Posted by Richard Willett - Memes and headline comments by David Icke Posted on 4 July 2024

Is It Possible to Live Well Earning $30,000 a Year in America? Yes–With These Conditions

By Charles Hugh Smith

Can a couple of hardworking people live well in America on $30,000 a year in earnings? Yes, if they’re willing to do what’s needed to make it happen.

Is it possible to live well on $30,000 a year in America? Let’s start with the raw numbers. I am starting with a couple, not an individual, so we’re talking about two people living well on $30,000 earnings a year.

Why $30,000 a year? Several reasons. One, it’s a full-time wage at $15/hour, a rate that is (or will be) minimum wage in some states and two, it’s about half of the median annual earnings of full-time workers in the US. In other words, it’s within reach of most workers with a few years of experience.

$30K a year is $2,500 a month. Average Social Security/Medicare and income tax withholding is around 22%, or $550 a month, leaving the wage earner $1,950 net income. Self-employed people have to pay the employers’ share of Social Security/Medicare on top of the employees’ half–an additional 7.65%, a total of 15.3%. (Yes, that’s a big chunk. You get used to it. Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s.) That pushes their withholding closer to 30%, leaving around $1,750 to $1,800 a month income net of withholding.

So under what conditions can you live well on $1,950 a month in America?

First, own your land and house free and clear, or have the right to live in a house that’s free and clear of debt. In the status quo, that requires a huge inheritance. But since few of us actually receive a huge inheritance, let’s stipulate that we’re discussing lifestyles that are outside the conventional status quo.

For example, building a micro-house on a friend’s land in trade for helping them. This is what I did at the age of 24. My buddy was a retired US Marines vet (in-country ‘Nam) with acreage he couldn’t possibly use so we made a deal that worked for both of us. We built a sturdy micro-house without any electrical power, just hand tools, and after living in a tent, my femme and I found it pretty luxurious. I went back 30+ years later and it was still in use.

Alternatively, find a way to live cheap and save half your earnings for enough years to buy a plot of land somewhere where people with lots of money don’t care to live. The longer we scrimp and save, the more capital we save to invest. If we have to borrow, borrow as little as possible so it can be paid off with a few years of work.

Or find someone who’s needing to sell, or willing to sell a piece of their land, and try to work out private financing. Of course you still need an experienced attorney to draw up the contract so both parties’ rights and obligations are stipulated and protected, but the basic idea is seek older folks who may be happy with the monthly income at an interest rate lower than a bank mortgage.

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