In Money

How much do you really make per hour?

I was talking to a friend the other night who lamented that he only made $60,000 but he knows other guys who are pulling in $130,000 a year.

I asked him: How many hours do you work versus how many they work?

He admitted that he works a normal workday about 40 hours a week, and the other guys are working 100 hours a week.

I told him to do the math and figure out the wage per hour because he was making more than those guys.

40 hours a week x 50 weeks (2 weeks vacation) =

2000 hours a year

100 hours a week x 50 weeks (2 weeks vacation) =

5000 hours a year

$60,000 / 2000 hours a year = $30/hour

$130,000 / 5000 hours a year = $26/hour

…and there you have it.

What those guys are really doing, are working two jobs and a half. Do they have a life? I don’t know. I wouldn’t want it, if they did.

…for those who are curious, my wage per hour is $130.

What’s your wage per hour?

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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

Am my own Sugar Daddy. Am a millionaire at 36 after getting out of $60K of student debt in 18 months, a little over a decade earlier, using I have worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K with an average lifetime savings rate of 50%. I have 11 side incomes that are on track in 2020 to make me $50K - $75K. I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I am all about balance - between time and money, and also enjoying my money. I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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Posted on January 24, 2013

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  1. Amanda @ My Life, I Guess

    I make a whopping $10 an hour. Bummer.

    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Still a good wage versus $0

  2. Connor

    I’m confused. Your last post stated that you make $130K a year, but here you state you gross $130/hr. Which one is it?

    1. save. spend. splurge.


      I charge $130/hour but I don’t work the whole year. So in the case of last year or whatever year you are referring to, I only billed half the year.

    2. save. spend. splurge.

      Sorry, should also clarify that some years I work more, some I work less. It’s not a full-time 100% guaranteed-to-be-billable job.

  3. MiningFrugal

    I no longer calculate my hourly wage based off gross/net bring home. I calculate based off net minus any non-discretionary spending. It helps my put things in perspective when considering a purchase.

    1. save. spend. splurge.

      True so you look at net disposable hourly wage then

      1. MiningFrugal

        @save. spend. splurge.: Exactly. One of the nice things about it is it allows me to effectively give myself a raise by lowering my expenses or increasing my income (via investments).

        Because my discretionary is much lower than my net/gross, it makes small changes seem much more impressive.

  4. Gen Y Finance Guy

    In my day job my rate is about $55/hour gross. I had a side consulting business over the last 12 months where my rate was $100/hour gross.

    Now the goal is to bring in enough money on the side to make the combined rate $100/hour and then completely ditch the day job.


    1. save. spend. splurge.

      I like having multiple income streams. I make a lot but it’s one stream.

  5. Sally

    My target wage per hour is $173/hr. I’m assuming I take 4 weeks for vacation (although probably not all at once), and work 60 hour weeks when I’m on. I’m not there yet 🙂 Actually, ideally I would get 6 weeks vacation per year. That’s more than enough for me because I would like to do 1-2 big trips per year. So then my target wage is $181/hr!

    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Er.. Do you mean $173 / $181 as a target hourly wage in an average 2000 work year? Cuz.. if I do the math:

      52 weeks – 4 weeks = 48 weeks (4 weeks vacation)
      60 hours x 48 weeks = 2880 hours a year that you are working

      2880 / 2000 hours (average work year) = Working 1.44% over an average work year, or 880 hours more.

      Taking your gross target hourly wages:
      $173 per hour in an average 2000 hour year is $346,000
      $181 per hour in an average 2000 hour year is $362,000

      When you divide it by the hours you propose to work:
      $346,000 / 2880 = $120.14/hour is your actual working wage
      $362,000 / 2880 = $125.69/hour is your actual working wage

  6. E

    Wow that’s awesome. I can only hope to make that much one day!

    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Well it is touch and go with projects

      1. E

        @save. spend. splurge.: You are my inspiration. 🙂

        1. save. spend. splurge.

          I hope for reasons other than just money 🙂

  7. Clarisse @ Make Money Your Way

    Wow, your wage per hour is $130? That is pretty impressive!

  8. Taylor Lee @ Engineer Cents

    Before taxes it’s about $80/hour. After taxes and including commute it’s more like $47.

    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Oh I didn’t calculate net per hour. If I had to after taxes it would be $105

      1. Glenn

        @save. spend. splurge.: Do you bill 100% of your hours? Non-billable time REQUIRED to support your consulting business should be accounted for as well.

        1. save. spend. splurge.

          When I am on a project I bill 100% of my work. For my own consulting overhead I don’t track the hours or bill it to the client, I assume it is part of running the business and it is perhaps 15 minutes a week, an hour max.


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