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June 25, 2010

Cost of living

We frequently hear statistics measuring the national cost of living. But do we have any data telling us how the states rank on the cost of living?

Dr. Mike Walden, North Carolina Cooperative Extension economist in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at N.C. State University, responds:

"We do. ... This is courtesy of a group called the American Chamber of Commerce Researchers Association. They put out quarterly data on the cost of living by state. So the data I am going to quote here are from the fourth quarter of 2009.

"The top 5 most expensive states are Hawaii, the District of Columbia -- although technically not a state but obviously an area in the country -- California, Alaska and New Jersey. Those are the top 5 most expensive.

"The five lowest cost states are Oklahoma, Tennessee, Arkansas, Kentucky and Kansas. Now where did North Carolina rank? We ranked as the 13th most expensive state. So we were in the bottom half, if you will, in terms of cost of living.

"And, indeed, if you look at the Southeast, our cost of living is actually lower than the cost of living in Florida, South Carolina and Virginia, but we are a little more expensive than Georgia and Tennessee."

Posted by deeshore at June 25, 2010 08:08 AM