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10 Cheapest US Cities to Live In
Old 06-06-2013, 10:18 PM   #1
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10 Cheapest US Cities to Live In

Must be a reason!

10 Cheapest U.S. Cities to Live In - Yahoo! Finance
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:37 PM   #2
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After reading your attached link, I hope this doesn't turn into another thread of why do so many folks move to Texas. The last thread like that was so popular it was closed after only 5 days and 7 pages of input. 10 reasons people are moving to Texas
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:49 PM   #3
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And from a link in the OP article, the most expensive places to live, from worst to first:

LA
San Diego
Oakland
Boston
DC
Stamford, CT
San Jose, CA
San Francisco
Honolulu
NYC (from the article: "A T-bone steak from a Manhattan grocer averages $15.52. In Harlingen, Texas,... the same steak goes for $8.34.")
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:52 PM   #4
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Oakland is on that? That's crazzzzzy!
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Old 06-06-2013, 11:01 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by comicbookgujy View Post
Oakland is on that? That's crazzzzzy!
Here is what the Most Expensive article says about Oakland (apparently the researchers are really into steaks in this list ): Slide Shows Gallery-Kiplinger

Quote:
Cost of Living: 35% above average

City Population: 395,817

Median Household Income: $51,144

Median Home Value: $492,200

Like much of California, Oakland is plagued by pricey real estate. Housing expenses are double the national average, a heavy burden considering that household income falls below the U.S. median. A typical Oakland apartment rents for $1,604 versus the national average of $870. Groceries are another burdensome expense, coming in 22.5% above the national average. A T-bone costs 19% more in Oakland than in a typical U.S. city. That’s one of the highest steak prices among the 307 urban areas surveyed.
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Old 06-06-2013, 11:34 PM   #6
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The 10 cheapest cities listed in the article are

10. Idaho Falls, Idaho
9. Conway, Ark.
8. Springfield, Ill.
7. Pueblo, Colo.
6. Wichita Falls, Texas
5. Fayetteville, Ark.
4. Memphis, Tenn.
3. Norman, Okla.
2. McAllen, Texas
1. Harlingen, Texas

Fayetteville, Arkansas, was number two on our personal list of five places for retirement relocation. On paper it sounded like exactly what we wanted. So, we visited it. Fayetteville is a fine place but it just didn't feel like home to us for some reason. Maybe it was the topography, which is very steeply hilly in some parts of town. Maybe it was the town layout, which is spread all over and a little puzzling at first. But anyway, we crossed it off our list.

Which, of course, is completely meaningless since we decided not to move anywhere after all.
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Old 06-07-2013, 02:36 AM   #7
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One benefit to living in a "most expensive" city is that when you travel, you find yourself exclaiming, "Everything is so cheap!"
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Old 06-07-2013, 06:25 AM   #8
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One benefit to living in a "most expensive" city is that when you travel, you find yourself exclaiming, "Everything is so cheap!"
Not exactly. Other than cost of housing, you would find that other costs are quite similar among cities in the U.S.
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Old 06-07-2013, 06:53 AM   #9
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The source wasn't linked, and I am not going to bother to google it, but I call BS on this list.

I just don't believe there aren't other "cities" with populations over 50K in the SE and MW that aren't as cheap or cheaper.

" Council for Community and Economic Research's calculations of living expenses in 307 urban areas...."
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Old 06-07-2013, 07:18 AM   #10
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Not exactly. Other than cost of housing, you would find that other costs are quite similar among cities in the U.S.
My experience is that restaurants and groceries are often much higher in the "expensive cities" than in the "regular cities". Often gas/fuel too.
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Old 06-07-2013, 10:03 AM   #11
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My experience is that restaurants and groceries are often much higher in the "expensive cities" than in the "regular cities". Often gas/fuel too.
I see this within my city as well: Same item at same grocery chain is priced higher in nicer part of town than I live.

Gas stations also do this and are even easier to notice. I recently saved $0.20 / gallon by driving the five miles from where I noticed I was at 1/8 tank to my neighborhood.
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Old 06-07-2013, 10:08 AM   #12
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I see this within my city as well: Same item at same grocery chain is priced higher in nicer part of town than I live.

Gas stations also do this and are even easier to notice. I recently saved $0.20 / gallon by driving the five miles from where I noticed I was at 1/8 tank to my neighborhood.


