Skip to Content

Top 15 MOST Expensive States to Reside In

(Last Updated On: )

The quest for the perfect place to call home in the USA often leads to a rude awakening about the cost of living. From the eye-watering price of a modest home to the gulp-inducing total at the grocery store checkout, let’s dive into the reality of the 15 most unaffordable states in the US. Buckle up; it’s going to be an expensive ride.

1. California – The Golden (State) Gouge

shutterstock 1023313984 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / TierneyMJ

In California, a median home price floats around $800,000, but in places like San Francisco, that number skyrockets to over $1.3 million. Rent? About $2,800 for a one-bedroom in the city. High taxes, gas at $4+ a gallon, and a cost of living 50% above the national average make it a tough state for savers. But hey, you’ve got beaches, tech jobs, and avocados.

2. Hawaii – Paradise at a Premium

shutterstock 267356831 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Theodore Trimmer

Hawaii isn’t just geographically isolated; it’s on another planet financially. Median home prices are above $1 million, with Honolulu rents averaging $2,300. Groceries can be 30-60% more than the mainland, thanks to shipping costs. Salaries are higher, but they’re swallowed by costs, from gas at $3.50+ to healthcare that’s pricier due to the remote location.

3. New York – The Empire Spends Back

shutterstock 118480225 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / pisaphotography

New York’s allure comes with a hefty price tag. A median NYC home costs over $1 million, with rents for a tiny apartment at $3,000+. Upstate offers relief, but not much. Taxes are high, gas is around $2.80/gallon, and getting into the city (if you’re not already there) adds to daily expenses. But the diversity, culture, and opportunities? Unmatched.

4. Massachusetts – Revolutionary Prices

shutterstock 773132893 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

In Massachusetts, the median home price hits $530,000, with Boston’s rents around $2,500. Healthcare and education are top-notch but costly. High state income taxes and gas at $2.70/gallon don’t help. You’re paying for access to history, academia, and clam chowder.

5. Oregon – Green but Expensive

shutterstock 1125525113 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

Oregon’s median home price stands at $470,000, with Portland rents at $1,500. No sales tax, but high state income taxes and gas at $3/gallon balance that out. It’s a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and foodies, but your wallet will feel the hike.

6. Washington – Tech Wealth and High Costs

shutterstock 267394775 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

Seattle’s tech boom means jobs but also a median home price near $800,000 and rents at $2,100. No state income tax, but sales tax near 10% and gas at $3.50/gallon. Great coffee and mountain views come at a cost.

7. Colorado – Rocky Mountain High Prices

shutterstock 1443720419 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

Denver’s median home price is around $600,000, with rents at $1,700. High state income taxes, gas at $2.80/gallon, and a cost of living 12% above the national average. The outdoors is your playground, if you can afford it.

8. Alaska – The Last Frontier for Your Wallet

shutterstock 1142557964

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Rex Lisman

Despite no sales or state income tax, Alaska’s remote location means high costs for groceries and healthcare. Median home prices are around $310,000, with rents at $1,200. Gas is pricey at $3.20/gallon, but the natural beauty is unparalleled.

9. New Jersey – Garden State, Wallet Wilt

shutterstock 245082481 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Mihai_Andritoiu

With some of the highest property taxes in the nation, a median home price of $400,000, and gas at $3/gallon, New Jersey makes sure you pay for its proximity to NYC and Philly. The shore’s nice, if you can afford the property taxes.

10. Maryland – High Income, High Costs

shutterstock 2416624735 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Felix Lipov

A median home in Maryland costs $360,000, with rents around $1,700. High state income taxes, gas at $2.90/gallon, and a cost of living 20% above the national average. You’re paying for access to D.C., good schools, and crab cakes.

11. Connecticut – New England’s Pricey Corner

shutterstock 288321785 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

Expect to pay a median price of $320,000 for a home, with rents at $1,400. High taxes, gas at $3/gallon, and living costs 21% above the national average. The charm of small towns and access to NYC come at a high cost.

12. Rhode Island – Small State, Big Expenses

shutterstock 498383869 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

With a median home price of $380,000 and average rents at $1,500, Rhode Island’s charm is costly. High taxes and healthcare costs, plus gas at $2.80/gallon, make this small state a big spender’s game. Its coastal beauty and seafood are top-notch, if your wallet can handle it.

13. Vermont – The Green Mountain Spend

shutterstock 1134146468 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

Vermont, with its lush landscapes and artisanal everything, has a median home price around $330,000 and rent at $1,400. High healthcare costs, state taxes, and a cost of living that’s 20% above the national average mean you’re paying a premium for that serene lifestyle. Gas here hits $2.90/gallon, making those scenic drives a bit less sweet.

14. Virginia – Historical High Costs

shutterstock 661239940 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

Virginia’s rich history comes with equally rich living costs. The median home price is around $350,000, with Northern Virginia closer to $600,000 due to its proximity to D.C. Average rent is $1,700, with high healthcare costs and state income tax. Gas averages $2.70/gallon, but at least you’re close to the nation’s capital and a wealth of historical sites.

15. Illinois – The Windy (Pricey) City

shutterstock 1445642459 1

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Sean Pavone

Illinois, and especially Chicago, can blow your budget away. A median home price in the state is around $230,000, but in Chicago, it jumps to $350,000+, with rents averaging $2,000. High property taxes, state income tax, and living costs 20% above the national average in the city make it a tough financial nut to crack. Gas at $3.30/gallon doesn’t help, but the city’s vibrant culture, food scene, and sports might just make it worth it.

Brace Your Wallets

shutterstock 2126563922

Image Credit: Shutterstock / Yuliya Padina

Each of these states offers its own version of the American dream, served with a side of steep costs. Before you pack your bags for paradise, make sure your wallet is as ready for the adventure as you are. Dream big, spend wisely!

More Articles Like This…

Barcelona: Discover the Top 10 Beach Clubs

2024 Global City Travel Guide – Your Passport to the World’s Top Destination Cities

Exploring Khao Yai 2024 – A Hidden Gem of Thailand

The post Top 15 MOST Expensive States to Reside In republished on Passing Thru with permission from The Green Voyage.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / GaudiLab.

For transparency, this content was partly developed with AI assistance and carefully curated by an experienced editor to be informative and ensure accuracy.

Tips for Trip Success

Book Your Flight
Find an inexpensive flight by using Kayak, a favorite of ours because it regularly returns less expensive flight options from a variety of airlines.

Book Your Hotel or Special Accommodation
We are big fans of Booking.com. We like their review system and photos. If we want to see more reviews and additional booking options, we go to Expedia.

You Need Travel Insurance!
Good travel insurance means having total peace of mind. Travel insurance protects you when your medical insurance often will not and better than what you get from your credit card. It will provide comprehensive coverage should you need medical treatment or return to the United States, compensation for trip interruption, baggage loss, and other situations.Find the Perfect Insurance Plan for Your Tripimage 9133145 14418597

PassingThru is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

To view PassingThru’s privacy policy, click here.

+ posts

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.