Where you live becomes more important as household income decreases. For example, when taking into account food, utilities, healthcare, housing, and general goods and services, New York City is more than twice as expensive to live in than Pueblo, Colorado. So while residents of both cities may struggle in minimum wage jobs earning $15,080 annually, the Big Apple denizen has less than half the purchasing power of his Rocky Mountain cousin.
The bottom line: If your income is tight, finding a locale with a lower cost of living is a surefire way to improve your quality of life — even without a raise.
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