25 of the Cheapest Places to Live in Florida for 2024

Florida is one of the best places to settle in the United States of America. This sunny state is home to the best beaches and several fun places for everyone. But not all cities there are inexpensive. So which places have the cheapest cost of living in Florida?

Getting an affordable city is a great option when choosing a place to live. Many people love Florida because it does not have a state income tax.

This guide will examine the parts of Florida with the cheapest cost of living. Individuals who are on a tight budget or just looking for a quiet place to live while enjoying the beauty of nature can opt for any of the places on this list.

Let us dive in!

Florida cost of living lg

Now let’s review the . . . 

Cheapest Places to live in Florida

Number 25 – Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach is easily the world’s best beach. This city is located in Northeastern Florida on its Atlantic coast, with a population of about 70,617. Additionally, the average cost of living is 6% lower than the national average.

If you are looking to settle in an area with easy access to beautiful beaches, excellent water views, and plenty of sunshine, then Daytona Beach is the place for you.

In addition, there are many job opportunities: racing, manufacturing, logistics, etc. Furthermore, the Museum of Arts and Sciences is home to global arts and artifacts that depict the history of Florida. Finally, you can visit Tonka State Park if you want to connect with nature.

Fort Meyers Beach

Number 24- Fort Myers

Fort Myers is home to about 101,725 people. The average cost of living is lower than the national value by 4%. Therefore, this is an excellent option for people looking for a great place to retire.

An exciting feature of Fort Myers is its historical museum and sites. Irrespective of the time of the year, there is always a fun activity in this town. In addition, people living in Fort Myers have access to schools, hospitals, and job opportunities.

Furthermore, Fort Myers is ranked 8th safest place to live in Florida. The fascinating things to indulge in include sunbathing, water sports, swimming, restaurants, and street performers. Suppose you are a fan of nature, then you would love to visit the National Wildlife Refuge and Lovers Key State Park.

Number 23- Tallahassee

Tallahassee is the capital of Florida, with a population estimated at 198,758. This southern metro area is arguably the hilliest region in Florida. However, housing in Tallahassee is very affordable.

Tallahassee attracts numerous students as it is home to Florida State University and Florida A&M University. In addition, community amenities like healthcare, education, utilities, and trade are available for residents and tourists. The city is constantly growing; therefore, unemployment is lesser than in other parts of the United States.

In addition, the Tallahassee Antique Car Museum is a tourist attraction center. The Lake Jackson Mounds Archaeological State Park and a wildlife refuge center are also there.

Tallahassee is a cool place for students, those looking for good jobs, and retirees that seek to enjoy a quality life.

Number 22 – Sunset

Sunset Town is arguably the cheapest part of Fort Lauderdale. This town has an estimated population of 15,871 in 2022. In addition, the cost of transportation is lesser than in other cities of Florida and the United States. The cost of healthcare is also lesser than the national value.

There is also the Sprouts Farmers Market for individuals who want organic products. Looking for a place to hike? You can try the Tropical Park, Kendall Indian Hammocks Park, Snapper Creek Park, Cherry Grove Park, and Blue Lakes Park.

Additionally, if you have a thing for the Arts, you can visit the nearby museums.

Number 21- Winter Haven

Winter Haven is a city with a population of 50,898. It is located 46 miles outside Orlando. The overall cost of living in Winter Haven is lower than in Florida and the United States of America. Theme parks like LEGOLAND’s Florida Resort charm attract numerous tourists every year.

Students have access to prestigious schools like Polk State College, Florida Southern College, and Southeastern University. Individuals choose Winter Haven for its lakes, waterfront, and standard public schools.

The BayCare Health System in Winter Haven allows residents and tourists to access good health practitioners.

In addition, Winter Haven has one of the best community theatres in the United States. Furthermore, residents can indulge in fishing and water skiing as recreational activities.

