20 Dollars an Hour is How Much a Year? Is it Enough to Live?

Last updated on February 18th, 2024 at 06:13 am

In this post, you’ll learn how much 20 dollars an hour per year and whether can you live on that income.

The prices of goods and services are rising each year in the United States. 

But the income is still there with very little to no raise. 

Within some areas, the living expenses are too high like in New York and San Francisco. 

Facing these conditions you’re earning $20 an hour wage can help you live a comfortable life or not.

How about affording family expenses and buying a house? And what jobs pay $20 or more per hour?

All of this is going to be discussed in this post. So read it till the end. 

20 dollars an hour is how much a year?

Normally there are 260 working days in a year assuming a 5-day full-time workweek. So there are 52 workweeks in a year which means 260 work days.

For calculating the total yearly income at 20 dollars an hour let’s calculate the total working hours per year for 2022. 

Here it is: 

Total working hours in a year = 260 working days X 8 hours per day = 2080 hours 

That means you work 2080 hours per year assuming that there is no unpaid leave, holidays, vacations, and other sick leaves. 

Now for calculating the total yearly income, you need to multiply the total hours by $20 per hour. 

Here is the actual formula:

Total yearly income = total working hours per year X rate per hour = 2080 X $20 = $41,600/year

So your total yearly income at $20 per hour will be $41,600 before tax. This means it’s your gross income without paying taxes.

Now in case you get 2 weeks of unpaid work every year. Then the working weeks fall from 52 to 50 per year. 

Here are your total earnings for 50 weeks per year:

Total yearly income for 250 days = 250X8 = 2000 hours X $20= $40,000 per year

So your income falls from $41,600 to just $40,000 per year before tax. 

Now let’s calculate the yearly income for part-time work after that we calculate the after-tax income for both. 

How much is 20 dollars an hour working part-time?

On average the part-time workers spend 5 hours per day. Assuming that you work for 5 working days while eliminating 2 weekends. 

Here is how much you earn per year:

Total yearly part-time hours = 260X5= 1300 hours

Total yearly income part-time = 1300 X 20= $26,000/year

Working five hours a day part-time your yearly income will be $26,000 per year. 



20 dollars an hour is how much a year after taxes?

Before calculating the tax on your income. First, you need to understand how many different types of taxes are applied to your income per year. 

So here is the list of taxes that your income may face: 

  1. Federal income tax: The US government has a progressive tax system. The rate increases as your income increases. Here are the federal tax rate and income brackets:
  2. State income tax: The state you’re living in also taxes your yearly income. But here you have the advantage of zero tax in some states. Others charge a flat rate and some have variable tax rates. Here is the list of all US states with their income tax rates:
  3. Social security: If you’re an employee then 6.2% of your income is charged as social security while as a self-employed you need to pay 12.4% per year. But on income equal to or larger than $147,000 per year.
  4. Medicare health insurance: As an employee, you are charged a flat rate of 1.45% per year while 2.90% for self-employed people. 

Let’s assume that you’re single and live in Texas City where the state tax is zero and local tax is also zero. So using the Smart Assets tax calculator here is how much you’re going to pay:

After-tax salary = $41,600 – $41,600 * 15% = $35,360

Taking into account all the taxes you get left with $35,360 in after-tax income at a $20-an-hour wage rate.

Let’s take another scenario where you want to work part-time for 5 hours per day at this rate. For part-time income which becomes $26,000 before tax from the above calculation.

Now here is the after-tax income:

After-tax part-time income= $26,000 = $26,000 * 12.41% = $22,773.4

You pay $3,226.6 in tax and receive a take-home pay of $22,773.4 as a part-time worker.

How much is 20 dollars an hour semiannually?

There are 26 weeks in 6 months. Now considering 40 hours per week for full-time employees there are 1040 full-time work hours. Now here is the actual calculation:

Before-tax income= 26 weeks * 40 hours * $20 per hour = $20,800 

Now divide the yearly after-tax salary by 2 and you get the semiannual after-tax salary.

