Affluent Meaning & Examples: Are You Affluent?

In this article, we’re going to be covering the meaning of affluent.

But first, it’s important to point out that there are many different definitions of affluent.

So, we’re going to break down the actual numbers and provide you with a benchmark in terms of household income and liquid net worth for the affluent and several other wealth brackets. We will also answer common questions we get asked on this topic as well.

This article is part of our free series on banking, ranging from opening a private bank account to navigating estate planning considerations, which you can access by clicking here.

Feel free to use the table of contents to jump ahead to the sections most relevant to you.

Table of Contents

  1. Affluent Meaning
  2. Examples of Affluent
  3. Frequently Asked Questions
  4. Do You Want Help Opening Bank Accounts?

Affluent Meaning

Affluent, meaning an individual that has attained a specific level of wealth, typically involves an individual with a household income between USD 100,000 and USD 250,000 and a liquid net worth between USD 100,000 to USD 1,000,000.

As we’ll explain below, after someone exceeds the upper limits of these thresholds, they are then in the realm of high-net-worth individuals. To help understand the specific thresholds for these groups, we will share the specific wealth brackets below as well.

Examples of Affluent

As mentioned, one of the most challenging steps in defining the meaning of affluent is that many groups, financial institutions, and tax agencies, have different thresholds for each group of wealthy individuals. With this in mind, we are sharing what we consider to be the most accurate, with the understanding that affluence refers to mass affluent.

Examples of Affluent

Examples of affluent that are often used interchangeably by the general public include (1) the mass affluent, (2) high-net-worth, (3) very-high-net-worth, and (4) ultra-high-net-worth. However, these four segments are not the same. We will provide a brief overview of the net worth expectations that are generally accepted for both below.

Mass affluent:

Net worth: USD 100,000 to USD 1,000,000

High-net-worth:

Net worth: USD 1,000,000 to USD 5,000,000

Very-high-net-worth:

Net worth: USD 5,000,000 to USD 30,000,000

Ultra-high-net-worth:

Net worth: USD 30,000,000 and above

Does Affluent Mean Rich?

Affluent and rich are interchangeable in most situations. However, depending on who you speak to, they can mean very different things. In most cases, affluent refers to someone who is part of the “mass affluent”, which is a consumer segment consisting of individuals with an income between USD 100,000 and USD 250,000 and liquid net worth of USD 100,000. On the other hand, to be considered rich, you typically need to have an income above USD 250,000 and liquid net worth of at least USD 1,000,000.

What Is the Difference Between Wealthy and Affluent?

The main difference between the wealthy and the affluent is how these terms are defined. For example, the wealthy typically refers to individuals with more than USD 1,000,000 in liquid assets while the affluent typically refers to individuals with more than USD 100,000 but less than USD 1,000,000.

Importantly, the way that these terms are defined varies widely. In fact, different banks operating in the same jurisdictions will offer different definitions for these terms. Likewise, different geographic regions may also have an impact on how wealthy and affluent are defined.

For example, in a location like Singapore, where 25% of the population are millionaires, it takes more to be considered wealthy than in Toronto where only 1.7% of the population are millionaires.

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are a few of the most common questions we receive from people looking into affluent meaning. If you have further questions you would like to ask our team, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

What Does It Mean If Someone Is Affluent?

In general, if someone is affluent, it typically means that they have a reasonably high income and a portion of their net worth in liquid assets. However, many sources contest the specific amount of income and net worth.

Additionally, affluent may refer to a broad segment or it can refer to mass affluent as a specific segment. In either case, affluent individuals typically have an income between USD 100,000 and USD 250,000 and a liquid net worth of at least USD 100,000.

What’s Another Word for Affluent?

Another word that many use for affluent is rich. That said, wealthy is also interchangeable with the term affluent. However, it is important to point out that there is no set definition for any of these terms. And, it is possible for someone to be affluent but to not be rich or wealthy.

What Is an Affluent Culture?

An affluent culture refers to a culture where there is an abundance of resources, opportunities, high-income employment, an educated workforce, and a propensity to generate wealth over a long period of time. In other words, an affluent culture generally aligns with a wealth-building culture and not a consumer culture.

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