Number 20- Lakeland

Lakeland is situated between Tampa and Orlando and has a population of about 117,281. One of the reasons you can opt to settle here is that business is great, and the cost of living is affordable. In addition, students can harness the affordability to get an education at the Florida Southern College and Southeastern University.

Lakeland is known for holding the most Frank Lloyd Wright architecture worldwide. As the name describes, it is a land of lakes, holding about 38 lakes within the city. However, the city is not all lakes; the Circle B Bar Reserve is there.

In addition, other cool places include Safari Wilderness, Hollis Garden, and the Polk Museum, which houses pre-Columbian artifacts and many more.

Number 19- Jacksonville

The city of Jacksonville is a part of Northern Florida. It has a population of about 976,295 people.

The University of North Florida attracts several college students who want to balance education and fun. Jacksonville is also home to seven state parks, a national park, and City Greenspace.

In addition, Jacksonville serves as a base for various military facilities like Naval Air Station, Blount Island Command, Naval Station May Port. There are also military job opportunities at the U.S Coast Guard and Florida Air National Guard.

Other fascinating places include Jacksonville Zoo and Gardens, the Cummer Museum of Arts and Garden, Big Talbot, and of course, beaches that are easily accessible.

Number 18- Sanford

Sanford is popularly known as the Historic waterfront Gateway City. It is one of the oldest and cheapest places to settle in Florida. The population is about 65,000—a fantastic city with nineteenth-century Victorian homes, fascinating oak trees, and brick-lined streets.

Sanford is located in central Florida. Therefore, it is not lacking social amenities like schools, restaurants, grocery stores, and many more. Furthermore, there is an inflow of students thanks to the Seminole State College of Florida, the University of Central Florida, and Deloitte. The Orlando Sanford International Airport is also located here.

A significant tourist attraction of Sanford is Disney World. In addition, the Black Bear Wilderness area gives nature lovers a place to enjoy their time. Finally, an exciting way to spend a leisure day is to visit the Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens.

Number 17- Gainesville

Gainesville is very popular probably because it is home to the prestigious University of Florida. The population is estimated to be about 134,993. Real estate agents make lots of money from housing in this city. It also has this laid-up vibe, making it a good place for retirees.

In addition, Gainesville is a city of live music, fine wine, breweries, and cocktail lounges. Many families choose to settle here because it is safe, affordable, has a low cost of living, and quality education.

The Ham Museum of Art and the Florida Museum of Natural History Exhibits are Gainesville’s notable cultural features. Parks, gardens, eateries, and pubs are other fun places to visit in Gainesville.

Number 16- Pensacola

Pensacola has a population of 53,989. It is known as the city of Five Flags, named after the governments that have ruled it. They include France, the Confederate States of America, Britain, Spain, and the United States of America. The property tax rate is lower than the national value.

In addition, Pensacola is described as the Cradle of Naval Aviation. Consequently, this city pulls in job seekers and military personnel looking for a job. Pensacola is safe and one of the cheapest cities in Florida. The majority of the businesses here are military or defense-related. Pensacola is home to several military bases like the Air Station Whiting Field, Pensacola Naval Air Station, Eglin Air Force Base, etc.

Other cool places include the Pensacola Lighthouse and maritime Museum, wildlife, campsites, and Nature Preserve.

Number 15- Cape Coral

Cape Coral holds a population of about 203,930. Cape Coral is known for its golf course, 400 miles of canal, public yacht club, and shopping spots.

The cost of living is relatively low, making it a great location to settle in Florida. Cape Coral is one of the affordable cities to bask in the Sunset, go fishing, and play water games. In addition, you can take an evening walk on the beach or along the piers to let go of all the stress and breath in the clean, fresh air.

You can always order drinks from the Wicked Dolphin Rum Distillery. Other fascinating stops include the Yacht Club Public Beach, Harbour View Gallary, and Sun Splash Family Waterpark.

Number 14- Palm Coast

Palm Coast is located on the East Coast of Florida, just an hour south of Jacksonville. The cost of living in Palm Coast is 4% lesser than the national average. The city has an estimated population of about 96,220.

