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the_dork

What Is A 'good' Wage These Days?

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I remember when I started work (on about average wage) thinking how within 5 years I'd be on 40k and that would be a decent wage. Nearly five years on, I'm not anywhere near that and have become much less ambitious/work orientated anyway for various reasons, though I have nothing against those who are.

However, I was thinking about whether after tax etc you;'d be that well off on that figure now anyway? I know it's a good wage outside the South East but it would take my partner to be earning a similar amount for that to make a real difference to me in terms of actual lifestyle, still be struggling to own/maintain our own home, have a car etc. Would probably eat out more and have a better holiday (neither of which really interest me) but day to day lifestyle probably not so different.

40k puts you in the top 10% of earners in this country. And the fractional 0.1% globally. But is anyone here on that (or higher) and do you actually feel 'comfortable'? What do you reckon is a good wage these days? I reckon it must be 50k now

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I remember when I started work (on about average wage) thinking how within 5 years I'd be on 40k and that would be a decent wage. Nearly five years on, I'm not anywhere near that and have become much less ambitious/work orientated anyway for various reasons, though I have nothing against those who are.

However, I was thinking about whether after tax etc you;'d be that well off on that figure now anyway? I know it's a good wage outside the South East but it would take my partner to be earning a similar amount for that to make a real difference to me in terms of actual lifestyle, still be struggling to own/maintain our own home, have a car etc. Would probably eat out more and have a better holiday (neither of which really interest me) but day to day lifestyle probably not so different.

40k puts you in the top 10% of earners in this country. And the fractional 0.1% globally. But is anyone here on that (or higher) and do you actually feel 'comfortable'? What do you reckon is a good wage these days? I reckon it must be 50k now

It's not really a good wage when you factor in inflation at 15% (I ignore CPI as it ignores most of the things I buy). Wages are going down not just in real terms but nominally too. There's a whole host of reasons for this.

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It's not really a good wage when you factor in inflation at 15% (I ignore CPI as it ignores most of the things I buy). Wages are going down not just in real terms but nominally too. There's a whole host of reasons for this.

At present 40k would let a person on their own live pretty comfortably (it's more than I'm on and I've no debts or financial worries, other than continual annoyance about overpriced houses), outside the SE. Inflation doesn't change that right now but obviously will make it a crapper wage fairly quickly. I wouldn't like to have a family to look after though, that would no doubt leave me with a fair bit less.

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At present 40k would let a person on their own live pretty comfortably (it's more than I'm on and I've no debts or financial worries, other than continual annoyance about overpriced houses), outside the SE. Inflation doesn't change that right now but obviously will make it a crapper wage fairly quickly. I wouldn't like to have a family to look after though, that would no doubt leave me with a fair bit less.

Location and dependants are the major weightings. I'm a couple of thou over the national average, and partner on 20k. Up in the East of Scotland we can live very well on that, but we have no dependants to worry about.

Add 2.4 kids, and hence a bigger home, and we'd see a significant drop in our lifestyle. No-where near the breadline however, so still wouldn't complain.

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I figure you need to find out what the effective marginal rate of tax including the benefits withdrawn.

So for a single male over 25...

Housing benefit (typically paid at £125 per week) = £6500

Council Tax benefit = £1000

JSA or income support (£65 per week) = £3380

So thats about £10k tax free.

Given if you actually work for a living everything over £7000pa gets 11% NIC and 20% PAYE that £10k tax free in benefits is the equivalent of a job paying about £15k a year. So the true marginal tax rate of a £15k salary is near 100%. At £30k its 50%. I guess i feel that 40% is the highest acceptable rate, so i would suggest a wage of under £35k is taking the p1$$

And thats just for a single male. Add kids in and the Gravy train really gets good.

Obviously stop HB support for the rental market and i think fair would= less.

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I'm interested to hear people's answers on this; I'm on £35k a year (single earner w/ 2 kids) and I don't have a pot to p!ss in... we have no outgoings on debt but have to penny pinch to stay in the black each month with hardly anything left over for savings. Living in SE (Berkshire).

I think a family down here needs around 50k coming in to live 'comfortably'

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I'm interested to hear people's answers on this; I'm on £35k a year (single earner w/ 2 kids) and I don't have a pot to p!ss in... we have no outgoings on debt but have to penny pinch to stay in the black each month with hardly anything left over for savings. Living in SE (Berkshire).

I think a family down here needs around 50k coming in to live 'comfortably'

It'll be the family, and maybe the SE. £32k is fine for me without either of those to worry about. Getting a decent house is the problem, but with prices still stupid you need to be on massively more. I suppose that's a problem because I can't help feeling that it should be enough for a family without worrying about every single penny.

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Enough to pay the bills, go out onec a week, get away once a year and have a bit in spare when the washing machine breaks down or some similar catastrophe that happens now and again. ;)

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Some ball-park figures for myself and wife per month;

Rent (1 bed flat, Kent) £650

Unavoidable bills (Council tax, heat, water) £210

Avoidable bills (Phone, TV/license, internet) £100

Household food £200

Diesel £170

Eating out / takeaway / booze £200

So for an absolute rat race existence about £1200 would cover it. For a more normal lifestyle plus ability to save a bit of money £2000. No worries and comfy would be £3000 - so about £25k each. Single income £40K would be o.k. I reckon.

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Given if you actually work for a living everything over £7000pa gets 11% NIC and 20% PAYE that £10k tax free in benefits is the equivalent of a job paying about £15k a year. So the true marginal tax rate of a £15k salary is near 100%. At £30k its 50%. I guess i feel that 40% is the highest acceptable rate, so i would suggest a wage of under £35k is taking the p1$$

NIC is now 12% btw

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A 'good' wage is a relative term.

