Most of us rely on financial instruments to keep our savings safe, but it can be hard to know if you’re saving enough. Evaluating the average savings account balance across the country is a good start. Using data from the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances, we’ve broken down the median and the average by age, income and gender, so you can see how you fare compared to Americans in recent history.
Note: In this article, mean or average indicates the total amount of savings divided by the number of savers, while median represents the middle-ground savings amount.
Median and Average Savings Account Balance in the U.S.
Of the Americans who have savings accounts, the median savings account balance is $5,200. The average, or mean balance is $33,766.49. The households with high incomes seriously skew the numbers when you calculate the mean. To get a better idea of where you stand, you can compare the median savings account balance filtered by demographic.
Average Savings Account Balance by Age
Unsurprisingly, Americans add more to their savings account as they age. Everyone should aspire to live in such a way that your nest egg grows with time, but that means starting as soon as you’re able.
The median savings account balance for those under 35 years old was $1,580. During the years between 35 and 44, balances grow significantly. The median for 35-year-olds to 44-year-olds is $5,000. By the time we reach 75 and above the median is $11,000.
Check out the full breakdown of median savings account balance by age:
- Under 35: $1,580
- 35-44: $5,000
- 45-54: $6,500
- 55-64: $8,500
- 65-74: $10,000
- 75+: $11,000
Average Savings Account Balance by Income
Also unsurprisingly, Americans who make more money are able to save more money. Income is the factor that makes the biggest difference in averages savings amount. Low-income earners are also the least likely to have a savings account. Those that make less than $25,000 a year only keep $500 in savings, while those raking in more than $160,000 have a median of $50,000 in savings.
Even though it can be much more difficult when you aren’t bringing home a fortune from your employer, you should base your savings on a percentage of income. Many people rely on the 50/30/20 budgeting rule, which can be a great way to get started. This will ensure you’re putting at least 20% of your take-home pay toward debt repayment and savings.
Check out the full breakdown of median savings account balance by income:
- Under $25,000: $500
- $25,000-44,999: $1,500
- $45,000-69,999: $2,200
- $70,000-114,999: $5,400
- $115,000-159,999: $10,000
- $160.000+: $50,000
Average Savings Account Balance by Gender
Women earn an average of 78 cents for every dollar that a male earns. Certain parts of the country are helping pave the way for a shrinking gender payment gap, but it still persists. As we saw how large a difference income can make on savings, it only makes sense that women tend to have less money in their savings accounts. Households led by females are also less likely to have a savings account at all.
Check out the full breakdown of median savings account balance by gender:
- Male: $7,000
- Female: $2,000
Average Savings Account Balance by Race
The pay gap also exists among different races in America, with white Americans earning more than their black and Hispanic counterparts. Wealth and savings follow suit.
Take a look at the full breakdown of median savings account balance by race:
- White Non-Hispanic: $7,140
- Black: $1,000
- Hispanic: $1,500
Despite economic ups and downs, Americans have been depositing more into their savings account every year on average since 1959, when the Federal Reserve started collecting this data. The total amount of American savings account deposits has increased since 1959, the earliest date for which the Federal Reserve has data. The median balance, however, has not always followed suit, highlighting the differences in savings discipline across households.
If you need help getting your savings on track, consider working with a financial advisor. A financial advisor can help you take control of your budget and create a financial plan. A matching tool like SmartAdvisor can help you find an advisor to work with to meet your needs. First you’ll answer a series of questions about your situation and your goals. Then the program narrows down thousands of advisors to up to three who meet your needs and are in your area. You can then read their profiles to learn more about them, interview them on the phone or in person and choose who to work with in the future. This allows you to find a good fit while doing much of the hard work for you.
Tips for Saving More
- To bump up your savings, take a hard look at your budget. Find any places you can cut costs and redirect those funds to your savings. You can also shop smarter, looking for coupons and finding deals where you can.
- But, you don’t want all your eggs in one basket either. If your savings account is creeping much higher than the average, you may consider some other places to park your money that will yield a greater return. This may include a better savings account, certificates of deposit (CDs), money market accounts or bonds.
Phsoto credit: ©iStock.com/AfricaImages, ©iStock.com/Rawpixel, ©iStock.com/tibor13