How Chicago Savers Can End Up With One Million Dollars in Retirement Savings

Once upon a time, having a million dollars when you retired meant you were rich. Nowadays, it merely means you're financially secure - if you manage your money responsibly.

But while a million bucks doesn't stretch quite as far - or buy as much luxury - as it did in our parents' day, the good news is that reaching the million-dollar milestone is more within our grasp than ever before, according to Chicago bankruptcy attorneys. That is, if we stop losing money due to growing debt and start earning it through growing our savings.

You've probably heard it before, but it's true: the earlier you start saving, the more you'll save. Just look at the numbers from a recent U.S. News article. Let's say you start setting aside $5,500 annually at age 30 - i.e., 10 percent of a $55,000 income. If you can get a match of $1,000-plus on your 401k and earn 7 percent in average yearly returns, you'll see $1 million by your 65th birthday.

Now let's say you get a slower start and don't start socking away a percentage of your income until age 40. You've got some catch-up work to do. Now you'll need to save $14,000 a year to retire a millionaire - almost triple the savings you would have needed had you started a decade earlier.

That's not to say it can't be done. Instead of getting discouraged, remember that every little bit you save counts towards your ultimate goal - financial security, both now and in retirement. Can't save $5,000 a year? How about starting with $2,500? Find a number that works for you. As things change, you may be able to save more or less, but keep putting something in the pot. When saving money becomes a weekly or monthly ritual, it's harder to make excuses not to do it.

Looking for ways to free up some spare cash each month? Check out our tips for cutting everyday costs. And don't forget the fastest way to increase your income - lowering all that debt. If most of your paycheck is going to pay the bills, bankruptcy can be an affordable fix that could save you thousands over the years in interest alone. And right now at DebtStoppers, you can file for just $300. Want to know more? Consider a free personal debt analysis with a Chicago bankruptcy attorney.

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