Cost of Living in Colorado vs Texas: How Each State Stacks Up

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Malcolm-Wiley Floyd

Aug 16, 2023

CEO and Co-Founder of Stairs Financial, a YC-backed startup that connects first-time home buyers with down payment assistance programs across the US. Malcolm-Wiley studied economics at Harvard and is a licensed mortgage broker.

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    Relocating from Colorado to Texas, or is it the other way around? Or, maybe you’re on the fence and trying to decide which state to move to. Either way, you’ll want to know the difference between the cost of living in Colorado vs Texas, so you see how your expenses will fare.

    We compared the price of everything from housing and childcare to eggs and bread so you have precise numbers to help you plan your post-move budget. Find out how each state stacks up, plus a city-by-city comparison of the cost of living in Houston, Denver, Dallas, Colorado Springs, and Austin.

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      Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered as legal or financial advice. Please consult an attorney, mortgage lender, or CPA for guidance on your specific situation.

      What is the cost of living in Colorado vs Texas?

      Colorado technically has a higher cost of living compared to Texas. Based on the cost of living index, the average price of housing, utilities, food, and other necessities is a little more than 13% higher in Colorado. Texas has a rating of 93 while Colorado has a rating of 105.5.

      However, the cost of living index is an overall rating, meaning not all of your expenses in Colorado will be higher than in Texas. Some items, such as food, cost about the same in either state. Other items, such as childcare, are notably more expensive in Colorado.

      To see how these cost of living differences will play out in your own life, it’s helpful to dig a little deeper. 

      Colorado vs Texas: How will your expenses stack up?

      In practical terms, the difference between your cost of living in Colorado vs Texas depends on the amount of your budget you need to dedicate to each major expense category.

      ExpenseColoradoTexas
      Median Home Price$543,143$303,971
      Mortgage*$3,469$2,371
      Rent$2,495$2,185
      Utilities $331$402
      Childcare$1,277$777
      State Income Tax4.4%0%
      Average Property Tax0.6%1.6%
      Loaf of Bread$3.80$2.94
      Gallon of Milk$3.09$2.81
      Dozen Eggs$5.77$5.43
      Gallon of Gas$3.96$3.46

      *Throughout this article, when we list monthly mortgage payments, we base our figures on a 30-year mortgage with a 20% down payment and an interest rate of 7.25%. We also include monthly property tax and homeowner’s insurance payments, based on average costs for the area. 

      How much money do you need to live comfortably in Colorado?

      The living wage for a single person in Colorado is $19.22 per hour. By that measure, you need to make $3,075 each month, or just under $40,000 a year, to live comfortably in the state. For a family of four with one working adult, you need to make $42.43 per hour ($6,788 each month) to live comfortably in Colorado. 

      How much money do you need to live comfortably in Texas?

      Based on the statewide living wage, you need to make $16.79 per hour or $2,715 each month, before taxes, to live comfortably in Texas as a single person. With a family of four and one working adult, you need to make $37.82 per hour or $6,050 each month. 

      Moving to Colorado or Texas? Learn more

      Differences in cost of living aren’t the only consideration when you plan a move. We’ve gathered even more information to help you compare the two states.

      Texas

      Colorado

      City-by-city cost of living comparison

      The average cost of living in a state is a good high-level indicator of how expensive it will be for you to live there. However, Colorado and Texas are big states, and prices can vary widely depending on where you choose to live. To get a more accurate picture, it’s useful to look at costs in the specific city you’re considering.

      We’ve gathered a side-by-side comparison of a few of the most popular cities in the two states. 

      Denver vs Dallas

      The cost of living is considerably higher in Denver vs Dallas. With the exception of average monthly utilities, expenses across the board are greater in Denver. For example, average monthly rent is around 16% higher than in Dallas, and the median home price is a full 82% higher.

      ExpenseDenverDallas
      Median Home Price$568,728$311,880
      Mortgage$3,625$2,427
      Rent$3,145$2,700
      Utilities$227$268
      Childcare$1,480$1,167
      Loaf of Bread$4.13$3.25
      Gallon of Milk$4.09$3.56
      Dozen Eggs$5.43$3.88
      Gallon of Gas$4.08$3.56

      Houston vs Denver

      In nearly every category, the cost of living in Denver is higher than in Houston as well. While some expenses, like gas, aren’t that far apart, other expenses like housing are considerably greater in the Mile High City. The median price of a home is a staggering 115% more in Denver than it is in Houston.

      ExpenseHoustonDenver
      Median Home Price$264,540$568,728
      Mortgage$2,086$3,625
      Rent$2,100$3,145
      Utilities$258$227
      Childcare$1,324$1,480
      Loaf of Bread$3.20$4.13
      Gallon of Milk$3.72$4.09
      Dozen Eggs$4.43$5.43
      Gallon of Gas$3.32$4.08

      Colorado Springs vs Austin

      When you consider individual expense categories, the difference between the cost of living in Colorado Springs vs Austin is a little more mixed. On average, housing prices are higher in Colorado Springs, while the cost of rent and utilities is higher in Austin. Nearly every other major expense is higher in Colorado Springs.

      ExpenseColorado SpringsAustin
      Median Home Price$449,952$303,971
      Mortgage$2,897$2,370
      Rent$2,231$2,650
      Utilities$261$272
      Childcare$1,493$1,215
      Loaf of Bread$3.80$2.94
      Gallon of Milk$4.28$4.32
      Dozen Eggs$5.70$5.14
      Gallon of Gas$3.96$3.72

      Lower your housing costs with down payment assistance

      Regardless of which state you move to, getting a down payment together can be a challenge, especially for first-time homebuyers

      But making the largest down payment possible is important, because it can lower your living expenses over the long term. A larger down payment not only reduces the amount of your mortgage, but in many cases it also gets you a lower interest rate on your loan. 

      Down payment assistance (DPA) can help you buy a home sooner and make a real impact on your housing costs. 

      The biggest struggle people have with getting down payment assistance is finding programs and learning about them. Until now, there hasn’t been a central source of information.

      Stairs Financial takes care of this struggle for you. Stairs connects you with experienced lenders in your area and shows you all of the DPA programs you might qualify for, so you can compare your options side-by-side and choose the one that benefits you most.

      Learn more about all your down payment assistance options.

      Find up to $15,000 towards a home 🏠

      Compare local down payment assistance and find a mortgage, fast.

      Where do you want to buy?
        Search by ZIP code, address, city, county, or neighborhood
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