Cost of Living in Clearwater, FL

May 05th, 2023

Cost of Living in Clearwater, FL

Cost of Living in Clearwater, FL

Is Clearwater an affordable city to live in? Learn more about the cost of living and all the factors that go into it, including housing, utilities, healthcare, and more.

Finding a city to relocate to can be pretty stressful at times. However, ensuring you can afford where you live is one of the most important deciding factors when choosing which city to move to. Here is a guide that covers everything you need to know about the cost of living in Clearwater.

Clearwater, Florida, is a highly sought-after city. This is mainly because of its beautiful beaches with powdery white sand and crystal clear waters. Clearwater is not only a top city to move to but also a great destination city for vacations. It is located in a prime location in Florida, and because of that, tons of people are constantly moving to or visiting Clearwater

There is a misconception that most touristy areas are always expensive to live in. However, you will be surprised to hear that that is not the case for Clearwater, FL. Follow along as we discuss the cost of necessities to live in Clearwater.

downtown clearwater, florida

Here are the critical factors that go into what it costs to live in Clearwater.

Overall Cost of Living

Clearwater's overall cost of living is 1 percent lower than the national average. This may not seem like a whole lot, but in perspective, it is. Considering how busy this city is with visitors and residents moving in daily, some may expect the cost of living in Clearwater to be through the roof. So, Clearwater has an overall cost below the average, which is excellent news for those who are looking for an affordable city to live in.

A handful of factors determine the overall cost of living. As you keep reading, you will learn more about those factors and how much they cost in Clearwater. You may be shocked at how affordable this city is.

Let's look at comparisons of Clearwater's cost of living to other popular cities in Florida.

Clearwater is...


In today's housing market (and over the last couple of years), affordable housing has been difficult to come by. As most people know, the housing market has been everywhere since the pandemic. Finding a city that has affordable housing, a large inventory to choose from, and is not super competitive can be hard these days. 

However, we are here to ease that stress. Clearwater's housing costs are 9 percent lower than the national average, which is fantastic for those considering moving to the city. But like every other city in the United States, home prices have increased over the last year. 

The median sold price in Clearwater is $368,360 as of this March. This is an 8.6 percent increase from last March, where the median sold price was around $339,274. On the plus side, inventory in Clearwater is still increasing. Since last month, there has been an 8 percent increase in the number of homes for sale. This is an excellent opportunity to find that perfect home for you and your family. 

interior of home design welcome home cozy

Another essential thing to discuss is whether homes sold for the asking price or above or below. On average, more than half of the homes on the market are sold for under the asking price, and only a sliver of homes have been sold for over. Homes are also sitting for longer on the market, which gives you, as a buyer, more time to search and consider homes that are for sale.

If you would like more guidance or have any questions about the real estate market, you can contact us today to get connected with a local Real Estate professional. 

Read about the best neighborhoods to live in in Clearwater, Florida. 


Another important factor when determining the cost of living in Clearwater is the cost of utilities. Because you must have utilities to live comfortably, living in an area with affordable energy and water is essential. 

Clearwater's overall cost of utilities is 3 percent less than the national average. A household of 4 should expect to spend around $250 monthly on electricity. This is below the national average of $290 a month for electricity. 

Your electricity bill can be higher or lower than your neighbor's; it all depends on how much you are using. To be energy efficient, focus on turning things off when they are not in use, like lights, TVs, etc. People have also even gone as far as getting solar panels put on their homes to help lower the cost of electricity.

Another bill that can add up for people in Florida is the water bill. An average water bill for a Clearwater resident is around $30. However, this can be managed if you are careful with how much water you are using. Most residents of Florida see their water bills getting higher the warmer it gets outside. This is because of the extra usage of water to do things like water plants, fill pools, use lawn sprinkler systems, and more. 


Considering your income is the only way to determine what is affordable for you. Some people who make above-average income may have a different definition of what's cheap compared to someone who makes less than average income. 

The average income for a resident in Clearwater, Florida, is $50,335, and the household average of $81,020. Whether you make more or less than that, you can still live comfortably in Clearwater. 

If you are relocating to Clearwater and are job hunting, you are in luck. Clearwater has a healthy job market with an abundance of options to choose from. Some of the best-paying jobs in the area are Pharmacists, Sales Managers, Software Developers, Advertising and Promotions Managers, Chief Executives, and more.  

CEO, sales, numbers, graphs, corporate job

Groceries and Food

Like most other cities in Florida, the food costs are higher than the national average, specifically 8 percent higher. This happens mainly because there isn't income state tax in Florida. They increase the price of food to make up for the lost revenue when not making Florida residents pay state tax on their income. 

On average, the Clearwater resident will pay...

