SAN DIEGO — For some, a six-figure salary used to mean financial freedom. Now you could make $100,000 a year and still be broke in San Diego. According to a new LendingTree study, six figures isn’t cut it anymore.
"More and more people are falling below that poverty line; it's very sad to see," Monika Sohal said in Balboa Park.
"I don't even make half that, but it is enough to pay rent," Santee resident Kendal Murphy said.
"The economy is going up, but the paycheck is staying the same," Nancy Watts said, who lives in Lakeside.
The cost of gas, groceries, childcare, healthcare, and housing have all gone up. "I go to the store, and I see a pint of blueberries for ten bucks, and I just can't do it," Sohal added.
"I shop at discount grocery stores, buy in bulk - it's changed my shopping habits," Nancy Clark said, who is visiting from LA.
According to LendingTree, high earners are struggling with the high cost of living. Their study shows a six-figure salary isn't sufficient for a family of three in San Diego. They say you can earn $100,000 and still be broke.
"Broke is a relative term, but how we defined it - is your income isn't enough to cover the basic expenses," Matt Schulz said, the Chief Credit Analyst for LendingTree.
LendingTree says that's the case for people making $100K in 16 of the largest U.S. cities. Eight are in California.
San Jose, California, took the top spot, followed by San Francisco, Oxnard, and Honolulu.
So, for example, LendingTree says a family of three bringing home more than eight grand a month has nine grand in bills - and is, therefore, in the red.
Jackson, Mississippi, topped the list for affordability.
"I have a budget for when I go to the store, and I go over it every month," Watts added.
"The cost of rent and mortgage is just outrageous, kinda tough when you're on a fixed income," Clark said.
The LendingTree advice, save what you can and avoid unnecessary debt.
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