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Old 12-09-2010, 11:29 AM
 
77 posts, read 166,266 times
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I am currently making low $80s in Texas and have recently got a job offer in the Bay area in the low $100s. It is about a 24% hike.

I have a Master's degree in engineering and 4 years of work experience.

Two questions:

1) Is this a fair salary for someone with my background?

2) Online salary calculators show a person making $100k in CA vs somebody making $80k in Texas will only bring home ~$600 per month more. So is maintaining the same standard of living out of the question?
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Old 12-09-2010, 11:34 AM
 
Location: roaming gnome
12,395 posts, read 14,864,421 times
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The average tech salary for somebody in Silicon Valley is 147K all things considered.

running calculator...

The cost of living in San Francisco, CA is 86.6% higher than in Houston, TX. Therefore, you would have to earn a salary of $149,262 to maintain your current standard of living.

Employers in San Francisco, CA typically pay 20.1% more than employers in Houston, TX. Therefore, if you take the same type of job in the same type of company in San Francisco, CA you are likely to earn $96,108.

Hope that helps. I would say it is accurate having lived in the Bay Area and looking at jobs there...

Assuming you are at 82K ... your 24% pay hike takes you to 101, 680... Seems they called it pretty accurately, you'll see about 40-50K drop in disposable income at your salary.

But, you'll also be in the Bay Area... for some people that means a lot, for others it would be a nightmare. Not sure what you want and it is no secret that it is more expensive than Texas, or anywhere else for that matter outside of Manhattan.

Houston isn't that bad, if I were in your situation I would probably stay there in the 80's. Another 40K a year in disposable income/savings is a lot.

Last edited by grapico; 12-09-2010 at 12:01 PM..
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Old 12-09-2010, 01:00 PM
 
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The taxes and cost of living are so much higher in the Bay Area that I fear you would actually be making less money when adjusting for everything. But, it may be a good opportunity to eventually earn more money however. Tough call.
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:08 PM
 
Location: roaming gnome
12,395 posts, read 14,864,421 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iwonderwhy2124 View Post
The taxes and cost of living are so much higher in the Bay Area that I fear you would actually be making less money when adjusting for everything. But, it may be a good opportunity to eventually earn more money however. Tough call.
he'd definitely have less money.
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:26 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
8,825 posts, read 23,242,151 times
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Of course it depends on what you spend your money on, but CA is a known tax "hell" while TX is pretty much the opposite.

You would be hard pressed to have as much house in CA for that salary.

Kind of boils down to if the job would be a better opportunity, do you like Texas, do you think you would like CA?

I personally would not move to CA period, the high cost of land/housing, the crowding, and the left-liberal politics of most of the state just make it a no-brainer for me. But that's for me, not necessarily for you.

Bay Area weather is more to my taste than Houston, though.
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:32 PM
 
Location: Chicago area
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I agree and it is a shame. There are tons of biotech jobs out there that I would consider, however, the cost of living and taxes mean that even if I made significantly more I'd be living in abject poverty compared to IL. Also, dealing with the crowding and out of control govt there would drive me crazy (IL's failed govt is a problem too but at least here the areas away from Chicago moderate things a bit) As a result, I've written off the idea of moving to CA. Not to mention the risk of earthquakes and other natural disasters.
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:34 PM
 
77 posts, read 166,266 times
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The $80k and the $100k numbers are the base salary. At the new job I'll be eligible for 15% bonus vs 10% at my current job. Also the new employer has agreed to fully take care of my relocation to CA including house hunting trip, moving stuff in the house, cars etc.

We are also moving to CA because of better job opportunities for my wife (who is in IT). Also we both plan to do our MBAs and there are better business schools in the Bay Area compared to Houston.

So will this kind of tip the scale in favor of CA?
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:45 PM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,362 posts, read 55,867,493 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saintforlife View Post
The $80k and the $100k numbers are the base salary. At the new job I'll be eligible for 15% bonus vs 10% at my current job. Also the new employer has agreed to fully take care of my relocation to CA including house hunting trip, moving stuff in the house, cars etc.

We are also moving to CA because of better job opportunities for my wife (who is in IT). Also we both plan to do our MBAs and there are better business schools in the Bay Area compared to Houston.

So will this kind of tip the scale in favor of CA?

Where do you want to live? Where are your families? Where are you most comfortable? Will you miss one place over the other? Where is "home"?
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Old 12-09-2010, 02:54 PM
 
77 posts, read 166,266 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles View Post
Where do you want to live? Where are your families? Where are you most comfortable? Will you miss one place over the other? Where is "home"?
We want to live somewhere in Milpitas, North San Jose or Santa Clara. My wife and I are from India, we are both engineers and we both want to do our MBAs in one of the Bay Area business schools. So we think we will feel right at home in the Bay Area. We have a couple of cousins in Texas, my wife's sister lives in Atlanta and our parents are back home in India. There is nothing that we will miss in Texas really.
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Old 12-09-2010, 03:08 PM
 
Location: roaming gnome
12,395 posts, read 14,864,421 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by saintforlife View Post
The $80k and the $100k numbers are the base salary. At the new job I'll be eligible for 15% bonus vs 10% at my current job. Also the new employer has agreed to fully take care of my relocation to CA including house hunting trip, moving stuff in the house, cars etc.

We are also moving to CA because of better job opportunities for my wife (who is in IT). Also we both plan to do our MBAs and there are better business schools in the Bay Area compared to Houston.

So will this kind of tip the scale in favor of CA?
That is assuming you get in to the business schools there, i.e. Stanford/Berkeley I am guessing is what you are referring to.

Rice is certainly no slouch, and easier to get into... You could also do weekend mba in UT - Austin

I am not so sure about the better opportunities in CA... I think you are probably in one of the best areas right now...

Bay Area is nice and all but don't get caught up in the grass is always greener on the other side.

You have a sure job now that knows you, for a nice salary. What happens if you get out there and you get laid off? Which is always a possibility if you are working the SF/Silicon Valley circuit. Absolutely notorious for IT/Engineering layoff sweeps... but also booms... It is certainly *risky* compared to Houston, just keep that in mind.

If you are concerned with money/salary/career growth I'd stay in Houston honestly...
You would need some other kind of pluses to sway you for CA, such as liberal politics, outdoors, lifestyle, weather... b/c $ is not one of them...that is a lose lose situation usually esp if you are coming from TX, and especially that you are going there now, vs somebody who moved there in the 70s/80s and owns property already.
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