How to Become a Millionaire in Your 30s
10 minutes reading time (1978 words)

How to Become a Millionaire in Your 30s

For most people, the idea of becoming rich is mostly a fantasy. Many of us imagine what it would be like to have millions of dollars, but few of us actually get there. However, if you want to know how to become a millionaire in your 30s, the answer will probably surprise you. It doesn’t take an inheritance or some kind of get-rich-quick scheme. how to become a millionaire in your 30s

In this article, we’ll outline the best methods you can start using right now to become a millionaire before you reach 40. We’re not saying that the road to wealth is easy, but once you have the right plan in place, it is attainable. 

Step One: Assess Your Current Situation

First things first, if you’re already in your mid-30’s, chances are that you won’t become a millionaire before turning 40. However, if you’re in your mid 20’s, then you have that potential. Obviously, the sooner you start on the path toward financial independence, the easier it will be to amass the money you want. 

When assessing your situation, these are the core elements to pay attention to:


You can become a millionaire with outstanding debt. It’s really the kind of debt you have that will impact your life. For example, a mortgage isn’t too bad because you’re building equity in your property. However, credit card debt can be a killer since you have to make monthly payments and you’re paying a high interest rate.


How much are you making from your primary job? Do you have secondary income from another source? If so, what’s that bringing in each month? As we’ll get into later, building multiple revenue streams is going to help you reach your goal that much faster. 

Retirement Accounts

If you don’t have a 401k set up by now, you need to get started ASAP. If your job doesn’t offer one, then perhaps now is the time to look for a position with better benefits? Even if you don’t have access to a 401k, you can put money away in other accounts like an IRA.


Something that most people don’t realize is that being a millionaire doesn’t necessarily mean you have $1 million in the bank. Your net worth can be calculated from a variety of sources, including retirement accounts and any property you own. You may only have a few thousand dollars in your checking account, but still be worth a million dollars on paper. 

Overall, when assessing your situation, you not only want to see where you’re at, but where you’re heading. If you don’t own any property right now, what are your plans for buying some in the future? Realistically, you want to create a breakdown of your current assets as well as a plan for what you want to achieve in the next 5 to 10 years. 

Step Two: Focus on Saving

One of the biggest reasons why people don’t have money is that they spend it. We live in a culture of consumerism, which means that it’s super easy to buy things we don’t need. If you really want to become a millionaire, you need to change your habits. 

In most cases, the richest people in the world are not the ones with flashy wardrobes and high-tech gadgets. Having more money in the bank is going to be better than having the latest product. 

When it comes to saving, one of the best ways to ensure you follow your plan is to automate it. Every time you get paid, funnel a chunk of it into a savings or retirement account. The latter option is often better because you can’t touch it, meaning that it won’t be tempting to do so. 

If necessary, come up with a budget to see how much you can realistically afford and start there. However, if you want to become a millionaire in your 30’s you better be saving just about as much as you possibly can. Save first, spend later.

The best thing about this strategy is that once the money is saved, you don’t have to worry about your spending habits. While you may need to adjust yourself at first, you’ll start to get used to having less disposable cash. 

After a while, it will become second nature, and you won’t miss the money. Best of all, it’s growing interest in a retirement account or savings account.

Overall, when figuring out how to become a millionaire in your 30s, becoming frugal is going to a must for most people. Come up with new ways to save money here and there and see how quickly it adds up. While you don’t have to become a penny-pinching miser, it’s always a good idea to think twice before spending anything. 

Step Three: Invest in Yourself

Another critical element to becoming a millionaire in your 30s is that you need to increase your income. If you’re working a minimum-wage job right now, you will never reach your goal. Now is the time to invest in yourself. Here are a few ways to do that. 

Learn a Skilled Trade

Jobs like construction workers or auto mechanics can make a lot more than you think. Most people assume that the best jobs require a formal four-year education. However, if you have a passion for a particular trade, you can leverage that into a higher-paying career. 

Go Back to School

Getting a degree in a different field is a smart investment. Before signing up for classes, however, you want to figure out what will have the most impact on your income level. For example, a masters in communications might not pan out as well as getting an MBA. 

You might be thinking, “won’t I just accrue a bunch of student loan debt?” Yes, that is most likely the case, but if you can double or triple your income, the debt is worth it. Also, unlike credit cards, you can lock in a low interest rate and pay off the balance over the long term. 

