Retirement Corpus Sufficient

Is Your Retirement Corpus Sufficient? Use This Reverse Engineering Technique to Find out-A Bonus Guide to Calculate the Right Corpus

Did you know the authenticity of your retirement corpus could be questionable?

Whether you have a sound retirement plan or not, it is certain that you have a retirement corpus figure in your mind.

This retirement corpus is the amount of money you wish to have at the time of your retirement. But, is it large enough to trust your whole retirement life on it?

How sure are you that your corpus is enough for the rest of your life?

Have you ever checked the reliability of your retirement corpus amount?

Use this scientifically proven-reverse engineering inspired technique to check the reliability of your retirement corpus.

In this article, using reverse engineering inspired technique, you will be able to evaluate the corpus gap between your current corpus figure and your actual retirement corpus need.

Here’s foreshadow:

I have also included an authentic guide to find your real retirement corpus. You should definitely use it.

But before we begin, let me be clear about…

What is reverse engineering?

It’s a technique scientists use to deconstruct to understand the working of complex technology. It helps to identify the areas of improvement and make it fail proof.

Use the following 4-step reverse engineering technique to discover the reliability of your retirement corpus.

A ‘FREE Calculator’ is also waiting for you at the end of the 4th step!

Step 1: Choosing the Retirement Corpus

There have been—there still are too many theories on how much corpus you should have at retirement.

One says, you should have a ₹5 Crore corpus at the time of retirement.

Do you think ₹5 Crore enough to retire in India?

Another says: You must have at least twice of your annual income as retirement corpus by the time you reach 35.

And another says: You must channel 25% of your monthly income towards your retirement corpus till retirement at the least.

One over another, theories is abundant!

These are good to get you started. But when it comes to delivering the results you want, they will let you down big time.

The Untold Failure Stories:

There are “failure stories” where people have lost focus chasing after impossible corpus amounts. Only if they had realised, a corpus that big is too big for their need.


Then there are people, who have accumulated their corpus with ease. But when they realise they have failed to consider a vital factor—like medical care—it is already too late to fix the problem. Time will have gone by.

These “failure stories” are often not taken as lessons but forgotten. It is either because of unrealistic confidence or silly ignorance.

But hey! Don’t be hard on yourself, everybody makes mistakes.

Regardless, I want you to pick a corpus figure—any figure which you think would suffice your whole retirement life.

Do It Yourself, Retirement Corpus Reliability Check:

Is 2 Crore Enough to Retire?

Let’s check!

Choose ₹2 crore as the target corpus figure. You can still use your existing corpus figure alongside to work out the corpus reliability.

Practical Example: Step 1
Corpus at Retirement ₹2 Crore

Take a piece of paper and write down your corpus figure. This is going to get interesting. Let’s move down to the second step.

Step 2: Your Period in Retirement

Your period in retirement should be the second basic thing about your retirement after corpus.

It is the load on your retirement corpus.

The larger the load, the lesser the retirement corpus can perform.

Fortunately or unfortunately, it is our innate quality to tend to live longer. And it means your retirement corpus has to be big enough to not fail you.

Retirement Corpus Reliability Check in Step 2:

We chose 2 Crore as retirement corpus in the previous step for our practical example.

Now, it is time to choose how long this retirement corpus has to give retirement income. And it is always done in a simple calculation.

Retirement Period = Life Expectancy – Retirement Age

Practical Example: Step 2

If your retirement age is 60 and your life expectancy is 80 years of age. Then your period in retirement is 20 years.

Likewise, write down your period in retirement from your retirement plan, or calculate yours now.

Using steps 1 & 2, you have the two details necessary to progress to the following third step.

Step 3: Find Your Income From Retirement Corpus

Can your income from the retirement corpus live up to the inflation growth during your retirement?

The above question gives you no choice but to invest your retirement corpus.

But, a return on corpus does not mean it will grow exponentially since there’ll be inflation growth to bring it down. All around the globe, the technique is to have a return on the corpus that could beat the inflation by a good margin.

For example: If the inflation growth rate is predicted to be at a constant 6% for 20 years from now, it is good to invest in a 6-7% return instrument.

