Average Net Worth Of Millennials By Age


Net Worth of Millennials

Let’s not sugar coat it – we’re all a bit voyeuristic when it comes to other people’s money. How much do you think they make? How much do you think they have? How did they afford that car? Can you believe that so and so is buying a house?

So let’s focus on one metric – net worth. And let’s talk about millennials – which is likely you, and is me too.


Why millennials? Well, the media seems to portray millennials as broke, unable to pay their student loans, and never able to buy a house. Millennials are supposedly delaying marriage and all sorts of stuff because they are poor and burdened by debt.

I don’t think that’s the case. With anything financially related, there is never an easy answer. But I think there are just as many millennials crushing it financially. I know first hand that some millennials are already millionaires. And the most recent Federal Reserve data shows older millennial net worth is growing at a massive rate.

That makes sense! The oldest millennials are now 42!


Maybe the trouble is how we define millennials? Maybe there’s a bigger picture here we need to consider. Maybe we just need to ignore the mainstream media when it comes to wealth. Let’s break it down and then look at the average net worth for millennials.

To keep it simple, the average millennial net worth is $549,600. But whoa, that’s a bonkers figure. And it’s skewed because of outliers. A better gauge is median (i.e. the middle figure): the median net worth of millennials is $135,600. That’s still a massive improvement from when we first started tracking this.

It’s also important to remember that number is skewed given the age ranges, but even the Federal Reserve is acknowledging a 28% change from just 3 years ago. See our charts below.


Regardless of the average, I strongly urge you to think about the high achiever net worth – trust me, I know plenty of millennials who are way above average and it’s possible.

Editor’s Note: This article was originally written in 2016, and there was no data available to figure out millennial net worth. As millennials have aged and even the youngest being in the workforce for a good amount of time, their net worth has been growing, and the data has been increasing. A large amount of our analysis comes from the most recent Federal Reserve Survey on Consumer Finances, which was published in October 2023. This article has been updated to reflect the latest data on millennial net worth.

Who Are Millennials?

Millennials are technically anyone born between 1981 and 1996. Basically, these people are roughly 27 to 42 today. That’s roughly 81 million Americans. We more fully break down the millennial age range here.

What makes them unique as a generation? Well, millennials likely were little kids in a time before computers and cell phones were everywhere. They likely remember getting their first computer and cell phone, and it was a big deal. The likely encountered technology for the first time at school – playing Oregon Trail on a green computer screen. And even today, 64% of millennials are receiving financial support from their parents.

When it comes to money, millennials do have some of the highest student loan debt rates of any generation in history. The average millennial has $30,000 in student loans. See this article on the average student loan debt by graduate class/year.

Depending on when the millennial graduated college, they could have entered a terrible or awesome job market. Remember, some millennials graduated from college before the financial crisis of 2007, some during it, and some after it. When you graduated from college played a huge role in your earnings right out of school.

Millennials are also all dealing with life events at different times as well – from buying a house to getting married, some did it before the recession and some after. As a result, even some older millennials can still be behind. Plus, older millennials who may have started the recovery just got hit with a pandemic, which has resulted in the largest number of unemployed Americans since the Great Depression.

So, it’s really a mixed bag when it comes to millennials. They’re hard to define financially.

But one thing’s for sure – they’re not dumb when it comes to their money. They are combining technology and money like never before (mobile banking, financial apps, etc), and they want their money to work for them. However, the traditional banking and finance sector hasn’t caught up, and millennials really don’t like engaging with traditional brick and mortar finance. As such, there is a divide here.

When looking at net worth for millennials, these are all factors to consider.

Factors To Consider About Millennial Net Worth

When I think of the main factors that fall into millennial net worth, here’s what we need to consider.

First, we need to consider when millennials graduated. If millennials are roughly 27 to 42 today, it means the oldest millennials graduated before the last financial crisis, and the youngest before the Covid pandemic. But many in the middle saw the Great Recession in full-force.

Second, we need to look at the average salaries of graduates by year. NACE has a great survey that they conduct to look at the average salary of college graduates each year. 

Here’s how that looks by your current age today – if you are 42 today, your starting salary after graduation was roughly $40,818 (tell us in the comments if we’re close to what your first salary was after you graduated college):

Third, we need to discuss student loans. Student loans are a huge factor in millennial net worth, so we want to consider the average amount of student loan debt millennials had when the graduated (data here).

Just look at the chart below – just within the “millennial generation”, student loan debt has doubled, on average. 

We made some assumptions about age and college class year. Remember, you could be slightly older or younger for your age. Basically, if you’re 42 today, you graduated with roughly $18,271 in student loan debt on average.

Average Student Loan Debt

Finally, we do have to make some assumptions about saving. Remember, net worth is all about assets minus debt. But income plays a huge role and how much income is saved and how much debt is paid off really makes a difference. For the “average” millennial, I’m going to look at average savings rates for the calculation. For the above average millennial, we’re going to factor in IRA and 401k savings, as well as home equity.

Here are the savings rates going back to 2003, the first full year after many millennials graduated college.

Average Annual Savings Rate

The Net Worth of Millennials By Age

As we compare the net worth of millennials by age, I want to look at average and stretch goals. I think it’s important to always consider the average, but I also want to leave you with a stretch goal to get yourself in the top 1%.

