Just so you know, here are the most expensive U.S. cities to live in

What does living on your own really cost? Sometimes, we try not to think about how much money is flying out of our pockets on a monthly basis, but the Economic Policy Institute has made a handy dandy calculator so we can be somewhat in the know of our finances.

Just enter in the size of your household, if you have any children and where you live, and it spits out a sheet detailing the average price of your rent, as well as the monthly costs of food, transportation and the like so you know exactly what to budget each month and how to prepare for any upcoming costs.

The Washington Post reported on this data, and used it to rank the cities from least to most expensive for single people as well as families. The top five cities are not surprising.

Honolulu tops the list, with the second highest rent and the largest amount of taxes. It costs an average of $778 a month in taxes, and $1,267 a month to rent a studio there.

It’s followed by the cities of Stamford (which has the highest rent with $1,269 for a studio), San Francisco, New York and Washington D.C.

What highly affects these rankings is not just rent and taxes, but also childcare. D.C. comes out at the most expensive place for a family of four to care for their children, with childcare costs hitting a whopping $2,597 a month.

It’s important to remember that these numbers are a general baseline. It doesn’t take into consideration savings or debt, as well as the broad variation in rent by area within the cities. If your budget doesn’t exactly match up, that’s to be expected.

This information is perfect, however, for someone looking to move or someone who has just moved in. While these are hectic times, you’ll have a vague idea of what to expect when things settle. Keeping an eye on your finances and a general estimate of your expenses is a surefire way to stay comfortable and competent, which are the two magic words when it comes to living on your own.

(Image via Shutterstock)

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