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Is 21k a Year a Bad Salary?

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    I ask this because I recently got into a debate with my mum and her friend over what is a good amount of money (they live in decent sized houses and can afford summer holidays and skiing each year so earn a fair bit).

    I thought that 21K per year would be a decent salary and you could live of it without much trouble (all this is assuming you are single and no kids). They said that it was a bad salary and that if I was earning only that then I would be stuggling consantly will paying for essentials and would be skipping meals and having cold water because I couldn't afford it all.

    I am really confused now, I have no experiance of anything like this as I still live at home, but satistics show so many people live of that much or less so it can't be that bad can it? Are they right, is 21k a bad salary to have?
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    It really depends on the circumstances and your lifestyle. Do you have to pay rent? Do you have children? etc.

    For a typical 20 year old living at home paying a small amount of board. 21k would allow you a few luxuries and you could live comfortable.

    For a 30 year old starting to settle down and wanting to get on the property ladder/Have prospects then I don't think 21k will suffice (unless two people are earning)
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    Depends where you live of course, what your background is (educational etc.) and the chances of career progression.

    If you live in an area outside of London 21k can go quite far and would be pretty good, especially at a young age. Also, you may find that 21K grows as you get promoted etc and if you have no one who is financially dependent on you its not a bad salary, especially for a youngster.
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    21k a year is 1.4k a month after tax. Say you pay 400 a month for rent, 100 for all bills and mandatory expenditures, 75 a week for food and entertainment...that leaves 600 a month left for anything else. Say for example you have a car then minus another 200 or so, thats still 400 left a month. Over a year that almost 5k saved, with which you can do whatever, holidays, etc

    Edit: 400 for a shared house, or a single place but not overly extravagant.
    Or say 600 for rent, leaving you 200 a month, which is still 2.4k saved in a year
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    I live 'up north' and earn 22 grand a year, I run my 3 bed semi and raise my daughter, have sky, nice car and could prob go on holiday once a year if I had the inclination. Would imagine you wouldn't be able to do as much 'down saufth' tho.
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    (Original post by james22)
    I ask this because I recently got into a debate with my mum and her friend over what is a good amount of money (they live in decent sized houses and can afford summer holidays and skiing each year so earn a fair bit).

    I thought that 21K per year would be a decent salary and you could live of it without much trouble (all this is assuming you are single and no kids). They said that it was a bad salary and that if I was earning only that then I would be stuggling consantly will paying for essentials and would be skipping meals and having cold water because I couldn't afford it all.

    I am really confused now, I have no experiance of anything like this as I still live at home, but satistics show so many people live of that much or less so it can't be that bad can it? Are they right, is 21k a bad salary to have?
    They probably have a very different view on what 'essentials' consist of. There are families on 21k a year, a singe person on 21k definitely won't go hungry!
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    With 21k and no children you can lead a very comfortable lifestyle, but it depends where you live. Up North you will do just fine as long as you manage your money appropriately; you definitely won't be struggling to pay the basic utility bills unless you piddle your money away as soon as it goes into your bank account, your mum is exaggerating.
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    At our age, definitely not. If you were on £21k when you're middle aged, and you had a wife and children to support, then it's not that great (although I wouldn't say it was terrible, as the average salary is something like £24k).
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    its a little below averege but its by no means bad, if you were trying to support a family, pay the mortgage and other bills from it then its probably not to good but for someone whos young its not something to turn your nose up at, although that being said i wouldnt argue with more money
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    I think everyone else has pretty much covered it...

    But 21k for someone just starting work and living at home, it is a decent income.

    But if you are older ie with a family or looking to settle down, 21k is a low income.
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    (Original post by james22)
    I ask this because I recently got into a debate with my mum and her friend over what is a good amount of money (they live in decent sized houses and can afford summer holidays and skiing each year so earn a fair bit).
    Location is important - but outside the South East 21k is a very decent salary for a young single person. Certainly even in London your supply of hot water won't be in doubt.

    Sounds like your mum and her friend have lost connection with the real world a little bit.
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    21K bad salary? Depends on what the job title is. If you are a cleaner, 21K is pretty decent. If you are a lawyer and earning 21K....wtf did you do wrong?!
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    It'd go quite a way over here in Devon as you could rent a decent(ish) flat and have a decent car
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    (Original post by james22)
    They said that it was a bad salary and that if I was earning only that then I would be stuggling consantly will paying for essentials and would be skipping meals and having cold water because I couldn't afford it all.
    :rofl:

    I live by myself and can afford hot water and don't skip meals.
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    Thanks for the replies guys, good to see I'm not going insane.
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    (Original post by malehappy)
    If you're not paying any bills then brilliant, you wont starve, but what are you doing in a £21,000 job. they were paying that sort of money 10years ago. The currency has suffered massive inflation, and the devaluation in our pound.

    You should be paid £28,560, so by living at home, if you are, you're being saved rent & expenses of £7,560.

    http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/b...nged-1900.html

    try and get a better job, or go self employed after saving up some money. Don't worry too much about luxuries like a car / sky and stuff, study a little bit more, and do more than the next person.

    You're mum and her friend are wise, and sound like they are good with money, and are probably hinting that the money that you are on is not enough to support a family / relationship.

    The economy sucks at the moment, and its not your fault.
    Erm, what? Have you seen some of the salaries companies are offering? Surely it depends on the sector you work in as well and your age. Where did you get £28,560 from? :confused: It doesn't always matter if you study harder than the next person. I have a first, 2 awards and previous experience in my industry.
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    I earn 19k, live by myself, rent a 2 bed flat, am funding a masters course, have sky tv and an iPhone on contract and still have plenty of money left for food and going out. For a while I was also supporting a very lazy (now ex) boyfriend too.

    I think you could live quite comfortably on 21k with a reasonable budget. Obviously location is a huge factor (I live in Devon).

    Hope this helps


    This was posted from The Student Room's iPhone/iPad App
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    (Original post by malehappy)
    If you're not paying any bills then brilliant, you wont starve, but what are you doing in a £21,000 job. they were paying that sort of money 10years ago.
    I don't get this response. Who were paying "that sort of money" 10 years ago? It absolutely depends on your career.
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    My parents earn less than that between them and we still manage to live perfectly fine, afford holidays, run 2 cars, have a big TV etc. We do buy the supermarket own brands of things and buy clothes from eBay or Primark etc but we just see that as being sensible and not paying more when you can get the equivalent for less.

    My guess is that they don't shop around when making purchases, because they feel they have enough money to not have to and/or they feel if an item is cheaper then it can't be just as good. If you tried to live that form of comfortable lifestyle then £21k wouldn't be enough. However, if you are sensible and shop around for big purchases, consider eBay and the supermarkets when clothes shopping etc then you can still live a comfortable lifestyle with holidays and nice things, just bought at a cheaper price.
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    £21k p/a outside of London and the Home Counties is really comfortable to live on, especially if you share where you live. Even in London with a shared property you'll have enough disposable income to live happily, go on holiday, have a few luxuries (I've lived in London, it's easily possible you'd just have to live somewhere like Bethnal Green). Sure you won't have enough to invest in the stock market, buy a house etc but with the way our generation is being royally screwed over by the past couple generations (horrible economy, unsustainable old age welfare payments, the incredible inflation of the housing market etc) a lot fewer of us are going to have the opportunities our parents and grandparents did. Furthermore if £21k is your starting wage, that's a decent place to start, if you progress in your career by your early 30s you should be earning the amounts to do a little more.

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