The median U.S. salary for a single person is about $34,000 per year and the average cost of living in America is also around that figure. How does this compare to other countries? Will your lifestyle be more expensive or cheaper if you choose one country over another?

A good salary for a single person depends on what they do. If they are an engineer, they should be making around $50,000 per year. If they are a doctor, then their salary should be around $150,000 per year. Read more in detail here: what is a good salary for a woman.

What is a Reasonably High Salary for One Person?

Finding out what a decent wage for a single person is is a great place to start if you’re single and attempting to create a strong financial plan for yourself!

You can be attempting to choose a vocation, accept a new work offer, or simply just think about college majors or postgraduate study alternatives.

When making such selections, you should give some thought to the lifestyle you wish to be able to afford. Your decision would ultimately depend on how much is a decent pay for one individual to live comfortably.  


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Even if you are not single, thinking about what a decent income for a single person is is smart financial planning. A single person is defined as someone who is not married, in a committed relationship, or in a civil union.

A very mature thing to do is to prepare for the sad loss of a spouse or just push yourself to guarantee that you can stand on your own. 

What then is a reasonable yearly wage for a single person? Are you already producing that? How would you go there? Enter the fray!


How Much Should a Single Person Make?

A single individual with a salary that exceeds the national median income is generally considered to have a decent wage. In the US, the median household income is $67,521. One should be able to live comfortably and pay for all home expenditures on one wage if they make more than $67,521. 

Even if you may be considering the idea of surviving alone, you must take into account the amount of money needed to support a home as you would be living in some kind of dwelling.

We may confidently use the national median household income to assign a value to it. This amount is equivalent to $67,521 in the US. As long as your income is more than the average national household income, which is $67,521, you may consider yourself to be making a respectable wage as a single individual. 

The income level at which you can afford to take care of yourself and pay your household bills is what constitutes a respectable wage for a single person. 

Can you securely pay for all of your essential living costs with only your salary? The question simply comes down to that! You should be in excellent condition if you earn more than $67,521 a year!


good salary for one person - woman with coffee cup


However, whether or not it is excellent depends much on where you choose to live with this money!

The District of Columbia (DC) has a typical household income of over $92K, whereas Maryland, a nearby state, has a median household income of $87K. As a consequence, such regions would have far greater living expenses than, say, Mississippi, where the typical family income is $46K. 

Prices of products, services, housing, and entertainment are often impacted by the overall pay patterns in a certain region. Therefore, if your salary is higher than the $67,521 national median, you should be able to live comfortably in a state where the median family income is lower.

According to statistics, you would have a fair chance of living comfortably and paying for all of your bills with that wage. But in states where earning over $85K is the norm, like Maryland, Massachusetts, or New Jersey, it wouldn’t get you very far. 

If you don’t intend to relocate but would want to have a clear idea of what a reasonable pay for a single person is, you should look up the state’s median household income number. You should aim to earn more than this only from your pay!


Pro tip for determining a person’s fair wage!

Comparing average and median income

The median income should be utilized to determine what a decent single person pay is! You shouldn’t use the average wage!

The arithmetic average of a variety of wages is known as average income or mean income. It is calculated by dividing the total number of wages by the number of salaries that were assessed. 

The statistical midpoint of the range of incomes is known as the median salary. As it is unaffected by any statistical irregularities, this estimate of wages is more accurate.

Do not let unusually high or low incomes affect the median salary value!


What Factors Affect Good Pay? 

What is seen as a decent pay depends on your costs related to: your personal lifestyle, financial commitments like loans and investments, and the cost of living in the city or state you reside in.

In South Dakota, you could afford to make $26K a year to keep above the poverty line; in Washington, DC, $42K is required. 

The location you choose to live in unquestionably plays a significant role in determining what is a good salary for a single person, especially in light of the fact that costs for things like housing, food, entertainment, and travel vary greatly from town to town, as well as across states and countries. 

You may see how the precise amount of the minimum wage needed, to meet basic necessities, differs from state to state for an unmarried individual without children.


Map showing the states with the lowest needed salary and the highest needed salary to satisfy basic needs


How much money it needs to live comfortably is ultimately the definition of a decent wage. What is your notion of living comfortably, then, when considering what is a decent pay for a single person?

You may start placing a price on “living comfortably” after you decide what it means to you. When you add it all together, you get your precise “excellent wage” amount.   

So what should a single person’s yearly wage be in order to live comfortably? You should consider what areas of your life are absolutely necessary.

Combine your personal responsibilities with your financial obligations, such as your payments, loans, investments, and fees. Basically, you have to pay for the necessities of life, which are expensive, as well as the pleasures and peace of mind that are also expensive.

