With inflation on the rise and the cost of living increasing, an hourly wage of $29 may seem high to some and barely getting by to others. In this article, we will break down exactly how much you can expect to earn yearly and monthly at $29 an hour, both before and after taxes. We’ll look at how unpaid time off can impact your actual takehome pay, and whether $29 an hour is considered a good salary in today’s economy. If you are considering a job offer with an hourly rate of $29, or simply want to understand how an hourly wage translates to annual earnings, this article will walk through the numbers in detail. We’ll also look at job examples that typically pay $29/hour, what standard of living that affords, whether you can buy a house or car with that income, and tips to potentially increase your earnings. Calculating salaries from hourly wages can be confusing, but this article aims to make the math straightforward.
Table of Contents
Convert $29 Per Hour to Weekly, Monthly, and Yearly Salary
Input your wage and hours per week to see how much you’ll make monthly, yearly and more.
$29 an Hour is How Much a Year?
If you make $29 an hour, your yearly salary would be $60,320. We calculate your annual income based on 8 hours per day, 5 days per week and 52 weeks in the year.
Hours worked per week (40) x Hourly wage($29) x Weeks worked per year(52) = $60,320
$29 an Hour is How Much a Month?
If you make $29 an hour, your monthly salary would be $5,026.67. We calculated this number by dividing your annual income by 12 months.
Hours worked per week (40) x Hourly wage($29) x Weeks worked per year(52) / Months per Year(12) = $5,026.67
$29 an Hour is How Much a Biweekly?
If you make $29 an hour, your biweekly salary would be $2,320.
Hours worked per week (40) x Hourly wage($29) x 2 = $2,320
$29 an Hour is How Much a Week?
If you make $29 an hour, your weekly salary would be $1,160. Calculating based on 5 days per week and 8 hours each day.
Hours worked per week (40) x Hourly wage($29) = $1,160
$29 an Hour is How Much a Day?
If you make $29 an hour, your daily salary would be $232. We calculated your daily income based on 8 hours per day.
Hours worked per day (8) x Hourly wage($29) = $232
$29 an Hour is How Much a Year?
The basic formula to calculate your annual salary from an hourly wage is:
Hourly Rate x Hours Worked per Week x Number of Weeks Worked per Year = Annual Salary
So for a $20 per hour job:
$29 per hour x 40 hours per week x 52 weeks per year = $60,320
However, this simple calculation makes some assumptions:
 You will work 40 hours every week of the year
 You will not get any paid time off
Therefore, it represents your earnings if you worked every week of the year, without any vacation, holidays, or sick days.
Accounting for Paid Time Off
The $60,320 base salary does not yet factor in paid time off (PTO). Let’s assume the job provides:
 2 weeks (10 days) paid vacation
 6 paid holidays
 3 paid sick days
This totals 19 paid days off, or nearly 4 weeks of PTO.
Importantly, this paid time off should not be deducted from the annual salary, since you still get paid for those days.
So with 4 weeks PTO, the annual salary would remain $60,320 .
Part time $29 an hour is How Much a Year?
Your annual income changes significantly if you work parttime and not fulltime.
For example, let’s say you work 20 hours per week instead of 40. Here’s how you calculate your new yearly total:
$29 per hour x 20 hours per week x 52 weeks per year = $30,160
By working 20 fewer hours per week (20 instead of 40), your annual earnings at $29 an hour drop from $60,320 to $30,160.
That’s a $30,160 per year difference just by working parttime!
Here’s a table summarizing how your annual earnings change depending on how many hours you work per week at $29 an hour:
Hours Per Week  Earnings Per Week  Annual Earnings 

40  $1,160  $60,320 
35  $1,015  $52,780 
30  $870  $45,240 
25  $725  $37,700 
20  $580  $30,160 
15  $435  $22,620 
The more hours per week, the higher your total yearly earnings. But parttime work allows for more life balance if you don’t need the full salary.
$29 an Hour With Overtime is How Much a Year?
Now let’s look at how overtime can increase your annual earnings.
Overtime kicks in once you work more than 40 hours in a week. Typically, you earn 1.5x your regular hourly wage for overtime hours.
