Your ability to “comfortably” afford housing, transportation, health care, groceries, utilities, transportation and more cost-of-living expenses now has a yearly dollar figure attached to it if you want to live in Seattle. A study by GOBankingRates.com puts the number at $72,092.
The financial services website looked at figures for the 50 biggest cities in the United States to help individuals gauge whether their personal spending habits could cause financial troubles depending on the cost of living for whatever city they were in.
The study relied on the 50-30-20 budgeting rule, according to GoBankingRates, in which 50 percent of income covers necessities, 30 percent is for discretionary items and 20 percent is saved. The study also compared the total amount of income needed to the actual median household income in each city to see if differences in cost of living are matched by differences in pay.
GOBankingRates says that the median household income in Seattle is $67,365, which comes up $4,727 short of the income needed to cover necessities, savings and additional expenses.
The website flatly declares that if your income isn’t enough to meet expenses you either need to cut costs or consider moving to another city. Conveniently, the Seattle slide is just one of 50, so you can browse across the U.S.
Over at Seattle Refined, they spell out five cities where people live the most comfortably (Virginia Beach, Va.: $16,072 surplus income) and five cities where residents are the least financially comfortable (Miami: $46,199 deficit income).
With an influx of well-paid tech workers, the gap between who is comfortable in Seattle and who is not is sure to increase as the cost of living rises. GOBankingRates’ study shows only 15 of the 50 most-populous U.S. cities have residents who are living with a surplus between actual income and income needed to live comfortably.