Remember that retirement planning starts long before you retire—the sooner, the better. Your “magic number,” the amount you need to retire comfortably, is highly personalized, but there are numerous rules of thumb that can give you an idea of how much to save.4
People used to say that you need around $1 million to retire comfortably. Other professionals use the 80% rule (i.e., you need enough to live on 80% of your income at retirement). If you made $100,000 per year, then you would need savings that could produce $80,000 per year for roughly 20 years, or a total of $1.6 million, including the income generated by your retirement assets. Others say most retirees aren’t saving anywhere near enough to meet those benchmarks and should adjust their lifestyle to live on what they have.