When people ask me why I moved from NYC back to Philadelphia a few years ago, I usually just show them my mortgage statement — or the fact that I can even afford a mortgage at all — as evidence of the lower cost of living. Now I have a map that shows how much further my money goes here in Pennsylvania than it did in New York… and which also makes me think that maybe I should move to Mississippi.
Using data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the Tax Foundation put together the above map illustrating the buying power of $100 in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
The good news is that a majority of states are getting at least the full value for their $100, with 15 states seeing that cash worth at least $110. Most of these states are from the Appalachians west to the plains states.
One hundred bucks go the furthest in Mississippi ($115.74), Arkansas ($114.16), Missouri ($113.51), Alabama (113.51), and South Dakota ($113.38)
Then there are the states where your money just doesn’t go as far as it could. With the exception of PA, every state up the coast from Virginia to New Hampshire comes in below the $100 line, with D.C. ($84.60) providing the least bang for folks’ buck.
The state with the lowest value for your $100 is Hawaii ($85.32), followed by New York ($86.66), New Jersey ($87.64), and California ($88.57).