If you’re committed to finally reaching a money goal in 2014—whether it’s paying off the last of your student loans, or saving up for a down payment on a house—you might have a little extra help this year. According to industry experts, many Americans can expect to see a salary boost in 2014.
You’re probably thinking, “It’s about time!” During the recession, up to 75% of American employers froze wages—which may have contributed to a 6.4% decrease in real median family income since 2007.
With national unemployment down to 6.7% (and possibly reaching pre-recession levels by the end of the year), it looks like the numbers are tipping in employees’ favor. USA Today has even suggested that 2014 could be “The Year of the Raise.”
More than 40% of metro areas now boast an unemployment rate of 6% or lower. As such, wage leverage in major cities is shifting from employers to workers.
“The pool of workers [that] employers have been using to keep wages down will turn into a puddle,” Joel Naroff, president of Naroff Economic Advisors, told USA Today. Employees living in cities with nearly full employment, like Boston and San Francisco, stand to benefit the most, as do highly skilled workers willing to switch jobs.
Of course, if you’re looking to boost your earnings in the new year, you can do more than just wait around for a raise. Check out how these real people earned raises, and read up on the basics of negotiating.