2016 Cost of Living Statistics Released


The cost to live in Columbia has again fallen below the national average. Living costs in Columbia were 5% below the nationwide average according to the ACCRA Cost of Living Index provided by the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER). Columbia received a composite index figure of 95.0 for 2016. The figure refers to $100 worth of goods purchased in an average U.S. city only costing $95 in Columbia.

Items on which the Index is based have been carefully chosen to reflect the different categories of consumer expenditures. The composite Index is based on six weighted components. Columbia’s figures for these components were: grocery items 97.8; housing 83.9; utilities 104.5; transportation 92; health care 101.5; and miscellaneous goods and services 99.9. Items are priced by Chamber staff three times a year at a specified time and according to standardized specifications. It is important to note that the Index does not measure inflation or price change over time.

“This goes to show that Columbia is, and has remained, a desirable place to live, learn, work, and play,” Columbia Chamber of Commerce President Matt McCormick said. “Companies pay attention to these numbers because they look for affordable communities to grow their business and communities where employees’ families will be happy.”

Knowing our cost of living in Columbia is lower than the average for the United States, we are better able to attract new residents and businesses to the area.

The Columbia Chamber of Commerce was established in 1905 and is a voluntary, member-supported organization of business, industrial and professional people who are dedicated to developing, promoting and maintaining a sound and healthy economic climate for Columbia.  The Columbia Chamber of Commerce is recognized as a 5-Star Accredited Chamber by the United States Chamber of Commerce.