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10 Most Expensive U.S. Cities to Live In

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The most expensive U.S. cities are usually expensive for a reason. Residents pay higher living costs in exchange for favorable geography, climate, culture or economic prosperity -- or all of the above. Of course, that doesn't make the most expensive cities the "best" cities to live in, at least not for everyone, says Jennie Allison of the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness, a nonprofit research and policy group.

"We all consider how much it costs to live in a particular city, with housing being one of the biggest determinants of that," Allison says. "However, a person or business needs to think about what local amenities are important to them too, whether it be local public transportation systems, walkability, access to natural amenities, and so forth."


To determine just how much the most expensive U.S. cities cost, we turned to the latest data from the Council for Community and Economic Research. Its Cost of Living Index measures prices in 269 urban areas for housing, groceries, utilities, transportation, health care, and miscellaneous goods and services such as getting your hair done or going to a movie. Take a closer look at the 10 most expensive U.S. cities.

SEE ALSO: 10 Cheapest U.S. Cities to Live In

The Cost of Living Index is based on price data collected during 2017. City-level data on populations, household incomes and home values come from the U.S. Census Bureau. Metropolitan-area unemployment rates come from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and represent January 2018 rates (not seasonally adjusted). For the purposes of finalizing this list, the New York City boroughs of Manhattan and Brooklyn were treated as separate cities; Orange County, Calif., was screened out because it contains multiple cities with large populations including Anaheim, Santa Ana and Irvine.


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