$12 an Hour is How Much a Year? Hovering Near Minimum Wage
This post may contain affiliate links, which helps us to continue providing relevant content and we receive a small commission at no cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Please read the full disclosure here.
We are going to under the cover and discover $12 an hour is how much per year.
For most Americans, this is hovering near minimum wage.
Let’s get this straight… This is not a livable wage.
If you are in high school or college and have support from your parents, then this is great spending money for you.
However, if you are making it on your own, $12 per hour will not make ends meet each month.
For most people, being at minimum wage is common and the goal is to make your way up the payscale and quickly!
In this post, we’re going to detail exactly what $12 an hour is how much a year. Also, we are going to break it down to know how much is made per month, bi-weekly, per week, and daily.
That will help you immensely with how you spend your money. Because too many times the hard-earned cash is brought home, but there is no actual plan for how to spend that money.
When living close to minimum wage, you must know how to manage money wisely.
More than likely, you are living paycheck to paycheck and struggling to survive to the next paycheck. Take a deep breath and make this minimum wage just a season.
The ultimate goal is to make the most of your hourly wage with inspirations to make more money.
If that is something you want too, then keep reading. You are in the right place.
$12 an Hour is How Much a Year?
When we ran all of our numbers to figure out how much is $12 per hour is as an annual salary, we used the average working day of 40 hours a week.
40 hours x 52 weeks x $12 = $24960
$24960 is the gross annual salary with a $12 per hour wage.
Breakdown Of 12 Dollars An Hour Is How Much A Year
Typically, the average work week is 40 hours and you can work 52 weeks a year. Take 40 hours times 52 weeks and that equals 2,080 working hours. Then, multiple the hourly salary of $12 times 2,080 working hours, and the result is $24,960.
That number is the gross income before taxes, insurance, 401K, or anything else is taken out. Net income is how much you deposit into your bank account.
Work Part Time?
But you may think, oh wait, I’m only working part time. So if you’re working part time, the assumption is working 20 hours a week at $12 an hour.
Only 20 hours per week. Then, take 20 hours times 52 weeks and that equals 1,040 working hours. Then, multiple the hourly salary of $12 times 1,040 working hours, and the result is $12480.
How Much is $12 Per Month?
On average, the monthly amount would average $2,080.
Annual Amount of $24000 ÷ 12 months = $2080 per month
Since some months have more days and fewer days like February, you can expect months with more days to have a bigger paycheck. Also, this can be heavily influenced by how often you are paid and on which days you get paid.
Work Part Time?
Only 20 hours per week. Then, the monthly amount would average $1040.
How Much is $12 per Hour Per Week
This is a great number to know! How much do I make each week? When I roll out of bed and do my job, what can I expect to make at the end of the week?
Once again, the assumption is 40 hours worked.
40 hours x $12 = $480 per week.
Work Part Time?
Only 20 hours per week. Then, the weekly amount would be $240.
How Much is $12 per Hour Bi-Weekly
For this calculation, take the average weekly pay of $480 and double it.
$480 per week x 2 = $960
Also, the other way to calculate this is:
40 hours x 2 weeks x $12 an hour = $960
Work Part Time?
Only 20 hours per week. Then, the bi-weekly amount would be $480.
How Much is $12 Per Hour Per Day
This depends on how many hours you work in a day. For this example, we are going to use an eight hour work day.
8 hours x $12 per hour = $96 per day.
If you work 10 hours a day for four days, then you would make $120 per day. (10 hours x $12 per hour)
Work Part Time?
Only 4 hours per day. Then, the daily amount would be $48.
$12 Per Hour is…
|$12 per Hour – Full Time||Total Income|
|Yearly Salary (52 weeks)||$24,960|
|Yearly Wage (50 weeks)||$24,000|
|Monthly Wage (173 hours)||$2,080|
|Weekly Wage (40 Hours)||$490|
|Bi-Weekly Wage (80 Hours)||$960|
|Daily Wage (8 Hours)||$96|
|Net Estimated Monthly Income||$1,588|
Paid Time Off Earning 12 Dollars an Hour
Does your employer offer paid time off?
As an hourly, close to minimum wage employee, more than likely you will not get paid time off.
So, here are the scenarios for both cases.
For general purposes, we are going to assume you work 40 hours per week over the course of the year.
Case # 1 – With Paid Time Off
Most hourly employees, get two weeks of paid time off which is equivalent to 2 weeks of paid time off.
In this case, you would make $24960 per year.
This is the same as the example above for an annual salary making $12 per hour.