Palm Coast is a safe city to live in with very low crime rates. Public and private schools are available on the Coast. The University of North Florida is less than an hour from here as well.

Despite the large population, there are clean beaches on the Coast. Older adults who enjoy golfing can spend their time at the Palm Harbour Golf Club. Finally, there are several parks and natural sights to explore on Palm Coast.

Number 13- Palm Bay

Palm Bay is situated in Central Florida, with a population of 120,646. The cost of living in this bay is 11% less than the national average. The average home price is $74,800.

In the center of Palm Bay is the Eastern Florida State College. Palm Bay has excellent educational and health care infrastructures. In addition, the crime rate is lower than the national average. Therefore, Palm Bay is a safe place to live.

Palm Bay is about an hour from Orlando. Fred Poppe Regional Park, Turkey Creek Sanctuary, offers great natural views. Just outside of Palm Bay is Andretti Thrill Park, which promises great fun, games, and food. It is ideal for a weekend family get-away.

Number 12- Fort Meade

Fort Meade is a city situated in Polk County with a population of 6,437. The crime rate is low, making it a wonderful place for families to settle.

Housing in Fort Meade is fair. Residents also have access to affordable healthcare and grocery. Although there are not many shopping spots in Fort Meade, you can go to nearby towns to get what you need.

The Fort Meade Historical Society building is a tourist attraction center. There are also plenty of fun outdoor activities like kayaking and canoeing. If you are looking for an affordable, friendly community, you should consider Fort Meade.

Number 11- St. Petersburg

Saint Petersburg is a west-central city in Florida with an average population of 264,404. The cost of living in St. Petersburg is 7% lower than the national average. In addition, the unemployment rate is 4.6%, which is lower than the national rate.

For students who are passionate about the arts, St Petersburg is home to Ecker College. There is also St. Petersburg College that offers admission to a large number of students. Furthermore, the University of South Florida has one campus in St. Petersburg. It is one of the cheapest places in Florida, irrespective of being one of the major metropolitan areas.

St. Petersburg promises fun all around the year for Florida residents and tourists. It is home to the Fred Marquis Pinellas Trail, Salvador Dali Museum, great beaches, and restaurants.

Number 10- Fort Walton Beach

Fort Walton Beach is a city in the Florida panhandle, on the west coast of Florida. It has a population of 23,379. The cost of living and housing is lower than the U.S national value. Fort Walton Beach is a relatively safe city.

In addition, Fort Walton is home to beautiful beaches. Two Air Force bases are located here, so this city sees many military retirees.

Fort Walton Beach offers numerous water sports, including Eco Jet-Ski Adventure Tour, Fort Walton Beach Parasailing, and others. In addition, it is home to cultural centers like the Indian Temple Mound and Museum, Wat Mongkolratanaram Buddhist Temple, and the City of Fort Walton Beach Heritage Park.

Number 9- Vero Beach

Vero Beach has a population of about 18,406. Housing in Vero Beach is 19% lower than the national average. Therefore, it is an affordable option in terms of cost of living and housing.

The Vero Beach Wine and Film Festival is an annual visit that attracts tourists because of its diverse and fun activities. Additionally, the warm weather makes Vero Beach a great location for vacation.

Other fascinating places include the McKee Botanical Garden, McLarty Treasure Museum, Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge, Riverside Theatre, Sandridge Golf Club, and Crab Stop.

Number 8- Edgewater

Edgewater is a city in Volusia County adjacent to the Mosquito Lagoon. It has a population of 24,464. Edgewater has a very friendly neighborhood, and it is safe. The cost of living in Edgewater is 6% lower than the national average value. Housing, healthcare, and utility also cost less here.

The rate of violent crimes in Edgewater is one of the lowest in Florida. As a result, it has amazing job opportunities. There are about 20 colleges within 50 miles of Edgewater.

