Las Vegas Cost of Living

Las Vegas Cost of Living

If you're thinking of moving to Las Vegas and want to know about the costs of living there, you're in luck.  This article goes over the cost of living in Las Vegas, Nevada!

Is It Expensive to Live in Las Vegas?

With a cost of living that is just 3% above the national average, Las Vegas can be an excellent choice for relocation, balancing its world-famous entertainment and natural beauty with a reasonable price.

Cost of Living in Las Vegas

Visiting vs. Living

Vegas is known as one of the greatest cities in the world for tourists.  24-7 entertainment, great food, and beautiful weather keep people coming back time and again to explore what The Entertainment Capital of the World has to offer with its endless entertainment options.

The day-to-day residential experience is fundamentally different from being a tourist.  Once you understand a bit about the residential costs of living in Las Vegas, you’ll be better able to judge if relocating is right for you.

Housing

Housing in Las Vegas is in high demand.  Like many other areas of the country, rents and property values have gone up during COVID, and people from all parts of the country are moving there in large numbers.  Therefore, housing costs in Las Vegas are about 8% higher than the national average. The prices can vary widely, depending on how close to the Vegas Strip you want to live or if you live in a community such as Summerlin

Is Las Vegas Affordable to Live?

On average, a 1-bedroom apartment goes for around $1,400/month, while a 2-bedroom may run you about $1,850 or more.  These prices compare with other southwestern cities like Phoenix, AZ and Los Angeles, CA, where the costs are higher. 

The median cost of a house in Las Vegas is about $435,000 (at the time of writing), which is just over half the median of $700,000 for Scottsdale, AZ.  Depending on where you are relocating from, the housing costs in Las Vegas may be an improvement for you.  

Utilities

Utility costs in Las Vegas are usually pretty reasonable, but can be higher during certain months, such as in the summer when you use the air conditioning more since temperatures can rise up to 107 (or more!).  The total costs for utilities run about 10% below the national average.

Food

Dining in Las Vegas can have huge variable costs, given all the exquisite offerings in and around the Strip.  Average residents pay about 4% more than other places, but there is plenty of room for discretion.

Healthcare

Prices are on the rise everywhere, and Las Vegas healthcare is no different.  Insurance prices are slightly lower than the national average, but employee contributions are a bit higher, so the overall number does not tell the whole story.  In 2022, the average Nevadan will spend about 14% of their salary on health insurance, including premiums and deductibles. 

Transportation

Getting around in Las Vegas can be more expensive, and costs about 14% more than average.  Most people in the city drive, and gas prices are higher compared to other cities.  Luckily, the typical commute is shorter than the national average and public buses are reasonably priced. 

Lyft and Uber are also prevalent modes of transport for tourists and residents, with prices varying depending on time you hail a ride and where you are going.  

Entertainment and Fitness

With so much available in Las Vegas, your entertainment costs could really be anything.  Catching a movie will run you about the same as the national average, and there are countless of options to take advantage of on the Strip. Depending on your ideas of fun and entertainment, these prices will vary as well.  In addition, the average health club membership is about $30 per month, and many people cut costs by exercising outside early in the morning, especially in the summer.

Taxes

In some ways, Nevada is a bit of a tax haven.  There is no state income tax, which is one of the drivers of relocation to the area.  Property taxes are .65%, which compares favorably to the national average of 1.07%. 

However, there is a state sales tax of 4.6%, which is high, and Clark County has its own sales tax of 3.78%.  So, in a sense, you could say that consumption is more heavily taxed than wealth-building in Las Vegas.

Moving Costs   

The actual move to Las Vegas comes with a variable cost depending on where you’re moving from and what your situation is.  When planning your move, keep in mind that you may need to consider cross-country movers, transportation, and storage. 

Also, you may require accommodations for a time if you arrive before closing on a house.  Finally, fees, deposits, and furnishings for apartments may factor in as well.

Salary

The pay scale in Las Vegas may seem favorable if you are not coming from places like L.A., New York, Boston, or D.C.   The average hourly wage is about $17.50 per hour, which earns $36,000 per year.

The average salary in Las Vegas is about $64,000, which is below the $67,000 national average.  When trying to figure out whether you will be able to cover your costs, remember the 30% rule – don’t spend more than 30% of your gross income on housing.  So, for that average 2-bedroom apartment of $1,850 per month, the total household income should in theory exceed $6,170 per month or $74,000 per year.

Is Las Vegas Worth It?

Las Vegas is a growing city, with people from all over coming to put down roods.  The cost of living, weather, surrounding outdoor recreation, entertainment, and culture all come into play here.

Be sure to do your own research and weigh the pros and cons prior to making your deicion to move to Las Vegas for cost of living, or what the city has to offer has a whole.

*Disclaimer: This article is meant for informational purposes only and not to be seen as fact based. Numbers are estimated and deemed acurate at the time of writing. 

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