With inflation continuing to rise, an hourly wage of $38 may seem high or barely adequate depending on your situation. This article will break down the key numbers to show exactly how much yearly and monthly income you can expect at $38 per hour, before and after taxes. We’ll calculate the annual salary for both fulltime and parttime work at this hourly pay rate, factoring in how unpaid time off can reduce actual takehome earnings. Converting an hourly wage to a yearly income can be confusing, but we’ll outline the formulas stepbystep. We’ll also evaluate if $38 per hour is considered a good salary now and what standard of living it provides. Whether you’re considering a job offer at $38 an hour or want to better grasp how an hourly wage translates to annual or monthly earnings, this article will provide the crucial math. We’ll look at typical jobs paying $38 per hour, whether that income allows you to afford major purchases like a home or car, tips to increase your pay, and more. With the cost of living increasing so rapidly, it’s important to understand hourly pay in terms of real annual buying power.
Table of Contents
Convert $38 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.
$38 an Hour is How Much a Year?
If you make $38 an hour, your yearly salary would be $79,040. 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($38) x Weeks worked per year(52) = $79,040
$38 an Hour is How Much a Month?
If you make $38 an hour, your monthly salary would be $6,586.67. We calculated this number by dividing your annual income by 12 months.
Hours worked per week (40) x Hourly wage($38) x Weeks worked per year(52) / Months per Year(12) = $6,586.67
$38 an Hour is How Much a Biweekly?
If you make $38 an hour, your biweekly salary would be $3,040.
Hours worked per week (40) x Hourly wage($38) x 2 = $3,040
$38 an Hour is How Much a Week?
If you make $38 an hour, your weekly salary would be $1,520. Calculating based on 5 days per week and 8 hours each day.
Hours worked per week (40) x Hourly wage($38) = $1,520
$38 an Hour is How Much a Day?
If you make $38 an hour, your daily salary would be $304. We calculated your daily income based on 8 hours per day.
Hours worked per day (8) x Hourly wage($38) = $304
$38 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:
$38 per hour x 40 hours per week x 52 weeks per year = $79,040
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 $79,040 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 $79,040 .
Part time $38 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 25 hours per week instead of 40. Here’s how you calculate your new yearly total:
$38 per hour x 25 hours per week x 52 weeks per year = $49,400
By working 15 fewer hours per week (25 instead of 40), your annual earnings at $38 an hour drop from $79,040 to $49,400.
That’s a $29,640 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 $38 an hour:
Hours Per Week  Earnings Per Week  Annual Earnings 

