Cost of Living in Wyoming

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Cost of Living in Wyoming

Wyoming is located in the United States’ Mountain West region. It is the tenth-largest state in terms of land area but the least populous in the country. The state has a stunning landscape with breathtaking mountains, lush wilderness, and rock formations. Thousands of tourists visit each year to take in the breathtaking scenery. When you come here, you will appreciate the beauty of nature as well as the low cost of living in Wyoming.

The state has a long and illustrious history. Its name is derived from a Native American phrase that means “on the vast plain.” The name Wyoming Valley was first used by the Lenape Native Americans. In 1869, Wyoming became the first state to grant women the right to vote. Are you thinking about relocating to Wyoming? Wyoming is one of the most beautiful places to live (and visit) in the United States, thanks to its wide-open spaces and stunning scenery, as well as its numerous outdoor activities and popular parks.

In this article, we’ll discuss what does it costs to live in Wyoming.

Wyoming Real Estate Prices

Wyoming has housing costs that are significantly lower than the national average and homeownership rates that are higher than the national average. Wyoming real estate is reasonably priced, and it appreciates quickly. Wyoming’s median home value is $251,970, and the vast majority of residents own their homes.

As the population grows, so do real estate prices, which have increased by 33% between 2005 and 2015. In Wyoming, only 26.7 percent of residents rent rather than own, owing to the low cost of housing.

As a Wyoming resident, you can expect to pay $1,428 per month in homeownership costs. Mortgage payments account for approximately $1,000 of the total ownership costs, with the remainder spent on bills and repairs. Wyoming housing costs are quite reasonable when compared to the national average of $1,558 monthly ownership costs.

Location Median Home Value Homeownership Rate
Wyoming $140,200 73.3%
Cheyenne, Wyoming $200,200 65.6%
Jackson, Wyoming $655,300 37.1%
United States $284,600 67.9%

Jackson is one of Wyoming’s most expensive cities, with a median home value of $655,300. The homeownership rate in Jackson, Wyoming is only 37.1 percent due to high housing costs. In Wyoming, in addition to down payments and monthly ownership costs, homeowners must budget for yearly property tax payments.

Let’s look at median home prices and the percentage of homes that fall within that range.

Median Home Prices in Wyoming
Home Prices Percentage of Homes
> $1,166,854 2.6%
$875,043 – $1,166,854 1.6%
$583,282 – $875,042 4.3%
$466,547 – $583,281 5.1%
$350,101 – $466,546 11.3%
$233,333 – $350,100 27.9%
$116,394 – $233,322 31.4%
$58,181 – $116,393 6.2%
$0 – $58,180 9.7%

On the other hand, there are some more expensive cities in Wyoming. The most expensive places to live are also determined by the median home price and median income.

If you decide to buy a home in Wyoming, consider the city in which you want to live. There are several affordable cities in the state. The ten most affordable cities in Wyoming are determined by the median home price and median income.

The 10 Most Affordable Cities in Wyoming
City Median Home Price Median Income
Worland $140,200 $52,714
Lyman $198,800 $86,667
Greybull $111,600 $48,438
Rawlins $162,800 $64,674
Marbleton $185,100 $72,188
Newcastle $122,400 $55,256
Saratoga $201,100 $78,750
Kemmerer $165,500 $62,083
Wright $179,500 $75,957
Thermopolis $142,600 $52,560

Wyoming Property Tax Rate

Property taxes are an additional cost of owning a home wherever you live, and fortunately, they are low in Wyoming. Wyoming’s average effective property tax rate is 0.61 percent, but it can be as low as 0.49 percent. The average property tax payment varies greatly depending on the county’s median home value and property tax rates.

Wyoming Counties Property Tax Rate Average Property Tax Payment
Washakie County 0.66% $1,099
Converse County 0.61% $1,200
Teton County 0.49% $3,645
Laramie County 0.62% $1,262
Platte County 0.56% $958
Hot Springs County 0.61% $899
Sweetwater 0.60% $1,201

Property tax exemptions are available in Wyoming for homeowners, but there are some restrictions. If your home is worth more than $237,000, you will not be eligible for any exemptions. However, if it is less than that amount and you have lived in the home for three years, you may be eligible for property tax exemptions.

Property tax exemptions in Wyoming are not particularly generous, with the average resident saving only $278 per year. However, if you are over the age of 65 and own your home as your primary residence, you may be eligible for exemptions. If you’ve been a Wyoming resident for three years, you can also qualify for $3,000 in property tax exemptions.

Wyoming Rental Prices

Renting a home in Wyoming can sometimes be more cost-effective than purchasing one. Renting a house has lower initial costs and usually includes maintenance. This relieves you of the responsibility and expense of owning a home, potentially leaving you with more disposable income.