However, it is relatively safe to invest in an investment instrument that can give you an 8% return on your retirement corpus.

Corpus Reliability Check in Step 3:

Here is a table showing the possible income.

Your select ‘retirement corpus’ can give you the shown monthly income for select ‘period of retirement’ in the first year of your retirement.

Assuming the inflation growth rate @ 8%, and the return on corpus @ 8%

Corpus → ₹2 Crore ₹3 Crore ₹5 Crore ₹7 Crore ₹10 Crore
Retirement Period ↓ First Annual Retirement Income in Lakhs*
20 Years ₹10.8 ₹16.20 ₹27 ₹37.8 ₹54
25 Years ₹8.64 ₹12.96 ₹21.6 ₹30.24 ₹43.2
30 Years ₹7.20 ₹10.8 ₹18 ₹25.2 ₹36
35 Years ₹6.17 ₹9.25 ₹15.43 ₹21.6 ₹30.85
40 Years ₹5.40 ₹8.1 ₹13.5 ₹18.9 ₹27
45 Years ₹480 ₹7.2 ₹12 ₹16.8 ₹24

Note*: The Annual Retirement Income shown in the table is only for the first year in retirement. For the subsequent years in retirement, the corpus will give you inflation adjusted increased income.

Your choice of the corpus for your choice of ‘period in retirement’ can give you the inflation-adjusted annual income, indeed.

So, from the table what is your first annual income in retirement?

Dividing by 12, what is your resulting monthly income in retirement?

Your Monthly Income in Retirement:_______

Practical Example: Step 3

If 2 Crore is your retirement corpus with 20 years in retirement, it would give you a monthly income of ₹90,000 in the first year.

Do you think 90,000 a month would be enough for all your expenses?

Of course, it will look sufficient for today—but you are not retiring today, are you?
Read the step 4, it should not take you more than a minute.

Step 4: Compare Your Expenses

The monthly income which we saw in the previous step is for the future. That is, at the time of your retirement.
This step of reliability check is pretty much a reality check.

The monthly retirement income which we have seen in the step 3 is will not be the same in today’s term, unless you retire today.

All we need to do is account for the inflation growth from today to the year of your retirement. Let’s check it below!

Corpus Reliability Check in Step 4:

Technically, the retirement monthly income in today’s value should be able to suffice present monthly income.
Acknowledge the inflation and cut down the inflation.

Assume the inflation to be 8%—as seen before— to be safe. Also assuming your retirement is due in 15 years, see the table below to check the reliability of the retirement monthly income.

Practical Example: Step 4
Retirement Corpus ₹2 Crore
Period in Retirement 20Years
Retirement Monthly Income ₹90,000
Retirement Due in 15Years
Inflation (Today—Retirement) 8%
Retirement Monthly Income(Today’s Value) ₹28,373
Present Monthly Expense ₹30,000
Formula (Retirement Income Today) – (Present Expense)
Difference 28,373 – 30,000= – ₹1,627
Reliability NOT RELIABLE!

If this resulting ‘retirement monthly income’ in today’s term is greater than your current monthly expense—your retirement corpus is reliable enough.

But, if the difference is ‘zero’ or very close or in negative value you must reassess your retirement plan and your retirement corpus.

You can also use our “FREE Basic Corpus Reliability Calculator”—also implementing the ‘Reverse Engineering’ technique—for different corpus figures.

Click here to download the calculator

Or, simply you can use the retirement calculator shown below, to figure out how much you need to invest to attain your desired retirement corpus.

Now tell me! Is ₹2 Crore enough for retirement in India?

Or how much corpus do you think is enough to retire in India?

Intermediate Summary

This Reverse Engineered technique to find out the reliability of retirement corpus is one of the basic reliability checks.

Even though an average retirement corpus will get a “RELIABLE” result, there is a chance it will change for multiple reasons.

You as an independent individual require a more specific, organized and holistic approach towards deciding the retirement corpus. The key is, to be honest and realistic.

Answer the following questions before completely finalizing your retirement corpus:

“Honesty is the best policy. But self-honesty is even better”

  • Is your retirement monthly income from corpus really sufficient?
  • Did you account one-time and recurring annual expenses, apart from monthly expenses?
  • Can your corpus provide for these one-time and annual recurring expenses?
  • Did you consider worst-case scenarios in retirement—drop in return rate, a spike in inflation growth?