40  $1,520  $79,040 
35  $1,330  $69,160 
30  $1,140  $59,280 
25  $950  $49,400 
20  $760  $39,520 
15  $570  $29,640 
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.
$38 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 $38 per hour normally, you would make $57 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 $38 per hour = $1,520
 5 overtime hours paid at $57 per hour = $285
 Your total one Week earnings =$1,520 + $285 = $1,805
If you worked 45 hours each week for 52 weeks, here’s how your annual earnings increase thanks to overtime pay:
$1,805 per week x 52 weeks per year = $93,860
That’s $14,820 more than you’d earn working just 40 hours per week at $38 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 $38 an hour:
Overtime hours per work day  Hours Per Week  Earnings Per Week  Annual Earnings 
0  40  $1,520  $79,040 
1  45  $1,805  $93,860 
2  50  $2,090  $108,680 
3  55  $2,375  $123,500 
4  60  $2,660  $138,320 
5  65  $2,945  $153,140 
6  70  $3,230  $167,960 
7  75  $3,515  $182,780 
How Unpaid Time Off Impacts $38/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($38) x Weeks worked per year(50) = $76,000 annual salary
With 2 weeks unpaid time off, your annual earnings at $38/hour would drop by $3,040.
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  $1,520  $79,040 
1  51  $1,520  $77,520 
2  50  $1,520  $76,000 
3  49  $1,520  $74,480 
4  48  $1,520  $72,960 
5  47  $1,520  $71,440 
6  46  $1,520  $69,920 
7  45  $1,520  $68,400 
Key Takeaways for $38 Hourly Wage
In summary, here are some key points on annual earnings when making $38 per hour:
 At 40 hours per week, you’ll earn $79,040 per year.
 Parttime of 30 hours/week results in $59,280 annual salary.
 Overtime pay can boost yearly earnings, e.g. $14,820 extra at 45 hours/week.
 Unpaid time off reduces your total income, around $3,040 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.
$38 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 $38 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 $38 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 $79,040 gross annual pay, your federal tax bracket is 22%.
Your estimated federal tax would be:
$5,147 + ($79,040 – $44,726) x 22% = $12,696.08
So at $38/hour with $79,040 gross pay, you would owe about $12,696.08 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:
$79,040 gross pay x 3.07% PA tax rate = $2,426.53 estimated state income tax
So with $79,040 gross annual income, you would owe around in $2,426.53 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:
$79,040 gross pay x 2.5% local tax rate = $1,976 estimated local tax
So with $79,040 in gross earnings, you may owe around $1,976 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:
$79,040 x 6.2% + $79,040 x 1.45% = $6,046.56
So you can expect to pay about $6,046.56 in Social Security and Medicare taxes out of your gross $79,040 in earnings.
Total Estimated Tax Payments
Based on the examples above, your total estimated tax payments would be:
Federal tax: $12,696.08
State tax: $2,426.53
Local tax: $1,976
FICA tax: $6,046.56
Total Estimated Tax: $23,145.17
Calculating Your Take Home Pay
To calculate your annual take home pay at $38 /hour:
1. Take your gross pay
2. Subtract your estimated total tax payments
$79,040 gross pay – $23,145.17 Total Estimated Tax = $55,894.83 Your Take Home Pay
n summary, if you make $38 per hour and work fulltime, you would take home around $55,894.83 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 $38 Per Hour to Yearly, Monthly, Biweekly, and Weekly Salary After Taxes
If you make $38 an hour and work fulltime (40 hours per week), your estimated yearly salary would be $79,040 .
The $79,040 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 $38 An Hour Is How Much A Year After Taxes, we assumed the following conditions:
 You are single with $79,040 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 $23,145.17 , Your Take Home Pay is $55,894.83 , Total tax rate is 29.28%.
So next we’ll use 29.28% as the estimated tax rate to calculate your weekly, biweekly, and monthly aftertax income.
$38 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  $79,040  29.28%  $23,145.17  $55,894.83 
Monthly Salary  $6,586.67  29.28%  $1,928.76  $4,657.90 
BiWeekly Salary  $3,040  29.28%  $890.20  $2,149.80 
Weekly Salary  $1,520  29.28%  $445.10  $1,074.90 
$38 an hour is how much a year after taxes
Here is the adjusted yearly salary after a 29.28% tax reduction:

 Yearly salary before taxes: $79,040
 Estimated tax rate: 29.28%
 Taxes owed (29.28% * $79,040 )= $23,145.17
 Yearly salary after taxes: $55,894.83
Hourly Wage  Hours Worked Per Week  Weeks Worked Per Year  Total Yearly Salary  Estimated Tax Rate  Taxes Owed  AfterTax Yearly Salary 

$38  40  52  $79,040  29.28%  $23,145.17  $55,894.83 
$38 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 $38 per hour: $79,040
 Divided by 12 months per year: $79,040 / 12 = $6,586.67 per month

The monthly salary based on a 40 hour work week at $38 per hour is $6,586.67 before taxes.
After applying the estimated 29.28% tax rate, the monthly aftertax salary would be:

 Monthly beforetax salary: $6,586.67
 Estimated tax rate: 29.28%
 Taxes owed (29.28% * $6,586.67 )= $1,928.76
 Monthly aftertax salary: $4,657.90
Monthly Salary Based on $38 Per Hour
Hourly Wage  Yearly Salary  Months Per Year  BeforeTax Monthly Salary  Estimated Tax Rate  Taxes Owed  AfterTax Monthly Salary 

