What is a Good Salary in Sydney? [2023]

Sydney Opera house in Sydney, Australia.

Sydney is the best Australian city for career and lifestyle-orientated professionals. However, what salary should you expect when applying for jobs in Sydney? Will it sustain the high cost of living? A good income in Sydney will cover the costly expenses, allow you to enjoy life, and even save up for bigger investments.

An annual salary of A$95,000 or A$72,000 net is considered a good salary for a single person living in Sydney. Anyone earning between A5,500 and A$6,000 per month after tax lives a good life in the city. For a family of four, a total of A$7,000 per month is considered a good salary.

No wonder expats and locals alike are attracted to Sydney – it’s a hub of all commercial activities in Australia. This city is also home to various multinational companies and businesses. In particular, expatriates and foreign workers are moving to Sydney because of the demand for health, education, and unskilled workers. Check out this article to learn more about salaries in Australia.

What is a good salary in Sydney in 2023?

Sydney is an expensive city to live in. If you’re considering taking a job in the city, how much should you earn to meet its cost of living? The average salaries received by employees in Sydney are higher than Australia’s average salary. 

A monthly net income of between A$5,000 and A$6,000 or about A$95,000 before tax, is considered a good salary in Sydney. With that, you can comfortably afford to pay rent in the western suburbs and save up a good amount.

To achieve this, you need a salary of about A$80,000 – A$95,000 annually before tax. Anyone earning around A$5,500 is among good earners in Sydney. This is an ideal salary for a single person. For a couple with kids, you will need double the amount to live a decent life in Sydney.

Also read: What is a good salary in Melbourne?

For new graduates, the average starting salary per year for different careers is as follows:

  • Dentistry: A$86,300
  • Medicine: A$70,000
  • Civil Engineering: A$64,000
  • Primary and secondary school teaching: A$65,000
  • Social Work: A$62,700
  • Health Services: A$61,450
  • Law: A$67,000

With an annual salary of A$84,000, or A$7,000 per month ($5,375 after-tax), this will be your living situation in Sydney:

HousingYou can rent a one-bedroom apartment in the city center for A$2,500- A$2,800 per month.
Food and groceriesA$560- A$600
TransportYou can pay A$218 monthly using public transport, which is cheaper than paying A$4 on a one-way trip.
Health insuranceA$160
Disposable IncomeA$1,000 for clothes, eating out, internet, weekend getaways, and vacations.
SavingsYou will save A$500 every month.
TotalApproximately A$5,188

If you earn A$8,000 net per month or about A$110,000 before tax per year, this will be your living situation:

HousingWith A$3,000 or A$800 per week, you can rent a one-bedroom apartment in the city center.
GroceriesA$500- A$700
TransportYou can pay A$218 monthly using public transport, which is cheaper than paying A$4 on a one-way trip.
Health insuranceA$200
Disposable IncomeA$1,500 to cater for transport, internet, weekend outings, entertainment, and yearly vacations.
SavingsYou will be able to save about A$1000 every month for buying a car or house.
You can enjoy three-course meals every weekend at high-end restaurants.
You can afford trips out of the city quarterly.
You will go on lengthy vacations at the end of each year.
TotalApproximately A$5,188

If you choose to live out of the city center, you will spend less on housing. The average monthly cost of a one-bedroom house in Sydney’s city center is A$2,556.66. This is an average of about A$830 per week. With A$540 weekly, you could get a two-bedroom house, 30 mins drive away from the city center.

If you are a single person living in Sydney, these are the monthly expenses you’re likely to incur:

  • Rent: A$1,800- A$2,000
  • Food and groceries: A$600
  • Utilities: A$100- A$300
  • Transport: A$150
  • Health insurance: A$160
  • Disposable income: A$500 for clothes, shoes, internet, and eating out.

These expenses are about A$4,000 per month. With a monthly net salary of about A$5,000 (about A$75,000 before tax), you can comfortably cover the costs and save up some amount.

This salary is below average, meaning you can earn less and live comfortably as a single person. Rent is expensive in Sydney and takes up 32% of your income. 

Example of a good salary in Sydney

  • Annual salary – A$134,000
  • Monthly salary – A$11,166

This translates to A$96,673 per year or A$8,055 per month after tax. It’s a common salary for project or surveillance officers in Sydney. Which is above the average. The approximate lifestyle you can afford in Sydney with that salary:

HousingA$3,600 monthly rent (A$900 per week) for a two-bedroom apartment in the Central Business District (CBD).
Groceries and foodA$500- A$600
TransportationFor public transport, a monthly ticket costs A$173 per month.
Health insuranceA$200
Disposable incomeA$1,500 for clothing, shoes, entertainment, weekend spending, vacation, and internet.
You can go for holidays thrice a year.
You can eat out in lavish restaurants every weekend.
You can pay for private insurance covers.
SavingsA$1,000 or more

The fixed expenses come to a total of about A$6,700 every month. With a gross salary of A$11,166, your take-home amount is A$8,000 every month. With this salary, you will be able to put up a good amount into savings.

