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-   -   Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At? (https://britishexpats.com/forum/usa-57/based-net-salary-what-should-i-looking-763863/)

ShaggyRS6 Jul 4th 2012 10:08 am

Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
This is a really difficult question (for me) and getting my head around the figures is giving me a constant headache. So please forgive me in advance for being a complete dufus.

Here's today's stupid question :)

I finally know what my net Salary will be after Federal, State, and all the other taxes associated with living in the states. The figure I have to play with is $90,465

Out of that I will wont to rent a place, get a car, pay travel from into Manhatten, food, insurance etc etc.

What I was initially thinking was that I could afford around $3000 per month rent, say $500 per month car and then the rest is left for all the other stuff plus allowing us to live a good life.

Am I being realistic or do I need to re-think on the amount of rent?

What are your thoughts?

Chrisdc Jul 4th 2012 10:18 am

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
If you can give some more background, people should be able to advise you.

Are you single? A family of five?

Are you looking to live in the suburbs, or the city?

Are you planning on going to fancy New York restaurants, or will you be cooking at home? Etc.. etc..

Like you say, it's a difficult question - the more we have to go on, the better.


Originally Posted by ShaggyRS6 (Post 10153998)
This is a really difficult question (for me) and getting my head around the figures is giving me a constant headache. So please forgive me in advance for being a complete dufus.

Here's today's stupid question :)

I finally know what my net Salary will be after Federal, State, and all the other taxes associated with living in the states. The figure I have to play with is $90,465

Out of that I will wont to rent a place, get a car, pay travel from into Manhatten, food, insurance etc etc.

What I was initially thinking was that I could afford around $3000 per month rent, say $500 per month car and then the rest is left for all the other stuff plus allowing us to live a good life.

Am I being realistic or do I need to re-think on the amount of rent?

What are your thoughts?


ShaggyRS6 Jul 4th 2012 10:31 am

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
Hi Chris, thanks for the reply.

Family if 3 , wife child of 15 2 dogs. Want to leave in Ho Ho Kus, Glen Rock or something similar. Basically no cities or in the middle of a town but more on the outskirts.

No eating out on a regular basis, we do like our at home family life although we will want to explore a lot. Fishing , hunting driving that type of thing.

Wife will try and get a part time job after 3 months as well .

davidtheprof Jul 4th 2012 2:23 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
yep, all depends on the lifestyle you want...

90k net means about 135k gross approx., which is a good professional salary here - median household income in the US is under $50k and falling, see:
http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/...ome/50383882/1

But then life in the NYC region is expensive, if you want a decent school you either have to pay for expensive housing to get a public (state) school or fork out around $20-30k/yr for private (35k in NYC!).

you didn't say if the 90 is net of 401k pension contribution - if you want to take advantage of the tax deductible limit, 17k in 2012.

will your 15 year old stay for university here? there's another 50k a year for 4 years! ouch...

wish you luck!

ShaggyRS6 Jul 4th 2012 3:18 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
Net of pension yes.

Chrisdc Jul 4th 2012 4:17 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
Can't help too much with family budgeting - We're a couple with no kids - on a combined income of about $150K, living in a 1-bed in manhattan. Our rent is $2800 and we seem to be able to live comfortably and go out enough/save/take trips. That said, we don't have a car, school expenses etc.. We have company health insurance, which we thought was pretty good until recently. They just added a $2,000 deductible. And I just spent $1,500 on a root canal/crown (with insurance.) Having an emergency fund is key - these kind of expenses can suddenly hit you when you least expect them. And don't get sucked in to the easy availability of credit...

One difference from the UK is that you can work hard to reduce your tax bill. Especially if either of you do any self-employed work on the side. It pays to get a good accountant. It pays to take some time to learn a bit about the tax system, otherwise you could be leaving money on the table.

HTH

Jerseygirl Jul 4th 2012 5:51 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
Don't forget health insurance/dental/optical co-pays, deductibles etc.

May have a problem finding a rental with 2 dogs. What breed are they?

davidtheprof Jul 4th 2012 5:57 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
and read Arlie Hochschild's new book, The Outsourced Self.
in NYC, you "need" to budget a dog-walker, dog-therapist (on top of your own, of course), event planner, life coach, etc....

