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FYI Guy

Seattle Times news librarian Gene Balk crunches the numbers

Topic: Cost of living

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November 12, 2012 at 6:30 AM

Is Seattle one of the most expensive cities in the U.S.?

What are you paying for a haircut in Seattle? (Photo: Gene Balk/The Seattle Times)

I recently got my hair cut at the same place that I always go to on Capitol Hill (same place everyone goes to, judging by the line).  I got a standard haircut, same as always.  But did it always cost $29?  I don’t remember it being that expensive.

After my sticker shock, it didn’t surprise me all that much to come across this peculiar statistic in the newly-released Cost of Living Index: Seattle ranks second out of 304 U.S. cities for the cost of a haircut.  A barbershop cut in Seattle costs, on average, even more than it does in Manhattan — it’s 66 percent more expensive here than the average for U.S. cities.

Weird, huh?  But after looking over all the data on consumer costs in the report, I think Seattle haircuts are just an outlier.  Out of 57 goods and services — everything from home prices and doctors visits to movie tickets and dry cleaning — a haircut is Seattle’s only Top 5 item.

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