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Austin: city of big spenders

Austin: city of big spenders

Credit: AP


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Posted on March 24, 2010 at 11:23 PM

Hey big spender. You may think you're cutting back on your spending, but a new study finds Austin has the biggest spenders in the country.

Bundle, a social media company, found Austinites spent an average of $67,000 last year on expenses other than housing. That’s more than any of the 100 largest metro areas in the United States.

The company studied credit card information along with government and third-party research.

It found the average Austinite spent more than $15,501 on shopping, about $14,257 on health and family, $12,447 on food and drink, $10,128 on transportation and $5,072 on travel and leisure.

That means we spend 77 percent more than the national average of $37,782 on those items.

Here’s a look at the top 20 spending cities (remember this does not include mortgage or rent):

1.       Austin                   $67,026

2.       Scottsdale            $64,687

3.       San Jose              $59,022

4.       Arlington, VA         $56,746

5.       Plano                     $56,738

6.       Raleigh                 $53,398

7.       Nashville              $52,964

8.       Tucson                  $51,857

9.       Irvine                     $51,286

10.   Durham                 $51,114

11.   Washington         $49,431

12.   Dallas                   $47,920

13.   Seattle                  $47,336

14.   Reno                     $47,273

15.   Corpus Christi    $46,311

16.   San Antonio        $46,122

17.   Honolulu             $46,087

18.   Oklahoma City   $45,449

19.   San Francisco    $45,291

20.   Madison              $45,275

Sound crazy? Think about this-- people in Detroit, who’ve obviously been hit hard by the recession, spent on average $16,446 on these same items. That's the least in the country.

This study also looked at how spending changes when people get married or have kids. It found married couples with kids spend more on just about everything (okay, no surprise there), but not always as much as you’d think. The average family with children spends $46,160 on all of those items compared to households without children which tend to spend on average $40,304.

Grocery spending rises about 8 percent on average when you have kids. And young parents spend less eating out and on gas than people without kids, but after age 36 that trend reverses.

There is one place where married couples without kids tend to outspend married parents – that’s on pets and pet care.

And for all of the people who think women tend to be the spenders in the family consider this: single men spend more ($30,739) compared to single women ($25,928).

What do you think? Surprised by anything?