Find out what 6 figures mean and how to level up and hit a six-figure income!
Are you new to personal finance and ever wondered how much is 6 figures?
Maybe you heard about Instagram & Tik-Tok influencers making six-figure incomes and wanted to learn more.
In today’s day and age, making 6-figures is no longer something reserved exclusively for the elite few.
Gen Y (Millennials) and Gen Z are finding new and creative ways of reaching this level of income and many without a degree.
And if your questions also include: What do 6 figures mean? What do 7 figures mean? What do 8 figures mean? What do 9 figures mean?
Don’t worry, we are going to cover them all. But first, let’s cover the basics.
How Much is a Figure?
To keep things simple, let’s break everything down to its core. A figure is a digit or a number.
A figure would be any single number, so any of the following: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, or 9.
Now if you are currently making $15 an hour at your job, your hourly wage is made up of two figures: 1 and 5.
If you receive a $100 birthday gift, then that represents 3 figures: 1, 0, 0.
Your $1200 rent payment is 4 figures: 1, 2, 0, 0
Planning to purchase a home requiring a $15,000 down payment? Well that breaks down to 5 figures: 1, 5, 0, 0, 0
Now that we have covered the basics, let’s discuss some small contradictions.
If your paycheck last week was $1394.83 that unfortunately wouldn’t mean you taking home a six figure paycheck.
That would be considered a four-figure paycheck.
Why? Because when people are discussing money in the context of their salary and income, they are only referring to the dollars , the cents are not taken into consideration.
So what do 6 figures look like?
How Much is 6 Figures?
So since we established that a figure is a number or digit, 6 figures would be any amount that falls between 100,000 to 999,999.
A dollar less and you would fall into 5 figures ($99,999) and a dollar more would take you over to the world of seven figures ($1,000,000).
How Much is a 6 Figure Salary?
Now when you hear about people making a six-figure salary, it’s generally in the context of a year (before state taxes and deductions).
As you can see, their annual salary could be anywhere between $100,000 to $999,999 which is a huge range.
But if you hear someone say “I net a six-figure income”, that means their take-home pay for the year after taxes and deductions is at least $100,000 in their pockets.
Now keep in mind that even if you make a 6-figure salary, the city you live among other factors can play a huge role in how comfortable your lifestyle will be.
As a quick example, according to U.S.News the average home in Dayton, Ohio costs a mere $260,000 versus the 1.2 million dollars you would have to pay in Brooklyn, New York.
Why Do People Brag About Making 6 Figures?
Well, a lot of people believe that money talks and that living a six figure lifestyle or even a seven figure lifestyle is the be-all and end-all in life.
But I’ve come to notice that bragging seems to be more about personality than wealth. People are far too concerned with impressing others.
I’ve heard people brag about having $1000 in savings just as I’ve heard others drop comments about their 5 figure spending sprees.
Now keep in mind that having big financial goals is completely fine, mine is to partially retire to Greece 😉 . You might have other dreams like:
- A fairytale wedding
- Paying off your debt
- Early retirement
- Building passive income
- Financial freedom
Whatever your financial goal may be, there are plenty of valuable reasons for aspiring to earn 6 figures. For many, it’s simply a requirements for covering their basic bills.
Why Does Six Figures Matter? What Does a 6-Figure Lifestyle Look Like?
For those living in more affordable cities like Petal (Mississippi), hitting the threshold of six-figures of income could make all the difference between early retirement or not.
But as you’ve probably know, if you are living somewhere extremely expensive like New York City, you won’t get very far with 100K. Sure you will be able to cover costs but if you’re interested in purchasing a home, things would get tight.
GoBankingRates put together a valuable list, comparing the most affordable city for each state. Is your city on the list?
How To Make Six-Figures?
There are many different roads to reaching six-figures in income. While the most obvious would be getting a job that pays 6 figures, there are other paths to getting there.