Bob Jul 4th 2012 7:31 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
That $500 per car including insurance or that on top?

$3K on a house with a garden, with a couple of dogs might be a struggle I'd imagine, but probably more doable on a condo.

Factored in parking/commuter train/subway costs?

Factored in costs of after school activities? Those sports events and the like and if involved in sports, travel costs.

Might not be so bad out your way but I'm impressed by how far kids travel for sports. Down my way, kids doing American football are in training for 3 hours, 3 days a week and come match day travel to upstate NY, Vermont, New Hampshire and Connecticut. And that's just for the 6 year olds.

md95065 Jul 4th 2012 7:52 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 

Originally Posted by Bob (Post 10154862)
That $500 per car including insurance or that on top?

Note that Bob said "per car" - you are probably going to need two unless you are living within walking distance of the nearest station or your wife is going to be your chauffeur - she isn't going to survive long if your only vehicle spends most of it's life parked somewhere and she can't use it ..

AdobePinon Jul 4th 2012 9:22 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
A few thoughts...

Make sure that you run your own numbers on the gross salary. This is too important to trust entirely to someone else, and there are a lot of fudge factors to consider.

Be aware that a 401k is NOT a pension. The amount you can draw after retirement depends on many things, but ultimately it depends on how much you and your employer *choose* to put in, which also affects the number you have been given for your net salary.

Medical insurance is a biggie. Do you have a choice of several plans through your employer, have you truly picked the one that's best for you, and do you know how much you have to pay into it? If not, you might spend more than you're hoping. Also, know that double digit percentage spikes in premiums are not uncommon every year or two.

And, unless you have a big stack of cash already, plan on saving hard as soon as you get here - unexpected expenses can can kill you, almost literally.

$3k a month for rent is a :blink: number to me. I guess things are more expensive that way, but that does seem to be the best place to either make or blow your budget.

Good luck!

HarryTheSpider Jul 5th 2012 12:00 am

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 

Originally Posted by Chrisdc (Post 10154605)
Can't help too much with family budgeting - We're a couple with no kids - on a combined income of about $150K, living in a 1-bed in manhattan. Our rent is $2800 and we seem to be able to live comfortably and go out enough/save/take trips. That said, we don't have a car, school expenses etc.. We have company health insurance, which we thought was pretty good until recently. They just added a $2,000 deductible. And I just spent $1,500 on a root canal/crown (with insurance.) Having an emergency fund is key - these kind of expenses can suddenly hit you when you least expect them. And don't get sucked in to the easy availability of credit...

One difference from the UK is that you can work hard to reduce your tax bill. Especially if either of you do any self-employed work on the side. It pays to get a good accountant. It pays to take some time to learn a bit about the tax system, otherwise you could be leaving money on the table.

HTH

ChrisDC - any suggestions for a book or web site where I can learn a little more about this aspect of self employed work on the side as 1 of several ways to make the most of the tax system?

Cheers

HTS

ShaggyRS6 Jul 5th 2012 5:45 am

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
Thanks for the tips so far everyone , Its got me thinking. May have a few more questions later.

Chrisdc Jul 6th 2012 4:55 pm

Re: Based On Net Salary - What Should I Be Looking At?
 
Don't have any specific reco's - but here are some topics to investigate/google...

- Whether to file jointly or separately with your wife
- Filling out the W4 and how many exemptions/allowances you take - and how that affects your tax bill (or refund) at the end of the year
- The standard deduction
- To itemize or not to itemize
- Being a sole proprietor (you don't need to form a company to start a business... and if you start a business you can investigate a lot more options for tax deductions.)
- Split years and US/UK tax treaty + avoiding dual taxation (there was another recent thread on this topic)

Cheers!


Originally Posted by HarryTheSpider (Post 10155167)
ChrisDC - any suggestions for a book or web site where I can learn a little more about this aspect of self employed work on the side as 1 of several ways to make the most of the tax system?

Cheers

HTS



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