Everyone wants a home that mixes affordability with comfort and Washington does this very well. Families love the Evergreen State’s beaches, midlands, and mountains as tourists before moving here and calling it home.
But before you decide to relocate, you have to do some research into the exact cost of living around the state — and that’s how we’re going to help you.
These are the places in Washington that cost a pretty penny — the most expensive cities in the state.
After we saved up for months and could finally afford it, we landed on this list of the ten most expensive cities in Washington for 2019.
So where is the most expensive place to live in Washington? That would be Bellingham.
So hopefully Connell (the cheapest place to live in Washington) can show these guys how to live on a budget in the coming years. Read on for how these places had costs rise faster than inflation.
And if you already knew these places were expensive, check out some more reading about Washington and the most expensive cities in the country:
The 10 Most Expensive Places To Live In Washington For 2019
Bellingham is the largest city in and the county seat of Whatcom County in the U.S. state of Washington. It is the thirteenth-largest city in the state, with 80,885 residents as of the 2010 US Census, and is part of the sixth-largest metropolitan area in the state. The boundaries of the city encompass the former towns of Fairhaven, Whatcom, Sehome, and Bellingham.
The median income in Bellingham comes in at $47,886 and the median home value is $328,300 for 2019.
Lynnwood is a city in Snohomish County, Washington, United States. The city is part of the Seattle metropolitan area and is located 16 miles north of Seattle and 13 miles south of Everett, near the junction of Interstate 5 and Interstate 405. It is the fourth-largest city in Snohomish County, with a population of 36,485 in the 2010 U.S. census.
The median income in Lynnwood comes in at $58,852 and the median home value is $331,300 for 2019.
Pullman is the largest city in Whitman County, located in southeastern Washington state within the Palouse region of the Pacific Northwest. The population was 29,799 at the 2010 census, estimated to have reached 31,682 in 2014. Originally incorporated as Three Forks, the city was later renamed after industrialist George Pullman.
The median income in Pullman comes in at $30,548 and the median home value is $240,600 for 2019.
Seattle ) is a seaport city on the west coast of the United States. It is the seat of King County, Washington. With an estimated 704,352 residents as of 2016, Seattle is the largest city in both the state of Washington and the Pacific Northwest region of North America. In July 2013, it was the fastest-growing major city in the United States and remained in the Top 5 in May 2015 with an annual growth rate of 2.1%. In July 2016, Seattle was again the fastest-growing major U.S. city, with a 3.1% annual growth rate. The city is situated on an isthmus between Puget Sound and Lake Washington, about 100 miles south of the Canada-United States border. A major gateway for trade with Asia, Seattle is the fourth-largest port in North America in terms of container handling as of 2015.
The median income in Seattle comes in at $79,565 and the median home value is $537,800 for 2019.
The median income in Bellevue comes in at $105,402 and the median home value is $665,700 for 2019.
SeaTac or Seatac is a city in southern King County, Washington, United States, and an outlying suburb of Seattle, Washington. The name SeaTac is a combination of the first syllables of Seattle and Tacoma.
The median income in Seatac comes in at $51,025 and the median home value is $264,500 for 2019.
Ellensburg is a city in, and the county seat of, Kittitas County, Washington, United States. The population was 19,786 in a 2016 census estimate. Ellensburg is located just east of the Cascade Range on Interstate 90 and is known as the most centrally located city in the state. Ellensburg is the home of Central Washington University.
The median income in Ellensburg comes in at $36,016 and the median home value is $216,200 for 2019.
Tukwila is a suburban city in King County, Washington, United States. The northern edge of Tukwila borders the city of Seattle. The population was 19,107 at the 2010 census. The population was 20,018 at the 2015 Estimate from Office of Financial Management. The City of Tukwila is a community of communities: residents of many diverse origins make Tukwila their home, a large commercial center draws workers and consumers to the city daily, and industry thrives with the confluence of rivers, freeways, railroads, and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
The median income in Tukwila comes in at $51,318 and the median home value is $260,200 for 2019.
Renton is a city in King County, Washington, United States. Situated 11 miles southeast of downtown Seattle, Washington, Renton straddles the southeast shore of Lake Washington, at the mouth of the Cedar River. While long an important salmon fishing area for Native Americans, Renton was first settled by people of European descent in the 1860s, and its early economy was based on coal mining, clay production, and timber export. Today, Renton is best known as the final assembly point for the Boeing 737 family of commercial airplanes, but it is also home to a growing number of well known manufacturing, technology, and healthcare organizations, including Boeing Commercial Airplanes Division, Paccar, Kaiser Permanente, IKEA, Providence Health & Services, and Wizards of the Coast. As of 2016, the population in Renton is 101,300, up from 90,927 at the 2010 census. Renton currently is the 8th largest city in Washington State, and is the 4th largest in King County. The National Football League’s Seattle Seahawks have a training facility in Renton. It is the second-largest facility in the NFL at 200,000 square feet.
The median income in Renton comes in at $70,661 and the median home value is $339,800 for 2019.
Port Townsend is a city in Jefferson County, Washington, United States. The population was 9,113 at the 2010 census, an increase of 9.3% over the 2000 census. It is the county seat and only incorporated city of Jefferson County. In addition to its natural scenery at the northeast tip of the Olympic Peninsula, the city is also known for the many Victorian buildings remaining from its late 19th century heyday, numerous annual cultural events, and as a maritime center for independent boatbuilders and related industries and crafts. The Port Townsend Historic District is a U.S. National Historic Landmark District.
The median income in Port Townsend comes in at $50,330 and the median home value is $298,700 for 2019.
How We Determined The Most Expensive Places To Live In The Evergreen State For 2019
The two most important things to think about when it comes to being able to afford if you can live comes down to:
- How much do money do I make?
- How much do I have spend to live there?
You need to understand your costs in the context of how much money you make.
For example, if the median household earns $100,000 and spends $40,000 on housing it’s actually cheaper to live there than a place with a median income of $50,000 and housing costs of $21,000. You might spend more on housing, but you have more money overall to play with.
With that example in mind, we derived several statistics from the latest Census American Community Survey 2013-2017 around incomes and costs. They are:
- Median Home Price / Median Income (lower is better)
- Median Income / Median Rent (Higher is better)
- Median Home Price
We added simply median home price because high home prices generally correlate with higher expenses for all costs related to homes (heating, electricity, etc).
You can then compare these metrics in each of the places in Washington to figure out which is the most expensive.
What you are left with is a “Cost of Living Index” by taking the average rank of each of these metrics for each city.
So we used that cost of living index in order to rank all of the 117 places in Washington that have more than 5,000 people.
The place with the highest cost of living in Washington according to the data is Bellingham.
Taking A Chunk Out Of Your Paycheck In Washington For 2019
Well there you have it, the places in Washington that have the highest cost of living, with Bellingham ranking as the most expensive city in the Evergreen State.
Here’s a look at the most affordable cities in Washington according to the data:
For more Washington reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Washington
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In Washington
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In Washington
Detailed List Of The Most Expensive Cities In Washington
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