Here's more evidence that making $100K is definitely not what it used to be.
Check out this Bankrate piece - it details all the hits the once mighty sum of $100,000 a year has taken over the past three decades, from rising health care costs to insane leaps in home prices.
In fact, you need to pull down more than $172,000 today to enjoy the same buying power you would have had back in 1990, Bankrate notes.
Here are a couple graphs:
One hundred thousand dollars. Since the 1980s, the magical "six-figure" salary has been a benchmark for financial success. Not too long ago, that income often meant two nice cars in the garage of a large house, fun family vacations and plenty of money left over to save for retirement and college tuition.
But times have changed. Not only has standard inflation steadily eroded the real value of a $100,000 income, but the cost, of housing, health insurance and college tuition have risen dramatically in recent years. Consider the rising costs of food, energy and the necessities of a middle class life, and that six-figure luxury quickly turns to six-figure mediocrity.
Here in Greater Boston, possibly the biggest squeeze on that $100K salary has been the surge in home prices, which remain high, even after the collapse of the housing bubble and the stinky economy of the past few years.
As I've noted previously, you can break the six-figure mark and still find yourself stretching to buy a median-priced home inside I-495.
The median price in Middlesex County, covering the western and northern burbs, is nearly $390,000, while south of Boston in Norfolk County it is a none-too-shabby $356,000, according to the May numbers just released by The Warren Group. In Suffolk County, mainly Boston, the median is $315,000.
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