by: Marc Sternfield
It’s not exactly breaking news that California is among the most expensive states in the nation when it comes to home prices, rent, gasoline, utilities, and, well, most things.
The personal finance website GoBankingRates.com looked at data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and research by the state of Missouri to determine how much single people, not couples or families, pay in necessities each year. Then, those amounts were doubled to factor in discretionary spending and savings.
States that require the highest living wage for individuals are Hawaii ($112,411) followed by Massachusetts ($87,909) and then California ($80,013).
“That’s not surprising when you realize that median home values are also highest in Hawaii, California and Massachusetts,” the study’s authors noted.
According to the California Association of Realtors, the median price of a single-family home in California was $832,340 in August. Condominiums and townhomes average $645,000. Median rent is $2,912 per month.
Hawaii has a median home price of $713,000 and Massachusetts is $640,000.
If you want to live cheaply, head to Mississippi ($45,906), Oklahoma ($46,024) and Alabama ($46,577).
State-by-state rankings for required living wage (lowest to highest)
To keep up with inflation, California has raised the minimum wage every few years. It is currently $15.50 per hour, although some cities and counties are higher.