Special Report

The Income a Family Needs to Cover Normal Living Expenses in Every State

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We all require a certain amount of money each month to pay for normal living expenses, and in recent months, that number has gotten a lot higher. Whether at the pump or the grocery store, Americans are being hit with a severe case of sticker shock. The Consumer Price Index rose an annual 8.5% in March, the highest increase since December 1981. Gas prices accounted for more than half of the rise in costs, but the cost of groceries skyrocketed 10% from the previous year, too. (These are the states where drivers pay the most for gas.) 

To determine the income required for a family of two adults and two children to meet basic living expenses in every state, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed March 2022 budget data from the Economic Policy Institute’s Family Budget Calculator

The EPI model budget includes items a family would need to maintain what the institute describes as “a modest yet adequate standard of living.” Cost estimates include expenses related to housing, food, transportation, health care, taxes, and other necessities, and are aggregated from the county to the state level using population data from the EPI. Data was adjusted for inflation to 2020.

Data on median family income and the percentage of families earning less than $10,000 are five-year estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2020 American Community Survey. That number is well below the U.S.’s official poverty threshold – which the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, a division of the Health and Human Services agency, estimates at $26,500 for a family of four. After declining for five consecutive years, the U.S. poverty rate rose to 11.4% in 2020, up from

10.5% in 2019, according to the Census Bureau. (These are states where income inequality has gotten worse since 2010.)

Click here to see the income a family needs to cover normal living expenses in every state

The income a family needs to cover normal living expenses varies widely from state to state. A family of four would need $112,751 annually if they live in New York state, the most of any state on the list. Much of that is taken up by food and housing costs. Second place is Hawaii, where a family of four needs $111,092 to cover basic needs.  

Looking for a less pricey place to live? Move to Mississippi, where the cost of living is the lowest at $70,116 for a family of four. Or second-place Arkansas, where a family of four can live on $70,474.

Source: Justin Sullivan / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Alabama
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $79,057 (18th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $9,784 (6th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,631 (25th lowest)
> Median family income: $66,772 (7th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 4.6% (6th highest)

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Source: Incomel / iStock via Getty Images

Alaska
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $94,945 (7th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $14,566 (14th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,419 (21st lowest)
> Median family income: $92,648 (10th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.5% (9th lowest)

Source: Mario Tama / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Arizona
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $84,889 (19th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $13,875 (18th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,338 (18th lowest)
> Median family income: $73,456 (17th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.9% (14th highest)

Source: dlewis33 / Getty Images

Arkansas
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $70,474 (2nd lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $8,993 (the lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $8,838 (5th lowest)
> Median family income: $62,067 (3rd lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 4.4% (7th highest)

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Source: David McNew / Getty Images News via Getty Images

California
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $101,407 (4th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $23,734 (the highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,543 (10th highest)
> Median family income: $89,798 (12th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.1% (25th lowest)

Source: John Moore / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Colorado
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $92,197 (11th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $17,157 (8th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,384 (13th highest)
> Median family income: $92,752 (8th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.4% (5th lowest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Connecticut
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $95,550 (6th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $17,127 (9th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,910 (6th highest)
> Median family income: $102,061 (4th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.7% (15th lowest)

Source: ChrisBoswell / Getty Images

Delaware
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $87,980 (15th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $14,037 (17th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,169 (16th highest)
> Median family income: $84,825 (17th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.9% (23rd lowest)

Source: TerryJ / Getty Images

Florida
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $82,998 (25th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $15,232 (13th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,385 (12th highest)
> Median family income: $69,670 (11th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.7% (17th highest)

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Source: usdagov / Flickr / Public Domain

Georgia
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $78,192 (13th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $12,152 (25th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,507 (22nd lowest)
> Median family income: $74,127 (19th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 4.1% (11th highest)

Source: nojustice / iStock via Getty Images

Hawaii
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $111,092 (2nd highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $23,335 (2nd highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $14,042 (the highest)
> Median family income: $97,813 (5th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.7% (17th lowest)

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Source: Tashka / Getty Images

Idaho
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $78,273 (14th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,791 (17th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,786 (23rd highest)
> Median family income: $70,885 (12th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.7% (16th lowest)

Source: Tim Boyle / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Illinois
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $86,153 (17th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $13,692 (19th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,274 (16th lowest)
> Median family income: $86,251 (16th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.3% (22nd highest)

Source: DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images

Indiana
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $79,612 (20th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,331 (11th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $8,544 (2nd lowest)
> Median family income: $73,265 (16th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.5% (19th highest)

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Source: RASimon / Getty Images

Iowa
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $73,867 (6th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $9,802 (7th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $8,885 (6th lowest)
> Median family income: $79,186 (25th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.8% (20th lowest)

Source: lillisphotography / Getty Images

Kansas
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $79,124 (19th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,740 (15th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,341 (19th lowest)
> Median family income: $77,620 (25th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.7% (14th lowest)

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Source: Mario Tama / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Kentucky
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $74,849 (8th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $9,687 (5th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $8,527 (the lowest)
> Median family income: $65,893 (6th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 5.2% (4th highest)

Source: Mario Tama / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Louisiana
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $76,581 (11th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $11,046 (21st lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,748 (25th highest)
> Median family income: $65,427 (5th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 5.5% (2nd highest)

Source: marcduf / Getty Images

Maine
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $83,440 (24th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $13,104 (23rd highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $11,480 (3rd highest)
> Median family income: $76,192 (23rd lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.5% (7th lowest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Maryland
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $89,052 (14th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $17,840 (6th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,293 (14th highest)
> Median family income: $105,790 (2nd highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.6% (11th lowest)

Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Massachusetts
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $109,184 (3rd highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $22,294 (3rd highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $11,674 (2nd highest)
> Median family income: $106,526 (the highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.8% (21st lowest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Michigan
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $78,057 (12th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $11,467 (24th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,058 (8th lowest)
> Median family income: $75,470 (21st lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.6% (18th highest)

Source: Jacob Boomsma / iStock via Getty Images

Minnesota
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $87,246 (16th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $13,486 (21st highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,936 (19th highest)
> Median family income: $92,692 (9th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.1% (2nd lowest)

Source: itsgila / iStock via Getty Images

Mississippi
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $70,116 (the lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $9,546 (3rd lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,350 (20th lowest)
> Median family income: $58,923 (the lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 6% (the highest)

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Source: DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images

Missouri
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $75,570 (9th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,344 (12th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,104 (12th lowest)
> Median family income: $72,834 (15th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.3% (23rd highest)

Source: MarkHatfield / Getty Images

Montana
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $81,516 (24th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,972 (20th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,782 (24th highest)
> Median family income: $72,773 (14th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.9% (22nd lowest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Nebraska
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $84,527 (20th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,551 (14th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,081 (10th lowest)
> Median family income: $80,125 (24th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.3% (4th lowest)

Source: Max Whittaker / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Nevada
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $81,680 (25th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $13,543 (20th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,990 (18th highest)
> Median family income: $74,077 (18th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.5% (21st highest)

Source: Sean Pavone / iStock via Getty Images

New Hampshire
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $83,859 (22nd highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $15,267 (12th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,832 (8th highest)
> Median family income: $97,001 (6th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 1.8% (the lowest)

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Source: John Moore / Getty Images News via Getty Images

New Jersey
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $97,717 (5th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $19,811 (5th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,750 (9th highest)
> Median family income: $104,804 (3rd highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.7% (13th lowest)

Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

New Mexico
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $72,948 (4th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,784 (16th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,297 (17th lowest)
> Median family income: $62,611 (4th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 5.4% (3rd highest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

New York
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $112,751 (the highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $20,092 (4th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $11,180 (5th highest)
> Median family income: $87,270 (14th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.8% (16th highest)

Source: Boogich / iStock via Getty Images

North Carolina
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $78,686 (16th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $11,360 (23rd lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,267 (15th lowest)
> Median family income: $70,978 (13th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.8% (15th highest)

Source: Andrew Burton / Getty Images

North Dakota
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $80,475 (22nd lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,236 (9th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,824 (22nd highest)
> Median family income: $86,798 (15th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.5% (10th lowest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Ohio
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $73,570 (5th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,324 (10th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $8,904 (7th lowest)
> Median family income: $74,391 (20th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.9% (13th highest)

Source: raksybH / Getty Images

Oklahoma
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $78,408 (15th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,059 (8th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,223 (13th lowest)
> Median family income: $67,511 (8th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 4.3% (8th highest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Oregon
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $92,861 (9th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $15,607 (11th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,175 (15th highest)
> Median family income: $80,630 (23rd highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.2% (25th highest)

Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Pennsylvania
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $83,813 (23rd highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $12,412 (25th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,903 (21st highest)
> Median family income: $80,996 (21st highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.2% (24th highest)

Source: Image Source / Image Source via Getty Images

Rhode Island
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $84,019 (21st highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $14,502 (15th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,834 (7th highest)
> Median family income: $89,330 (13th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3% (24th lowest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

South Carolina
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $72,542 (3rd lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $11,096 (22nd lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,086 (11th lowest)
> Median family income: $68,813 (10th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 4.3% (9th highest)

Source: Jacek_Sopotnicki / Getty Images

South Dakota
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $78,824 (17th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $9,670 (4th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,546 (23rd lowest)
> Median family income: $77,042 (24th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.5% (20th highest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Tennessee
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $74,197 (7th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,906 (18th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,595 (24th lowest)
> Median family income: $68,793 (9th lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 4.1% (10th highest)

Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images

Texas
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $76,087 (10th lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $13,475 (22nd highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $8,660 (4th lowest)
> Median family income: $76,073 (22nd lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 3.9% (12th highest)

Source: LizzieMaher / iStock via Getty Images

Utah
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $80,653 (23rd lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $12,508 (24th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,239 (14th lowest)
> Median family income: $84,590 (18th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.1% (3rd lowest)

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Source: bakerjarvis / Getty Images

Vermont
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $94,517 (8th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $14,321 (16th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $11,430 (4th highest)
> Median family income: $83,023 (19th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.5% (8th lowest)

Virginia
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $91,515 (13th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $15,870 (10th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,064 (17th highest)
> Median family income: $93,284 (7th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.8% (19th lowest)

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Source: PhilAugustavo / Getty Images

Washington
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $92,387 (10th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $17,824 (7th highest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $10,525 (11th highest)
> Median family income: $92,422 (11th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.6% (12th lowest)

Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

West Virginia
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $85,913 (18th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $9,133 (2nd lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $8,634 (3rd lowest)
> Median family income: $61,707 (2nd lowest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 5.2% (5th highest)

Source: JamesBrey / iStock via Getty Images

Wisconsin
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $79,856 (21st lowest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,970 (19th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,058 (9th lowest)
> Median family income: $80,844 (22nd highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.5% (6th lowest)

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Source: Spencer Platt / Getty Images News via Getty Images

Wyoming
> Annual cost of living (family of 4): $91,802 (12th highest)
> Annual housing costs (family of 4): $10,423 (13th lowest)
> Annual food costs (family of 4): $9,917 (20th highest)
> Median family income: $81,290 (20th highest)
> Families earning less than $10,000: 2.7% (18th lowest)

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