Texas state flag

Where Texas Household Bills are the Most Expensive

How much do Texans pay on living expenses in comparison to residents of other states? doxo breaks down key insights about Texas household bills, with a close eye to how expenses differ in towns and cities across the state. For example the average household in Texas, doxo’s data reveals, pays $1,888 in bills per month.

This average monthly expenses figure takes into account the 10 most common household bills, which are: Mortgage; Rent; Auto Loan; Utilities (electric, gas, water & sewer, and waste & recycling); Auto Insurance; Cable & Internet & Phone, Health Insurance (consumer paid portion); Mobile Phone; Alarm & Security; and Life Insurance.

doxo’s data also has infographics for 70 cities and towns across Texas, breaking down localized bill pay data figures as well. The state-wide rankings for most and least expensive cities provide insight into cost of living in Texas and how it varies by location.

The data sheds light on Texas’s cost of living through other metrics, too. For example, the “percent of household income” data point shows what percentage of household income local residents spend on bills. doxo’s data also indicates how much more or less expensive specific cities are than the national and state average.

Texas residents pay $1,888 in household bills a month on average

The average Texas household pays $1,888 a month for the 10 most common household bills. This puts Texas at number 21 out of the 50 states in terms of average monthly spending. Texas’s average monthly spending on household bills is also nearly identical to the amount that US residents on average spend: $1,889.

Absolute dollar amounts don’t tell the full story, however. The “percentage of household income” metric provides a more proportional look at bill spending in a particular location. For example, New Jersey residents pay an average of $2,543 on bills per month, making the state the 3rd most expensive state for household costs. However, New Jersey residents pay 35.4% of their income on household bills. Texas households, by contrast, spend 36.0% of their income on bills.

In fact, there are 8 states in which residents pay a higher amount on average monthly bills, but end up spending a smaller percent of household income. Other than New Jersey, these include: Massachusetts, Maryland, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Virginia, Minnesota, and Illinois. All these states are located in either the East Coast or in the Midwest.

Annually, Texas residents pay $202 billion in household bills. See more data about bill pay in Texas by clicking on the infographic link below.

Data: doxoINSIGHTS’ bill pay infographic about Texas

Wikimedia image of a US map with Texas shaded in red.
  • Average Bill Cost per HH: $1,888 per month
  • State Bill Pay Market Size: $202 billion
  • doxoINSIGHTS State Rank: 21 out of 50
  • Percent of HHI Used for Bills: 36.0%
  • Difference from the National Average: 0.1% lower
  • Share of Bills Paid by Credit Card: 10%

Texas households pay less for Utilities than the national average

The average Texas household pays $1,888 in the 10 most common household bills per month. Average mortgage expenses, unsurprisingly, are the largest out of the 10 categories. They are also proportionally substantially larger than the national average: $1,412 for the average Texas monthly mortgage payment compared to $1,279 for the national average. Rent, meanwhile, is nearly identical to the national average: $1,063 in Texas, compared to $1,062 nationally.

Other than housing-related expenses, auto loans are the largest of the 10 most common bills for Texans. The average auto loan bill in Texas is $462 a month, compared to the national average of $411. This may come down to car choice: larger, more expensive vehicles cost individuals more in terms of monthly loan payments.

There are expenses, however, that are considerably lower for Texas residents than they are for US residents as a whole. Utilities is one of these. WHile the average household in Texas pays $255 per month in utilities, the national average for the same expense is $316.

Health insurance and life insurance expenses are also more affordable in Texas than they are nationally. While the average out-of-pocket health insurance payment is $93 in Texas, it is $113 nationally. And while the average life insurance payment for Texans is $74, it is $88 for US households on average.

Note: Health Insurance and Life Insurance expenses do not account for payments made by employers on behalf of employees. These just include out-of-pocket expenses.

Average Texas Household Bill Spending

Bill CategoryAverage Texas Monthly BillNational Average Monthly Bill
Mortgage$1,412$1,279
Rent$1,063$1,062
Auto Loan$462$411
Utilities$255$316
Auto Insurance$150$185
Cable & Internet$115$115
Health Insurance$93$113
Mobile Phone$116$102
Alarm & Security$96$87
Life Insurance$74$88
Total$1,888$1,889

Austin is the most expensive city in Texas for household bills

Residents of the Austin metro area (including Round Rock and Georgetown as well) pay the highest household bills in the state of Texas, at an average of $2,300 per month. This is 21.7% higher than the national average of $1,889. Brenham comes second in the rankings, with residents paying $2,182 on average per month.

