The 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Alabama For 2022

We used data and science to determine which places in Alabama go easy on your wallet.

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Alabama is home to Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores, the USS Alabama in Mobile, and the US Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, but did you know that the Heart of Dixie is also home to some of the most affordable places in the country?

The experts say that the cost of living is on the rise, so HomeSnacks thought it would be a great idea to give Alabamans one of the best life hacks: we compiled a list of the most affordable places to live in Alabama for 2022.

How did we determine the most affordable places to live in Alabama for 2022? We consulted the latest Census data on cost of living.

It simple economics, folks. The folks in our most affordable Alabama places know that the less they spend on their cost of living, the more they have to spend on the fun things that Alabama has to offer. Like, swamp boat tours in Spanish Fort, the Birmingham Zoo, or Alabama Adventure & Splash Adventure in Bessemer. you know, great, affordable Alabama staycations. Do we think it’s a coincidence that several of our top ten best places in Alabama to retire are also on our most affordable list? Absolutely not. The good ‘ol Alabamans that live in these places know the value of the Alabama dollar.

So, want to know where you can find a safe, affordable Alabama home? Keep reading.

The 10 Most Affordable Places To Live In Alabama

  1. Attalla
  2. Russellville
  3. Brewton
  4. Valley
  5. Oxford
  6. Hamilton
  7. Satsuma
  8. Boaz
  9. Lincoln
  10. Albertville

To produce a comprehensive list of the most affordable places in Alabama for 2022, we took a look at the things that matter: low cost of living, blue ribbon schools, and an above average employment rate to name a few.

The cheapest place to live in Alabama? Drum roll… the number one most affordable place to live in Alabama is Attalla.

If you’re already in one of the most affordable Alabama places we’re about to highlight, odds are you don’t want to go anywhere. You should, however, scroll on down and see how your city compared.

And if you already knew these places were cheap, check out some more reading about Alabama and the cheapest places in the country:

The 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Alabama For 2022

Alabama’s most affordable place to live for 2022 is Attalla. Also, fun fact, Attalla is one of the city’s that made this list that is located closest to an airport.

Why is that a fun fact? Because when you save a bunch of money on your home purchase, you can use that money to purchase a private jet and leave it at the The Northeast Alabama Regional Airport.

Attalla is the third cheapest place to buy a home relative to its median income in the state and offers an oveall cost of living well below the national, and state, average.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 5,885
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.2x (3rd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 79.4x (47th cheapest)
More On Attalla: Real Estate | Cost Of Living

Attalla, AL

Where Alabama’s HWY 43 crosses HWY 24 is the second cheapest place to live in The Yellowhammer State. The beauty of Russellville is that it is the fifth most affordable place to buy a home or rent based on the median income at $44,674 for this area. So, if you’re not sure if buying a home, let alone living, in this little city in Franklin County, you can try it out with a rental.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 9,803
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.2x (5th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 72.2x (38th cheapest)
More On Russellville: Real Estate | Cost Of Living

Russellville, AL

Brewton is a city in Escambia County, Alabama, United States. At the 2010 census, the population was 5,408. The city is the county seat of Escambia County. Brewton is located in south central Alabama, just north of the Florida Panhandle. Brewton has been voted one of the 100 best small towns in America.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 5,210
Rank Last Year: 18 (Up 15)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.5x (27th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 79.5x (77th cheapest)
More On Brewton: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Brewton, AL

As an official town, Valley has only existed for a relatively short period of time. It was first incorporated in 1980, a merger of a set of smaller communities. The area has gained a major distinction in its short time: it ranks as the number 4 most affordable city in the state.

Valley sits along the Chattahoochee River, right at the border with Georgia. This gives residents access to loads of scenic outdoors activities around nearby West Point Lake. With a population of 9,195 residents, Valley exists in a relatively rural part of the state. It takes more than an hour to get either to the state capital of Montgomery or to Atlanta, the nearest major metropolis.

