How much income do you need to live well?

posted 6 months ago in The Lounge
  • poll: What pre-tax salary do you need to live well? (not household income)
    50-75k : (31 votes)
    22 %
    75-100k : (39 votes)
    27 %
    100-125k : (18 votes)
    13 %
    125-150k : (16 votes)
    11 %
    150-200k : (9 votes)
    6 %
    200-300k : (16 votes)
    11 %
    300-400k : (2 votes)
    1 %
    400k+ : (13 votes)
    9 %
  • Post # 63
    716 posts
    Busy bee

    bougainvillea : My primary issue was with your equating an income figure to living well. There are more dimensions to a good life than money and people tend to lose sight of that. 

    On the rest, it’s a tall order but fair enough and more power to you in getting there! 

    Post # 65
    468 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: August 2019

    I don’t see how it is possible to work 80 hours per week and live anything resembling “well”…how does one have time for dates? Hobbies? TV? Gloriously lazy Tuesday nights? Family time? I’m not super surprised that some people feel they need huge sums to live well, but I am surprised that people feel that a work-life balance isn’t a crucial part of living well.

    Post # 66
    2510 posts
    Sugar bee

    bougainvillea :  I think you’re still missing the point. It’s possible to live “well” on under 50k without living at home and not having expenses, and to still dress well, take good care of yourself, and travel to boot. Especially if you have 2 incomes, but even with just one. I lived comfortably on 36k when I was single. I may not have had a ton of luxuries, but I had a very good quality of life, including numerous luxuries like meals and drinks out with friends, cute clothes, manicures, a cute studio apartment in a trendy area of a big city. 

    Also, I have to laugh at the idea of “manifesting” a 200k salary and business class travel. Couldn’t help but think of this meme.

    Post # 68
    1969 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2018

    This post reminded me of this meme. 

    Post # 69
    1999 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: May 2016

    i also think this has a lot to do with where you live, and what lifestyle you live and/or how much of your income your spending on rent/mortgage, etc. You may live pretty well in a rural town on less then 50k, but might not be living too well in say San Francisco, nyc, etc on that kind of income. 

    if i was single 50k sounds pretty amazing, but maybe not if that was combined income with a husband and kids…..

    Post # 70
    54 posts
    Worker bee

    I think this question is extremely relative which is why the second question is needed. For me, I was not living well when I made less than $50k. BUT what I want in order to live well could be extremely different compared to other people.

    i don’t think anyone should be shamed for needing $1 million or $10k per year in order to live well according to them. Money may not buy you happiness but for me it sure helped make me happy cause having more of it took away a lot of stress and helped me afford things I had always wanted and I was able to do it by myself which makes me super happy.

    Post # 71
    1030 posts
    Bumble bee

    “Living well” equates to “living HAPPY” to me. That is an entirely different survey than what you listed, and has nothing to do with money.

    For any Bee this post made feel badly, I make in the highest bracket category on this survey. My DH’s salary is a seven figure one. When we got together, I made 48k in residency and my Darling Husband made slightly more. We rented a small apartment with a sweetheart of a cat. Things were simple, and we appreciated small things.

    In our new income bracket and neighborhood, in a high COL area, people constantly are in our business. We have to attend charitable events and donate to causes that our neighbors participate in “for fun” as bored housewives just so we won’t be the black sheep of the area.

    Our jobs are emotionally taxing. I was injured in an accident and broke my spine and spent over a year recovering with no income. Darling Husband worked harder, and received a promotion that put him into a category that most will never, ever see.  But we have little time for each other sometimes now.  Only a few nights ago, we had a date night that involved shopping, and Darling Husband produced an 18k Hermès item I had been dreaming of for several years. 24 hours later, we were arguing over something small that hurt my feelings (I wanted an apology) while he argued that he’d done something so generous for me that I shouldn’t be fighting for my emotional validaiton on the other topic and he shouldn’t have to apologize.

    We’re sleeping in opposite ends of a large, empty home in a glorious neighborhood that many people know by name because he took the fight to a below the belt punch that I am still reeling from. There is nothing “well” about the terrible pain I feel.

    Money is a curse.

    Happiness is food on your plate, a child or pet to hold close, and a partner who holds you up when you are feeling weak and protects you when you are feeling vulnerable.

    And I don’t see that option on THIS list.

    OP, learn to love your current life and be happy within yourself and your partnership rather than chasing some ideal of what you THINK is living “well.”

    Post # 72
    951 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2017

    dianaj17 :  Same.  I work a job where I do almost zero overtime (sometimes it’s unavoidable) because I value my time outside of work.  I enjoy my job but I enjoy my life with my family,  friends, and hobbies more.  Working even 45 hours a week sounds miserable to me.  

    Post # 73
    951 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2017

    OP, you keep saying that you should have put an under 50k option on your poll because you were at that point at one time and lived at home, had no desire to travel or wear nice clothes.  I am under 50k (more with my husband but the majority of his paycheck goes right into our savings for now)and own my own home (in a medium col area) , travel (go on 1-2 vacations a year) and wear nice clothes (shop mostly bargain but do splurge on local boutique clothes every few months) I am able to afford all this because of no debt, no kids, and I take advantage of deals.  You probably have more expensive tastes than me but not everyone under 50k is living in their parent’s basement eating grocery store ramen every night.  

    Post # 74
    130 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: October 2016

    $50k is a good amount of money where I live. I could stay at home instead of working, we can have our new house built really quickly, newer cars….$50k and we would be pretty great. We aren’t particularly materialistic people though. As long as everyone is happy, healthy and safe that’s all we really care about.

    Post # 75
    1969 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2018

    notmeeither :  thanks for being so honest. Money absolutely doesn’t buy happiness – just means people arrive at their problems in style  

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