This Is The Actual Value Of A $100,000 Salary Across the U.S.

value of 100k salary in united states

A recent study by a financial information provider, SmartAsset, has found that earning a salary of $100,000 is no longer enough to maintain a comfortable lifestyle in certain cities.

Workers in New York City, Honolulu, and San Francisco, for example, take home just over $35,000 after taxes and adjustments for costs of living on a $100,000 salary.

SmartAsset analyzed salaries in 76 cities and adjusted them for taxes and cost of living to determine how much money residents would need to earn each year to have the spending power of a true $100,000 salary.

The cost-of-living data analyzed in the study includes the price of housing, groceries, utilities, transportation, and other goods and services, and reflects the cost-of-living index for the third quarter of 2022.

The analysis showed that residents of the three next most expensive U.S. cities, Washington, D.C., Long Beach, California, and Los Angeles, also struggle to maintain a comfortable lifestyle on a $100,000 salary, with a purchasing power of only around $45,000.

On the other hand, major cities like Houston and San Antonio come closest to achieving the true purchasing power of a six-figure salary, with around $80,000 worth of take-home pay.

Even in Memphis, Tennessee, where residents have the most purchasing power among the cities analyzed, those earning $100,000 only enjoy about $86,444 in take-home pay.

The study shows that U.S. cities with the most purchasing power are generally concentrated in the South, particularly in states like Texas and Tennessee, which have no personal income tax.

The analysis highlights the importance of considering the cost of living in different cities when evaluating salaries and financial goals.

Overall, the study suggests that a six-figure salary may not be as financially comfortable as it once was, particularly in certain cities with high costs of living, and that workers should take into account the local cost of living when evaluating job opportunities and negotiating salaries.

Sean Pavone /

Ten Cities Where $100K salary Goes The Farthest

1. Memphis, TN -$86,444
2. El Paso, TX -$84,966
3. Oklahoma City, OK – $84,498
4. Corpus Christi, TX -$83,443
5. Lubbock, TX $83,350
6. Houston, TX -$81,171
7. San Antonio, TX (Tie) – $80,124
8. Fort Worth, TX (Tie) – $80,124
9. Arlington, TX (Tie) – $80,124
10 St. Louis – $79,921

It is no wonder why so many people are moving to Texas. Total domination from the Lone Star state. 

central park new york city

Ten Cities Where $100K Salary Goes Almost Nowhere

10.Arlington, VA – $49,989
9. Seattle, WA – $48,959
8. Boston, MA – $46,588
7. Oakland, CA – $46,198
6. San Diego, CA – $46,167
5. Los Angeles – $44,623
4.Washington, DC – $44,307
3.San Francisco – $36,445
2. Honolulu – $36,026
1. New York – $35,791

Really makes you wonder why anyone would want to live in NYC or California. 

C. James

C. James is the managing editor at Wealth Gang. He has a degree in finance and a passion for creating passive income streams and wealth management.