. Arizona
  8. New Jersey 
  9. Ohio 
  10. Massachusetts

If your state doesn’t make the top 10 list for number of millionaires, don’t worry. Just because there are fewer millionaires in your state, it doesn’t mean you have less of a shot at becoming one. In fact, your state might just have a lower population than other states, which could be the reason for a lower number of millionaires. So let’s look at this in a different way. Our team also collected data to find which U.S. cities have the most millionaires based on percentage of the population. Here’s the top 10: 

  1. New York, NY: 8.51%
  2. Los Angeles, CA: 5.34%
  3. Chicago, IL: 4.45%
  4. San Francisco, CA: 3.46%
  5. Washington, D.C.: 3.36%
  6. Philadelphia, PA: 3.26%
  7. Phoenix, AZ: 2.97%
  8. St. Louis, MO: 2.37%
  9. Tampa, FL: 1.88%
  10. Orlando, FL: 1.68%

Did you realize how many millionaires are in or around these cities? Well, now you know. If you’re still not convinced it’s possible to achieve millionaire status where you live, check out what our research has to say about where millionaires live. Here’s what we found:

  • More than 50% of millionaires live in a neighborhood where the average household income is below $75,000 a year.
     
  • Nearly one-third of millionaires live in a zip code where home values are below the national median average.
     
  • Six out of 10 millionaires live in a house valued under $500,000.

Can you relate to any of those numbers? With stats like that, it’s likely there are millionaires in your neighborhood and you don’t even know it! If you want to dive deeper into the findings and the research we did on millionaires and how they built their wealth, check out The National Study of Millionaires.

Ready to Join These Everyday Millionaires?

Yes, you can join these everyday millionaires. How? It’s all about controlling your money! It’s that simple—you tell it where to go. Make a written plan and get intentional about it! If you’re ready to build wealth, the first step is to talk to an investing professional and get serious about creating a plan. Don’t know if you can trust people to manage your money? We recommend investing professionals who share the financial values I teach through our SmartVestor program. Find an investing pro today!

Ramsey Solutions

About the author

Ramsey Solutions

Ramsey Solutions has been committed to helping people regain control of their money, build wealth, grow their leadership skills, and enhance their lives through personal development since 1992. Millions of people have used our financial advice through 22 books (including 12 national bestsellers) published by Ramsey Press, as well as two syndicated radio shows and 10 podcasts, which have over 17 million weekly listeners.

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