HOW MUCH IT COSTS A 4-PERSON FAMILY TO LIVE NOWADAYS

It’s all on our minds, housing affordability. How can I afford it? When is it going to drop? How much do I need? All good questions.

The cost of raising a family looks very different depending on where you are. It will cost you about $58,906 a year to raise a four-person family in Brownsville, Texas, for example, but if you move to San Francisco, California, that expense more than doubles, to $148,439.

That’s according to the Economic Policy Institute’s newly updated family budget calculator. The calculator shows the income a family needs in order to attain a modest yet adequate standard of living across the U.S. In other words, it measures “what families need to get by,” says EPI Senior Economist Elise Gould.

The calculator factors in geographic differences in cost of living and seven main expenses: housing, food, transportation, child care, health care, other basic necessities, and taxes.

“In order to keep the budgets modest, the calculator notably does not include any expenses associated with a middle-class lifestyle, such as paying off student loans or saving for college or retirement,” the EPI notes.

The EPI gathered data for 10 family types in all 3,142 counties and in all 611 metro areas. Below, CNBC Make It highlighted the monthly and annual cost of living for a four-person family (two adults, two children). Also included the cost of two of the biggest expenses families face: housing and child care.

Cities are listed in ascending order of total cost of living.

San Antonio, Texas

Housing costs: $1,001 per month ($12,012 per year)
Child care costs: $984 per month ($11,813 per year)
Total cost of living: $6,024 per month ($72,291 per year)

Jacksonville, Florida

Housing costs: $947 per month ($11,364 per year)
Child care costs: $948 per month ($11,381 per year)
Total cost of living: $6,203 per month ($74,437 per year)

Houston, Texas

Housing costs: $1,066 per month ($12,792 per year)
Child care costs: $1,044 per month ($12,526 per year)
Total cost of living $6,226 per month ($74,718 per year)

Dallas, Texas

Housing costs: $1,077 per month ($12,924 per year)
Child care costs: $1,044 per month ($12,529 per year)
Total cost of living: $6,291 per month ($75,488 per year)

 

Austin, TX

Housing costs: $1,251 per month ($15,012 per year)
Child care costs: $1,108 per month ($13,298 per year)
Total cost of living: $6,731 per month ($80,776 per year)

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Housing costs: $1,182 per month ($14,187 per year)
Child care costs: $1,574 per month ($18,893 per year)
Total cost of living: $7,680 per month ($92,163 per year)

Los Angeles, California

Housing costs: $1,663 per month ($19,956 per year)
Child care costs: $1,223 per month ($14,672 per year)
Total cost of living: $7,691 per month ($92,295 per year)

San Diego, California

Housing costs: $1,682 per month ($20,189 per year)
Child care costs: $1,281 per month ($15,376 per year)
Total cost of living: $8,129 per month ($97,547 per year)

New York, New York

Housing costs: $1,789 per month ($21,468 per year)
Child care costs: $2,773 per month ($33,279 per year)
Total cost of living: $10,344 per month ($124,129 per year)

San Jose, California

Housing costs: $2,522 per month ($30,264 per year)
Child care costs: $1,559 per month ($18,705 per year)
Total cost of living: $10,758 per month ($129,092 per year)

San Francisco, California

Housing costs: $3,121 per month ($37,452 per year)
Child care costs: $1,730 per month ($20,763 per year)
Total cost of living: $12,370 per month ($148,440 per year)

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