Seeing posts saying an $80k salary “isn’t much” reminds me that some people live in a different world.
By - Inazumaryoku
I live in Portugal, to be more precise in Azores.
My salary is 800€/month and my girlfriend salary is 650€/month she is on the minium wage while as u can see I get a little more. We both together is 1450€/month. My rent is 300€, I spend around 180€-220€ in food a month, then I pay 20€ for electrecity, 5€ for water, 30€ internet + tv service that gives around 575€ a month in expenses.
The house I live at the moment is a 2 floor house with 3 bedroom and a huge space on the side to do whatever I want, the owner used to cultivate vegetables for example. He wants to sell it for 100.000€ which would give me a mortage of 230€/month which is cheaper than the rent. And the wide space on the side is enough to build another home there. So the plan is buying for 100.000€ then build another house on the side and put it both to rent for 400€ each. While they are paying themselves i still get a little bit extra on the side. If I won 80.000k a year in the place I live, I would probably be one of the richiest persons on my island
what are the Azores like, how does it feel being so far out in the Atlantic? How connected do you feel to mainland Portugal and what similarities/differences are there between you guys and them?
It's a nice question since a lot of people from Portugal mainland have a wrong idea about a few things.
First of all people from mainland think we have a strange accent because one of the 9 islands had french people as one of their first habitants so they have a kinda weird strong french accent while talking portuguese. But people think that all the 9 islands have that accent while is only the bigger one which is S.Miguel. The others one speak like some zones from the mainland.
The other thing is we dont have that much habitants, for example the island I live which is Faial has around 15.000 habitans, which isnt a lot. For an idea S.Miguel which has around 150.000 (not sure, didnt fact check) has more habitants than all the other 8 together. This may seem weird for a lot of people because here we had 1 highschool with around 1200 students and we knew each other, even if we didnt talk we knew who they were. To compensate we are 15 minutes away in a ferry boat from the island Pico, which has the tallest mountain of the whole Portugal (Mainland included) and the fact that is so near, some people in the mainland usually ask if we can go there swimming (which well one person did it once but it was a professional, and had assistance near in case something happens).
Some people also think we are a poor region which is not true, we are not "ancient" or something like that. In my island we dont have shopping malls because honestly 15.000 people are not enought to make it worthy but we have access to everything just not in a shopping mall format. We have a lot of rural zones, if you step away from the cities and villages you will see a lot of terrain with cows. We have beaches, the weather is unpredictable but fine aswell never gets toooo hot, but never gets tooo cold that because we are near the sea. You pretty much see sea in any place of the island. Check it up awesome place for vacations, we also have a lot of people come to live here after retirement. Nature is the key here. We have a saying that people who born here never cant leave forever because we cant deal with the fact of not being able to see the sea. Check it, internet has a lot of things we also won a few prizes like best vacations destination etc
Thanks for the in depth reply! As soon as I read your original comment I went and watched a tonne of videos on all of the islands and they are absolutely beautiful, honestly kind of like a Southern European with a drop of Caribbean vibe. I'd love to visit some day.
How is the quality of internet there? And how much do boats between islands usually cost? If you want to get from like Flores to São Miguel do you have to go via the other islands or are there boats that just take you where you want to go?
Internet its good enough. We can get up to 1 or 2gb in terms or speed. I have 200mb and never had a problem with downloads, ping in videogames etc. I usually download stuff at 40-70mb/s depending on where im downloading. But like I said I only have 200mb speed.
The second question, it depends from which island u depart. For example from Faial to Pico one way ticket is 3.6€ 15 min trip,from Faial to S.Jorge is 10€ around 1 hour and half trip. From Faial to S.Miguel is 50€ I think and the trip is like 10 hours with stops in other islands. From Flores to S.Miguel I don't know if is there trips to that, since Açores has 3 groups of islands and Flores is in one extreme and S.Miguel in another which I think any trip from Flores to S.Miguel would stop by some islands from the Central group, Faial, Pico, S.Jorge, Terceira and Graciosa. People also take planes when they dont feel like taking a 10 hour trip to s.miguel by boat. The price of on airplane ticket is 60-80€ and its half a hour trip. But for more information you can search for AtlanticoLine is the company responsable for the ferry trips here
One of my best friends wants to retire to your islands! :) Me I'm still looking forward to visiting! Love from Italy ❤️
Hey, I actually met a few people from Itally in a ERASMUS project while being in Spain and they all got fascinated with the islands and 2 of them even came to visit while staying in my house. Nice people to have a good time and have fun while exploring the islands !
fascinating slice of life. Also it's wild to think that rent isn't all that much more than food, like 50% more in your example. For me rent historically was around 5x the monthly price of food (US)
Well honestly I spend more in food than I needed. Otherwise with proper shopping i could get it to around 120€ tbh im just 24 and since i can afford a little bit more I just like to eat a few more expensive things
You're living in the Azores, you've already won at life. That's what all the 100Ks/year dudes are saving up for.
True like I said in other comment. It's really normal to see rich people come to live here after they get retired, from a lot of countries even tho most of them are from nordic countries
I'm ready to move there after your comment. Hahaha! It sounds beautiful and most importantly: affordable!
Ah! The Portuguese side of my family is from the Azores! We went back in 2016 when portugal won the euros and it was so fantastic. Best pineapples I’ve ever had! I really can’t wait to go back and eat food cooked from the heat of the earth again !
Don't even need to be million dollar homes. I have a house in the middle of nowhere with just over 300 acres. I tell that to a friend in NY and he thinks I'm a multi millionaire. But the house is only worth about 100k (maybe more with this crazy real estate market now) and the land is about 600-700 an acre. so like under $300,000 house and land together.
Take my house and plop it in NY and I wouldnt' be able to afford even the taxes on it to stay. Would have to sell straight off.
My mom lives on Long Island, NY on a quarter acre. Her taxes are $12,000 a year. I think the house values at about 400k
I love in the burbs outside of DC in a 700 SF condo, and mine are a measly $2,500 for comparison.
I inherited 50 acres and a 2200 sq ft house and pay $1200. But I was able to register the land as Greenbelt and pay taxes based on use (farmland, specifically grazing) and not market value.
I also own my current house on 1/2 acre near a city and pay that much for it. It all about the location.
*smiles in no tax in Australia for primary residence*
Yeah but we get stung with Stamp Duty when we buy & Capital Gains when we sell.
Not to mention the council rates every year.
$2,500 for 700 SF ($3.57 / SF) vs. $12,000 for 10,890 SF ($1.10 / SF). Not sure the $2,500 is the measly amount here.
You're comparing a SF condo to 1/4 acre lot.... You're missing the SF of the house on the lot or the lot of the condo if it has one.... Not exactly apples to apples.
people tend to forget just how big and how unpopulated the US really it. It is practically all empty space.
