Salem 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.
IndexSalemNew JerseyNational
Cost of living index96131100
IndexSalemNew JerseyNational
Goods & Services index108118100
Groceries index103116100
Health care index103111100
Housing index74166100
Transportation index96118100
Utilities index114110100
The above illustration supplies generalized information for the Salem, NJ cost of living index. Compared to other cities in New Jersey and cities across the country, the cost of living index in Salem, NJ is 96, which is 26% lower than the New Jersey average and 4% lower than that for the entire country. The index is comprised of the following criteria: cost of retail goods and services (33%), groceries (13%), health care (5%), housing (30%), cost of public/private transportation (9%) and utilities (10%). Everyday goods and services, along with housing account for 63 percent of the total cost of living index. Goods and services that are a necessity regardless of location provide an accurate general sense of the cost of living in one city versus another. As seen above, the cost of retail goods and services in Salem, NJ are 8% lower than the average for New Jersey and 8% higher than the rest of the country.

Did you know?

  • The cost of living in Salem is 26% lower than the New Jersey average.
  • The cost of living in Salem is 4% lower than the national average.
  • The cost of housing in Salem is 26% lower than the national average.
  • New Jersey general sales tax is 37% higher than the national average.
  • New Jersey state income tax is 37% lower 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 is meant to help you compare your salary in Salem, NJ to your potential earning power in another city. This can help you deduce what your salary would need to be in any given city in order for you to live the same lifestyle that you do in your current city. In other words, if you plan on moving to a city where the cost of living is higher than in Salem, NJ, you'll have to make more money in the new city in order to maintain the lifestyle you currently enjoy. To use the Salem, NJ salary calculator, simply input the new city, then move the adjustable slider to match your current income. Once you've selected your income, the calculator will determine if that income is sufficient to support your standard of living in the new city you entered. The calculator will also supply you with a rundown of living costs in the new city.

Median Income & Debt-To-Income Ratio

Median IncomePer YearPer MonthMax Budget (28% DTI)Max Budget (36% DTI)
If you want to find a good determining factor for the cost of living and the general affordability of housing in Salem, NJ, all you must look at is the percentage of monthly income that should be spent on housing expenses, otherwise known as the debt-to-income ratio (DTI). Generally speaking, no more than 28 percent of your total gross income should be spent on your housing expenses and not more than 36 percent of your gross income on total expenses, including debts. In Salem, NJ, the median monthly income is $58,942 for those who own their own homes. Under the standard rule, that income level would allow for $1,375 to be budgeted for housing expenses each month, at the most. Renters, on the other hand, earn about $18,414, per the median income in the area. That would allow for renters to spend up to $430 on monthly rental expenses.

New Jersey Sales Tax

StateGeneral Sales TaxWith Max Surtax
New Jersey7%7%

New Jersey Income Tax

StateIncome Tax (Low)Income Tax (High)
New Jersey1.4%8.97%
When considering the overall cost of living expenses in Salem, NJ, it's important to take into account the sales tax for New Jersey, as well as the rate for income tax in New Jersey. Goods and services sold to consumers in any state have some form of sales tax. Each state has its own tax code, which means that sales tax rates vary from state to state, ranging from over 7% in some states to as low as 0% in others. The maximum surtax for New Jersey is 7%, and the sales tax in the state of New Jersey is 7%. Alternatively, the tax imposed on your income by the state government is known as income tax. The rate for this tax also varies from state to state, and your rate is affected by your tax bracket, which is determined by your level of income. Income tax rates might be as high as 9%, down to as low as 0%. The range for income tax rates in New Jersey starts from 1.4% and goes up to 8.97%.

Goods & Services

ItemSalemNational avg.Difference
Haircut $14.00$14.594.1%
Beauty Salon $40.00$34.6815.3%
Toothpaste $2.22$2.4710.2%
Shampoo $0.91$1.0211.0%
Movie $11.50$9.8716.5%
Bowling $4.50$4.392.5%


ItemSalemNational avg.Difference
Ground Beef $4.42$4.481.3%
Fried Chicken $1.56$1.466.6%
Milk $2.14$2.369.2%
Potatoes $3.66$3.0619.6%
Pizza $8.49$9.248.1%
Beer $8.49$8.631.7%

Health Care

ItemSalemNational avg.Difference
Optometrist $118.00$99.7818.3%
Doctor $87.50$105.0316.7%
Dentist $97.50$88.709.9%
Ibuprofen $9.42$9.410.1%
Lipitor $328.49$298.5010.0%


ItemSalemNational avg.Difference
Home Price $115,100.00$175,700.0034.5%
Avg. Mortgage Payment $1,153.85$1,081.036.7%
Apartment Rent $850.00$920.007.6%


ItemSalemNational avg.Difference
Gasoline $1.99$2.095.0%
Tire Balancing $45.00$45.290.6%


ItemSalemNational avg.Difference
All Electricity$222.61$170.8030.3%
Phone $25.95$28.268.2%
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.
Seabrook Farms, NJ99591-9%
Bridgeton, NJ25,25297-3%
Fairton, NJ1,18299-1%
Penns Grove, NJ5,08298-2%
Hancocks Bridge, NJ1961011%
Salem, NJ5,04596-4%

Cities with similar population

City, StatePopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
Flora, IL5,04581-19%
Sheldon, IA5,04791-9%
Wapato, WA5,04386-14%
Harlan, IA5,04784-16%
Cresaptown, MD5,04895-5%
Salem, NJ5,04596-4%
Source: The Salem, NJ cost of living data displayed above is derived from the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) for the fourth quarter of 2015.