Is £40k a good salary in the UK (2024)

You’ve been offered a job with an annual salary of £40,000. But is it actually enough to live comfortably in the UK? The actual answer depends on your location and lifestyle. However, earning £40,000 a year is a decent salary in the UK.

In this article, we look at different things that affect your £40k salary. Like housing, living costs, budget and many more.

Is 40k a good salary UK

Is £40k a good salary in the UK?

£40,000 a year is a good, well-above average salary in the UK. It allows you to have a pleasant standard of living in most parts of the UK. You’ll be able to afford all the necessary expenses with ease. Also, you have money left over to enjoy life’s pleasures. For most individuals, a salary of £40,000 is the perfect salary.

However, £40k is a good salary or not depend on your location and lifestyle. If £40000 covers all your living expenses, then it’s a good salary for you. If not, then it’s not a good salary for you.

Is £40000 a good salary in London?

£40,000 per year can provide a reasonable standard of living for a single person in London. You earn enough to cover the essential costs of living in the city. But you likely won’t be able to afford an extravagant lifestyle, lavish vacations, or a large home. 

For a family, living on a £40k salary in London is tough. A one-bedroom flat costs you around £1,200-£1,500 per month. That means it will eat 50% of your take-home-pay. Also, you have other expenses like childcare, groceries, transportation and many more. After gathering all the expenses, living on a £40,000 salary can be challenging for a family in London. 

Tax Implications of a £40k Salary

At £40,000 yearly salary, a sizeable chunk of your salary will go toward taxes. If your income is between £12,501 to £50,000, then your income tax rate will be 20%. That means after deductions, your take-home pay will be around £31,224 annually or £2,602 monthly. The funny thing is, you have to work nearly 3 months out of the year just to pay your taxes!

While £40,000 is a good salary, be aware of how much actual money is going in your pocket. In the following table, we briefly describe taxation on your £40k salary.

Gross Salary£40,000£3,333£769£153
Taxable Salary£27,430£2,285£527£105
Income Tax£5,484£457£105£21
National Insurance £3,291£274£63£12
Take-Home pay£31,224£2,602£600£120
Calculate your own tax here.
Is £40k a good salary uk
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Can you live on £40k salary a year in the UK?

Yes, you can live on a £40k salary in the UK. On a £40,000 salary, your monthly take-home pay will be £2,602. It will provide a comfortable lifestyle in most parts of the UK. Also, you can easily cover all your monthly expenses like rent, utilities, transportation, and groceries.

However, living on£40k largely depends on your location and lifestyle. We all know £40k is an above-average UK salary, but in London, it is a decent salary.

Also, every person spends their money in their own way. For me, renting is important, but it may not be important for you. Therefore, it will always be unique to every person. Only you can decide if you can live on a £40000 salary.

Budgeting for a £40000 salary person in the UK

If you want to live comfortably in the UK on a £40,000 salary, you will need to make a budget. Here’s a breakdown of how you might budget on a £40,000 salary:

  • Housing: Housing is the biggest expense in the UK. Rent for a one-bedroom flat outside of London averages £700-£1,000 per month. Look for places within your budget that also have reasonable utility bills. You can spend £700-£900 per month on your housing expenses.
  • Transportation: You can use public transit for transportation in the UK. A rail card will cost £20 to £50, but travelling in metro or bus costs up to £50-£100 per month.
  • Food: For food, you can expect an average of £200-£300 per month. Shop in sales, buy in-season produce and meal prep to keep costs down. And for groceries, Aldi or Lidl will be the best.
  • Entertainment: There are many free or low-cost entertainment options available in the UK. Like parks, museums and beaches. You can spend £100-£150 per month for streaming services, night out, and cinema.
  • Additional Expenses: Budget £20-£40 per month for a basic mobile plan. Gas and electricity for a one-bedroom place average £100-£150 combined. Council tax will be £80-£120 per month.

How much rent can I afford on a £40000 salary?

On a £40,000 salary, you will have a decent amount of money to rent. But how much you want to spend on rent depends on you.

As a general rule of thumb, you can spend up to 30% of your take-home pay on rent. After taxation, your monthly take-home pay will be be £2,602. Thirty per cent of that is £780.

That means you can spend £700 to £900 per month on rent. On that amount, you can find a one-bedroom flat in most parts of the UK.

But in London, rent prices are higher than in other parts of the UK. Therefore, you may need to adjust your budget for a one-bedroom flat in London. If you don’t want to increase your budget for rent, then you can choose a flat-share option for rent.

How much mortgage can I get on a £40k salary in the UK?
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How much mortgage can I get on a £40k salary in the UK?

As an estimate, on a £40,000 salary, you can get a mortgage of £150,000 to £200,000. However, the exact amount depends on your personal circumstances.

Before giving a mortgage, lenders will check your credit score, down payment, debt-to-income ratio and other debts.

If you have a good credit score, then you may get up to 5.5 times your annual income as a mortgage. Also, a higher credit score means a lower interest rate.

To determine your exact mortgage amount, you can also multiply your annual income by 4 to 4.5 times. It is an ideal ratio that maximum lenders follow. Based on the ratio, your mortgage amount will be £160,000 to £180,000.

Don’t forget about the additional costs that come with home ownership. Like property taxes, home insurance, maintenance and repairs. Budget at least 1-2% of the home’s value annually for these fees.


So in the end, whether £40,000 a year is a good salary or not comes down to your personal circumstances. It may seem like a good income to some, but not to others. It is a good salary for a single person in most parts of the UK. But in London, living on 40k can be challenging.

You can also check


Is £40k a middle class in the UK?

A yearly income of £40,000 is commonly classified as middle class in the UK. We know £40k is above the national average and the median salary and provides a comfortable lifestyle. But still, it requires budgeting for major expenses. 

What art the best place to live with £40k salary in the UK?

With a £40,000 salary in the UK, you have some good options for affordable and enjoyable places to live. Some of the best cities and towns to consider include:
1. Edinburgh
2. York
3. Leeds
4. Bristol

Disclaimer: All the information provide on this article only for informational purposes. Please don't take it as a salary advice. Please do your own research before taking any salary related decisions.