So if you make $29 per hour normally, you would make $43.50 per hour for any hours over 40 in a week.
Here’s an example:
 You work 45 hours in a Week
 40 regular hours paid at $29 per hour = $1,160
 5 overtime hours paid at $43.50 per hour = $217.50
 Your total one Week earnings =$1,160 + $217.50 = $1,377.50
If you worked 45 hours each week for 52 weeks, here’s how your annual earnings increase thanks to overtime pay:
$1,377.50 per week x 52 weeks per year = $71,630
That’s $11,310 more than you’d earn working just 40 hours per week at $29 an hour.
Overtime can add up! But also consider taxes and worklife balance when deciding on extra hours.
Here’s a table summarizing how your annual earnings change depending on how many hours you work per week at $29 an hour:
Overtime hours per work day  Hours Per Week  Earnings Per Week  Annual Earnings 
0  40  $1,160  $60,320 
1  45  $1,377.50  $71,630 
2  50  $1,595  $82,940 
3  55  $1,812.50  $94,250 
4  60  $2,030  $105,560 
5  65  $2,247.50  $116,870 
6  70  $2,465  $128,180 
7  75  $2,682.50  $139,490 
How Unpaid Time Off Impacts $29/Hour Yearly Earnings
So far we’ve assumed you work 52 paid weeks per year. Any unpaid time off will reduce your total income.
For example, let’s say you take 2 weeks of unpaid leave. That brings your paid weeks down to 50:
Hours worked per week (40) x Hourly wage($29) x Weeks worked per year(50) = $58,000 annual salary
With 2 weeks unpaid time off, your annual earnings at $29/hour would drop by $2,320.
The table below summarizes how your annual income changes depending on the number of weeks of unpaid leave.
Weeks of unpaid leave  Paid weeks per year  Earnings Per Week  Annual Earnings 
0  52  $1,160  $60,320 
1  51  $1,160  $59,160 
2  50  $1,160  $58,000 
3  49  $1,160  $56,840 
4  48  $1,160  $55,680 
5  47  $1,160  $54,520 
6  46  $1,160  $53,360 
7  45  $1,160  $52,200 
Key Takeaways for $29 Hourly Wage
In summary, here are some key points on annual earnings when making $29 per hour:
 At 40 hours per week, you’ll earn $60,320 per year.
 Parttime of 30 hours/week results in $45,240 annual salary.
 Overtime pay can boost yearly earnings, e.g. $11,310 extra at 45 hours/week.
 Unpaid time off reduces your total income, around $2,320 less per 2 weeks off.
 Your specific situation and location impacts taxes and PTO.
Knowing your approximate annual salary and factors impacting it makes it easier to budget and plan your finances. The next step is calculating takehome pay after deductions like taxes.
$29 An Hour Is How Much A Year After Taxes
Figuring out your actual annual earnings based on an hourly wage can be complicated once taxes are taken into account. In addition to federal, state, and local income taxes, 7.65% of your gross pay also goes to Social Security and Medicare through FICA payroll taxes. So how much does $29 an hour equal per year after FICA and income taxes are deducted from your gross pay?
Below we’ll walk through the steps to calculate your annual net take home pay if you make $29 per hour. This will factor in estimated federal, FICA, state, and local taxes so you know exactly what to expect.
Factoring in Federal Income Tax
Your federal income tax will be a big chunk out of your gross pay. Federal tax rates range from 10% to 37%, depending on your tax bracket.
To estimate your federal income tax rate and liability:
Look up your federal income tax bracket based on your gross pay.
2023 tax brackets: single filers
Tax rate  Taxable income bracket  Tax owed 

10%  $0 to $11,000.  10% of taxable income. 
12%  $11,001 to $44,725.  $1,100 plus 12% of the amount over $11,000. 
22%  $44,726 to $95,375.  $5,147 plus 22% of the amount over $44,725. 
24%  $95,376 to $182,100.  $16,290 plus 24% of the amount over $95,375. 
32%  $182,101 to $231,250.  $37,104 plus 32% of the amount over $182,100. 
