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Another salary question: Is 40K enough for two?

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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    40

    Another salary question: Is 40K enough for two?

    Hi, I'm looking for jobs in Hong Kong and need to set up a "salary expectation", which many employers ask for.

    After much research and talking to people in Hong Kong, I believe that 40K is what I can expect for my type of job and experience.

    The question is, will this salary be enough for two--me and my husband, who may not be able to get work for a while.

    We are planning to spend about 10K on housing. That leaves us 30K for other bills and expenses. We don't like to party much, but we would like to be able to eat out at least a couple of times a month. I also like to shop--not excessively but at least I don't want to have to save every penny like I do now. In other words, I would like to live a relatively comfortable and what some of you call "a professional lifestyle", which I used to enjoy before I moved to Europe. Also, we love to travel and would like to be able to make some weekend trips in Asia as well as an annual trip back to Europe or the States.

    Can someone tell me if my expectations are realistic or not?

    Thanks!


  2. #2

    Join Date
    Nov 2004
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    1,419

    you can probably 'get by' fairly comfortably on 40K, but i doubt you would build up much of a nest egg at the end of every month...and alot depends on things like where you live (commuting costs) and your travel tastes (five star, business class etc.).


  3. #3

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    40

    Thanks for your reply, Timklip. It is a bit disappointing to know that this salary won't allow much of a nest egg. I have been struggling with this problem for years and hope to be able to save some for the rainy days. But it seems like unless my husband gets a reasonable-paying job, we won't be able to save much (not even for our trip back to Europe???). I guess we'll have to scrimp and save again--not my idea of moving back to Hong Kong where the tax is much lower than in Europe!

    Well, I'm looking at places like TKO or Tuen Mun or any other area that offers apartments in brand-new standards and along the MTR or convenient public transportation routes. Not thinking of Central or even Hong Kong Island since it will be out of our budget. We usually travel on budget.


  4. #4

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    Oct 2005
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    14,261

    normad

    what industry is your husband in? And has he thought of re-training?


  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    Hong Kong
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    23,217

    $40K is double the average household income in HK, and the average household has 3.5 people or thereabouts. You'll be fine.


  6. #6

    Join Date
    May 2005
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    4,279

    The average household income is not worth comparing against when you realise that the average household lives a very different lifestyle to europeans/americans.
    I doubt that normad will be satisfiedwith eating fish ball noodles three times a week or living in a sub-500sq.ft flat.


  7. #7

    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    3,633

    30K after housing should be OK for relatively comfortable lifestyle, though frequent travelling could be bit tight.. You might need to budget all the time...


  8. #8

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    40

    Thanks guys for your opinions.
    I actual love fish ball noodles and cha siu with rice (I eat instant noodles every day to skrimp and save here!) My husband eats very little--less than me!
    I live in a 260 sq. m apartment now so my space is likely to double if I can rent a 500 sq. m flat.
    As far as my husband's job is concerned, he is a musician. Would like to play in a band at entertainment locales if possible. Anyone here who's interested in forming a band?
    Alright, we'll rule out the frequent travel. Just once a year back to Europe and perhaps twice in China/SE Asia.
    So, with this kind of lifestyle, do you think we will be OK?


  9. #9

    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    4,279

    You mean sq. ft and not sq. m right?
    If you have no huge outgoings like a mortgage to repay, life insurance policies and children then you should be OK.


  10. #10

    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Hong Kong
    Posts
    138

    got to think of costs basically, one person can live OK with 5k a month (after rent is paid ofc)... transportation, food, go out once a week sorta thing.. so once you and your husband are paid for and rent that leaves 20k! now of course you could spend 10k a month each and have 10k left.. But basically if you eat cheap (local food) + travel cheap (trams+mtr+buses (not taxis)) and dont go to expensive bars.. then well you will have plenty of cash left to save to go travelling!


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