How make money in Cities Skylines?

Every mayor in Cities Skylines was thinking how can I make more money from my citizens? And today I have some tips for your city to increase budgets and with money, you could build a better city.

More tax => more money

You could setups taxes from 0% to 29% in every zone which you have. There is a publicly known information that the best taxes are 13% in the long term because citizens aren’t angry and you make a lot of money. Yes, you could go up but after some days your buildings will be abandoned after time.

Cities Skyline when I have taxes on 10% – mine earnings was +14 000 ₡)

If you set taxes below 5% you could have problems with financing. So be aware that your budget doesn’t go to red numbers because that means that you lose money!

Cities Skyline when I have taxes on 12% – mine earnings was +52 000 ₡

If your tax goes down you will grow faster. If your tax goes up you will slow. When I play I set 10% taxes for everyone and when I need money I could raise taxes. So I’m always well prepared. More detailed guide about taxes in Cities Skylines I’ve wrote in separated article.

✅ I’ve recommended set taxes to 10% and in crisis going up to 12% ✅

Services budgets are key to prosperity

The second thing which has an impact on your budget is city services. You could “raise” or “reduce” the budget like taxes. But be aware these sliders do not work on the principle of direct proportionality.

So if you go from 100% to 110% isn’t the same as from 110% to 120% yes you could get more power but this isn’t efficient. The efficiency you could see on this graph:

In the early game, I’ve adjusted the budget on electricity and water when I have problems with delivery to 120% so I’ve got some time to make money to double mine infrastructure. In the super early game (when you start) you could go with the budget to 65% and go up when you get more people.

101% bonus

There is a mysterious 101%. When you set up a budget of 101% you will get one car from a specific service more. This could look “oh just one car” but when you have 4 or 5 ambulances because you have 20% more coverage. But be aware this works just for services with cars.

This information I get from official sources. I’ve tested in when I was playing Cities Skylines in last months and this works well for me. When you have more cars then they works for more buildings at one moment. So I’ve increase budget small and get big update. And it pays off.

✅ Set the budget to 101% and when you need to scale your infrastructure ✅

Don’t scale the city if you don’t need

When your city grows there are some milestones when you get some special buildings or new things which you could buy…

On this screen, my town grow to 2400 and I can buy buses but I don’t need them now.

… but you don’t need to build them. Make big investments when you need them. You could deal with one fire station or hospital. When things go wrong then you could buy more. In the early game (when you don’t have money) this is a good saving tip.

✅ This works, spend less be prepared for investing ✅

Repay your loans

In real life one thinking about how you could take a loan to boost your finance. But if you have it you must repay as you see there is a weekly cost. When you have money repay it when you will need money you could take it.

LoanSilver Sunset BankGlobal Credit Inc.Pyramid Capital
UnlockedLittle HamletWorthy VillageGrand City
Amount (₡)2060200
Payment plan52 Weeks260 Weeks520 Weeks
Weekly cost (₡)403.85253.85442.31
Total (₡)21 00066 000230 000

And if you need to take a loan its middle is the best because have the smallest weekly cost. And If you will be -10 000 ₡ you could get instant 50 000 ₡ without interest but you must repay 50 000 ₡ when you have money.

✅ This doesn’t make millions but it’s a good tip for your city. ✅

Plan how you build the basic structure

In the early game, you must plan how big services you will construct. For example, when you need electric power you have two choices about what to build.

  • A wind turbine provides you 8 MW for 6 000 ₡ with an upkeep of 80 ₡.
  • The coal plant provides you 50 MW for 19 000 ₡ and upkeep 560 ₡.

The mathematics when you compare two buildings is clear. Wind turbines are cheaper. But when you need the same MW output coal plant wins! But in graphs, you could see that coal plant price grows faster than wind turbine…

… so there is a graph of how the cost of electricity grows in Cities Skylines when you need every 20 weeks to build 50 MW of capacity.

Power in Cities Skylines could be tricky So we created big FAQ guide in which you should find responses for all main questions which you ever had about power in Cities Skylines 1.

On top graphs there you could see that you must do bigger investments when you use wind turbines. And yes this is details but when you want to earn money faster you must think. In Cities Skylines are more details (water, parks,…) with which you could calculate.

✅ Watch what you build ✅

Tips to solve problems in Cities Skylines

Hardest problems guides not enough customers and not enough goods to sell

Complicated problems could be also with overeducated workers which cause abandoned buildings

How to make money in Cities Skylines and how to get out of debt quickly

Tips to increasing population and understanding how increase residential demand

What is land value and why you need to focus to get happy citizens

To play on bigger map you need unlock more tiles and inside I show how to use full maps

Also you should have problems with power outages and with traffic with which we could also help

About article
Current version of the game doesn't affect the article.
Author hours in Cities Skylines: 176
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I'm Martin, the main creator of this site. I love city builders, transport, and war strategy games. So I create this site to share my love with others! Let's make Tycoon games great again!