35%  $231,251 to $578,125.  $52,832 plus 35% of the amount over $231,250. 
37%  $578,126 or more.  $174,238.25 plus 37% of the amount over $578,125. 
For example, if you are single with $60,320 gross annual pay, your federal tax bracket is 22%.
Your estimated federal tax would be:
$5,147 + ($60,320 – $44,726) x 22% = $8,577.68
So at $29/hour with $60,320 gross pay, you would owe about $8,577.68 in federal income taxes.
Considering State Income Tax
In addition to federal tax, most states also charge a state income tax. State income tax rates range from about 1% to 13%, with most falling between 4% and 6%.
Key Takeaways

 California, Hawaii, New York, New Jersey, and Oregon have some of the highest state income tax rates.
 Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming don’t impose an income tax at all.
 Another 10 U.S states have a flat tax rate—everyone pays the same percentage regardless of how much they earn.
A StatebyState Comparison of Income Tax Rates
STATE  TAX RATES  LOWEST AND HIGHEST INCOME BRACKETS 

Alaska  0%  None 
Florida  0%  None 
Nevada  0%  None 
South Dakota  0%  None 
Tennessee  0%  None 
Texas  0%  None 
Washington  0%  None 
Wyoming  0%  None 
Colorado  4.55%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
Illinois  4.95%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
Indiana  3.23%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
Kentucky  5%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
Massachusetts  5%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
New Hampshire  5%  Flat rate on interest and dividend income only 
North Carolina  4.99%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
Pennsylvania  3.07%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
Utah  4.95%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
Michigan  4.25%  Flat rate applies to all incomes 
Arizona  2.59% to 4.5%  $27,806 and $166,843 
Arkansas  2% to 5.5%  $4,300 and $8,501 
California  1% to 13.3%  $9,325 and $1 million 
Connecticut  3% to 6.99%  $10,000 and $500,000 
Delaware  0% to 6.6%  $2,000 and $60,001 
Alabama  2% to 5%  $500 and $3,001 
Georgia  1% to 5.75%  $750 and $7,001 
Hawaii  1.4% to 11%  $2,400 and $200,000 
Idaho  1.125% to 6.5%  $1,568 and $7,939 
Iowa  0.33% to 8.53%  $1,743 and $78,435 
Kansas  3.1% to 5.7%  $15,000 and $30,000 
Louisiana  1.85% to 4.25%  $12,500 and $50,001 
Maine  5.8% to 7.15%  $23,000 and $54,450 
Maryland  2% to 5.75%  $1,000 and $250,000 
Minnesota  5.35% to 9.85%  $28,080 and $171,221 
Mississippi  0% to 5%  $5,000 and $10,001 
Missouri  1.5% to 5.3%  $1,121 and $8,968 
Montana  1% to 6.75%  $2,900and $17,400 
Nebraska  2.46% to 6.84%  $3,340 and $32,210 
New Jersey  1.4% to 10.75%  $20,000 and $1 million 
New Mexico  1.7% to 5.9%  $5,500 and $210,000 
New York  4% to 10.9%  $8,500 and $25 million 
North Dakota  1.1% to 2.9%  $41,775 and $458,350 
Ohio  0% to 3.99%  $25,000 and $110,650 
Oklahoma  0.25% to 4.75%  $1,000 and $7,200 
Oregon  4.75% to 9.9%  $3,750 and $125,000 
Rhode Island  3.75% to 5.99%  $68,200 and $155,050 
South Carolina  0% to 7%  $3,110 and $15,560 
Vermont  3.35% to 8.75%  $42,150 and $213,150 
Virginia  2% to 5.75%  $3,000 and $17,001 
Washington, D.C.  4% to 9.75%  $10,000 and $1 million 
West Virginia  3% to 6.5%  $10,000 and $60,000 
Wisconsin  3.54% to 7.65%  $12,760 and $280,950 
To estimate your state income tax:
Look up your state income tax rate based on your gross pay and filing status.
Multiply your gross annual pay by the state tax rate.
