Hello Everyone, Lucas here at Compass Real Estate. In this article, we’ll be breaking down the cost of living in Seattle. So Seattle is one of the most expensive cities in the nation. It’s not LA, it’s not New York, it’s not the Bay Area, but it’s getting really up there. As matter of fact, Seattle is twice as expensive, living here is twice as expensive as it is living in other parts of the United States. In this video, we’re gonna break down what those costs look like. So if you’re considering a move or if you’re considering a visit, you can plan accordingly. So before we dive in, I should say that although the cost of living in Seattle is much higher, incomes are also much higher compared to other areas in the United States.
The reason for that is we have a ton of tech companies in the area so incomes tend to be a lot more. There’s also a ton of benefits that come with living in Seattle, such as awesome food, outdoors, and is just an awesome city to be a part of, right? So these are all things for you to consider prior to moving to the city. Now, full disclosure, I am a local Seattle realtor. So if you have any questions about housing in the city, what the cost of things is, if you need help finding a place, if you just have any general questions, we would love to help. We get tons of individuals that message us after watching a video on YouTube and we love to connect with you. So don’t hesitate to reach out.
The first aspect we’re gonna break down is housing since housing tends to be the biggest expense for anyone in general. For any American, housing tends to be their number one expense. And housing in Seattle is very expensive. As a matter of fact, it was about three times higher than the rest of the United States. In an average city in the United States, our prices are about three times higher. And what does that mean? So for example, if you’re looking for a single-family home somewhere within Seattle, the five-mile radius of the hub of Seattle, you’re gonna be paying probably an average of about $850,000. Then that’s probably gonna get you a 1600 square foot home. Right. 850,000 for around a 1,600 square foot home. Now the challenging part is it’s not much cheaper to rent. Rents in Seattle are also much higher than what it is in the rest of the United States. If you were to rent let’s say a 1600 square foot home within the hub of Seattle, you’re gonna be looking at about $3,000 a month for rent. A one-bedroom condo in the city is probably gonna run you about 21, $2,200 for probably around six square feet of living space. So housing is very, very expensive in Seattle.
The second aspect, we’re gonna dive into is transportation. So the good news is transportation is not too bad in Seattle well it’s not too expensive, I should say. And what I mean by that there is, King County has a great bus system, the Metro system in the city is pretty fantastic and pretty affordable. So a bus trip will cost you about $2.25. On top of that, there’s the link light rail that will cost you about $3.25. And that will take you up and down the hub of the city. So transportation is not too expensive and the good news, you don’t necessarily need a car. However, if you are living in the city and you do want to have a car, parking is a real issue and you might be having to pay for parking on a monthly basis if your home doesn’t provide you with one. For example, a lot of rentals in the area, a lot of leases, they rent you the parking spots separately anywhere from 150 to $300 a month. So if you don’t wanna have a car in Seattle, you don’t need one and it would probably be cheaper. And if you do wanna have a car in Seattle, something you want to factor in is the parking situation, which could add up. Now with that being said, let me also touch on the topic of commuting. Commuting in Seattle is one of the worst in the nation. The average commute in Seattle is about 30 minutes. So before you consider coming here, consider where you’re gonna be working and where you’re gonna be living, and make sure your commute is not too bad. ‘Cause traffic could get pretty jammed up.
So also on the topic of transportation something important to know is gas prices which are different all across the nation, right? So gas prices here in Seattle today are probably about $3.75 a gallon give or take. So they are more expensive than a lot of areas in the United States. I was just in for a week ago and I believe, a gallon of gas there was probably $2.90, so much cheaper than it was here in Seattle. Also, something that’s very unique to Seattle is you don’t necessarily need to live in the city. For example, if you go across the water to let’s say Bainbridge Island, there’s a lot of folks who live in Bainbridge Island and they take a ferry to downtown Seattle every day. That ferry will take you about 30 minutes. That way you live in a nice quiet area. And whenever you feel the need to come to the city, you take a 30-minute ferry. Or you can live South of Seattle and simply take a light rail that will take you to the city. Also, there’s a lot of individuals that leave on the Eastside, Bellevue, Issaquah, Sammamish, and they take I-90 to the hub of the city. So, just ’cause you’re coming to Seattle don’t necessarily think that you have to be in the hub of the city. There are, to be fair, Seattle council is working on solving the transportation and commuting problems, right? They’re having, they’re building more light rails that have projects to make the city more accessible. Since most professionals are commuting downtown for their work-life. But transportation is definitely something you should take into account prior to moving here.
All right. So food, you gotta eat. And luckily, in Seattle, you’re eating well. Seattle has some of the best restaurants, in my opinion in the nation. Amazing seafood and great quick bites all around. Seattle is definitely a food city. Now with that being said, the average grocery bill for Seattle residents, for a single person is about $415 a month. That’s where you’re gonna, if you’re a single individual, that’s about what you’re gonna be spending in a month on groceries and that’s about $70 higher than the average American city. So as you can see just about everything in Seattle is more expensive, but wages are also higher, there are way more job opportunities. And there are other benefits that come with the city of course. Now cost of going out to eat is certainly also getting more expensive in Seattle. For example, an average meal at a restaurant is gonna run you at about $22, give or take, right? So if you’re going out to dinner, you and your partner go out to dinner, have a few wan tres, maybe have a couple of glasses of wine, you’re gonna be spending about $80 a dinner easily after taxes and tip. So Seattle is definitely more expensive when it comes to food. Let’s dive into utilities. Utilities in Seattle are about 10% higher than the average American city. So you’re also gonna be spending a bit more on utilities here in Seattle. Also very important to know, Seattle does not have a state income tax, which is awesome but it does have a sales tax of 10.1%. So if you’re a newcomer to the city, factor that in, every purchase is gonna run you about 10.1% higher because of sales tax.
Now, I absolutely love the city it does comes with its pros and cons. The cost of living is much higher but at the same time, Seattle has, in my opinion, some of the most amazing opportunities for entrepreneurs, tech individuals, for artists, it has amazing restaurants, and it’s a very diverse city. And it’s a bit of a boiling pot where you get a little bit of everything from all over the United States and all over the world and that to me makes it a really awesome city and is the reason why I’ve been here for 11 years now. Again, if you guys have any real estate-related questions, don’t hesitate to reach out. Me and my team are always here to help or answer any questions you might have.
I hope you learn something from this blog and until next time. Take care.