Eau Claire Is Pretty Cheap (in a Good Way)

V1 Staff |

Eau Claire doesn’t just seem like an inexpensive place to live – it actually is inexpensive, at least according to the number crunchers at the Council for Community and Economic Research. Since 1968, the council has calculated the cost of living in hundreds of cities nationwide, allowing for comparisons of the overall cost of the goods and services we buy. Based upon a national average scale set to 100, Eau Claire’s cost of living was calculated to be 95.0, the city’s Economic Development Division reported Jan. 27. In other words, what the average American pays a buck for we Chippewa Vallias can get for just 95 cents. Over the course of a year, such differences – calculated from the cost of housing, utilities, groceries, health care, transportation, and more – add up. Living expenses in Eau Claire were on the low end among the six Wisconsin metro areas in the survey. Madison topped the list at 106.5, with Milwaukee just below the national average at 99.5 and Fond du Lac coming in with 96.8. Wisconsin Rapids (92.2) and Green Bay (91.3) are apparently even less expensive than Eau Claire. Overall, the Badger State looks pretty good compared with the cities that top the list: Last fall, Manhattan’s cost-of-living index was pegged at 232.