# This Is the Salary You Need To Afford a New Car in Your State

Find out if you live in a more affordable state for car owners.View Gallery

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You might already know that feeling of exhilaration when you’re handed the keys to a new car. It’s a feeling that lasts long after you start up the engine and drive your new vehicle off the lot.

The one thing that can damper that feeling, however, is the arrival of the payment due date, which means that you’ll have to start forking over a portion of your hard-earned salary each month to pay for your new purchase.

And owning a car isn’t exactly cheap: The average salary needed to afford a car across all U.S. states is $81,699.

If that sounds like a lot, consider that when you own a car, it’s not just the car payments that you have to budget for. Drivers also need to factor in other costs like repairs — expected or unexpected — and fuel.

It shouldn’t be a surprise that owning a car takes some serious cash. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, transportation is often the second-largest annual expenditure — out of food, housing, transportation, healthcare and personal insurance — for U.S. families.

Even so, you might be lucky enough to live in a state that’s more affordable than the average. For example, in Alaska, residents only need an average annual salary of $75,576.13 to afford their ride.

Or you might live in a state where owning a vehicle is a considerable expense, such as Nevada, where the average driver has to earn over $18,000 more, or $93,954.19.

Whatever the case, the good news is that you don’t have to trouble yourself with compiling or calculating data to figure out where you stand. GOBankingRates looked at a variety of factors to determine the average salary needed in each state to fit the expense of a new car — which will run you an average of $37,169 in the U.S., according to Kelly Blue Book — comfortably into your budget. The study factored in average annual car payments, miles per gallon, fuel expenses, repair costs and registration fees. The state rankings are based on the minimum salary needed from lowest to highest.

## Alaska

**Annual gas cost:**$1,710.04**Annual repair cost:**$362.12**Annual payments:**$5,832**Registration fee:**$50 ($100 biennially)**Total annual cost:**$7,954

**Minimum salary needed:** $75,576.13

## New Hampshire

**Annual gas cost:**$1,831.55**Annual repair cost:**$345.70**Annual payments:**$5,760**Registration fee:**$43.20**Total annual cost:**$7,980

**Minimum salary needed:** $75,825.87

## Iowa

**Annual gas cost:**$1,558.62**Annual repair cost:**$339.93**Annual payments:**$6,156**Registration fee:**$16**Total annual cost:**$8,071

**Minimum salary needed:** $76,682.04

## Montana

**Annual gas cost:**$1,759.85**Annual repair cost:**$373.76**Annual payments:**$5,748**Registration fee:**$217**Total annual cost:**$8,099

**Minimum salary needed:** $76,948.60

## Delaware

**Annual gas cost:**$1,629.15**Annual repair cost:**$373.94**Annual payments:**$6,084**Registration fee:**$40**Total annual cost:**$8,127

**Minimum salary needed:** $77,219.23

## Oregon

**Annual gas cost:**$1,940.06**Annual repair cost:**$366.37**Annual payments:**$5,796**Registration fee:**$43**Total annual cost:**$8,145

**Minimum salary needed:** $77,393.47

## Massachusetts

**Annual gas cost:**$1,574.91**Annual repair cost:**$363.71**Annual payments:**$6,252**Registration fee:**$60**Total annual cost:**$8,251

**Minimum salary needed:** $78,392.91

## Virginia

**Annual gas cost:**$1,772.94**Annual repair cost:**$381.68**Annual payments:**$6,060**Registration fee:**$40.75**Total annual cost:**$8,255

**Minimum salary needed: **$78,438.07

## Alabama

**Annual gas cost:**$1,777.35**Annual repair cost:**$374.09**Annual payments:**$6,108**Registration fee:**$23**Total annual cost:**$8,282

**Minimum salary needed:** $78,695.22

## Rhode Island

**Annual gas cost:**$1,545.09**Annual repair cost:**$379.61**Annual payments:**$6,324**Registration fee:**$39.33 ($30 for vehicles under 4,000 lbs., $40 for vehicles 4,000-5,000 lbs. and $48 for vehicles 5,000-6,000 lbs.)**Total annual cost:**$8,288

**Minimum salary needed:** $78,748.43

## South Carolina

**Annual gas cost:**$2,048.94**Annual repair cost:**$370.07**Annual payments:**$5,856**Registration fee:**$40**Total annual cost:**$8,315

**Minimum salary needed:** $79,004.68

## Nebraska

**Annual gas cost:**$1,804.06**Annual repair cost:**$349.75**Annual payments:**$6,156**Registration fee:**$15**Total annual cost:**$8,325

**Minimum salary needed:** $79,097.85

## Ohio

**Annual gas cost:**$1,626.13**Annual repair cost:**$335.26**Annual payments:**$6,360**Registration fee:**$34.50**Total annual cost:**$8,356

**Minimum salary needed:** $79,393.10

## Connecticut

**Annual gas cost:**$1,648.69**Annual repair cost:**$393.16**Annual payments:**$6,252**Registration fee:**$80**Total annual cost:**$8,374