“Reality cannot be whatever you want—Reality is often disappointing”

  • Is your lifespan expectation accurate?
  • Did you consider the medical history and lifestyle to evaluate your lifespan?
  • If you assume lifespan from past family history, did you consider the medical advancements today?

As ironic as it may sound, the best case scenario of your lifespan will be the worst case scenario for your retirement plan.

For example: If you assume the period of retirement life to be 30 years. Let’s say, it is from 60 years of age to 80 years.

But in reality, if you live for 85 years, the increase in 5 years is 6%.

There you go! You will have to handle another 6% shrinkage in addition to the inflation rate.

Also Read How to handle the effects of inflation during Pre-retirement and Post Retirement

Worst-case scenario: You will have used up your entire corpus by age 80 itself.

If you are smart enough—you may contact us anytime to get your right corpus figure.

Or if you are cool enough to calculate your own right corpus figure, read the guide below using the ‘forward engineering’ technique.

Your Retirement Corpus Planning Guide

Have you ever asked yourself “How much money do I need to retire in India?”

If you have, you are already half-way there to enjoy the financially secure retirement.

In this guide, we will see a list of all the things to consider and not to consider while calculating the retirement corpus.

It is crucial to do this before making any investment plan for retirement, since this checklist will help you make your retirement plan blueprint.

Use this 6 Step checklist to calculate your right retirement corpus.

And a bonus section is waiting for you following these 6 steps.

1. Get a Financial Plan

“Don’t Lose Your Today Worrying about the Tomorrow”

There are millions of people—if not billions—who have missed to live their present while preparing for the future.

I certainly do not mean you should go out and enjoy the life spending your hard earned money. What the above statement means is: your present financial goals are as important as your retirement goal.

You should not—you must not trade your present goals for the future—or vice versa.

“Why are they equally important though?” you might ask.

No matter how hard you try, some of the financial goals are impossible to avoid or compromise on—we often call them financial responsibilities. And it is our innate quality to compromise one for another.

The financial goal in the near future will appear as a high priority than the retirement that is to come in future. Ergo, compromise on retirement corpus.

What A Financial Plan Does?

A financial plan will give you your financial goals on one hand and your retirement corpus—which you are about to calculate—on the other.

Hence, with this holistic view of your finances, it will be much easier to make sound financial decisions.

With that said, let’s sort out the future.

2. Accurate Your Retirement Period

Your retirement life period is the BIG elephant your retirement corpus is going to feed.

A big elephant will need a bigger food source. And it is always better to imagine a big elephant than to starve the elephant.

Okay, I’ll stop the metaphor for now.

The thing is: you should expect yourself to—retire early than your plan—live longer than your assumption.

Do these things to evaluate more accurate period of retirement life.

i) Retirement Age:

  • If you are planning to retire at 60 years of age, expect yourself to retire at least a couple of years sooner, i.e. at 58 years of age.
  • Close to the retirement, no matter how strong you are mentally, physically you should be fit too.
  • And at any day, your health should come before everything else.
  • However, it does not mean you must retire at the said age but expect the worst case scenario.
  • Therefore, this adds a minimum of 12 months to your retirement life.

Axis NIfty 100

ii) Lifespan:

  • Do Not Assume!
  • Assess your lifestyle and get a complete medical evaluation.
  • Make changes to your lifestyle, if necessary.
  • There are advancements in the field of medicine that can prolong your life.
  • With the help of your medical evaluation arrive at a lifespan as accurate as possible.
  • For the worst case scenario, add a minimum of 2 years buffer to your lifespan.

Following these steps will give you the closest to accurate retirement period. At the same time, it is also accounted for the worst-case scenario.

Period in Retirement
Formula For Example
Lifespan 85+3 (88)
Retirement Age 60-2 (58)
= =
Years in Retirement 30
* *
12 (months) 360 months

Enter Your Value: Period in Retirement = _____months.

With the completion of this second step, you have laid the foundation. Now, you only have to build over it with the following steps.

