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New to the U.S.? See How Your Home Base Affects Your Budget

The U.S. is often called the land of opportunity, and for many, a host of both personal and financial rewards is what draws them to make the move from their home country. When relocating to the U.S., whether it’s from across the pond or across the globe, it’s not just the language and customs one must acclimate to. Every time you use your credit or debit card, there’s another translation happening—the cost of everything from a cup of coffee to monthly rent. 

According to HSBC’s 2017 Expat Explorer survey, newcomers to the U.S. fare well. Of course, job prospects are a major consideration; almost three-quarters of expats, or 73 percent compared with 54 percent globally, believe the U.S. is a good place for those hoping to boost their career prospects. Beyond financial advantages, half of those who move to the country say their overall quality of life is better than at home, and six in ten believe their children’s quality of life is better than at home.

Of course, the cost of living across the U.S. varies greatly, down to what city and even neighborhood you’re in. It starts with the basics like housing, utilities, healthcare, transportation and education, trickles down to even the price of a dozen eggs or the cost of a movie.

Are you considering a move? According to recent national statistics*, the cost of living in key categories varies greatly across large metro areas in the U.S. Which city is right for you?

 

New York, NY

Average annual income: $87,198

Median home value: $685,000

 

Food: $7,293 annually

Entertainment: $2,578 annually

Public transportation: $119 monthly

 

San Francisco, CA

Average annual income: $92,780

Median home value: $1,204,700

 

Food: $8,321 annually

Entertainment: $3,301 annually

Public transportation: $79 monthly

 

Los Angeles, CA

Average annual income: $69,118

Median home value: $631,600

 

Food: $6,072 annually

Entertainment: $2,444 annually

Public transportation: $92 monthly

 

Miami, FL

Average annual income: $53,517

Median home value: $301,300

 

Food: $6,757 annually

Entertainment: $1,518 annually

Public transportation: $89 monthly

 

Washington, D.C.

Average annual income: $115,258

Median home value: $551,400

 

Food: $7,804 annually

Entertainment: $2,444 annually

Public transportation: $92 monthly

 

Read more on HSBC’s Beyond Banking: Decode the increasingly complex world of managing your money.

Did you know…

Besides the U.S., top places for expat income include Switzerland, India, China and Hong Kong.

*Source: HSBC 2017 Expat Explorer survey

Disclosure: HSBC commissioned this article. The views and opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of HSBC.

*Statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Zillow.com and Expatistan.com.