Fun places in Edgewater include Smyrna Dunes Park, Mary McLeod Bethune Beach Park, Sugar Mills Ruins Travel Park, Lake Ashby Park, and many others.

Number 7- Homosassa Springs

Homosassa Springs is a city situated in Citrus County with a population of 13,478. The cost of living here is 15% lower than the national average. Therefore, Homosassa Springs is a great choice if you need affordable housing outside the metro areas.

The College of Central Florida Citrus Campus is close to Homosassa Springs. The nearest medical facility is the Bayfront Health Seven Rivers which is 20 minutes north of Homosassa Springs.

The Homosassa River is an excellent spot for recreational activities. It is home to dolphins, turtles, alligators, and other aquatic animals. In addition, Homosassa Springs has many restaurants with various cuisines for everyone.

Number 6- New Port Richey

New Port Richey is located in Pasco County. It is home to about 17,490 people. The cost of living here is 8% lower than the national average. Housing, utilities, and health are cheap and affordable.

The rate of violent crime is higher than Florida’s average. However, two medical facilities- the Morton Plant North Bay Hospital and Medical Center of Trinity are functional in the city. Additionally, one of Keiser University’s campuses is situated here.

Other cool spots include the West Pasco Historical Society, Robert K. Rees Memorial Park, and several lovely beaches.

Number 5- Dade City

Dade City is the county seat of Pasco County. It holds a population of 7,656. The cost of living is 13% lower than the national value. Additionally, buying or renting homes is affordable in Dade City- about 43% lower than the national average.

The closest public university to Dade City is located in Tampa- The University of South Florida is a 40 minutes drive. Dade City has a medical center for its populace. However, some people prefer to drive to bigger cities.

The Dade City Heritage and Cultural Museum is a fun place to learn the history of Florida. Families can spend quality time at The Dade City Giraffe Ranch. Additionally, Dade City is home to various antique stores.

Number 4- Live Oak

Live Oak is a city in Suwannee County. It has a culturally diverse population of 7,032. It is one of the Florida cities with a suburban feel that makes it a great place to retire. The cost of housing, grocery, and overall cost of living is lower than most other parts of Florida and the United States. The median home value is $88,700, which is easily the lowest cost of housing available.

Fun places for hiking include the Suwannee River State Park and Wes Skiles Peacock Springs State Park. Gan Eden Farms, Mystic Jungle Educational Facility Inc., Dragonfly Ranch are cool places for animal lovers. The crime rate is also lower than in other big cities of Florida.

Number 3- Kissimmee

Kissimmee is situated south of Orlando, with a population of about 79,226. The cost of living in Kissimmee is about 10% lower than the national average. However, the cost of housing is slightly expensive.

Kissimmee is not a college town. However, the University of Central Florida, Valencia College, and Florida International College are nearby options for residents of Kissimmee. The rate of violent crimes in Kissimmee is higher than the national average. Excellent medical facilities are available for residents and tourists.

Residents of Kissimmee can always visit Sea World, Universal Studios, and Disney World for the weekend. They are less than an hour’s drive from Kissimmee. In addition, nature lovers can explore the Florida Trail Kissimmee Trailhead.

Number 2- Quincy

Quincy is a small town with a population of 5,627. It is a beautiful city about 30miles from Tallahassee. It is more affordable than major cities in Florida for housing, transportation, grocery, utility, and overall cost of living. The median home price in Quincy is $91,900.

The downtown area of Quincy is home to many historic buildings, shops, and restaurants. Quincy is a great choice for retirees and their families to settle down. Quincy is home to the Gadsden Arts Centre, Golf Club of Quincy, Leaf Theater, and North Florida Research and Education Center.

Number 1- Bartow

Bartow has an estimated population of 20,978. It is situated southeast of Lakeland. The cost of living is about 16% less than the United States national average. Also, the cost of housing, either purchasing or renting, is pretty affordable. Therefore, it is one of the cheapest places in Florida.

