Cost of Living in Portland, Oregon

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Cost of Living in Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon, is home to 662,549 people. Portland is Oregon’s largest city, accounting for nearly 60% of the state’s population. The city has developed a reputation as a refuge for liberal counterculture because of its resident mix of hipsters and outdoor adventurists. In recent years, the city’s economy has become increasingly reliant on the technology sector.

Manufacturing, healthcare, and athletic and outdoor wear are some of Portland’s other major businesses. Nike, Columbia Sportswear, and Adidas all have headquarters in the metro region, making it the city with the highest concentration of such businesses in the country.

In and around Portland, there’s much to do, from sampling international cuisine at the city’s famed “food cart pods” (marked places for food trucks) to browsing the aisles of Powell’s Books, the world’s biggest independent bookstore. You may easily drive from Portland to surrounding gorgeous regions such as Mt. Hood National Forest and the rocky Oregon coast.

Is It Expensive to Live in Portland, Oregon?

Portland’s cost of living is comparable to national averages when compared to other western cities. If you want to save money, you might consider living in the city. Rents and electricity expenses, on the other hand, are much higher than the national average. Transportation costs are also slightly higher than the national average. While the cost of living in Portland is higher than in other cities, it is still within reach for most people.

Renting a property in Portland is roughly twice as expensive as buying one. A three-bedroom rental in Portland costs between $2500 and $2700 per month, but moving outside of the city can save you hundreds of dollars every month.
Portland’s utility costs are around 70 cents higher than the national average. Healthcare is more expensive, but utilities are less expensive than the national average.

Portland’s utility costs are greater than the national average. In Portland, the cost of gas, electricity, and internet is around $170 per month. Water and sewer rates are also projected to climb. Portland’s average cost of living is roughly 30 percent more than the national average. Housing is the only expense that is less than the national average. This means that if you want to buy a house, you should plan on spending more money.

Why Portland Has a High Cost of living?

While the cost of living in Portland is high, there are ways to cut costs. Consider utilizing a bargain realtor who gives a big buyer rebate if you’re planning to buy a home in the city. You may also save money on your utilities, with the average electric bill being $94 against $107 nationally. In Portland, you’ll find a wide range of job opportunities as well as affordable housing.

While housing is less expensive in Portland than the national average, utilities are more expensive. Your necessary services, such as water and sewer, should cost more than $170 per month. Nonetheless, Portland’s cost of living is much higher than the national average, and your quality of life will determine your cost of living. This implies you should expect a higher cost of living in Portland, but bear in mind that it isn’t the only issue to consider.

Portland’s cost of living is greater than the national average. Even so, you’ll have to pay extra for accommodation and groceries. Utilities are less expensive than the national average. This could be attributed to the city’s warm climate, which can help save money on electricity. If you’re considering relocating to Portland, it’s important to have a firm grasp of the city’s prices.

Although rent in Portland is pricier than the national average, it is well worth the investment. There are many jobs in the city, and most locals think that the cost of living is reasonable. The median annual household income is $71,005. You can use the rent calculator to see if the cost of living in Portland is within your means. Although it is not the most affordable city in the world, inhabitants are satisfied with the quality of life and amenities available.

Is Portland, Oregon, an Affordable Place to Live?

A one-bedroom apartment in Portland costs $1866 a month, while a two-bedroom unit costs $2573. In Portland, a one-bedroom apartment is frequently less expensive than a two-bedroom in trendy areas. In Portland, the average rent is $36,883, with a two-bedroom apartment costing $2681.

The average rent in Portland for a one-bedroom apartment is roughly $1,734 per month due to high property prices. This is much more than the national average, and Portland’s housing median rent is slightly higher than the national average. In comparison to the statewide average, even tiny apartments are reasonably priced. If you want to live in a more modest residence, you’ll need to save aside more than $750 every month.

Portland scored 77.74 out of 100 on Numbeo’s cost of living index in March 2021, which takes into account the cost of consumer goods such as groceries, restaurants, transportation, and utilities. (With a score of 100, New York City is the index’s most expensive city benchmark.) When rent is factored in, Portland receives a score of 64.71, indicating that the overall cost of living is higher than big inland cities such as Denver and Austin but substantially lower than coastal cities and nearby tech centers such as San Francisco and Seattle. Portland’s cost of living is 29 percent higher than the national average, according to Still, depending on how much you spend on items like housing and transportation, this can vary significantly.

What Are Housing and Renting Prices in Portland, Oregon?


Nearly half of the people who live in Portland rent their homes. The average rent for an apartment in January 2021 was $1,495 (compared to a national average of $1,465).

The Pearl District, Old Town Portland-Chinatown, and Nob Hill-Northwest District are the most costly neighborhoods for renters in Portland, with average monthly rents ranging from $1,745 to $1,792.