For example, if you live in Pennsylvania which has a flat 3.07% tax rate, your estimated state tax would be:
$60,320 gross pay x 3.07% PA tax rate = $1,851.82 estimated state income tax
So with $60,320 gross annual income, you would owe around in $1,851.82 Pennsylvania state income tax. Verify your specific state’s income tax rates.
Factoring in Local Taxes
Some cities and counties levy local income taxes ranging from 13% of taxable income.
To estimate potential local taxes you may owe:
 Check if your city or county charges a local income tax.
 If yes, look up the local income tax rate.
 Multiply your gross annual pay by the local tax rate.
For example, say you live in Columbus, OH which has a 2.5% local income tax. Your estimated local tax would be:
$60,320 gross pay x 2.5% local tax rate = $1,508 estimated local tax
So with $60,320 in gross earnings, you may owe around $1,508 in Columbus local income taxes. Verify rates for your own city/county.
Accounting for FICA Taxes (Social Security & Medicare)
FICA taxes are a combination of Social Security and Medicare taxes that equal 15.3% of your earnings. You are responsible for half of the total bill (7.65%), which includes a 6.2% Social Security tax and 1.45% Medicare tax on your earnings.
In 2023, only the first $160,200 of your earnings are subject to the Social Security tax
There is an additional 0.9% surtax on top of the standard 1.45% Medicare tax for those who earn over $200,000 (single filers) or $250,000 (joint filers).
To estimate your FICA tax payment:
$60,320 x 6.2% + $60,320 x 1.45% = $4,614.48
So you can expect to pay about $4,614.48 in Social Security and Medicare taxes out of your gross $60,320 in earnings.
Total Estimated Tax Payments
Based on the examples above, your total estimated tax payments would be:
Federal tax: $8,577.68
State tax: $1,851.82
Local tax: $1,508
FICA tax: $4,614.48
Total Estimated Tax: $16,551.98
Calculating Your Take Home Pay
To calculate your annual take home pay at $29 /hour:
1. Take your gross pay
2. Subtract your estimated total tax payments
$60,320 gross pay – $16,551.98 Total Estimated Tax = $43,768.02 Your Take Home Pay
n summary, if you make $29 per hour and work fulltime, you would take home around $43,768.02 per year after federal, state, local , FICA taxes.
Your actual net income may vary depending on your specific tax situation. But this gives you a general idea of what to expect.
Convert $29 Per Hour to Yearly, Monthly, Biweekly, and Weekly Salary After Taxes
If you make $29 an hour and work fulltime (40 hours per week), your estimated yearly salary would be $60,320 .
The $60,320 per year salary does not account for taxes. Federal, state, and local taxes will reduce your takehome pay. The amount withheld depends on your location, filing status, dependents, and other factors.
Just now during our calculation of $29 An Hour Is How Much A Year After Taxes, we assumed the following conditions:
 You are single with $60,320 gross annual pay, your federal tax bracket is 22 %.
 You live in Pennsylvania which has a flat 3.07% tax rate
 You live in Columbus, OH which has a 2.5% local income tax.
In the end, we calculated your Total Estimated Tax is $16,551.98 , Your Take Home Pay is $43,768.02 , Total tax rate is 27.44%.
So next we’ll use 27.44% as the estimated tax rate to calculate your weekly, biweekly, and monthly aftertax income.
$29 Per Hour to Yearly, Monthly, Biweekly, Weekly,and Week Salary After Taxes Table
Income before taxes  Estimated Tax Rate  Income Taxes  After Tax Income  
Yearly Salary  $60,320  27.44%  $16,551.98  $43,768.02 
Monthly Salary  $5,026.67  27.44%  $1,379.33  $3,647.33 
BiWeekly Salary  $2,320  27.44%  $636.61  $1,683.39 
Weekly Salary  $1,160  27.44%  $318.31  $841.69 
$29 an hour is how much a year after taxes
Here is the adjusted yearly salary after a 27.44% tax reduction:

 Yearly salary before taxes: $60,320
 Estimated tax rate: 27.44%
 Taxes owed (27.44% * $60,320 )= $16,551.98
 Yearly salary after taxes: $43,768.02
Hourly Wage  Hours Worked Per Week  Weeks Worked Per Year  Total Yearly Salary  Estimated Tax Rate  Taxes Owed  AfterTax Yearly Salary 

$29  40  52  $60,320  27.44%  $16,551.98  $43,768.02 
$29 an hour is how much a month after taxes
To calculate the monthly salary based on an hourly wage, you first need the yearly salary amount. Then divide by 12 months.


