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Average Salary in NYC
If you’re seriously thinking about New York City as a place to live, you’ll want to be sure that you can do so within your means. A wide range of salaries exists in the Big Apple, so it’s important to know what to expect. Many factors will eventually determine your ability to balance your expenses with your paycheck. To start you off, here’s an introduction to the average salary in New York City.

What Is the Average Salary in New York City?

According to U.S. Census Bureau’s 2013-2017 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates, the median individual income in New York City is $50,825. The median household income in New York City is $57,782. Household income in the U.S. Census data takes into account the income of everyone who lives inside a single housing unit. This includes anyone from individuals, groups of roommates and families. Note that this figure represents the gross amount, before taxes and other deductions.

Median household income represents the middle number in the list of all household incomes. Half of all earners make more than the median and half of all earners make below it. The mean New York City household income, which is calculated by adding all incomes and dividing that figure by the number of incomes you added up, is affected by the outlier salaries on either end of the spectrum. In New York City, the mean household income is $93,196. This figure takes into account everyone 16 and older with earnings.

Per capita income, on the other hand, is income averaged for everyone 16 or older living in the city. This makes it reliably much lower than all other figures because it includes non-earners as well.

The data below comes from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2013-2017 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates.

Income in New York City
Type Income Amount
Median Income
  • Household: $57,782
  • Individual: $50,825
Mean Income
  • Household: $93,196
  • Individual: $74,834
Per Capita Income $35,761

How Does the Average Salary in NYC Compare?

Average Salary in NYC
The average salary in NYC is below the national average. The median household income in the U.S. in 2017 was $61,372. That figure is approximately 6% higher than the median household income for New York City, which is $57,782.

Unfortunately, the cost of living in New York City is higher than the national average. The price of most expenses, from rent and transportation to food and entertainment, is relatively high. If you want to live in the Big Apple, you’ll need to be smart about your savings.

What to Know About Salaries in New York City

Average Salary in NYCFor what it’s worth, people do make it in New York, and it doesn’t always require spending a fortune. Still, housing in Manhattan certainly isn’t cheap. New York City ranks second highest among the largest U.S. cities for income required to pay rent. The average apartment in Manhattan is 700 square feet, about the size of a one-bedroom apartment. The average rent in Manhattan is $4,188, according to the website RentCafé. In addition, only about 1% of the housing in Manhattan ranges from $1,500-$2,000 in cost. More affordable options are likely available outside of Manhattan.

On the plus side, salaries in New York City appear to be narrowing the gender wage gap, based on figures from a Census Bureau report citing information collected in the 2018 and earlier Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplements. In the Big Apple, men’s median earnings are $51,791. Median earnings for women are $49,355. This is a gender wage gap of roughly $0.05 on the dollar, which is far better than the national ratio of roughly $0.80 on the dollar. In 2017, the real median earnings of American men working full-time and year-round was $52,146. For American women, that number was $41,977.

Tips for Planning for Your Financial Future

  • No matter where you live, striving to meet your dream salary also means that you should be mindful of how you’ll support yourself after your working years. Though it’s never too early to start planning for retirement, many people unfortunately often overlook this aspect of being in the working world.
  • Especially if you’re starting to earn more money, it could be time to consider working with a financial advisor to help you achieve your savings and retirement goals. Our financial advisor matching tool can help. Answer a few questions and we’ll connect you with as many as three advisors in your area.

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Eric Reed Eric Reed is a freelance journalist who specializes in economics, policy and global issues, with substantial coverage of finance and personal finance. He has contributed to outlets including The Street, CNBC, Glassdoor and Consumer Reports. Eric’s work focuses on the human impact of abstract issues, emphasizing analytical journalism that helps readers more fully understand their world and their money. He has reported from more than a dozen countries, with datelines that include Sao Paolo, Brazil; Phnom Penh, Cambodia; and Athens, Greece. A former attorney, before becoming a journalist Eric worked in securities litigation and white collar criminal defense with a pro bono specialty in human trafficking issues. He graduated from the University of Michigan Law School and can be found any given Saturday in the fall cheering on his Wolverines.
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