The idea of 'living comfortably' is such a subjective thing. Income that is comfortable for one person might seem like poverty to another. However, there is a national average which is being used to compare Illinois towns and cities to decide which ones are the most comfortable in the state.

I saw AOL share this interesting breakdown of 10 Illinois cities and towns where you can live the most comfortably (or not). It's based on data from a new Rent Cafe study which says Illinois overall is 8% below the national average for cost of living. Statewide, the study claims that housing is 22% lower than the rest of America which doesn't sound right to me. It might be correct, but it sure doesn't feel that way.

The individual breakdown of Illinois places is interesting though with Chicago coming in at 14% above the national average while these Illinois towns are well below what the cost of living is in other parts of America:

  • Bloomington - 2%
  • Joliet - 3%
  • Quincy - 4%
  • Carbondale - 8%
  • Galesburg - 9%
  • Champaign - 10%
  • Springfield - 10%
  • Peoria - 12%
  • Kankakee - 12%
  • Rockford - 14%
  • Danville - 21%

Another interesting takeaway from this Illinois study is transportation costs tend to be higher in the Land of Lincoln compared to the rest of the US while utility costs tend to be about 10% lower. Interesting, but another statistic that doesn't sound right to me and probably a few others that actually live and/or have rented here.

There's lots of other cost of living math in the full survey from Rent Cafe if you're interested.

Inside an Abandoned $232 Million Dollar Illinois Insurance Place

Gallery Credit: decayingmidwest via YouTube