Recent studies suggest that the ultra-wealthy are coming into their money a lot younger these days. One survey found that the average age of U.S. millionaires with at least $25 million is now only 47, as opposed to 58 in 2014. Not only are those at or above the $25 million mark getting younger, but they’re also growing, as they now number around 172,000 households, up from just 84,000 in 2008. These super wealthy individuals also appear to be getting even wealthier than their older counterparts, as the average age of those with just $1 million still hovers around 62. So how exactly are those climbing into the 1% getting so wealthy so quickly? Well, economists point to a variety of reasons. Here we’ll take a look at a few of them and how you can take advantage of each to help boost your own climb up the economic ladder.
It may be no surprise that many of the newest members of America’s financial elite are also the offspring of incredibly wealthy families. A huge number of survey participants pointed to both inheritances and family connections as contributions to their financial success. This doesn’t necessarily mean that they all got a free ride, however, as wealth built over the course of generations doesn’t always guarantee longevity. Many of those who inherited money also pointed to hard work and starting their own businesses as prime wealth generators. This goes to show that the good fortune of being born into a wealthy family is not only the inheritance of money but also the opportunity to learn how to generate wealth firsthand. While there may not be much you can do about not being born into an illustrious family, there are plenty of ways to get some insider tips on what exactly the rich are being taught to do differently. Don’t take our word for it. Just head to Amazon and pick up a copy of Rich Dad, Poor Dad.
Other experts point to the rise in technology as one of the reasons it’s now far more possible to become wealthy than ever before. Whereas in the past, fortunes could take a lifetime to compound, the rise of the Internet as now made it possible to launch a business or start investing overnight. Apps such as Robinhood and Acorns allow young investors to begin playing the stocks or investing in EFTs almost instantly, without the need to ever consult a stockbroker. The rise of social media has also made it possible to market an online business to a global audience with little to no overhead costs on marketing or office space. Gone are the days when starting your own business meant taking out a huge loan and opening for the best. Now all you really need is a great idea, a lot of hard work, and a laptop.
Social networking also accounts for an often overlooked advantage that this generation has over those of the past. It’s no secret that networking has always been an intricate part of career growth and now it’s easier than ever. Not only do sites such as LinkedIn provide access to people across a huge variety of fields, but networking platforms like Facebook have also made it incredibly realistic to keep in touch with old classmates or co-workers.
Greater access to education
Okay, so college isn’t always cheap, but online access to knowledge has virtually exploded over the past few decades. If you want to boost your resume with a new set of skills, it’s no longer necessary to take out more student loans to do it. Head over to sites such as Open Culture, where you can gain free access to classes taught at schools like Stanford, Oxford, and Yale. If you don’t mind investing a bit extra, you can even register for a certificate program for less than $50 on an app called edX. There you’ll find classes on everything from technology to history from institutions like Harvard, Columbia, and a variety of other Universities.