The cost of living in Washington is 5.9% higher than the US average. According to MIT, the required living wage for a family of four with two working parents in Washington is $95,068 vs the national average for a family of four with two working parents of $89,744. The median income of a Washington household is $77,006.
The average home price in Washington is $366,800, which is higher than the US average home price of $229,800. Median rent in Washington is $1,337/mo which is higher than the US average rent of $1,096/mo. If you want to adjust homes prices to local incomes, the ratio of home prices to median household income is about 4.8 to 1. That means it takes roughly 4.8 years of a full salary to pay off a house. That compares to the national average of 3.5 to 1.
All in all, Washington has a high cost of living compared to America as a whole.
Yes, Washington is a dangerous state as it ranks as the #18 most dangerous state in the United States based on our analysis of the latest FBI Crime Data. The violent crime rate in Washington ranks 35th most dangerous in the United States -- 20.58% better than US average violent crime rate. The property crime rate in the Evergreen State ranks fourth most dangerous in the United States -- 39.81% worse than US average property crime rate. The latest reporting year from the FBI was 2022.
Yes, Seattle is a dangerous city. Seattle ranks as the #12 most dangerous out of 328 major cities over 100,000 people in the United States based on our analysis of the latest FBI Crime Data. Keep in mind that are always safe and dangerous parts of any city, so even though Seattle might be considered dangerous you still need to be aware of where you are. For example, Hawthorne Hills is the safest in Seattle, while Belltown is considered dangerous by many based on recent crime stats.
Compared to other big cities, the violent crime rate in Seattle ranks 6highest in America -- 51.4% worse than US average violent crime rate. The property crime rate in the ranks 12th highest in the United States -- 109.65% worse than US average property crime rate. Note the latest reporting year from the FBI was 2022 and that no city in America is "dangerous". Despite the uptick in murders, it's nothing like you'd see in Tijuana or Caracas where the murder rate is 2x any American city.
The county in Washington with the lowest cost of living is Snohomish County. The average living wage in Snohomish County is $103,576 according to MIT data. Snohomish County has the lowest cost of living because it has relatively less expensive childcare and housing costs compared to Washington as a whole. Childcare costs $21,546 a year in Snohomish County for two children compared to the Washington average of $19,075. Housing costs, defined as a blend of the average rent and average mortgage payment, are $22,872 per year in Snohomish County compared to $17,877 on average in Washington.
The cheapest housing market in Washington is Wapato. The average home value in Wapato is $109,400, the lowest in the state. The average home value in Washington is $366,800, almost 3.4 times higher than Wapato.