Case #2 – No Paid Time Off
Unfortunately, not all employers offer paid time off to their hourly employees. While that is unfortunate, it is best to plan for less income.
Life happens. There will be times you need to take time off for numerous reasons – sick time, handling an emergency, or even vacation.
So, let’s assume you take 2 weeks off without paid time off.
That means you would only work 50 weeks of the year instead of all 52 weeks. Take 40 hours times 50 weeks and that equals 2,000 working hours. Then, multiple the hourly salary of $12 times 2,000 working hours, and the result is $24,000.
40 hours x 50 weeks x $12 = $24000
You would average $96 per working day and nothing when you don’t work.
$12 an Hour is How Much a year After Taxes
Let’s be honest… Taxes can take up a big chunk of your paycheck. Thus, you need to know how taxes can affect your hourly wage.
This is why you always wondering why your take-home pay is so much less.
Also, every single person’s tax situation is different.
On the basic level, let’s assume a 12% federal tax rate and a 4% state rate. Plus a percentage is taken out for Social Security and Medicare (FICA) of 7.65%.
Gross Annual Salary: $24,960
- Federal Taxes of 12%: $2,995
- State Taxes of 4%: $998
- Social Security and Medicare of 7.65%: $1,909
$12 an Hour per Year after Taxes: $19,057
This would be your net annual salary after taxes.
To turn that back into an hourly wage, the assumption is working 2,080 hours.
$19057 ÷ 2080 hours = $9.16 per hour
After estimated taxes and FICA, you are netting $9.16 an hour. That is $2.84 an hour less than what you planned.
This is a very highlighted example and can vary greatly depending on your personal situation. Therefore, here is a great tool to help you figure out how much your net paycheck would be.
$12 an Hour Budget Example
You are probably wondering can I live on my own making 12 dollars an hour? How much rent can you afford on 12 an hour?
Using our Cents Plan Formula, this is the best case scenario on how to budget your $12 per hour paycheck.
When using these percentages, it is best to use net income because taxes must be paid.
In this example, above we calculated $12 an hour was $9.16 after taxes. That would average $1588 per month.
According to the Cents Plan Formula, here is the high level view of a $12 per hour budget:
- Basic Expenses of 50% = $794
- Save Money of 20% = $318
- Give Money of 10% = $159
- Fun Spending of 20% = $318
- Debt of 0% = $0
Obviously, that is not doable when living so close to minimum wage. So, you have to be strategic on ways to decrease your basic expenses and debt. Then, it will allow you more money to save and fun spending.
To further break down an example budget of $12 per hour, then using the ideal household percentages is extremely helpful.
recommended budget percentages based on $12 per hour wage:
|Category||Ideal Percentages||Sample Monthly Budget|
|Recreation / Entertainment||3-8%||$52|
|Debts||0% – Goal||$0|
|Government Tax (including Income Tatumx, Social Security & Medicare)||15-25%||$492|
|Total Gross Income||$2,080|
$12 an Hour Calculator
Now, you get to figure out how much you make based on your hours worked or if you make a wage between $12.01-12.99.
Here is a handy calculator to use if you make $12.60, $12.30, or $12.75 an hour.
Living on $12 Per Hour
Living close to minimum wage can be a very difficult situation.
Is it doable? Probably not for long.
You just have to be wiser (or frugal) with your money and how you spend the hard-earned cash you have been blessed with.
A lot of times when people are making under near the minimum wage mark, they feel like they are in this constant cycle that they can never keep up with (which completely makes sense it is hard!).
When your thoughts are constantly focused on how you are struggling to keep up with bills and expenses, that is all you focus on.
You need to realize that your mindset is everything.
This is what you say to yourself… Okay, I am making near minimum wage for now. I have aspirations and goals to increase how much I make. For now, I am going to make sure that I am able to live on my 12 dollars per hour. I’m going to try and avoid debt and payday loans at all costs.
Other Tips to Help You:
- Check your minimum wage for your state and city. You might find a higher minimum wage in a nearby city.
- Look to living in a lower cost of living area to stretch your money.
- Find ways to minizine your basic expenses.
- Thrive with a minimalist lifestyle.
- Decide if a roommate or moving back with your parents would help.
- Bike or walk to work.
In the next section, we will dig into ways to increase your income, but for now, you must focus on living on $12 an hour.
5 Ways to Increase Your Hourly Wage
This right here is the most important section of this post.
You need to figure out ways to increase your hourly income because I’m going to tell you…you deserve more. You do a good job and your value is higher than what your employers pay you.
