There’s plenty of opportunity for financial advisors, and the data shows the trend is expected to continue over the next few years. Despite that, all states are not created equal, and purchasing power and salaries depend greatly on where an advisor sets up shop.

While O*Net OnLine, which compiles salary data for various occupations, projects that there will be 96,400 job openings in the 10-year period of 2012 to 2022, drilling down into the numbers reveals the states where real dollars earned will leave advisors faring poorly relative to their colleagues in other locales.

After ThinkAdvisor compiled our 12 Best States for Advisor Pay: 2015, we decided to flip the script. Some places on the list – like Hawaii – might be paradise on some levels but only if you’re trying to get the most bang for the buck.

To determine the rankings we used the formula we devised last year, which adjusted salary information from O*Net and then turned to Top 50 States, which lists cost of living data for each state. That allowed us to see just where financial advisors’ salaries stretch the farthest.

For the record, the mean U.S. salary for financial advisors in 2014 was $81,060, up nearly $6,000 over the previous year.

For each of our top 12 states, we used areavibes.com’s ratings to find the best place to live.

A boat moves along the canal in the Bricktown area of Oklahoma City. (Photo: AP)

12. Oklahoma

Adjusted Mean Salary: $57,580

Above National Mean: $23,480

Dollar Factor: 92.1%

Best City: Norman

A few cities were tied in Area Vibe’s rankings, but we went for the college town. Boomer Sooner.

Old State Capitol in Baton Rouge. (Photo: AP)

11. Louisiana

Adjusted Mean Salary: $62,133

Below National Mean: $18,927

Dollar Factor: 94.7%

Best City: Westminster is a suburb of Baton Rouge, the state capital.

ANB Harbor in Sitka. (Photo: AP)

10. Alaska

Adjusted Mean Salary: $61,088

Below National Mean: $19,972

Dollar Factor: 133.2%

Best City: Sitka

The town traces its roots to the days when Russia ruled and is the only one in the southeast part of the state that faces the Gulf of Alaska head on.

Clemson Tigers at an NCAA college football game. (Photo: AP)

9. South Carolina

Adjusted Mean Salary: $60,693

Below National Mean: $20,367

Dollar Factor: 95.2%

Best City: Clemson

The college town is located in the northwest part of the Palmetto State near the Smoky Mountains.

Mississippi flags at State Capitol in Jackson. (Photo: AP)

8. Mississippi

Adjusted Mean Salary: $60,513

Above National Mean: $20,547

Dollar Factor: 87.6%

Best City: Madison

The town of about 15,000 is in the Jackson area.

A cyclist in South Mountain Park in Phoenix. (Photo: AP)

7. Arizona

Adjusted Mean Salary: $58,654

Above National Mean: $22,406

Dollar Factor: 100.3%

Best City: Gilbert

The Phoenix area town of more than 200,000 is the largest incorporated town in the country.

Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. (Photo: AP)

6. Kentucky

Adjusted Mean Salary: $57,063

Below National Mean: $28,361

Dollar Factor: 92.3%

Best City: Edgewood

The suburb of Cincinnati, with more than 9,000 residents, is the largest of several towns tied for “best” in the Blue Grass state. It was created in 1969 with the merger of two municipalities.

Milwaukee skyline.

5. Wisconsin

Adjusted Mean Salary: $55,847

Below National Mean: $25,213

Dollar Factor: 97.3%

Best City: Whitefish

The Milwaukee suburb on the shore of Lake Michigan counts two professional sports coaches among its 14,000 residents: Jason Kidd of the Milwaukee Bucks and Craig Counsell of the Milwaukee Brewers.

Portland Rose Festival Dragon Boat Race in Tom McCall Waterfront Park. (Photo: AP)

4. Oregon

Adjusted Mean Salary: $51,120

Below National Mean: $29,940

Dollar Factor: 124.9%

Best City: West Linn

The Portland suburb of 25,000 is named for a U.S. senator who advocated occupying the territory to counter a claim by Britain.

Skier on the slopes at a Killington Resort. (Photo: AP)

3. Vermont

Adjusted Mean Salary: $46,999

Above National Mean: $34,601

Dollar Factor: 120.3%

Best City: Norwich

Across the Connecticut River from Hanover, New Hampshire, the town of about 3,500 was once home to a namesake university founded by Alden Partridge, a onetime leader of West Point.

A worker at the Fenton Art Glass factory in Williamstown. (Photo: AP)

2. West Virginia

Mean Salary: $46,215

Below National Mean: $34,845

Dollar Factor: 102.0%

Best City: Williamstown

The town of about 3,000 in the Parkersburg area is home to the Fenton Art Glass Co., the largest maker of handmade glass in the U.S.

Waikiki shoreline in Honolulu.

1. Hawaii

Adjusted Mean Salary: $43,144

Below National Mean: $37,916

Dollar Factor: 163.8%

Best City: East Honolulu

It’s not hard to envision the beautiful views that the nearly 50,000 residents enjoy, not to mention the perfect weather, just find a way to live on a lot less.

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