 Yearly salary before taxes at $29 per hour: $60,320
 Divided by 12 months per year: $60,320 / 12 = $5,026.67 per month

The monthly salary based on a 40 hour work week at $29 per hour is $5,026.67 before taxes.
After applying the estimated 27.44% tax rate, the monthly aftertax salary would be:

 Monthly beforetax salary: $5,026.67
 Estimated tax rate: 27.44%
 Taxes owed (27.44% * $5,026.67 )= $1,379.33
 Monthly aftertax salary: $3,647.33
Monthly Salary Based on $29 Per Hour
Hourly Wage  Yearly Salary  Months Per Year  BeforeTax Monthly Salary  Estimated Tax Rate  Taxes Owed  AfterTax Monthly Salary 

$29  $60,320  12  $5,026.67  27.44%  $1,379.33  $3,647.33 
$29 an hour is how much biweekly after taxes
Many people are paid biweekly, meaning every other week. To calculate the biweekly pay at $29 per hour:
 Hourly wage: $29
 Hours worked per week: 40
 Weeks per biweekly pay period: 2
 $29 * 40 hours * 2 weeks = $2,320 biweekly
Applying the 27.44%estimated tax rate:
 Biweekly beforetax salary: $2,320
 Estimated tax rate: 27.44%
 Taxes owed (27.44% * $2,320 )= $636.61
 Biweekly aftertax salary: $1,683.39
Biweekly Salary at $29 Per Hour
Hourly Wage  Hours Worked Per Week  Weeks Per Pay Period  BeforeTax Biweekly Salary  Estimated Tax Rate  Taxes Owed  AfterTax Biweekly Salary 

$29  40  2  $2,320  27.44%  $636.61  $1,683.39 
$29 an hour is how much weekly after taxes
To find the weekly salary based on an hourly wage, you need to know the number of hours worked per week. At 40 hours per week, the calculation is:
 Hourly wage: $29
 Hours worked per week: 40
 $29 * 40 hours = $1,160 per week
Accounting for the estimated 27.44% tax rate:
 Weekly beforetax salary: $1,160
 Estimated tax rate: 27.44%
 Taxes owed (27.44% * $1,160 )= $318.31
 Weekly aftertax salary: $841.69
Weekly Salary at $29 Per Hour
Hourly Wage  Hours Worked Per Week  BeforeTax Weekly Salary  Estimated Tax Rate  Taxes Owed  AfterTax Weekly Salary 

$29  40  $1,160  27.44%  $318.31  $841.69 
Key Takeaways
 An hourly wage of $29 per hour equals a yearly salary of $60,320 before taxes, assuming a 40 hour work week.
 After accounting for an estimated 27.44% tax rate, the yearly aftertax salary is approximately $43,768.02 .
 On a monthly basis before taxes, $29 per hour equals $5,026.67 per month. After estimated taxes, the monthly takehome pay is about $3,647.33 .
 The beforetax weekly salary at $29 per hour is $1,160 . After taxes, the weekly takehome pay is approximately $841.69 .
 For biweekly pay, the pretax salary at $29 per hour is $2,320 . After estimated taxes, the biweekly takehome pay is around $1,683.39 .
Understanding annual, monthly, weekly, and biweekly salary equivalents based on an hourly wage is useful when budgeting and financial planning. Taxes make a significant difference in takehome pay, so be sure to account for them when making income conversions. Use this guide as a reference when making salary calculations.
What Is the Average Hourly Wage in the US?
Last Updated: Sep 1 2023
US Average Hourly Earnings is at a current level of $33.82, up from 33.74 last month and up from 32.43 one year ago. This is a change of 0.24% from last month and 4.29% from one year ago.
