Melbourne is one of the most coveted cities in Australia, with an enviable lifestyle. While it tops the list of the most liveable cities in the world, how you balance life in Melbourne depends on the financial choices you make for yourself.
What is a good salary in Melbourne? A good income in Melbourne is about AU$110,000 – AU$150,000 before tax. A single employed person will need AU$597 per week (before tax, including rent) to live a decent life, not a lavish one. For a couple with two children, you’ll need twice as much. That’s about AU$4,692 to be able to survive without strain.
If you’ve been thinking about moving to Melbourne, you probably have a wealth of choices for the areas you’d like to pitch your tent. Honestly, if the number of immigrants in Australia is anything to go by, salaries in Australia are some of the best in the world, including in Melbourne.
Moreover, Melbourne has some of the best companies to work for, which is excellent for a city that attracts people seeking opportunities and growth. The cost of living in Melbourne may be high, but so is the salary.
Scaling high in Melbourne is possible; you only need to overcome the mental aspect. This article will look closely into the average and good wages in Melbourne by location, occupation, and experience level in 2022.
What is a good salary to live in Melbourne in 2022-2023?
A good salary to live in Melbourne starts from AU$100,000 before tax.
If you’re trying to compare the actual financial impact of Melbourne compared to other locations, compare the average pay related to its cost of living. According to Greedhead, a person living in Melbourne earns about AU$106,000 annually.
The current maximum may be higher, with the lowest average ranging from AU$26,700 to the highest at AU$472,000. This salary includes housing, transport, and other benefits.
Additional compensation is AU$3,000, ranging from AU$400 to AU$5,000. You can expect a starting salary package of AU$60-70K with a 9.5% minimum superannuation. For example, a graduate software engineer in Melbourne will earn AU$61,122.
Also read: What is a good salary in Australia?
Whether your salary is enough depends entirely on your financial commitments, your spending habits, the location of where you want to live, and the lifestyle you desire.
Ultimately, earning anything above AU$100,000 per year is considered an above-average salary in Melbourne. If you’re disciplined enough, you should live a decent life and save some money.
However, the most significant caveat lies in the kind of lifestyle you live, including your family responsibilities.
Generally, while an AU$100k salary in Melbourne is desirable by most people and would provide an adequate level of comfort for a single person, it would not allow the same lifestyle a family would expect on the same salary scale.
For a single-income family, the reality is that most households struggle to make ends meet due to the high costs of living. Here are some facts about work perspectives in Melbourne:
- Melbourne has a well-developed job market, making it a smooth experience even for unskilled workers to find work.
- Melbourne has a 5.4% unemployment rate which means there are plenty of opportunities for job seekers.
- There are about 50,000 business establishments in Melbourne.
- The living wage in Australia, Melbourne included, is set higher for workers with families than those without dependents.
- Families with children are entitled to other government support through targeted welfare payments.
- Melbourne has massive opportunities for highly skilled International workers.
A salary of AU$120,000 per year before tax should be enough to support a family of 3 in Melbourne modestly. This amount gives you about AU$7,344 to spend every month.
Some cost of living you can expect with that income:
|Housing||If you’re renting, you will need at least a 2 bedroom house, which should be about AU$500 per week in a good location.|
|Groceries||Food costs can be unbearable if you’re not keen on the good deals available. Groceries can range from AU$800 to AU$1,000 per month.|
|Health Insurance||On average, private insurance for an individual is only AU$166 per month. The general treatment cover is AU$850, and the hospital treatment cover is AU$2,000 per year.|
|Gas||Energy bills can be brutal during winter. Depending on the season, you may spend about AU$100/month on gas. It could be higher or lower.|
|Public transport||Public transport will set you back another AU$50 per week or AU$216 per month per person.|
|Shopping||You can afford to go out, shop for clothes, and eat out comfortably.|
|Extra-curricular activities||You can afford to take your child to extra-curricular activities such as music, sports, etc.|
|Childcare||If your family includes a small child, you will be required to pay AU$55 per day after the government rebate. At a minimum, this is about AU$275 a week or AU$1,200 a month.|
|Holiday||You can go on holiday like twice or thrice a year.|
|Total||About AU$5,000 – AU$6,000|
|Saving||You may be able to put away about AU$1,000 every month.|
While others’ situations may not necessarily apply to yours, people have different requirements for a comfortable lifestyle. You’ll be lucky to break even in Melbourne if you’re disciplined even after accounting for your weekly or monthly expenses.
