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Ultimate guide to getting a raise

File photo
File photo (iStock / shironosov)

When it comes to working, the hardest question to ask is: “Can I have a raise?”

Having a baby, buying a new home, getting a new car or looking to retire early? All of these goals require money and sometimes you need that raise to get there.

In a recent survey, only 19% of people were happy with what they were bringing home in their paycheck.

So when and how do you ask?

According to www.balancecareers.com, experts recommend asking for a raise once a year.

Here are some tips to help you when you take that one shot:

First, find your worth. To know the number to ask for, look to see what the average person in your position makes. You can go to www.glassdoor.com or www.salary.com to find more information or attend a conference -- www.score.org offers free live and recorded webinars and interactive courses.

Also, timing is everything. The best time is during an annual or quarterly review or even at the end of the fiscal year when the company starts to budget.

It’s important to know what to say. Quantify your value with data, and don’t be afraid to start with a specific dollar amount.

If your boss will need to get the raise approved by HR, write a short list of reasons you deserve the raise.

Finally, find the one skill your office is lacking and learn it. That way you have something that nobody else has as a bargaining chip.