Is $30/hr a livable wage for a single person in Southern CA? Any salary info appreciated!

  1. I'm a new grad (no job & still awaiting licensure by endorsement in CA) just looking for some more information on livable salary. I grew up in Southern CA but moved out of state 5 years ago for school; I recently returned to (hopefully) start my career here. When I left I was only 20 and still living with family so I don't have a great sense of a livable wage here although I do have a relatively solid grasp on rent/cost of living through research.

    With the job market being so competitive for new grads, I am willing to take just about any job for the first year. It is looking like one of my options may be a small hospital in Orange County that I have heard pats $30/hr. I have entered this wage into all kinds of online calculators but I would really love to hear from some real people!

    If your wage is $30/hr in CA and you work full time, what do you take home after taxes each month? Do you find it manageable to pay rent, bills, etc? I am single and have no children.

    If you make more or less, I'd still really love to hear your responses. Any information is super helpful as I try to gauge what I will be able to afford for rent and general expenses.

    Thank you in advance for responding and for all the helpful information on allnurses!!
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   shibaowner
    $30 per hour is $60 K per year. Yes, you can live on that in SoCal if you are careful. It will help if you have a room mate. Your take home pay should be about 70% of what you earn. Take a look at rentals in the area to see what your main expense will be.
  4. by   slr26
    Thank you for your helpful reply! Being a new grad, I'm uncertain what kind of hours to generally expect on a paycheck (like if 36 usually becomes 40 etc) and didn't calculate any overtime pay but I'm sure this differs by facility. Either way, 60k is more than I came up with!
  5. by   shibaowner
    A quick rule of thumb to calculate your annual pay based on hourly rate, if you are working 40 hours per week is hourly rate x 2,000. If you work 36 hours a week, that is what you get paid for.
  6. by   Wolf at the Door
    why not just live with your family since your from the area. 30 an hour sure. You can make it unemployed if you have the proper savings.
  7. by   Supernacha23
    Depends on where you are living in Orange County. I agree with living with family, if they are close. Save some money, then move out on your own. If not, find a roommate and share the costs. Do you have a car payment, student loans, or credit card debt? If not, you should be ok with a roommate.
  8. by   hopefulkim99
    Hi! In Orange county, it will be tough, but I've lived off of less! I'd also recommend staying with family. If this is not possible, 60k is a great salary for a *single* and frugal person in So. Cal. Like I said, I live off far less lol. Good luck!
  9. by   slr26
    Thanks for all your responses!! I am single and frugal so it looks like I'll be able to make it work. Living with family isn't an option unfortunately (mom lives in senior community so I can only stay temporarily) but I've seen places in north Orange County that seem affordable
  10. by   SAjala16
    If it is just you, get a studio or a 1 bedroom. You can find some around but make sure you look at the areas but you can find some. I was taking care of my 2 daughters and lived in a 2bedroom 2 bath in LA County in an ok area of Hawthorne. Orange County I am sure you can find something. My God daughter and her mom lived in Orange County and they do not make anywhere near $60,000.

    I also agree with all those who say if you have family where you can stay then do it. You can save money and not pay all the costs of renting a place. Pitch in on the bills with them and keep yourself fed and you will be alot better off to be able to get through school without wondering about household bills.
  11. by   Wolf at the Door
    Quote from slr26
    Thanks for all your responses!! I am single and frugal so it looks like I'll be able to make it work. Living with family isn't an option unfortunately (mom lives in senior community so I can only stay temporarily) but I've seen places in north Orange County that seem affordable
    ok, well you can still make it on that.
  12. by   shego85
    It's possible to get by. You're young and single. You can find a nice studio and keep your costs low. Live like a student for the next year. You should be able to get some saving done as well if you're conservative. I know ppl living on less in L.A. and not in poverty either. So yes it is possible. That figure does seem low for socal though. I'm a new grad as well and I work as a care partner(which is like a cna)for UCLA and with differential I'm making close to that. You went to nursing school so you deserve more! Take it but keep looking!

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