Best Software Developer – Is this the best city for software engineers to live in to earn real money and make a living? Our 2021 report has the answers.
The salary looks great, but how much do you have in your pocket? We use data to find the best cities for developers, comparing 2021 with our previous academic years 2019 and 2017.
Best Software Developer
San Francisco, New York, Seattle—home to some of the biggest names in the tech world—are often the first cities that come to mind when you think about where to start your software engineering career. However, they are also some of the most expensive cities in the United States and around the world.
Design Patterns Every Developer Should Learn
In 2017 and 2019 we conducted research (link at the bottom of the article) on the best cities in the world for software engineers in terms of real income, because we want to know if San Francisco is still (or ever) the best choice, given its location in the heart of Silicon Valley.
We learned that Seattle is the best city to live in and New York is the worst city in the US. We expanded our horizons to look around the world and found that Oslo and Moscow were the best and worst cities in 2017, while Berlin and Shanghai took the crowns for the best and worst cities. Worldwide for software engineers in 2019.
Then, the world changes in 2020. After the global pandemic, we want to build on our previous analysis and see if our findings are still correct. If we can work as software engineers from anywhere in the world in 2021, where should we live our best lives to achieve our real income and lifestyle?
To answer this question, we removed our experienced earnings and came up with a new set of software engineer earnings in the US and abroad. You can read more about actual earnings in the methodology section below.
Productivity Tools For Software Developer Teams
Get out of the fight for tech talent for other companies, and get into today’s developers. Register and hire developers now →
While a software engineer earns a higher salary in San Francisco, his counterpart in Seattle earns more. This allows them to make more money because they not only hold more money, but also have lower costs and housing costs.
While most US cities ranked in the top 10 for real income worldwide in 2017 and 2019, in 2021 Berlin topped the list for real income. In fact, Berlin just edged out Seattle as the top international city for real income for the first time since we began the study this.
In 2021, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Bangalore continued to perform poorly in terms of real income, and Seoul lost one place to enter the bottom five.
Software Engineer Job Description
In our previous research (see the bottom of this post for links), we looked at the actual income of software engineers in the US and abroad. We want to look at our rankings then and see how they’ve changed (or not) over the past four years.
We use our actual earnings to calculate the earnings of an average software engineer in a city and use them as a benchmark.
We used the same Glassdoor salary numbers to calculate the after-tax income for each city and subtracted the average annual living costs and rent based on data from Numbeo. We’ve also selected cities with extensive job listings and expanded our global portfolio to give you more cities to consider when deciding where to move.
However, there are some caveats to keep in mind when evaluating which city is right for you. While we discuss these below, the point is that our model makes general assumptions about where you might live, we are not experts in international law, and yet our data may be biased.
Best Software Engineer Companies, Locations, Salaries 
Caveat number one is that our model assumes you’re a software engineer living alone in the middle of town with an average software engineer salary. We want our sample to be representative of as many software engineers as possible, so for “real income”, we assume that if a software engineer is paid more in New York, then the web developer will still be paid more in New York. .
Although this sample may not account for software engineers with spouses, children, roommates or significant others, dependents or lower or higher incomes, we wanted to be able to compare apples to apples so we chose sample data that would allow for comparisons between all cities. If you’re a professional engineer making 6 figures, married and living in a remote area, we know this model isn’t for your particular needs, but we hope it will be useful for most software engineers. .
Caveat number two is that we are not accountants and we do not rule out that our calculations may not include certain deductions or additional taxes in international tax laws. We have created this model based on the assumption that you are a resident of the country that pays taxes throughout the year and are not double taxed by your country if you are a foreigner / digital nomad. When we calculate the actual income, income tax deduction, social security payments and insurance to the best of our knowledge.
Finally, there may be a bias in our data because we get our own data. Glassdoor provides us with salary and job opening information, we turn to Numbeo for information on our cost of living, rent and quality of life, and the IRS calculator provides us with tax calculations.
Mac Setup: Desk Of A Software Developer & It Architect
Regarding job openings and salaries, Glassdoor may not reflect all job opportunities in cities around the world because Glassdoor is based in the United States – therefore, not all employers in foreign countries will post jobs there and use local offices instead.
For cost of living and rent, Numbeo draws from user information, which can be provided by English-speaking users whose tastes may be more expensive than local needs, thus biasing the cost of living higher for cities around the world.
Skip the initial steps of hiring by accessing proven remote developers who are ready to go. Get out of the fight for tech talent for other companies, and get into today’s developers. Register and hire developers now →
Since 2017, Seattle has been on our list for real income. The presence of Amazon and Microsoft in Seattle means higher wages for software engineers while the lack of government funding in Washington means those same software engineers can keep higher salaries while preferring lower prices.
Software Engineer Resume 
However, in 2021, three of the top five cities for real income are in Texas.
Even if you don’t work for either company, as a remote developer in Seattle, you also enjoy the benefits of a larger salary. However, compared to 2019, real income fell in Seattle, from $50,500 to $41,500, and jobs fell by more than half, from 12,400 to 5,319.
From 2017 to 2021, Houston and Dallas have proven to be cities to watch, consistently making the top five for the past four years. For the first time since 2017, San Jose did not make the top five in 2021 while Austin and Phoenix returned to the top five and Baltimore dropped to 10th.
In 2021, Washington, D.C. continues to be the city with the most jobs, while Miami, a newcomer to our list, has the fewest vacancies. As mentioned, the jobs in Washington DC Dropped from 32,000 to 14,000 to 12,000 from 2017 to 2019 to 2021.
Software Engineer Resume Samples & Examples For 2022
Although San Jose has a successful market for software developers from 2017 to 2021, cities like Raleigh, Portland and Houston are still struggling with the number of open jobs.
However, overall, we see that real earnings were lower in 2021 compared to 2019 and 2017, with after-tax wages lower than the 2017 and 2019 numbers and rates and rates. Living and housing costs are higher compared to 2017 (but not 2019).
We see lower revenue in 2021 compared to 2019 and 2017, which can be attributed to COVID-19 meaning lower board revenue.
We said in 2017 that renting makes a bigger difference in real income than the cost of living and that is still true today. Surprisingly, while rents increased significantly from 2017 to 2019, rents remained stable or even decreased in some cities from 2019 to 2021.
Software Developer T Shirt Software Developer Gift Almost
However, the difference between the city with the lowest price in 2021 (Phoenix) and the highest (San Francisco) is more than $2,000, almost 3 times.