GOBankingRates

45 Jobs That Can Make You a Millionaire Before Retirement

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Asia-Pacific Images Studio / iStock.com

Many Americans harbor a dream of becoming a millionaire, but precious few manage to reach that goal in their lifetime. After all, the multitude of costs that come with living and raising a family make saving enough income to hit that second comma on your net worth a challenging feat. You need the sort of job that’s going to pay well in excess of what it takes to cover your bills.

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So which jobs can you expect to do that? To answer the question, GOBankingRates used data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine the average salaries of many common jobs. Then, it deducted the cost of federal taxes and the average cost of living from that figure to show how much income you would have left over after covering the basics. Using that figure, the study then calculates how long it will take you to save up that $1 million while making an average salary in the profession. It doesn’t factor in the cost of your education — obviously a major expenditure for many of these occupations, based on their requirements — or how you can grow your savings through investment, but it should still give you a clear sense of how fast someone can stash away money in each job.

So, who can expect to reach that million-dollar goal the fastest? Here’s a look at which jobs will get you there.

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45. Law Teachers, Postsecondary

  • Annual salary: $130,820
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $98,688
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $37,354
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 26 years 9 months 1 days

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44. Health Specialties Teachers, Postsecondary

  • Annual salary: $133,310
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $100,390
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $39,056
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 25 years 7 months 1 day
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43. Purchasing Managers

  • Annual salary: $134,590
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $101,265
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $39,931
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 25 years 0 months 8 days
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42. Computer Hardware Engineers

  • Annual salary: $136,230
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $102,385
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $41,051
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 24 years 4 months 4 days
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41. Human Resources Managers

  • Annual salary: $136,590
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $102,632
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $41,298
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 24 years 2 months 12 days
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40. Public Relations Managers

  • Annual salary: $138,000
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $103,595
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $42,261
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 23 years 7 months 23 days

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39. Astronomers

  • Annual salary: $139,410
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $104,559
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $43,225
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 23 years 1 month 12 days
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38. Compensation and Benefits Managers

  • Annual salary: $139,470
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $104,601
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $43,267
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 23 years 1 month 3 days
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37. Sales Managers

  • Annual salary: $142,390
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $106,596
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $45,262
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 22 years 0 months 28 days
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36. Judges, Magistrate Judges, and Magistrates

  • Annual salary: $142,520
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $106,653
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $45,319
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 22 years 0 months 18 days
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35. Computer and Information Research Scientists

  • Annual salary: $142,650
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $106,773
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $45,439
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 21 years 11 months 27 days
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34. Advertising and Promotions Managers

  • Annual salary: $142,860
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $106,917
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $45,583
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 21 years 11 months 2 days

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33. Prosthodontists

  • Annual salary: $143,730
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $107,512
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $46,178
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 21 years 7 months 21 days
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32. Petroleum Engineers

  • Annual salary: $145,720
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $108,872
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $47,538
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 21 years 0 months 7 days
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31. Lawyers

  • Annual salary: $148,030
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $110,515
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $49,181
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 20 years 3 months 25 days
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30. Physicists

  • Annual salary: $151,580
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $113,161
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $51,827
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 19 years 3 months 12 days
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29. Marketing Managers

  • Annual salary: $153,440
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $114,548
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $53,214
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 18 years 9 months 11 days
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28. Financial Managers

  • Annual salary: $153,460
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $114,563
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $53,229
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 18 years 9 months 9 days
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27. Natural Sciences Managers

  • Annual salary: $156,110
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $116,538
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $55,204
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 18 years 1 month 5 days

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26. Podiatrists

  • Annual salary: $158,380
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $118,230
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $56,896
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 17 years 6 months 24 days
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25. Architectural and Engineering Managers

  • Annual salary: $158,970
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $118,671
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $57,337
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 17 years 5 months 4 days
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24. Computer and Information Systems Managers

  • Annual salary: $162,930
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $121,623
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $60,289
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 16 years 6 months 28 days
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23. Dentists, General

