Where Americans Pay The Most To Live And Why
As one can guess, higher paying jobs leads to higher costs of living. In fact, more than half of the 20 cities surveyed by the US Census Bureau are based in Caleeforneea, as Governor Arnold would say.
How is it that California is so dominant in the expensive category, when the mass of settlers first arrived on Plymouth Rock 300 years ago? 3,300 miles is a long way to travel, especially on horse and foot! The main reason for the unfettered move out west is simply warmth and sunshine!
Every time I vacation in Hawaii, I always ask myself, why the heck ain’t I here for good. Let’s face it, more sunshine equals happier people. Sunshine is the classic zeitgeber to help us wake up and get us motoring in the morning. No sunshine leads to no photosynthesis, which means no plant life, and therefore no ecosystem.
After 10 years of living on the east coast, I can still feel the grey skies weigh down my soul every winter. Don’t get me wrong. I love the winter snow during the holidays, but I just love being in a cheerful mood more. Here are America’s most expensive places to live based off median monthly housing costs.
TOP CITIES WHERE AMERICANS PAY THE MOST TO LIVE
1. San Jose, Calif. Median Monthly Housing Costs: $1,828
2. Bridgeport, Conn. Median Monthly Housing Costs: $1,793
3. Oxnard, Calif. Median Monthly Housing Costs: $1,780
4. Washington, D.C. Area Median Monthly Housing Costs: $1,706
5. San Francisco, Calif. Median Monthly Housing Costs: $1,660 (Here!)
8. Honolulu, Hawaii. Median Monthly Housing Costs: $1,532 (There!)
15. Trenton, New Jersey. Median Monthly Housing Costs: $1,401 (So not there!)
19. Seattle, Washington. Median Monthly Housing Costs: $1,368 (On the West Coast, but not as expensive likely due to rain)
So there you have it. Would you be willing to pay $131/month more to live in Honolulu, Hawaii than in Trenton, New Jersey? You bet your buns of steel I would! The next time you are feeling a little glum, look outside and see if the weather has anything to do with it. And if so, come back to this post and plan your move out west.
300 years ago, it would have taken you months to come out west. Now, all it takes is a two week bus ride at most. Don’t be afraid to pack up your bags and move, even with a family. Leo from Zenhabits, with his 6 children are moving to San Francisco from Gaum, and Ryan from Planting Dollars left Wisconsin for Hawaii, why can’t you? After experiencing 10 years on each coast, there is no doubt in my mind that living in a warmer, sunnier place is the way to go. See you on the beach this winter!
For Landlords: If you are a landlord and you have not refinanced in the past year, I strongly suggest you check online to see what the latest rates are. I always check with Quicken Loans because they are fast, quick, and provide a no obligation real quote based on the input you provide. I recently refinanced to a 5/1 Jumbo ARM for 2.625% in the Spring of 2012 after just refinancing in the fall of 2011 for 3.125% from 3.625%. As a result, I am saving an additional $4,000 a year in interest!
For Tenants: Take a moment to check your free credit score through GoFreeCredit.com, a company I trust. If you are in a hot rental market, or really want a particular rental, you should have your credit score as part of your application for your landlord. I am a multi-property landlord and highly value a credit score and report. Those who come to me with their credit score stand out above others who don’t. If you do not want to pay for the credit monitoring, simply cancel within the grace period.
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