Some typical jobs in Sydney with annual salaries:

JobAnnual salary
IT ConsultantA$56,000
Senior Registered NurseA$194,824
Software EngineerA$115,000
Product ManagerA$141,756
Data ScientistA$125,000
Warehouse WorkerA$40,000
IOS DeveloperA$111,000-A$120,000
Head of ITA$139,000-A$141,000
Chief Executive OfficerA$94,000-A$104,000
Business AnalystA$58,000- A$62,000
DesignerA$86,009- A$93,000

Below are some average annual salaries of Sydney’s decent income earners:

  • Associate Professor: A$144,000
  • Marine Engineer: A$107,980
  • Chartered Financial Analyst: A$109,110
  • Financial Controller: A$119,246
  • Nurse Practitioner: A$121,600
  • Sonographer: A$122,622
  • Data Architect: A$131,819
  • Solution Architect: A$124,300
  • Associate Lawyer: A$132,700
  • Marketing Director: A$155,000
  • Security Architect: A$166,210

Gross vs net

Gross salary is the amount an employee receives before tax and deductions. It is the highest amount on your payslip. Net salary is the take-home amount after tax and deductions. These deductions include income tax and Medicare Levy.

 For income tax, the rate is as follows:

Salary Bracket (A$)Tax Rate
120,001-180,000 37%
Above 180,00145%

The Medicare Levy is 2% of your monthly taxable income. It’s used for public health medical services in Sydney.

Bonuses, holiday pay, and remuneration packages

Employees who work on weekends are eligible for compensation. Working on Saturdays will earn you 150% of the normal day’s base salary. On Sunday, you get 200% compensation.

Due to the nature of the job, some workers are entitled to allowances. These include people who work in harsh and risky environments. 

Employees are entitled to payment on public holidays even if they don’t work on those days. All employees are entitled to a 4-week paid annual leave every year. In case of sickness or accidents, an employee gets paid sick leave.

Salaries in Sydney

picture of map of Australia.

An employee in Sydney typically receives about A$90,000 per year. Salaries range from A$23,000 to A$400,000 per year. 

The minimum wage has increased to A$21.38 per hour or $812.60 per week in July 2022.

The annual median salary is A$89,000, meaning 50% of the city’s population earns below A$89,000 while the remainder receives above A$89,0000.

The highest-paid employees are the Executive Management & Change professionals with an annual salary of A$130,000. The lowest-paid employees are Retail, Trade & Craft professionals with a yearly wage of A$37,000. 

Salaries in Sydney are paid weekly or once every two weeks. You get more when you work on weekends. To be an average income earner in Sydney, you have to earn about A$91,000 per year.

Average salary in Sydney 2022

According to the average salary survey, the average salary as of March 2022 was A$91,992 per year. The most typical salary was A$64,870.

Payscale reports that the average salary in Sydney is A$77,000 per year. It’s the net average after-tax.

The average salaries of some professions in various industries are:

JobAverage salary
Office ManagerA$68,713
Civil EngineerA$82,350
High School TeacherA$73,800
Electrical EngineerA$80,350
Financial AnalystA$93,171
Registered NurseA$63,600
Enterprise ArchitectA$165,830
Machine OperatorA$59,580
Marketing DirectorA$155,000

The average salary per year varies with gender in Sydney. Men receive an average salary of A$136,505 while women get A$112,213.

Business and Management are the highly paid sectors with an annual average of A$172,667. Sports and Recreation receive an average salary of A$168,112 per year.

Professionals with Doctorate Degrees earn an annual average of A$156,380, while Master’s Degree holders receive A$146,394. Graduate employees receive an average salary of A$65,478 per year.

Workers with experience of over 20 years receive an average salary of A$175,565 per year in Sydney. Those with experience ranging from 15 to 20 earn an annual average of A$172,943.

The average hourly salary of a part-time worker in Sydney is A$24. Students receive an average salary of A$25 per hour. 

Some of the top-paying employers in Sydney with the annual average salary are:

  1. Lend Lease: A$276,000 
  2. Toyota: A$173,000
  3. National Broadband Network (NBN): A$205,000
  4. Nomura: A$157,000

Average expenses with average salary in Sydney

Expenses with an average gross income of A$91,992 or A$5,811 net per month:

Health insuranceA$300
Other InsurancesA$100
Telecommunications and internetA$150
Other utilities A$100
Household expensesA$200
Disposable IncomeA$500
TotalApproximately A$5,220

Some common expenses in Sydney are:


The cost of housing is expected to rise due to the 3.1% increase in the Consumer Price Index in Sydney.