$38  $79,040  12  $6,586.67  29.28%  $1,928.76  $4,657.90 
$38 an hour is how much biweekly after taxes
Many people are paid biweekly, meaning every other week. To calculate the biweekly pay at $38 per hour:
 Hourly wage: $38
 Hours worked per week: 40
 Weeks per biweekly pay period: 2
 $38 * 40 hours * 2 weeks = $3,040 biweekly
Applying the 29.28%estimated tax rate:
 Biweekly beforetax salary: $3,040
 Estimated tax rate: 29.28%
 Taxes owed (29.28% * $3,040 )= $890.20
 Biweekly aftertax salary: $2,149.80
Biweekly Salary at $38 Per Hour
Hourly Wage  Hours Worked Per Week  Weeks Per Pay Period  BeforeTax Biweekly Salary  Estimated Tax Rate  Taxes Owed  AfterTax Biweekly Salary 

$38  40  2  $3,040  29.28%  $890.20  $2,149.80 
$38 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: $38
 Hours worked per week: 40
 $38 * 40 hours = $1,520 per week
Accounting for the estimated 29.28% tax rate:
 Weekly beforetax salary: $1,520
 Estimated tax rate: 29.28%
 Taxes owed (29.28% * $1,520 )= $445.10
 Weekly aftertax salary: $1,074.90
Weekly Salary at $38 Per Hour
Hourly Wage  Hours Worked Per Week  BeforeTax Weekly Salary  Estimated Tax Rate  Taxes Owed  AfterTax Weekly Salary 

