Carmel-by-the-Sea cost of living index

Date & Last Updated: This data reflects 2019 and was released from C2ER in January, 2020; this is the most current data available.
The 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. The breakdown for each index is as follows: goods and services (33%), groceries (13%), health care (5%), housing (30%), transportation (9%) and utilities (10%). In the event that the cost of living data was unavailable for this city, estimates based upon nearby cities were used.
IndexCarmel-by-the-SeaCaliforniaNational
Cost of living248140100
IndexCarmel-by-the-SeaCaliforniaNational
Goods & Services130111100
Groceries126118100
Health care127113100
Housing527196100
Transportation137128100
Utilities121118100

Key findings

  • The cost of living in Carmel-by-the-Sea is 77% higher than the California average
  • The cost of living in Carmel-by-the-Sea is 148% higher than the national average
  • Carmel-by-the-Sea housing is 427% higher than the national average
  • California general sales tax is 42% higher than the national average
  • California state income tax is 55% lower than the national average

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Compare Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA Cost of Living To Other Cities

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      Groceries index
      Health care index
      Housing index
      Transportation index
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      Median Income & Debt-To-Income Ratio

      Median IncomePer YearPer MonthMax Budget (28% DTI)Max Budget (36% DTI)
      Owners$81,250$6,771$1,896$2,438
      Renters$90,263$7,522$2,106$2,708
      The affordability of the housing market in Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA as well as the overall cost of living can be predicted by what percent of the monthly income is spent on housing related costs. This is konwn as the debt-to-income ratio (DTI). The overall rule of thumb is that no more than 28% of your gross income should be spent on the overall costs related to housing and no more than 36% of gross income on all expenses and debts. Among Carmel-by-the-Sea homeowners, the median income is $81,250. This indicates that a monthly maximum of $1,896 should be spent by homeowners on all housing related costs. Renters have a median income of $90,263. This indicates that renters would have a maximum of $2,106 for their rent related monthly costs.

      California Sales Tax

      StateGeneral Sales TaxWith Max Surtax
      California7.25%10.5%

      California Income Tax

      StateIncome Tax (Low)Income Tax (High)
      California1%13.3%

      Goods & Services

      ItemCarmel-by-the-SeaNational avg.Difference
      Haircut $19.71$17.4912.7%
      Beauty Salon $67.86$38.1777.8%
      Toothpaste $2.93$2.3226.2%
      Shampoo $1.33$1.0131.4%
      Movie $12.11$10.7212.9%
      Bowling $19.83$13.8643.1%

      Groceries

      ItemCarmel-by-the-SeaNational avg.Difference
      Ground Beef $3.71$3.904.9%
      Fried Chicken $1.35$1.403.3%
      Milk $2.39$1.9621.8%
      Potatoes $2.66$3.1816.4%
      Pizza $13.70$10.3931.8%
      Beer $10.49$9.2313.7%

      Health Care

      ItemCarmel-by-the-SeaNational avg.Difference
      Optometrist $136.71$106.3428.6%
      Doctor $150.71$115.2530.8%
      Dentist $139.14$98.3841.4%
      Ibuprofen $11.99$9.2629.5%
      Lipitor $442.32$466.475.2%

      Housing

      ItemCarmel-by-the-SeaNational avg.Difference
      Home Price $1,226,300.00$184,700.00563.9%
      Avg. Mortgage Payment $3,196.29$1,273.32151.0%
      Apartment Rent $1,961.00$949.00106.6%

      Transportation

      ItemCarmel-by-the-SeaNational avg.Difference
      Gasoline $3.79$2.5946.2%
      Tire Balancing $61.00$48.9024.8%

      Utilities

      ItemCarmel-by-the-SeaNational avg.Difference
      All Electricity$228.47$167.6036.3%
      Phone $184.65$163.4213.0%
      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.
      Castroville, CA6,97811010%
      Boronda, CA1,38111616%
      Seaside, CA34,12012727%
      Marina, CA20,81612727%
      Del Rey Oaks, CA1,68314646%
      Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA3,852248148%

      Cities with similar population

      City, StatePopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
      Sewickley, PA3,85211212%
      Ashland, MO3,85194-6%
      Camdenton, MO3,85487-13%
      Valley Grande, AL3,85587-13%
      Shenandoah Farms, VA3,8551033%
      Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA3,852248148%
      Source: The Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA cost of living data displayed above is derived from the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) for 2019.