**Minimum salary needed:** $79,563.82

## Oklahoma

**Annual gas cost:**$1,872.95**Annual repair cost:**$358.04**Annual payments:**$6,060**Registration fee:**$85**Total annual cost:**$8,376

**Minimum salary needed:** $79,584.10

## Wisconsin

**Annual gas cost:**$1,787.86**Annual repair cost:**$337.89**Annual payments:**$6,216**Registration fee:**$75**Total annual cost:**$8,417

**Minimum salary needed:** $79,971.42

## North Carolina

**Annual gas cost:**$1,951.94**Annual repair cost:**$375.42**Annual payments:**$6,060**Registration fee:**$36**Total annual cost:**$8,423

**Minimum salary needed:** $80,034.20

## South Dakota

**Annual gas cost:**$1,856.14**Annual repair cost:**$364.79**Annual payments:**$6,156**Registration fee:**$90**Total annual cost:**$8,467

**Minimum salary needed:** $80,448.22

## North Dakota

**Annual gas cost:**$1,802.75**Annual repair cost:**$339.78**Annual payments:**$6,192**Registration fee:**$161.50**Total annual cost:**$8,496

**Minimum salary needed:** $80,724.65

## Tennessee

**Annual gas cost:**$1,787.99**Annual repair cost:**$372.84**Annual payments:**$6,312**Registration fee:**$23.75**Total annual cost:**$8,497

**Minimum salary needed:** $80,729.90

## Mississippi

**Annual gas cost:**$1,957.59**Annual repair cost:**$370.06**Annual payments:**$6,156**Registration fee:**$15**Total annual cost:**$8,499

**Minimum salary needed:** $80,749.53

## Colorado

**Annual gas cost:**$1,716.85**Annual repair cost:**$375.57**Annual payments:**$6,408**Registration fee:**$0**Total annual cost:**$8,500

**Minimum salary needed: **$80,766.40

## New Mexico

**Annual gas cost:**$2,085.10**Annual repair cost:**$360.99**Annual payments:**$6,012**Registration fee:**$44.50**Total annual cost:**$8,503

**Minimum salary needed:** $80,787.05

## Pennsylvania

**Annual gas cost:**$1,878.43**Annual repair cost:**$359.63**Annual payments:**$6,240**Registration fee:**$36**Total annual cost:**$8,514

**Minimum salary needed:** $80,895.99

## Indiana

**Annual gas cost:**$1,943.70**Annual repair cost:**$360.95**Annual payments:**$6,264**Registration fee:**$21.35**Total annual cost:**$8,590

**Minimum salary needed:** $81,617.57

## Missouri

**Annual gas cost:**$2,004.87**Annual repair cost:**$357.80**Annual payments:**$6,185**Registration fee:**$51**Total annual cost:**$8,599

**Minimum salary needed:** $81,702.61

## West Virginia

**Annual gas cost:**$1,959.13**Annual repair cost:**$358.50**Annual payments:**$6,264**Registration fee:**$30**Total annual cost:**$8,612

**Minimum salary needed:** $81,823.04

## New York

**Annual gas cost:**$1,777.24**Annual repair cost:**$377.28**Annual payments:**$6,420**Registration fee:**$53.75 (Biennial registration fees start at $26 for vehicles under 1,650 lbs. and increase $1.50 for every 100 lbs. over)**Total annual cost:**$8,628

**Minimum salary needed:** $81,981.15

## Kansas

**Annual gas cost:**$1,714.99**Annual repair cost:**$352.67**Annual payments:**$6,528**Registration fee:**$35 ($30 for vehicles less than 4,500 lbs., or $40 for vehicles over 4,500 lbs.)**Total annual cost:**$8,631

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,003.90

## Louisiana

**Annual gas cost:**$1,700.62**Annual repair cost:**$366.56**Annual payments:**$6,540**Registration fee:**$37.17 (Automobile license plates are based upon the selling price of the vehicle. The current rate is 0.1% of the value of the vehicle per year, with a minimum base of $10,000.)**Total annual cost:**$8,644

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,133.92

## Florida

**Annual gas cost:**$1,737.77**Annual repair cost:**$366.68**Annual payments:**$6,288**Registration fee:**$257.50 ($225 initial registration plus $14.50 for vehicles under 2,500 lbs., $22.50 for vehicles 2,500-3,499 lbs. and $32.50 for vehicles over 3,500 lbs.)**Total annual cost:**$8,650

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,187.18

## Maryland

**Annual gas cost:**$1,880.28**Annual repair cost:**$379.49**Annual payments:**$6,264**Registration fee:**$135**Total annual cost:**$8,659

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,270.92

## Maine

**Annual gas cost:**$2,142.51**Annual repair cost:**$337.74**Annual payments:**$6,156**Registration fee:**$35**Total annual cost:**$8,671

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,389.52

## Idaho

**Annual gas cost:**$2,031.98**Annual repair cost:**$362.24**Annual payments:**$6,228**Registration fee:**$69**Total annual cost:**$8,691

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,579.28

## Hawaii

**Annual gas cost:**$2,067.83**Annual repair cost:**$389.19**Annual payments:**$6,120**Registration fee:**$69**Total annual cost:**$8,692

