I am 40 years old. Is it too late to start a career in software development?

I am 40 years old. Is it too late to start a career in software development?


I’ve heard that if you study necromancy and make a pact with Lucifer, you can actually avoid old age and death altogether. There’s some fine print to be worked through apparently, but imagine the possibilities from a coding career perspective. :grinning:


Well put, its my plan too!


Nope. I’ve 40 years old and started a few days ago. Did you watch the amazing job did by some alumni guys from freeCodeCamp: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V8B4orj0M7Y
They are not very young, they have their full time jobs, family, kids, etc. Also we can use our background, age, wisdom as an allied in our next step as a software developer.


In the company I work for, we have a 56 years old developer, who was only building html/flash pages before the hired them and he is now a full time developer doing React/Flux stuff.

On other thing. Even if you don’t get a job as a full time developer (but you sure will if you dedicate yourself to learning), you can always get some office job and use your programming skills to automate stuff so people don’t need manually do parts of their job when computer can do it for them. That’s how I started. And I was the guy who everybody in the office liked because I made their job easier.

Just put a lot of effort in learning and actually doing some projects and you’re never too old. Perhaps you will need to push even harder because it’s somewhat easier when you’re 16-20 years old when you’re starting but never give up if development is something that you like to do.


Hey Jay, I’m in my 40s too. I was an accountant, then teacher before. And I just finished the Front End Development Certificate today! As to your question, my reply is “If not now, when?” :slight_smile:

And now I’m moving on to the Back End Development Certification right away! I do hope you’ll complete yours soon. Enjoy the journey!


Hi Jay!

I recommend you listen to this episode of the DevelopersTea Podcast.

Also, all the episodes are very good!



I’ve started a bit earlier at 35 but from my hard earned experience I will say - If you planning to do it for yourself, for your startup or for freelancing jobs go ahead, BUT if you’re wishing to get a corporate paying job - DON’T DO IT because you will find yourself in the world of big big hurt and disappointment for many years ahead. Ask yourself for how many years do you want to be in a BIG BIG hurt ?


For the big employers, this unfortunately is probably right, they want employees to work long hours and the less personal commitments the better. However, smaller companies may very well be looking more for maturity and stability. Older programmers may be a much better fit for these companies’ cultures.

I think there is room at the table for all of us.


There are a lot more of us than you think. Many are even older. If you like it and work hard at it, your age will not be a barrier. It might be tougher, but not impossible. I totally get having those thoughts and feelings, but people change various careers despite age discrimination all the time.


Everything is in your hands, but you must be prepared for a hard work and proper commitment. Learning to code isn’t easy I know it from my own experience (I’ve been learning to code for over a year being a young 33 years old mum), but as you go your passion will grow and this is what will make a difference.

Don’t let doubts to stand in your way, we all have them, just go for it and enjoy yourself in the process :wink:


I too am 40+ and have had the same concerns as you. The way I see it is you are never to old for anything and if you enjoy what you do that will always shine through. Good luck and stay positive :relaxed:


40+ here, I think it’s a big problem to get old.
Usually the freelance a job I got, I never see anyone under 30.


Totally agree with all the contributors. 40+ age is not a big deal to get in touch with the development code. First and foremost there’s no age limit to learn anything. Instead one can learn whether he/she wishes to learn without any hesitation.Learning to code with the different programming languages can make you challenge yourself in becoming master in development field.


Great!!! I’m 35 and I’m worried about it too. But as I see now - away all doubts and we just have to work hard!


Later in life learner here. I know companies need good talent (I know some folks at a few of the BIG ones, they talk!) … it’s hard to find. Most would not have any problem with hiring someone in their 40s or 50s or older who knew their stuff. Any company that doesn’t is foolish.

I spend breakfast reading the latest front end dev articles and then spend some time each day learning one new trick or concept. I hope to have my career (after building up my html/css/ui/ux/javascript/python chops) and then be a consultant in my 60s and 70s, travel a bit. The spouse is also in tech and we hope to spend our retirement years presenting topics, consulting around the country, and enjoying our nerdy lives. :smiley:


Ageism is illegal at the workplace, no you are never to old.


I’m glad you asked the question, and I love the community’s response! You’re in a great place to be successful. If you have the passion and gumption, you definitely have the support, with endless opportunity.

I love the continuous learning component of being a software developer. It keeps my mind sharp and nimble. As you build skills and start looking for work, seek out employers who highly value and encourage personal learning and development. This I think is crucial.

Set bite-sized goals, celebrate your successes, and dream big!


Go for it! Life is too short for woulda, coulda, shoulda. You can do anything your heart desires!!!


Hi Jay…
Wow… I hope it’s not too late… because I’m 57 and doing the same thing !
AND… I come from a background in music [http//:www.davidpettymusic.net] !
It has helped me to listen to some podcasts that are encouraging for learning web developers, just to know that other folks went from zero to somewhere, and that at times it’s frustrating and lonely, but persistence will get you there.
I also am understanding that it’s helpful if you have several completed projects to show potential employers to substitute for your lack of formal education… the proof’s in the pudding kind of thing.
Anyway… good luck to you ! I got confidence in you !!


THAT number is only in Your head! :slight_smile:
I have 33 or 34 now and… actually i feel like i have some 25…and all i know now is what i want to learn coding… that’s all. I don’t care about that young people around me. All i care is WHAT DO I LOVE TO DO!
You have 40 now… ok… mby you will lose some full-time job offers… but… you always can be free-lance.

Actually - all the world is going to the free-lance direction. Somebody calling it - Uberization because of Uber business model. And that is right direction.

So don’t care about Your age. This is just a number in Your head.