3. Assess Today’s Expense

“Expense” is definitely one of the most talked about topics.

I don’t want you to spend your time reading about what you already know. But that doesn’t mean you can skip this step.

If you are here reading about retirement corpus, you are wise enough to keep track of your expenses already.

Now, get the average monthly expenses from your expenses tracker—mobile application, a spreadsheet on cloud, pocket journal or any other type of expense tracker— if you have one.

But, if you don’t have an expenses tracker: you can download one from here.

Presuming you have your today’s monthly expenses information ready in the checklist, let’s move to the fourth step.

4. Project Tomorrow’s Expenses

You have to know your expenses at retirement to know how much money is enough to retire in India, i.e. your corpus.

Identify two things:

    i) Expenses that might go away.
    ii) Potential new expenses.

See the checklist below: include all that applies to you.

i) Expenses that might go away:

Let’s call it the Vanishing Expenses.

These are your expenses today which you will possibly not need after your retirement.

  • House Rent
  • Daily Travel Expenses
  • Work-Related Expenses
    • a. Business Clothing Expense
      b. Business Outing Expense
  • Annual Income Tax Expenses
  • Lifestyle Expenses
  • Debt Payments
  • Insurance Premium Payments.

Identify other expenses that might go away from your monthly expenses tracker, include them in the list.

Using the list calculate the Vanishing Expenses by adding all the expenses in this list.

Some of these—like house rent, debt payment— will be taken care of by your financial plan before you retire while the rest are work-related. Hence, you WON’T NEED to consider these things to monthly expense in retirement.

ii) Potential New Expenses:

As you shed some expenses in retirement, you will also pick up some. They include,

  • Healthcare Expenses (that are not covered by insurance)
  • Annual National/International Trip
  • Taxes on Corpus Investment (If any)
  • Charity
  • Expense Towards Retirement Hobby

Include all that applies to you. Do some research and get the accurate expense figure to add to your monthly expense in retirement.

For annual expenses, divide expense sum by 12, since we are calculating in terms of “per month”.

Add all the potential new expenses in the list to find the PNE.

Retirement Expense in Today’s Value
Formula For Example
Today’s Monthly Expenses (from step 3) ₹40,000
Total Vanishing Expenses ₹12,000
+ +
Total Potential New Expenses ₹9500
= =
Required Retirement Expense in Today’s Value ₹37,500

Enter Your Value: Retirement Expense in Today’s Value = ____₹

The resulting number is the amount of money you will need a month if you are retiring today.

But if you have no plan of retiring now, we have to include the inflation factor. Inflation factor, check out how to include it in the following step.

Note: All the expenses we have seen above are in addition to the ‘monthly standard expenses’ including food, clothing and basic amenities.

5. Calculate Retirement Income

Your right retirement corpus required is almost taking shape.

Now use the data you calculated in the previous step in the following formula to get your retirement income.

That is, the amount of money you will need to manage your monthly expenses in your retirement.

Like we did in the step 4 of reliability check, let us assume retirement is due in 15years (n years) here too.

Required Retirement Income
Formula For Example
Retirement Expense in Today’s Value (in the above table) ₹37,500
* *
(1 + r%)n = inflation factor (1+ 8%)15 = 3.172
Required Monthly Income @ Retirement ₹1,18,950

The resulting value will be the monthly income requirement for you at retirement.

Enter Your Value: Required Monthly Income @ Retirement = ____₹

Note: This inflation rate is only for the period from the present day to the year of your retirement—not for the entire lifespan period.

Now, the answer to—How much corpus for retirement in India?—we will find it in the following section.

6. Your Retirement Corpus

Here is your answer, just a few seconds and a simple calculation away.

The only difference is that, this retirement corpus is authentic and trustworthy.

We have the “Required Monthly Income @ Retirement” on one hand from step 5. On the other, we have the total “Period in Retirement” in months.

One word: Multiply!

Your Retirement Corpus
Formula For Example
Required Monthly Income @ Retirement ₹1,18,950
* *
Period in Retirement 360 months
= =
Actual Retirement Corpus ₹4,28,22,000

But since we are expecting a steady 8% return from the entire corpus amount, it will be giving you returns more than you need. “Power of compounding” you know.