Some can live off of £1500 a month quite comfortably and even save, whilst others cannot make ends meet at £5000 a month and have an out of control debt.

It's really up to you.

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A 'good' wage is a relative term.

Some can live off of £1500 a month quite comfortably and even save, whilst others cannot make ends meet at £5000 a month and have an out of control debt.

It's really up to you.

Yup, for the past 6 years I've never made more than £1600 a month (pre tax) and I live quite comfortably, though I don't have the heating on so often and I don't eat meat, I feel quite contented at what I have...

For example when I think about owning a house I always think of the horrendous running costs they must have. Same with big flashy cars....

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A 'good' wage is a relative term.

Some can live off of £1500 a month quite comfortably and even save, whilst others cannot make ends meet at £5000 a month and have an out of control debt.

It's really up to you.

+1

I've earnt around 35K for the past five years and I've never had it so good, because to me that's big money. It's all relative. To some 35K is nothing.

I've always lived very frugally, because money's always been tight. Now I'm earning more, I haven't blown it on purchases. I just saved the whole lot, because I'll never be used to spending more than a little. Old habits die hard.

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Some ball-park figures for myself and wife per month;

Rent (1 bed flat, Kent) £650

Unavoidable bills (Council tax, heat, water) £210

Avoidable bills (Phone, TV/license, internet) £100

Household food £200

Diesel £170

Eating out / takeaway / booze £200

So for an absolute rat race existence about £1200 would cover it. For a more normal lifestyle plus ability to save a bit of money £2000. No worries and comfy would be £3000 - so about £25k each. Single income £40K would be o.k. I reckon.

Hi deft, I enjoy these little threads, wonder why they are here rather than spending some time on the main forum before moving to anecdotals. Anyway, my spend is broadly similar to you with similar calculations for earnings. Except of course, I live in bristol where a similar rent will get you a slightly grotty 3 bed house. Or a flat like yours in Clifton, bit of a no brainer really.

We have no debts and no dependents so you can imagine what a household gross of six figures is like. We spend our cash on multiple holidays, but I still nave plenty left over to invest, fortunately profitably. I keep a number of expensive hobbies at little personal financial effect.

I'm not bragging, just trying to highlight how many different variables can affect life quality other than salary. People have mentioned several on this thread already. In addition to location, I would say that partnering up with another person in a relationship but crucially not increasing costs is highly beneficial to the bank balance. Opposite of the benefits crowd of course.

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+1

I've earnt around 35K for the past five years and I've never had it so good, because to me that's big money. It's all relative. To some 35K is nothing.

I've always lived very frugally, because money's always been tight. Now I'm earning more, I haven't blown it on purchases. I just saved the whole lot, because I'll never be used to spending more than a little. Old habits die hard.

I earn around the figure in the OPs title, and although I feel very lucky (and make a shed load more than that for my employer), I still live as though I'm on 20-25k ish. I can however over pay a good amount on my mortgage each month, and still save a couple more hundred. But I do go through phases of wanting a new car etc, but then come to my senses and prefer to reduce my mortgage. The only thing is my friends think I earn 20-25k, which I let them... it's just easier.

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I earn around the figure in the OPs title, and although I feel very lucky (and make a shed load more than that for my employer), I still live as though I'm on 20-25k ish. I can however over pay a good amount on my mortgage each month, and still save a couple more hundred. But I do go through phases of wanting a new car etc, but then come to my senses and prefer to reduce my mortgage. The only thing is my friends think I earn 20-25k, which I let them... it's just easier.

...that is a good tactic to have when you get an increase in pay still live as if you didn't....it may come in handy when you have to take a drop in income.

...getting the urge to buy a new car is comparable to when women get the urge to have a new baby...if you wait long enough it eventually goes away..... ;)

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...that is a good tactic to have when you get an increase in pay still live as if you didn't....it may come in handy when you have to take a drop in income.

...getting the urge to buy a new car is comparable to when women get the urge to have a new baby...if you wait long enough it eventually goes away..... ;)

I had the urge to buy a new car when the old one started falling apart. Sometimes you have to put up with these expenses (although I could've bought a cheaper one of course).

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Some interesting responses. I do agree that people have different subjective value of money, but ultimately that comes down to different definitions of 'good' in relation to my OP.

I should also add that weirdly, despite having no desperate desire to earn more, I would love to work fewer hours. Would rather get an extra day off and have the same salary than a 25% increase for doing the same.

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Some interesting responses. I do agree that people have different subjective value of money, but ultimately that comes down to different definitions of 'good' in relation to my OP.

I should also add that weirdly, despite having no desperate desire to earn more, I would love to work fewer hours. Would rather get an extra day off and have the same salary than a 25% increase for doing the same.

Very definitely, and one thing that always makes me keep half an eye open for other jobs is that I won't get any more holiday no matter how long I stay here (but people who joined before me do, which doesn't help). If I had the choice I'd lose a week's pay for an extra week's holiday.

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Some interesting responses. I do agree that people have different subjective value of money, but ultimately that comes down to different definitions of 'good' in relation to my OP.

I should also add that weirdly, despite having no desperate desire to earn more, I would love to work fewer hours. Would rather get an extra day off and have the same salary than a 25% increase for doing the same.

I have given serious consideration to the this for some time. Obviously I won't be getting a 25% increase but I reckon I could take a cut of 20% for a an extra day off.

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I agree about the working less hours instead of a rise, but the problem is you still be expected to do the same amount of work. Infact, this year I've been firing on all cylinders due to the work load I haven't been able to come here! lol

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  • 312 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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