Access detailed infographics about each city or town by clicking on the hyperlinks in the “City” column in the tables below. You can also browse doxoINSIGHTS’ regional bill comparison database to see infographics about more than 900 cities and towns across all 50 states in the US.

Note: Some city data includes surrounding metro areas and neighboring towns, as designated in the US Census Bureau’s Core Based Statistical Areas. (For example, Dallas is grouped with data from nearby Fort Worth and Arlington, since Census Bureau’s CBSA for Dallas does the same.)

10 Most Expensive Texas Cities for Household Bills

Rank
(1-10 out of 70)
City Monthly Bill Expenses Per Household* Percent of Household Income Used for Bills Percent +/- from National Average ($1,889)
1Austin, Round Rock, Georgetown area$2,30035.9%+21.7%
2Brenham$2,18245.9%+15.5%
3Dallas, Fort Worth, Arlington area$2,10335.4%+11.3%
4Houston, the Woodlands, Sugar Land area$2,08035.4%+10.1%
5Midland$2,03730.3%+7.9%
6Lubbock$1,99946.4%+5.8%
7College Station, Bryan area$1,89045.1%+0.0%
8San Antonio, New Braunfels area$1,87536.9%-0.7%
9Odessa$1,85937.0%-1.6%
10Amarillo$1,85339.2%-1.9%

*Household Bill Pay Expense averages shown above reflect the ten most common bills paid, including housing (rent/mortgage).

Again, percent of household income used for bills is a key metric to consider when it comes to cost of living. While average bills in Dallas, for instance, are lower than those in Brenham, residents in the larger city pay more than 10% less of their income on household bills. Of the 10 most expensive cities in Texas, it is #6, Lubbock, that pays the highest percentage of household income on bills, at 46.4%.

Urban centers in Texas, perhaps unsurprisingly, are some of the most expensive places to live in the state. Austin, Dallas and Houston, three of the four largest cities in the state, are in the top 4 cities for household bill expenses. However, San Antonio, the second most populous city in Texas, is only #8 on the list in terms of household bill spending.

Zapata is Texas’s most affordable city for household bills

The most affordable cities and towns in Texas, meanwhile, tend to be smaller on average than the most expensive ones. Zapata, with a population of less than 10,000, is the most affordable, with residents paying $1,249 on average for household bills, 33.9% lower than the national average and the state average. Household bills account for a whopping 54.5% of local income in the town.

Pecos comes in at the second most affordable town or city in Texas, with residents paying $1,297 per month on average, at 31.3% lower than the national average.

Also on the list of 10 least expensive cities in Texas are Bonham ($1,329 per month), Brownsville ($1,345 per month), and Vernon ($1,390 per month).

10 Most Affordable Texas Cities for Household Bills

Rank
(61-70 out of 70)
City Monthly Bill Expenses Per HouseholdPercent of Household Income Used for Bills Percent +/- from National Average ($1,889)
61Vernon$1,39034.1%-26.4%
62Mount Pleasant$1,35235.5%-28.4%
63Sweetwater$1,35035.9%-28.5%
64Brownsville, Harlingen area$1,34543.2%-28.8%
65El Campo$1,33632.8%-29.3%
66Mineral Wells$1,33235.5%-29.5%
67Raymondville$1,33052.1%-29.6%
68Bonham$1,32932.0%-29.6%
69Pecos$1,29726.7%-31.3%
70Zapata$1,24954.5%-33.9%

How COVID-19 migrations affects Texas and bill payments

Millions of Americans moved due to factors of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially financial ones. Texas, especially, is an epicenter in the Southern US where many individuals are moving, including many from the more expensive state of California.

For more context about bill payments in California, see the doxoINSIGHTS report about bill payments in the Golden State.

doxoINSIGHTS’ data about bill payments can be a valuable resource for consumers seeking to make decisions about where or whether to move, allowing them to compare average expenses in different cities. They can also use doxoINSIGHTS’ regional bill comparison database to compare average costs for over 900 towns and cities across the country.

Recent research from doxo also showed how COVID-19’s rise in remote work also led to elevated household expenses in certain key bill categories, specifically Utilities, Cable & Internet, and Mobile Phone. Also check out doxo’s most recent report, which breaks down the $925 that the average US household spends per year on the “hidden costs of bill pay“: added costs of credit, late fees, overdraft fees, and identity fraud.

If you have any questions or would like to sign up for updates to doxoINSIGHTS’ research, email aria.thaker@doxo.com

, , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.

Menu