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What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 2:44 pm
by mathwhiz
I guess everyone will have a different definition of comfortable. I define it as solidly upper middle class. You are able to own a nice single family home in a good school district. You are able to eat out and take a family vacation each summer and not sweat the small stuff like an unexpected car repair or health care bill. You are able to save for retirement or college, etc.

I live in a rural/exurb area where it's common for people to commute up to an hour into the city for work and a family can live comfortably on $100k a year which is about double the median income of the area. Cost of living is generally very low compared to big cities in metro areas since there is little local work available. Everyone commutes into the city. You can own a house on acreage for under $200k, a really nice house for $300k. It's not for everyone but I like the peace and quiet even if I have to deal with long commutes.

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 2:48 pm
by iamblessed
mathwhiz wrote:
Sun Nov 17, 2019 2:44 pm
I guess everyone will have a different definition of comfortable. I define it as solidly upper middle class. You are able to own a nice single family home in a good school district. You are able to eat out and take a family vacation each summer and not sweat the small stuff like an unexpected car repair or health care bill. You are able to save for retirement or college, etc.

I live in a rural/exurb area where it's common for people to commute up to an hour into the city for work and a family can live comfortably on $100k a year which is about double the median income of the area. Cost of living is generally very low compared to big cities in metro areas since there is little local work available. Everyone commutes into the city. You can own a house on acreage for under $200k, a really nice house for $300k. It's not for everyone but I like the peace and quiet even if I have to deal with long commutes.
The average household income where I live is around 55k. We are comfortable on 20k. I think you make your own comfort.

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 2:51 pm
by TheLaughingCow
$60k if you're a saver.

$50k if you aren't.

Assuming 1-2 children.

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 2:51 pm
by RickBoglehead
Haven't done a survey to ask. People don't talk about their incomes, nor whether they feel comfortable or not.

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 2:54 pm
by MathIsMyWayr
There are many variables.
Any way, FYI
"For example, $192,530 per year is “in the upper-income tier”—that is, the top 30 percent of earners—for a household of up to three people in San Francisco. But for four persons under the same income, that counts as middle class."
https://sf.curbed.com/2019/2/25/1823982 ... rea-salary

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 3:00 pm
by fposte
Nerdwallet's Cost of Living Calculator is good for this--it gives an overall result but also breaks it down into categories to compare.

There are people comfortable around here at all kinds of incomes, so I don't know what number I'd give.

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 3:00 pm
by dru808
$100,000 for a family of 3-4. This would be lower middle class. We’re a family of 3 with a income about 70% higher. Middle class

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 3:03 pm
by F150HD
"What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?" - without stating ones location, I'm unclear how this would be useful.

As making say 50k in rural Iowa vs San Francisco are vastly different, despite being the same amount of $$.

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 3:03 pm
by student

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 3:15 pm
by dru808
student wrote:
Sun Nov 17, 2019 3:03 pm
This is a good resource.

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2 ... dle-class/
Cool tool, I guess we’re considered upper middle class.

Re: What household income is considered "comfortable" where you live?

Posted: Sun Nov 17, 2019 3:28 pm
by LadyGeek
This thread has run its course and is locked (not personal nor actionable). General comment threads are off topic in the forums with "Personal" in the title. See: A reminder that non-investing general comment threads are OT
- It must be personal. In other words, you must be asking about your own situation. You can also ask on behalf of someone specific, such as a family member.

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If you have a specific question, please ask directly and provide sufficient information for members to supply appropriate advice.