Yep. Most people don’t even think about it. But, one of the best retirement strategies is to make your money during your high earning years in a high inflation city/state and then relocate to a low inflation part of the country when you retire. I know moving to Florida or Arizona for retirement is cliche, but moving some place with cheaper land is a great way to stretch out your retirement income.
We are blessed In The US to have geographical and economic diversity.
The US is IMO a bad place to retire early. The cost of health insurance without employment is crazy high. A single emergency could destroy your savings.
Yes. About 5 years ago, 2 years before my ex husband retired from his job of 25 years and 3 weeks before the court was to finalize my divorce our home, everything we owned burned with out renters insurance. 20 years we had lived in a small towns historical district and our 3 cats died. The downstairs neighbor in the restaurant that it started in was killed. He had been cooking in the middle of the night. It got out of control. We lost everything. I had to start over on spousal support and apply for disability as Ive had lung disease for several years now. To replace what takes a lifetime to accumulate is unthinkable until you have to get out there and do it. I wouldnt wish this on anybody. Had we carried a small amount of insurance it would have helped so much but we didnt think at the time as average people renting that anything we had was that valuable. Starting over never occured to us. Every one should think of this. I wish I had.
I think my first apartment required it? We do ask our tenants now to get renters insurance.
We are definitely blessed with our wages. Being poor in the US is not the best lol, but if you do have a decent job you can make crazy money.
The idea of leaving the big city to go somewhere cheap is really doing a number on the East Coast of Canada right now. It's really the only area of the country that has lagged behind in economic development over the last few decades and now their housing is shooting up because people from Toronto are going there and dumping the piles of money they made on their tiny condos.
The pandemic exacerbated the issue, but people that have lived there their whole lives can no longer afford to live there. In the ultimate twist of fate, Alberta, which was booming for decades, is about the only place in the country with large metro areas where real estate isn't outpacing "inflation" by leaps and bounds.
I think a lot of first world countries have a huge difference in the cost of living/housing from place to place. I live in England and recently bought a house for £80k in a town in the North, but would be looking at paying around £500k for a similar property in London.
I'm from Mansfield but live in Bristol and yes the difference is amazing
I keep seeing people in the investing sub say you need 1 million or 2 million in savings to retire. I'm like what world do most of the people around have that kind of money. You make 30-40k a year and just barely getting by.
It's easy to save a million. Just keep your job and move back in with your parents and make them pay for literally every single thing you ever need or want for the next 10-20 years while you put all your dollars into a high-yield savings account. Duh!
(This is satire btw)
You joke, but in most parts of the world, living with your parents to save costs is very common/normal and not viewed as weird or pathetic. Honestly confused why it is viewed that way in the US, it makes a lot of sense
The US is probably the most individualistic country in the world, and the “pull yourself up by the bootstraps” cliche we hear about was and largely still is a real thing. You’re supposed to either go to college or find a career as soon as you graduate from high school so you can become your own person or something, which is obviously completely unrealistic but that’s the world we live in.
I agree with you that it should be considered normal, and I think popular opinion is starting to shift, especially with younger people, and especially since COVID
Yup the states sure are! My mom was already getting stuff for my first apartment “hope chest” when I was 14 yrs old for when I moved out after graduation
I live in a suburb of New York City and you could not afford to live in my neighborhood on $80,000. It’s crazy - my friends in Greece live on 700€ a month. Here you would be homeless if you made that.
Right? I’ve seen young people on Youtube vlogging who are just out of college with a waitress job and depending on tips alone getting a $2000 apartment. That’s a crazy way to live.
My wife and I live less than an hour from Tokyo, in a suburb with rivers and lakes surrounded by mountains. Our home is 2-bedroom and costs $460 a month. Our food and groceries cost us $60 a week. I remember earning about $1000 monthly and I was still able to take trips around Japan and invest.
Wow, $460 in rent is incredible. My partner and I are about to move and looking for places to rent, and even a one bedroom will be $1600+ CAD a month. Granted, our housing market is having quite the boom, but it is hard to pay as students. Perhaps we ought to move to Japan one day, it sounds like an amazing country!
Well if your work allows you to work remotely, you can definitely try staying in Japan with your salary.
Tax is quite low here I think, yet the services and the infrastructure is incredible. Japan knows how to be a modern civilized First World country. The best part is, there are no “Karens” here, quite the opposite. That alone is quite a merit.
The problem here is that you are comparing New York to rural Japan. If you were to live in Tokyo you would be paying the same crazy prices as NYC and people in NYC could move to small town USA and pay a comparable price to you in Japan. The cost of living in Japan vs the US is not very different.
PS - Japan is amazing. People should check it out.
Not really. USA is 5.66 on the Big Mac Index for last year, Japan is 3.74. It's just a guide but it suggests you can get quite a bit more for the same money on average everywhere in Japan than you can in the USA.
Small town USA has shite internet for the most part. That’s all I got
Shit internet, only store is usually a Walmart, schools tend to be awful, and the people who stick around tend to be a bit backwards.
I grew up in rural Wisconsin. Went to a tiny, terrible public school system. Rebel flags on houses and everything. Now I'm in a much nicer part of the state.
I'm in Chippewa Falls and lived in worse places. No way in hell am I going back to Chicago. Rural Wisconsin is a tough place to live in; mostly rednecks and bars.
That's not true but okay. An apartment in Saitama, a suburb of Tokyo is about $500-$600. Comparing an apartment in LA to an apartment in Tokyo is night and day. A studio, or a 1K comparatively, is under $1K even in Shinjuku. While in LA they starts at $1K. However, you can survive on $2000 a month in Tokyo if you live modestly. You can't survive on $2000 in LA.
I’ve lived in Middle Rural America on paltry funding (student life), trust me you don’t want to live in the places you can pay $500 or less in rent for a house. You better be accustomed to driving at least a half hour to go anywhere (gas costs cut into those rent savings), a handy repairman to fix whatever dilapidated structure you’re renting at that price, and be willing and able to fight off the rural methies. Anything decent or safe is going to cost you at least $700-1000, at least where I’m at. Rent is often much higher than a house payment—our property values are cheap enough at least. You can get in a crappy rural home for $50-80k, but nicer homes, larger lots, newer properties are going to command $100-200k easy.
Rent is like $400-600 in rural Pennsylvania for a 2 bedroom apartment or a nice trailer on an acre or so. Hard to find a decent job there though. I live in Southern Maryland now and rent is easily double that. I'm paying $1000 a month for a trailer on an acre here, and it's a good deal.
