If you plan on working in California, it makes sense to have questions about the average salary and working conditions. You may be curious about the average salary in Los Angeles and San Francisco. The beautiful state has a lot of opportunities to offer. Knowing what to expect may help you prepare accordingly.
The average salary in California is $65,539 and the mean salary is $91,149. The average annual 25th percentile is $48,633 and the average annual 75th percentile is $72,749. The salary you earn in California depends a lot on your career and where you live. The median gross income does not account for the cost tax and other deductions. It does not include non-cash benefits.
If you wish to work in California, it is common to have questions about the average salary. I recommend that you understand what the state’s job market has to offer before making the big move. Even though lots of factors may determine the amount you earn, there are significant differences between different cities. Keep reading to find out the things that may determine your salary in California.
Average Salary in California
The average salary in California is about $65,539. It is slightly lower than the national average of $66,665. Salaries in California go as high as $133,703 and as low $20,154. However, most salaries in the average bracket are between $48,663 and $72,749. Even though the average pay varies from one location to another, research suggests that the opportunity for a pay increase based on experiences is limited. However, the job market is very active. Out of the 50 states, California ranks as 17th for average job salaries.
Some of the highest-paying jobs in California include
- Obstetricians and Gynecologists
- Nurse Anesthetists
- Chief Executives
Some of the most common jobs and their salaries include:
- Miner $60,530
- Roofer $51,050
- Rod Buster $53,220
- Turbine technician $49,080
- Statistician $88,350
- Web developer $82,930
- Software developer $120,710
- Field technician $45,380
- Pipe insulator $51,360
- Operations analyst $91,800
- Cartographer $80,750
- Biomedical engineer $97,900
- Physician Assistant $110,860
- Cement mason $50,970
- Translator and interpreter $55,000
- Nurse practitioner $124,330
- Business analyst $101,440
- Forester $70,040
- Tile installer $48,090
- Electrician $68,130
- Environmental scientist $84,580
- Massage therapist $42,550
- Loan processor $44,480
Some of the fastest-growing jobs in the state include rod buster, miner, wind turbine technician, and web developer.
The minimum wage in California covers both salaried and non-salaried workers. There is a minimum salary for exempt workers as well. Exempt employees must meet certain requirements. They have to earn a minimum salary that equals twice the state minimum wage. The current minimum wage in California is $12 per hour if a business has 25 or fewer employees. It is $13 per hour for bigger companies. It is estimated that the amount may increase to $15 per hour in 2022.
Salaried employees should earn at least the number of their working hours at the minimum wage. If an employee works 40 hours in a full-time job, they should earn at least $480.00 weekly and $24,960 annually.
The minimum wage for many cities and counties is higher than the state average. In Los Angeles County, for example, the minimum wage is $14.25 per hour or $13.25 for employers with less than 25 employees. Other counties and cities with higher minimum wages are
- Berkeley $15.59 per hour
- San Francisco $15.59
- Oakland $14.14 per hour
- San Jose $15.25 per hour
- San Diego $13.00 per hour
According to the California Equal Pay Act, employers cannot determine your income by sex. Income is determined by a seniority system or a merit system. Even though older employees generally earn more than their younger counterparts, you cannot determine your average income in California by age.
The Average Salary in California by Location
The salary you get in California depends on where you live. San Francisco and San Jose have some of the best-paying jobs. Other cities with high-paying jobs and lots of opportunities include Sacramento, Los Angeles, Santa Rosa, and Salinas. They have some of the best opportunities in the United States.
In the Bay area, there is no shortage of software and computer-system jobs. Los Angeles has lots of opportunities for the entertainment industry. In San Francisco, some of the most popular jobs are janitorial, gardening, and receptionist positions.
The average salary in Los Angeles and San Francisco is fair. Generally, the cost of living in San Francisco is over 55% higher than in Los Angeles. The median home cost is 99% more than in Los Angeles. It is the biggest contributor to the cost of living. However, the cost of transportation in Los Angeles is more expensive at 4.3%.
The average salary in Los Angeles is 75,000. The cost of living in the city is 43% above the national average. Some of the most popular job titles in the city include software engineers, operations managers, and project managers. The most popular employers include The Walt Disney Company, Northrop Grumman Corporation, and the University of Southern California.
The average salary in San Francisco is 96,000. The cost of living in San Francisco is 80% above the national average. Some of the most popular occupations in the city include senior software engineers, project managers, and data scientists. Some of the biggest employers include Facebook Inc., Uber Technology Inc., and The Gap Inc.
You may determine your average income in California by age. Household members under 25 an earn average of $35,449. Householders aged 45-64 earn the highest amount. They earn an average of $84,345. Those aged 65 and above earn an average of $51,730.
Does the Cost of Living Match the Average Salary in California?
California is a state of extremes. It has some of the richest and some of the poorest cities. It is, therefore, impossible to determine the exact cost of living for the entire state.
Housing is the most significant contributor to the cost of living. In California, the spectrum of housing costs is big. San Francisco has the most expensive homes. The median home value in the city is $1,304,885 and the median home value is $355,030.
The cost of rent in most California cities is higher than the national average. In Los Angeles, for example, the median rent for two-bedroom homes is $1752. It is almost $577 above the national average. The median rent in San Diego $2030. The average salary in Los Angeles and San Francisco may be proportionate to the cost of living as the costs of utilities, healthcare, and childcare are fair.
In most parts of California, utilities are relatively cheap. Food expenses vary depending on where you live. According to the MIT Living Wage Calculator, an adult in California needs a living wage of about $30,392 before taxation. The costs of a dozen eggs and a gallon of milk are about $1.83 and $2.91. The costs may be higher depending on where you live.
The state has a reliable public transportation network. There are long stretches of highways and high-quality infrastructure. Even though the costs of transportation from one city to another, the average cost is $4.09. At $1,846, the cost of annual insurance is a lot higher than the national average.
Living in California is expensive. If you plan on moving to the state, consider getting the services of a financial advisor. They can help you navigate life in the state
Which City Has the Best Average Salary In California?
If you wish to move to California, moving to a city with a good average salary is a good idea. San Francisco and San Jose top the list for cities with the highest-paying jobs. Los Angeles and Salinas are great as well. However, they aren’t the only employment options. Other great cities in the Golden States include Orinda, Mill Valley, Palos Verdes Estates, Saratoga, Hillsborough, and Los Altos. Hillsborough has one of the best average salaries. However, the cost of living is a lot higher than the state average. The average salary in the city is $127,868. It is higher than the United States average. The median household income in the city is $250,001 annually.
The rate of unemployment is 2.2% which is significantly less than the nation’s average of 3.9%. The job market has been increasing significantly over the previous years. The future job growth rate over the next decade is expected to be higher than in the United States.
The average salary in management jobs is $198,438. The legal industry pays an average of $250,001, architecture and engineering industries pay an average of $96,538, and health practitioners earn an average of $192,125. Some of the most profitable industries include manufacturing, construction, and finance/insurance.
If you are looking for the best place for a job in California, the answer is simple as they all the right places have one thing in common. They are all close to the state’s major employers. Their proximity to other big towns makes them great for investment. Los Altos Hills, Atherton, and Piedmont are great options.
About the author: Marta Kovachek is the author of this article. She graduated from the University of Chicago with a master’s degree in Economics. Marta enjoys writing about the current economic situation and loves helping our readers to find their next "destination". From places to live to complex social and economic topics, we always enjoy Marta's work. Please contact us in case of any questions.