- Rose Kennedy For the AJC
If you're looking for work or a step up on the career ladder, there is no shortage of top-ranking picks for job seekers, according to recent Indeed.com ranking of the top cities for job seekers.
Before you dash off to Orlando (Indeed's No. 2 pick) or pack for Atlanta (No. 14), check out another set of numbers.
Eye each new city's cost of living with the help of a nifty calculator provided by NerdWallet. Powered by data from the nonprofit Council for Community and Economic Research, the calculator tells you just how much money you'd need to make it in another city, enjoying at least the same standard of living as you have in your current city.
Here are examples of NerdWallet calculations for job seekers coming to or leaving Atlanta:
Note: Atlanta’s average salary is used as a starting point for this comparison to the Top 5 Indeed "Best cities for job seekers." According to Pay Scale, the average Atlanta salary is about $59,000.
Job market favorability: 82 percent
Salary percentile: 8 percent
With a $59,000 Atlanta salary, you would need to earn $65,863 to maintain your standard of living in Miami-Dade County.
One major employer in Miami is cruise line giant Carnival, and the biggest major industries are trade, transport and utilities.
The cost of living is 12 percent higher in Miami than Atlanta.
Job market favorability: 98 percent
Salary percentile: 18 percent
Someone who earns $59,000 in Atlanta would need to earn $56,291 to maintain the same standard of living in Orlando.
Many of the job prospects that make Orlando so favorable do involve working for the Mouse. The top employer in the area is the Walt Disney Company with 53,500 employees, though trade and transport do diversify the job opportunities.
The cost of living is 5 percent lower in Orlando than in Atlanta.
3. Raleigh, North Carolina
Job market favorability: 100 percent
Salary percentile: 65 percent
With a $59,000 salary in Atlanta, you would need to make $55,749 in Raleigh to maintain your standard of living.
Major employers in Raleigh, part of the area known as the "Research Triangle," include Duke University and Health System and IBM.
The cost of living is 6 percent lower in Raleigh than Atlanta.
Job market favorability: 90 percent
Salary percentile: 65 percent
If you make a $59,000 salary in Atlanta, you would need to earn $56,772 to maintain the same standard of living in Austin.
Not just a hipster hub and home to Austin City Limits, Austin is a major tech hub, and firms including Apple, Dell and Indeed all have headquarters or major regional offices at the Texas state capitol. NerdWallet estimates the rent on a two-bedroom apartment in Austin at $1,184 and the median home price at $276,634.
The cost of living is 4 percent lower in Austin than in Atlanta.
5. Sacramento, California
Job market favorability: 69 percent
Salary percentile: 86 percent
As the Golden State capitol, government accounts for 25 percent of all employment in Sacramento.
If you earn the average Atlanta salary of $59,00, to maintain your standard of living in Sacramento, you'd need to earn $70,198.
The cost of living is 19 percent higher in Sacramento than in Atlanta.
New York and Chicago are among the many populous cities that didn't rank as a top pick for job seekers. If someone from there wanted to move to Atlanta and enjoy a comparable standard of living, here's what the calculator says they'd need to make:
According to Pay Scale, the average Manhattan salary is around $69,000. To move from there to Atlanta you'd need to make just $29,920 to maintain your same standard of living. According to NerdWallet, the cost of living is 57 percent lower in Atlanta than New York City. Start spreading the news!
The average salary in Chicago is around $63,000, according to Pay Scale. To earn a comparable amount in Atlanta you'd need to make almost $11,000 less, or $51,882. The cost of living is 18 percent lower in Atlanta than Chicago.
And one more for the trivia buffs. According to Kiplinger's "Cheapest U.S. Cities to Live In," McAllen, Texas on the Rio Grande has the lowest cost of living among cities in the U.S. The median household income there is around $44,254. If a household from McAllen was lured to Atlanta, they'd need to make $12,000 more than they did in Texas. The cost of living is 29 percent higher in Atlanta than it is in the nation's most affordable city in which to live.View full experience