In this scenario, you can include a “discounting factor” to reduce the retirement corpus that you should accumulate.

What is this “discounting factor”?

The number .925926 is the discounting factor. You can call it the “Golden Number” of retirement planning.

Through years of retirement planning and its success, it is the number we have derived with our extensive research.

Important Note: This discounting factor is calculated by ASSUMING return rate on retirement corpus and inflation, both to be at 8%. “Discounting Factor” is subject to change with changes in the return rate and/or inflation rate.

Your Retirement Corpus ₹4,28,22,000
* *
Discounting Factor .925926
= =
Your Retirement Corpus ₹3,96,50,000

What is your resulting corpus figure?

Enter Your Value: Retirement Corpus = ______
At last, you have your answer to “How much corpus is required for retirement in India?”

But wait! It isn’t over.

Read the lucky seven!

Bonus Step: Improve Retirement Corpus Success Rate

Our aim is to get the most out of our retirement corpus by employing smart retirement planning strategies.

Since it is better to not worry about time and chance or “uncertainty” or “worst-case” scenario caused by inflation, we can employ this particular ‘constructive loop’ strategy.

Practical Example:

If your retirement corpus is—let’s say ₹2 Crore—you can create an additional feeder investment based on your original corpus amount to give your retirement corpus a two-point support.

What is a feeder investment?

A feeder investment is a stand-alone investment which will generate money using high return investment instruments to feed the basic corpus from time to time to withstand inflation.

The Process:

  • Take the basic corpus (i.e.: ₹2 Crore)
  • Calculate the master corpus by multiplying the master corpus by 1.43 (i.e.: 100/70)
  • The master corpus calculated from the basic corpus is ₹2.85 Crore.
  • Invest the basic retirement corpus (i.e.: ₹2 Crore) in a secure investment instrument that can give 8% returns.
  • Invest the remaining—feeder corpus (i.e.: ₹85.7lakhs) in equity mutual funds that can give you 12% returns in the long term.
  • Get your retirement income from the master ₹2 Crore corpus
  • Meanwhile, your feeder corpus ₹85.7lakhs will get doubled in just 6 years (i.e.: 1.7 2 Crore).
  • When it gets doubled, take 50% of the feeder corpus (i.e.: ₹85.7 lakhs) to add it to your master investment instrument.
  • Repeat the above step in said time.

This unique strategy is a ‘constructive loop’ in which your corpus will feed on itself to give you more and more return—for the same corpus amount.

Do you—after reading this guide—think it is possible to retire and stay rich as well in India?

What do you think is the right corpus amount to retire rich in India?

I’ll leave that question to you and this guide to help you find that answer by yourself.


Retirement planning should start way before you think it should start.

And you literally do not have to be in your 40+ age to start planning for retirement. Financial advisors all around the globe say: planning for retirement in the mid to late twenties reduces the financial load in middle age by 16%.

Every retirement plan starts with setting the target corpus. I hope this guide has helped you to set the right retirement corpus to plan your future and beyond.

If you find this guide to be useful, share it with your social circle—with the people you want to spend your retirement life with.

And if you have any doubts, you know where to reach us.


2 thoughts on “Is Your Retirement Corpus Sufficient? Use This Reverse Engineering Technique to Find out-A Bonus Guide to Calculate the Right Corpus”

  1. I have gone through your Reliable Retirement Corpus article and was highly impressed by your simplicity in explaining the subject with practical example. Thank you for enlightening on this.
    As I am retiring on the last day of June 2020 from the PSU services, my immediate concern is to channelize the lump sum Retirement Corpus (Almost Rs. 2 crores) in to various investable instruments. My main objectives are classified in order of priorities as: a)Maximum Corpus protection b)derive regular income of Rs. 30,000 per month at least c) and growth of capital if feasible.
    Considering the current economical situation on deteriorating interest rates, inflation and ever growing financial investment risks , I would like to define a proper investment plan by identifying safe yet income oriented financial instruments, so that my above said broad objectives could be met and monitored subsequently independently by myself. Hence looking out for a suitable guidance and formidable solution in this matter. Regards.

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