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March 28, 2021

Do you care how much your neighbour is worth?

Do you know how much you’re worth? Do you know how that compares with your peers? Or do you even care?

Money Money used to be a taboo subject. Now there are stacks of web sites like NetworthIQ and Mint that allow the self absorbed to post their finances and compare them with others.

Most do it anonymously, though some post their names along with a detailed history of their spending to provide a bit of context.

But their major purpose is the same: To draw attention to their net worth (what they own minus what they owe), highlight any progress they’ve been making, and do a little reflective benchmarking.

Is your own financial “number” more useful to you when you have someone else’s to compare it with? I’m not sure. But everyone seems to know some clown who seems to earn about what they do but somehow spends a lot more. 

If you’d like to know how you measure up, here’s a common rubric many advisors use to remind prospects how far they’re falling behind their diligent-saver peers. 

Multiply your age by your gross annual income and then divide by ten. This, excluding any inherited wealth, is what your net worth should likely be.

So, a 28 year old making $38,000 a year, should have around $106,000 in the till.

If you want to make a quick comparison chart of what you’re worth compared to others in your age and income bracket, click here. The data is American but it will give you a general idea to work with.

For a more international perspective, click here.

Do you think comparing your net worth to others online is helpful or hurtful? If you've done it, where do you fit in?

By Gordon Powers, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

James HaversJames Havers

James is the senior editor of MSN Money living in Toronto. He has worked for the Nikkei Shimbun (Tokyo),,, Canadian Business and other publications. Havers turned to journalism after teaching overseas.

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...