$38  40  $1,520  29.28%  $445.10  $1,074.90 
Key Takeaways
 An hourly wage of $38 per hour equals a yearly salary of $79,040 before taxes, assuming a 40 hour work week.
 After accounting for an estimated 29.28% tax rate, the yearly aftertax salary is approximately $55,894.83 .
 On a monthly basis before taxes, $38 per hour equals $6,586.67 per month. After estimated taxes, the monthly takehome pay is about $4,657.90 .
 The beforetax weekly salary at $38 per hour is $1,520 . After taxes, the weekly takehome pay is approximately $1,074.90 .
 For biweekly pay, the pretax salary at $38 per hour is $3,040 . After estimated taxes, the biweekly takehome pay is around $2,149.80 .
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 $38 an Hour a Good Salary?
How does an income of $38 an hour stack up? Here are a few ways to judge:
 The median hourly wage in the US is approximately $27. So $38/hour is over 40% higher than average.
 $38/hour equates to roughly $79,000 per year for full time employment. This cracks the top 30% of household incomes nationally.
 The typical college graduate earns around $28/hour starting out. $38 is a solid experienced professional wage.
 In low costofliving regions like the Midwest, $38/hour affords upper middle class status. You can live quite comfortably.
 In high cost coastal metros, $38/hour retains a middle class lifestyle. But home ownership may be challenging.
 As a household sole breadwinner, $38/hour supports a family with prudent budgeting. Dual incomes open up more options.
Overall, $38/hour certainly qualifies as a good salary relative to national averages, even after tax and living cost adjustments. While not “rich”, it provides earnings well above median and a solid middle class lifestyle in most areas.
Jobs that Pay $38 an Hour
Which occupations typically pay wages close to $38 per hour? Here are some examples nationwide:
 Registered Nurses – Average RN makes $38/hour, ranging from $30 (South) to $55 (CA, NY)
 Web Developers – Experienced coders earn $38 to $50/hour on average
 HVAC Technicians – With overtime, their total hourly exceeds $38/hour
 Machinists – Range from entrylevel $15/hour to expert $45/hour
 Insurance Agents – Average around $35/hour, high performers earn $50+
 Electricians – Apprentices start around $15/hour, journeymen $38+/hour
 Plumbers – Similar to electricians, apprentices to masters exceed $38
 Accountants – CPAs in corporate accounting average around $38/hour
 Paralegals – $38/hour is common at large commercial law firms
 Project Managers – IT and construction PMs earn $35 to $45/hour
 Civil Engineers – Median pay nears $40/hour, rising with licensure
 Radiologic Technologists – Top out around $38/hour with experience
As you can see, high skill trades, licensed professions, and technology careers comprise most $38/hour jobs. Location also impacts pay significantly.
Can You Live Off $38 An Hour?
How far does $38/hour go towards covering basic living costs? Here is a look at typical budget breakdowns:
Housing
 Recommended max housing budget at this income: $1,300 per month
 In most cities, affords a 12 bedroom apartment or modest house.
 In NYC or the Bay Area, sharing an apartment with roommates is more realistic.
 Can afford small fixerupper or condo for firsttime home buyers.
Transportation
 Owning a used Toyota or Honda: $400 per month
 Leasing a basic new car: $450 per month
 Public transit pass: $100 per month
Food
 Feeding one person: $400 per month
 Family of four: $800 per month
Utilities
 Electric, gas, water, cell phone: $300 per month
 With cable TV and internet: $400
Insurance
 Decent health insurance: $300 per month
 Car insurance: $100
Other Costs
 Entertainment, clothing, etc: $500
 Savings contributions: 10% of income ($800 per month)
 Supporting a child: add $400 per month
In summary, housing will consume a large portion of the budget, but $38/hour affords a comfortable middleclass lifestyle overall.
The Impact of Inflation
Inflation must be accounted for when assessing real wage growth and purchasing power. Here’s how inflation diminishes $38/hour:
 Over the past 10 years, $38/hour today equates to $31.58/hour in 2012 dollars
 If inflation runs 3% annually, in 5 years $38 will only buy $32.74 of goods and services
 At 5% inflation, $38 will be just $31.33 in 5 year’s time
Asking for cost of living or merit pay increases of 35% is necessary just to maintain the status quo purchasing ability of wages. Factoring longterm inflation into financial plans and cash flow projections is essential.
5 Ways To Increase Your Hourly Wage
If your budget is tight at $38/hour, here are some options to boost that figure:
 Request a raise from your employer, citing performance and inflation
 Seek promotion to higher positions within your company or field
 Gain certifications to add skills and increase billing rates
 Move into consulting/contracting roles with higher hourly pay
 Develop side businesses or monetize hobbies and talents
Even small, incremental hourly wage gains make a significant longterm impact. Chart a path to financial growth through career development.
Buying a Car on $38 an Hour
What kind of vehicle purchases fit into a $38/hour income budget?
 Afford loan payments of $500 per month comfortably.
 Purchase new compact SUVs or sedans priced $25,000 and under.
 Buy used luxury vehicles 35 years old valued under $40k.
 Pay cash for late model used cars priced below $15,000.
 Consider moderately priced electric vehicles like the Chevy Bolt.
While luxury supercars are out of reach, $38/hour income provides solid options across new, used and electric vehicles. Prioritize reliability and value over prestige.
Can You Buy a House on $38 An Hour?
Home ownership on a $38/hour salary largely depends on location. Guidelines:
 Plan a max budget around $250,000. Preferably less.
 Live in affordable Midwest, South or Southwest regions.
 Purchase a modest starter home with potential to upgrade over time.
 Secure down payment assistance programs for low down payments.
 Partner with someone to double your income, budget and mortgage capability.
 In ultra highcost areas, condos may be the only ownership option.
You won’t be buying multimillion dollar properties on $38/hour. But with realistic expectations, home ownership is achievable in most markets other than NYC, SF or DC.
Example Budget for $38 Per Hour
Here is a sample monthly budget for a single person earning $38/hour fulltime:
 Gross monthly income: $6,160
 Taxes and deductions: $1,200
 Rent: $1,300
 Utilities: $300
 Car payment: $350
 Car insurance: $120
 Cell phone: $80
 Groceries and dining: $600
 Entertainment: $250
 Clothing: $150
 Insurance: $250
 401k contribution: $600
 Vacation fund: $200
 Remainder/savings: $660
This allows for a comfortable standard of living with financial flexibility. In dual income households, options expand dramatically. But again, housing costs in major metros will require budgettightening tradeoffs.
In Summary
A salary of $38 an hour or $80,000 per year provides a solid middle class lifestyle in most parts of the country. Typical occupations in this earnings range include tradespeople, accountants, nurses, and technology professionals among others. Housing affordability varies greatly by region, but car purchases, entertainment and healthcare are readily attainable at this wage. Starting a family and saving for retirement is viable with prudent budgeting. And owning a home is possible in affordable real estate markets. While inflation nibbles at purchasing power over time, an hourly pay rate of $38 affords financial stability and flexibility within limits of reasonable expectations.