Monthly rents in prominent districts including Downtown Portland, Goose Hollow, and Mount Tabor range from $1,439 to $1,557 on average. Cully, where tenants pay an average of $864 per month, and Parkrose, Sumner, and Woodland Park, whose median asking rates are under $1,030 per month—far below the citywide average—are among Portland’s most affordable areas.

Renters in other major West Coast cities, such as Los Angeles and San Francisco, require twice the amount of money as a typical Portland renter. Consider the additional cost of sunlight: Californians are used to warmer, drier weather than their Pacific Northwest counterparts. There are an estimated 164 rainy days each year in Portland, which ranks third on Statista’s list of cities with the wettest days in the country.

Even if these figures appear to be excessive, living in Portland does not have to be prohibitively expensive. When you share a room with a roommate, you can save a lot of money compared to living alone.

Home Purchase

From a median transaction price of $263,000 in March 2011 to $501,224 in March 2021, home prices in Portland have climbed approximately 53% in the last decade. Despite the fact that Portland property costs are over twice the national median of $269,039, they are still less than the average home value in certain adjacent Pacific Northwest cities.

The average property valuation in Seattle, just under three hours north of Portland, is roughly $816,718. (as of March 2021). Bend, Oregon, which borders the Willamette National Forest to the south of Portland, has had a 14.5 percent increase in median property values in the last year, with asking prices about $562,588—more than $60,000 more than Portland’s average housing cost.

In the larger Portland area, more cheap real estate can be found in surrounding cities. The median property price in Beaverton, Oregon, and Vancouver, Washington, both less than a 20-minute drive from downtown Portland, is up to $99,000 less than the Portland median.

Are Food and Utilities Cheap in Portland?


For basic electricity, heat, gas, and garbage services, the average monthly utility payment in Portland is roughly $188. Adding internet costs an extra $66 per month on average. This is significantly more than what residents of San Francisco and New York pay in monthly utilities, but it is still less than what Seattle residents pay on average. Overall, Portland’s utility costs are around $24 more than the national average.


Portland has more restaurants, pubs, and coffee shops than any other city on the planet, as well as 70 breweries. Dining out is an expense you’ll want to factor into your cost of living calculation because the city is known for its numerous culinary offerings.

On average, a one-person meal at a low-cost restaurant in Portland will cost roughly $18, and a three-course meal for two people at a mid-range restaurant will cost around $60. Similar dinners in Boston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco will cost far more.

The average monthly grocery bill in Portland is $372.35, which is more than the national average of $341.40. However, Oregon has no sales taxes throughout the state, making Portland prices appear to be a bargain when contrasted to Seattle’s 10.1 percent sales tax.

What Salary Do You Need to Live in Portland?

According to, the average annual pay in Portland is $69,000. Many of Portland’s top employers, however, are corporations like Nike and Intel, whose employees make an average of $94,000 to $98,000 per year, with the potential to earn considerably more based on seniority and job.

Portland’s minimum payment is $13.25, which is $1.25 higher than Oregon’s standard minimum wage and nearly double the national minimum wage of $7.25 as of July 2020. Despite this, Oregon’s income taxes are relatively high; for Portland residents, the tax rate starts at 5% and increases to nearly 10%, depending on how much you make.

By the Willamette River, Portland is divided into six geographical “quadrants” (which run south to north). Within each section, such as Northeast or Southwest Portland, the neighborhoods are readily walkable and bike-friendly. Nonetheless, the city is rather dispersed, and many inhabitants possess vehicles for commuting and outdoor adventures outside of the city.

However, having a car in Portland comes at a price: As of March 2021, the average price of a gallon of petrol in Portland was $3.15, according to GasBuddy. This is 28 cents more than the national average of $2.87. It’s also worth remembering that pumping your own gas is illegal in many regions of Oregon, including Portland.


Food is not taxed in Oregon. To sweeten the deal, we should point out that this is one of just five states without a statewide sales or use tax. In comparison to Seattle, Washington, where the sales tax is 10.1 percent, your chosen vacation is quite reasonable. Keep in mind, however, that you will still be required to pay personal income tax, which might be rather substantial (5 percent -9 percent rates).

The City of Roses is still significantly more affordable than many other popular US cities, despite not being among the most affordable destinations ever. New York City is 43% more expensive, while San Francisco is up to 105 percent more expensive. There are, of course, less expensive solutions.

You could be tempted to consider buying a house if you’re moving from an apartment to a house. Specifically, despite the high housing prices, more than half of the population own their homes. If you’re thinking about going this route, it’s a good idea to put some money aside first.

Does it appear that living here is financially feasible? After all, once you get a well-paying job, this nice apartment will not seem so pricey. Then you can concentrate on everything it has to offer: rich culture, fantastic outdoor activities, and open and welcoming people. Meeting new neighbors may seem odd at first, but as you have settled in, you’ll discover that it isn’t necessary.

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