North Louisiana's Cost of Living Below National Average
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News Releases
    Back to Media Center
    November 7, 2016

    North Louisiana's Cost of Living Below National Average

    Shreveport - Monroe, La. — North Louisiana’s low cost of living means families can afford a higher standard of living. The Shreveport-Bossier City Metro has the lowest cost of living in the state with 89.4 percent of the national average, according to the Cost of Living Index recently released for the third quarter of 2016. The Monroe Metro cost of living is 97.2 percent of the national average. The Cost of Living Index estimates the amount of money needed to sustain a certain level of living, including basic expenses such as housing, utilities, grocery items, transportation, health care, and miscellaneous goods and services.
     
    “Our region’s low cost of living means families can get more bang for their buck,” said Scott Martinez, CEcD, President of North Louisiana Economic Partnership (NLEP). “Families in North Louisiana can afford a better lifestyle. One of the biggest expenses for any family is housing; and North Louisiana’s housing costs average nearly 13 points below the national average.”
     
    The Cost of Living Index is compiled by the Council for Community and Economic Research and measures regional differences in the cost of consumer goods and services. It is based on more than 90,000 prices collected during the same period by chambers of commerce, economic development organizations, and universities in participating urban areas. 
     
    NLEP, an Accredited Economic Development Organization for 14 parishes in North Louisiana, gathers the pricing information for the Shreveport-Bossier City MSA. The University of Louisiana at Monroe Center for Business and Economic Research gathers the data for the Monroe MSA.  The information is compiled into a composite index, which is based on six weighted categories – grocery items (13.24%), housing (28.04%), utilities (10.31%), transportation (11.16%), health care (4.36%) and miscellaneous goods and services (32.89%).
     
    The Shreveport-Bossier City MSA includes all of Caddo, Bossier, De Soto and Webster Parishes. For the Shreveport-Bossier City MSA, the two lowest cost categories are utilities at 73.5 percent of the national average and housing at 86.0 percent of the national average.

    The Monroe MSA includes all of Ouachita and Union Parishes. For Monroe, the two most affordable cost categories are housing at 88.2 percent and transportation at 90.5 percent.
     
    The Cost of Living Index is often used when comparing how expensive it is to live in one city versus another. As you can see from the chart below, North Louisiana is a much more affordable place to live as compared with competing metros. For example, the cost of living in North Louisiana communities average between 6 to 13.8 percentage points less than Dallas,Texas.  
     

    NLEP's website provides a useful tool to help families compare the cost of living in North Louisiana versus other communities in the U.S. Copy and paste nlep.org/COLIcalculator in your browser or go to www.nlep.org, click Regional Data Center, and go to Cost of Living to access our Cost of Living Calculator. It allows you to determine the level of income you would need to move to Shreveport or Monroe and maintain your current standard of living. For example, if you earned $50,000 in Denver, Colorado, you would only need to earn $40,410 in Shreveport and $42,420 in Monroe to have a comparable standard of living.
NLEP Events
  • February 6, 2018

    NLEP's Top Event>>

    Billed as a Celebration of Economic Development, the Top Event features respected site selector, Del Boyette, President & CEO of Boyette Strategic Advisors, who will discuss economic development trends that impact North Louisiana. The Top Event will be held February 6th at Sam's Town Hotel, Shreveport, LA starting at 5:30pm with a Reception followed by the Dinner and Program at 6:30pm. NLEP's Annual Meeting is considered the largest economic development event in North Louisiana, attracting 500 attendees last year.  The Top Event will also honor NLEP's Top Award Winnners. Thank you to our Presenting Sponsor, CenturyLink.





     

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