Best places to live on $100K salary

Even though the U.S. economy has strengthened, basic living costs remain expensive for many Americans.

In fact, the cost of living has risen 14 percent in slightly more than three years, as home and rent prices, alongside the cost of basic necessities, have increased.

But there are some cities where the average salary of residents far outpaces what it costs to live comfortably there.

GOBankingRates compiled a list of the best places to live in each state on a salary of $100,000 after analyzing a number of items including multiple cost of living indexes, median rents, while taking “livability scores” into account.

Here’s a look at the top results, based on where the average individual will have the highest portion of their incomes left over when typical living expenses are accounted for:

Pike Creek, Delaware

The median income among residents in this Delaware town is $122,772 – but according to the study, in order to “live comfortably” here, a worker would only need to be earning an average salary of about $77,000.

The average resident, then, has an extra $45,700 when their living expenses are deducted from their salaries.

The annual rent in Pike Creek is just shy of $18,000.

Cinco Ranch, Texas

The average resident in Cinco Ranch earns a pretty high salary – at a median of $141,992.

However, in order to get by comfortably in the town, the average person really only needs about $99,000.

That leaves people with nearly $43,000 left over.

Health care costs in Cinco Ranch are about $4,583 per year, while people spend slightly more than $4,000 on groceries annually.

Transportation costs, however, are nearly 50 percent higher than the national average.

Severna Park, Maryland

To live comfortably in Severna Park, a worker would need to be earning an income of $98,601, according to GOBankingRates. The average local resident, however, makes more than $132,300.

The difference between the median income and the income needed to live comfortably is around $33,700.

The median rent in the town is $2,451, while annually those costs add up to $29,412.

Los Alamos, New Mexico

In Los Alamos, New Mexico, workers need to earn just $69,096 to live in comfort. The good news for residents is that the median salary is nearly $101,400 – meaning people tend to have about $32,300 left over when typical living expenses are accounted for.

Transportation costs in the city are also 29 percent below the national average.


Libertyville Village, Illinois

Residents in Libertyville Village could live comfortably in the town on a salary of $99,882. The median income among local individuals is $126,406 – which means the difference is $26,524.

Groceries cost residents an estimated $4,100 per year, while annual utility costs are around $3,644.