This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

5 Worst Cities for Cheapskates

NEW YORK (MainStreet) -- Cheapskates, beware! Move to one of America's costliest cities and you'll pay more than $600,000 for an average four-bedroom house or more than $2,300 a month for a typical two-bedroom apartment -- plus $9 for a six-pack of good beer.

"People who live in America's most-expensive cities pay a premium to be on the cutting edge," says Dean Frutiger of the Council for Community and Economic Research, which recently identified America's least-affordable locales as part of its study seventh-annual Cost of Living Index.

Each year, the think tank uses crowdsourcing to estimate living expenses in hundreds of communities. Volunteers check local prices on everything from teeth cleaning to takeout pizza, which CCER uses to create a weighted index that estimates how much it costs the typical professional/managerial worker to live in each area.

Popular East and West Coast locales dominate the most-expensive list, and this year is no exception. Frutiger says that's due primarily to such communities' stratospheric rents and mortgage bills, given that housing accounts for nearly a third of CCER's weighted index.

But the expert says many Americans pay the high housing prices gladly because moving to a major metro area can mean you'll land a great job.

"If you're someone who's aggressively upwardly mobile, you're probably going to have more of a chance for advancement in a big, expensive city," Frutiger says. "I lived in Vermont for years -- but if I moved back, what would I do for a living? Wax skis?"

Read on to check out America's five most-expensive communities from among the 308 locales CCER surveyed. (Or, click here to check out the nation's five least-costly cities.)

The rankings use actual 2013 prices on 56 goods and services available in one or more neighborhoods that are popular with each community's professional or managerial workers. Terms such as "average" or "highest-priced" refer to how much a given item costs in a specific community relative to what CCER found nationwide.

Fifth-worst locale for cheapskates: Queens, N.Y.
Cost of living:
 52% above U.S. average

You almost have to be a king to afford the New York City borough of Queens these days.

Located across the East River from ultra-expensive Manhattan, this once-blue-collar area is slowly becoming gentrified -- and expensive.

"When anything happens [economically] in Manhattan, you eventually get a spillover into Queens and Brooklyn and Staten Island," Frutiger says.

Queens' 2.3 million residents pay housing costs that run 132.3% above the U.S. average -- the eighth-highest rate among communities that CCER polled. Locals also face the fourth-highest tab for miscellaneous items, paying 27.8% above the U.S. norm for a basket of goods and services ranging from tennis balls to dry cleaning.

Similarly, Queens has the seventh-heftiest costs for utilities (34.8% higher than the norm), the 10th-biggest charges for transportation (17.2% higher than average) and the 14th-highest rate for groceries (16% more than the national average). Lastly, residents pay 12.3% more than what's typical for health care.

1 of 3

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!

Markets

DOW 18,053.71 +23.50 0.13%
S&P 500 2,088.77 +6.89 0.33%
NASDAQ 4,806.8590 +33.3870 0.70%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs