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Could you afford to live comfortably in Silicon Valley?

San Francisco: Too costly for comfort?


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Everyone knows Silicon Valley is an expensive place to live. But wouldn’t you like to know if you can live here comfortably based on the salary that new job is offering before you pick up and move here?

Finance site GOBankingRates hopes to take some of the guessing out of the equation by surveying the level of income necessary to live comfortably in the most populous cities in the nation. The survey based its results on the 50-30-20 budgeting rule, which allocates 50 percent of your income to essentials such as housing, food and transportation costs; 30 percent to personal lifestyle expenses such as cell phone plans and cable bills; and 20 percent to savings.

Housing costs are a major concern for every US household, but it’s an especially sore spot for residents in the San Francisco Bay Area. The region, which encompasses San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose, typically ranks as one of the most expensive housing markets in the country.

So how big does your paycheck have to be to soak up the fog full time in the City by the Bay — aka the most expensive city on GoBankingRates’ list? Try $110,357.

A trip down the peninsula to San Jose will get you a comfortable living for $87,153 (No. 2 on the list), edging out No. 3 New York ($86,446).

If San Jose is still too steep for your pocketbook, perhaps you should consider a drive across the Bay Bridge to Oakland, where the minimum cost to live comfortably is $80,438 (No. 4).

Happy house hunting.


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