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,586.83

## Georgia

**Annual gas cost:**$2,036.60**Annual repair cost:**$395.05**Annual payments:**$6,264**Registration fee:**$20**Total annual cost:**$8,716

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,811.39

## Michigan

**Annual gas cost:**$1,866.61**Annual repair cost:**$333.26**Annual payments:**$6,288**Registration fee:**$234**Total annual cost:**$8,722

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,870.50

## New Jersey

**Annual gas cost:**$1,966.80**Annual repair cost:**$384.92**Annual payments:**$6,288**Registration fee:**$84 (Fee based on age and weight of vehicle)**Total annual cost:**$8,724

**Minimum salary needed:** $82,888.04

## Washington

**Annual gas cost:**$1,999.02**Annual repair cost:**$368.43**Annual payments:**$6,408**Registration fee:**$30**Total annual cost:**$8,805

**Minimum salary needed:** $83,664.63

## Vermont

**Annual gas cost:**$2,121.34**Annual repair cost:**$357.48**Annual payments:**$6,264**Registration fee:**$70 ($140 biennially)**Total annual cost:**$8,813

**Minimum salary needed:** $83,734.63

## Minnesota

**Annual gas cost:**$1,708.24**Annual repair cost:**$353.28**Annual payments:**$6,300**Registration fee:**$471.61 (Registration fee based on the value of the vehicle. $10 plus an additional tax equal to 1.25% of the base value of the vehicle.)**Total annual cost:**$8,833

**Minimum salary needed:** $83,927.59

## Texas

**Annual gas cost:**$2,193.13**Annual repair cost:**$361.89**Annual payments:**$6,252**Registration fee:**$50.75**Total annual cost:**$8,858

**Minimum salary needed:** $84,161.73

## Illinois

**Annual gas cost:**$1,933.10**Annual repair cost:**$352.54**Annual payments:**$6,504**Registration fee:**$101**Total annual cost:**$8,891

**Minimum salary needed:** $84,474.08

## Kentucky

**Annual gas cost:**$2,369.89**Annual repair cost:**$368.36**Annual payments:**$6,192**Registration fee:**$21**Total annual cost:**$8,951

**Minimum salary needed:** $85,049.96

## Utah

**Annual gas cost:**$2,342.41**Annual repair cost:**$374.17**Annual payments:**$6,336**Registration fee:**$43**Total annual cost:**$9,096

**Minimum salary needed:** $86,421.30

## Arkansas

**Annual gas cost:**$2,418.48**Annual repair cost:**$363.10**Annual payments:**$6,300**Registration fee:**$25 ($25 for vehicles 3,000-4,500 lbs.)**Total annual cost:**$9,107

**Minimum salary needed:** $86,525.81

## Wyoming

**Annual gas cost:**$2,728.32**Annual repair cost:**$366.63**Annual payments:**$6,120**Registration fee:**$30**Total annual cost:**$9,245

**Minimum salary needed:** $87,840.50

## Arizona

**Annual gas cost:**$2,227.90**Annual repair cost:**$360.85**Annual payments:**$6,720**Registration fee:**$8**Total annual cost:**$9,317

**Minimum salary needed:** $88,522.73

## California

**Annual gas cost:**$2,196.38**Annual repair cost:**$385.42**Annual payments:**$6,756**Registration fee:**$46**Total annual cost:**$9,384

**Minimum salary needed:** $89,159.82

## Nevada

**Annual gas cost:**$3,051.04**Annual repair cost:**$372.36**Annual payments:**$6,432**Registration fee:**$33**Total annual cost:**$9,888

**Minimum salary needed:** $93,954.19

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*Methodology: GOBankingRates determined the minimum salary you need to afford a new car in your state using the following assumptions: the car has an MSRP of $37,169 — the average cost for a light vehicle in the United States, according to a July 2019 report from Kelley Blue Book — the car has a weight of 3,500 pounds and the driver makes a 20% down payment of $7,434. The study also factored in total vehicle expenses (“vehicle purchases [net outlay]”), gas (“other fuels and motor fuel”), and “other vehicle expenses” (excluding vehicle insurance) making up 10.5247% of one’s income before taxes, as sourced from the 2017 Consumer Expenditure Survey from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. With these constants GOBankingRates found the following factors for each state: (1) average number of miles driven, sourced from the Federal Highway Administration; (2) average miles per gallon, sourced from the Federal Highway Administration; (3) average price of regular gas per gallon, sourced from AAA; (4) cost of gas per year calculated by dividing factors three and two and taking that figure and multiplying it by factor one; (5) registration fees, sourced from the National Conference of State Legislatures 2017 Vehicle Registration Fees presentation; (6) annual repair costs, sourced from CarMd’s 2018 State Repair Cost Rankings; and (7) annual car loan payments as calculated by both CarMax and the Hawaiian Hawaii Community Federal Union: Auto Loan Calculator. Factors four, five, six and seven were combined to give a final (8) total annual cost, which was then divided by 10.5247% to give (9) the minimum salary required to afford a new car. All data was collected and is up to date as of Aug. 27, 2019.*

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