Remember, net worth is assets minus liabilities. As we discussed earlier, the main assets we’re focusing on is savings, based on income. The main liability is student loan debt.

Also, you have to remember that we’ve seen exceptional growth over the last few years due to a growing economy and bull market. These have helped compound growth at faster levels than can likely be expected in the future.

Finally, I want to re-emphasize that these are just my estimates. The Federal Reserve data lumps everyone under 35 into one bucket, so while we have some starting points, things can always skew one way or another.

With that in mind, here’s the Federal Reserve Data for under 35, and 35 to 44.

Under 35:

  • Median Net Worth: $39,000
  • Average Net Worth: $183,500

35 to 44:

  • Median Net Worth: $135,600
  • Average Net Worth: $549,600

However, I think it’s a great starting point for discussion, so let’s jump into it. Remember, we’re pulling and estimating based on some very sparse data points, as well as negative net worth for younger cohorts. This is an estimate! But based on years of experience, we think it’s a fairly accurate estimate. 

Average Millennial Net Worth By Age

It’s important to note, if you’re comparing this to past charts, the Federal reserve data has shown significant growth in the older cohorts (42%). Our data aligns with this, as these individuals have likely been working and seeing significant investment gains over the last few years.

For reference, the median of millennial net worth is $135,600. The true geometric average of millennial net worth is actually $549,600 – but that number is heavily skewed by outliers like Mark Zuckerberg.

So, what that means is, if you want to be “better” than average, the 50% mark is $135,600 overall. Here you can see my best estimate of the 50% mark by age. So if you’re younger, you need less. And if you’re older, you need more.

Based on our data about Gen Z Net Worth, the inflection point from negative net worth to positive net worth happens between 26 and 27.

Notes: This assumes that students don’t work or work marginally during school, maintain an average amount of student loan debt, and get average employment after graduation. The older age groups have also enjoyed compounding on their savings over a longer period of time. It’s why you see the net worth jump a lot for the older millennials that have benefited from a bull market economy.

High Achiever Millennial Net Worth By Age

Now that you’ve seen what average is, what does it take to be above average? Well, anything better than the chart above is above-average. But I want to give you a stretch goal. I call this the high achiever millennial net worth by age.

How do you get here? A few key areas:

What are some of your thoughts on this? Do you think a 27 year old can have $50,315 saved up? I think it’s definitely possible – especially the high achievers that started working at 16 (or earlier) and saved a bunch. These individuals likely didn’t have student loan debt, and started their first job earning 25% more than average.

I think that these high achiever net worth amounts are very do-able. They are a stretch, but not unheard of. And these amounts will clearly make you above average.

Notes: There’s a huge jump around the 30 year old range, and that’s all due to the Great Recession. The compounding just didn’t kick in and there wasn’t a big nest egg to start going into it. However, now that nest egg is seeing solid growth years.

Millennial Net Worth FAQ

Here are some common questions when it comes to millennial net worth.

What is the average net worth of millennials?

The average net worth of millennials is $549,600. However, this varies quite a bit across the millennial age range. The median net worth of millennials is $135,600.

What is the millennial age range?

Millennials were born between 1981 and 1996, making them roughly 27 to 42 today.

What is the average millennial starting salary?

Millennial starting salaries vary quite a bit by graduation year. Starting salaries have ranged from $40,818 to $52,569.

What is the average millennial student loan debt?

Millennials have graduated with anywhere $18,217 to $29,812 in student loan debt on average, depending on the year they graduated.

Are millennials doing well?

There is a big divergence in millennial success. Many millennials are doing extremely well, but others are struggling. There are plenty of millionaire millennials, but there are also many millennials in poverty.

How To Boost Your Net Worth

Now that you know the average and above average net worth, how do you get there? It’s time to start looking at ways to boost your net worth. 

As I mentioned above, it’s essential to track your net worth. I’m a fan of Empower, because it’s free, has great tools, and it’s online. Check out Empower here.

The great thing is that you’re still young and you have a ton of time on your side. Time is the biggest ally you have in building wealth. But if you want to grow it (and fast), here are two more key areas to focus on.

Boosting Your Income – As mentioned earlier, income is one of the key drivers in building assets and eliminating debt. The more income you have, the easier it is to grow your net worth. I want to challenge you to earn at least an extra $100 per month. We have a great list of ideas to get started. I’m a firm believer that everyone can earn more if they try.

Eliminating Your Debt – One of the biggest struggles millennials have is overcoming a negative net worth and making it positive. Eliminating that student loan debt is key. Leverage your additional income but also look at student loan repayment strategies to help lower that debt.


The fact is not everyone is average or above average when it comes to net worth. But knowing where you stand is incredibly important. It can validate your current financial plan, or it could provide motivation for you to make financial changes in your life.

Don’t be discouraged if you’re not hitting the bar yet. Follow the strategies we discussed and start working towards building real wealth.

What are your thoughts? Are you a millennials that’s above average or below? What do you think is the driver of that?

More Article From The College Investor:

Gen Z Age Range: Money, Work, And Whether Stereotypes Are True
15 Ways To Save An Extra $500 Per Month

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