The online lottery provider Lottoland recently did some research into just how the average American spends his or her money over the course of a lifetime. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics they have uncovered some very surprising information about just where our money goes, and not all of it makes for pleasant reading! In order to avoid getting bogged down in reams of complicated numbers, they have presented their results based on a hypothetical $100 to represent the money we earn over a lifetime. Find out just how much of that hard-earned cash goes where!
So where does the bulk of our lifetime’s earnings end up? Hopefully you are prepared for some bad news because, as you may have guessed, the largest share of our income ends up in the hands of the government as taxes. Based on that hypothetical $100 of lifetime salary that means that a total of $13.70 goes to the tax-man. To put that into perspective, the lowest chunk of money ends up paying off student loans, as this accounts for a total of just 90 cents out of the hundred dollars.
Transport takes a big chunk out of the lifetime earnings of the average American citizen. Purchasing vehicles uses up just over five percent of our total income. Miscellaneous expenses related to keeping those vehicles on the roads takes out another four bucks. Don’t forget the gasoline and oil required to keep it on the road: that’s another $2.10 over the course of a lifetime. Then add to that ‘transportation’ in general – including flights, subway, train, cabs and any other form of transport we don’t own – and this takes a further $12.80 out of our total.
There are some things in life that are unavoidable – like death and taxes, for example! Another is that we’ve all got to eat, and food costs money. Eating at home over the course of a lifetime adds $5.70 to the overall bill. Eating out costs an additional $4.50, based on the fact that most people eat more regularly at home than taking more expensive trips to dine out. When we do go out for some entertainment, that tends to cost a pretty penny more often than not. Perhaps that’s why the total for ‘entertainment and culture’ comes to $4.10.
Another thing that is required for a comfortable life is having a roof over our heads. Expenditure on homes that we purchase comes to a hefty $8.10. In comparison, the money spent on rented accommodation amounts to $5.70 of our $100. Check out the full results here where you can find a pretty nifty infographic which helps to visualize exactly where our money goes. Maybe it will make you think twice the next time you take out your wallet!