How Long Does It Take to Become Rich?

How long does it take for the average rich person to become rich?

Ten years, 20 years?

How long does it take for the average rich person to become rich

How about 32 years.

That’s how long it took the average self-made millionaire, according to my data.

In my Rich Habits Study, 76% of those who were wealthy were self-made millionaires.

They came from non-wealthy households: 31% of these millionaires came from poor households, while 45% came from middle-class households.

What’s more compelling about the data I gathered is the age in which these self-made millionaires actually struck it rich.

Here’s the breakdown:

  • 1% (2 out of 233) became wealthy before the age of 40
  • 3% (6 out of 233) became wealthy between age 40 and 45
  • 16% (38 out of 233) became wealthy between age 46 and 50
  • 28% (66 out of 233) became wealthy between age 51 and 55
  • 31% (73 out of 233) became wealthy between age 56 and 60
  • 21% (48 out of 233) became wealthy after the age of 60

The romanticized notion of getting rich quick always finds an eager audienceWe are stimulated by stories about the young and the wealthy.

The immediate success of youthful billionaires like Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg or Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin play to our get-rich-quick desires.

We obsess over stories about lottery winners.

And the lottery organizations know it.

California’s lottery catchphrase is Imagine What a Buck Could Do.

New York’s lottery catchphrase is Dollar and a Dream.

Australia’s got a dandy: Live a Lotto Life.

There is even a popular reality TV show called Lottery Changed My Life about how the lives of lottery winners were changed. 


Immediate gratification, especially when it comes to wealth accumulation, is the rallying cry of many in the modern world these days.

Unfortunately, getting rich quickly is a rare phenomenon.

It’s clear from the above data that accumulating wealth takes a very long time.

It just doesn’t happen overnight.

In fact, 80% of the self-made millionaire in the Rich Habits Study did not become wealthy until after age 50.

Furthermore, 27% of these self-made millionaires tried and failed at least once in business.

The path to riches is a long, lonely one, paved with many potholes and numerous dead ends.

Those few who do make it are seasoned veterans in the world of entrepreneurs, deserving of their own, hard-earned status: Self-Made Millionaire.



Hear Michael & a select panel of guest experts discuss property investment, success & money related topics. Subscribe now, whether you're on an Apple or Android handset.



Join Michael Yardney's inner circle of daily subscribers and get into the head of Australia's best property investment advisor and a wide team of leading property researchers and commentators.

Avatar for Property Update


Tom is a CPA, CFP and heads one of the top financial firms in New Jersey. For 5 years, Tom observed and documented the daily activities of wealthy people and people living in poverty and his research he identified over 200 daily activities that separated the “haves” from the “have nots” which culminated in his #1 bestselling book, Rich Habits – The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals. Visit the website:

'How Long Does It Take to Become Rich?' have 3 comments

  1. Avatar for Property Update

    May 9, 2015 @ 3:13 pm declan

    In your study what defines wealthy.


  2. Avatar for Property Update

    December 19, 2016 @ 10:32 am Chris

    Yes good point what is considered wealthy today ?


    • Avatar for Property Update

      December 19, 2016 @ 1:16 pm Michael Yardney

      I’ve often said that any problem money can solve isn’t really a problem. While this means money will make your life easier to a certain degree, if you let money own you it will make you miserable.

      I became a lot happier about 25 years ago when I realised that money isn’t true wealth. (And I learned it the hard way!)

      True wealth is what you are left with when they take all your money and properties away – your health, your family and friends, your knowledge and mindset, your spirituality and your ability to contribute to society.


Would you like to share your thoughts?

Your email address will not be published.



Michael's Daily Insights

Join Michael Yardney's inner circle of daily subscribers.

NOTE: this daily service is a different subscription to our weekly newsletter so...