Housing and Groceries Highlight Eau Claire's Low Cost of Living in 2018


Posted: February 1, 2019

EAU CLAIRE, WI – According to a report released by the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER), Eau Claire had an annual cost of living index of 93.5 in 2018. Published since 1968, the C2ER Cost of Living Index has been the most consistent and trusted source of city-to-city cost comparisons available. The national average equals 100 and each participant’s index is a percentage of the average for all places. The lower the cost of living index, the cheaper goods and services are in that area.

Prices of consumer goods and services are collected by Eau Claire’s Economic Development Division three times a year in order to measure regional differences. The composite index is based on the prices of standardized goods and services in six weighted categories – housing, utilities, grocery items, transportation, health care, and miscellaneous goods and services. After the end of the year, averages are released based on the year’s first three quarters of data.  

Eau Claire’s composite index of 93.5 ranks third lowest among participating Wisconsin urban areas and declined from 95.1 in 2017. Eau Claire’s cost of housing remained the most affordable category relative to other cities, with a housing index of 76.4 that ranked the lowest of the six participating Wisconsin urban areas and represented a decline from 79.2 in 2017. Eau Claire’s grocery cost index of 92.6 also ranks below the national average.

The full report is available upon request. 

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