What's the Cost of Living in Mobile, AL?

February 27th, 2023

What's the Cost of Living in Mobile, AL?

Cost of Living in Mobile, AL

Is Mobile, Alabama, an expensive place to live? Let's look deeper into the costs of living in Alabama, the average household income, typical expenses, and more!

Mobile, AL, is considered the "Gateway of the Gulf" since you can't get to the beach without visiting Mobile! Mobile is located in Mobile County, has a total population of 412,000 residents, and is considered to be the 4th most populated city in Alabama. Mobile is home to beautiful historic neighborhoods and southern hospitality that you can not miss out on!

This city is Alabama's only saltwater port, and the part has always played a vital role in the city's economic health. Aside from being the oldest city in Alabama, Mobile has a lot to offer; whether it is for the low cost of living, the fantastic weather, the vibrant metro area, or even the beautiful views, Mobile is a wonderful place to live! You can not miss out on this old-world charm, high quality of life, and the location of this great city!

In this guide, we will be covering the costs of living in Mobile, AL, with data that covers data from all significant areas. These categories will help you better understand what you'll need to budget to live in a place you love!

Mobile port during sunset

Cost of Living

Mobile may be a growing, vibrant metro area, but its cost of living falls well below the national average, making housing inexpensive. The city's cost of living is 15 percent lower than the national average. The cost of living in this area is based on many factors, especially its location.

In all, the housing expenses here are 38 percent lower than the national average. In comparison, the utility prices are also 2 percent lower, and the transportation prices like bus fares and gas prices are 13 percent lower than the national average. On the plus side, groceries are 0 percent higher than the national average, so you will spend the average on food here! You must take advantage of this affordable yet fast-growing city! Check out some of these cost of living prices broken down below!

Cost of Living Category Average Prices
Median Home Price $245,410
Median Rent $749.67
Gas $3.81/gallon
Doctor's Visit $119.70
Vet Visit $40.10

Sourced from Payscale


Mobile is home to a skilled workforce in a right-to-work state. Job mobility and low living costs are why so many people and businesses like to relocate here! The job growth is about 6.6 percent year-over-year, while the unemployment rate is just 2.8 percent, with a median income in Mobile being $49,370.

Mobile has seen the job market increase by 1.5 percent over the last year, so if you are looking for a place to live where you can be comfortable and find many job opportunities, then this may be the perfect place for you! 

If you are looking for jobs in aviation and aerospace, health care, manufacturing, logistics, and distribution, then this city is perfect! On the other hand, Mobile has had a global focus since its founding, thanks to the seaport!

Birds eye view of Downtown Mobile

Housing Market

The climate, culture, economy, job growth, and affordable cost of living are just a few reasons why so many people want to live in this beautiful city along the Gulf! The median home price in Mobile is about $194,900, and home values have increased by 18.5 percent over the past couple of months and by more than 52 percent over the last 5 years!

Mobile offers its residents various neighborhoods that are in the best locations to move to! Check out the best neighborhoods in Mobile to see the best places to live here! On the other hand, this city is ranked as one of the best places to live in the Unitied States!

This city receives high markets for rental market affordability and quality of life. The average monthly rent price is about $1,332 for a 3-bedroom home. Single-family homes make up about 73 percent of the housing units in this metro area, and renting a house here costs less than the national average!

Historic District in Mobile, AL


In Mobile, energy bills cost around $166.05 per month. The utility prices here are 3 percent lower than the state average and 2 percent lower than the national average. All of these costs include basic services such as energy and telecommunications. The average phone bill in this state is about $185.26.

The exact monthly bill will vary depending on your property, utility usage, and the service types you use. For utilities here, you will be paying around the national average, which is not considered cheap or costly. Determining the utility bills will range drastically and not be put on the exact average, so look at all of your options in the area to see how the impact will be on your bills.


Food is one of the most essential necessities, and the costs will vary depending on the location and the store. Adding food costs to the cost of living can be difficult because it depends on who you are feeding, what diet, and where you shop. The food here in Mobile is 2 percent higher than the state average but 1 percent lower than the national average. Still, overall the groceries are about 0 percent higher, so you will spend what an average person in the country does! All of these costs do vary depending on how much you eat out as well. Restaurants can be costly, so make sure to budget your money well to figure out what will be cheaper! Below are a few of the essential items most people buy so you can see the costs of everyday food. 