Op said they were less than 1 hour from Tokyo
No your wrong about that though. I live in one of the most rural parts of the country. Seventy miles from a small city with big box stores. We have zero fast food and a small market and 1 shitty supermarket. Houses out here are being snapped up, sight unseen sometimes, for $600k+ The highest paying job in town is $20/hr and rents for living spaces run $700-1400 /mo.. Its literally happening everywhere in the US. Oh, but we have very good internet.
I live in the either the first or second most expensive place in the world(depending on what study) to live in and we just surpassed New York in North America for least affordable. Vancouver, Toronto and Hamilton are all less affordable than New York or LA and it’s not a fun club to be in. I’m in Vancouver and you don’t even want to know what my rent is 😭
Damn... You must live in Vancouver or Toronto
You’d think, but even in Halifax it’s gotten so bad so quick that a one bedroom in the city bottoms out around $1400-1500
In *Nova Scotia*?! Jesus God.
OP’s numbers are a bit misleading since they are living in a rural area.
Rent in Tokyo city is quite high. A decent one bed room is around $1000, if you have a family and want to leave close to the center like shibuya, shinjuku or roppongi, expect at least $2500 - $3000
That's not bad. I live in the suburbs of a MCOL midwestern US city and you can barely find a decent 1BR apartment around here for less than $1000.
>suburb with rivers and lakes surrounded by mountains
This sound nice. What would I google to see pictures of this place?
My wife and I live near “Kawagoe” actually.
You can look it up on Google Images for an idea of our area.
That's a beautiful area (I viewed via Google Earth). Looks like a great place to live.
If Kawagoe is the Japanese definition of "rural", then it is a bit different than the US definition. In Japan, I detected many clear demarcations between "city"; "town"; and farms/green spaces. In the United States, those areas can become comingled due to unplanned development/growth.
It’s very cool to hear about living in Japan. The area where you live sounds amazing. To have such scenery in everyday life must be wonderful! I know that in certain places in the US, rent is like yours and life can be great! I was in Tokyo Narita airport twice on a layover and I am upset with myself that I just didn’t change my flights to see Tokyo a little bit. The Japanese people are so welcoming and kind. I have to say that even the airport sashimi and sushi and rice was amazing! I will try anything once and just let the chef feed me. When life resumes a little bit more back to normal I’d like to visit Japan.
I’ve a couple of expat friends who earn a “Western” salary and they’re quite rich here in Japan. For all the incredible service and infrastructure here, it can be surprising how it doesn’t cost much to make a very luxurious life here. Especially if you don’t have kids, which is why a lot of Japanese couple opt to be childless.
I guess that’s why there aren’t many deteriorating neighborhoods here, there aren’t any rundown districts, nor rampant poverty like in the other countries. You can see CEOs using public transportation, upper-class kids just commuting on their own alone inside trains, and it’s probably because there isn’t a huge gap between the lifestyles of lower or upper class people.
Wakayama here. I’m considering going back home to the states to get that western salary...
My husband is there for work right now and they are still heavily on lock down. They don’t have vaccinated numbers like the US or some other first world countries do. I am excited to visit too, so I hope they get it together soon.
Sounds like Westchester or long island. I live on LI and it is rough with 2 of us working and making around 50k each.
Can confirm. Westchester, Rockland, Bergen (north Jersey)- this whole tri-state area (including Connecticut) is insanely expensive. And houses where I'm living are being snatched up by city folk before they even really hit the market, thanks to COVID
Can't also confirm, raised and still living in Westchester.
I remember when I was 18 and trying to move out, on my budget I could just barely afford the lowest rent I could find in Yonkers, which was like $960 for a one bedroom, super small and in the worst areas.
These days? Even run down crack houses are more expensive then that. Fucking studios for like $1200, 1br for $1300+.
i mean... you can rent (small 1 bedroom) apartments here for as low as 300€ so unless you actually want like a big house or something 700-800 a month is not TOO bad.
Here? I assume you’re in Europe.
I would love to try living in Europe someday. I really don’t see the appeal of a US subdivision.
oh yea, im talking about Greece actually. Im still not buying an apartment of my own yet ive just looked a little around the area and have found some decent (probably for my low standards and inexperience) apartments
Europe here too, his 700-800 a month is my monthly payment for my house loan. Depending on where in Europe, it's definitely possible to live like a king as well :)
This is typical (am greek making close to 800€) with rent ~200€, but I'm single with no other obligations, living with my parents. It's still a shitty life if you ask me but I can at least get by, and I know this is a mindset similar with others at my work, difference is they have to feed their families too so most if not all work a second job. Everyone dreams of moving to Germany or Netherlands for similar work.
The entire economic system of the US is an absurd perversion of capitalism designed only to benefit the ultra wealthy, and suck all value from those that aren't.
How is high rent an example of that? In major cities with limited space and millions of people and lots of demand, high rent is just a byproduct of that.
Isn’t end-stage capitalism **so** much fun!
Yeah Greek salaries are a joke
$80 k would be life changing for me and I'm in the US!
The Reddit post that made me write this post said the exact thing as you.
He came from poverty and now he landed a $80k job, then he said “it’s not much for you guys, but this is huge for me.”
It got me thinking. Who are these “you guys” on Reddit that thinks “$80k isn’t much”?
I applied to a Goldman Sachs Analyst position - super prestigious opportunity. Although I didn't get it, I would've made 80k in chicago, but be expected to work literally 14-18 hours a day. Instead I got a local credit analyst job making 50k for no more than 40 hours a week and 3 weeks vacation. I'm budgeting for 20k savings a yr whereas I don't think I'd be able to save as much with GS. Obviously GS would offer 6 figure income in just a few years, but I'd rather take the slow and steady road to wealth.
I saw their appallingly low salary for analysts too for the number of hours worked. I was told by someone else that people do it because some get promoted and make tons of money or if you leave you make tons of money. But it sounded like a convenient lie to keep people chasing the carrot. Anyways I canceled on a last round interview because the job sounded miserable for the pay and I couldn't figure out why anyone would do it.
I went to a pretty good college that sends a lot of kids into investment banking and have a really good friend who got a job not at Goldman but a similar bank out of college. The hours are indeed brutal, he works till midnight and beyond most nights and on weekends as well. But while the salary might not seem worth it (110k I think?) he did get 50% of that as a singing bonus which is a huge deal and often left out of conversations around how much they make.
The goal for most of these analysts at firms like Goldman is to get into private equity in ~4 years and make beyond 200k in their 20s. Hours won’t get much better though, and that’s if you survive getting burnt out. I could never do it.
Tech work gets you similar wages, and with way fewer hours if you find a good team. I never ask my team to work evenings or weekends.
I interviewed at one of the B consulting firms when I was in college, but dropped out after a social event where I realized I did not fundamentally like these people.
I guess I'm one of those people. It's really interesting to me how different other people's perspectives on money are.
