Salaries are highest in the (expensive) tech meccas
Of course, a bonus is only one component of a compensation package. Separate data from PayScale, which tracks compensation across the country, shows that base salaries are soaring. Median salaries for developers across 20 major metropolitan areas average $75,425 a year. Remember, that means that half of those salaries are greater.
Median salaries for software developers in Silicon Valley, of course, are the highest in the country at $97,000 year, according to PayScale. Because the Seattle area is home to tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon, it's not surprising that salaries there are a close second at $95,000 a year.
But if you're thinking of moving to one of these cities to make more money, there's a factor you need to consider. The cost of living in many areas is so high that your salary won't go nearly as far as you'd expect. For example, an $81,200 salary in New York City or northern New Jersey shrinks to $36,500 when PayScale adjusted for the cost of living.
After adjusting the salaries for the cost of living in their cities, here are the five metro areas where software developers will net the most money:
- Seattle: $80,800
- Phoenix: $77,600
- Atlanta: $76,100
- Dallas: $75,600
- Houston: $75,500
Notice that Silicon Valley, the emblem of the developer gold rush, didn't make the top five in effective earnings.
For developers anywhere, times are good. If you're not getting paid what you're worth, you have lots of better options.
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