With a near cult-like obsession with housing, transport, and lifestyle, living a comfortable and straightforward lifestyle will require some adjustments.
If you’re trying to keep your investments, savings, and accommodation separately, forget the city and pack to somewhere cheaper, outer Melbourne.
Example of a good salary in Melbourne
A good salary in Melbourne, which is considered above average, is about AU$110,000-AU$150,000 per year, depending on the industry.
Generally, when just starting your career in Melbourne, you should expect a salary of AU$60,000-AU$70,000. The national minimum wage is AU$772.60 per week or AU$40,175 per year for full-time workers, which may be sufficient if you have no dependents, unlike when you have a family.
Some of the typical salaries for jobs with a university degree across various industries in Melbourne:
|Industry||Annual gross salary (AU$)|
|Engineers & Technicians||226,100|
|Aviation & Shipping||158,000|
|Management & Business||154,900|
|Health care & Medical||147,800|
|Arts, Culture, Performance||133,100|
|Construction & Labor Workers||123,800|
|IT & Programming 11||123,700|
|Finance & Banking||118,000|
|Properties & Real estate||115,500|
|Agriculture & Fishing||115,400|
|Marketing, Sales, Purchase||115,200|
|Engineers & Technicians||113,700|
|Geography & Geodesy||107,400|
|Education & University||107,100|
|Organization & Coordination||107,000|
Here are some examples of average good salaries for various jobs in Melbourne:
- Doctor specialist: AU$300,200
- Other Engineer Career: AU$226,100
- Director: AU$221,900
- University Professor: AU$210,600
- General Manager: AU$205,700
- Construction Manager: AU$197,100
- Doctor: AU$175,600
- Lawyer: AU$175,200
- IT Manager: AU$165,200
- Human Resources Manager: AU$164,400
- Program Manager: AU$162,500
- Engineering Manager: AU$154,600
- Computer Architect: AU$152,500
- IT Project Manager: AU$151,400
- Consulting, Speaker: AU$146,400
- Construction Project Manager: AU$141,100
- Software Engineer: AU$136, 800
- Operations Manager: AU$132,100
- Other Automobile Career: AU$120,900
- Manager: AU$120,600
Here are some examples of salaries for various positions according to experience:
|Job||Years of experience||Annual salary (AU$)|
|Nutrition And Sport Science Consultant||4-8||80,000|
|Head Of Rewards||16-20||341,700|
|Senior Software Engineer||2-4||150,400|
|Building Energy Analyst||0-1||58,600|
|Chief Executive Officer||2-4||244,100|
If you have one of these top-end jobs, you’re likely at a reasonable upper-end estimate for someone living in Melbourne. Again, if you want to afford a pretty decent life in Melbourne, you need to earn more money which means working your way up the ladder.
Salaries in Melbourne
Based on a survey carried out for 826 salaries, an average employee earns between AU$85,574 – AU$117,234 in Melbourne.
According to talent.com, the median salary value is about AU$87,500 per year in 2022. AU$100,000 would allow you to live a pretty decent life in Melbourne, but I’d peg it as maybe AU$150,000 for a high-on-the-hog lifestyle.
Facts about Melbourne salaries:
- Aussies pay about 25% in taxes on average.
- Someone with an income lower than AU$18,200 doesn’t have to pay any taxes.
- The proportional taxation principle’s burden is more on low-income earners.
- Men receive an average salary of AU$122,288, which is higher than women’s, AU$101,999.
- The average income in Melbourne is AU$91,208.
- The highest earners are between the age of 45 and 54, with annual income averaging from AU$80,298 or AU$1,544.20 weekly.