  • $4.19 for a loaf of bread
  • $2.62 for a gallon of milk
  • $2.43 for a carton of eggs
  • $3.63 for a bunch of bananas

Even though food and groceries are more expensive in Clearwater, you can still budget and shop smart. Purchasing only items you need or shopping at an affordable store like Lidl can help lower your monthly food costs. On average, a single adult in Clearwater spends a little over $3,000 annually on food. A family of four spends a little less than $10,000 on food and groceries annually.

If dining out at restaurants is something you enjoy, check out these best restaurants in Clearwater


Another great thing about living in Clearwater is the affordable healthcare. The overall cost of healthcare in this city is 8 percent lower than the national average. This is important to tons of people who are thinking about relocating to Clearwater. Depending on personal circumstances, healthcare can already be expensive for some, so finding a city with cheaper healthcare prices is essential. 

Here is a chart on the average cost of healthcare for a singular visit.

Doctor's Visit Dentist Visit Optometrist Visit Vet Visit
$115.17 $99.36 $108.48 $59.92

Source: PayScale

Not only is the healthcare in Clearwater affordable, but they also have some of the best healthcare workers and systems. Morton Plant Hospital has been rated one of the highest-performing medical centers in Clearwater. According to U.S. News and World Report, Morton Plant Hospital is ranked #7 in all of Florida and #2 in the Tampa-St. Petersburg area. 


traffic in clearwater over the bridge cars transportation

Transportation plays a huge part in everyone's daily life. Living in a busy city, transport by car or public transit is the primary way people get around the town. These prices can add up depending on how often you use transportation to get from point A to point B. On average, the cost of transportation in Clearwater is not less than or more than the national average. 

Let's discuss the gas prices if your main transportation is by car use. The average cost of gas for regular fuel is $3.49 per gallon in Clearwater, and the national average is $3.61. Even though gas prices all over the country are currently high, the prices in Clearwater are not as high as the national average. 

Regarding public transportation, like buses and trolleys, Clearwater has a few choices. The primary public transit in Clearwater is the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority (PSTA). This transportation system allows you to get around the entire Pinellas County. A regular cash fare to ride is $2.25. Check out their website for more information on the routes and schedules. 


As most people know, Florida is a popular place to move to because they don't have income state tax. Living in the state is a huge benefit because you get to keep that extra money every time you get a paycheck that you would typically pay in any other state. 

Another great thing about Clearwater is that its sales tax rates are below the average. You will see the sales tax added to anything you purchase, like goods or services. The sales tax in Clearwater is 7 percent, 6 percent of that is Florida's state sales tax, and the other 1 percent is the city tax rate. 

Overall, Florida continues to be a relatively low-tax state but has higher local tax rates. So before moving to a city in Florida, it is essential you understand the local tax rates. 

beach at clearwater crystal blue water white sand

Pros and Cons of Living in Clearwater


  • Overall an affordable city to reside in
  • Cheaper than average (and most other big cities in Florida)
  • Housing costs are less than the national average
  • Tons of inventory for housing
  • Cheaper utilities than the average
  • Good, affordable healthcare
  • No income state tax
  • Healthy job market


  • Housing market costs are going up, as they are in all other parts of the country
  • Not that many transportation options
  • Food prices are high
  • Tons of traffic throughout the city


What is a good salary to have in Clearwater, Florida?

A salary between $40,000 and $50,000 will allow you to live comfortably in Clearwater.

Is Clearwater an excellent place to live?

The short answer is yes. Clearwater has so much to offer to its residents and visitors. There is a reason why Clearwater is the number one vacation spot for people with their friends and families. Not only does it have an abundance of things to do, but it is also affordable.

What are the downsides of living in Clearwater?

The humidity is very high because the city is so close to the water, there is heavy traffic wherever you go, there is a lack of public transportation, prone to hurricanes, and food costs are higher than the national average. 

Cost of Living in Clearwater - Our Final Thoughts

As you read through this guide on the cost of living in Clearwater, we hope it helped you better understand what you would pay to live in the city. Clearwater's beauty and shoreline bring many visitors and residents to the city daily. 

Most people have a misconception that known cities are more expensive than other cities around them, and that is only sometimes the case. The cost of living in Clearwater is overall cheaper than the national average. It is also more affordable than neighboring cities like Fort Lauderdale and Tampa. 

If you are considering relocating to Clearwater, Florida, you can contact us today to get in touch with a local real estate professional for more guidance. 

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Ryan Fitzgerald

Ryan Fitzgerald

Hi there! My name is Ryan Fitzgerald, and I am a REALTOR®. My goal is to help you learn more about real estate through our Real Estate Blog! Hopefully, you enjoyed the above blog post and it found a way to provide help or value to you. When you're ready to buy or sell a home of your own let us know here. Please feel free to join the conversation by dropping us a comment below.

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