U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Pennsylvania > Pittsburgh
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
 
 
Old 01-31-2011, 01:03 PM
 
20,274 posts, read 17,975,195 times
Reputation: 2820
Default Speaking of cost of living . . .

Here is a new study of costs of living and per capita income adjusted for cost of living in various large metros. Note this only includes the largest metros, the ones for which the necessary statistics are available:

Regional Exchange Rates: The Cost of Living in US Metropolitan Areas | Newgeography.com

It won't surprise people here to learn that Pittsburgh did very well in terms of relative cost of living, ending up #4. But maybe it will surprise some people that we were ONLY #4, and not higher still--personally, I wonder if Pittsburgh's recent housing price gains are starting to show up in these rankings.

Anyway, that in turn helps out our COL-adjusted per capita income: we go up from #15 unadjusted to #8 adjusted (passing, in no particular order, Houston, Chicago, NYC, Philly, Seattle, and several California cities, and being passed by St Louis). Equally notable is the way in which this methodology contracts the list overall. Unadjusted, Pittsburgh was behind #1 San Francisco by about $17,500. Adjusted, Pittsburgh is behind new #1 Washington, DC by only about $3,000.

Of course all this is very broad brush, as in fact was pointed out in part in the article. For example, lots of higher-income cities tend to get very expensive in the core area, and I would bet if you focused on that topic in particular, Pittsburgh would do even better. Relative income also varies by profession/industry. And so on.
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 01-31-2011, 02:38 PM
 
Location: BP
98 posts, read 86,344 times
Reputation: 41
I'm sure that San Antonio has a cheaper CoL than Pittsburgh (although most jobs don't pay all that well here either) but it isn't on the list. Someone asked about Columbus and Indianapolis and was given this answer :

"As the article indicates, only metropolitan areas covered by specific metropolitan area CPIs are included. There are no CPIs for IPS, COL or 22 other major metropolitan areas (those over 1,000,000 population).
Thank you for the inquiry.
Wendell Cox
Demographia"


So there are a few good candidates left off but all in all this is a good showing for Pittsburgh
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-31-2011, 03:09 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn, NY
567 posts, read 637,357 times
Reputation: 302
That article is a nice deviation from Wendell Cox's usual New-urbanist bashing rhetoric. And quite interesting indeed.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-31-2011, 04:51 PM
 
20,274 posts, read 17,975,195 times
Reputation: 2820
Yep, a bunch of metros not much smaller than Pittsburgh's, and many more smaller than that, weren't included.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-31-2011, 10:13 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
3,822 posts, read 3,320,157 times
Reputation: 1791
I find the exchange rate information really cool. It's like if we had to exchange our money every time we visited a different metro area in the county.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-01-2011, 07:01 PM
 
136 posts, read 126,451 times
Reputation: 54
I didn't dig very far into this, but as a renter, I see much more parity in our life no matter where we live.

Most of our expenses are fixed no matter where we go... car payment, student loans, taxes, insurance. The small differences in food/energy/gas/etc... doesn't swing things significantly. I understand that the big difference probably is in housing [rents tend to not swing as much in my experience], but if you are not trying to purchase a home, I bet these numbers don't really matter much.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2011, 12:41 AM
 
20,274 posts, read 17,975,195 times
Reputation: 2820
So Pittsburgh has one of the lowest home price to rent ratios among major U.S. metros. This does imply that buyers get a lot of the advantage of low housing costs. However, a Census study of 2009 American Community Survey data found that Pittsburgh had the lowest median gross rent ($643) among the 50 most populous metros:

Powered by Google Docs

So renters participate in the very low cost of housing in Pittsburgh too.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2011, 03:26 AM
 
Location: Macao
12,532 posts, read 18,511,159 times
Reputation: 6166
How does Las Vegas compare? Just curious...if anyone is viewing the data.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2011, 05:19 AM
 
20,274 posts, read 17,975,195 times
Reputation: 2820
Las Vegas isn't included in the first data set.

Las Vegas's median gross rent was pretty high at $1034. That's less expensive than the large California metros, but more expensive than places like Denver or SLC. Of course given all that is going on in Vegas these days, that might be a bit of a moving target (this rent study was published in October 2010, but based on 2009 data).
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-02-2011, 06:34 AM
 
Location: Southside Flats, Pittsburgh, PA
215 posts, read 191,726 times
Reputation: 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
So Pittsburgh has one of the lowest home price to rent ratios among major U.S. metros. This does imply that buyers get a lot of the advantage of low housing costs. However, a Census study of 2009 American Community Survey data found that Pittsburgh had the lowest median gross rent ($643) among the 50 most populous metros:

Powered by Google Docs

So renters participate in the very low cost of housing in Pittsburgh too.
I feel this should be tempered by other other measurements: Buy vs. Rent: An Update - NYTimes.com

These figures compare median home prices vs avg rent, and Pittsburgh comes out on top (or bottom, depending if you rent or buy). So while renters do see a cheaper total price tag, they are also paying a higher percent of the overall value of the property each month in rent, and more than anywhere else in the country.

Last edited by Faer; 02-02-2011 at 07:29 AM..
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2011 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $84,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Pennsylvania > Pittsburgh
Similar Threads

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top