It’s true the cost of living in Las Vegas has gotten higher in the past few years. But how do we compare now to other major cities in the western part of the country?

The family and I just got back last week from visiting Southern California. As we were driving around, we saw that the gas prices were above $6.00 in most places. Which made me really understand that, in spite of the recent inflation, we’re still doing pretty well in Sin City when it comes to living expenses.

One major financial benefit to living in the Silver State comes around April for most of us. Nevada residents know and love the luxury of not having to pay state taxes. However, we do tend to make up for it in other places. Like outrageous electric bills in our triple digit summers.

Because the cost of living in most of California is so outrageously high, Las Vegas has seen a huge influx of our neighbors from the west moving into Nevada. Many California residents were able to sell their one house for the same price they could buy two here. In fact, two different houses in my neighborhood were purchased last year by someone from California who turned it into an AirBnb. Yes, those loud weekend partiers are quite annoying. Thanks for asking.

And now that the population is continuing to grow in Las Vegas, many long-term residents are looking to relocate to other cities.

But where can Las Vegas residents move to where they’re not paying more than we do here in Southern Nevada? Well, thanks to the help of a few statistics from, we’re going to break that down.

Here’s a list of other big cities in the western part of the United States, and how they compare to Las Vegas’s cost of living. We didn’t bother to list places a lot more rural than what we’re used to here. Because nobody likes their cheese moved that much.

– Wendy Rush, 96.3 KKLZ

  • Spokane, Washington

    Rich late afternoon light falls onto the buildings and architecture of Spokane Washington USA

    If you’ve been thinking about moving to Washington from Las Vegas, you’d better rule Seattle out. The housing there is over 90% higher than in Vegas. Now, Spokane is more conducive to what we’re used to here in Sin City. According to Payscale, the cost of living in Spokane is only 2.1% higher than Vegas. And housing is 6.7% lower!

  • Phoenix, Arizona

    Phoenix, Arizona, USA downtown cityscape at dusk.

    Weather-wise, Vegas and Phoenix are kissing cousins. And the similarity doesn’t end there. Payscale shows that the cost of living in Phoenix compared to Vegas is pretty close too. 3.3% higher overall with housing at 12.4% higher. Tucson is even closer to what we pay to live in Clark County. With an overall cost of living 2.7% higher than Vegas and housing at 4.4% lower.

  • Fresno, California

    Daytime aerial view of the historic downtown district of Fresno, California, USA.

    It’s true that most of California is way more expensive to live in than Vegas. But some cities in the Golden State are actually less expensive or pretty close. Fresno being one of them. Payscale says the cost of living is 6% higher, but housing is 4.6% lower! If you want a much lower cost of living than Vegas, try California City or nearby Tehachapi.

  • Boise, Idaho

    Idaho state capital with the Boise skyline background

    While many Californians are coming to Vegas, a good portion are also calling Boise their new home. Because it’s also cheaper, by comparison, to live there. But, according to Payscale, it costs more to live there than here. Payscale statistics show Boise’s cost of living compared to Vegas is about 6.6% higher, with housing being 13.9% higher.

  • Salt Lake City, Utah

    Salt Lake City skyline at sunset with Wasatch Mountains in the background, Utah, USA.

    You might expect Utah’s capital city to be more expensive than Vegas. And you’d be right. Payscale lists the cost of living in SLC as 7.2% higher than Vegas. And 11% higher housing.


  • Denver, Colorado

    Downtown Denver, Colorado, USA Drone Skyline Aerial Panorama.

    Denver, according to the statistics from Payscale, is 9.4% higher in their cost of living compared to Vegas. With housing being 23.2% higher. Colorado Springs, on the other hand, is only an hour and a half south of Denver and slightly more affordable. With the cost of living being 4% higher than Vegas and housing only 0.1% higher.

  • Portland, Oregon

    Portland, Oregon, USA downtown skyline with Mt. Hood at dawn.

    This one is probably no surprise. Portland has always been more expensive to live in than Las Vegas. But to be more specific, it ranked this year by Payscale at 23.1% higher overall. With housing being 46.7% higher! Yikes.

  • Albuquerque, New Mexico

    Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA downtown cityscape at twilight.

    Winner winner chicken dinner. Albuquerque is on the map (meaning not so small that nobody has heard of it) but also cheaper to live than Vegas. Payscale lists the cost of living at 8% lower than Vegas. And the housing at a whopping 20.6% lower!

  • Cheyenne, Wyoming

    Cheyenne, Wyoming - State Capitol Building. Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA.

    However, if you’re willing to go a little further to Wyoming, you will find something a a little more tolerable in Cheyenne. Payscale lists the overall cost of living in Cheyenne at 5.9% lower than Vegas. And the housing costs at 18.7% lower.

  • Bozeman, Montana

    Aerial View of Downtown Bozeman, Montana in Summer

    If you’re willing to move two states away to save some money on the cost of living, you’d better not be heading for Bozeman. Shockingly, the cost of living there is 20.9% higher than Vegas, according to Payscale. And the housing is listed at 46.7% higher! Did you get the memo about Bozeman? Me neither.

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