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40 Top Cities Where Your Paycheck Goes the Furthest

Mixmike / Getty Images
Mixmike / Getty Images

The average worker traditionally receives a paycheck every two weeks, and those two checks have to cover housing and utilities, plus everything that the worker eats, drinks and does for an entire month. Needless to say, that's a whole lot easier to pull off when paychecks are big and the regional cost of living, even if on the higher side, fits within your paycheck. Dozens of cities in the United States offer exactly that dynamic -- you just have to know where to look.

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To find the 40 cities where people can spread their paychecks the furthest, GOBankingRates identified the median household income in America's 100 largest cities, the biweekly paycheck amount, the biweekly cost of necessities (including groceries, healthcare, housing, transportation and utilities), and finally, how much is left over when those necessities are paid for. The study used data from sources including the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. Census Bureau and Sperling's Best Places, then ranked the results in ascending order with the final entry being the city where your paycheck will last the longest.

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With more and more Americans working from home, a much larger percentage of the workforce can take their work with them wherever they go. This list profiles the cities that might be worth considering for people looking to get the most mileage from each paycheck.

Page Light Studios / Getty Images
Page Light Studios / Getty Images

40. Chicago, Illinois

  • Population: 2,699,347

  • Median annual household income: $62,097

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,388

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,262

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,126

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

39. St. Petersburg, Florida

  • Population: 264,001

  • Median annual household income: $60,798

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,338

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,204

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,134

Maria_martinez / Shutterstock.com
Maria_martinez / Shutterstock.com

38. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

  • Population: 649,821

  • Median annual household income: $56,456

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,171

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,026

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,145

Wallace Weeks / Shutterstock.com
Wallace Weeks / Shutterstock.com

37. Kansas City, Missouri

  • Population: 491,158

  • Median annual household income: $56,179

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,161

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,013

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,148

Jennifer_Sharp / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Jennifer_Sharp / Getty Images/iStockphoto

36. Boise, Idaho

  • Population: 228,057

  • Median annual household income: $63,778

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,453

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,303

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,150

Nate Hovee / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Nate Hovee / Getty Images/iStockphoto

35. Atlanta, Georgia

  • Population: 497,642

  • Median annual household income: $64,179

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,468

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,317

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,151

arinahabich / Getty Images/iStockphoto
arinahabich / Getty Images/iStockphoto

34. Aurora, Colorado

  • Population: 379,434

  • Median annual household income: $67,723

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,605

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,452

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,152

Kyle Sprague / Shutterstock.com
Kyle Sprague / Shutterstock.com

33. Portland, Oregon

  • Population: 650,380

  • Median annual household income: $73,159

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,814

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,628

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,186

Henryk Sadura / Shutterstock.com
Henryk Sadura / Shutterstock.com

32. Lexington, Kentucky

  • Population: 322,200

  • Median annual household income: $58,954

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,267

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,069

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,198

Davel5957 / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Davel5957 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

31. Durham, North Carolina

  • Population: 276,341

  • Median annual household income: $61,962

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,383

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,180

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,203

Katherine Welles / Shutterstock.com
Katherine Welles / Shutterstock.com

30. Lincoln, Nebraska

  • Population: 286,388

  • Median annual household income: $60,063

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,310

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,107

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,204

Shutterstock.com
Shutterstock.com

29. Corpus Christi, Texas

  • Population: 326,332

  • Median annual household income: $57,387

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,207

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,000

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,207

Dorti / Shutterstock.com
Dorti / Shutterstock.com

28. Arlington, Texas

  • Population: 397,269

  • Median annual household income: $63,351

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,437

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,195

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,241

Rcolborn / Wikimedia Commons
Rcolborn / Wikimedia Commons

27. Garland, Texas

  • Population: 238,622

  • Median annual household income: $63,192

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,430

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,178

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,253

Checubus / Shutterstock.com
Checubus / Shutterstock.com

26. Minneapolis, Minnesota

  • Population: 424,536

  • Median annual household income: $66,068

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,541

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,286

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,255

Davel5957 / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Davel5957 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

25. Omaha, Nebraska

  • Population: 479,529

  • Median annual household income: $62,213

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,393

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,130

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,263

DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images
DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images

24. Bakersfield, California

  • Population: 379,879

  • Median annual household income: $65,687

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,526

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,253

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,273

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

23. Colorado Springs, Colorado

  • Population: 471,686

  • Median annual household income: $67,719

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,605

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,312

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,293

Kruck20 / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Kruck20 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

