Living Wages in Germany, per month in EUR

The Living Wage is based on the concept that work should provide an adequate income to cover the necessary living costs of a family. WageIndicator calculates Living Wage for around 50 countries based on prices collected within the WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey. The Living Wage calculated by WageIndicator is composed of seven parts: food, housing, transport, health, education, tax and other costs.

WageIndicator presents Living Wages for several household types and working hours to respond to different demands for living wage information: Typical family Living Wage is a baseline estimate that respects the country specific conditions. Family includes two adults and the number of children is given by country specific fertility rate (1.4 children per woman). One parent is working full-time and the working hours of second parent are approximated by national employment rate (62% in 2017). Standard family Living Wage is estimated for a family composed of two adults and two children. One parent is employed full-time and the second parent works 4 days a week it means family employment rate is 1.8. Single-adult Living Wage represents an acceptable standard of living for a single individual working full-time with no dependents.

Expenditure and Living Wage calculation (monthly rates in EUR)

  Typical family   Standard family   Single-adult  
  from to from to from to
Food 450 725 540 860 135 215
Housing 255 360 255 360 200 315
Transport 116 140 116 140 58 70
Health 20 60 20 60 5 15
Education 110 185 110 185 0 0
Other costs 48 74 52 80 20 31
Total Expenditure 999 1544 1093 1685 418 646
Net Living Wage 624 965 607 936 418 646
Gross Living Wage 887 1370 862 1329 594 917

Note: For more details see Living Wage FAQ.

Family Living Wages (monthly rates in EUR)

There is not a single answer to what is the adequate cost of living. The result is complex, as the cost of living varies by household composition, location, and employment pattern. The following table presents the Living Wage estimates for a set of common household compositions and under different assumptions about working hours.

  from to
Typical family (two parents + 1.4 children, 1.6 working) 885 1370
Standard family (two parents + 2 children, 1.8 working) 860 1330
Two parents and two children, 2 working 775 1200
Two parents and two children, 1.5 working 1040 1600
Two parents and two children, 1 working 1550 2400
Two parents and three children, 1.6 working 1100 1700
Two parents and four children, 1.6 working 1220 1900
Single-adult without children, 1 working 595 915

Note: Results in the table are rounded.

Living Wages in Context (monthly rates in EUR)

Living Wages are presented in context with other wage indicators including minimum wage, poverty line, and various prevailing wages of workers. Table shows the development of income levels over two years.

7-12/20151-6/20167-12/20161-6/2017
  from to from to from to from to
Minimum wage 1440 . 1440 . 1440 . 1498 .
Living Wage - Typical Family . . . . . . 885 1370
Living Wage - Single Adult . . . . . . 595 915
Real wage of low-skilled worker 1670 2060 1620 1990 1630 2010 1650 2000
Real wage of medium-skilled worker 2050 2510 2030 2500 2020 2490 2000 2490
Real wage of high-skilled worker 2840 3540 2830 3540 2850 3560 2860 3620

Note: Reported monthly earnings of workers in low-, medium-, and high-skilled occupations are obtained from the voluntary WageIndicator web surveys on work and wages over the last 36 months. Results in the table are rounded.

Living Wage model diet and food prices in EUR

The food expenditure is the main component of Living Wage and it is determined by the price of food basket. The food prices are taken from WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey which collects the actual prices of all items necessary to calculate the Living Wage. The composition of the food basket is taken from the national food balance sheets published by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). The food basket is scaled to 2,100 calories per person per day that is the nutritional requirement for good health proposed by World Bank (Handbook on poverty and inequality, 2009).

Food itemGrams per dayEnergy (kcal)Price per kilo fromto
Wheat, barley and cereals 235 674 2.4 4
Rice 8 31 1 1
Meat (beef, pork, poultry) 213 318 4 8
Milk - Excluding Butter 636 297 .6 .9
Vegetables, Other 167 46 1.6 2
Potatoes and products 151 103 1 1.5
Butter, Ghee 30 214 . .
Egg (price per 10 eggs) 30 42 20 1.7
Beer 231 113 3 5.8
Sweeteners, Other 29 104 . .
Bananas 29 18 . .
Apples and products 46 22 2 2.5
Tomatoes and products 47 10 2 3
Onions 15 5 .8 1.5
Oranges, Mandarines 38 12 1.8 2
Wine 56 39 6.7 6.7
Cream 16 30 2 2.5
Olives (including preserved) 2 4 . .
Honey 3 8 . .
Lemons, Limes and products 4 1 . .
Tea (including mate) 2 1 . .
Coffee and products 17 7 . .

Data sources:

Living Wage FAQ.

WageIndicator Cost of Living Survey

World Bank Databank, Fertility rate – average births per woman in years 2010-2014

ILO, Estimated participation rate in 2017

FAO, Food balance sheet in 2013 

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