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Old 09-17-2011, 09:08 PM
 
5 posts, read 26,829 times
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Hi All,

I am doing some research to help me evaluate a job offer I have just received. The salary I was offered is 13 percent lower that what I am currently making-- living in an expensive city, though. I would like to hear your impressions on cost of living in New Orleans.

Though some 'cost of living' calculators I have consulted placed New Orleans 3% lower than the average US city, when I look at the cost of individual items (e.g., rent, electricity bill, car insurance, etc.) I see that this city is actually not that much cheaper.

Based on your personal observations, could you could help me put together an estimate of a monthly budget ? This will be super helpful for me to evaluate the offer. Thanks so much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here's what I am looking for:

-Rent: 1 br, close to University area (Tulane/Loyola)
-Electricity bill (1 person): I suppose I'll need ac in the summer!
-Gas (I hear most places have natural gas): how much is a monthly bill
-Internet (high speed)
-Monthly car insurance (say, a 2004-2007 sedan)
-Monthly Food
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Old 09-17-2011, 10:01 PM
 
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Internet: $40ish a month
Car Ins. : will be the most expensive, Louisiana has terrible car insurance rates (my last car before the crap car I own now. My Honda Fit was $160 a month with $1000 deductible in the 70115 zip. I now pay $80 for liability only)
Gas: unsure. I don't have gas
Electric: many people pay ALOT but that's due to 19th century houses with central heat and air. I have window units and my summer bills have been $80 at its highest this month, and $50 in the winter. I'm sure if you had a full size shotgun with central a/c you could pay $200-300 a month (f that)
Rent: I'm going to guess $1000 if you want an apartment. $800-1100 if you want a shotgun or something comparable (which you do want...not an apartment)
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Old 09-17-2011, 10:37 PM
 
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Thanks Prytania,

I am puzzled, because the numbers you mentioned are actually similar to expensive cities like those in the west coast.

However, when I try cost of living calculators such as this one:

About.com - Salary Comparison and Salary Calculator

...I read that cost of living is significantly lower. according to the salary calculator, a similar salary in New Orleans will give me an extra9,585 net change in disposable income.

I don't see how this could be the case. I want to be cautious in accepting an offer that is %13 lower than what I am making now based on the promise of lower cost of living... very puzzled. Any other responses will be greatly appreciated!
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Old 09-17-2011, 10:59 PM
 
Location: Pereira, Colombia
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The numbers stated above sound fairly accurate. I don't know what that calculator is using but I think it's safe to say New Orleans ain't cheap.
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Old 09-17-2011, 11:20 PM
 
Location: Denver
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Depends on where you're coming from. Those rates sound very similar to these in Houston.
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Old 09-18-2011, 09:24 AM
 
Location: New Orleans, United States
4,230 posts, read 9,386,034 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by valergal View Post
Thanks Prytania,

I am puzzled, because the numbers you mentioned are actually similar to expensive cities like those in the west coast.

...I read that cost of living is significantly lower. according to the salary calculator, a similar salary in New Orleans will give me an extra9,585 net change in disposable income.

I don't see how this could be the case. I want to be cautious in accepting an offer that is %13 lower than what I am making now based on the promise of lower cost of living... very puzzled. Any other responses will be greatly appreciated!
I don't know what's the deal is with the cost of living calculators. They're always too low for New Orleans. Prytania's figures are pretty accurate.

-Rent: If you rent a shotgun or something similar it'll probably be looking at $700-1,000. Anything under $700 is probably not a good idea. If you want an actual apartment, you could be looking at $900+ for 500 sq ft.
-Electricity bill: Living alone in a newer construction building, You may average $60 a month with level pay. With window units you could do $50-$60 without level pay. Central A/C in 100 year old building equals $200-$300 light bill.
-Gas: Don't have gas so I'm not sure.
-Internet: Cox $40, AT&T DSL $40, AT&T U-Verse $40
-Monthly car insurance: $100 a month at the least.
-Monthly Food: Can't give an estimate because I buy groceries on a need it basis, but food prices on average tend to be $2-$3 more than other places in both Louisiana and neighboring states from my observation. I find grocery prices to be similar to those I've seen in the Northeast vs the South.

NOLA isn't cheap.

Quote:
Originally Posted by annie_himself View Post
Depends on where you're coming from. Those rates sound very similar to these in Houston.
I was actually in awe of how much more living space and food I could get in Houston for the same price.
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Old 09-18-2011, 10:15 AM
 
Location: Denver
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WestbankNOLA View Post
I was actually in awe of how much more living space and food I could get in Houston for the same price.
The stock is much more vast here. So naturally, prices will be lower, but living in the Med Center is like living in a nice area of Uptown. Just as expensive. The buildings in the CBD are roughly priced identical to the ones Uptown (Galleria area), although New Orleans has more older units and we have newer ones.
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Old 09-18-2011, 10:40 AM
 
Location: New Orleans, United States
4,230 posts, read 9,386,034 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by annie_himself View Post
The stock is much more vast here. So naturally, prices will be lower, but living in the Med Center is like living in a nice area of Uptown. Just as expensive. The buildings in the CBD are roughly priced identical to the ones Uptown (Galleria area), although New Orleans has more older units and we have newer ones.
Gotcha
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Old 09-19-2011, 10:16 PM
 
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Update: I tried negotiating my the salary but I only got them to offer a small increase. My potential employer seems to disagree that NOLA is an expensive city. I asked for a few days to think about this.

So far, I looked for 1br on Craigslist close to university area and I am shocked by the prices ($950 approx). I am not sure if this includes utilities. If I have to pay $100 electricity on top, then... that's not too good.

BTW, I am also looking to the benefits package that they offer. The health coverage wtih UHC doesn't look great either. Having a similar coverage to the one I have will cost me $200 per month!

Bummer, It looks liek it'll be another freezing winter up north
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Old 09-19-2011, 11:01 PM
 
Location: Denver
14,343 posts, read 20,775,930 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by valergal View Post
Update: I tried negotiating my the salary but I only got them to offer a small increase. My potential employer seems to disagree that NOLA is an expensive city. I asked for a few days to think about this.

So far, I looked for 1br on Craigslist close to university area and I am shocked by the prices ($950 approx). I am not sure if this includes utilities. If I have to pay $100 electricity on top, then... that's not too good.

BTW, I am also looking to the benefits package that they offer. The health coverage wtih UHC doesn't look great either. Having a similar coverage to the one I have will cost me $200 per month!

Bummer, It looks liek it'll be another freezing winter up north
Being close to Tulane, that isn't bad at all in my opinion. Try New Orleans Real Estate - LATTER and BLUM Realtors
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