Charlotte cost of living index

In the event that the cost of living data was unavailable for this city, estimates based upon nearby cities were used. Each cost of living index is based on a national average of 100. If the amount is below 100, it is lower than the national average. If the amount is above 100, it is higher than the national average.
IndexCharlotteNorth CarolinaNational
Cost of living index9997100
IndexCharlotteNorth CarolinaNational
Goods & Services index97101100
Groceries index100100100
Health care index101104100
Housing index9787100
Transportation index100102100
Utilities index110100100
A general overview of the cost of living index for Charlotte, NC is displayed above. In Charlotte, NC, the overall cost of living index is 99, which is 3% higher than the North Carolina average and 1% lower than the U.S. average. The following categories are used to calculate the overall cost of living index: goods/services (33%), housing (30%), groceries (13%), utilities (10%), transportation (9%) and health care (5%). From the list, it is clear that the categories of goods/services and housing are responsible for the largest portions of the overall cost of living index. As a general rule, everyday goods and services provide an accurate measure of the general cost of goods in any given city. In the case of Charlotte, NC, the city's goods and services are 3% lower than the North Carolina average and 3% lower than the U.S. average.

Did you know?

  • The cost of living in Charlotte is 3% higher than the North Carolina average.
  • The cost of living in Charlotte is 1% lower than the national average.
  • The cost of housing in Charlotte is 3% lower than the national average.
  • North Carolina general sales tax is 7% lower than the national average.
  • North Carolina state income tax is 159% higher than the national average.

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Salary Calculator

This is how much you would need to earn in
Price difference in compared to
Cost of living index
Goods & Services index
Groceries index
Health care index
Housing index
Transportation index
Utilities index
The salary calculator allows you to compare how much your current salary in Charlotte, NC would be worth in another city. In other words, the salary calculator will adjust the figure you enter for cost of living so that you can determine how much more or much less you would need to earn while maintaining your current quality of living. If you are considering relocating to a more expensive city than Charlotte, NC, the calculator will tell you how much more you need to earn so you can assess job offers more accurately. The Charlotte, NC salary calculator is easy to use. All you do is enter the name of another city, then move the slider to your current income. After that, the salary calculator will crunch the numbers for you and give you the information you need about the place you are considering going. Additionally, it will show a detailed breakdown of the cost of living.

Median Income & Debt-To-Income Ratio

Median IncomePer YearPer MonthMax Budget (28% DTI)Max Budget (36% DTI)
Owners$73,766$6,147$1,721$2,213
Renters$35,073$2,923$818$1,052
A good way to judge both the affordability of the housing and the cost of living is by simply calculating the maximum that a person should spend on housing in Charlotte, NC, otherwise known as the debt-to-income ratio (DTI). The safest way to live in the city is to avoid spending more than 28 percent of the gross income that one earns on costs that pertain to housing and no more than 36 percent on all expenses and debts. Charlotte, NC has a median income of about $73,766 for people who own homes. Based on that number, a person should spend a maximum of $1,721 on expenses related to housing. Renters have a slightly different median income, which is $35,073. Based on this average, renters should spend no more than $818 on all of their rental costs if they want to maintain a non-impoverished standard of living.

North Carolina Sales Tax

StateGeneral Sales TaxWith Max Surtax
North Carolina4.75%7.5%

North Carolina Income Tax

StateIncome Tax (Low)Income Tax (High)
North Carolina5.75%5.75%
When you are determining the total cost of living in Charlotte, NC you will want to make sure you consider both the North Carolina sales tax and the North Carolina income tax rates. Sales tax come in the form of taxes levied on both services and goods that are sold. The sales tax rates are different state to state and range from zero sales tax to higher than 7%. The sales tax in North Carolina is 4.75%, with the highest surtax being 7.5%. Tax that is on income by the government is income tax. Different states have different income tax rates and these rates can be higher or lower dependent on the corresponding tax bracket. The state income tax rates are different state to state and range from no income tax to more than 9% income tax. The income tax rates in North Carolina have a range from 5.75% to 5.75%.

Goods & Services

ItemCharlotteNational avg.Difference
Haircut $12.40$14.5915.0%
Beauty Salon $36.40$34.685.0%
Toothpaste $2.52$2.471.9%
Shampoo $1.08$1.025.7%
Movie $10.39$9.875.3%
Bowling $5.97$4.3935.9%

Groceries

ItemCharlotteNational avg.Difference
Ground Beef $4.51$4.480.7%
Fried Chicken $1.59$1.468.6%
Milk $2.59$2.369.9%
Potatoes $3.37$3.0610.1%
Pizza $8.49$9.248.1%
Beer $8.34$8.633.4%

Health Care

ItemCharlotteNational avg.Difference
Optometrist $119.20$99.7819.5%
Doctor $95.20$105.039.4%
Dentist $91.20$88.702.8%
Ibuprofen $9.12$9.413.1%
Lipitor $322.28$298.508.0%

Housing

ItemCharlotteNational avg.Difference
Home Price $170,200.00$175,700.003.1%
Avg. Mortgage Payment $879.18$1,081.0318.7%
Apartment Rent $902.00$920.002.0%

Transportation

ItemCharlotteNational avg.Difference
Gasoline $2.19$2.094.9%
Tire Balancing $39.18$45.2913.5%

Utilities

ItemCharlotteNational avg.Difference
All Electricity$170.61$170.800.1%
Phone $35.01$28.2623.9%
Although the cost of living data is updated regularly, this cost of living information is to be used as estimates only as prices can change on an ongoing basis.

Nearby cities with low cost of living

City, StatePopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
Riverview, SC23288-12%
Stanley, NC3,59191-9%
McAdenville, NC61795-5%
Hemby Bridge, NC1,34195-5%
Pineville, NC7,85595-5%
Charlotte, NC774,80799-1%

Cities with similar population

City, StatePopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
Fort Worth, TX778,57396-4%
Columbus, OH811,94389-11%
San Francisco, CA829,07218989%
Indianapolis, IN835,09788-12%
Jacksonville, FL837,53398-2%
Charlotte, NC774,80799-1%
Source: The Charlotte, NC cost of living data displayed above is derived from the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) for the fourth quarter of 2015.