How Much Does a Software Developer Make in Every State?


While salaries for software developers remain hot in California, they’ve stayed cold in North Dakota.

In the following analysis, Fixr sheds light on federal data to provide a snapshot of software development wages in each state.

The median pay for developers in the United States is $93,350 per year—more than twofold the annual wage for all workers. Annual pay for the position ranges from $64,980 in North Dakota to $119,180 in California.

The field of software development requires expertise in computer programs, including applications on both mobile devices and desktop computers, and significantly contributes to the advancement of technical systems and networks, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The national workforce in 2012 included slightly more than 1 million software developers, who typically have bachelor’s degrees in computer science and work for computer services firms and software publishers.

Software developers include two primary categories, according to the BLS: Applications developers earned median annual wage of $90,060 in 2012, while systems developers took home $99,000 per year. The profession will grow 22 percent between 2012 and 2022, and add 222,600 jobs to the U.S. economy.

In California, developers earn the highest annual salaries, whose median is $119,180, while 12 other states—New Jersey, Virginia, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maryland, Washington, Rhode Island, Delaware, Colorado, New York and North Carolina—offer median wages of more than $100,000 per year.


New Jersey, where developers earn $114,630 per year, is second among the Top 5, followed by Virginia at No. 3 with a median annual salary of $113,450.

Software developers in California, New Jersey, Virginia, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maryland, Washington and Rhode Island earn more than $105,000 per year. In North Carolina, developers earn $100,610 per year.

On the other end of the analysis, North Dakota offers the lowest salary: Software developers there earn $64,890 per year. In South Carolina, they take home $71,610 each year. Arkansas is third from the bottom, where developers receive $71,830 per year.


Though annual wages shed light on the most lucrative places for software developers, cost of living varies greatly. That’s why Fixr is preparing an in-depth analysis to cover both wages and costs. To sign up for updates from Fixr, enter your email address below.


Yuka Kato

Industry Analyst