You would get a certain wage amount that is unique to you and your requirements. Make certain to include the prices of:

The Housing (Rent, Mortgage)

• Bills (Utilities, Internet, Phone)

• Credit Card Transaction

The Environment (Vehicle payment, Taxi fares)

• Food

• Recreation and interests

• Investing 

• Loans

• Additional payments and financial obligations

• Nonprofits

• Health Targets

• Emergency funds and savings

• Pension Funds

• Holiday funds

• Coverage (Life, Home, Auto)

Keep in mind that the pricing for the majority of the products on the above list would often depend on the precise location (state and city) in which you decide to reside.

To be complete, we should also mention that your sex, weight, age, and ethnicity may have an impact on the price of your insurance as well as certain other charges. 


a good salary for one person - happy woman in city with money in her hands


What Does a Single Person Make on Average?

The average annual wage for males is $56,628 whereas the average annual wage for women is $46,800, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Based on a 52-week calendar year and a median weekly salary for males of $1,089 and for women of $900.  

The word “average” is used to denote the typical person’s income for this computation, not a mathematical average of earnings. In the US, a male typically earns $56,628 while a woman typically earns $46,800. 

Although the phrase “average pay” is often used carelessly, it is not a reliable indicator of data connected to income. A more precise metric is the median wage.

As was previously said, the average income is calculated mathematically as the total of all incomes divided by the sample size. A statistical anomaly like include multibillionaires’ income would offer a false impression of what a “average” wage is.

The average person’s income would likewise be unfairly inflated if a significant portion of the population were jobless or had very low incomes. 

What is utilized to analyze and accurately depict what the average individual gets and is actually a decent depiction of what a normal pay looks like is the median wage, or statistical mid-point of earnings throughout the US. 


income for one person - happy lady in flower shop


What Does a Single Person’s Livable Wage (Living Wage) Mean?

The minimal income necessary for someone to be able to meet their fundamental necessities is known as the living wage or livable wage. Depending on where you reside, the amount fluctuates. The least costly city in the US is Harlington, Texas, where the living wage is $10.47 per hour, as opposed to the most expensive city, Manhattan, New York, where it is $17.46. 

The states with the lowest living wage are as follows:

• $43,000 in Kentucky

$50k for West Virginia

• $45,000 in South Dakota


The following states have the highest living wage:

• DC, Washington $68,000 (technically not a state) 

Hawaii costs $61,000.

$60,000. Massachusetts

The phrases “living wage” and “livable wage” are interchangeable, and they simply refer to the amount of money that an employee must make in order to be able to pay for their fundamental necessities as a human being, including: clothes, food, housing, and medical care.

Depending on the area, the precise amount changes. However, if you make at least the livable wage for your particular town or city, you may expect to live comfortably. You may anticipate being able to meet the most essential expenses of living in your hometown with this income. 

It is important to distinguish between the minimum wage and a living pay. The legal minimum wage was established in an effort to meet people’s needs for a decent income.

The government is unable to impose a minimum wage in every region of the nation, however. It’s just too complex and would not function!

However, livable wages change over time and vary according on the price of necessities like products and services. For the actual amount in your location, use the MIT Living Wage Calculator. 


single person income - smiling man with power saw


What Is a Good Salary for a Retired Single Person?

For retirees 65 years of age and older, the median retirement income in the United States is $47,357. Consequently, an income of at least $47,357 may be regarded as a satisfactory one after retirement.

However, pensioners make an average (statistical mean) income of $73,228.

Because there are substantial groups of people that generously invest into their retirement years, this “average” figure would be biased to the upper side, much more than the median retirement income. 

It would be evident that large 401K contributions and other large payouts during the golden years of certain exceptional investors would raise the average value. This would not accurately depict the average retiree.

Therefore, to determine what is a fair pay for a single person after retirement, a median value of $47,357 should be utilized for the typical individual. 


What Constitutes a Good Annual Salary Increase?

Most firms provide an annual wage rise of between 3 and 5 percent. Therefore, a wage rise of 5% or more may be deemed excellent, a raise of 3% to 5% is usual, and a raise of less than 3% can be deemed bad.

Of course, the rise would depend on the specific employee who received it. A poor employee who earns a 3 percent raise may consider it commendable given the effort they put into the company. A superior worker may also take offense at a 4 percent raise. 

Everybody would prefer that their yearly pay rise equal the cost of inflation, which over the previous ten years has ranged from 3.2 percent to 7.5 percent. In other words, if your increase covers the inflation rate of the economy, any more money may boost your quality of life. 

That’s just wishful thinking, however!

Just keep in mind that you would have practically gone backwards if you had a raise of 5%, which would be regarded wonderful, but there was a 7% inflation rate for the same time. 


how much does a single person need to live on - nervous man with piggy bank


Is a Salary of $65,000 Good for a Single Person?

If your unique position, cost of living, and lifestyle are within a budget of $65,000 per year, 65K is a reasonable pay for a single individual. In all states, you could get by as long as your bare necessities were met. However, the luxury you can afford will depend on where you decide to reside. 

