According to Bureau of Labor Statistics data, adjusted for inflation and representing median spending of all Americans, people spent nearly $18,000 on housing in 2014.
MarketWatch found what Americans spent on housing, transportation, food, and other expenditures since 1941. Housing is nearly twice as costly as it was in the early 1940s. Transportation is too, but that expenditure decreased from 2004 to 2014.
Spending on education has increased far more than any other category, jumping from $242 in 1941 to $1,236 in 2014. Education spending increased at a particularly fast rate between 1984 and 1994 and onward. While spending on health care increased between 1941 and 2014, overall spending dipped between 1973 and 1984, but then began rising rapidly thereafter.