How much it costs to live in the best US cities for young people

Seattle washingtonShutterstockSeattle ranks as the 6th best big city for young professionals.

Young professionals flock to the big lights, but city life doesn’t come cheap.

A single person living in San Francisco, for instance, should plan on spending about $US3,632 a month.

That estimate comes from the Economic Policy Institute‘s (EPI) 2015 Family Budget Calculator, which measures the annual cost of necessities for one adult to live a secure, yet modest, lifestyle by estimating the costs of housing, food, transportation, health care, other necessities, and taxes. The estimate does not include savings or discretionary spending.

(Read the EPI’s full methodology for the budget calculator.)

Here, we’ve highlighted the cost of living for a single person (one adult, zero children) in the ten best big cities for young professionals, determined in a report by the American Institute for Economic Research.

Scroll down to see the cities, ranked in order of suitability for young people, and why they’re great for 20-somethings.

10. Raleigh, North Carolina

Grant Halverson/Getty
Raleigh is home to NC State University, and Chapel Hill is right down the road.

Home to NC State University, and surrounded by strong schools such as Duke, Wake Forest, and UNC Chapel Hill, Raleigh is an excellent option for young people.

In 2011, BloombergBusiness ranked Raleigh the best place to live in America due to its ample green space and 'thriving social scene.'

Estimated cost of annual necessities: $US30,209

Estimated cost of monthly necessities: $US2,517

7. Denver, Colorado

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A perk of Denver: access to the Rocky Mountains.

Millennials (those born between 1981 and 1997) now make up the largest population group in metro Denver, a region that experienced 'robust job growth' in 2014, according to the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation.

Estimated cost of annual necessities: $US28,829

Estimated cost of monthly necessities: $US2,402

6. Seattle, Washington

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The Seattle skyline with Mount Rainier in the background.

Seattle residents enjoy a strong social scene with many bars and restaurants to choose from. It has also been called the new 'center of the tech boom,' with companies like Amazon and Microsoft bringing many jobs to the area.

Estimated cost of annual necessities: $US32,122

Estimated cost of monthly necessities: $US2,677

5. New York City, New York

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The Flatiron building in Manhattan.

While pricey, cost of living in New York City

is offset by its top public transportation system, diverse population, and electric atmosphere. There's also plenty you can do without spending a fortune, from live music and street food to public art installations.

Estimated cost of annual necessities: $US43,519

Estimated cost of monthly necessities: $US3,627

4. San Jose, California

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The streets of San Jose.

San Jose residents enjoy some of the most generous paychecks in the country, according to Vocativ's Livability Index, thanks in part to the abundance of tech jobs in Silicon Valley.

Estimated cost of annual necessities: $US41,386

Estimated cost of monthly necessities: $US3,449

3. Boston, Massachusetts

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Boston's Fenway Park, home to the Red Sox.

With MIT, Harvard, and Tufts all in the vicinity, Boston is a mecca for educated millennials. It also offers a vibrant social scene, several professional sports teams, and a wealth of cultural and historical attractions.

Estimated cost of annual necessities: $US39,358

Estimated cost of monthly necessities: $US3,280

2. San Francisco, California

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San Francisco.

While the cost of living in San Francisco is among the highest in the nation, it has a booming technology industry and offers high earnings for young professionals. Additionally, the climate and views are hard to beat.

Estimated cost of annual necessities: $US43,581

Estimated cost of monthly necessities: $US3,632

1. Washington, DC

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Cherry blossoms near the Capitol.

The top-ranked major city offers an abundance of government, professional, and technical jobs, in addition to a vibrant downtown area with cultural and social opportunities.

Estimated cost of annual necessities: $US42,119

Estimated cost of monthly necessities: $US3,510

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