The 25 best places to live if you want to save a lot of money

f11photo/ShutterstockHow much money you need to save depends on where you live.
  • How much money you need to save depends on where you live.
  • Bankrate.com recently released a report detailing the best places to save for a six-month emergency fund in 50 US metro areas.
  • San Jose, California, was the hardest place to save money for emergencies, while Kansas City, Missouri, was the easiest.

Americans’ savings habits just aren’t cutting it.

The average American socks away 3.5% of their income every month, well below the standard recommendation of 10-15%. That’s leaving Americans with a median savings-account balance of $US5,200.

Additionally, 63% of Americans don’t have sufficient emergency savings, a statistic made all the more shocking considering that the general rule of thumb for an adequate emergency fund is to have six months’ worth of expenses at the ready.

While there are some steps you can take to cut back on everyday expenses and save more money, your savings account might be better off depending on where you live.

A new report by Bankrate.com outlines the best places to save money for a six-month emergency fund across 50 US metro areas.

It calculated the total monthly cost-of-living expenses (including mortgage payments, groceries, bills, insurance, taxes, credit-card payments, and more) for a typical family of four in each metro area, then multiplied that figure by six to get the amount needed for an emergency fund, enough to cover six months of expenses.

Bankrate.com then calculated how much money the family could save every year by deducting one year’s worth of those expenses from the median take-home pay for their metro area.

The ranking was determined by what percentage of a recommended six-month emergency fund the typical family would be able to save based on how much the household earns and spends. For example, in Memphis, Tennessee, a family could save 56% of their emergency-fund goal in one year.

While emergency funds fare better in some places than others, the final numbers shed light on yet another money woe in the US: It’s hard, if not impossible, to save for an emergency fund in just one year. Even in the easiest metro area to save money – Kansas City, Missouri – the typical family can save as much as 63% of their emergency-fund goal in just one year.

We narrowed down the list to the 25 best places in the US to live to save money, ranked from the hardest to easiest.


25. Salt Lake City, Utah

Checubus/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US56,776

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,674

Annual savings potential: $US6,271

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US25,252.56

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 25%


24. Hartford, Connecticut

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US59,192

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,158

Annual savings potential: $US6,913

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US26,139.36

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 26%


23. Charlotte, North Carolina

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US46,700

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,045

Annual savings potential: $US5,538

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US20,580.96

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 27%


22. Houston, Texas

IrinaK/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US54,271

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,142

Annual savings potential: $US6,774

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US23,748.48

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 29%


21. Dallas, Texas

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US56,044

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,199

Annual savings potential: $US7,343

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US24,350.64

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 30%


20. Minneapolis, Minnesota

f11photo/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US57,979

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,259

Annual savings potential: $US8,247

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US24,865.80

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 33%


19. Jacksonville, Florida

pisaphotography/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US49,459

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,015

Annual savings potential: $US7,093

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US21,182.88

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 33%


18. Cleveland, Ohio

Median take-home pay: $US43,904

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US727

Annual savings potential: $US6,435

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US18,734.34

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 34%


17. San Antonio, Texas

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US49,144

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US963

Annual savings potential: $US7,225

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US20,959.32

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 34%


16. Richmond, Virginia

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US51,135

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,066

Annual savings potential: $US8,045

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US21,544.86

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 37%


15. Detroit, Michigan

Kemboslice/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US45,629

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US741

Annual savings potential: $US7,408

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US19,110.36

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 39%


14. Nashville, Tennessee

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US51,718

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,210

Annual savings potential: $US8,557

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US21,580.74

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 40%


13. Louisville, Kentucky

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US44,404

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US810

Annual savings potential: $US7,600

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US18,402.24

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 41%


12. Atlanta, Georgia

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US51,902

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,047

Annual savings potential: $US8,942

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US21,480

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 42%


11. Washington, DC

Checubus/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US78,893

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US2,152

Annual savings potential: $US13,636

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US32,628.72

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 42%


10. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Median take-home pay: $US44,192

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US715

Annual savings potential: $US7,787

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US18,202.62

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 43%


9. Raleigh, North Carolina

Sharkshock/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US58,318

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,267

Annual savings potential: $US10,675

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US23,821.50

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 45%


8. Indianapolis, Indiana

Checubus/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US45,911

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US803

Annual savings potential: $US8,789

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US18.561.06

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 47%


7. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US45,864

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US652

Annual savings potential: $US8,894

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US18,484.98

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 48%


6. Baltimore, Maryland

Tupungato/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US64,296

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US1,334

Annual savings potential: $US13,127

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US25,584.42

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 51%


5. St. Louis, Missouri

Steven Liveoak/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US49,193

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US827

Annual savings potential: $US10,054

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US19,569.54

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 51%


4. Columbus, Ohio

Checubus/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US50,940

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US919

Annual savings potential: $US10,431

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US20,254.68

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 52%


3. Memphis, Tennessee

f11photo/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US42,623

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US676

Annual savings potential: $US9,348

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US16,637.58

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 56%


2. Cincinnati, Ohio

Checubus/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US51,026

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US849

Annual savings potential: $US11,231

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US19,897.38

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 56%


1. Kansas City, Missouri

f11photo/Shutterstock

Median take-home pay: $US51,078

Mortgage payment plus interest: $US809

Annual savings potential: $US12,191

Six-month emergency-fund savings: $US19,443.42

Per cent funded after one year of saving: 63%

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