Lifetime Earnings Calculator: Answers "How Much Will I Earn in My Lifetime?"

Lifetime Earnings Calculator Sign

This calculator will create a chart showing the annual growth of your income or salary based on your anticipated annual cost of living (COL) increases.

It will then add up all of your forecasted annual incomes, giving you the total future income you will earn between now and when you retire.

The purpose of this future income calculator is to make you aware of just how much money you (and your spouse/mate, if applicable) will have the opportunity to manage between now and when you retire.

And the point this calculator will attempt to make is that if it turns out you end up broke at retirement age, it won't be because you didn't make enough money. It will be because you did not successfully manage the abundance of income (potential wealth) you worked so hard to earn.

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Lifetime Earnings Calculator

Calculate your future annual salary and your total lifetime earnings based on your expected annual raise and cost of living increases.

Special Instructions

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Selected Data Record:

A Data Record is a set of calculator entries that are stored in your web browser's Local Storage. If a Data Record is currently selected in the "Data" tab, this line will list the name you gave to that data record. If no data record is selected, or you have no entries stored for this calculator, the line will display "None".

DataData recordData recordSelected data record: None
Age:Current age:Your current age:Your current age:

Your current age:

Enter your current age.

Retire age:Retire age:Age you plan to retire at:Age you plan to retire at:

Age you plan to retire at:

Enter the age you expect to retire or stop earning an income.

Income:Annual income:Present annual income:Present annual income:

Present annual income:

You can either enter your gross annual income or your after-tax annual income, whichever you prefer. Enter without the dollar sign or any commas.

2nd income:2nd annual income:2nd annual income (optional):2nd annual income (optional):

2nd annual income (optional):

If you choose to include the income of a spouse or significant other, you can either enter their gross annual income or their after-tax annual income, whichever you prefer. Enter without the dollar sign or any commas.

COL raise:Annual COL raise:Annual COL and raises:Estimated annual raises & COL increases:

Estimated annual raises & cost of living increases:

Enter the average percentage by which you expect your income to grow each year between now and when you retire.

End income:At retire income:Annual income at retirement:Household annual income at retirement:

Estimated household annual income at retirement:

Based on your entered assumptions, this is how much your annual income will be at retirement age.

Tot earnings:Total earnings:Total lifetime earnings:Total lifetime earnings:

Total lifetime earnings:

Based on your entered assumptions, this is your total earnings between now and when you retire.

If you would like to save the current entries to the secure online database, tap or click on the Data tab, select "New Data Record", give the data record a name, then tap or click the Save button. To save changes to previously saved entries, simply tap the Save button. Please select and "Clear" any data records you no longer need.

Help and Tools


How to calculate lifetime earnings, and why the rich get richer.

How to Calculate Lifetime Earnings

Here are the steps to calculate your lifetime earnings.

Step #1: Estimate the total annual raise and cost of living increase percentage. If you expect to receive a total increase of 3% per year, convert the percentage to a decimal and add 1 to the result (3% = .03, + 1 = 1.03).

Step #2: For each year between now and retirement, multiply last year's income by the growth factor from Step #1. If your starting annual salary is $35,000, and you anticipate a 3% annual increase, here is how the first three calculations would look:

1$35,000.00 x 1.03 =$36,050.00
2$36,050.00 x 1.03 =$37,131.50
3$37,131.50 x 1.03 =$38,245.45

Step #3: Once you have completed the calculation for each year between now and retirement, total your annual income predictions (total of column #3 above). The result will be your forecasted lifetime earnings.

Why Do the Rich Get Richer?

You could come up with a multitude of reasons that attempt to explain why the rich get richer. But in my opinion, there's only one reason.

The rich get richer because the poor and middle class continue to hand all of their potential wealth over to the rich. After all, the rich are not printing their own money. Where else would it be coming from?

I honestly believe that if you put every dollar of everyone's net worth into one account, and then redistributed that amount equally between every citizen of the country, it would only be a matter of a few years before the bulk of the money would end up right back in the hands of the rich.

Why is that?

It's because you and I have been taught since birth that the key to happiness is to buy the things that we've been led to believe will make us happier -- even if it means renting (borrowing) the money to buy them.

Who's been doing the teaching?

That's right, the rich.

And how are they doing the teaching?

Easy. They have ivory towers teaming with the best marketing minds money can buy, who in turn enlist the services of highly paid actors and actresses who are experts at making us believe they are actually experiencing the benefits being advertised.

And what happens when you add the best lobbyists money can buy? It's what we up North refer to as "hook, line, and sinker."

Turning the Tables

So how can we turn the tables on the rich? That's easy. We have to stop playing the "fool" in "a fool and his money are soon parted."

And the key to that is to become financially savvy enough to instantly recognize when someone is feeding us a line of bull.

Adjust Calculator Width:

Move the slider to left and right to adjust the calculator width. Note that the Help and Tools panel will be hidden when the calculator is too wide to fit both on the screen. Moving the slider to the left will bring the instructions and tools panel back into view.

Also note that some calculators will reformat to accommodate the screen size as you make the calculator wider or narrower. If the calculator is narrow, columns of entry rows will be converted to a vertical entry form, whereas a wider calculator will display columns of entry rows, and the entry fields will be smaller in size ... since they will not need to be "thumb friendly".

Show/Hide Popup Keypads:

Select Show or Hide to show or hide the popup keypad icons located next to numeric entry fields. These are generally only needed for mobile devices that don't have decimal points in their numeric keypads. So if you are on a desktop, you may find the calculator to be more user-friendly and less cluttered without them.

Stick/Unstick Tools:

Select Stick or Unstick to stick or unstick the help and tools panel. Selecting "Stick" will keep the panel in view while scrolling the calculator vertically. If you find that annoying, select "Unstick" to keep the panel in a stationary position.

If the tools panel becomes "Unstuck" on its own, try clicking "Unstick" and then "Stick" to re-stick the panel.