Examining the U.S. States with the Highest and Lowest Average Monthly Rent

This week, doxo, the bill pay service, unveiled its annual Household Bill Pay report, unveiling insights into the average expenditure of U.S. households on necessities such as auto loans, utilities, health insurance, mortgages, and rent.

The report highlights that 32% of American households are engaged in rent payments, with an average monthly expenditure of $1,300.

As per Doxo’s findings, the states with the highest rent costs also tend to exhibit the highest mortgage costs, underscoring the enduring dominance of housing expenses in the financial landscape of many American households.

Doxo derived its rankings from data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Hawaii clinches the title of the U.S. state with the highest average monthly rent, with residents in the Aloha State shelling out an average of $1,983 per month for rent, as per the latest doxo report.

In a distinct doxo report from 2023, Hawaii was further identified as the most financially burdensome state in the U.S., gauged by the average expenditure on household bills. The report revealed that inhabitants of Hawaii allocate $3,070 monthly towards expenses, a staggering 50% above the national average of $2,046.

CNBC’s 2022 America’s Top States for Business study corroborated these findings, ranking Hawaii as the most expensive state to reside in, considering an index encompassing prices across various goods and services.

Amongst the Hawaiian islands, Kailua, situated on the island of O’ahu, emerges as the most financially demanding city within the state.

Here are the 10 U.S. states with the highest average monthly rent:

1. Hawaii
2. California
3. Massachusetts
4. New York
5. New Jersey
6. Washington
7. Maryland
8. Colorado
9. Virginia
10. Florida

California, United States (Credits: Pexels)

California secures the second spot with the second-highest average monthly rent in the nation. According to the latest doxo report, residents of the West Coast state allocate an average of $1,927 monthly towards rent.

In a separate doxo report from 2023, it was revealed that California’s average cost of bills amounts to $2,838 per month, marking a hefty 38.7% surge above the national average and representing 40% of the average household income.

Data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis in 2021 underscores California’s significant cost of living, averaging at $53,082 annually.

Additionally, besides rent and other expenditures, California residents might encounter state income taxes as high as 13.3%, the loftiest across the country, as reported by SoFi.

West Virginia
West Virginia, United States (Credits: Getty Images)

West Virginia stands out as the U.S. state with the most affordable rent costs, boasting a monthly average of $846, as indicated by the latest doxo report. Furthermore, it clinches the title of the most budget-friendly state for mortgage payments, with an average of $961.

According to RentCafe, the average cost of bills in West Virginia, inclusive of rent, sits at 25.2% below the national average, contributing to an overall cost of living in the state that is 9% lower.

When it comes to essential expenses such as groceries, West Virginia offers further savings, with costs approximately 6% lower compared to the national average.

Nestled in the Appalachian region, West Virginia earns its moniker, the Mountain State, owing to its picturesque rolling terrain. The state provides an array of outdoor pursuits, including mountain biking, hiking, whitewater rafting, and skiing.

In terms of urban living, Clarksburg emerges as the priciest city in West Virginia, where the cost of living is 5% higher than the state average yet 4% lower than the national average.

Here are the 10 U.S. states with the lowest average monthly rent:

1. West Virginia
2. Arkansas
3. South Dakota
4. Mississippi
5. North Dakota
6. Kentucky
7. Iowa
8. Alabama
9. Oklahoma
10. Wyoming

Arkansas, United States (Credits: Getty images)

Arkansas secures the No. 2 spot on this list, with households spending an average of $872 per month on rent. Additionally, it boasts the second-lowest average monthly mortgage payment in the nation.

RentCafe data indicates that the cost of living in Arkansas is 8% lower than the national average, with housing expenses clocking in at 22% below the national average.

Among Arkansas cities, Paragould emerges as the most expensive, with a cost of living 14% higher than the state average. Conversely, Conway stands out as the most affordable major city in Arkansas, with a cost of living 10% lower than the state average and 17% lower than the national average, according to RentCafe.

Arkansas is recognized as a tax-friendly state by SmartAsset, as it does not tax Social Security retirement benefits, and property taxes rank among the lowest in the U.S. However, the state does impose relatively high sales taxes compared to other states.

Sajda Parveen
Sajda Parveen
Sajda Praveen is a market expert. She has over 6 years of experience in the field and she shares her expertise with readers. You can reach out to her at [email protected]
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