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Moving? Online calculator shows what money you might lose (or gain)

Published: Tuesday, Jan. 8 2013 9:03 a.m. MST

A comparable calculator allows people to see price differences between cities. The user enters in the locations and his or her salary to see how a move might affect them financially.

www.money.cnn.com

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SALT LAKE CITY — The grass may seem greener on the other side, but your money may not be.

CNN Money created a comparable calculator to show how far a salary will go in different cities. It allows you to compare your current location with another city.

For example, if one was living in Rochester, NY, and made $50,000 a year, his comparable salary if he moved to Denver, Colo., would be $53,245. But groceries are 8 percent more expensive in Denver, housing is 21 percent, utilities are 20 percent, transportation 9 percent and health care 7 percent.

The increase in salary then, may not cover the added expenses. Of course, there are places like New York City, the most expensive place to live. In an article by Marketplace Money, even a salary of $250,000 is guzzled up in the high costs of the city.

Samantha Chapnick, a business consultant in New York who earns $250,000 a year, scrimps to live in a 550 sq.-foot apartment in a nice neighborhood of New York. She, her husband and 9-year-old daughter sleep in the same room of this apartment, while their microwave is in the hall closet.

What seems like a lot of money doesn’t go such a long way for Chapnick and her family.

“My husband and I have certainly said to ourselves, 'Listen, we're going to scrimp, we're gonna save,'” Chapnick said to Marketplace Money. “But at the end of the year you look at it and you think, maybe the biggest ticket item we ever buy is maybe an Apple laptop computer at $2,000. It's not like our big ticket item is like a new Lexus or a BMW. It's not a $10,000 vacation.”

Going back to the moving example, the equivalent to making $250,000 is a little more than $110,000 in Rochester, but groceries are 57 percent higher while housing is an incredible 342 percent more.

Even compared to another expensive area like Orange County, Calif., housing in NYC is 80 percent pricier.

Check the price changes when considering a move. What may sound like a raise in salary could end up being more expensive than before.

EMAIL: alovell@deseretnews.com

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