22. Charlotte, North Carolina

  • Population: 873,570

  • Median annual household income: $65,359

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,514

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,214

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,300

typhoonski / iStock.com
typhoonski / iStock.com

21. Fort Worth, Texas

  • Population: 892,221

  • Median annual household income: $64,567

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,483

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,180

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,304

Davel5957 / Shutterstock.com
Davel5957 / Shutterstock.com

20. Irving, Texas

  • Population: 240,475

  • Median annual household income: $66,567

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,560

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,207

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,353

Francey / Shutterstock.com
Francey / Shutterstock.com

19. Madison, Wisconsin

  • Population: 258,366

  • Median annual household income: $67,565

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,599

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,235

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,364

Shutterstock.com
Shutterstock.com

18. Chula Vista, California

  • Population: 268,779

  • Median annual household income: $86,132

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,313

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,923

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,389

Davel5957 / Getty Images
Davel5957 / Getty Images

17. Austin, Texas

  • Population: 965,872

  • Median annual household income: $75,752

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,914

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,517

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,397

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

16. Raleigh, North Carolina

  • Population: 469,698

  • Median annual household income: $69,720

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,682

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,281

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,400

James Mattil / Shutterstock.com
James Mattil / Shutterstock.com

15. Henderson, Nevada

  • Population: 309,955

  • Median annual household income: $75,430

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,901

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,465

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,436

RomanKhomlyak / Getty Images/iStockphoto
RomanKhomlyak / Getty Images/iStockphoto

14. Seattle, Washington

  • Population: 741,251

  • Median annual household income: $97,185

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,738

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $2,251

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,487

miralex / Getty Images
miralex / Getty Images

13. Washington, D.C.

  • Population: 701,974

  • Median annual household income: $90,842

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,494

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,992

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,502

Boogich / Getty Images
Boogich / Getty Images

12. Denver, Colorado

  • Population: 715,878

  • Median annual household income: $72,661

  • Biweekly paycheck: $2,795

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,251

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,544

GerardoBrucker / iStock.com
GerardoBrucker / iStock.com

11. San Jose, California

  • Population: 1,029,409

  • Median annual household income: $117,324

  • Biweekly paycheck: $4,512

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $2,967

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,545

MCCAIG / Getty Images
MCCAIG / Getty Images

10. Irvine, California

  • Population: 272,694

  • Median annual household income: $108,318

  • Biweekly paycheck: $4,166

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $2,577

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,590

Sherry V Smith / Shutterstock.com
Sherry V Smith / Shutterstock.com

9. Virginia Beach, Virginia

  • Population: 450,882

  • Median annual household income: $78,136

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,005

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,315

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,690

Rocky Grimes / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Rocky Grimes / Getty Images/iStockphoto

8. Anchorage, Alaska

  • Population: 292,090

  • Median annual household income: $84,813

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,262

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,532

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,730

JacobH / Getty Images/iStockphoto
JacobH / Getty Images/iStockphoto

7. Scottsdale, Arizona

  • Population: 254,995

  • Median annual household income: $91,042

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,502

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,739

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,762

JoMo333 / Shutterstock.com
JoMo333 / Shutterstock.com

6. Chesapeake, Virginia

  • Population: 242,647

  • Median annual household income: $81,261

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,125

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,325

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,801

DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images/iStockphoto
DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images/iStockphoto

5. Chandler, Arizona

  • Population: 257,076

  • Median annual household income: $85,796

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,300

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,421

  • Amount of paycheck left: $1,879

Gary Fink / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Gary Fink / Getty Images/iStockphoto

4. Plano, Texas

  • Population: 288,870

  • Median annual household income: $96,348

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,706

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,415

  • Amount of paycheck left: $2,291

Mike Liu / Getty Images
Mike Liu / Getty Images

3. Fremont, California

  • Population: 234,829

  • Median annual household income: $142,374

  • Biweekly paycheck: $5,476

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $3,173

  • Amount of paycheck left: $2,303

DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images/iStockphoto
DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images/iStockphoto

2. Gilbert, Arizona

  • Population: 248,349

  • Median annual household income: $99,154

  • Biweekly paycheck: $3,814

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $1,459

  • Amount of paycheck left: $2,354

Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

1. Arlington, Virginia

  • Population: 236,434

  • Median annual household income: $122,604

  • Biweekly paycheck: $4,716

  • Total biweekly cost of necessities: $2,236

  • Amount of paycheck left: $2,480

More From GOBankingRates

Jami Farkas contributed to the reporting for this article.

Methodology: To find the 40 cities where paychecks go the furthest, GOBankingRates looked at the Bureau of Labor Statistics' 2020 Consumer Expenditure Survey data to find how much the typical American consumer unit spends annually and biweekly on necessities (including groceries, health, housing, transportation, utilities and miscellaneous expenses). GOBankingRates then looked at the 100 largest cities in the U.S. by population according to the Census Bureau's 2020 American Community Survey and found Sperling's Best Places' cost-of-living index for each necessity category in every city. Multiplying each city's index scores by the national biweekly spending estimates in every category, GOBankingRates was able to calculate how much consumers in each city can expect to spend on necessities per pay period. Then, GOBankingRates found the median annual household income in each city from the 2020 ACS and created a biweekly paycheck estimate for workers in each city. Finally, GOBankingRates subtracted the total biweekly cost of necessities in each city from its median biweekly paycheck to find out where workers can expect to have the most money left over after bills every pay period. All data was collected on and up to date as of April 21, 2022.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: 40 Top Cities Where Your Paycheck Goes the Furthest