Cost of Living in Rochester, NY, United States

Updated On July 26, 2023

How Much Does It Cost to Live In Rochester, NY?

Rochester is a mid-sized city on the shores of Lake Ontario and since it’s often considered the birthplace of amateur photography, Rochester has long been known as Kodak Town.

Rochester is a very beautiful place to live if you like nature and the outdoors, and another plus is that this is a city where you’ll experience all four seasons!

There is so much to do and see here: regardless of what your interests are, you’ll find this is a city of arts, culture, food, and literally just about anything.

Cost of Living Index:
* Based on Research & User Data


The city is known for its bars and beers.

The best ones are located in the Park Avenue area.

Apart from the bars and restaurants, you’ll find all the regular chain restaurants where you can eat for a couple of dollars.

Bear in mind that high menu prices are not necessarily indicative of food quality.



Rochester has all the known supermarkets, but the interesting phenomenon here is the intensely long lines in stores during the 1st week of every month.

There are always express lanes in stores, but if you want to go shopping for more than 5 items, your best bet is to wait and go shopping after that first week.

Rochester also has the popular grocery store, Wegmans.



The area bus system is called the Regional Transit Service which offers clean, efficient, comfortable, and cheap buses, yet the service has often been criticized as inconvenient.

Fares are 1$ per ride, or 3$ for an all-day pass and with 14$ you get a five-day pass while 56$ buys you rides for a full month.



Utilities in Rochester aren’t the least bit more expensive than utilities anywhere else in America.

They vary but you can calculate a rough 140 per month which includes paying for trash, water, and sewer.

Don’t forget that the price of utilities does depend on the amount of electricity you use and on the size of your apartment.

Sports and leisure


The parks system in Rochester is one of the best in the nation.

A little bit of a drive outside of Rochester and you have the finger lakes, Bristol mountain ski resort, Niagara Falls, and much more.

There is a biking trail near the Mount Hope area as well, so there are many opportunities for outdoor activities.

If you need to find a gym, pricing starts at around 60$ a month.

Clothing and shoes


Shopping around Rochester is dominated by the major shopping strips in the suburbia.

Downtown, you won’t find many large chains: instead, you’ll find many independent shops and boutiques, and you can support them by shopping there.

There are around six of them in Rochester.

Clothes from national chains cost the same as anywhere else: 40$ for quality jeans and around 80$ for running shoes.

Rent per month


The rent is very cheap compared to the rest of the east coast.

If you’re looking for a house in the very center of Rochester, then count on paying nearly 1010$.

Luckily, it doesn’t make much of a difference where you are, since the apartments a bit further from the center are just a bit less expensive: around 990$.

Cost of Living Averages Table for Rochester, NY

*Note: All prices are indicated in USD.
Average Restaurant Prices
Meal (Inexpensive Restaurant)$24.00
Domestic Beer (0.5 Liter)$4.00
Water (0.33 Liter)$1.71
Average Market Prices
Milk (1 Liter)$0.90
Loaf Bread (500g)$2.36
Eggs (12)$3.78
Average Transport Prices
One Way Ticket$1.00
Monthly Pass$56.00
Average Utilities Prices
Basic (Water, Electricity, Garbage, Heating, Cooling)$137.63
1 min. of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local$0.13
Internet (Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL)$68.25
Average Leisure Prices
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult$59.33
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour)$30.00
Cinema, 1 Seat, International Release$11.50
Average Clothing Prices
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Comparable)$38.83
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, etc...)$25.00
1 Pair of Adidas Walking Shoes (Mid-Range)$79.17
Average Rent Prices
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Center$1016.00
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Center$992.5
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Center$1870.00

How Does the Average Person Spend Their Money in Rochester, NY?

The biggest expense of living in Rochester is food – as in most cities around the world.

Rent is the next big expense, taking up close to 30% of all income, which is still a high percentage and just goes to show how expensive rent is in this city.

Sports and staying fit take up more money than utilities from the people of Rochester, percentage-wise.

As in almost all cities of the world, what takes the smallest amount of money are clothing and shoes.