Average Rent by Bedroom Size in Wyoming Compared to the United States
Bedroom Size Wyoming Cost Per Month United States Cost Per Month
Studio $612 $821
One-Bedroom $674 $930
Two-Bedroom $852 $1,148
Three-Bedroom $1,165 $1,537
Four-Bedroom $1,424 $1,791

The rising popularity of the energy industry, on the other hand, creates hot rental markets in certain areas. This makes it difficult to find a vacancy and results in high rental prices.

Median Rent Per Month by City in Wyoming
City Median Rent Per Month
Jackson $1,382
Star Valley Ranch $1,225
Wright $1,164
Ranchester $1,090
Marbleton $1,083
Pinedale $1,072
Gillette $992
Rock Springs $969
Buffalo $960
Saratoga $958

Utilities in Wyoming Are Expensive

Utility bills, whether you are a renter or a homeowner, contribute to the cost of living. Wyoming’s average utility bills vary by city, and energy consumption determines your total monthly cost. Basic utilities such as electric, gas, and water bills are used to calculate average utility costs.

Wyoming Cities Average Monthly Utilities
Cheyenne $148 Per Month
Jackson $83 Per Month
Sinclair $166 Per Month
Casper $165 Per Month
Laramie $125 Per Month

You won’t find much lower utility bills than in Jackson, Wyoming, where the average is $83 per month. Internet bills are also low in Jackson, Wyoming, typically costing between $40 and $60 per month. Cable plans in Jackson and the rest of Wyoming range in price from $25 to $60 per month, depending on the provider.

Wyoming’s statewide average electric bill is $85 per month, which is $22 less than the national average. Water bills in Wyoming can cost up to $50 or more per month, depending on usage. Utilities are more expensive for homeowners and can cost up to $415 per month for a family home.

Wyoming Income Tax Rates

Tax rates are a component of the cost of living that can sometimes surprise you with unexpected expenses. Knowing your state, city, and county tax rates can assist you in creating and adhering to a workable living budget. Wyoming is no exception, and thankfully, the state’s tax rates are so low that it has earned a reputation for them.

In Wyoming, there is no state income tax, and this includes retirement income. Not only that, but Wyoming has the lowest sales tax in the country. Wyoming has the lowest tax rates in the country, which is reason enough to live there.

Wyoming Sales Tax Rate

Wyoming’s average sales tax rate is 4%, which is generous by any state’s standards. Wyoming’s sales taxes are never higher than 6% in 61 of the state’s 99 municipalities. Some goods and services, such as gasoline and tobacco, are taxed separately in Wyoming.

When you go to the gas pump, keep in mind that Wyoming has a $0.23 per gallon gasoline tax. Tobacco sales in Wyoming are taxed at $0.60 per package of cigarettes and other tobacco products. Except for the 4 percent -6 percent sales tax rate that applies throughout the state, alcohol sales are not subject to any taxes.

Wyoming has the third-lowest sales tax in the country, aside from the five states that have none. Due to consistent tax rates, it is easier to estimate how much your spending will cost in Wyoming. Wyoming has no sales tax on groceries and prescription drugs, which is a lifesaver.

Other Wyoming Taxes

In addition to the 4% sales tax, Wyoming residents pay taxes on other items such as gas, alcohol, and cigarettes. There is no additional tax on groceries, including candy and soda.

Additional Taxes in Wyoming
Goods Additional Tax
Gas $0.24 per gallon
Beer $0.02 per gallon
Wine $0.28 per gallon
Spirits $0.95 per gallon
Cigarettes $0.60 per 20-pack

Wyoming Food Prices

Wyoming ranks 99.2 on the cost of living index for grocery costs, while the national average is 100. In general, your food budget should be 11% of your annual income, with 6% for groceries and 5% for dining out. Wyoming’s median income is $61,584, so your food budget should be around $6,800 per year.

Dining Out Food Costs Comparison of Casper and Jackson, Wyoming
Items Casper, Wyoming Jackson, Wyoming
Inexpensive Restaurant Meal $5.00 $9.50
Beer $3.00 per pint $4.00 per pint
Cappuccino $2.33 $5.57
Fast Food Meal Combo $3.50 $8.90

The table below shows sample costs based on where you live in Wyoming. In this example, you can compare food costs in Casper, a more affordable city, and Jackson, a more expensive city.

Grocery Food Costs Comparison of Casper and Jackson, Wyoming
Items Casper, Wyoming Jackson, Wyoming
Milk $1.99 per gallon $2.58 per gallon
Loaf of Bread $1.00 $2.83
Eggs $1.50 $2.50
Cheese $2.22 per pound $7.33 per pound

Wyoming School Fees

In Wyoming, parents have a total of 1,320 schools to choose from. Wyoming has 62 school districts, 363 schools, and a total enrollment of 94,578 students. The state spends an average of $20,380 per student, which is significantly higher than the national average of $12,201. This could explain why Wyoming has the highest rate of high school graduation in the country, with 92 percent of residents completing high school.

