The 10 Most Expensive Places To Live In Virginia For 2022


We used science and data to determine which cities in Virginia that will put a big dent in your wallet.

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

Everyone wants a home that mixes affordability with comfort and Virginia does this very well. Families love the Old Dominion's beaches, midlands, and mountains as tourists before moving here and calling it home.

But before you decide to relocate, you have to do some research into the exact cost of living around the state -- and that's how we're going to help you.

These are the places in Virginia that cost a pretty penny -- the most expensive cities in the state.

After we saved up for months and could finally afford it, we landed on this list of the ten most expensive cities in Virginia for 2022.

So where is the most expensive place to live in Virginia? That would be Blacksburg.
the 2016-2020 American Community Survey for the 61 places in Virginia with more than 5,000 people.

Here are the 10 most expensive places to live in Virginia for 2022:

  1. Blacksburg
  2. Williamsburg
  3. Charlottesville
  4. Fredericksburg
  5. Richmond
  6. Alexandria
  7. Warrenton
  8. Farmville
  9. Fairfax
  10. Manassas Park

What's the most expensive place to live in Virginia? Well, HomeSnacks crunched the numbers and discovered that Blacksburg is the most expensive place to live in Virginia.

So hopefully Pulaski (the cheapest place to live in Virginia) can show these guys how to live on a budget in the coming years. Read on for how these places had costs rise faster than inflation.

And if you already knew these places were expensive, check out some more reading about Virginia and the most expensive cities in the country:

The 10 Most Expensive Places To Live In Virginia For 2022

1. Blacksburg

Blacksburg, VA

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 44,395
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 7.4x (most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 36.6x (most expensive)
More on Blacksburg: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Blacksburg comes in at $41,711 and the median home value is $309,800 for 2022.

2. Williamsburg

Williamsburg, VA

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 15,034
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 5.6x (3rd most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 51.4x (19th most expensive)
More on Williamsburg: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Williamsburg comes in at $59,288 and the median home value is $334,100 for 2022.

3. Charlottesville

Charlottesville, VA

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 47,217
Rank Last Year: 5 (Up 3)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 5.5x (5th most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 50.2x (16th most expensive)
More on Charlottesville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Charlottesville comes in at $59,598 and the median home value is $329,100 for 2022.

4. Fredericksburg

Fredericksburg, VA

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 29,059
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 5.4x (7th most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 54.0x (26th most expensive)
More on Fredericksburg: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Fredericksburg comes in at $69,528 and the median home value is $376,700 for 2022.

5. Richmond

Richmond, VA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 229,233
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 4.7x (10th most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 48.1x (10th most expensive)
More on Richmond: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Richmond comes in at $51,421 and the median home value is $244,200 for 2022.

6. Alexandria

Alexandria, VA

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 158,309
Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 5.6x (4th most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 57.6x (36th most expensive)
More on Alexandria: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Alexandria comes in at $102,227 and the median home value is $572,700 for 2022.

7. Warrenton

Warrenton, VA

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 9,928
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 4)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 4.6x (13th most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 53.2x (22nd most expensive)
More on Warrenton: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Warrenton comes in at $74,003 and the median home value is $337,000 for 2022.

8. Farmville

Farmville, VA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 8,152
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 5.9x (2nd most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 49.2x (14th most expensive)
More on Farmville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Farmville comes in at $33,133 and the median home value is $194,000 for 2022.

9. Fairfax

Fairfax, VA

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 23,312
Rank Last Year: 14 (Up 6)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 5.4x (8th most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 60.2x (4most expensive)
More on Fairfax: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Fairfax comes in at $109,708 and the median home value is $587,000 for 2022.

10. Manassas Park

Manassas Park, VA

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 17,548
Rank Last Year: 15 (Up 5)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 3.7x (30th most expensive)
Income To Rent Ratio: 47.8x (9th most expensive)
More on Manassas Park: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The median income in Manassas Park comes in at $81,639 and the median home value is $299,700 for 2022.

Methodology: How We Determined The Most Expensive Places To Live In The Old Dominion For 2022

Map Of The Cheapest Places To Live In Virginia
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 Virginia to figure out which is the most 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 61 places in Virginia that have more than 5,000 people.

The place with the highest cost of living in Virginia according to the data is Blacksburg. You can download the data here.

