Paycheck Comparison Calculator

Compare your earnings from two paychecks

Plenty of employees work tirelessly for the success of a company and deserve higher pay. Yet, management either doesn't notice or isn't doing anything about it. At some point, you may be faced with a critical decision, should I ask for a raise or start looking for a new job? To help decide, you can compare earnings between two paychecks using the calculator on this page. You can contrast what you're currently making to other job offers or market averages. With your results, you can strategize the career move will make the most financial sense. Or if you are happy with your job, use this calculator to see the impact of retirement or insurance deductions on your earnings.

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Payroll deductions calculator
When should I expect a raise?

It's always a great feeling getting a paycheck, as it empowers you to do all sorts of things. Thanks to your paycheck, you can save up for big purchases like a home or car. But even with your regular paycheck, it can be challenging to make ends meet.

When you're trying to get a promotion, you may end up taking on more responsibilities at work. But, getting your boss to give you more money isn't always that easy. You'll probably have to speak up for what you want and provide evidence of why you deserve it.

It used to be standard for employees to receive yearly salary increases, but this is no longer the case. While companies still budget for salary upticks each year, not everyone will be considered. Nowadays, promotions tend to be granted on a performance basis.

As the economy changes, your expectations of a raise (and how to get one) should pivot too. Though your employer may not be handing out raises, hard work and diligent planning can help you climb up the career ladder. For instance, if research shows that your pay is below average, asking for a raise could be reasonable.

Alternatively, if your efforts have helped the company succeed you could be in a position to get a promotion. However, it's up to you to keep track of the great things you did and remind your manager at the right time.

Before demanding higher compensation, it's essential to gauge how much of a raise is reasonable. It's typically best to ask around your network to find out what people in similar industries (and positions) are making. There also online resources, like the salary wizard by, which provide location-based pay averages.

Comparing two paychecks

Whether through networking or by chance, you may end up with two reasonable job offers. The question of what career path to choose is very common. Many people feel conflicted early on in their careers when trying to figure out what they should do with their lives.

On the one hand, you may have something that you are passionate but might not be progressing. By contrast, you can take a job with different pay and hours that could have more potential. So what do you do?

The first step is to consider the difference in compensation, and how that will work out for you.

For example, let's compare two job offers. A person that is working a full-time job with $20 hourly pay would net about $2,258 per month ($3,200 minus state and federal taxes). If this person were offered a $40,000 annual salary, with insurance and retirement, he or she would make $2,216 per month. While the compensation is similar, the second option includes 401K savings and medical coverage. (40,000 / 12 months = $3334 - 10% retirement, 20$ insurance, state and federal taxes).

In the next section, we'll go over commonly seen paycheck deductions. Don't forget to bookmark this page and save it to the home screen of your smartphone or tablet. If you found this page useful, please promote us on social media by giving us a follow or sharing this calculator with your friends.

Your paycheck deductions

Your decision on which career to pursue may come down to more than your net pay. You'll likely want to pay close attention the work environment and how you get along with the management. Beyond that, you should weigh the future potential of each career and how it matches up with your priorities. For instance, one person can prefer an office job with dental benefits over hourly work with sales commissions.

To budget yourself accordingly, you should be aware of what is being To budget yourself accordingly, you should be aware of what is being taken from your check, and why. Paystubs will vary by employer, but there are some things you can always expect to see taken from your check, and why. Paystubs will vary by employer, but there are some things you can always expect to see.

Some deductions are mandatory, meaning your employer is required-by-law to withhold some of your earnings. You'll likely see that federal, state, and local income taxes are taken from your pay. The amount that is withheld will vary. As you earn more, you could fall into a higher tax bracket and owe more money to the IRS. The government also takes a percentage of your earnings for Social Security and Medicare. These are programs that provide benefits in retirement.

Other deductions are elective, where you can decide if you want to participate. Most employers a retirement plan like 401k, 457, or 403b along with insurance packages. With a retirement plan, you can contribute a percentage of your income, while insurance is usually a fixed premium. There can also be other job-related expenses listed on your paycheck that are considered voluntary.

While your mandatory and elective deductions can be extremely beneficial, they could impact your net pay by hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars. Without estimating your deductions, you'll have a tough time comparing job offers.

Why you'll like this calculator

It makes it easy to compare hourly work to a salary

You'll learn exactly how much you could be taking home when taking on a new job

You can contrast your pay against market averages to leverage a promotion

The system allows retirement contributions, insurance premiums, and other deductions

The integrated report gives you a side-by-side comparison of two paychecks

If you are happy with your job, you can use this calculator to see your paycheck with retirement and insurance deferrals (when applicable).

Using the calculator

The calculator is very straightforward to use, and it just needs some information about your paychecks to provide you with an accurate comparison. If you need help working out your gross pay, start here. Otherwise, let's review how to use the calculator:

Step 1. In the first section of the calculator, you should add your general tax filing information. That includes your year-to-date income, your filing status, and the frequency of your pay. These details help the system to work out your federal tax rate.

Step 2. The second part of the questionnaire requires the details from your current paycheck. You should start by adding your gross pay for the period and the allowances you claimed on line 5 of form W-4. Typically, allowances depend on how many children you have. When you claim more allowances, your employer will withhold less of your earnings. As a result, you could have a more significant tax bill when it comes time to file. In this section, you also have the option to take retirement deferrals, insurance premiums, state taxes, and other misc deductions from your paycheck.

Step 3. The third part of the questionnaire requires the same information listed above, only for your new paycheck.

Step 4. Proceed to your results.

Once the questionnaire is completed, you can view your results in the form of smart prompts, charts, and tables.

Immediately to the right of the inputs, you'll find a smart summary of your net pay for both paychecks. Your net pay is the money you'll take home after your mandatory and elective deductions. Directly below the inputs, we provide you with the difference in earnings, so you don't have to guess.

For more detailed information, you can view the integrated reports. The first two tabs present a pie chart of your current and new pay to illustrate how your money is distributed. It will show what percentage of your gross pay goes towards taxes and contributions- giving you a clear indication of what is left for you. You can find your net pay in green.

The last tab is a detailed breakdown of your current and new paycheck. With this table, you can model different levels of pay, try out retirement contributions, and see if the insurance premiums are worth the cost. Without this essential information, you may never know if you are making the right decision to secure your future.