Average Hourly Earnings is the average dollars that a private employee makes per hour in the US. This metric is a part of one of the most important releases every month which includes unemployment numbers as well. This is normally released on the first Friday of every month. This metric is released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
What is the average salary in the U.S.?
Last Updated: July 18, 2023
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics uses median salary data rather than averages to avoid skewed numbers from outlying high and low numbers. Median weekly earnings of the nation's 121.5 million fulltime wage and salary workers were $1,100 in the second quarter of 2023, the U.S.
If a person works 52 weeks in the year, then this represents a national annual salary of $57,200.
Is $29 an Hour a Good Salary?
Whether $29 an hour is considered a good wage largely depends on your location, expenses, and career field. Based on a 40hour work week, this hourly rate translates to an annual salary of around $60,320. This exceeds the national median personal income of $41,535 in 2021, suggesting that $29/hour provides a relatively comfortable income for a single person.
However, in high costofliving areas like New York City or San Francisco, this wage would be considered quite low for a single earner. The cost of housing, childcare, healthcare, and other necessities is much higher in these regions, making $29 an hour a tight budget. Therefore, the purchasing power of $29 an hour varies significantly across different parts of the country.
Jobs that pay $29 an hour
Though not extremely common, there are a diverse range of jobs that pay approximately $29 per hour:
 Registered Nurses – The average RN makes $33 per hour, though wages can range from $24 – $48 depending on experience, specialization, and location.
 Machinists – Machinists operate various machine tools to produce precision parts and instruments. Their median wage is $28.94.
 Insurance Sales Agents – Agents who sell insurance policies like health, life, and property insurance can expect to earn a median wage of $28.77 per hour.
 Web Developers – Developers who design and create websites can make a median salary of about $29/hour. More experienced coders may earn significantly more.
 Paralegals – Paralegals who assist lawyers with research, document preparation, and case management typically earn around $28 per hour.
 Pest Control Technicians – Exterminators who inspect properties and treat pest problems make about $29 on average. The highest paid can make over $40 per hour.
 Massage Therapists – Massage therapists in the U.S. earn median pay of $23.23 per hour, though selfemployed massage therapists can charge $60 or more.
The jobs above provide examples of positions that may pay around $29 per hour on average. However, salaries can vary significantly within occupations.
Can You Live Off $29 An Hour?
While a $29 hourly wage provides a middleclass income on paper, successfully living off this salary depends on your individual circumstances and budgeting practices.
The average American spends around $61,224 per year as of 2021, which would be slightly more than the $60k earnings of someone making $29 an hour fulltime. However, averages include high earners who skew the data upwards. Responsible budgeting and smart financial choices can allow someone to live comfortably below the national spending average.
A single person with no dependents can generally meet all essential expenses like housing, transportation, food, and healthcare on $29 an hour, assuming moderate housing costs for their area. However, buying a home would be challenging in most markets. $29/hour earners can expect a solid middleclass lifestyle, but little disposable income for dining out, entertainment, travel, etc.
For single parents and couples with dependents, covering childcare costs and other family expenses on $29 an hour becomes very difficult, especially in higher cost areas. Dual incomes are generally needed to support a family comfortably on this wage. Overall, context is key – $29 an hour provides a tight but doable budget for individuals, but families require much higher earnings.
The impact of inflation on the value of $29 an hour
With inflation at a 40year high in 2022, consumer prices have rapidly increased while wage growth has lagged behind. This has led to a significant decline in real wages and purchasing power for many workers paid by the hour.
The buying power of $29/hour has fallen over 3% in the past year due to high inflation. While a 3% drop may seem small, it adds up over time to result in thousands of dollars in lost wage growth. On top of this, inflation is expected to remain well above prepandemic levels in the near future.
High costs for gas, food, housing, vehicles, and other needs will continue to erode the living standards of those earning $29 per hour. For example, average national rent has increased over 10% from 2021 to 2022. This means that housing costs are absorbing a higher proportion of income for $29/hour workers.
Unless hourly pay rates start increasing comparable to inflation, earnings of $29 will likely struggle to maintain a middleclass existence if the highinflation environment persists over the long term.
