I heard a term for the first time the other day, that I had never heard before and I found interesting. Most people have heard the term, DINKs (dual income no kids), but I think HENRYs is a bit less popular.
What Does HENRYs Stand For?
When it comes to personal finance HENRYs is a an acronym that stands for:
Apparently, and despite my unawareness of the term, the HENRYs acronym has been around for a while,
The term HENRYs was coined in a 2003 Fortune Magazine article to refer to a segment of families earning between $250,000 and $500,000, but not having much left after taxes, schooling, housing and family costs – not to mention saving for an affluent retirement
After seeing that it has been around a long time, I had to check google trends comparing HENRYs rich (since I couldn’t just do HENRYs) vs DINKs.
HENRYs on Long Island / NYC Area
I know it probably sounds obscene to most of the country but there has to be a ridiculous amount of HENRYs floating around the New York tri-state area. Let’s take a random family on Long Island – brand new cop at the age of 25 and a brand new teacher at the age of 25:
- Average Suffolk County Cop after a decade of experience is a bit north of $100,000 (my guess this number is much, much higher if we take into account).
- Average Teacher in Suffolk County makes $90,000
Without even really trying we are at $190,000 which is damn close to that made up level.
Does the Financial Acronym HENRYs Make Sense?
While I understand the idea behind the acronym I actually don’t think it makes sense. My main ‘problem‘ is with the “Y.” Other than to make an acronym work, why is the word “yet” included? It seems that there is an assumption that a one or two high earner family will reach the ever moving and desired “rich” status.
Earned income only has 3 places to go – you can save/invest it, you pay your taxes with it, or you spend it. That’s it! I don’t care if a family is making $46,000, $460,000 or even 7 figures, there is absolutely no indication that they are going to be wealthy if there 3 places is heavy on the bottom two.