I grew up upper middle class, my parents bring home a salary comfortably in the 6-figure range, and I personally have over 20k in savings despite still being in college.
I had no idea how much better off I was until I got an apartment with my best friend. I could always afford to go out to eat or go to the movies while he was constantly budgeting to make sure he could pay rent. I buy groceries without even glancing at the final total before swiping my card, because as long as it's under $100 it's fine. When I get the tab for food, my friend keeps trying to pay me back because the amounts I don't worry about spending with friends feel like much bigger debts to him.
The fact that money is such a constant concern for my friends has honestly opened my eyes to just how bad the wealth inequality really is. Growing up, it felt like the level of comfort and lack of stress I had should be the norm, and the fact that it isn't pisses me off
Why can one person have more money than the total of what all the people I've met will spend in their lives? We need to tax the rich
I make $80k and live pretty comfortably on it. I own a huge house with a nice yard and have been to Europe twice on my own dime. My mortgage is the only loan bigger than $800 that I've ever taken out.
I often stress out about money simply because my perspective is warped. If my checking balance goes below $3k I lose sleep! I get upset any time groceries cost more than $80. Sometimes listening to my friends financial situations brings me back to a normal perspective for our generation in this area.
I think basically the problem is that $80k was an extremely life-changing income for me. I was able to save $25k in one year because of it! But after using a chunk of that money for a down payment and generally upgrading to a more middle class lifestyle, I'm constantly worried that I've bitten off more than I can chew. The numbers show that I'm still living within my means, but it's just so surreal that my mind can't process it. It's like the poverty still runs in my veins and my gut reaction to everything is still just "I can't afford that" even for things that I actually can comfortably afford now. I feel like I've just barely broken out of my social class and that I'm just constantly expecting to be put back in my place.
It's really strange having this perspective and seeing Reddit threads where people scold someone making $100k for thinking they can afford a house. I think people forget that not only does inflation vary by region, but everyone comes from a totally different financial situation.
I grew up pretty well off but my parents were frugal so I have that in my head. Like they would (and still do) complain about the price of things or talk about how they got a good deal on a tv. We were always buying off brand products because they were less expensive. They will walk father to not pay for parking. It’s good and bad to have that mind set. I try to be in the middle since my husband is the other way. His family didn’t grow up with a lot of money but his mom spent every dime they had on the kids and what they wanted (not what they needed). So he’s a big spender. He’s a “I’ll buy this now and figure out how to pay it off later”, where I am like “save for it and buy it for yourself later”.
>The fact that money is such a constant concern for my friends has honestly opened my eyes to just how bad the wealth inequality really is.
As a dude who's had to do that around his "rich" friends, thank you. It's really disheartening to be out with friends who say, "lets split the bill!" and proceed to get expensive menu items, while I'm sitting there looking for anything under $15.
I make 80k a year. Where I live this is listed as the median salary for employees. That being said, rent starts around $2500 for a one bedroom. I feel like by the time I pay my bills every month there's not much left.
Same here! We would be filthy rich with that amount of money and yet others who make that complain it's not enough.
I grew up pretty poor and remember seeing American movies where they have 'food fights'
Just blew my mind - here I am going to bed hungry most nights and there I see people treating food like it's some unimportant 'toy' - they have so much of it that they can just destroy and discard it.
Will never understand rich people
Every day at the end of lunch at my high school, the lunch ladies would dump out massive troughs of untouched pasta, pizza, fries, etc. straight into the trash (by school policy, obviously, the lunch ladies aren't at fault here). They fill *to the brim* two or three of [these types of garbage cans](https://s24512.pcdn.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/web1_garbage-bins-640x381.jpg), with enough food to feed 200 people ***every single day***. As a child who grew up on a Chinese peasant farm and cleaned my bowl up to the literal last grain of rice, watching them dump so much food in the trash every day was poison to my soul.
Then my school would do food fundraisers by asking students to donate extra canned and boxed foods for our food pantry, reminding us how so many kids just like us are going hungry in our own community. FUCK OFF. If you care about the hungry kids, how about you stop cooking twice the amount of food that the students actually eat and dumping it all out at the end of the day? Then by the end of the year, you'll have saved an entire warehouse of boxed pasta and frozen fries you could send the food pantry.
Excess lunch food is also an issue here in Japan. Which is why they have these programs where they measure how much leftovers are sent back to the lunch centers. Then they reduce the food to be cooked next time to fit the demand.
Also, excess lunch food in Japan I think are given to pig farms.
I’ve been to Japan a few times and I wish we had programs like that in the US. There’s so much wasted food here and I wish we could use it in some way. Even if it’s not very useful it would still be better than what we have now
And I'm sure they were letting kids who didn't have the money for lunch go hungry at the same time they were throwing away food.
To be honest, I never went to bed hungry and it makes me uncomfortable too. It's just a matter of respect.
Same. Food fights and those luxurious spreads for breakfast that they don’t even eat! On TV, every time an American family has dinner, it looks like a feast with actual steaks and pies, etc.
The average middle-class Jane/Joe in the US has a dishwasher, gigantic fridge, a remote-controlled garage, another fridge in said garage, washer and dryer, carpeted or hardwood floors, multiple rooms and bathrooms, can afford Starbucks every morning, Apple watch and iPhone, a man-cave, huge TV, etc.
I'm now in my 50's and I think I did pretty well for myself. No more going to bed hungry and I can afford to eat meat every day.
Still don't have a remote controlled garage door.
Don't believe everything you see on TV
Don’t forget the oversized petrol-guzzling SUV or “truck”. Per person.
I remember seeing a survey and only about 20% of the working Japanese people use a car. Everyone else commute to work.
You can measure the success of a country’s public transportation infrastructure when even a CEO commutes to work. The Shinkansen bullet train passes through my city train station and it’s so luxurious and fast. And most companies waive transpo fees, so you can ride it for free!
To clarify those people you described are also in massive amounts of credit card and car loan debt. They put on a front but are actually broke
Some are but not all, there are plenty that have that without all said debt
I'm not sure what's your definition of average. I'm in Canada and I guarantee you that's not average. I've only ever known someone with two fridges and the reason they had them is probably because they had their three adult kids (two huge guys and a girl) living with them. They lived in the bottom part of a duplex and rented the top part. Also hardwood floors are for the rich or for older properties, the rest of us have laminate. 🤷🏻♀️
Two fridges are kind of common in the Midwest in my experience. Usually the second fridge is ancient and was your old fridge before you got a new one or is a stand alone fridge or freezer. Sometimes it's needed because there are a lot of kids or because grocery stores are a far drive so when people go they stock up.
