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This Map Shows How Much Money Millennials Make in Every State

Boston | Shutterstock
Boston | Shutterstock

There are countless reasons for younger people to pick up and move to a new state. Maybe it's to live somewhere a bit more beautiful, or where they can actually afford to buy a house. Perhaps they just want to escape Florida. More often than not, though, it's the promise of better job that convinces people to relocate across state lines.

But what if the main thing you're after is a fatter paycheck? If that's the case, then you'll want to check out this new map, which reveals just how much millennials earn in each state. 

HowMuch

This latest bit of wage intel comes from the folks at HowMuch, who took a look at a whole bunch of data from the U.S. Census Bureau to track the average amount of money made by people born between 1982 and 2000, or roughly the age range for millennials. They then went a step further and adjusted the average earnings figures to better reflect their true value by factoring in the cost of living in each state, and then plotted it all on a color-coded map. 

So where are the 18 to 36 year-olds cashing the biggest paychecks? Massachusetts took the top spot, where average earnings are just above $80,000, followed by Minnesota and North Dakota. On the other end of the spectrum, younger folks earn the lowest in New Mexico, where average income is just over $51,000. If you're curious how your state stacks up, here's the full ranking (including Washington, DC).

51. New Mexico -- $51,893
50. Mississippi -- $53,269
49. Florida -- $54,889
48. Louisiana -- $56,377
47. Arkansas -- $57,312
46. Tennessee -- $57,735
45. South Carolina -- $57,969
44. West Virginia -- $58,226
43. Nevada -- $58,399
42. North Carolina -- $58,818
41. Alabama -- $59,167
40. Oklahoma -- $60,311
39. Kentucky -- $60,363
38. Idaho -- $60,806
37. Georgia -- $60,851
36. Arizona -- $60,987
35. Montana -- $61,277
34. New York -- $61,552
33. Michigan -- $61,773
32. Delaware -- $61,781
31. Texas -- $62,173
30. California -- $62,873
29. Maine -- $62,934
28. Oregon -- $63,099
27. Indiana -- $64,272
26. Ohio -- $64,386
25. Vermont -- $64,464
24. Hawaii -- $64,700
23. Rhode Island -- $64,825
22. Pennsylvania -- $65,213
21. Missouri -- $66,144
20. Kansas -- $66,908
19. Illinois -- $68,714
18. Colorado -- $69,024
17. Wisconsin -- $69,526
16. Connecticut -- $69,623
15. Iowa -- $69,739
14. Washington -- $70,441
13. Nebraska -- $70,870
12. South Dakota -- $70,989
11. Utah -- $71,284
10. Virginia -- $71,397
9. New Jersey -- $72,150
8. Alaska -- $72,374
7. Wyoming -- $73,345
6. New Hampshire -- $73,941
5. Maryland -- $74,737
4. Washington, DC -- $75,220
3. North Dakota -- $76,836
2. Minnesota -- $77,090
1. Massachusetts -- $80,307

By and large, millennials in the South and on the West Coast are earning less on average than their peers in the Northeast and Midwest. It's also interesting to compare the highest-earning states for millennials with the states that actually have the best job markets at the moment, considering only one state is in the top 10 on both lists, while several of the same places are among the worst in their respective rankings. 

Of course, if you're looking to relocate explicitly in hopes of putting some more money in the bank, there are also quite a few places that will actually pay you to move there.

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Joe McGauley is a senior writer for Thrillist. Follow him @jwmcgauley.