Home FAQ Is Tacoma, WA, Expensive?

Is Tacoma, WA, Expensive?

Is Tacoma, WA, Expensive?

Cost of Living in Tacoma, WA

Tacoma, Washington, located in Pierce County, is known for its vibrant culture, stunning natural beauty, and diverse community. When considering the cost of living in Tacoma, it's critical to understand that ‘expensive' is a relative term. It depends largely on where you're coming from and your personal lifestyle. However, compared to the national average, Tacoma is considered more expensive in several aspects.

Housing Costs in Tacoma

The most significant factor contributing to Tacoma's higher cost of living is housing. The median home cost in Tacoma is higher than the national average. According to Zillow, as of 2021, the median home value in Tacoma is $394,200, while the national average is $277,700. Rent prices are also relatively high in Tacoma compared to other cities in the United States. For instance, a one-bedroom apartment in the city center may cost around $1,400 per month.

Transportation and Utilities Cost

Transportation is another category where Tacoma exceeds the national average. Gas prices, insurance rates, and vehicle maintenance costs tend to be higher here. As for utilities, residents of Tacoma generally pay more for basic services such as electricity, heating, cooling, water, and garbage than the national average.

Food and Healthcare Costs

When it comes to grocery expenses, Tacoma is slightly above the national average. Eating out at restaurants also tends to be more expensive in Tacoma than in many other cities. Healthcare is another area where Tacoma outpaces the national average. Doctor visits, dentist appointments, and prescription medicine generally cost more here.

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Tacoma's Affordability Compared to Surrounding Areas


While Tacoma may be more expensive than many other cities in the United States, it's important to note that it's significantly more affordable than other cities in the Pacific Northwest, especially Seattle. Seattle's cost of living is notoriously high, and Tacoma offers a more affordable alternative with a similar quality of life, cultural opportunities, and access to outdoor activities.

Ultimately, the question of whether Tacoma is expensive or not depends on your personal financial situation, lifestyle choices, and where you're moving from. The city has a lot to offer, from its thriving arts scene to its beautiful parks and waterfront. By carefully planning your budget and spending wisely, it's possible to enjoy the best of Tacoma's lifestyle without breaking the bank.

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