11 Cheapest Places to Live in Florida

By PropertyClub Team
May 11th 2024
Florida is a massive state, and many people flock to towns like Orlando or Boca Raton when moving there. These cities can be expensive. However, there are plenty of affordable places to live in Florida that offer the safety and amenities of a more expensive location. Read on to discover the eleven most affordable places to live in Florida.

hash-markKey Findings

  • The most affordable place to live in Florida is Bartow, which has a cost of living that is 11% lower than the state average and a median home price of $259,000.
  • The second cheapest city in Florida is Dade City thanks to its extremely affordable housing prices. The median selling price of a home in Dade City is only $265,000, while the average one bedroom apartment rents for $1,140 per month. 
  • Compared to other states, the cost of living in Florida is moderate, coming in at 3% below the national average. 

hash-mark11 Cheapest Places to Live in Florida (2024)

  1. Bartow
  2. Dade City
  3. Homosassa Springs
  4. Jacksonville
  5. Gainesville
  6. Edgewater
  7. Dunedin
  8. Kissimmee
  9. Leesburg
  10. Melbourne
  11. Cape Coral

hash-mark1. Bartow

The cheapest place to live in Florida is Bartow, which is located in central Florida, within about fifty miles of Orlando and Tampa. The median cost of a home in Bartow is about $259,000. You can expect to pay about $1,050 for a one-bedroom apartment in Bartow, significantly below the national and Florida average. 

Most people own their homes in Bartow, and there’s a thriving job market in the area thanks to its proximity to larger nearby cities.  Bartow benefits from a quiet location conveniently situated in Polk County. It's also simple to commute to work if you have a job outside Bartow.

There are lots of exciting things to see and do in Bartow. It has many historical locations filled with gorgeous architecture for those who want to appreciate beauty. It’s also close to state parks, themed places, and museums for a day of fun with the family. Bartow provides quality living for its residents.

hash-mark2. Dade City

The second most affordable place to live in Florida is Dade CityThe median cost in Dade City is about $265,000, which falls well below Florida and the national average. You can expect to pay about $1,140 for a one-bedroom apartment in the city. It’s an affordable and safe place to live.

Dade City is located about a 45 minutes north of Tampa and offers plenty of employment opportunities. It’s location is also several large universities for access to careers and further education.

There is plenty to do in Dade City. It’s close enough to commute to Orlando, and there are many national parks and trails to enjoy the outdoors. Dade City has many museums and places to eat if you want to explore the world beyond. 

hash-mark3. Homosassa Springs

Homosassa Springs is a town located just north of Tampa Bay. It’s one of the more rural selections on this list, but it’s still an excellent and affordable place to live for those who prefer a little solitude in their lives.

The median cost of a home in Homosassa Springs is about $269,000. For a one-bedroom apartment, you can expect to pay about $1,125, which is far less than the national average. It’s an affordable place to call home.

The proximity to other towns and the quiet nature of Homosassa Springs makes it one of the best affordable places to live in Florida.

There’s plenty to do for fun in Homosassa Springs. You can snorkel with gorgeous manatees or travel to Weeki Wachee Springs State Park for a world-famous mermaid show. It’s an excellent location that runs on tourism.

hash-mark4. Jacksonville

The cheapest major city to live in Florida is Jacksonville. It's also the largest city in Florida as well as being one of the largest cities in the United States by area. Jacksonville is located right at the top of the state, close to the border between Florida and Georgia. But unlike most other large cities, Jacksonville is one of the most affordable places to live if you love Florida.

The median cost of a home in Jacksonville is about $293,000, which is well below the national average. A one-bedroom apartment runs the average person around $1,140. You can expect prices lower than most places in the United States here. You can live a comfortable life for around $1,950 a month here, making Jacksonville the cheapest city in Florida. 

Jacksonville has a low unemployment rate and offers many homes to choose from, making the job hunt simple enough. It’s close to other big cities if you need to commute for work. It has one of the largest total areas of any city in the United States.

In Jacksonville, you can rest on the beach or watch a movie. It’s a family-friendly city with a zoo, excellent museums, and even a state park. Jacksonville is affordable and packed with everything you could imagine. You can hang out in the city or on the outskirts at the beach. If you're interested in moving to the city, be sure to check out our report on the safest neighborhoods in Jacksonville

hash-mark5. Gainesville

Gainesville is also one of the cheapest cities to live in Florida. It's home to two schools, the University of Florida and Santa Fe College, and is one of the larger cities in Central Florida. You can reside in a big town while accessing the cost of something smaller. 

The median cost of a home in Gainesville is about $295,000, which falls below the Florida and national averages. A one-bedroom apartment here is about $1,170. The only expensive thing in Gainesville is the cost of utilities.

The best thing about living in Gainesville right now is its job market. It’s on an exponential rise, especially within the college system. You can expect to find employment easily if you’re on the hunt for a job in the Gainesville area.

If you would like to move to Gainesville, make sure you are well-informed on Florida rent increase laws before making any decisions.

There are plenty of things to do in Gainesville. You can visit hiking trails, public parks, and lakes. Gainesville has a museum you can spend your day exploring.

hash-mark6. Edgewater

Last up is the city of Edgewater, located on the eastern coast of Florida. It’s close to Daytona Beach and Cape Canaveral. Edgewater is a quaint town that also happens to be one of the cheapest places to live in Florida.

