Cost of living in Monterey

Are you considering moving to Monterey, CA? There are a lot of things you’ll need to know about the city before your relocation then! Not the least of them is the cost of living in Monterey. Information about the cost of living in a city or state can, in some cases, make up your mind on whether or not you really want to move there. It is, of course, vitally important that you are able to afford your new home and life without sacrificing your standards. But can you do that in Monterey? It’s time to find out!

The cost of living in California

Monterey is a city in Monterey County of California. So when you’re moving to Monterey, you’re also moving to California. And California is infamous for being incredibly expensive. In fact, California regularly finds itself on top lists of the most expensive states to live in. Its only real rivals in the race for this not-so-flattering title are Hawaii and New York.

Monterey marina.
Monterey is a beautiful place, but how expensive is it?

If you’re already living in California, you may not find these prices to be shocking. But if you’re moving to Monterey from a different state, you’ll surely find the cost of living to be an unpleasant surprise.

How does California compare to the rest of the country?

So if you’re not moving intrastate in California, what exactly can you expect to be the major differences between the cost of living you’re used to and the cost of living in California? Overall, the cost of living in California is more than 50% higher than the national average. That’s quite a difference!

The good news is that you’ll pay somewhat less for healthcare than elsewhere in the country. The bad news is that you’ll pay more (and sometimes a lot more) for virtually everything else. While groceries, utilities, and other miscellaneous costs may not be as high as you expect, you’ll definitely notice a difference in transportation costs. Finally, the major factor in California’s high cost of living is housing which is more than twice as expensive as the national average. While the median home cost in the US is $231,200, California boasts almost 2.5 times that – $552,800.

The cost of living in Monterey specifically

So now you know that the cost of living in California is less than ideal, especially if you’re hiring Monterey movers on a budget. But what about the cost of living in Monterey specifically?

Piggy bank for saving money to be able to afford the cost of living in Monterey.
You may find it a bit difficult to live on a budget in Monterey.

Surely, even within California, there must be some places where the cost of living is on par with the national average or even lower. You can’t hope to live on a tight budget in LA or San Francisco maybe, but there are other, smaller cities that won’t be a problem. Unfortunately, Monterey is not one of them. Depending on what specifically you’re looking at, the cost of living in Monterey is either approximately the same as the California state average or even higher.

How does the cost of living compare in Monterey to the rest of the state?

Just like the rest of California, Monterey is pretty expensive. In fact, it is probably more expensive than you expect, seeing as the prices in Monterey rival those in LA. So even if you’re moving locally from a nearby town, you may find yourself needing to pay more than you’re used to for the same standard of living. Monterey is as much as 13% more expensive than the state average! In some areas, Monterey is more or less equal to the rest of the state. In others, it’s somewhat less expensive. And in others still, it is more expensive. But one thing is for sure – if you’re looking for a cheap place to live, Monterey isn’t it (and neither is the rest of California).

What are the biggest factors in the high cost of living in Monterey?

Once again, the most significant factor in the high costs of living are the housing prices. The median home cost in Monterey is $795,600. Compare that with California’s state average of $552,800 and the national-level number of $231,200 and you’ll easily see why Monterey is statistically so expensive. You won’t fare much better if you’re renting either. The median rent in Monterey is more than $2,500.

Another expensive aspect of living in Monterey are the healthcare costs. While California’s are below the national average, Monterey’s are above both the state and national averages. A visit to the doctor, for example, will cost you around $120. If you’re seeing a dentist, you’ll need around $105. An optometrist, on the other hand, will charge you around $115. The cost of an RX drug averages at around $485. And your furry friends are not going to be much better off either! You can expect to pay around $55 for a visit to a Monterey vet.

What are the average or below-average prices in Monterey?

Luckily, even in Monterey, not everything costs an arm and a leg. Groceries, for example, are insignificantly more expensive than in the rest of the state. A carton of eggs or a gallon of milk will be around $2. You can get a bunch of bananas for less than $4 and a hamburger for less than $5.

Groceries in a store.
Some things like groceries are not nearly as expensive as you may expect!

Transportation, both in terms of public transportation and the costs of owning a private vehicle, is not only significantly less expansive than in the rest of the state but also less expensive than the national average. The cost of utilities is also noticeably lower than both the California and the US averages. Finally, miscellaneous costs like clothing, entertainment, and eating out are on par with both the state and national averages. Unfortunately, in terms of pure numbers, these savings don’t even come close to striking a balance with the high costs of housing.

What else can you expect from living in Monterey?

This is not to say that you can’t or shouldn’t move to Monterey! The cost of living in Monterey doesn’t have to be the deciding factor for you. Monterey has a lot of things to offer. You may, for example, want to focus on low unemployment rates and good job opportunities. Good housing that may well be worth the price, excellent weather and lots of opportunities for socialization are also some of the great things about Monterey. So don’t let the cost of living alone discourage you. There are plenty of things to love about moving to Monterey!

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