Overall 78%
Goods & Services 23%
Housing 195%
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The cost of living index is based on a national average of 100. For example, if the cost of living is 90, then it is 10% lower than average. If the cost of living is 110, then it is 10% higher than average. The breakdown for each index is as follows: goods & services (33%), groceries (13%), health care (5%), housing (30%), transportation (9%) and utilities (10%). If the cost of living data was unavailable for this city, estimates based upon nearby cities were used.
IndexSouth San FranciscoCaliforniaNational
Cost of living178140100
Goods & Services123109100
Health care123109100

Key findings

  • The cost of living in South San Francisco is 28% higher than the California average
  • The cost of living in South San Francisco is 78% higher than the national average
  • South San Francisco housing is 195% higher than the national average
  • California general sales tax is 42% higher than the national average
  • California state income tax is 59% lower than the national average

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Compare South San Francisco, CA Cost of Living

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      Price difference in compared to
      Cost of living index
      Goods & Services index
      Groceries index
      Health care index
      Housing index
      Transportation index
      Utilities index

      Median Income & Debt-To-Income Ratio

      Median IncomePer YearPer MonthMax Budget (28% DTI)Max Budget (36% DTI)
      The percentage of monthly income spent on housing related expenses can help predict the affordability of housing in South San Francisco, CA, as well as what the overall cost of living might be. Generally, a good rule to follow is that the debt-to-income (DTI) level you want to maintain is 28 percent or less of your income on your rent or mortgage payments and not more than 36 percent of income on all expenses and debts. In South San Francisco, homeowners have a median income of $105,952. Using that number, a maximum of $2,472 per month should be allocated to housing expenses. For those who are renting instead of owning, the median income is $64,134, which means there is a maximum of $1,496 to be spent on the costs of renting a home or apartment.

      California Sales Tax

      StateGeneral Sales TaxWith Max Surtax

      California Income Tax

      StateIncome Tax (Low)Income Tax (High)

      Goods & Services

      ItemSouth San FranciscoNational avg.Difference
      Haircut $23.94$20.2718.1%
      Beauty Salon $76.38$40.3989.1%
      Toothpaste $2.93$2.3624.1%
      Shampoo $1.32$1.0822.6%
      Movie $16.04$10.9946.0%
      Bowling $20.50$15.4932.3%


      ItemSouth San FranciscoNational avg.Difference
      Ground Beef $4.38$4.301.8%
      Fried Chicken $1.80$1.4028.9%
      Milk $2.55$2.2015.9%
      Potatoes $3.74$3.2216.3%
      Pizza $12.49$10.7416.3%
      Beer $10.21$9.606.4%

      Health Care

      ItemSouth San FranciscoNational avg.Difference
      Optometrist $136.56$109.7324.5%
      Doctor $148.50$118.3425.5%
      Dentist $133.23$100.9432.0%
      Ibuprofen $12.21$9.9323.0%
      Lipitor $479.93$469.532.2%


      ItemSouth San FranciscoNational avg.Difference
      Home Price $644,500.00$184,700.00248.9%
      Avg. Mortgage Payment $4,448.29$1,229.62261.8%
      Apartment Rent $1,607.00$949.0069.3%


      ItemSouth San FranciscoNational avg.Difference
      Gasoline $4.03$2.7148.5%
      Tire Balancing $69.34$51.8633.7%


      ItemSouth San FranciscoNational avg.Difference
      All Electricity$266.44$170.8456.0%
      Phone $196.49$187.185.0%
      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

      CityPopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
      Ashland, CA24,28813837.8%
      Cherryland, CA15,06613838.4%
      San Leandro, CA89,03914949.0%
      Emeryville, CA11,11115049.7%
      San Lorenzo, CA24,79015050.2%
      South San Francisco, CA66,58717878.4%

      Cities with similar population

      CityPopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
      Camarillo, CA66,63015353.1%
      Palo Alto, CA66,649303203.1%
      Portland, ME66,64911111.3%
      Port Coquitlam, BC66,485n/a 
      Woodbury, MN66,69911919.2%
      South San Francisco, CA66,58717878.4%
      Source: This data reflects 2021 and was released from C2ER in January, 2022; this is the most current data available.