Average Costs Breakdown


Rochester, NY: Average Salary, Minimum Wage & Mortgages

The biggest issue in Rochester would probably be the job market: namely unless you are moving there and you already have a job lined up, it may be a struggle to find one.

And here is why employment is a problem: all the big employers in 1993 – Kodak, Xerox, Bausch & Lomb- have all shrunk, gone through bankruptcy, and/or been sold. Now the big employers are universities, hospitals, and the Wegmans supermarket chain.

The average monthly salary in Rochester isn’t very high – around 1900$, and there’s a small gap between the average and minimum wage: the latter is just 1800$.

Average Salary$4600.00
Minimum Wage$1802.67
Mortgage Interest Rate6.50%

Rochester Safety Overview

READ THE FULL REPORT: Rochester Safety Review

Safety Index:

Cost of Living by City in Rochester, NY

CityCost of Living Index
Albany, NY72.4
Albuquerque, NM72.4
Anchorage, AK72.4
Ann Arbor, MI72.4
Arlington, TX72.4
Asheville, NC72.4
Atlanta, GA72.4
Austin, TX72.4
Bakersfield, CA72.4
Baltimore, MD72.4
Bellevue, WA72.4
Bellingham, WA72.4
Berkeley, CA72.4
Birmingham, AL72.4
Boise, ID72.4
Boston, MA72.4
Boulder, CO72.4
Brooklyn, NY72.4
Buffalo, NY72.4
Burlington, VT72.4
Charleston, SC72.4
Charlotte, NC73.33
Chattanooga, TN72.4
Chicago, IL72.4
Cincinnati, OH72.4
Cleveland, OH72.4
Columbia, SC72.4
Columbus, OH72.4
Dallas, TX72.4
Dayton, OH72.4
Denver, CO72.4
Des Moines, IA72.4
Detroit, MI72.4
El Paso, TX72.4
Eugene, OR72.4
Everett, WA72.4
Fayetteville, AR72.4
Fort Myers, FL72.4
Fort Wayne, IN72.4
Fort Worth, TX72.4
Fresno, CA74.2
Gainesville, FL74.2
Grand Rapids, MI74.2
Greensboro, NC74.2
Hartford, CT74.2
Honolulu, HI74.2
Houston, TX74.2
Huntsville, AL74.2
Indianapolis, IN74.2
Irvine, CA74.2
Jacksonville, FL74.2
Jersey City, NJ74.2
Kansas City, MO74.2
Knoxville, TN74.2
Las Vegas, NV74.2
Lexington, KY74.2
Little Rock, AR74.2
Long Beach, CA74.2
Los Angeles, CA74.2
Louisville, KY74.2
Lubbock, TX74.2
Madison, WI74.2
Memphis, TN74.2
Miami, FL74.2
Milwaukee, WI74.2
Minneapolis, MN74.2
Nashville, TN74.2
New Orleans, LA74.2
New York, NY74.2
Oakland, CA74.2
Oklahoma City, OK74.2
Olympia, WA74.2
Orlando, FL74.2
Peoria, IL72.4
Philadelphia, PA72.4
Phoenix, AZ72.4
Pittsburgh, PA72.4
Portland, ME72.4
Portland, OR72.4
Raleigh, NC72.4
Reno, NV72.4
Richmond, VA74.2
Sacramento, CA74.2
Saint Louis, MO74.2
Saint Paul, MN74.2
Saint Petersburg, FL74.2
Salem, OR74.2
Salt Lake City, UT74.2
San Antonio, TX74.2
San Diego, CA74.2
San Francisco, CA74.2
San Jose, CA74.2
Santa Barbara, CA74.2
Santa Rosa, CA74.2
Seattle, WA74.2
Spokane, WA74.2
Springfield, MO74.2
Syracuse, NY74.2
Tacoma, WA74.2
Tallahassee, FL74.2
Tampa, FL74.2
Toledo, OH74.2
Tucson, AZ74.2
Tulsa, OK74.2
Vancouver, WA74.2
Virginia Beach, VA74.2
Washington, DC74.2
West Palm Beach, FL74.2
Wichita, KS74.2

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