Even an increase of 50 cents to $12.50 will add up over the year. Even better $13 an hour or $15 an hour!
1. Ask for a Raise
The first thing to do is ask for a raise. Walk right in and ask for a raise because you never know what the answer will be until you ask.
If you want the best tips on how specifically to ask for a raise and what the average wage is for somebody doing your job, then check out this book. In this book, the author gives you the exact way to increase your income. The purchase is worth it or go down to the library and check that book out.
2. Look for A New Job
Another way to increase your hourly wage is to look for a new job. Maybe a completely new industry.
It might be a total change for you, but many times, if you want to change your financial situation, then that starts with a career change. Maybe you’re stressed out at work. Making $12 an hour is too much for you and you’re not able to enjoy life, maybe changing jobs and finding another job may increase your pay, but it will also increase your quality of life.
3. Find a New Career
Because of student loans, too many employees feel like they are stuck in the career field they chose. They feel sucked into the job that they don’t like or have the potential they thought it would.
For many years, I was in the same situation until I decided to do a complete career change. I am glad I did. I have the flexibility that I needed in my life to do what I wanted when I needed to do it. Plus I am able to enjoy my entrepreneurial spirit.
4. Find Alternative Ways to Make Money
In today’s society, you need to find ways to make more money. Period.
There is no way to get around it. You need to find additional income outside a traditional nine to five position or typical 40-hour-a-week job. You will reach a point where you are maxed on what you can make in your current position or title. There may be some advancement to move forward, but in many cases, there just is not much room for growth.
So, you need to find a side hustle – another way to make money.
Do something that you enjoy, turn your hobby into a way to make money, turn something that you naturally do, and help others into a service business. In today’s society, the sky is the limit on how you can earn a freelancing income.
5. Earn Passive Income
The last way to increase your hourly wage is to start earning passive income.
This can be from a variety of ways including the stock market, real estate, online courses, book sales, etc. This is where the differentiation between struggling financially and being financially sound happens.
By earning money passively, you are able to do the things that you enjoy doing and not be loaded down, with having a job that you need to work, and a place that you have to go to. And you still make money doing nothing.
Here is an example:
You can start a brokerage account and start trading stocks for $50. You need to learn and take the one and only investing class I recommend. Learn how the market works, watch videos, and practice in a simulator before you start using your own money.
One gentleman started with $5,000 in his trading account and now has well over $75,000 in a year. Just from practice and being consistent, he has learned that passive income is the way for him to increase his income and also not be a slave to his job.
Tips to Live on $12 an Hour
In this last section, grasp these tips on how to live on $12 an hour. On our site, you can find lots of money saving tips to help stretch your income further.
Here are the most important tips to live on $12 an hour. Highlight these!
1. Spend Less Than you Make
First, you must learn to spend less than you make.
If not you will be caught in the debt cycle and that is not where you want to be. You will be consistently living paycheck to paycheck.
In order to break that dreadful cycle, it means your expenses must be less than your income.
And when I say income, it’s not the $12 an hour. As we talked about earlier in the post, there are taxes. The amount of taxes taken out of your paycheck is called your net income which is your home $12 an hour minus all the taxes, FICA, social security, and Medicare are taken out. That is your net income.
So, your net income has to be less than your net income.
2. Living Below Your Means
You need to be happy. And living on less can actually make you happier. Studies prove that less is better.
Finding contentment in life is one thing that is a struggle for most.
We are driven to want the new shiny toy, the thing next door, the stuff your friend or family member got. Our society has trained you that you need these things as well.
Have you ever taken a step back and looked at what you really need?
Once you are able to find contentment with life, then you are going to be set for the long term with your finances.
Here is our story on owning less stuff. We have been happier since.
3. Make Saving Money Fun
You need to make saving money fun. Period.
- It could be participating in a no spend challenge for the month.
- Check out the 200 envelope challenge (which is doable on your income)
- It could be challenging friends not to go to Target for a week.
- Maybe changing your habits and not picking up takeout and planning meals.
- Whatever it is challenge yourself.
Find new ways of saving money and have fun with it.
Even better, get your family and kids involved in the challenge to save money. Tell them the reason why you are saving money and this is what you are doing.
Here are 101 things to do with no money. Free activities without costing you a dime. That is an amazing resource for you and you will never be bored.
And you will learn a lot of things in life you can do for free. Personally, some of the best ones are getting outside and enjoying some fresh air.
4. Make More Money
If you want if you do not settle for less, then find ways to make more money. If you want more out of life, then increase your income.
You need to be an advocate for yourself.
