When looking for jobs or looking to make a career change, one of the major things to consider, despite what many people will argue, is the salary and if it will be enough for you to live your life comfortably and also help you save some money for the future.
What deems as comfortable or a good salary will vary from person to person as everyone has different needs and financial goals they need to meet.
We’ll be discussing if $80k is a good salary for a family, what contributes to the decision of a salary being enough for a family and how far can $80k get you within different areas of the US.
As we briefly mentioned above, whether $80k is good enough will depend on the family and their circumstances.
As of February 2020, the annual household income in the U.S was just over $87K, so statistically, $80K is not far off the national average.
However, the rating of your salary will depend on a handful of factors that we’ll be discussing below.
The Size Of Your Family
In 2019, the median household income for a family of four was $68K, which means that the annual salary of $80K is a lot higher than the average American family.
The more people you have living in your household, the more expenses they will accumulate just by living in the home such as clothing, provision of food, and amenities like water, electricity, etc.
This means that a family of four could probably live more comfortably off $80k than a family of six could as less of the salary will be used to cover the costs of living.
So you’ll need to work out how far an $80K annual salary will go based on your family size and what necessities are required for each person in the household.
Other Forms Of Income
Another factor to consider is if this $80K salary is the only household income, or whether your partner also has a job and if they’ll be contributing to the household income.
We’ve already established that $80K is higher than the median household income in the US, so anything more than $80K will be a significant increase and will provide more stability for a family.
Maybe you have a passive form of income such as stocks, some people can make lots of money when buying stocks when prices are low and savvily selling them again when the prices have dramatically increased, therefore making a profit.
This passive income can considerably increase your household income if you play your cards right, however, it can go the other way as well and lose you money.
Not necessarily an income, but inheritance can also be factored into your household’s financial situation.
If someone in your family has passed away and you’ve received money or assets in their will, then this could help you live a more financially stable life and you may not have to dip into your annual income as much, therefore $80K a year could go further for your family.
Your Living Situation
The cost of living in different states in the US can vary dramatically and whilst $80K may be a very good salary in one state, it may be way under the average household salary in another state.
New York City is now the most expensive place to live in the US, so $80K will not allow you to live a comfortable life as this salary would if you were to live in a state like Texas or Mississippi.
Everything is more expensive in metropolitan areas like NYC, so you’ll be paying extortionate prices for rent/mortgages, utilities, food, and transportation which will quickly eat up your salary, living in a more rural and inexpensive area will leave you with more breathing space financially.
Your Expenses And Outgoings Each Month
Your monthly outgoings are something you need to look into when considering taking a job with an $80K salary. This is anything from a mortgage to your monthly Netflix subscription, anything that you pay every month will come out of your paycheck.
This can also include credit card debt, student loans that need to be paid off monthly, and if you have your car on a lease.
Your Financial Goals
When considering if $80K is enough for your family, think about your long-term and short-term financial goals and if your salary will impact that.
Maybe you’re considering buying a bigger home which will require you to save a big chunk of your salary every month, leaving you and your family with less money to live off.
It’s common for people who receive a considerable pay increase to subconsciously experience lifestyle inflation and spend more money on things that they wouldn’t have done previously in their past.
Buying nicer things or going on more expensive vacations can affect how far your $80K salary goes in your family, and whilst you may think you’ll be earning more than ever before, you may not be if you’re spending more than you previously used to.
So let’s say, you earn $80K a year after taxes have been deducted, which will leave you with over $6.5K every month to play with.
The current average mortgage payment in the US is around $1,275, which when deducted from your paycheck will give you $5,225 a month.
Over $5,000 a month should be more than enough for an average four-person household in the US and can be spent or saved depending on the family’s circumstances.
Some may choose to spend a lot of it on leasing a lavish car or going on luxury vacations, whereas others may seek to live a more modest lifestyle and save their money for their children’s college education or their retirement.
Certain jobs will pay at least $80K due to the requirements and specifications of the role, so if you’re currently looking into a career that would earn you this kind of money, then the roles below are what can offer a salary of over $80K.
– Management Analyst
– Occupational Therapist
– Construction Manager
– Mechanical Engineer
– Financial Advisor
– Software Developer