I'm hoping to do Teach for America, and if that doesn't work out, I will get a master's in teaching and teach for a few years before graduate school in the sciences. First year teachers with bachelor's degrees in my area can earn $40,000 at some school districts and significantly less at others. Teachers with master's degrees are paid more. So I'm guessing that if I teach around here, I'd make at least $35,000. I've been wondering what sort of lifestyle that would entail.
This quarter's issue of U25, USAA's free magazine for young adult members, helped answer that question. A short article called "Paycheck Reality Check" states that after federal taxes, FICA, and Medicare, the net pay for someone with a salary of $35,000 would be around $28,356. After deductions for health insurance, take home pay is generally closer to $2,113 a month. I'm not sure how the pension program would affect this amount or what state income tax rates are, but this information gives me a starting point for further investigation.