Fortunately, you don’t have to spend a fortune to provide your children with an excellent education in Wyoming. Wyoming’s public education system is highly regarded, and it is the most cost-effective schooling option.

Wyoming Education Average Cost of Tuition
Average Private Tuition $8,689 Per Year
Private Elementary Tuition $3,644 Per Year
Private High School Tuition $15,417 Per Year
University of Wyoming $5,581 (Residents) $18,151 (Non-Residents)
Sheridan College $4,170 (Residents) $10,110 (Non-Residents)

Wyoming also has a number of private school options. Wyoming’s average private school tuition is around $8,689 per year.

Average Private School Tuition Costs by Grade Level
Grade Level Average Tuition Costs Per Year
Pre-School $4,050
Elementary School $3,644
High School $15,417

Some private schools may charge higher tuition than others. This is usually determined by the city in which you live. Private schools in less expensive cities, such as Casper, are typically less expensive than private schools in more expensive cities, such as Jackson.

Cost of Private School Tuition by School
School Tuition Cost Grade Level City
Green River Christian Academy $3,000 K – 6 Green River, WY
Martin Luther Grammar School $3,200 K – 8 Sheridan, WY
Jackson Hole Christian Academy $3,750 K – 12 Jackson, WY
Mount Hope Lutheran School $4,050 NS – 8 Casper, WY
Trinity Lutheran School $4,325 PK – 8 Riverton, WY
Jackson Hole Classical Academy $17,400 K – 11 Jackson, WY
Jackson Hole Community School $25,100 9 – 12 Jackson, WY

Wyoming also has several prestigious colleges, including the University of Wyoming and Sheridan College. Tuition at the University of Wyoming is only $5,581 per year for state residents and $18,151 for out-of-state students. Sheridan College is more affordable for both in-state and out-of-state students, with annual tuition of $4,170 and $10,110, respectively.

Transportation Costs in Wyoming

The state of Wyoming currently has over 421,000 licensed drivers. Fortunately, driving costs in Wyoming are quite low, with the average cost of gasoline being $2.76 per gallon. This is somewhat high, but the low $0.23 per gallon gasoline tax more than compensates for the cost of the gas itself.

Wyoming has a large number of commuters who spend an average of 17 minutes in the car on their way to work. The average American driver uses 656 gallons of gas per year, which can cost up to $1,810 in Wyoming. Gasoline isn’t the only expense of owning a car in Wyoming; car insurance is also required.

Wyoming car insurance premiums average $1,338 per year, but there are many factors to consider. Car insurance premiums vary according to personal driving history, gender, and the number of licensed drivers in your city. Car insurance is typically 6% less expensive than the national average.

Wyoming Drivers Age Average Car Insurance Premiums
16-19 Years Old $3,314-$5,573
20-40 Years Old $1,329-$1,922
30-50 Years Old $1,294-$1,329
50-60 Years Old $1,155-$1,557
60-70 Years Old $1,157-$1,352

Wyoming Activity Fees

Wyoming is a haven for those who enjoy the great outdoors. Hiking, skiing, snowboarding, hunting, and other activities are available. If you plan your relocation to Wyoming around these activities, you should consider the costs.

Wyoming Hiking Costs

If you enjoy hiking, there are several one-day and two-day guided hiking tours available. These tours range in price from $150 for a guided hike with lunch to $3,500 for a two-day Yellowstone guided tour. Don’t forget your hiking equipment, which can range from $1,000 to $5,000.

Guided Rifle Hunt Prices
Hunt Type Hunt Length Price Per Person
Combination Hunt Four Days $4,600 – $10,500
Elk Hunt Four Days $2,850 – $8,300
Moose Hunt Eight Days $8,900
Antelope Hunt Three Days $2,750
Deer Hunt Three Days $3,950 – $5,700

If you prefer archery hunting to rifle hunting, these can be more difficult and expensive.

Guided Archery Hunt Prices
Hunt Type Hunt Length Price Per Person
Elk Hunt Six Days $5,900 – $8,300
Moose Hunt Eight Days $8,900
Deer Hunt Five Days $4,200 – $5,700
Antelope Hunt Four Days $2,750

Is Wyoming Secure?

Wyoming is one of the safest states in the country, but crime does occur, and the majority of it is property crime. Wyoming residents face a violent crime rate of one in 471 and a property crime rate of one in 56. In Wyoming, the majority of violent crimes are physical assaults, and the majority of property crimes are thefts and burglaries.

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