doxo, the innovative web and mobile bill pay service, today released its newest statistical report: America’s Household Bills, Unbundled. Updated for 2020, the report is comprised of an interactive infographic with regional details along with an accompanying report with the key insights & analysis summary. Together these components reveal what Americans pay for their nine most common monthly bills and key expense trends for the top 25 U.S. metros. The average American household spends $914 per month, or 17% of their household income, on the nine most common bills (excluding housing expenses like rent or mortgage), according to the doxoINSIGHTS report. doxoINSIGHTS analyzes anonymized, aggregated payment statistics – from over four million consumers, representing every U.S. county, to more than 60,000 billers across 45 different service categories – to reveal the actual, unfiltered average cost consumers pay for key household bills. Across the 25 metro areas analyzed, the average bill bundle rose from $859 in last year’s report to $914 in doxoINSIGHTS’ 2020 report, an increase of 6%.
While the national average on monthly expenses is $914 per household, the report found that the Miami metro ranks highest for monthly bill expenditures for the second year running, coming in at $1,008. Miami’s average, which is 23% of Miami area median household income of $52,667, has risen just over $50 from the year prior average of $950, largely accounted for by a $29 jump in the utilities category. After Miami, the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, Houston, and Seattle round out the top five in terms of average bill bundle size.
Salt Lake City comes in as the most affordable metro in the top 25, with an average of $823 spent per month on household bills, in contrast with the Charlotte, NC area which claimed the spot last year. Utilities went up by 8 percent, or $19 in Charlotte, bumping it up to the 23rd spot on the list.
25 Largest Metro Areas (Most to least expensive for the nine most common household bills)
1. $1,008 Miami
2. $982 San Francisco
3. $977 Los Angeles
4. $956 Houston
5. $953 Seattle
6. $952 Pittsburgh
7. $940 Detroit
8. $938 Minneapolis
9. $928 Denver
10. $918 Boston
11. $917 Kansas City
12. $917 New York
13. $913 Columbus
14. $912 Philadelphia
15. $907 Washington D.C.
16. $906 Cleveland
17. $896 St. Louis
18. $884 Dallas
19. $884 Atlanta
20. $882 Chicago
21. $875 Portland
22. $870 Orlando
23. $862 Charlotte
24. $858 Sacramento
25. $823 Salt Lake City
“Following the doxoINSIGHTS COVID-19 report and at a time when trimming extra expenditures is more important than ever for most Americans, doxo offers Americans insight into how affordable their bills are compared to other regions, including the nuance of how high or low specific categories are relative to other cities,” said Steve Shivers, CEO of doxo. “When financial data becomes transparent, consumers win. This data empowers households, providing insight into a huge part of the typical household budget, enabling better comparison of personal expenses, and allowing more informed financial decisions.”
The findings outline the average costs of the top nine most common household bills, excluding mortgage or rent payments, including: Alarm & Security; Auto Insurance; Auto Loans; Cable, Internet & Phone; Mobile Phone; Health Insurance; Dental Insurance; Life Insurance; and Utilities (electric, gas, water & sewer, and waste & recycling). doxo’s basket of nine bills excludes housing and rent expenses, since these expenses are well addressed in other real-estate focused studies, and by focusing on the other essential categories the bill expense basket is better normalized for comparison across different geographies.
Together, they make up America’s Bundle of Bills, 2020, where the combined auto-related bills (loans and insurance) far and away are the highest average monthly expense for Americans at $560, or 11% of the average household income. This includes a $23 increase in auto loan payments, from $350 last year, which was the largest average increase across all categories. Utilities rank as the second most expensive bill overall, averaging $290 nationwide, a $13 jump from the year before.
Top 25 Metro Average Spend of the Most Common Monthly Bills Paid, Most to Least Expensive:
- Auto Loans: $373
- Utilities: $290
- Auto Insurance: $187
- Health Insurance: $98
- Life Insurance: $78
- Cable, Satellite, Internet & Phone: $109
- Mobile Phone: $88
- Alarm & Security: $77
- Dental Insurance: $27
While metros like New York and the San Francisco Bay Area are notorious for their high costs of living, they are more affordable than they seem when it comes to household bills. Bay Area residents, for example, live in the second most expensive metro area by bill bundle size, but the second least expensive area when accounting for the percentage of monthly household income that is spent on bills at 13%.
The two cities whose rankings changed most significantly over the past year were Minneapolis-St. Paul, which jumped from number 24 to number 8 in 2019, and Seattle-Tacoma, which rose from 18th to 5th on the list. Minneapolis households average monthly bills of $938, which includes a 10% YoY jump in auto loan payments ($39), a 12% increase in utilities ($29), and a 29% spike in alarm and security ($26). Utility bills rose 9% in Seattle ($30) and auto loans by 5% ($20) in 2019.
doxo is a simple, secure all-in-one bill pay service that facilitates secure payment to any biller, with any payment method, on any device. doxo currently serves over four million paying users who can make payments to over 60,000 local and national businesses, making doxo the largest bill pay directory in the nation. Billers on the network get paid directly, fast and free – and consumers have complete bill pay independence over when and how they pay their bills. doxo grew its user base by more than 70 percent in the past year and is expanding its team to further accelerate growth and change the bill pay landscape to focus on the customer. doxo investors include MDV, Sigma Partners, and Bezos Expeditions. doxo is based in Seattle, WA.
For more information about doxo, visit www.doxo.com.
doxoINSIGHTS provides insight into the U.S. bill pay statistics and behavior, leveraging user surveys and doxo’s unique aggregate, anonymized bill pay data comprised of actual bill payment activity to confirmed household service providers. This foundation of validated payment behavior provides greater insight and reliability and brings together the broadest available data set for analyzing actual household payment activity. The doxoINSIGHTS bill pay data source is unique and comprehensive:
- Statistically significant, with over 4 million paying consumers;
- Geographically diverse, capturing payment activity in all 3,007 U.S. counties;
- Economically representative, with participation from all income brackets;
- Covering 45 different biller service categories, with more than 60,000 unique billers;
- Capturing all payment funding sources, including bank accounts, credit cards, and debit cards;
For more information about the methodology, visit https://www.doxo.com/insights/.
 United States Census Bureau Report – Household Income: 2018
 United States Office of Management and Budget Combined Statistical Areas