For example my grandparents have a standing freezer because they buy 4H animals (kids raise farm animals to learn farm skills and then sell them at the country fair) and freeze all the meat to have year round. You need a lot of space when you buy a whole pig/cow/sheep.
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I have never once witnesses an actual food fight. It's mostly a movie trope.
Reminds me of [Daisies](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daisies_\(film\)), a Cold War movie from Czechoslovakia. The whole movie is this bizarre surreal nihilistic thing with no plot or character development - just two girls going around wasting food. Then the ending rolled about how many people starved under Soviet occupation. Surprising it didn't get totally censored and destroyed.
I just accepted my first job outside of college to teach at an elementary school. $35,000 a year. Found a nice apartment a mile away from my school, but I’ll end up spending 1/3 of my income on rent alone. Rent, parking, internet, phone.. Basically spending my whole paycheck every other week on living expenses. Not to mention my college loan debt too..
There’s a post here saying he’s still in college but he already has $20k in savings. Such a gap between people in the US is sad.
I earn 36.000 EUR per year,wife too, in Germany and can afford a house, 2 cars, kid etc. It all depends where you living. Sure, we are 20km out of next bigger city.... next shopping is 4km away, but at least it's quiet and affordable.
I make $39k a year and I saved $5,000 in about 3 months. I'm a single person (dating someone) in a low CoL area and I live below my means. The American Way is to live right at your means, if not slightly above by relying on credit and loans. At the moment, I could live fairly comfortably for 4 months if my job went sideways, at $1,200/mo for my total budget ($425 rent, $100 phone bill, $125 for internet/electric, $400 food, the rest for fun). A lot of people, even in my area, pay that in rent alone, though.
Just paid off my student loans. Fuck debt
1/3 of your income on rent is pretty average really, at least here in the UK it is. I spend about 1/2 of mine on rent+bills
Spending 40% of my income on rent alone here. It's a 42m² / 450ft² 1.5 room apartment. So that's one living room and half a bedroom. Rent in my city is an absolute joke. This apartment is a steal and its probably only so cheap because its right next to the highway. But hey, I guess I'll deal with the constant 8 lanes full of cars if that means I don't have to live in an apartment half the size but the same price.
I think the perspective on Reddit is really skewed due to the high amount of STEM workers who have salaried jobs, often in coastal cities.
The median Canadian salary was only $27 000 CAD last time I checked, which is less than $20 000 USD/year.
I feel extremely lucky to have the money I do, and I take home $38 000/year (with a master's degree). However, the median cost of a 1-bedroom apartment in my city of 400 000 people is already over $1500/month before utilities. I do not have a car, mainly due to not wanting to endanger my savings with potential repair bills, but also, the cost of monthly insurance, gas, and maintenance is too high for me to want to pay for, never mind the cost of the car itself (which I would only ever want to buy outright, used, for more than one reason).
It seems like salaries are lower in Canada than the US, even in coastal cities, but we do okay because we have a lot of socialised public services, like healthcare, but also workplace protections and compensation for workplace injuries, good employment insurance, (seemingly) better online access to government services like EI and taxes, and so on.
So overall, I feel like an American family needs to take home a lot more money each year to achieve the same quality of life as a Canadian family.
Public transportation, too. That cuts down on the need for cars, which are a huge money sink.
You haven't checked in a while. The median Canadian salary is closer to [37kcad](https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/t1/tbl1/en/tv.action?pid=1110023901) which is around 30kusd, and the median household income is ~70kcad.In comparison the median us income is 35k.
In my experience Canada pays it's low wage workers more (minimum wage is higher, but also there seem to be fewer jobs that only pay minimum, at least before the pandemic revolutions). I work for an American company in Canada and my income is around 100kcad,I'm very fortunate, but my coworkers in the states are making around 30k more than me. I'm happy with the money I make though, like you said I prefer the benefits of living in Canada. I hate driving, and while Canada has a lot to improve on with public transit and city design at least it's feasible to live without a car.
Median personal income in the US is only $36k (50% of Americans make less that $36k).
$80k vs $20k is pretty different, but $36k vs $20k isn't as large of a gap
Yeah, it's 2 times bigger.
That's a large gap
I can't disagree because what you're saying is objectively true, but I think that gap is misleading and it's a good argument for progressive taxes.
If you NEED 20k to get by (for food, rent, transport to work, etc, with nothing left over) then a person making 35k has 15 times as much expendable income as a person making 21k, which is an enormous boon for that person. Meanwhile, the jump from 35k to 80k is 4 times the expendable income.
I've had jobs that pay roughly these amounts during my adult life in the last 15 years, and the jump from 20k to 35k was responsible for alleviating so much more stress and difficulty in my life than the climb from 35k to 80k, and I think it's probably the main reason I support extremely progressive taxes and drastic increases to the minimum wage.
The median family income in Canada is 80k with an average individual income of 51k
The median after-tax income of Canadian families and unattached individuals was $62,900 in 2019, up 0.5%, which was not a statistically significant change over 2018.
For non-senior families, where the highest-income earner was under 65 years of age, the median after-tax income was $93,800 in 2019. Couples with children's median after-tax income was $105,500, while the median after-tax income of female lone parent families was $52,500.
Sorry, I had to check - 27 just doesnt make any sense. half of all Canadians would be making less than minimum wage, or working less than full time for that to be true
Our bus system certainly makes things easier. If you want a car with little to no maintenance, get a Toyota Camry. Those things will outlive you, your children, and your grandchildren.
It’s actually around 65k, not 27k. Huge difference
Hmm. I'm in America and I would consider that a really great living.
Certainly it is - but not really on the coasts. Middle America, parts of the south, etc, you would do great with $80,000
if u earn 80k usd a year in sweden you're doing better than great, how fucking expensive is the US?
In Sweden you have the benifit of great social security, therefor you can live peacefully with less than 80k and still know that you won’t go broke if you get sick.
Your eastern neighbour checking in to say hi
80k a year is pretty damn good, not much you can’t get with that if you live outside the expensive bits of Helsinki and you don’t dump your paycheck into cars and/or boats etc.
A lot of this thread is exaggerating. $80k will do you well in most cities if you're single with no kids. It might be tight in Manhattan or SF but almost anywhere else you'd be fine. Not wealthy, but certainly able to have an apartment, good food, and afford a few luxuries.
Now if you have debts, medical problems, a family to support, etc, you might run into issues, but overall $80k is pretty good assuming you're not spending frivolously.
Feel like part of this is also job market. I’m a CS grad with 3 years experience. 65 is bare minimum for CS starting. If I do leetcode I can break 100k out of college. But 60k for a lot of other jobs is great. All about what the vast majority can do. If that makes sense.
That is about the median *household* income in the US.
