Cost of Living Data Series

Missouri had the 9th lowest cost of living in the United States for the first quarter 2021. In general, the most expensive areas to live were Hawaii, Alaska, the Northeast, and the West Coast. The least expensive areas were the Midwest and Southern states. For the past 17 quarters, Missouri has been in the top 10 for lowest cost of living in the nation.

MERIC derives the cost of living index for each state by averaging the indices of participating cities and metropolitan areas in that state. Missouri’s cost of living index for the first quarter 2021 was 90.4.

Cities across the nation participate in the Council for Community & Economic Research (C2ER) survey on a volunteer basis. Price information in the survey is governed by C2ER collection guidelines which strive for uniformity.

Cost of Living Map of United States First Quarter 2021 JPG

2021 First Quarter 2021 Cost of Living

Rank State Index  Grocery Housing Utilities Transportation Health  Misc.
1 Mississippi 84.6 93.2 66.6 92.3 89.1 90.1 91.4
2 Kansas 86.8 92.6 70.0 100.1 95.4 100.3 90.3
3 Oklahoma 87.9 94.6 73.0 93.4 92.5 94.0 93.5
4 Alabama 88.1 98.0 69.2 100.7 92.8 91.4 94.1
5 Tennessee 88.5 93.0 79.4 91.7 88.6 90.4 92.9
6 Arkansas 88.8 92.5 75.6 90.7 91.0 85.4 97.4
7 Georgia 89.7 96.3 74.3 90.3 95.7 97.9 96.6
8 Indiana 89.8 92.4 76.4 96.7 96.6 93.9 95.2
9 Missouri 90.4 95.4 78.3 96.3 90.4 94.6 95.8
10 Iowa 90.4 98.3 76.5 94.1 98.6 101.4 93.7
11 New Mexico 90.9 94.6 84.4 89.9 98.5 97.9 91.9
12 Ohio 91.6 97.9 76.1 90.7 99.6 98.4 98.7
13 Michigan 91.9 91.0 80.2 98.5 101.8 97.8 96.4
14 Texas 92.3 91.2 83.5 103.3 90.9 94.5 97.0
15 West Virginia 93.1 97.9 77.1 88.2 104.8 88.4 102.9
16 Louisiana 93.2 95.6 86.3 86.7 94.9 98.0 98.4
17 Nebraska 93.9 98.6 86.6 88.9 100.4 99.0 96.8
18 South Carolina 94.2 101.8 80.1 105.0 93.5 95.6 99.4
19 Illinois 94.4 97.4 85.2 95.8 106.5 97.6 96.7
20 Kentucky 94.5 93.3 80.1 104.2 101.6 82.2 103.7
21 Wyoming 95.7 103.5 81.7 87.4 94.5 100.2 105.5
22 Wisconsin 96.9 100.9 88.6 98.1 97.8 115.6 98.9
23 North Carolina 96.9 97.4 91.8 97.2 95.1 111.4 99.2
24 North Dakota 97.8 102.1 93.7 93.3 105.2 114.8 96.3
25 Utah 97.9 97.9 97.6 93.2 99.8 92.8 99.5
26 South Dakota 98.8 101.8 112.7 91.2 89.7 96.1 91.1
27 Idaho 99.0 91.6 105.5 82.8 98.6 101.7 100.9
28 Montana 100.0 103.1 105.9 88.1 95.3 98.8 98.6
29 Florida 100.7 106.9 99.6 103.1 101.7 98.6 98.4
30 Virginia 101.5 96.1 111.7 96.5 88.7 99.9 100.2
31 Minnesota 101.6 105.0 90.4 96.2 102.8 111.6 108.8
32 Arizona 102.1 101.8 106.2 105.2 98.8 96.6 99.7
33 Pennsylvania 104.3 109.3 100.6 109.5 112.0 95.9 102.9
34 Delaware 105.3 109.5 93.3 104.3 111.0 92.9 113.7
35 Colorado 106.3 99.9 116.7 87.9 103.0 98.8 107.4
36 Nevada 106.4 110.8 118.5 87.0 113.2 101.0 99.3
37 New Hampshire 108.6 99.7 110.3 115.2 99.6 113.4 110.8
38 Washington 111.3 109.2 116.7 91.1 118.3 120.2 110.4
39 New Jersey 114.7 108.7 137.0 104.6 106.5 96.6 106.6
40 Vermont 116.3 109.5 136.7 120.6 116.4 98.5 104.1
41 Maine 116.6 100.4 142.0 107.2 106.9 112.8 108.4
42 Rhode Island 118.2 108.7 124.2 125.8 111.1 105.4 118.7
43 Connecticut 120.4 101.8 137.7 132.3 112.7 112.2 114.1
44 Maryland 124.4 108.7 171.3 104.0 110.5 83.3 108.0
45 Alaska 125.8 132.7 126.6 157.0 111.0 155.8 113.7
46 Oregon 131.6 109.0 178.1 90.1 125.3 115.7 118.5
47 Massachusetts 133.2 117.0 179.2 110.8 112.2 121.9 116.1
48 California 137.5 110.3 192.7 128.5 136.1 109.5 111.3
49 New York 145.0 118.3 230.2 99.2 110.6 102.5 114.8
50 District of Columbia 154.7 112.7 257.4 108.0 110.0 91.4 122.3
51 Hawaii 187.6 157.9 313.1 169.2 141.1 112.3 126.7
US  *** 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0

 

All of the participating Missouri cities had a composite index below the national average for the first quarter 2021. The city with the lowest cost of living index for 2021 was Joplin, with an index of 83.5. The city with the highest cost of living was Columbia, with an index of 94.7.

Cost of Living Indices for Participating Missouri Cities - First Quarter 2021

Metro Index Grocery Housing Utilities Transport. Health Misc.
Joplin MO    83.5 90.2 65.1 102.5 89.4 88.3 88.1
St. Louis MO-IL      87.3 98.7 71.8 96.4 87.1 87.8 92.5
Jefferson City MO   89.7 91.0 73.4 95.3 101.2 99.4 96.5
Missouri    90.4 95.4 78.3 96.3 90.4 94.6 95.8
Kansas City MO-KS   94.1 91.1 95.1 98.7 83.0 91.2 96.5
Springfield MO   92.8 102.7 76.8 85.7

91.6

104.6 102.2
Columbia MO    94.7 98.6 87.3 89.9 90.2 96.3 98.9
US Average   100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0

 

Cost of Living for Selected Missouri Cities 1st q 2021 JPG

 

See http://www.c2er.org/ for details and more data products.