- Starting a business
- Finding a great side hustle to supplement your income
- Making sound investments
Less likely paths;
- Trust fund/Financial gift
- Winning the lottery
Now let’s look at some possible careers that make 6 figures a year.
What jobs make 6 figures a year?
These days there are fortunately many different career paths that can lead to a six figure job.
The changes in the market were brought on in part by inflation, the rising cost of living which in turn led to a rise in salaries.
But there has also been the introduction of new and less conventional careers with no real established cap on potential income.
Some 6 figure jobs that require a college degree
Many people still take the traditional route of higher education to establish a well-paying career for themselves. Here are some top earning jobs;
Becoming a dentist still remains a high-income generating career. Providing key services for oral health, you can expect dentists to stick around.
The average national annual salary is set at : $175,840
Human resources manager
Human resources managers are responsible for overseeing the administrative duties of a business. Managing recruitment and the hiring process are some key tasks.
The average national annual salary is set at : $$116,720
Architectural and engineering managers
Managing plans and activities in engineering and architectural compagnies.
The average national annual salary is set at: $144,830
The insurance world is filled with actuaries. Risk assessment and in turn, minimizing costs is their specialty.
The average national annual salary is set at : $108,350
Principle responsibilities includes designing aircraft, satellites, spacecraft and even missiles.
The average national annual salary is set at : $116,500
Nurse practitioners are also known as advanced practice nurses. Tasks include all aspects of patient care from consultations, diagnosis, and treatments.
The average national annual salary is set at : $107,480
6 Figure Jobs Without a College Degree
Looking for some six-figure jobs that don’t require spending four years in college? Some require more skills, training, and certification while others rely on social skills, social media influence, and killer marketing skills.
Making a $100,000+ per sponsored post is not unheard of. Instagram influencers require in part a strong following and self-marketing skills to become successful but the income potential can be astronomical.
Instagrammer Julie Sariñana from Sincerely Jules earns close to $150,000 per sponsored post. With income potential this high, it’s impossible to evaluate their annual income but hitting seven-figures is a reality for many.
Yep, the days where people blogged for fun about their days are mostly gone.
Today’s blogging world is completely different, people are blogging about everything from knitting, travel, food, and yes you guessed it, personal finance but as a business.
Debbie Gartner runs a Home Decor blog and goes into how she consistently makes 5 figures a month, giving her a nice 6 figure income each year.
Air Traffic Controller
According to Forbes, the national average for an air traffic controller (requiring an associate’s degree), is $120,830 per year.
And commercial pilots are not far behind, taking home $102,870 a year with New York state in the lead.
What Does Making 7 Figures, 8 Figures, or 9 Figures Mean?
When you hit the world of 7 figures, 8 figures and 9 figures, the basics remain the same as they do for 6 figure incomes, a figure is a digit.
The moment you reach that one million dollar mark ($1,000,000) you’ve attained 7 figures. And you can ride that wave up to $9,999,999 (a penny short of 10 million).
8 figures means your yearly income anywhere between ten million $10,000,000 and $99,999,999.
Let’s not forget 9 figures (it’s huge), your annual income is between $100,000,000 to $999,999,999.
Earning 7 figures make you a part of the top 0.1% income earners.
While this may seem like an exclusive club, it’s still much more attainable than hitting the 8 figures and 9 figures brackets.
While earning 8 figures and 9 figures is possible, the available jobs seem to be more limited to CEO’s of huge corporations like Facebook , Hollywood actors and professional athletes.
Whether you were simply curious about the difference between 6 figures, 7 figures, 8 figures or 9 figures or searching for financial inspiration, it’s important to remember the impact finances have on our daily lives.
Whether you make $50,000 a year or $125,000, financial literacy and money management are key.
With proper budgeting, investments, and money management, you too can be on the path to reaching your financial goals.
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About the author
Clara is the founder of Blue World Dreams, an entrepreneur & budget-savvy personal finance expert. She’s invested in helping others attain financial freedom using her knowledge from running a successful seven-figure corporation and building an extensive and diverse investment portfolio. Find out more.