This small-town, outdoorsy charm helps to keep expenses in the community under control. The median income in the area only comes in at $50,445. But those dollars go a long way. The median home value is an affordable $91,300, while the median rent hovers at $821 per month. Meanwhile, the overall cost of living is only about 80% of the national average.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 9,195
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 2)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.8x (most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 61.4x (23rd cheapest)
More On Valley: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Valley, AL

Source: Public domain

Oxford is a city in Calhoun and Talladega counties in the State of Alabama. The population was 21,348 at the 2010 census, an increase of 46.3% since the 2000 Census. Oxford is one of two principal cities of and included in the Anniston-Oxford Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 21,282
Rank Last Year: 28 (Up 23)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.2x (9th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 78.3x (27th cheapest)
More On Oxford: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Oxford, AL

For many, Hamilton’s claim to fame is that they are the home to the former Minnesota Vikings lineman Bookie Bolin; but, for HomeSnacks, this city of 6,662 in Marion County is the sixth best place in Alabama if you are looking for affordable living.

Yes, the median income in Hamilton is $38,613 and the median home price is $101,400; so, for all of the economically savvy out there, we’re pretty sure we can agree that this a Hamilton win.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,662
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 4)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.6x (38th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 77.8x (4cheapest)
More On Hamilton: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Hamilton, AL

Satsuma is a city in Mobile County, Alabama, United States. At the 2000 census the population was 5,687. Known prior to 1915 as Fig Tree Island, the city was named after the Satsuma orange, which was successfully cultivated and grown in Alabama starting in 1878, a gift from Emperor Meiji of Japan. Satsuma is a part of the Mobile metropolitan statistical area.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,163
Rank Last Year: 26 (Up 19)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.9x (2nd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 86.8x (59th cheapest)
More On Satsuma: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Satsuma, AL

Boaz is a city in Etowah and Marshall counties in the U.S. state of Alabama. It is part of the Gadsden, Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of the 2010 census, the population of the city was 9,551. Boaz is known mainly for its outlet shops.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 9,587
Rank Last Year: 17 (Up 9)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.6x (33rd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 75.8x (3rd cheapest)
More On Boaz: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Boaz, AL

You won’t have to sacrifice class for affordability if you choose to live in Alabama’s ninth most affordable place, Lincoln. Matter of fact, you won’t have to sacrifice anything. Lincoln is the 11th best place to buy a home based on home price to income ratio; and economically speaking, the less you have to spend on your home, the more money you will for the fun things to do in the place that wants you to “Come Grow With Them.” Like, catching a NASCAR race at the famous Talladega SuperSpeedway.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,805
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 5)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.3x (11th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 74.1x (76th cheapest)
More On Lincoln: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Lincoln, AL

Albertville is a city in Marshall County, Alabama, United States, and is included in the Huntsville-Decatur Combined Statistical Area. As of the 2010 census, the population of the city was 21,160.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 21,620
Rank Last Year: 22 (Up 12)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.5x (23rd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 74.7x (18th cheapest)
More On Albertville: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Albertville, AL

Cheapest Places To Live In Alabama FAQs

What county in Alabama has the lowest cost of living?

The county in Alabama with the lowest cost of living is DeKalb County. The average living wage in DeKalb County is $74,765 according to MIT data. DeKalb County has the lowest cost of living because it has relatively less expensive childcare and housing costs compared to Alabama as a whole. Childcare costs $8,562 a year in DeKalb County for two children compared to the Alabama average of $11,652. Housing costs, defined as a blend of the average rent and average mortgage payment, are $7,608 per year in DeKalb County compared to $9,794 on average in Alabama.

What is the cost of living in Alabama?

The cost of living in Alabama is 10.0% lower than the US average. According to MIT, the required living wage for a family of four with two working parents in Alabama is $80,777 vs the national average for a family of four with two working parents of $89,744. The median income of a Alabama household is $52,035.

What is the cheapest housing market in Alabama?

The cheapest housing market in Alabama is Prichard. The average home value in Prichard is $66,100, the lowest in the state. The average home value in Alabama is $149,600, almost 2.3 times higher than Prichard.