[The national median family income for the United States for FY 2021 is $79,900, an increase over the national median family income in FY 2020 of $78,500.](https://www.huduser.gov/portal/datasets/il/il21/Medians2021.pdf)
Plenty of families live on less. The median house price is just above $400k.
ITT: people in NYC and SF who like to say "what about NYC and SF? You'd be eating gruel and living under a tarp here!"
It's like comparing the cost of living in Bulgaria to London. That median amount of money would buy you a four bedroom house with a pool in Oklahoma.
I live in Alabama and $80k would be considered middle class or upper middle class here. A family of five is doing good for themselves on 80k and a single person making 80k is doing fantastic, most single people (and tbh most families) live on about 15-35k a year here.
Honestly me too. Like, with my family of four, my parents made $55k combined this past year, which is the most they’ve ever made, and I honestly am fine with my lifestyle, I also live in a big city
I make about 50k before tax and while technically being middle class I actually struggle to save money becauseof COL and major expenses. Anytime I do have a bit saved up something happens where I have to spend a lot right then. For example recently I had to get some imaging done that I'd been putting off for a few months and after rent for this month I now have to survive on about $20 until next Thursday. I have no major bills before then and I can eat cup noodles for a week so I'll be fine, but it's always stressful when it happens.
It’s a great salary to have in the US, just not in places like Los Angeles or New York.
You need to be making over 6 figures in those cities to ever own a home.
Rent* a home
Having low 6 figures in those area won’t ever get u a house in the metropolitan area now lol I checked online mortgage rate before & u would need like $7k a month to pay the house off in like 30 yrs? I forgot cuz it was just ridiculous lol like no
Really depends on the area, the differences in cost of living are insane. I barely make 12k a year and I'm not an American, but I have quite a few American friends and acquaintances. Some of them make as little as me and lead normal lives, some of them make orders of magnitude more, but can't really afford a better lifestyle than me.
It's weird. I try to avoid dwelling on it and comparing things like that. It is how it is, wondering what could you do with such an insane amount of cash in your own situation ignores a lot of things that just doesn't apply and doesn't really have any chance of making you feel better about anything.
I always break it down in terms of hourly pay. Will I work for X hours to have this thing I am going to buy? If the answer is yes then I will go ahead with the purchase.
Depends on the item. Recently spent $5k on a new heater
I would work for 1-5 month in order to not freeze to death... Pretty good trade
Haha I just save money
Lifestyle creep is real. I'm not saying you shouldn't have small treats in your life but you have to find its limit financially.
>makes 1000/month payments
What the fuck. Either she's driving a ridiculously expensive car or got absolutely reamed on her interest rate. I just bought a $17k vehicle and pay $300/mo.
After having housekeeping for a while though, that's the only thing on your list that I will now insist is totally worth it for the QoL upgrade. I lived with 2 roommates and we split bi-weekly housekeeping and it was AMAZING. So much time saved and fights avoided for like $40/mo. Imagine never cleaning your toilets or dusting or vacuuming again.
But as a side note, don't forget that she probably 'only' nets like $75k, assuming she makes ~$120k, leaving her with basically $15k for all of those impulse expenses. She's honestly probably just massively in debt from living above her means. Making $120k in large cities does not make you rich and is already taxed pretty heavily relatively. When people say tax the rich, they're talking people making $5mil+/year plus untaxed stock options.
Buying a fucking airplane on a 200k salary??? This friend is gonna end up very unhappy.
From some quick googling, you can buy a used Cessna 172 for ≈ $100-200k, that's obviously not cheap but the initial purchase isn't a completely insane goal for someone making $200k/year, if it's a priority for them.
Granted, it sounds like this person has other spending/saving issues so take it with a grain of salt.
> $100-200k... isn't a completely insane goal for someone making $200k/year
Yes, it is. Even if you make $200k in the US, depending on the state you're probably taking home $130k after taxes. Paying an entire year's take-home pay for a car would be crazy, but at least most people *need* cars to commute. Spending it on an airplane is the definition of financial lunacy. Especially considering that a plane is not a one-time cost. It's gonna bleed you for insurance, fuel, and hangar fees. Since we know she doesn't save any money, she'll need to finance it, so there's also interest. This all can easily tack on [$20,000 a year](https://www.investopedia.com/articles/wealth-management/121415/economics-owning-small-plane.asp) just for upkeep. And this all assumes that she's a licensed pilot, and doesn't need to hire one.
I'm not suggesting it's rational to get a job making $200k, and immediately run out to buy a $100k plane on a whim. But if it's a serious life goal for someone and they make other sacrifices to save and plan for it over time, it's not that crazy - particularly if they have a partner with a second income.
Small used planes aren't that expensive. Guy I work with that's sub-100K has a couple at any given time. He just bought one for like 14K a few months ago, did some work and flipped it for 18K. I get where you're coning from though, I've always wanted to get a pilot license but even that's too rich for my blood.
You are right, even if she got an even higher job, she would be spending it all because thats her money habits and its hard for people to quit that.
I guarantee you that’s not how all rich people live. Being rich stems from the ability of keeping/growing money instead of spending it.
She is what I call “momentary rich” the second that salary doesn’t come, she’s broke.
Some people try to out earn their stupidity. Eventually it will catch up to them and she will be broke and never able to retire
Under $200k isn't really "rich" in the grand scheme of things. When people talk about raising taxes on the wealthy, someone like that wouldn't even be affected.
Can I ask what line of work you both are on?
International companies are *amazing* for poor country folks. I'm currently living in developing country, working for a branch of company based in rich country. I'm earning their wages in country where "comfortable living wage" is one third of that. And I know they pay me, a high-experience specialist, what they would pay a trainee in their country, yet the difference in both currency value and costs of living puts me in top 20% earners in my country.
In a lot of the US 80000 would be an amazing salary.
In San Francisco $117k is consider "low income" while $73k is "very low income".
80k USD salary is nothing if you live in the centre of big cities like london or new york, you literally will live month to month
Its just inflation/cost of living.
The value of 1$, even if you keep the exact same dollar, changes from place to place
This is why a lot of people from third world countries are willing to work in terrible conditions for piss-poor pay. Because they send that money back home, which is a LOT of money.
Go work as a janitor in say, berlin. Split an apartment with like 6 other people and live off basic needs only for a year. Then after that year, go back home. The money you saved up will be worth a LOT.
That’s what my wife and I are doing now.
We’re earning around the amount I posted here ($80k) and we’re living a luxurious life here in Japan. We are saving as much as we can so we can fly back to our home country and retire there, to live a luxurious life without working ever again.
What do my you and your wife do? Also where is home?
Dawg I live in the US and I dreeeeam of making 80,000 a year!