5 Ways To Increase Your Hourly Wage?
For those currently earning $29 or less per hour, here are some potential strategies to increase your income:
 Ask for a raise – If you’ve gained experience and proven value in your current role, negotiate a pay increase with your manager. Even a couple dollars per hour quickly adds up.
 Pursue promotions – Applying for higher positions at your workplace is an avenue to boost your hourly pay.
 Find a new higherpaying job – Explore job postings to see if other employers are offering better compensation for your skills.
 Get certified or take classes – Gaining new skills, knowledge and qualifications can qualify you for higherpaying work.
 Start a side business – Use your free time to generate supplemental income through freelancing, online sales, or other ventures.
A combination of increasing your earnings and cutting expenses is key to improving your financial position. With determination, hard work and smart money management, you can steadily improve your standard of living.
Buying a car on $29 an hour
Buying a car is one of the major expenses that $29/hour earnings will need to cover. While achievable, individuals earning this wage will need to budget carefully when purchasing a vehicle.
According to Experian in 2022, the average monthly car payment in the U.S. is $636. On a salary of around $60k annually, this would equate to 12.7% of gross income going towards a car payment each month. Financial advisors generally recommend spending no more than 1015% of your income on vehicle expenses.
Realistically, $29/hour workers should aim to spend no more than $7,000 – $10,000 to purchase a used car in good condition. This would allow payments of around $300 a month with a 72month loan term, while leaving room in the budget for insurance, gas and repairs.
Going beyond this price range is unwise, as lowercost reliable transportation options are available. With careful research and shopping, a quality used vehicle that will meet needs for several years can be attained on an hourly budget of $29.
Can You Buy a House on $29 An Hour?
In most housing markets, buying a home on a single $29/hour income would be extremely challenging. However, home ownership may be possible under the right circumstances.
The general recommendation is to spend no more than 3x your annual income on a home. At $60k per year, this allows a purchase price of around $180,000. The median existing home price in the U.S. is currently around $340,000, more than 1.5x higher than what a $29/hour income can typically support.
While owning a medianpriced home is likely out of reach, buying a more modest property in a lower cost area may work if you:
 Save up a 20% down payment
 Have minimal other debts
 Qualify for low mortgage rates and government assistance programs
 Are willing to budget very carefully in other areas
Alternatives like purchasing a condo or townhouse rather than singlefamily home can also help reduce costs. But ultimately, $29/hour earners will face major obstacles to home ownership in today’s challenging real estate market. Dual incomes will provide greater ability to buy.
Example Budget For $29 Per Hour
Here is an example monthly budget for an individual earning $29 an hour while working 40 hours per week in an average costofliving urban area:
 Gross Monthly Income: $4,960
 Federal Income Tax: $560 (estimate)
 FICA Tax: $380 (estimate)
 State Income Tax: $150 (estimate)
 Take Home Pay: $3,870
 Rent (1 bedroom apartment): $1,200
 Utilities: $150 (electricity, internet, phone)
 Groceries: $400
 Car Payment: $300
 Auto Insurance: $100
 Gasoline: $150
 Health Insurance: $350 (ACA plan)
 Retirement Savings: $200
 Entertainment: $150 (dining out, movies, etc)
 Misc. Expenses: $200
 Total Expenses: $3,300
 Remaining: $570
This leaves $570 left over each month that can be used for additional savings goals, debt payments, or unanticipated expenses. While not a large surplus, a careful spender can potentially get by on these earnings. However, $29/hour would not allow much financial wiggle room.
In Summary
An hourly wage of $29 provides a middleclass income on paper that can potentially support a modest lifestyle, especially for single adults. However, successfully living on this salary requires diligent budgeting, responsible spending, and modest housing costs. Geographic location is also key – $29 goes much further in low cost regions than highcost urban areas.
Inflation continues to erode purchasing power for those earning $29/hour, who already face barriers to home ownership and limited ability to absorb surprise expenses. Overall, while not a luxurious wage, $29/hour remains adequate for singles or dualincome couples focused on achieving financial stability through frugal living. With wise money management, a comfortable, debtfree life is certainly achievable.