$18 An Hour Is How Much a Year? Is it Enough?

Steve Cummings

$18 an hour is how much a year

Most people want to make as much money as possible, but that's not always possible, so they may need to take a job that pays 18 dollars an hour. If you are wondering exactly how much $18 an hour is and whether or not you can live off it, keep reading.

In this post, we will talk about exactly how much it is and what can be done with this money. We'll even create a sample budget and jobs that typically pay $18 an hour without having to earn a college degree. Let's dive right in and see what it's like to make $18 an hour and how to live off this salary.

$18 an Hour is How Much a Year?

Most people will be looking at jobs that pay an annual salary. Picking up a job for $18 an hour is how much a year, then? If we look at 52 weeks during the year with a 40-hour work week, we can break down the numbers quite simply. 

Part-time Pay

A part-time work week is under 35 hours of work. Those who work 34 hours and make $18 an hour would get paid $612 before taxes. If they work an entire year, they will bring in $31,824 before taxes.

Full-time Pay

Individuals that work 35-40+ hours weekly work full time. Working 40 hours a week would make $720 a week or $37,440 a year before taxes.

On average, Americans that make $10,275 to $41,775 a year pay around 12% of their income to taxes. That equates to $25,438.83 after taxes for those that work 34 hours a week and $29,799.66 after taxes for those that work 40 hours a week. They can pay more or less depending on things like dependents and their federal filing status.

How Much is $18 an Hour Per Day?

If we want to calculate how much $18 an Hour Per day would be, then take $18 multiplied by 8 hours. That will equal $144 before taxes. That adequate amount will be less because of taxes. 

How Much is $18 an Hour Per Week?

Now $18 an hour per week would be that $144 multiplied by 5 to get $720 per week. It is not bad, but making more than $1000 a week is much better for the average American. 

How Much is $18 an Hour Per Month?

$18 an hour per month would be the $37,440 divided by 12 months to come to $3,120 per month. If you can make a little extra through side hustles, you can get that amount closer to $4,000 per month before taxes. 

Can Someone Actually Live Off a Salary of $18 an Hour?

The average individual income in America is $53,490 per year for 2022. What this means is that it may be challenging for someone to try to live off of $18 an hour. However, they would still be under the poverty line of $13,590. So, they may be able to live off of $18 an hour if they:

-Live in a cheap area

-Create a budget

-Get creative in their housing

-Keep food costs as low as possible

-Don't have debt

Let's explore these areas to give you an idea of what living on $18 an hour looks like.

Living In A Cheap Area

In order to live off of $18 an hour, it's essential to choose to live in a relatively expensive area. Some of the most affordable cities in the country include:

-Sioux Falls, South Dakota

-Madison, Wisconsin

-Spartanburg, South Carolina

-Ogden, Utah

-Fayetteville, Arkansas

While an individual making $18 an hour may be able to live in a more expensive area, they will find that their money doesn't go very far. In general, living in a rural area will most likely be a lot cheaper than living in a bigger city.

Creating A Budget

All individuals should create a budget, but it is essential for those making $18 an hour. This is because they probably won't have much extra money each month, and they need to be mindful about where all of their money is going. 

After all their fixed expenses are paid, they need to set aside a certain amount for food and entertainment. It's also imperative that they put some money aside for emergencies. Even if it's just a tiny amount of money, it will add up if they are diligent about saving it each month.

Many popular budgets include a zero-based budget, the 50/30/20 budget, the envelope system, and Dave Ramsey's Budget. Once you can start to budget your money, you can find places to save some of the leftover cash. 

Getting Creative With Housing

A lot of people wonder if they will be able to buy a house making $18 an hour. Fortunately, they may be able to if their debt-to-income ratio is low. However, they will probably find that things like their mortgage, insurance, taxes, and home repairs eat up much of their income. This is why many people choose to get creative with their housing. They may do things like:

-Finding a roommate to split expenses

-Buying a mobile home as opposed to a traditional one

-Living in an RV

-House Hacking

If a person can get creative with their housing, they may be able to lower their monthly expenses so much that it feels like they are making a lot more than $18 an hour. It might not always be pleasant to live with a roommate or in a smaller dwelling, but the savings may be significant enough that it's worth the inconvenience.

Keeping Food Costs As Low As Possible

Besides housing, many individuals find that their most significant expense is food. Fortunately, they may be able to keep their food costs as low as possible by getting creative. They can plant a garden to save on produce or shop at discount stores to get specific items for a fraction of the cost. Those who want to make their $18 an hour go further will also need to shop sales and learn to use coupons for many of their food purchases.

Finding deals on food and cooking at home can bring in massive savings for those making just $18 an hour. Try to do your best to make some savings happen. 

Not Having Debt

If an individual finds that they don't have enough money to pay their bills because they make $18 an hour, they may rack up credit card debt or take out a personal loan. However, this can make things more difficult because they will also have to pay back the interest on the borrowed money. This is why it's best to be frugal and save as much money as possible, so they don't incur any debt.

A Sample Budget

You may be asking yourself how exactly can someone live on $18 an hour. We created a sample budget for those that work full time:

-Monthly Income

Approximately $2,292 after taxes



-Transportation Expenses












As you can see, living off of $18 an hour is possible as long as you keep your living expenses low and stay within your budget. By keeping costs close to the budget mentioned above, an individual can save around $2,300 a year despite only making $18 an hour.

Jobs That Pay $18 An Hour

For those who want to make at least $18 an hour without going to college, there are quite a few different jobs available. These include:

-Personal Assistant



-Maintenance Worker

-Warehouse Clerk

-Customer Support Representative

-Delivery Driver

Many individuals can get these types of jobs with just a high school diploma and limited experience. Because many companies are desperate to fill their vacant positions, they may hire individuals with no experience right on the spot.

What To Do If $18 An Hour Isn't Enough

While many people can live off $18 an hour, it can be challenging to pay for things like vacations, retirement, or home repairs. This is why many people look for ways to bring in some extra money without having to quit their full-time job. Side gigs include:

-Walking dogs

-Cleaning houses


-Ride-share services

-Selling items online

These side gigs don't always pay a lot, but they are an easy way to bring in some extra cash without having to devote much time to them.

Final Thoughts:

Working for $18 an hour may not seem like a lot of money, but many people can live a decent life if they can work full-time. Over time, you might be able to ask for a raise or move on to a job that pays more. However, until that happens, you may be able to live very well on just $18 an hour. 

The key is to live within your means, cut back on living expenses and make and follow a realistic budget to know where all of your money is going.

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