Bad News: Arizona is Paying Much More than Average for These 5 Things
Inflation Steals the Simple Pleasures in Arizona
A friend of mine posted something on Facebook this morning. It got me thinking about the way our dollar is shrinking so much, that even our kids have to miss out on some of life's simple pleasures.
My friend took her grandkids to McDonald's for an ice cream cone last night. Here's an excerpt from her social media post:
"We can't do much extra these days. One small tradition we had is now out of the question.
McDonald's no longer has $.99 ice cream cones. We used to get 3 cones for $3.23. Tonight that same treat cost us $2.59 for each cone, for a total of $7.77 for 3 small cones! Ridiculous!"
That's a pretty big jump in price for such a small treat. It's a 162% leap! Prices are suddenly skyrocketing, while experts stand by and tell us there's nothing to worry about. In Arizona, we're not buying what they're selling.
The evidence is everywhere: prices are soaring and it's hitting us hard.
In Arizona, Inflation is Even Higher than the National Average
Egg prices went crazy earlier in the year. Gas prices are on the rise again. Groceries are through the roof. And speaking of roof, housing prices have gone crazy, too.
Inflation is having a noticeable impact on Arizona families across the state. According to AZ Central, nearly every consumer item has seen a price jump over the course of this year.
National vs. Local Inflation Rates
The national inflation rate just hit 8.5% in March. This is the highest rate of inflation in 41 years.
Bad News for Arizona: it's hitting Arizona families even harder than most of the nation.
The rate of inflation in the Phoenix metro area is currently around 10.9%. The spike in housing costs is largely responsible for that rate.
A Rise in Income is Not Keeping Pace with Inflation for Arizona
While personal incomes in Arizona have risen lately, they haven't kept pace with inflation. The rate of inflation is stretching our paychecks, making it increasingly difficult to make ends meet.
Cost-of-living expenses have lept an average of $350 a month. But in Arizona, the higher rate of inflation has added more than $500 to monthly household costs.
Almost 40% of Arizonans struggle to afford food and nearly 20% can't afford to pay their bills on time.
The Top 5 Things We're Paying the Most for in Arizona:
- Housing: The average home now costs around $436,600. The national median home cost is around $406,700. In July of last year, Arizona homes cost around $311,000. The average rent is around $1,619.
- Utilities: Arizona is paying an average of $408 per month in utilities.
- Health Care: Arizona is paying about $6,900 in health care costs annually.
- Food and Beverages: An Arizona family of four pays around $980 per month for groceries. And that doesn't include eating out!
- Gasoline: According to AAA, the average price for a gallon of gas is currently around $4.36 a gallon. If you're filling up once a week, you're likely spending around $315 or more a month, just in fuel costs.