Start a Business

What better way to invest in yourself than becoming your own boss? You may think that starting a business requires capital, but there are plenty of options out there that don’t need a ton of money. Here are a few examples:

  • Affiliate Marketing - build a website and grow your following. Then post affiliate links and make money from each sale
  • Blogging - it’s never been easier to start a blog. If you can focus on a particular niche (ideally one you’re passionate about), you can build an audience and make money with ads. 
  • Dropshipping - online shopping is big business these days, and you don’t need vast warehouses filled with inventory. Set up a digital storefront and let the manufacturers do the shipping for you. 
  • Vlogging - making money from video sites like YouTube is also pretty easy. You do have to invest in camera and editing equipment, but even moderately popular accounts can make thousands per month. 

One thing to keep in mind when starting a business is that it doesn’t have to take over your life. In many cases, building a consistent revenue stream should be the goal, meaning that you can work full-time and earn a passive income with your business. 

Even if you’re just making a few hundred per month, that’s better than nothing. Also, you can put all of that money into investment or retirement accounts where it can grow even further. 

Step Four: Invest Your Money Smarter

Let’s face it, putting your money in a savings account isn’t going to turn you into a millionaire in your 30’s. Instead, you want your money to work as hard as it can for you. Why add more hours to your schedule when you can have your finances compounding and growing automatically? 

One mistake that people make is that they believe they need a lot of cash to invest. However, if you have a few hundred dollars, you can start there and work your way up. You don’t need a massive stake in something to earn money off of it. Begin wherever you can and build it up incrementally. 

Here are a few investment options that can help you grow your money. 

Dividend Stocks

Ideally, you will want to work with a financial advisor to find relatively low-risk stocks. Dividend stocks pay you regularly (usually quarterly), based on the performance of the stock itself. Reinvest the dividend so that it grows even faster. 

Peer-to-Peer Lending

With this investment opportunity, you will have to have a few thousand dollars to get started, but it’s an excellent way to get a decent return without a lot of risk. Peer-to-peer lending companies offer alternative financing for borrowers. When those people pay the loan back with interest, you pocket the extra funds. 

Real Estate

When most people think of real estate investing, they imagine something like buying and flipping properties. While that is certainly an option for you, it’s not necessary to work in the real estate industry to make money from it. Instead, you can put your cash into a crowdsourced venture, or you can work with a financial advisor to find alternative opportunities. 

Also, you can leverage your retirement accounts to invest in real estate loans. Borrow against your 401k and invest in a real estate deal. When you pay the loan back with interest, that extra money stays in the account. Essentially, you’re paying yourself extra, which will continue to grow for your retirement. 

Another option is to buy a rental property and earn passive income from tenants. Even better, you can buy a multi-family home and live on the premises. Doing it this way offers better interest rates and borrowing amounts, allowing you greater flexibility in your options. 

Yes, you will have to be a full-time landlord. However, if you have multiple tenants paying rent, you can pay off your mortgage even faster!

Step Five: Aim High

Due to inflation, one million isn’t worth what it used to be. All too often, it’s easy to focus on a single number and then rest on your laurels once you reach it. However, considering that inflation will continue to rise in the coming years and decades, your million will be worth even less by the time you retire. 

Thankfully, having money means that it’s easier to get more of it. You can leverage your earnings and savings to invest in more opportunities, which can lead to higher profits. 

Overall, you want to increase your monthly income as much as possible. Ideally, you will be able to pay off expenses and bills with passive income, meaning that your paycheck can go towards savings and living the life you want. 

Step Six: Delay Gratification

Being rich and acting rich are two different things. As we mentioned before, the wealthiest people aren’t necessarily the ones driving the suped-up sports car or wearing designer clothing. 

While it’s tempting to upgrade your lifestyle once you reach millionaire status, that mentality is an excellent way to lose most of that money. Instead, hold off on the flashier elements of being rich until you have more than enough cash to do so. 

That being said, sacrificing your social life doesn’t have to be part of the experience, either. While you don’t want to be hitting the club every weekend, you should be able to splurge every so often. 

Take a family vacation once a year, go out to a fancy restaurant on your anniversary - revel in these moments occasionally. Doing so will help motivate you to continue on the path towards financial freedom.

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This is a post from Clint Haynes, a Certified Financial Planner® and Financial Advisor in Kansas City, Missouri. He is also the founder and owner of NextGen Wealth. You can learn more about Clint at the website NextGen Wealth.


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About the Author

Aurtho Clint Haynes, CFPThis article was written by Clint Haynes, CFP®. Clint is a Certified Financial Planner® and Founder of NextGen Wealth. You can learn more about Clint by reading his full bio here.

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