My husband and I are both teachers in Brisbane, Australia. We earn enough to own (mortgage) a 3 bedroom house with a yard 15km from the CBD, own 2 cars (both purchased new in the last 5 years) and send our son to private school. And we still eat out and travel for holidays regularly. I think (hope) we know how lucky we are...
Are you implying you guys make a lot more or a lot less than the 80k from OP?
Yeah that's really just not true. $80k is a very good salary (upper middle class) in most of the US unless you're in like the Bay Area or NYC. People that live there have a very skewed perspective about what a good salary is, and they seem to be very vocal on reddit about it. The US is absolutely huge and those are just tiny regions compared to the rest of the country. Those places are the exception, not the rule.
It’s a combination of factors.
1. Our housing is more expensive, as already discussed. Each home is also taxed for its value and where it is based and additional taxes are collected for the school district in which it resides. Just those taxes can easily be above 5,000 a year in my state.
2. Most areas require a car and it can be difficult to even share a car with a spouse, so most people each have to have their own car. Commuting outside of your town is common. I commute 45 miles each way for work. Functional mass transit is unavailable outside of large cities.
3. Our healthcare premiums can be very high. I have excellent insurance with low premiums and for a family of three we still pay hundreds a month. I’m unsure of taxes in Japan, but the tax rate on income of 80,000 here is 21,000 (including state required disability funds) So that 80,000 shrinks a lot before it gets to our pockets.
Federal Income Tax
State Income Tax
SDI (State Disability Insurance)
FLI (Family Leave Insurance)
4. Student loans are super commonly used and it isn’t unusual for someone to leave a four year degree program owing at least 50,000. Tack on more for grad school or a private in grad degree.
5. Public schools really vary in quality. To live in a good school district (in populated areas) you must buy a more expensive home to live in the boundaries of that good district. So people tend to overbuy homes to get into a good district or feel they must pay for a private school.
6. Childcare before age 5. To survive, most families need both parents working. Just for my one child to go to daycare is 1200.00 monthly. There are home daycare that are cheaper and much nicer daycare that’s cost a ton more. The average family has 2 children, so for those years that’s an big additional expense.
6. Extended family living together pooling resources isn’t common.
7. Societal pressure of have the newest and best of everything, though I’m sure that’s felt across the globe.
8. Saving for retirement. Many companies offer very little support for retirement. We have to our money aside for years to hope to live ok after 67.
These are just some factors as how 80,000 doesn’t go far. My family is well above that number and we def. can’t afford a maid or a mansion. Avoiding Lifestyle creep, living rural when possible and and making smart financial choices can mitigate some of these issues, but 80,000 doesn’t make us rich for sure.
My cousin works for a large company in Washington as a software developer, and I do it in Eastern-Europe. You couldn't even possibly imagine how much more he makes for pretty much the same job (he is more experienced than me though but not a manager or anything), and I am already pretty well off where I live.
I also live in Japan, but I’m from the US. I’d say the cost of living here vs where I used to live is basically identical. I also can’t really fathom how $80,000 is “not enough”. I make 26k on my teacher salary, and my basic needs are all met. $80k sounds like an absolute dream come true.
Can’t wait to see people like
“If you make less than 200k please don’t talk to me”
Who haven’t had a full time job yet.
Honestly everybody obsessed about pay, but liking your job is much more important IMO.
There's another often-overlooked aspect about how even that absolute amount is very different to people in different circumstances.
When I was young and single, I got by just fine on a fraction of that, and even saved up enough to take a gap year between jobs. I didn't live in the best neighborhood, but it didn't matter when it was just me.
But to support an entire family is another thing entirely. You need a multiple of the money you needed for yourself as a single person. So you move to a higher cost of living area for more pay, get a family to support, and that $80k that would've made you rich before now just barely gets you by paycheck-to-paycheck. Any unexpected expense blows away whatever little savings you have. And the rent increases almost always outpace the raises. You're making more money, but your standard of living is going down.
That's hard to explain. Because everyone's thinking in terms of their own experience. Younger me, seeing what I am making now, would've thought it amazing and would think that I must be incredibly wealthy. But current me is thinking it's ok enough for now, but if I ever want to retire, I'm going to need more.
That's not different people in different countries. That's one person, in one country, but in different circumstances.
Yeah, don't let this skew your thinking of salary and how hard it is to afford to live here.
In most places in the Southeast US, $80,000 puts you in one of the upper tiers of what people in most areas there earn.
Those places in the US where people pay $3000/mo for an apartment have a lot of homeless people and people running to other states now that the pandemic has pushed working remotely more into normality than ever before. Those are also really the only people who think $80,000 isn't much, because insane cost of living where they are makes that actually true.
You can't forget of your apartment is 3k a month, that means everything else is expensive also. Dropping $50 on lunch is just normal if your in a city with rent line that, and you could get a pretty nice dinner for that price somewhere else.
Ouch. My wife and I went to a small fancy Italian bistro for our anniversary here in Japan. Our 5-course dinner was just $20 a person.
Pretty nice dinner for 4, even.
$3,000 around here is the house payment, health insurance, car insurance/gasoline, with the rest going to water, utilities, groceries, cable/phone/internet bill.
And most people don't save. There's always new clothes to try, new junk food to eat, and whatever else.
Well said! In Spain, normal working family of two, no children and working a medium of 40H a week, we make COMBINED 20k a year, just a year. And 80k plus salary is not even for some politicians. My MIL, MD and very specific medicine branch makes 60k maybe after taxes. So yeah, those numbers are a whole different world
Crazy right? And Spain isn’t a third world developing country!
I see my friends in the US talking about how rent is like $2k and I'm over here like "boy that's more than my net monthly income"? Just goes to show how expensive the area I grew up in was, I suppose
Right?? I take home just under $30,000 a year, and I feel very well off. I can't even imagine how it'd be to make over twice as much as I do now.
Yo, I live in America and was born in America. If someone gave me a job that paid 80K a year I'd be having a heart attack from joy and elation.
Sadly in today's economy 80K isn't much. Costs are way too high. But I'd rather have 80K instead of the 30K my wife and I are able to earn.
In other countries my 30K would let me live like a king. Literally but in America I'm a poor slave.
It is so crazy. When I lived in the UK my sister and I rented a really decent 3 bedroom house for £600 per month. Now I live in the Bay Area and have to live with my parents whose mortgage is $5k a month in a 4 bed house, and I’m struggling to get a studio/1 bed apartment for less than $2k a month...
Edit: my salary in the UK was £18k and I was able to live comfortably. Here I’m earning about $24k (while studying part time) and that’s not even enough even though I don’t pay rent lol.
I noticed the most noticeable way to see if you're privileged compared to the rest of the world is to think about going out to eat. If eating out at a restaurant or McDonalds is a necessity for you, or at least a common thing to do a few times a week, you live in a privileged society. For most people, eating out is a luxury that is only available for extremely special occasions, but those from privileged societies can't even imagine living a life without it and cooking every meal you eat.
