What's the first state that comes to mind in terms of the most expensive state to live in nowadays? It's probably somewhere in New England with its coastal prices or California with its Hollywood reputation but the fact is, it's neither. The most expensive place to live in the U.S. is not on the East or West Coast (not attached to either one, anyway) and it's a place that most people probably don't even consider going to outside of a vacation.
While the cheapest places to afford an apartment or a house are scattered throughout the country, the most expensive locations are pretty well-grouped together with the exception of one. Some are surprising considering how affordable they are to vacation at while others are a little more expected, with certain towns and cities completely pricing themselves out of the average person's budget. Thanks to data by World Population Review, we're able to share the five most expensive places in the country to live along with the one that not many people could afford to live in, let alone vacation in.
Surprise surprise, Massachusetts is in the top five most expensive places in the country to live. This state has an ongoing reputation for being among the most inaccessible places to most people who want to own a house eventually, and it's bringing that reputation into 2021. With that being said, Boston is one of the most expensive cities in the country to live in so it's not surprising that the surrounding area is not all that much more affordable.
The average cost of a house in this state falls somewhere in the range of $664k, give or take, which is more than three times the cost of a house in one of the most affordable states in the country, such as Arkansas or Missouri. Utilities and gas prices are equally high to match although the state does have a good thing going for it: the average salary is around $77k, which helps to offset some of the cost of living.
Interestingly enough, the utility costs in Oregon are not bad compared to the national average but the average house cost is around $550k. So while the Pacific Coast might be fairly affordable to visit, it's definitely pricing itself out of most people's budgets.
When it comes to groceries, Oregon is facing a high average as well, with things such as coffee and sugar being far more expensive than the rest of the country. Transportation is costly as well, which only makes it slightly more affordable than in Massachusetts.
New York is a very mixed bag when it comes to affordability and the cost of living. However, with the city containing the densest population of people, much of the state's data comes from this - which is why the average cost of a house comes out to about $1,901,222, according to World Population Review.
The towns and cities orbiting around the city go down in price the further from New York City you go, with Upstate New York having the most affordable housing and apartments by far. The problem with that is the proximity to work or the city, meaning that finding a job could become an issue. The average cost of rent in New York rounds up to about $3,667 for a two-bedroom in the city, making it the fifth-most expensive state in the country.
The only surprise when it comes to California making the list is that it's the third most expensive and not the first or second. Similar to New York, this state has areas that are more affordable and some that are outrageously expensive compared to the average national budget, with the average cost of rent being roughly $2,500 per month, increasing the closer you get to bigger cities such as San Francisco and Los Angeles.
Additionally, California ranks third in terms of the highest gas prices in the country which doesn't bode well for all the traffic that people often end up sitting in. Utilities are not a redeeming factor for this state, either, as energy bills alone can add up to well over $200, according to World Population Review.
That just leaves the most expensive place in the country to live: Hawaii. In reality, this isn't surprising considering the prime real estate that comes with living on an island, especially one as breathtaking as those which make up Hawaii.
The average cost of a house is estimated to be somewhere around $1,580,000, and this isn't even the most surprising number, as the utilities in this state also make up some of the highest in the country. With the state's geography, goods need to be shipped in constantly which drives the prices up significantly (not unlike in certain rural parts of Alaska), making the cost of living, in general, very high.