The median price for a home in Edgewater is about $305,000. If you plan on renting, you can expect to pay about $1,240, for a one-bedroom apartment in Edgewater.

Edgewater is a convenient location for commuting to work. It has a low violent crime rate and offers plenty of job opportunities for those seeking work. It also has excellent public transportation for those who need help getting to and from locations.

Edgewater has a lot to do, whether you’re a single person or a family of five. Orlando is only an hour away, and you’ll be very close to the beach here. Edgewater is by some of the best campsites in Florida for extra fun.

hash-mark7. Dunedin

The unique town of Dunedin is also one of the most affordable places to live in Florida. Those seeking a laid-back lifestyle will adore the charming feel this city provides for its residents. It has excellent schools and a low crime rate any family will enjoy.

The median cost of a home in Dunedin is about $349,000 at the moment, but the market is constantly changing. You can expect to pay about $1,200 for a one-bedroom in Dunedin.

This town offers excellent transportation and utility costs. Almost everything here is below the Florida average, making it one of the most affordable places to live in the state.

There are plenty of things to do in Dunedin. From the white sand beaches to the extensive golf clubs, anyone can find relaxation in this idyllic town. They even have an annual Scottish Highland Games for thrill-seekers and kids.

hash-mark8. Kissimmee

Kissimmee is another one of the cheapest places to live in Florida, and it's also very close to the state's theme park hub, a stone’s throw from both Universal Studios and Disneyworld. You can enjoy living close to the Orlando attractions without stressing about pushing through Orlando traffic on a daily basis. 

The median cost of a home in Kissimmee is about $363,000. You can expect to pay about $1,250 for a one-bedroom apartment here, which is affordable for the proximity to other destinations.

If you need to work in the city, Kissimmee is an excellent place to live for commuting from work. It’s a combination of affordability and value.

There are plenty of things to do in Kissimmee. You can drive to the Orlando attractions, but you can also enjoy the fun right in this town. It’s close to the beach, and there are delicious places to grab food and enjoy a night on the town with friends or family.

hash-mark9. Leesburg

Another one of the most affordable cities in Florida is Leesburg. Nestled in the heart of Central Florida, this city of 27,800 residents exudes a distinctive charm that blends a rich historical heritage with the warmth of a close-knit community. Leesburg is known for its affordability as well as its scenic beauty, with numerous lakes dotting the landscape, offering residents plenty of outdoor recreational opportunities and picturesque views. The average rent for a 1 bedroom apartment in Leesburg is $1,290, while the median home price is $289,000.

The historic downtown area is characterized by tree-lined streets, historic architecture, and vibrant local businesses, creating a welcoming atmosphere for residents and visitors alike. Leesburg provides a unique blend of Southern hospitality and Florida's natural beauty, making it an appealing and affordable place to call home in the Sunshine State.

hash-mark10. Melbourne

Melbourne is right on the Atlantic coast, close to Cape Canaveral. It has a solid mix of annual tourists and a group of locals that resides there year-round. It generally has an older population, but younger groups have moved in over the years.

The median cost of a home in Melbourne is about $375,000. You can expect to pay about $1,360, which is relatively low for Florida. 

There are both younger and older areas in Melbourne, so you have access to multiple groups your age. It’s one of the most versatile places in Florida, on the rise in popularity.

There are lots of things to do in Melbourne. You can visit the zoo, have fun in a theme park, or take a kayak tour on the water. You’ll never run out of things to do if you decide to live in Melbourne.

hash-mark11. Cape Coral

Another one of the cheapest places to live in Florida is Cape Coral, a city located in the southwestern part of the state. It’s easily one of the most affordable places to live in Florida. It's also one of the safest cities in Florida, with one of the lowest crime rates in the state.

The median home price in Cape Coral is about $391,000, which is just below the US average. A one-bedroom apartment will cost about $1,355. There are fewer taxes in this area, so you can hang onto more of your funds. It’s an ideal location for retirees.

Cape Coral’s expenses lie in their transportation and groceries. Still, you can expect to pay less here than in most Florida towns. It’s an excellent place to live, especially if you want a chance to be right on the water.

Cape Coral is known as the “Waterfront Wonderland” thanks to its intricate system of canals, so you can be by the water whenever you want. Cape Coral is close to Disney, and there are tons of places to eat and stroll right in the city. You can even spend your days fishing if that’s something you enjoy.

hash-markCheapest Places to Live in Florida Compared

City Average Rent Median Home Price
Bartow $1,050 $259,000
Dade City $1,140 $265,000
Homosassa Springs $1,125 $271,000
Jacksonville $1,140 $293,000
Gainesville $1,170 $295,000
Edgewater $1,240 $305,000
Dunedin $1,200 $349,000
Kissimmee $1,250 $363,000
Leesburg $1,290 $289,000
Melbourne $1,360 $375,000
Cape Coral $1,355 $391,000

hash-markMethodology for Selecting the Cheapest Places to Live in Florida

To come up with our list of the cheapest places to live in Florida, we looked at housing costs as well as other living costs, including groceries, utilities, transportation, and healthcare. For housing costs, we looked at average rents and median prices of sold homes between January 1, 2023, and January 1, 2024. 

Make sure to check out our article on the most dangerous cities in Florida before settling on an area.