Summary: Taking A Chunk Out Of Your Paycheck In Virginia For 2022

Well there you have it, the places in Virginia that have the highest cost of living, with Blacksburg ranking as the most expensive city in the Old Dominion.

Here's a look at the most affordable cities in Virginia according to the data:

  1. Pulaski
  2. Vinton
  3. Galax

For more Virginia reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Most Expensive Cities In Virginia

Rank City ExpensiveScore Population Home/Income Ratio Income/Rent Ratio
1 Blacksburg 5.33 44,395 7.4x 36.6x
2 Williamsburg 11.33 15,034 5.6x 51.4x
3 Charlottesville 11.33 47,217 5.5x 50.2x
4 Fredericksburg 13.67 29,059 5.4x 54.0x
5 Richmond 14.33 229,233 4.7x 48.1x
6 Alexandria 14.67 158,309 5.6x 57.6x
7 Warrenton 15.33 9,928 4.6x 53.2x
8 Farmville 17.33 8,152 5.9x 49.2x
9 Fairfax 17.33 23,312 5.4x 60.2x
10 Manassas Park 18.0 17,548 3.7x 47.8x
11 Radford 19.0 17,833 4.9x 41.2x
12 Front Royal 20.33 15,214 4.4x 53.1x
13 Strasburg 20.33 6,643 4.1x 49.1x
14 Falls Church 21.0 14,309 5.5x 71.9x
15 Harrisonburg 21.33 53,558 4.5x 53.9x
16 Lexington 21.33 7,205 4.6x 55.4x
17 Norfolk 21.33 244,300 4.1x 49.2x
18 Manassas 21.67 41,038 3.9x 55.7x
19 Herndon 22.33 24,577 4.1x 61.6x
20 Vienna 24.33 16,532 4.6x 75.3x
21 Winchester 25.33 27,912 4.1x 55.8x
22 Virginia Beach 26.33 450,882 3.7x 56.6x
23 Emporia 26.67 5,408 4.0x 39.8x
24 Waynesboro 27.33 22,300 4.2x 55.0x
25 Dumfries 28.33 5,559 3.1x 40.6x
26 Culpeper 28.33 18,633 3.9x 59.7x
27 Ashland 28.33 7,819 3.7x 51.6x
28 Leesburg 28.67 53,731 4.0x 69.1x
29 Newport News 28.67 179,582 3.6x 50.7x
30 Bridgewater 30.33 6,090 4.1x 66.4x
31 Marion 32.0 5,646 3.8x 48.9x
32 Hampton 32.67 135,169 3.3x 51.2x
33 Buena Vista 32.67 6,477 3.4x 42.1x
34 Portsmouth 33.0 94,961 3.3x 49.1x
35 Chesapeake 33.67 242,647 3.5x 62.5x
36 Purcellville 33.67 10,063 3.6x 76.1x
37 Poquoson 35.67 12,121 3.4x 72.8x
38 Richlands 36.33 5,311 3.2x 39.7x
39 Suffolk 36.33 91,383 3.3x 64.9x
40 Franklin 37.5 8,015 3.6x 59.8x
41 Smithfield 38.0 8,492 3.6x 84.4x
42 Hopewell 38.33 22,500 2.9x 47.0x
43 Wytheville 40.0 7,925 4.1x 68.3x
44 Petersburg 40.33 30,791 2.6x 44.9x
45 Lynchburg 40.67 80,970 3.3x 57.3x
46 Woodstock 41.33 5,247 3.4x 75.8x
47 Abingdon 42.0 7,936 3.6x 66.4x
48 Bristol 42.33 17,059 3.2x 55.7x
49 Staunton 42.67 24,660 3.3x 60.5x
50 Colonial Heights 43.17 17,283 3.0x 58.5x
51 South Boston 45.0 7,676 3.2x 59.7x
52 Roanoke 45.33 99,122 3.0x 56.8x
53 Salem 45.33 25,290 3.2x 68.5x
54 Christiansburg 45.67 22,482 3.1x 67.3x
55 Danville 47.67 40,668 2.6x 54.0x
56 Big Stone Gap 49.0 5,209 3.2x 63.0x
57 Covington 49.33 5,653 1.7x 54.0x
58 Martinsville 49.67 12,646 2.2x 54.5x
59 Galax 53.33 6,402 2.8x 61.6x
60 Vinton 53.33 8,102 2.8x 71.9x
61 Pulaski 54.67 8,744 2.2x 65.1x

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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.