Find ways to make more money.
It could be a side hustle, a second job, asking for a raise, going to school to change careers, or picking up extra hours.
Whatever path you take, that’s fine. Just find ways to make more money. Period.
5. No State Taxes
Paying taxes is one option to increase what you take home in each paycheck.
These are the states that don’t pay state income taxes on wages:
- New Hampshire
- South Dakota
It is very interesting if you take into account the amount of state taxes paid compared to a state with income taxes.
Also, if you live in one of the higher taxed states, then you may want to reconsider moving to a lower cost of living area. The higher taxes income tax states include California, Hawaii, New Jersey, Oregon, Minnesota, the District of Columbia, New York, Vermont, Iowa, and Wisconsin. These states tax income somewhere between 7.65% – 13.3%.
6. Stick to a Budget
You need to learn how to start a budget. We have tons budgeting resources for you.
While creating a budget is great, you need to learn how to use one.
You do not have to budget down to every last penny.
You need to make sure your expenses are less than your income and you are creating sinking funds for those irregular expenses.
- Biweekly Budget Template: How To Create A Biweekly Budget
- Zero Based Budget: A Guide to Zero Based Budgeting
7. Pay Off Debt Quickly
The amount that you pay interest on debt is absolutely absurd.
Unfortunately, that is how many of these companies make their money from the interest you pay on debt.
If you are paying 5% to even 20-21% or higher, you need to find ways to lower that debt quickly.
Here’s a debt calculator to help you. Figure out your debt free date.
Make that paying off debt fast is your target and main focus. I can tell you from personal experience, it was not until week paid off our debt that we finally rounded the corner financially. Once our debt was paid off, we could finally be able to save money. Set money aside in separate bank accounts and pay for cash for things.
It took us working hard to pay off debt. We needed persistence and patience while we had setbacks in our debt free journey.
Jobs that Pay $12 an Hour
You can always find jobs that pay $12 per hour. Polish up that smile, fill out the application and be prepared with your interview skills.
Job Search Hint: Always send a written follow-up thank you note for your interview. That will help you get noticed and remembered.
First, look at the cities that require a minimum wage in their cities. That is the best place to start to find jobs that are going to pay higher than the federal minimum wage rate. Many of the cities are moving towards this model so, target and look for jobs in those areas.
Possible Ideas for Jobs Paying $12 an hour:
- Back of the house restaurant staff
- Landscape Laborer
- Retail jobs
- Virtual Assistant – learn how to get started now!
- Paraeducators at schools
- Farm help
- Warehouse workers
- Call center
- Hotel Housekeeper
- Delivery driver
- Product demonstrator
- Busser at restaurants
companies paying $12 an hour
- Great Wolf Lodge
- Olive Garden
$12 Per Hour Annual Salary
In this post, we detailed 12 an hour is how much a year. Plus all of the variables that can impact your net income. This is something that you can live off.
How much is 12 dollars an hour annually…
This is under $30000 per year and you need to make at least $38k a year.
In this post, we highlighted ways to increase your income as well as tips for living off your wage.
Use the sample budget as a starting point with your expenses.
You will have to be savvy and wise with your hard-earned income. But, with a plan, anything is possible!
Quick Ways to Make Money
Spend your time wisely and make money doing it. All of these quick ways to make money are simple and easy to do!
Swagbucks: Coupons, Paid Online Surveys & Free Gift Cards
Save money with coupons, promo codes, sales and cashback when you shop for clothes, electronics, travel, groceries, gifts & homeware. Get free gift cards and cash for the everyday things you do online.
Rover.com: Book Dog Boarding, Dog Walking and More
Get paid to play with pets! Earn money doing something you love.
Rover makes it easy and promotes you to the nation’s largest network of pet owners.
Rakuten: Shop. Earn. Get Cash Back.
Shop smarter with Rakuten: Earn Cash Back at 2500+ stores or shop the marketplace for electronics, clothing, games, sporting goods, and more.
Fetch Rewards: The Easiest Way to Save
Fetch Rewards is a free grocery savings app that rewards you just for snapping pictures of your receipts. That’s really it.
Free rewards on groceries on thousands of products every day, no matter where you get your groceries. Just scan your receipts and cash in!
Get rewarded. Supercharge your debit and credit cards.
Drop is the free app that's giving out millions in cash rewards for the spending you do every day.
Ibotta: Cash Back on your Favorite Brands
Whether you’re buying groceries, chowing down on takeout, or giving your wardrobe a serious upgrade, start with Ibotta and earn cash back on thousands of in-store and online offers.