$1 Million By the Time I’m Ready to Retire?

January 21, 2012 at 9:25 PM 4 comments

My job officially ended with my former company in November of last year. In early December I received my last paycheck and on the last day of 2011 I received my severance payout. As each of these events transpire I feel the book officially closing on my previous employment.

I believe yesterday marked the final chapter as I withdrew the money in my retirement plan in preparation for a 401(k) rollover. After twelve years of saving my final tally borders $275,000.

Better market conditions may have resulted in a larger sum, but I still think that’s a pretty decent chunk of change. It proves two things to me. First, that I didn’t miss the money that was automatically deposited into my 401(k) each month and second that saving small amounts of money month after month really adds up.

Seeing this number in black and white makes me a little more confident about my (possible) decision to stay home for a couple of years. I won’t add more money, (or at least not a significant amount), to my retirement accounts while I’m out of work, but the money that is already in my account can certainly grow. I also have money in a Roth IRA that I opened the year after I graduated from college.

In fact, based on a few quick calculations at a 4% rate of return my investments could be worth as much as $1 million by the time I’m ready to retire at age 60. That’s $1 million without saving another dime. Of course, I don’t plan to be out of the workforce forever, so I would certainly start saving again at some point in the not so distant future.

I haven’t made any final decisions about returning to work, but reviewing the numbers makes me feel much more confident about the possibility of staying home. One of my fears is that today’s decisions will impact tomorrow’s goals. Looking at these numbers I feel more confident that one decision will not dramatically impact another.

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4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Jolie  |  January 21, 2012 at 9:38 PM

    That is an amazing sum to be able to roll over to a 401K. You have done a fantastic job ­čÖé

    You are such an inspiration.

  • 2. WorkingMom  |  January 22, 2012 at 1:27 AM

    In light of the last three years and its effects on the market, you have done a phenomenal job protecting your future! Give yourself a big pat on the back.

  • 3. evy  |  January 22, 2012 at 4:04 AM

    Yes, very good job. I just checked my 401K acct and its at $272,000 after 20 years of investing. So, you've done better than me.

  • 4. Mariza  |  January 24, 2012 at 3:21 AM

    Hi Frugal Girl,

    I just found your blog and I'm so impressed and I congratulate you! You've done so great!


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