I live in Spain. In between my partner and I we make around 1200 euros, but we live well. We can travel sometimes, our rent is 260€, and groceries are about 100-120 every two weeks. It's weird to me to see people complaining about making 3000 a month, I'd be rich with that.
Hey im from Spain too. But I live in Norway so i know both perspectives. I do earn 3000euros. But I pay 1000€ rent and groceries skyrocket to 500€ every two weeks. I save because I'm single with no children. Eating out in Norway is not less than 50€ :)
I’m from the western United States. I use to strive to make 100k but with our uptick economy that will be considered middle class here soon. Crazy how money changes with time.
Yeah, a salary range holds much different value depending on where in the world you are. In Northern America, esp in large coastal cities (NYC, SF, LA) and in this current economy, anything below $100k is still difficult to live on. It may be doable if you are single but if partnered or with family, it can be hard.
This also reminds me of that horribly depressing YouTube video of those people who live in those community arcade/cyber cafe type places in Japan. It’s only like a 6x6 room and they pay a few dollars per day in rent. (It’s really not made for people to live there but they do)
I saw a survey done by the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare and there were about 5,000 of those jobless people you mentioned living in cyber-cafes in Tokyo, which has a population of 40 million.
I also live in a suburb of the NYC metropolitan area (Long Island). A one-bedroom/one bathroom apartment costs $2650/month and a 2-bedroom/1 bathroom apartment is $3450/month. I ended up buying a fixer-upper house with a mortgage of $2900/month because it has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and a yard. The joke of it is? More than half of that payment ($1600) is property/school taxes. I work 2 jobs in order to just barely pay it, and my partner contributes labor and maintenance services for free. An article in our local newspaper last winter estimated that 49% of people under 40 will leave before they turn 40. This area has a reputation for being wealthy, but what I wouldn’t give to make $80k, even working two jobs...sheesh
I earn 168k per year but still cannot afford a house ...because where I live house cost million dollars starting
Love this post. So often I see these other posts and feel confused about the, to me, crazy high incomes being referred to as minimal, average, or 'barely enough', while over here I am making a fraction of said income and living very comfortably. It's easy to forget that a lot of reddit users are from the US and the cost of living there is often higher than the average salary in other countries! It's very interesting reading responses and comparisons from all over the world.
Also the fallacy of random white guys on reddit thinking they're edgy or smarter than everyone else.
The average American makes like 30k and 80k jobs are not 'common'. I see these comments occasionally on here and they're always done with malice or the intent to demean someone else, usually over a critique of capitalism. Your average American is living in poverty because America is a failed state. Insecure manchildren think if they spread propaganda on reddit enough it will somehow not make that the reality, because they're scared of admitting that the cushioned imperial life their parents had is not a thing anymore. The US ruling class stopped giving even some of the spoils to your average citizen in the 70s and since then it has been a pretty steady liquidation of the masses. Americans are still better off than most of the world, but 80k is definitely not your average income. It's pretty well off for almost all industry sectors.
‘With a Dyson vacuum’- damn that puts things in perspective..
The medium household income for my county is $40,000. So a couple who each make $20,000 a year is middle class in my town. $80,000 would mean you’re upper middle class, and is something I aspire towards. Six figures would mean you’re certifiably rich.
Same here in Japan.
My wife and I actually earn a little bit more than $80,000 a year and it allows us a 2-bedroom home, luxuries and gadgets galore, yearly trips to Europe, investments in mutual funds and stocks, plus we’re currently paying for 3 properties back in my home country. Not to mention we’re still able to have retirement savings on top of that.
To think that Japan is a proper 1st World country second to the US with a really efficient and incredibly convenient quality of life for the average citizen.
Math doesn't add up with that last statement.
If I made 100k a year, it would take me ten years to make a million dollars. I still wouldn't be a millionaire, because I have to spend money on things like food, regardless of where I live.
If my wife and I both made 100k a year, it would only take 5 years to make a million dollars... But we still wouldn't be millionaires, because, again, food, housing, taxes, etc.
I promise you that no one making 80 grand a year has a few maids and a driver, regardless of where they live. Even at 2 bucks an hour, you're talking about $64/day * 5days/week * 52 weeks = $16,640 a year with four employees. That's almost a fifth of 80,000; that hypothetical person would be spending 20% of their income on services. I looked up how much a [mansion costs in Nigeria](https://www.jamesedition.com/real_estate/lagos-nigeria/ultra-luxurious-5-bedroom-terrace-with-2-bedroom-bq-and-breath-taking-views-11013715). Yes, it's a lot cheaper than you'd find if you were looking in, say, Northern Virginia in the US, but it's still several thousand dollars a month in mortgage payments. Let's set it at (https://i.imgur.com/lraEPDM.png), assuming you put down 20% when you bought it.
The yearly mortgage cost of a 5 bedroom mansion in a random country in Africa is, then, *$90,000*. So, with maids, a driver, and a mansion, you're already at a minimum of about $106,000 required, and that's before you even start looking at food, transportation (where is the car for the driver?), taxes, healthcare, entertainment, and the Dyson vacuum.
That said, it's still plenty of money unless you live in a major metropolitan area in western Europe, Japan, or the US. Metro areas in these regions of the world have inordinately high costs of living, and I'm not exaggerating when I say that 80k is not enough to live in, for example, San Francisco as a single income, married household.
But seriously, $80,000 is not a lot of money for a family to live on, and there are families, even in the US, that are forced to live on much, much less.
The rich of the world are supremely screwing over the not rich, and I'm including basically anyone who makes less than a few hundred thousand dollars in that second group. Wages in places like the US have stagnated for decades, and were being fed the lie that whatever we get is good enough, while people who were born into money made using the backs of literal slaves get to affect monetary policy the world over.
The reason people say "$80k isn't a lot" is because there are people who could spend 80k a day for the rest of their lives and still have billions left when they died, and they use that money to spread the gap between the poor and the wealthy.
Anyway,i know this isn't the sub for that. I mostly just wanted to do some math. ;)
I lived in Spain for a bit and coming from Los Angeles it was a very humbling experience.
South Korea here: I do 60hrs/week as standard and get an equivalent of 3000 a month (my pay is slightly above minimum wage). If double overtime kicks in, I've done up to 80 hrs/week for 4500 per month. This is construction work so it's taxing on the body after a while
Even 40k seems like something I'll.never achieve.
80k is a whole lot, I live in Europe in a rich country and I make like 5400€ a year because they pay students like shit.
My dad makes around 80k a year and he drives sports cars and is considered upper middle-class so how is 80k not much???
It's a lot.