These Are The 10 Most Expensive Cities In Wisconsin To Raise A Family

Chris Kolmar
by Chris Kolmar
Rankings - 3 years ago
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There are some parts of the country where your dollar goes further. For example, a steak dinner in Madison costs less than a steak dinner in San Francisco.

And the cost of living can have a big impact on how far your hard earned salary stretches for you and your family. So if you have a choice in where you can live for your job, the cost of living can play a big part.

That’s where Zippia comes in; to show you the places in Wisconsin that would eat up a big part of your paycheck on expenses — the San Franciscos of the world if you will. Where housing is expensive and day care will put you back a pretty penny.

These are the cities in Wisconsin where the cost of living is actually higher than the national average because, for the most part, Wisconsin isn’t all that expensive.

After we crunched all the numbers, we were left with this set of the most expensive places to raise a family in the Badger State:

  1. Waunakee
  2. Mequon
  3. Elm Grove
  4. Delafield
  5. Cottage Grove
  6. Whitefish Bay
  7. Middleton
  8. Brookfield
  9. Fox Point
  10. Fitchburg

Read on to see how we determined the places that try to keep up with the Joneses a little too much.

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How we determined the least affordable places to live in the Badger State

There are basic necessities that you have to buy no matter where in the country you live. Those things include:

  • Housing
  • Food
  • Gas
  • Health Insurance
  • Utilities
  • Transportation

You can then compare the cost of these things in each of the places in Wisconsin to figure out which is the most expensive.

What you are left with is a “Cost of Living Index” that normalizes to 100 for an average place in the United States. And lucky for us, AreaVibes has such an index for us.

So we used that cost of living index in order to rank the largest 143 places in Wisconsin.

And just so you can better understand how the cost of living index works, 100 is the average cost of a place in the United States. A score of 90 means that the place cost 10% less than average. A score of 120 means it’s 20% more expensive.

San Francisco has a score of 243 meaning it’s almost 2.5 times as expensive as the average place in the country.

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1. Waunakee

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 12,142
Housing: 151

2. Mequon

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 23,164
Housing: 182

3. Elm Grove

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 5,958
Housing: 179

4. Delafield

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 7,060
Housing: 169

5. Cottage Grove

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 6,174
Housing: 135

6. Whitefish Bay

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Flickr

Population: 14,063
Housing: 159

7. Middleton

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 17,589
Housing: 133

8. Brookfield

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 38,015
Housing: 152

9. Fox Point

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 6,703
Housing: 152

10. Fitchburg

Most Expensive Wisconsin

Source: fitchburgoptimists

Population: 25,222
Housing: 130