- The national minimum wage for full-time workers was about AU$772.60 per week in 2021.
- The highest-paid careers are Engineers & Technicians V, with an average earning of AU$226,082 AUD and professionals in the Insurance sector, with a salary of AU$166,180 AUD.
- The best-paid salaries based on education are, Doctorate degrees with an income of AU$183,157. A Master’s Degree comes in second with a salary of AU$133,882.
- Higher experience level, 16-20 years, receive a salary of AU$164,799. At the same time, those above 20 years receive AU$158,174.
Mortgages are costly compared to the savings rates banks offer. Properties are also incredibly high priced in most major Australian cities. Expect to pay above one million for a single-family home.
To purchase a home in Melbourne, you may need to be above the average salary scale, which is about AU$110,000 – AU$150,000.
The core principles, if you want to buy a house in Melbourne, are:
- Spending less than you earn
- Investing your savings
- Finding frugal ways of living
- Increasing your earning capacity
Going by this incredibly crude baseline, it will be possible for you to purchase a decent 1 or 2-bedroom house within the first few years of your career.
Average expenses with an average salary in Melbourne
Expenses with a gross income of AU$120,000 per year:
|Housing||AU$400 per week as a minimum|
|Electricity & Gas||AU$84 per month|
|Water||AU$91 per month|
|Groceries||AU$408- AU$724 per month, depending on family size|
|Health insurance||AU$150 – AU$300|
|Travel||AU$305 per month for personal cars and AU$105 if you opt for public transport|
With Melbourne being an expensive city, an income of AU$120K is a fair amount if you live within your budget.
You should be able to afford a decent apartment close to the city or a house in one of the suburbs, pay a car loan, and still have some loose cash for eating out, and other miscellaneous expenses.
You won’t be having money fights with your spare cash, but you should live a comfortable life. Here are 5 things you should keep in mind:
- Transport is expensive
- Housing is expensive
- Childcare is expensive
- Health insurance is average to expensive
- Utilities are comparatively expensive
The general rule of thumb on saving while living comfortably is that the less you spend on non-essentials, the more you can put away. If you’re used to living frugally, then adjusting to Melbourne should be easy.
Health insurance for expats in Melbourne
Is $100K a year gross a good salary in Melbourne?
A salary of AU$100,000 s above the average, which is a reasonable wage in Melbourne. This should be about AU$75,053 after taxes, which puts you among Melbourne’s top 10% earners.
This will also be dependent on what you call comfortable. For a city like Melbourne, most of your earnings will go into rent if you choose to live near the city but further away will allow you to live a good lifestyle while putting away something for your savings.
Everything depends on the finer details, which come down to personal preferences, choices, attitude toward money, and end goals.
For example, are you buying a house or renting? Will your partner be working as well? Will you enroll your kids in a private or public school? Considering that this is an above-average salary in Melbourne, it’s an adequate amount to live a good life.
What salary do you need to live comfortably in Melbourne in 2023?
To live comfortably in Melbourne, a salary of around AU$100,000 before tax is recommended. That translates to AU$75,033 a year or AU$6,252 net per month. However, as a single, you can have a decent life in Melbourne already with AU$75,000 before tax (AU$48,000 net).
This amount will allow you to rent a one-bedroom or even two-bedroom apartment in a good location, have a car, and buy good quality food.
Although, you maybe won’t be able to eat out every second day with that income. Yet, all general living expenses in Melbourne will be covered with an income of AU$75,000 before tax.
Here are the expenses for a single person that makes AU$75,000 in Melbourne:
|Item||Cost in AU$|
|Rent||$400 per week or $20,800 per year|
|Electricity||$280 per quarter|
|Internet||$600 per year|
|Car costs||$5,000 per year|
|Public transport||$1,500 – annual pass|
|Groceries||$200 per week|
|Going out for meals and drinks||eating out two-three a week in a reasonably nice place (or more often in cheaper places) – $100 per week or $5,000 per year|
|Holidays/flying home||$5,000 per year|
Also read: What is a good salary in Australia?