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The most expensive towns in the U.S. – and what it costs to live there

Here’s how much you need to make to live in the top 10 priciest ZIP codes

Everyone knows that living in Beverly Hills, California, or Greenwich, Connecticut, doesn’t come cheap. But how much, exactly, does it take to live there? A recent report by personal finance site GOBankingRates spells it out, naming the most expensive ZIP codes in each state and determining what it costs to comfortably live there.

Considering the cost of an average mortgage in the area, plus healthcare costs and daily living expenses like groceries, utilities and transportation, the report estimates the annual income required to live in each town – and the results are staggering.

The estimates are based on the “50-30-20 rule,” which dictates that 50% of a person’s income will be spent on necessities, 30% will be left for discretionary spending and the remaining 20% will be reserved for savings.

Based on these factors, here are the top 10 most expensive cities and the annual salary required to live there.

  1. Sagaponack, New York: $853,738

Located near the eastern tip of Long Island in the town of Southampton, Sagaponack is the perfect weekend getaway for New York City’s wealthy elite. The median home price was $5.5 million in 2016 and $2.8 million in 2017, according to Property Shark, making it one the most expensive places to live in the U.S.

  1. Beverly Hills, California: $692,388

Everyone knows that life in 90210 comes with a hefty price tag. With constant sunshine and close proximity to the Hollywood scene, Beverly Hills ranks No. 2 for the most expensive place to live.

  1. Alpine, New Jersey: $499,244

This private little enclave with less than 3,000 residents is located across the Hudson River and is just nine miles outside of Manhattan, making it a convenient place to quietly nest for celebs and business titans alike.

  1. Fisher Island, Florida: $452,630

Located three miles south of Miami Beach, the ultra-exclusive Fisher Island is home to just 700 families with homes nestled between the shore and a golf course.

  1. Aspen, Colorado: $380,590

Situated at the heart of the White River National Forrest and featuring breathtaking mountain views, the median home value for this popular vacation destination is $1.4 million.

  1. Sea Island, Georgia: $354,366

This five-mile island off the coast of Georgia has just 400 full-time residents and was a playground for the uber wealthy in the 1920s. Its massive oak trees and five-star hotels continue to attract the vacationing elite.

  1. Greenwich, Connecticut: $343,126

Situated on the border of Connecticut and New York, Greenwich is an ideal destination for the high-flying businessman. In fact, it’s home to 12 of the world’s richest billionaires.

  1. Nantucket, Massachusetts: $331,558

Located 30 miles off the coast of Cape Cod, Nantucket has long been a popular summer destination for wealthy vacationers. With its striking water views and seaside charm, Nantucket boasts a median home price of $1.85 million.

  1. Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina: $296,354

A suburb of Charleston located just east of the city, this 2.4 square mile-island is known for its pristine beaches and impressive coastal mansions.

  1. Honolulu, Hawaii: $288,004

Honolulu wins the prize for the highest cost of living, as most daily necessities are two-thirds more expensive on the island than the rest of the country, making life on the island quite pricey. 

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