Remember that the median annual wage in the United States is $67,521, thus 65K would theoretically be considered below average when looking at the whole nation. However, 65K might allow you to live a pretty comfortable existence in the correct state or area. 

You would undoubtedly be able to afford some degree of living accommodations, food, and have all your other basic requirements fulfilled regardless of where you chose to reside given that the livable income in all US states is either $65K or less (only DC is greater). 

However, a “good wage” is often understood to imply that you have a comfortable lifestyle as a consequence of your income. Everyone has a different idea of what it means to live comfortably, so although $65K may be a respectable wage for one person, it may not be for another. 

Even while $65K would be plenty to live comfortably in Kentucky, it might not go very far in Manhattan or Washington, DC. However, you would undoubtedly survive!


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FAQs Regarding How Much a Single Person Can Survive On


Is a salary of $70,00 good for one person?

Given that it is more than the national median income of $67,521, a salary of $70,000 is unquestionably a decent one for a single individual. No of where they chose to reside, someone earning $70,000 or more a year would be able to afford their basic needs.

Depending on where they choose to live and their personal and financial circumstances, they may be able to purchase certain pleasures with their pay. 


Is a salary of $40,000 a year a good one for a single person?

40K is much less than the $67,521 national median income, hence it is not strictly a respectable pay. Additionally, it is less than the $43K minimum living wage for all US states.  

You may be able to afford your basic requirements, such as housing, food, medical care, and other essentials, depending on where you decide to reside. To finance a nice living, you may need to think about getting a second job. 


what is considered a good salary - woman with a lemon


What is a Livable Wage for One Person in the United States?

The living wage or livable salary for one person varies by region in the United States. It starts at $10.47 per hour in Harlington, Texas, and rises to $17.46 in Manhattan, New York.

In terms of states, Hawaii tops the list with a staggering $61K, while Kentucky comes in last with a living salary of $43K. In DC, it is $68K. 


Is a single person able to live off $100,000 a year?

For a single individual, an income of $100,000 is quite good. You should be able to afford a good level of life on your own since this is far more than the median family income for the country.

No matter how much money you make, however, bad money management may make it appear like you don’t have enough. Consequently, a decent compensation for a single individual is $100,000 per year when handled correctly. 


What is the Minimum Amount a Single Person Needs to Survive?

The location where you reside and the financial lifestyle you have chosen are the most crucial factors in determining a fair pay for a single individual. In Kentucky, an income of above $43K is acceptable, whereas in DC, a salary of up to $68K is required.

The range for all other states is $43K to $61K. As a single person attempting to make it on your own, as long as you earn more than $43K, and as long as you choose to live in a place that fits within your budget, you should be good. 


what is a good salary for a single person - shadow of a person on a mountain


Is a Single Person Able to Survive on $30000 a Year?

Less than half of the national median income in the United States ($67,521) is made up of $30000 every year. As a result, it cannot be regarded as a decent wage for a single individual. 

Furthermore, $43K is the lowest living wage in any state. This indicates that in order to meet basic requirements like housing, food, and medication in the United States, an individual must earn at least $43,000 per year.

For a single individual to meet their basic necessities on their own, $30,000 a year is inadequate. They would need either a roommate or a source of additional money.  


FAQ: How Much Money Can a Single Person Survive On?

If a single individual leads a very simple and thrifty lifestyle, they may survive on $20,000 per year. To reduce your food costs, you may want to pursue farming or hunting. To make living more affordable, you might want to find a roommate. 

However, it is feasible for a single person to live on $20,000 a year with the correct mindset and some planning. 


What does the average person regard to be a decent salary?

A decent income for a single individual might mean different things to different people. However, the majority of people see 6 figures, or over $100,000 a year, as a wonderful income. 

The specific amount of money needed for you to live comfortably depends on your financial obligations (expenses, savings, investments), lifestyle, and most significantly, where you reside. 


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Conclusions Regarding the Best Annual Salary for a Single Person

You now have a thorough idea of what a decent single person wage is! If you weren’t previously equipped with some advice for getting there, you do now. Make it happen for yourself, please!

You may adjust your lifestyle, match your budget, or increase your income using this information to achieve your lifestyle objectives. In the end, the precise amount of what you perceive to be a respectable pay relies on you and the lifestyle you aspire to!

Do you have any other opinions on what a fair compensation for one person is? Tell us in the comments section below. Please get in touch with us.

Keep up with us on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram for more discussions about money, advice on increasing your income, and financial inspiration. 




How Much Should a Single Person Make? – The Answer Plus Tips to Get There!

The “what is a good salary to live on” is an important question that people might be asking themselves. There are many factors that go into deciding what the right amount of money to make is. The most important factor being how much your time is worth, and how much you can spend.

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