After-tax salary = $35,360 / 2 = $17,680

As a part-time worker working 5 hours per day or 25 hours per week, your total working hours become 650.

Before-tax part-time income = 26 weeks * 25 hours * $20 per hour = $13,000

Now again divide the above yearly part-time after-tax income with 2 and you get another value.

After-tax part-time income= $22,773.4 / 2 = $11,386.7 

Hence, as a full-time employee, you earn $20,800 in gross and $17,680 in after-tax. On the other hand, as a part-time employee, you earn $13,000 in gross while $11,386.7 in after-tax.

How much is 20 dollars an hour quarterly?

Calculating quarterly income is also simple. Divide the semiannual income by 2 or divide the yearly income by 4 to get the required answer. Do this with both before-tax and after-tax income from your full-time and part-time work. 

Full-time salary = $41,600 / 4 = $10,400

As a part-time worker here is the breakdown:

Part-time salary = $26,000 / 4 = $6,500

Hence, as a full-time worker, you’ll make $10,400 per quarter while as a part-time employee, you earn $6,500 per quarter.

How much is 20 dollars an hour per month?

The working days in a month vary between 19 to 22 days if you work 5 days a week. While they may go up to 26 or 27 in countries like Pakistan where most institutions work 6 days a week.

Considering working days 21 per month here is the calculation:

Before-tax income = 21 days X 8 hours/day X $20 per hour = $3360 per month

Before-tax part-time = 21 days X 5 hours/day X $20 per hour = $2100 per month

How much are 20 dollars an hour biweekly?

There are 10 working days in two weeks. That means 10 X 8 = 80  working hours biweekly. 

So here is how much you earn $20 per hour biweekly: 

Biweekly income = 80 X $20 = $1600 full time

Biweekly income = 50 X $20 = $1000 part-time

Now let’s go to the next section.

How much are 20 dollars an hour weekly?

In a single week, only 5 working days are present starting from Monday to Friday. Working 8 hours a day full-time and 5 hours a day part-time here is the before-tax income for a week:

Weekly income = 5 days X 8 hours X $20 = $800 full time

For calculating the part-time income per week with 5 hours of work per day here is the calculator: 

Weekly income = 5 X 5 X $20 = $500 part-time

So you earn $800 working full-time while $500 working part-time per week. 

20 dollars an hour is how much per day?

There are 8 hours of work full time in a day. If your hourly rate is $20 then here is how much you earn per day:

Daily income = 8 (working hours) X $20 (hourly rate) = $160 

For part-time work for 5 hours per day here is how much you earn:

Daily income = 5 (part-time hours) X $20 (hourly rate) = $100

You earn $160 per day for full-time work and $100 per day for part-time work. 


Here is a summary of 20 per hour wage for full-time workers at different time frames:

Time FrameWorking HoursGross Income
Tight Finance

Here is a summary of 20 an hour’s salary as a part-time worker for different time frames:

Time FrameWorking HoursGross Income

Hourly salary to annual salary calculator

If you want to calculate the values for any other hourly rate then you can use this calculator:

How to make a budget for 20 dollars a hour salary?

The after-tax income calculated from the yearly full-time income is $35,360. Now if we divide it by 12 then monthly after-tax income will be $$2,946.67 and let’s assume it is $2,947.

Note: The following budget is made assuming that a person lives in a less costly region of the USA. Your actual budget can be different.

Here is your monthly budget:

Property Insurance$50
Property Taxes$50
Car payment$95
Food staples$200
Fresh produce$200
Household items$50
Utility Bill
Health Insurance
Monthly premium$85
Streaming services$16
Dining out$70
Total Expenses$2,128
Remaining Income$819
Emergency fund$300
Retirement fund$200

Related Post: How to Create a Personal Budget [6 Easy Steps] PLUS Template

What are the jobs that pay a $20-an-hour wage?

