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A Group Worthy of Attention: Recent EverBank Study Uncovers ‘The High Net Workers’

Frank Trotter | October 1, 2015 3 MIN READ

Assume it’s the weekend and the weather outside is ideal. You’ve yet to leave the house, when you suddenly hear that familiar ringing sound. It’s a sound only you can hear. It’s your job calling out to you. Decision time. Will you trade in the sunny and 75 for work?

If you answered yes, then there’s a chance that you might just qualify as a High Net Worker (HNW). So, you may be asking yourself, “What exactly makes one a HNW? And where in the world did the HNW term come from?”

We’ll get to the first question in a moment. As for the second, the HNW is an EverBank discovery.1 Through our own research study, we’ve pinpointed this new and growing socio-demographic of people across the country. Do you fit the HNW profile?


41-63 yrs
average age
average household income
median investable assets


Much more likely to work 50 or more hours per week, or

12 hrs
more than the
average worker
50 HNW
38 AVG


As the HNW name reveals, they are professionally motivated, hard working and possess lofty career ambitions. They most certainly lead busy lives at work—and likely at home, too. The commitment and dedication to their craft is no doubt impressive. However, as the final study results have shown us, they appear to be so focused on the present that they could be undermining their full financial potential.

HNWs are indeed well off, so much so that the average household probably qualifies as the top 1% in most states. Yet, as they push forward in their demanding careers and play catch-up with their busy lifestyles, they may be missing out on key opportunities to expand and grow their success.

Stability is incredibly important to them. Today, 69% of high net workers consider themselves conservative investors.

Here are more key findings from the report:

  • Approximately one in eight say they will never retire
  • Sixty-nine percent of respondents described themselves as conservative investors
  • Nearly a third has never used a financial advisor, yet 91% believe an advisor would add value to their investment program

HNWs are at a critical time in their lives, as their finances are more complex and their goals are loftier. With such a focus on career and little time for anything else, we see a red flag regarding holistic financial planning.

For the HNW, the job, the income and the assets appear to be there. An even more prosperous future, including retirement, might be within their grasp. That $1 million average Investible Assets looks good on the surface, but a typical financial planner would note, without a personal analysis, that the stockpile will only contribute about $40,000 annually in retirement.

The average High Net Worker may want to pause for a moment and channel a small amount of that daily work energy into their long-term financial planning.

Making Their Mark On The Real Estate Market

HNWs are definitely movers and shakers – at least as spenders. Historically, adults nearing retirement have downsized their homes. HNWs, however, are doing the opposite. Thirty-three percent plan to make a real estate purchase over the next two years, with many of these expected to be second or third homes.

As EverBank Home Lending EVP Tom Wind told me, “High Net Workers have money to spend, are investing in real estate and tapping into the equity of their existing homes to expand their residential footprint. Within our own business, we are seeing HNWs use home equity lines of credit to take advantage of low interest rates and a rising real estate market. Even more interesting than that though, is the trend of these High Net Workers helping their adult children with down payments. It’s helping bolster certain parts of the market.”

Onward & Upward

There’s a lot to be optimistic about here, and for the HNW, some planning and diversification actions appear warranted. For all of us, regardless of our socio-demographic, this is a good reminder to slow down from time to time, smell the roses and give a bit more thought to the future and how best to maximize our financial potential.

I’ve only touched on a portion of the results, as I know you’ve probably got a lot more to get to today, but you can download the full report here.

Frank Trotter
Frank Trotter
Executive Vice President, Chairman Global Markets
Frank Trotter
Frank Trotter
Executive Vice President, Chairman Global Markets
Frank has over 35 years of experience in banking and global markets. When not in the office, you might find him speaking on the financial conference circuit, giving an interview on the latest world economic news, or at the nearest ice rink playing pick-up hockey.

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  1. METHODOLOGY- Data for the EverBank High Net Worker Study was gathered through an online survey conducted by ORC International, in combination with psychographic insights from Simmons National Consumer Survey, furnished by Boyce::Mangin. The ORC International online study was conducted among a sample of 500 adults ages 25 and older who have a household income of $200,000 or more, are financial decision makers for their household, and are investors. The survey was fielded from September 25, 2014 – October 1, 2014. Simmons National Consumer Study data referenced herein is from a June 2014 fielding of the Simmons survey, which included 233,235 Americans. High Net Workers were identified in the data as those with $250,000 or more in household income and some investable assets. The average American household depicted by the Simmons dataset reported an average household income of $89,000.