One of the first things I “realized” when I lost my job was that chances are I’d be getting paid much less at the next job I had. Whether it’s because I switched industries, or got a job in the same industry with a different company. I was making $60k, and honestly, I was probably slightly overpaid since I was hired back in 2006….back when the company was really raking it in. With the industry the way it is now, chances are anyone hiring isn’t going to pay a premium knowing there are hundreds of other people out there willing to work for less.

Which brings me to my dilemma… far I haven’t gotten any interviews, so it hasn’t come up, but I encountered my first application that requires I state my salary requirements. Thing is, what do I do?! I’ve calculated I could survive with a $30k salary without having to change a thing….but that would mean no savings. If I up it to $45k that includes savings and retirement. It’s not the same job I was doing before, so I can’t really demand I get paid that same amount. How does a reasonable person go about this?

Using the handy tools Career Builder has provided I typed in the so-called title of this job I’m applying for. I chose a similar job description, and in my area the pay goes from $36k-$76k, with the average at $47k.

My fear is if I put my minimum as too high they’ll ignore my application without looking any further. If I put it too low, they won’t want to offer anything higher. As it is right this minute, I’m leaning towards putting in $48k or $50k. What do you think?

What would you do?