There are three different types of jobs available that pay $20 an hour. They don’t require a degree or experience. You can also get them part-time as well.  

  • Programmer
  • Realtor
  • Bookkeeping
  • Photographer
  • Handyman
  • Virtual Assistant
  • Proofreader
  • Content Writer
  • Copywriting
  • Small Business Marketer
  • Online Tutor
  • Website Tester
  • Transcriptionist
  • Customer Service Representative
  • Landscaper
  • Warehouse Associate
  • Independent Delivery Driver
  • Social Media Manager
  • Real Estate Agent
  • Affiliate Marketer
  • Graphic Designer
  • Test Preparation Teacher
  • Translator
  • Blogger
  • YouTuber
  • Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon)
  • Retail Arbitrage
  • Drop Shipping

All these jobs need no degree, with little to no experience, and you can do them part-time. The $20 is not a benchmark instead, some of these jobs pay more than $20 per hour like $22 or $24. So you can make really good money.

What types of taxes do you pay on 20 dollars a hour salary?

There are four main types of taxes you need to pay on your income. 

They include: 

  • Federal tax: this is a progressive tax system and as your income increases the tax also increases.
  • State tax: the individual states in which you live also charge tax. Some of them charge a flat tax rate, while others have varying rates including high and low. Some states are tax-free and you don’t have to pay like Alaska.
  • Social Security tax: they deduct 6.2% tax from you and 6.2% from your employer if you do a job. But if you’re self-employed then you pay 12.4%. 
  • Medicare tax: it’s a flat rate of 1.45% for employees where the other half is paid by your employer. While as a self-employed person, you pay the full 2.9%. 

In addition to that, there is a sales tax on goods and services you purchase. The states have an average sales tax of 5.09% with 18 states below this average and some with zero tax at all. 

How much are 20 dollars an hour after taxes by US states?

As I early mentioned that you’re required to pay state tax depending on how much is charged. But here states fall into three categories that are states with varying tax rates, flat tax rates, and zero tax rates. 

Here is a list of all the US states by the tax rate and what your income will be after deducting it: 

How to live on 20 dollars an hour’s salary?

Living on a 20-dollar-an-hour salary depends on your area. There are states where prices are low and affordable, while some states like San Francisco are expensive. 

But using below tips and tricks you can use to live on that income:

  • Make a budget and follow it
  • Create a shopping list to avoid impulse buying
  • Cancel online subscription to avoid money wastage
  • Lower vacations and private parties
  • Avoid drinking alcohol and eating at expensive restaurants
  • Cook food at home and don’t order it

Your life becomes a lot easier by following these tips. And if you’re a single person then living on that income isn’t difficult. 

How to earn more than 20 dollars an hour?

Yes, you can earn more than $20 per hour. Here is how:

  • Ask your boss for a raise in salary
  • Do a part-time job 
  • Start a business offline or online
  • Change your job and join a new one with higher pay

Doing a part-time job and starting a personal business are great tips. If you’re a student and can’t do a part-time job or business then quit your existing job and start a new high-paying one.

What tools do you need to live on $20 an hour?

To live on this income you should have budgeting tools like YNAB, Mint, or Personal Capital. If you don’t want to use software then have a simple Google Spreadsheet budgeting template. You can also use Trim to cut unnecessary subscriptions and the Prism app to avoid missing any future bill payments.

Is $20 an hour suitable for teenagers?

The average teenager’s wage in the US is $18.52 per hour but some jobs pay way less than that. So if a teenager is living with parents and studying in a school or college then earning a $20 per hour wage is a good option. It can easily cover many of his expenses and lower college fees as well. 

But teenagers don’t stick to this salary for a long time instead switch to other jobs that pay $23, $25, and even $30 or more per hour. This helps them accumulate emergency funds, pay student loans, and lower the financial burden on their parents. 

