How much does it cost to be a web developer?

With Software Development topping 2014’s top jobs list, I thought I would share how much it cost me to become a web developer, and what my monthly expenses look like nowadays.

Start-Up Costs

If you’re new to the industry, you’ll need this stuff. My philosophy is that it is OK to spend money to make money, especially when it comes to getting proper tools. You have to have fast, reliable equipment or your productivity will be adversely impacted.


  • Mine was a gift

** Cost with a two-year contract

*** Free for evaluation

What about training?

My advise is to skip the college thing. Don’t waste your money, and more importantly, your life.

A few books and online resources are all you really need. Google is your best friend. Read up, then go build a real, live project. That is the best way to learn.

As you struggle through, you’ll be learning to think for yourself and figure problems out on your own. This will by far be your most valuable skill.

Recurring Costs


** Charter 30Gbps cable connection

Free stuff

The best part about software development today is that many of the tools you need are free! These are tools I use every day. Your list may vary some, but these have been very solid in my experience.


Never before has it been so easy to get such a well-paying and rewarding job. Anyone can do it, if they are interested, but it will take drive and commitment. For about $3,000 in up-front costs, you can become a web developer. My monthly expenses run less than many student loan payments.

It will take about 4-5 years and 10,000 hours of practice and resume-building to command a 6-figure salary. Think about it: would you rather have a 4-5 year college degree and no job, or a 6-figure salary?

While many people are struggling to find employment, employers are struggling to find good software developers (emphasis on good, since mediocre devs are a dime-a-dozen).

It is a great year to be a software developer!

Written on February 19, 2014