Although there are no universities or colleges in Bartow, South Florida State College and the University of South Florida are very close alternatives. In addition, there is a medical facility in Bartow.

The Polk County History Center is open for those interested in History. Bartow is home to the yearly SyFy Saturday event, where people come dressed as their favorite characters. In addition, the Bartow’s Arts Festival is an annual event held in the first week of March.


Florida is an amazing place for families of different ages and backgrounds. The sunshine state has numerous beaches to cool off when you need it. There are also quite some places, as we have listed above, that are very affordable.

Of course, living in Florida is best enjoyed when you have financial freedom. You can read a recent article on how financial freedom can be achieved.

Just click the link to read it on my site.

Frequently Asked Questions

What part of Florida is the cheapest to live?

The cheapest areas to live in Florida are primarily in the north. Pensacola and Gainesville, for instance, offer lower housing costs than southern cities like Miami.

Northern Florida also tends to have more affordable groceries, healthcare, utilities, and transportation. Tallahassee, the state capital, is noted for its low cost of living and amenities like quality education, parks, and museums.

For beach lovers, Palm Coast on the eastern coast provides affordable living with recreational activities, contrasting with pricier locations like West Palm Beach.

What is the cheapest and safest place to live in Florida?

The cheapest and safest places to live in Florida include Punta Gorda, Sebring, and Palatka.

Punta Gorda offers a small-town feel with lower-than-average home values and a low crime rate. Sebring in Highlands County also boasts a low cost of living and lower crime rates, complemented by a historic downtown with shops, galleries, and restaurants.

Palatka in Putnam County is known for its peaceful surroundings and safety measures, providing affordable living with a tranquil atmosphere.

These cities represent ideal choices for affordable and secure living in Florida.

Why is Cape Coral Florida so cheap?

Cape Coral, Florida, is known for its low cost of living due to several factors.

Housing costs are lower than in other parts of Florida and the U.S., offering a range of affordable options from modest homes to luxurious waterfront properties. Utilities and services in the city are relatively inexpensive compared to most American cities, contributing to lower living expenses.

Additionally, Florida’s lack of state income tax significantly reduces overall costs for residents.

Groceries and healthcare are generally cheaper in Cape Coral, with abundant local produce and competitive healthcare institutions keeping prices down. These elements combine to make Cape Coral an affordable yet attractive location.

Is Cape Coral or Fort Myers more expensive?

Cape Coral typically offers lower living costs than Fort Myers, mainly due to cheaper housing.

In contrast, Fort Myers has slightly lower grocery and healthcare costs. This difference means Cape Coral is more affordable for housing, while Fort Myers may save money in other areas.

Choosing between the two depends on individual financial priorities and lifestyle needs.

To live comfortably in Fort Myers, you might need around $50,000 to $60,000 annually. This amount accounts for the city’s higher living costs due to its popularity.

Housing is the main expense. Median home prices are around $200,000, with typical rent for a one-bedroom apartment at about $1,000 per month.

Groceries and healthcare costs in Fort Myers are generally average compared to national standards. Personal spending habits and debts will affect how far your salary stretches.

Remember, Florida has no state income tax, which can increase your disposable income. However, your lifestyle, family size, and financial goals are key in determining if this salary is adequate.

Is 50k enough to live in Florida?

A $50,000 salary in Florida can be sufficient for a comfortable life, especially for individuals leading a frugal lifestyle. In affordable regions, this income can comfortably cover rent and living costs for a single-bedroom apartment.

However, adding a family and expenses like childcare or health insurance can tighten the budget significantly. Lifestyle sacrifices may be necessary.

Cost of living varies across Florida. This salary is more feasible in smaller towns like Pensacola or Gainesville, but less so in expensive cities like Miami.

Florida’s lack of income tax gives residents more financial flexibility. Living on $50k in Florida is possible, but depends on lifestyle choices and location.

Effective financial planning and budgeting can further stretch this income, even allowing for savings. The adequacy of this salary depends largely on personal financial needs and living preferences.

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