Methodology: How We Determined The Most Affordable Places To Live In The Heart of Dixie For 2022

Map Of The Cheapest Places To Live In Alabama
The two most important things to think about when it comes to being able to afford if you can live comes down to:

  1. How much do money do I make?
  2. How much do I have spend to live there?

You need to understand your costs in the context of how much money you make.

For example, if the median household earns $100,000 and spends $40,000 on housing it’s actually cheaper to live there than a place with a median income of $50,000 and housing costs of $21,000. You might spend more on housing, but you have more money overall to play with.

With that example in mind, we derived several statistics from the latest Census American Community Survey 2016-2020 around incomes and costs. They are:

  • Median Home Price / Median Income (lower is better)
  • Median Income / Median Rent (Higher is better)
  • Median Home Price

We added simply median home price because high home prices generally correlate with higher expenses for all costs related to homes (heating, electricity, etc).

You can then compare these metrics in each of the places in Alabama to figure out which is the least expensive.

What you are left with is a “Cost of Living Index” by taking the average rank of each of these metrics for each city.

So we used that cost of living index in order to rank all of the 103 places in Alabama that have more than 5,000 people.

The place with the lowest cost of living in Alabama according to the data is Attalla. You can download the data here.

Summary: There You Have It Mr. Or Mrs. Alabama Cheapskate

If you’re looking at the cost of living numbers in Alabama, this is an accurate list of the most affordable places to live in Alabama for 2022.

Here’s a look at the most expensive cities in Alabama according to the data:

  1. Gulf Shores
  2. Auburn
  3. Tuscaloosa

For more Alabama reading, check out:

The Most Affordable Places To Live In Alabama

Rank City CheapScore Population Home/Income Ratio Income/Rent Ratio
1 Attalla 9.0 5,885 2.2x 79.4x
2 Russellville 16.33 9,803 2.2x 72.2x
3 Brewton 20.33 5,210 2.5x 79.5x
4 Valley 22.33 9,195 1.8x 61.4x
5 Oxford 22.67 21,282 2.2x 78.3x
6 Hamilton 24.67 6,662 2.6x 77.8x
7 Satsuma 24.83 6,163 1.9x 86.8x
8 Boaz 25.33 9,587 2.6x 75.8x
9 Lincoln 28.33 6,805 2.3x 74.1x
10 Albertville 28.33 21,620 2.5x 74.7x
11 Pinson 29.5 7,108 2.2x 71.1x
12 Roanoke 31.67 5,931 2.6x 69.3x
13 Hartselle 33.67 14,421 2.6x 80.2x
14 Lanett 34.33 6,220 2.5x 59.1x
15 Southside 34.67 8,801 2.2x 73.9x
16 Scottsboro 35.33 14,452 2.8x 74.9x
17 Prichard 36.0 21,618 2.2x 37.8x
18 Gadsden 36.33 35,224 2.4x 52.8x
19 Alexander City 37.0 14,515 2.7x 68.2x
20 Center Point 38.0 15,971 2.2x 51.5x
21 Glencoe 38.67 5,125 2.7x 99.7x
22 Chickasaw 39.67 5,757 2.3x 38.8x
23 Fairfield 40.0 10,749 2.3x 51.4x
24 Fultondale 40.67 9,247 2.3x 65.9x
25 Alabaster 41.0 33,373 2.2x 70.9x
26 Hueytown 41.0 15,446 2.3x 55.2x
27 Helena 41.33 18,631 2.3x 74.9x
28 Saraland 41.33 14,561 2.6x 77.2x
29 Gardendale 41.67 14,021 2.5x 75.3x
30 Tarrant 42.67 6,216 2.5x 41.9x
31 Andalusia 42.67 8,719 2.8x 66.5x
32 Montgomery 44.33 199,054 2.4x 54.8x
33 Decatur 44.33 54,344 2.9x 71.2x
34 Trussville 44.67 22,590 2.6x 89.0x
35 Opp 44.67 6,405 2.7x 55.7x
36 Greenville 44.67 7,478 2.8x 64.0x
37 Birmingham 46.33 210,928 2.5x 44.6x
38 Semmes 46.33 5,780 3.0x 80.5x
39 Arab 46.67 8,405 3.2x 81.6x
40 Fort Payne 47.0 14,063 3.1x 71.3x
41 Moody 48.0 13,004 2.6x 70.5x
42 Clanton 48.0 8,719 2.9x 65.9x
43 Clay 48.17 9,936 2.3x 59.3x
44 Muscle Shoals 48.33 14,379 2.8x 67.5x
45 Chelsea 48.33 13,599 2.6x 75.5x
46 Tuscumbia 48.33 8,445 2.8x 58.8x
47 Daleville 48.67 5,125 2.8x 53.3x
48 Madison 49.0 50,717 2.8x 95.6x
49 Calera 49.33 14,327 2.3x 56.3x
50 Cullman 49.67 16,072 2.9x 69.7x
51 Robertsdale 49.67 6,776 2.6x 56.9x
52 Sheffield 50.0 8,925 2.7x 52.9x
53 Jasper 50.0 13,584 3.0x 77.7x
54 Talladega 50.67 15,405 2.9x 53.3x
55 Leeds 51.33 12,555 2.7x 70.2x
56 Pelham 51.33 23,707 2.5x 68.4x
57 Tuskegee 51.33 8,443 2.8x 47.9x
58 Pleasant Grove 52.0 9,625 2.5x 58.3x
59 Irondale 52.17 13,068 2.6x 59.2x
60 Ozark 52.83 14,350 3.0x 59.6x
61 Spanish Fort 53.0 8,991 2.6x 72.1x
62 Enterprise 53.33 28,170 2.8x 72.7x
63 Northport 53.67 25,970 2.9x 77.3x
64 Anniston 54.0 21,518 2.8x 56.4x
65 Athens 54.67 26,686 3.2x 80.9x
66 Opelika 55.67 30,589 3.0x 67.0x
67 Millbrook 56.33 16,037 2.8x 61.0x
68 Bay Minette 56.67 9,297 3.1x 59.4x
69 Prattville 59.0 36,599 2.6x 59.6x
70 Dothan 60.67 68,608 3.2x 63.1x
71 Pike Road 60.83 9,745 3.0x 75.4x
72 Rainsville 61.33 5,038 4.0x 69.6x
73 Hoover 61.5 85,386 3.2x 80.5x
74 Jacksonville 62.0 12,796 3.6x 65.5x
75 Eufaula 62.83 11,878 3.6x 58.1x
76 Florence 63.33 40,652 3.6x 60.7x
77 Selma 63.33 17,762 3.4x 41.2x
78 Vestavia Hills 63.67 34,482 3.4x 84.1x
79 Monroeville 64.33 5,812 3.6x 54.7x
80 Wetumpka 65.17 8,282 3.2x 57.6x
81 Guntersville 66.0 8,531 4.3x 79.6x
82 Atmore 66.33 9,269 3.8x 46.2x
83 Bessemer 66.33 26,063 3.3x 39.6x
84 Phenix City 67.0 36,461 3.1x 50.9x
85 Mobile 67.33 189,994 3.1x 49.8x
86 Mountain Brook 68.0 20,178 4.4x 93.8x
87 Demopolis 68.67 6,724 4.4x 59.8x
88 Sylacauga 69.0 12,132 3.6x 56.3x
89 Smiths Station 69.67 5,821 3.2x 57.5x
90 Pell City 69.67 14,081 3.2x 64.0x
91 Daphne 70.33 26,578 3.1x 63.1x
92 Huntsville 70.33 199,845 3.3x 65.4x
93 Rainbow City 76.0 9,601 3.4x 57.5x
94 Oneonta 77.33 6,550 4.2x 59.4x
95 Foley 78.33 19,337 4.0x 61.6x
96 Homewood 79.67 25,170 4.5x 70.0x
97 Orange Beach 80.67 6,130 4.0x 65.1x
98 Fairhope 83.0 22,035 4.0x 61.1x
99 Montevallo 83.17 6,829 4.2x 52.1x
100 Troy 89.33 18,995 4.6x 46.8x

How Is The Area In ?

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2022. This is our ninth time ranking the cheapest places to live in Alabama.

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.