Can you purchase a house with 20 dollars a hour wage?

Purchasing a house with a $20 per hour salary may or may not be possible. It depends on the area or state you live in and the prices of houses in that area. If you pay a big down payment and your monthly mortgage payments don’t exceed the $1000 limit then it’s possible. Otherwise, if you barely meet monthly expenses then it’s impossible. 

Here are the housing prices by state:  

StateTypical home value, June 2023
District of Columbia$722,619
New Hampshire$470,958
New Jersey$507,923
New Mexico$293,540
New York$425,011
North Carolina$321,908
North Dakota$261,931
Rhode Island$444,716
South Carolina$287,956
South Dakota$297,804
West Virginia$158,173

Can you live off of 20 dollars an hour wage?

This depends on two factors. First, the area you live in, and second whether you’re single or have a family of 2 to 5 people. 

If you’re living in expensive areas like New York and San Francisco then living on a $20 per hour wage as a single will be an effort. Having a family makes it impossible to live on that low wage.

On the other hand, if you live in less expensive states like Mississippi and Alabama then you can easily afford expenses. But still, for bearing family expenses you need to increase your income. 

Is 20 dollars an hour a good salary?

Yes for a teenager it’s a good salary. As an adult with a family, you must earn more than that to survive in ever ever-increasing price environment. 

If you live in an expensive state or city or you’ve dependants like a family of 2,3 or 4 people then it isn’t enough. In that situation, you should look for higher-paying options or start any side hustle like part-time work or business to make ends meet.

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers

Here are some important questions and answers you find helpful:

How does your yearly salary compare with others?

The median household income in the United States is $71,538. In comparison to this amount, your income of $41,600 at $20 an hour is 58.15% of the US median. That is a great difference and your income is much lower than the national average. 

Here is the state-wise comparison of your yearly income at $20 an hour: 

StatesMedian Household Income
District of Columbia$90,640
New Hampshire$88,841
New Jersey$88,559
Rhode Island$74,982
South Dakota$73,893
New York$72,920
North Dakota$68,882
North Carolina$62,891
South Carolina$62,542
New Mexico$53,463
West Virginia$46,836

Here you’re very close to Mississippi, Arkansas, and West Virginia in ratio. But as you go from the bottom up then your ratio decreases and the difference increases. Overall your income at 20 dollars rate is lower than all of the state’s median income per year. 

What’s the total number of working days in 2022?

The year 2022 started on Saturday, January 1, and ended on Saturday, December 31. During this period there are 105 days as weekends. So 260 working days are left if you neglect the other holidays like easter, Christmas, and any other international day leave. 

So in short 260 working days are in the year 2022. If you take 2 weeks of vacation leave or random leaves in a year then these working days decrease to just 250 days. 

What is the salary of a US worker per hour on average?

The US workers get an average of $31.95 per hour which is an increase of 0.3% in May 2022 from $31.85 per hour. While the minimum average is $7.25 per hour set by the US government. 

How much is $20 an hour after taxes?

Your yearly income after tax at $20 per hour will be $36,813.5 considering that state tax is zero. If you deduct state tax then it will be lower. 

What if you get 2 weeks of paid vacation or take no break?

If you take 2 weeks of paid vacation or no break at all then your working weeks per year will be 52 or 2080 working hours. Now multiplying it by $20 per hour the year before tax income becomes $41,600 and after tax will be $36,813.5 per year. 


While starting your job career earning that much income is a better choice.

But it’s as good to help you live in an expensive area or with family.

To achieve your financial goals like buying a house, or car, paying student loans, and living a comfortable life you need to earn more.

So try to always switch to better opportunities where you can earn $25, $30, or $50 per hour.

For living on $20 an hour you must make a budget and stick to it. Along with that don’t ignore emergency funds to meet unexpected needs.

I hope you find this blog helpful. If yes then share it with your social media followers.

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Ahmad Ali