The Cost of Living in Iowa — 2018 Edition
Iowans pay differing amounts for the basic living essentials depending on where they live. A family living in Linn County and a family living in Clay County will face different housing costs, commuting times and health insurance premiums; child care costs will differ as well. This report details how much families throughout the state must earn in order to meet their basic needs and underscores the importance of public work support programs for many Iowans, who despite their work efforts, are not able to pay for the most basic living expenses. For a printable version of the full report, click here for Part 1 and here for Part 2.

Below, see how costs compare for families in your county and neighboring counties; click on any county for the data.

map Union Shelby Woodbury Ringgold Van Buren Wapello Scott Sioux Sac Tama Webster Warren Washington Wayne Wright Worth Winnebago Winneshiek Muscatine Mahaska Poweshiek Jasper Marion Monroe Lucas Page Montgomery Pottawattamie Mills Monona Marshall Story Humboldt Pocahontas Palo Alto O'Brien Plymouth Mitchell Hamilton Hardin Grundy Guthrie Franklin Madison Keokuk Louisa Iowa Lee Henry Fremont Ida Jones Linn Howard Kossuth Hancock Johnson Jackson Harrison Greene Jefferson Decatur Davis Emmet Floyd Delaware Dubuque Fayette Dallas Dickinson Des Moines Butler Buena Vista Boone Bremer Clayton Chickasaw Cerro Gordo Cass Crawford Calhoun Clay Cherokee Clarke Carroll Buchanan Black Hawk Benton Clinton Cedar Audubon appanoose Adair Adams Osceola Allamakee Lyon Taylor Polk
Our regional analysis provides a look at before-tax earnings needed and a family supporting hourly wage to provide a basic needs budget. Visit the links below to look at the needed wage in various regions of the state, and metropolitan areas:


Ames MSA: Story County
Black Hawk County
Cedar Rapids MSA: Linn, Benton and Jones counties
Central East region: Marshall, Tama, Benton, Poweshiek, and Iowa counties
Central North region: Humboldt, Wright, Franklin, Butler, Webster, Hamilton, Hardin and Grundy counties
Council Bluffs MSA: Pottawattamie, Harrison, and Mills counties
Davenport MSA: Scott County
Des Moines MSA: Polk, Dallas, Madison, Warren, and Guthrie counties
Dubuque MSA: Dubuque County
Dubuque PUMA: Dubuque, Jackson, Buchanan and Delaware counties
East region: Jones, Clinton, Cedar and Muscatine counties
East South Central region: Mahaska, Keokuk, Wapello, Jefferson, Davis, and Van Buren counties
Greater Des Moines: Polk County and eastern Dallas County (West Des Moines and Urbandale)
Iowa City MSA: Johnson and Washington counties
Johnson County
Linn County
North Central region: Kossuth, Winnebago, Worth, Mitchell, Hancock, Cerro Gordo, and Floyd counties
Northeast region: Howard, Winneshiek, Allamakee, Chickasaw, Bremer, Fayette and Clayton counties
Northwest region: Lyon, Osceola, Dickinson, Emmet, Sioux, O'Biren, Clay and Palo Alto counties
Polk County
Pottawattamie County
Sioux City MSA and PUMA: Woodbury and Plymouth counties
Southeast region: Louisa, Henry, Des Moines, and Lee counties
Southwest region (PUMA): Pottawattamie, Harrison, Mills, Shelby, Cass, Fremont, Page and Montgomery counties
Story-Boone PUMA: Story and Boone counties
Waterloo MSA: Black Hawk, Bremer, and Grundy counties
West Central region: Cherokee, Buena Vista, Pocahantas, Ida, Sac, Calhoun, Crawford, Carroll, and Greene counties
West South Central region: Audubon, Guthrie, Adair, Adams, Union, Clarke, Lucas, Monroe, Taylor, Ringgold, Decatur, Wayne and Appanoose counties