Top Cities for Accountant Salary by State

What city has the highest accounting salaries? If you want to maximize your accounting salary, but can’t get to the top paying cities in the country (New York, San Francisco), you might want to know what city pays the most for accountants in your state.

The list below shows the top paying cities for accountants in 35 US states (data was not available for all 50 states). Use this as a guide for finding your best accounting salary. The table includes the state, city with the highest accounting salary, and average accounting salary for that city.

To create these forecasts, we used the average accountant salary for 2014 from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics ($73,670) and combined it the city variance data contained in the 2015 Salary Guide for Accounting and Finance from Robert Half.

State City with Highest Accountant Salaries Average Accountant Salary
Alabama Birmingham $69,987
Arizona Phoenix $79,564
California San Francisco $101,665
Colorado Boulder $84,942
Connecticut Stamford $96,508
District of Columbia Washington $97,244
Florida Fort Lauderdale $78,827
Georgia Atlanta $77,354
Hawaii Honolulu $69,250
Illinois Chicago $90,614
Indiana Indianapolis $69,250
Iowa Des Moines $73,670
Kansas Kansas City $71,460
Louisiana Baton Rouge $72,933
Maryland Baltimore $75,880
Massachusetts Boston $97,981
Michigan Ann Arbor $74,038
Minnesota Minneapolis $78,090
Missouri St. Louis $73,891
Nebraska Omaha $70,723
Nevada Reno $69,987
New Hampshire Manchester/Nashua $82,510
New Jersey Paramus $95,771
New York New York $102,401
North Carolina Raleigh $76,617
Oklahoma Tulsa $67,776
Oregon Portland $78,459
Pennsylvania Philadelphia $84,721
Rhode Island Providence $71,460
Tennessee Cool Springs $72,933
Texas Midland/Odessa $84,721
Utah Salt Lake City $74,407
Virginia Norfolk $97,244
Washington Seattle $87,594
Wisconsin Milwaukee $74,038

So what do we learn from this list? Well, the first thing is that the biggest salaries are normally being paid in the largest cities. For example, Washington State accountants should work in Seattle and Massachusetts accountants will get paid the most in Boston. However, there are a couple of nice surprises. If you’re in Nevada, stay clear of Vegas and live in the foothills of Lake Tahoe by working in Reno. Colorado accountant salaries are not actually the highest in Denver, but rather in Boulder, which is consistently ranked one of the most livable cities in the United States.

If you want more specific data on each type of accountant, have a look at our article on Graduate Accounting Salaries in 2015. Remember also that, as noted in the Robert Half survey, salaries for most entry-level positions are 5 – 15% higher for those with graduate degree (e.g., Graduate Certificate or a Master’s Degree) or specialized certifications.

Want to get started on your own accounting path? Head on over to our college search page to find the right program for you!