Food Category Average Cost
Bread $3.39
Milk $2.55/gallon
Eggs $1.64/dozen
Sugar $2.18
Frozen Meal $2.90


Healthcare costs are any costs that are related to any doctor's appointment or any costs for pharmacies and medicine. In Mobile, an optometry checkup costs around $126.98, while a dentist appointment is priced at $113.77 on average. A normal family doctor visit will cost you about $110.05; on the other hand, a bottle of Ibuprofen here will cost about $10.31. All of these costs do vary depending on your location, your insurance, and what services you are using. However, the healthcare costs here in Mobile are 16 percent higher than the state average but only 5 percent higher than the national average.

Healthcare is a significant expense that a lot of people do not look at fully, but since the costs here are higher than the national average, make sure to look at all of your options so you can find the best bet! Due to its location, Mobile is near many of the best hospitals and doctors, so wherever you go, you will always get the best service you deserve!

Hospital in Alabama


Transportation expenses depend on many different factors, with fuel being one of the most important. A gallon of gas here is priced at around $2.58 but does vary depending on the time of year. On the other hand, getting your tires balanced will cost you about $46.57. All transportation costs will vary depending on if you are paying for your car costs or if you are using public transportation. Transportation here in Mobile is 1 percent lower than the state average and 9 percent lower than the national average!

The bus system in Mobile is run by a company named The Wave Transit system. This bus system has 11 routes, most of which cover the downtown area, and is built to help people; get to certain areas and locations in town. The average price for a ticket to ride is $1.25, which covers getting on the bus and transferring once. Anyone who is disabled, older than 65, a Medicare Recipient, or a student can also get discounts on tickets!

Wave transit public transportation


The minimum combined 2023 sales tax rate for Mobile, Alabama, is about 10 percent. This is the total of state, county, and city tax rates. The Alabama sales tax rate is currently 4 percent, and the county sales tax rate is 1 percent. Every tax can vary depending on the item being purchased and where it is, so make sure you keep an eye out for certain items when buying things. Alabama has an individual income tax rate of 5 percent, which compares favorably to much of the country and is about the same for other places near.


Is Mobile, AL, a safe place to live?

Sadly, the crime in Mobile is higher than the United States average for violent and property crimes. The violent crime rate ranks at 30.8, while the United States average is only 22.8, and for property crimes, it scores at 67.5, while the national average is only 35.4

Is it expensive to live in Mobile, AL?

The cost of living in Mobile, AL, is 2 percent lower than the state average and 15 percent lower than the national average. The housing here is on the cheaper side, but the utilities, on the other hand, may be where all the costs go. The cost of living is average, and it all depends on where you live, who you support, and the weather in that area.

Is Mobile, AL, a cheap state?

Mobile is generally considered one of the most affordable places to live in the Unitied States when compared to other cities. The cost of living is lower than the national average, and the city is known for its booming economy. 

Is Mobile a tax-friendly state?

Alabama has an individual income tax rate of about 5 percent, and the tax system is ranked 39th overall, so yes, Mobile is considered to be tax friendly. The minimum combined 2023 sales tax rate for Mobile, Alabama, is about 10 percent.

What is the weather like in Mobile?

The weather here can be challenging. It is ranked the wettest city in the continental United States for annual rainfall, but on the good side, Mobile usually has beautiful warm weather! The hottest months are in July and August, with a high of 91 and lows of 71, and the coolest months are December and January, with highs in the lows of 60 and lows in the 40s.

What salary do I need to live in Mobile?

Most salaries in Mobile, AL, range from $34,630 (25th percentile) to $58,282 (75th percentile) annually. The median income will vary here but stands at $49,370, so anything in these areas can help you live comfortably in Mobile.

Finding the perfect place to live in Mobile, AL

After considering the cost of living in Mobile, AL, you can now decide where to buy your next home. Weighing out all of the factors, such as the cost of goods, utilities, taxes, and more, is crucial when deciding where to live so you and your family can live a happy and comfortable life.

Mobile, AL, is a fantastic place to live, especially if you are looking for a place where it has a low cost of living and breathtaking views! Finding the perfect place to settle down can be stressful, but knowing the costs of living here and all of the options this city offers, you can decide whether or not you want to move here!

If you or anyone you know is interested in searching for homes for sale in Mobile, please get in touch with us here so we can connect you with one of our Realty Specialists to help make this transition for you go smoothly. No matter the location, price, or preferences, we are here to help you through every step of the home-buying process to make sure we can find the perfect home that meets all of your needs and lifestyle perfectly. Contact us today!

Make sure also to check out our other local area guides, including Moving to Mobile, Best Places to Live in Alabama, and Moving to Alabama.

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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.