A one-bedroom apartment in the city center has an average cost of $2558 per month. Moving further away from the city center will reduce housing costs.

For utilities (electricity, internet, phone data, and gas), you can expect to pay around $250 per month. A 60Mpbs unlimited data plan will cost you A$72 monthly.


An estimate of about A$560-A$600 per month is enough for a single person’s groceries and food. For a couple or a family of four, budget between A$700 and A$1,000 monthly. Some essential food items cost as follows:

  1. A dozen eggs: A$4.75
  2. 1kg rice: A$2.45
  3. 1kg beef: A$18.47
  4. 1kg potatoes: A$3.27
  5. 1kg tomatoes: A$5.46
  6. 1kg bananas: A$3.32

The average cost of eating out in restaurants is as follows:

  • Breakfast: A$15
  • Lunch: A$16
  • Dinner: A$25

Public transport

Sydney’s public transport uses an Opal Card. A one-way ticket on public transportation costs A$4 and A$2.70 on weekends and public holidays. A monthly pass ticket goes for about $217. Fuel costs range between A$1.30 and A$1.32 per litre if you own a car.


The average cost of health insurance for a single person is A$2,000 per year or A$160 monthly. You’ll need to pay A$350 per month for a big family.

Highest-paying jobs in Sydney

Some of the highest paying jobs in Sydney are:

  1. Surgeon
  2. Judge
  3. Bank Manager
  4. Chief Executive Officer
  5. Orthodontist
  6. College Professor
  7. Architectural Manager
  8. Advertising Sales Director
  9. Airline Pilot
  10. Marketing Director

Is $80k a year a good salary in Sydney?

view of high-rise buildings, tourist and bay-area in Sydney, Australia.

With an annual salary of A$80,000, you take home A$61,993 per year or A$5,161 per month after tax. A$80k a year is below the average wage in Sydney. With A$5,161 a month, your life will look like this: 

RentA one-bedroom apartment going for A$2,500- A$2,800 per month
Food and groceries-A$500- A$600
Health insuranceA$160
Disposable IncomeA$500
TotalApproximately A$4,610

A single person earning a gross salary in Sydney can live a good life. You can pay all fixed monthly expenses and save some amount. However, you have to minimize eating out and weekend getaways. With this salary, you have to limit the luxuries.

If A$80K is the annual salary of a couple where each one works, it places them above the average Sydney salary. That means their take-home amount every month is A$10,200. They will save about A$2,000 every month, travel across the country, and enjoy eating out once in a while.

What salary do you need to live comfortably in Sydney?

Sydney is the world’s second most expensive city to live in. Since the cost of living is going higher, but salaries remain constant. A$100,000 net pay per year will give you a comfortable life in the city.

The average data on living expenses is as follows:

  • A family of four needs an average of A$5,214 per month, exclusive of rent.
  • A single person will need A$1,437 every month without rent.

To live a comfortable life in Sydney, you need to earn above the average of A$91,992 per year. With this, you’ll have A$7,666 every month.


The cost of living in the city center and near the beach is higher. The further away you are from water and the CBD, the less you’re likely to pay, especially for housing. You’re likely to spend up to A$800 per week in areas like Paddington and Surry Hills.

A one-bedroom flat far from the city center costs about A$1,500 per month. A three-bedroom flat in the city center costs over A$3,700 while in the outer areas it goes for about A$2,500.


Sydney has health grocery shops that sell organic and fresh foods at fair prices. Farmers’ markets like Redfern and Waterloo, which are close to the CBD, sell whole foods on weekends.

With a budget of about A$600, you can have a whole month’s supply of groceries as a single person. However, for a big family, you’ll have to spend about A$800- $1,000.

Eating out

A simple meal will cost you about A$20 in Sydney. A three-course dinner is about A$100 for two people. For beers, you pay an average of A$6 per bottle, while wine goes for between A$12 and A$25.

To drink for less in Sydney, check out local newspapers for offers. Timeout and Good Food are some outlets that offer various cuisines at affordable prices.


Sydney’s public transportation relies on trains, ferries, and buses. With an Opal Card, you can pay for the means of public transport you want. Here is a breakdown of the ticket costs:

  • Adult Single: A$4
  • A day ticket: A$35
  • Monthly season ticket: A$160
  • 48-hour ticket: A$56

You can buy a bike and enjoy the ease of maneuvering through the city streets. Alternatively, you’ll spend A$1.32 per liter of fuel and additional repair and insurance costs if you own a car.

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