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San Francisco apartments
San Francisco apartments
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After you land your first job out of college, you’re likely going to be happy about your new steady income and a start to your career. But if you’re in one of the 10 most popular cities for Millennials, your starting salary may barely be covering your rent, leaving very little left over for other living expenses, savings and paying off student loan debt.

As major American cities continue to boom, rent costs are skyrocketing. And with the expected more than 1.8 million students graduating with a bachelor’s degree this month, the competition for affordable housing is only getting fiercer.

Read More: The Credit Approval Process and What to Expect

The mobile apartment and rent payment provider, RadPad, analyzed more than 150,000 apartment listings posted from September 2015 to April 2016. From there, they established what percentage of a monthly, entry-level salary college grads can expect to pay in rent for a one-bedroom apartment in 10 of the most popular American cities.

Read More: The Most Affordable Places to Live in the U.S.

In New York, for example, the median rent for a one bedroom is $3,000 per month. The average entry level employee has to budget rent on an annual salary of $47,000 per year, accounting for 77% of their income, RadPad found. In San Francisco—the most expensive city in the study—an entry level employee can expect to pay an astounding 79% of their income.

Just one of the 10 most expensive cities—Houston—comes in under the 30% threshold income rule of thumb for rental spending. Paying less of a percentage of income on rent can help you maintain better control of your finances and establish better savings and spending habits. Austin and Atlanta are also on the end of more affordable cities on the list, but both have rents with an average of 6% above the recommended 30% of average income.

Read More: Strategies for Paying Off Student Loans

Here’s how each of the 10 cities measured up, ranked from highest percentage to lowest percentage of starting monthly income.

  1. San Francisco: 79%
  2. New York City: 77%
  3. LA: 61%
  4. Boston: 56%
  5. Seattle: 51%
  6. Chicago: 47%
  7. Orlando: 44%
  8. Atlanta: 36%
  9. Austin: 36%
  10. Houston: 29%
Advertiser Disclosure

The purpose of this disclosure is to explain how we make money without charging you for our content.

Our mission is to help people at any stage of life make smart financial decisions through research, reporting, reviews, recommendations, and tools.

Earning your trust is essential to our success, and we believe transparency is critical to creating that trust. To that end, you should know that many or all of the companies featured here are partners who advertise with us.

Our content is free because our partners pay us a referral fee if you click on links or call any of the phone numbers on our site. If you choose to interact with the content on our site, we will likely receive compensation. If you don't, we will not be compensated. Ultimately the choice is yours.

Opinions are our own and our editors and staff writers are instructed to maintain editorial integrity, but compensation along with in-depth research will determine where, how, and in what order they appear on the page.

To find out more about our editorial process and how we make money, click here.

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