Swarthmore 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.
IndexSwarthmorePennsylvaniaNational
Cost of living index139102100
IndexSwarthmorePennsylvaniaNational
Goods & Services index115103100
Groceries index117105100
Health care index9997100
Housing index19593100
Transportation index117112100
Utilities index121112100
A general summary of the cost of living index in Swarthmore, PA is shown above. Compared to the state average of Pennsylvania the cost of living index in Swarthmore, PA is 139, which is 37% higher than the average in Pennsylvania and compared to the national average it is 39% higher than. The cost of living index is made up of several categories. These are transportation at 9%, utilities at 10%, goods and services at 33%, housing at 30%, groceries at 13%, and health care at 5%. The bulk of the cost of living index comes from the categories of goods and services and housing. If you look at everyday goods and services they can be a good indicator in a certain city of the general costs of goods there. In Swarthmore, PA goods and services come in at 11% higher than the average in Pennsylvania and are 15% higher than compared to the nationwide average.

Did you know?

  • The cost of living in Swarthmore is 37% higher than the Pennsylvania average.
  • The cost of living in Swarthmore is 39% higher than the national average.
  • The cost of housing in Swarthmore is 95% higher than the national average.
  • Pennsylvania general sales tax is 18% higher than the national average.
  • Pennsylvania state income tax is 38% higher than the national average.

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Salary Calculator

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The salary calculator is used in order to provide a comparison of your current salary in Swarthmore, PA to another city of your choice. The calculator will inform you of what your salary needs to be in any specific city in order for you to maintain your living standard based on what the city’s cost of living is. As an example, if you are seeking to move to a city that has a higher cost of living compared to Swarthmore, PA, you would have to earn a higher income to maintain a standard of living that is similar. To get started with the Swarthmore, PA salary calculator, input the new city’s name and then move the slider to indicate your current income. The salary calculator will now process the numbers and show you whether you need to earn more or less in the chosen city. A comprehensive breakdown of the cost of living will also be shown.

Median Income & Debt-To-Income Ratio

Median IncomePer YearPer MonthMax Budget (28% DTI)Max Budget (36% DTI)
Owners$139,688$11,641$3,259$4,191
Renters$47,417$3,951$1,106$1,423
The percent of monthly income spent on housing can be a good indicator of the affordability of housing in Swarthmore, PA as well as the overall cost of living. As a general rule of thumb, the debt-to-income ratio (DTI) for homeowners or renters should be not more than 28 percent of gross income to be spent on housing related costs and not more than 36 percent of income on all expenses, including debts. The median income for Swarthmore, PA homeowners, is $139,688. This would allow for a maximum of $3,259 per month to be spent on housing costs. For renters, the median monthly income is $47,417 which would result in a maximum of $1,106 to be spent on rental costs.

Pennsylvania Sales Tax

StateGeneral Sales TaxWith Max Surtax
Pennsylvania6%8%

Pennsylvania Income Tax

StateIncome Tax (Low)Income Tax (High)
Pennsylvania3.07%3.07%
When you are determining the total cost of living in Swarthmore, PA you will want to make sure you consider both the Pennsylvania sales tax and the Pennsylvania 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 Pennsylvania is 6%, with the highest surtax being 8%. 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 Pennsylvania have a range from 3.07% to 3.07%.

Goods & Services

ItemSwarthmoreNational avg.Difference
Haircut $17.50$14.5919.9%
Beauty Salon $52.00$34.6849.9%
Toothpaste $2.36$2.474.6%
Shampoo $0.99$1.023.1%
Movie $10.75$9.878.9%
Bowling $5.04$4.3914.8%

Groceries

ItemSwarthmoreNational avg.Difference
Ground Beef $4.74$4.485.9%
Fried Chicken $1.69$1.4615.4%
Milk $2.25$2.364.5%
Potatoes $3.49$3.0614.0%
Pizza $10.74$9.2416.2%
Beer $8.39$8.632.8%

Health Care

ItemSwarthmoreNational avg.Difference
Optometrist $106.00$99.786.2%
Doctor $118.75$105.0313.1%
Dentist $95.00$88.707.1%
Ibuprofen $9.89$9.415.1%
Lipitor $200.00$298.5033.0%

Housing

ItemSwarthmoreNational avg.Difference
Home Price $410,900.00$175,700.00133.9%
Avg. Mortgage Payment $1,419.25$1,081.0331.3%
Apartment Rent $972.00$920.005.7%

Transportation

ItemSwarthmoreNational avg.Difference
Gasoline $2.46$2.0917.6%
Tire Balancing $52.00$45.2914.8%

Utilities

ItemSwarthmoreNational avg.Difference
All Electricity$186.98$170.809.5%
Phone $38.50$28.2636.3%
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.
Arcadia University, PA62311515%
Cheyney University, PA9291066%
Prospect Park, PA28894-6%
Audubon Park, NJ1,05196-4%
Chester, PA34,00790-10%
Swarthmore, PA6,19813939%

Cities with similar population

City, StatePopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
Hempstead, TX6,19781-19%
Raleigh Hills, OR6,19714848%
West Miami, FL6,19711111%
Schuyler, NE6,19585-15%
Decatur, TX6,20197-3%
Swarthmore, PA6,19813939%
Source: The Swarthmore, PA cost of living data displayed above is derived from the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) for the fourth quarter of 2015.