What Percentage Of The UK Earns Over £100k?

James Beattie By James Beattie 6 Min Read

There is no doubt that a £100k income is good however, how good is it compared to the rest of the UK? In this article, we are going to look at the percentage of individual earners who earn over £100k and what percentage of earners they represent.

Many people are interested in where they stack up against their counterparts. By analysing the data from the government we can find out how well you are actually doing. Let’s jump in.

What Percentage Of Individuals In The UK Earns £100k?

In the UK the data shows that earning over £100k puts you in the top 4% of earners in the country. This is the equivalent of the 96th percentile. If you are earning £100k, you are earning considerably more than the rest of the population.

By earning £104,000 or more you enter the top 3% of earners in the UK.

Income Distribution In The UK - Income Percentile

This chart was created from the latest government data on percentile points of the income distribution.

What Is £100k After Tax?

Securing a £100k annual salary in the UK is an outstanding achievement, placing you among the top earners. However, remember that not all of it is take-home pay; there’s Income Tax and National Insurance to consider.

For a £100k income, you’re in the higher tax bracket. Here’s the breakdown:

  • You’ll have a tax-free allowance of £12,570.
  • 20% tax on the next £50,720.
  • 40% tax on the subsequent £29,280. Contrary to common belief, only this portion is taxed at 40%, not your entire income.

In total, you’d contribute £27,432 as Income Tax and £6,968 towards National Insurance. This leaves you with a net annual income of £65,600, or approximately £5,467 monthly.

What Percentage Of Households Earn Over £100k?

Earning £100k as an individual puts you in the top 4% of earners but where does £100k in household income put you?

According to the ONS Data from the financial year ending 2020 (the latest available data), only 8% of households have a household income of over £100k per year.

In London, 16% of households earn over £100k per year.

Is £100k A Good Income In The UK?

Earning £100k annually in the UK is impressive, especially when you consider the median full-time salary is £33,280. This places you in the top 4% of earners nationwide. Hats off to you for reaching this milestone!

Even in London, where the average salary is £41,866 and living costs are higher, a £100k income ensures a comfortable city life.

In essence, £100k is a fantastic salary anywhere in the UK, stretching even further outside of London and the South East. If you’re in a lower cost-of-living region or have a partner also earning, your household will enjoy a considerable disposable income.

How Can You Earn £100k?

To earn £100k per year, there are really two separate paths you can go down.

The first is studying hard in school and specialising in a high-income field at University so you can pursue a career in that field. This could be a career in finance, law or medicine for example. If you follow a career in these paths, you have a fairly high chance of ending up with a 6-figure salary at some stage in your career.

The second route is through your own business. For many. this may actually be a better way to reach the £100k income level. There are an endless number of businesses out there that produce this type of cashflow. While this route is more unpredictable and will likely have many ups and downs along the way, it’s a great option for pursuing a £100k income.

Where you live can also determine how much you can earn. For example, if you live in London, you have a much higher chance of reaching a £100k salary as the average salary is much higher on average. However, the cost of living in London is also much higher so £100k in London is not the same as £100k in a lower-cost-of-living city in the UK.

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, earning over £100k per year puts you in the upper echelon of earners in the UK. Being in the top 4% is no easy feat and will require hard work and discipline to get there.

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I'm passionate about personal finance and making money. Currently trying to FIRE solely by building online assets. Grew my stock portfolio to £86,000 by 26.
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