So you’ve taken on a new job. The job description promised a competitive salary. It turns out to be about $50,000 a year, which isn’t too shabby - perhaps more than you expected for this kind of job. Looks like this job will be paying you okay for now! Right?


Well, that’s jumping to conclusions. Sure, there are plenty of other things to think about when it comes to your job aside from money. But let’s not play games here: money is a major concern when it comes to accepting a job offer. The vast majority of people are really only at a particular job because of the money.


These are the things you need to keep in mind when assessing how well you’re being paid.


Basic salary


This one’s the obvious one. But it’s not the only thing you should keep in mind. Even if you’ve managed to negotiate a high basic salary, you need to consider other factors.




How much is this job actually going to cost you? I’ve certainly been in a position where, soon after getting a higher-paying job, I actually found I was getting less to spend at the end of the month. Why? Because my job was in the city and travelling to it cost me a fortune. Travel costs should be considered as part and parcel of your pay estimation.







Are you being offered a company car? That’s going to put a big dent in the aforementioned travel costs. And if you can use it for personal matters, as some companies do allow, then you may find yourself saving a bunch of money there, too. You may also get things like memberships to local gyms, though how much that is really worth to you should rest on, y’know, how much you like gyms.


Retirement and other savings schemes


To what extent will your employer contribute to savings schemes? How much of your immediate paycheck will be sacrificed? Even if you’re in your early twenties, you need to bear this in mind. Of course, some of this will be in your hands, too. For example, you will probably have control over aspects of something like a super fund. You could choose what company to collaborate with in order to aid that fund. Nationwide Super are an example of a super fund company you could work with.







How much you plan to take this into account will depend on how willing you are to work overtime. If you value your time away from work too much, then you probably don’t care. If you will inevitably work overtime, then it’s very important. One thing to remember, however, is that a good overtime rate shouldn’t be used by an employer to justify lackluster pay in other areas. That’s basically blackmailing you into doing overtime for them.


The taxman

Yep, you need to worry about this dark beast. I’ve been in situations where I’ve hit a new tax bracket and ended up paying so much tax that my take-home was less than when my salary was lower. Extremely unfun, to say the least.