Shows how cheap I am...we live in #9, considering a move to #2 area.
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Old 06-07-2013, 10:51 AM   #13
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My experience is that restaurants and groceries are often much higher in the "expensive cities" than in the "regular cities". Often gas/fuel too.
+1

Many other items vary in cost by orders of magnitude from place to place. Water is a good example. I never have to pay more than $2.76/month for water, the minimum bill here. Water can cost 10-20 times that much in some locations. Taxes can vary wildly, too, as can insurance. All these differences in cost and many more explain why articles like this are written.
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Old 06-07-2013, 10:54 AM   #14
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Since we rarely eat out, the price of restaurant meals means little to us. Who cares if a steak in a restaurant is cheaper someplace. Good beef can be bought almost anyplace.

OTOH, we have noticed that groceries seem to be cheaper in areas where cost of housing is higher....presumably b/c there are more grocery stores, who compete fiercely for customers. For our in-depth, scientific research, we have made comparisons across parts of VA, MD, D.C., WV, PA, NJ, NC, and FL.

Gas does seem to cost less in cheaper areas, which I'd attribute to cheaper rent and overhead for the gas station owners. The exception is that inner city gas stations are always high, even though surrounded by subsidized housing projects. Perhaps the cost of insurance accounts for this.

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Old 06-07-2013, 11:09 AM   #15
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Gas does seem to cost less in cheaper areas, which I'd attribute to cheaper rent and overhead for the gas station owners. The exception is that inner city gas stations are always high, even though surrounded by subsidized housing projects. Perhaps the cost of insurance accounts for this.
The land/rent costs as well as higher fees/regulations/zoning issues for gas stations might be bigger factors than insurance. There are a lot more hoops and costs to jump through storing gas underground within a dense city than in a rural area.
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Old 06-07-2013, 12:27 PM   #16
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+1

Many other items vary in cost by orders of magnitude from place to place. Water is a good example. I never have to pay more than $2.76/month for water, the minimum bill here. Water can cost 10-20 times that much in some locations. Taxes can vary wildly, too, as can insurance. All these differences in cost and many more explain why articles like this are written.
Yep, and we gave found that once you get past housing, the 800 lb gorilla in the room, the differences are relatively small, depending on your elective lifestyle choices. Lots of exceptions but housing rules (and is often climate-related).
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Old 06-07-2013, 12:27 PM   #17
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+1

Many other items vary in cost by orders of magnitude from place to place. Water is a good example. I never have to pay more than $2.76/month for water, the minimum bill here. Water can cost 10-20 times that much in some locations. Taxes can vary wildly, too, as can insurance. All these differences in cost and many more explain why articles like this are written.
Wow, W2R! That water bill really got to me. Wonder why your water is so cheap? Last month my water bill was $102 and my power bill (all electric) was $97. Just two people. I know you are single but I could live with double your bill.
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Old 06-07-2013, 12:36 PM   #18
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Wow, W2R! That water bill really got to me. Wonder why your water is so cheap? Last month my water bill was $102 and my power bill (all electric) was $97. Just two people. I know you are single but I could live with double your bill.
Here's why: We are surrounded by water! We have to have an elaborate drainage system just to keep dry, here in the New Orleans soupbowl. We are in a reclaimed swamp, sandwiched between the Mississippi River and Lake Ponchartrain. When it rains, I call my back yard "Lake W2R", half jokingly (it gets pretty soggy and splashy out there). It rains 60+ inches a year, here, and with our legendary humidity water doesn't evaporate. I don't even own a sprinkler or hose, because like other long time locals, I never water the grass or vegetation. Don't have to.

Also, I am in the suburbs (just barely over the city line), and because of that we have a newer water system that is in better shape than the one in New Orleans proper. That one is broken in many places, nearly disintegrated, and was badly damaged even further by Katrina. So, people in New Orleans proper pay lots more than we do and their water is often pretty unreliable.
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Old 06-07-2013, 12:40 PM   #19
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W2, are you billed separately for your sewer service? That's normally rolled into the water bill around here, and can be a substantial portion of that bill.
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Old 06-07-2013, 12:46 PM   #20
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W2, are you billed separately for your sewer service? That's normally rolled into the water bill around here, and can be a substantial portion of that bill.
Yes... Here's what is on the bill:

water: $2.76
sewer: $2.07
garbage: $13.89
mosquito control: $1.72
park maintenance: $1.36
Louisiana state admin fee: $1.60
Total: $23.40

Actually we are only billed every other month, so we are billed for twice this much; these are the monthly amounts.
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