  • Annual salary: $167,160
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $124,776
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $63,442
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 15 years 9 months 1 day
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22. Dentists, All Other Specialists

  • Annual salary: $179,400
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $133,901
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $72,567
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 13 years 9 months 7 days
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21. Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers

  • Annual salary: $198,190
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $146,694
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $85,360
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 11 years 8 months 15 days

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20. Pediatricians, General

  • Annual salary: $198,420
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $146,847
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $85,513
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 11 years 8 months 7 days
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19. Nurse Anesthetists

  • Annual salary: $202,470
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $149,556
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $88,222
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 11 years 3 months 29 days
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18. Physicians, All Other

  • Annual salary: $231,500
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $168,957
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $107,623
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 9 years 3 months 13 days
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17. Family Medicine Physicians

  • Annual salary: $235,930
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $171,797
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $110,463
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 9 years 0 months 16 days
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16. General Internal Medicine Physicians

  • Annual salary: $242,190
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $175,809
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $114,475
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 8 years 8 months 22 days
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15. Psychiatrists

  • Annual salary: $249,760
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $180,661
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $119,327
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 8 years 4 months 15 days

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14. Physicians, Pathologists

  • Annual salary: $267,180
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $191,827
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $130,493
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 7 years 7 months 28 days
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13. Orthodontists

  • Annual salary: $267,280
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $191,891
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $130,557
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 7 years 7 months 26 days
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12. Neurologists

  • Annual salary: $267,660
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $192,135
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $130,801
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 7 years 7 months 21 days
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11. Ophthalmologists, Except Pediatric

  • Annual salary: $270,090
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $193,693
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $132,359
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 7 years 6 months 19 days
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10. Pediatric Surgeons

  • Annual salary: $290,310
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $206,654
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $145,320
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 6 years 10 months 15 days
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9. Obstetricians and Gynecologists

  • Annual salary: $296,210
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $210,436
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $149,102
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 6 years 8 months 12 days
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8. Surgeons, All Other

  • Annual salary: $297,800
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $211,455
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $150,121
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 6 years 7 months 27 days
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7. Radiologists

  • Annual salary: $301,720
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $213,968
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $152,634
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 6 years 6 months 18 days
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6. Dermatologists

  • Annual salary: $302,740
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $214,621
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $153,287
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 6 years 6 months 8 days
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5. Orthopedic Surgeons, Except Pediatric

  • Annual salary: $306,220
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $216,852
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $155,518
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 6 years 5 months 3 days
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4. Emergency Medicine Physicians

  • Annual salary: $310,640
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $219,685
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $158,351
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 6 years 3 months 23 days
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3. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons

  • Annual salary: $311,460
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $220,211
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $158,877
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 6 years 3 months 15 days
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2. Anesthesiologists

  • Annual salary: $331,190
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $232,858
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $171,524
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 5 years 9 months 27 days
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1. Cardiologists

  • Annual salary: $353,970
  • Annual salary after federal taxes: $247,460
  • Annual income after average expenditures: $186,126
  • How long it takes to earn a million dollars: 5 years 4 months 14 days

Jordan Rosenfeld and Joel Anderson contributed to the reporting for this article. 

Methodology: To determine the jobs that can make you a millionaire before 65, GOBankingRates analyzed salary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics; jobs used in this study have the highest mean pay as of May 2021, according to its Occupational Employment Statistics. The study takes the annual salary of each given job, subtracts Federal income taxes (FICA and Medicare taxes included) and the average cost of living in the United States, based on average annual expenditure, sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ 2020 Consumer Expenditure Survey; the difference left over is then multiplied by 35, 30, and 25 years in order to find out whether that job will get you past the $1 million threshold. *Note: The majority of these jobs require additional schooling and the cost of schooling is not accounted for in the study. The study assumes that the listed salary is the salary you earn every year for the given year period. All income taxes calculated using in-house calculator using 2022 tax brackets as sourced from the Tax Foundation. All data was collected on and up to date as of June 10, 2022.