6 of the Cheapest Places to Live in Florida

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kids running on beach
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There’s just something about Florida. Its warm weather and favorable tax climate have long made it a retirement destination, but it has become a top spot for members of younger generations as well.

Being popular isn’t the same as being cheap, though, and some areas of the Sunshine State have hidden costs that will make you downright gloomy.

Still, a handful of Florida cities have a cost of living that is lower than the national average, according to data from Salary.com. The website says costs have increased in many of these communities during the past year, but the following remain some of the cheapest places to live in Florida.

Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach, Florida
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How the cost of living compares with the national average: 2.1% lower

Estimated population: 78,000 as of 2022

Located on Florida’s Atlantic coast, Daytona Beach is a popular tourist destination thanks to its sandy beaches, extensive trails and, of course, the Daytona International Speedway. If you’d like to live here rather than just visit, you might save a little cash. The city’s cost of living is 2.1% lower than the national average.

Gainesville

Gainesville, Florida
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How the cost of living compares with the national average: 2% lower

Estimated population: 145,000 as of 2022

If you’re looking for a home in north-central Florida, Gainesville can be an affordable choice. The community offers residents a full range of services and provides access to quality higher education and health care facilities nearby. And for those who want beautiful weather, Gainesville boasts an average of 2,800 hours of sunshine each year.

Melbourne

Melbourne, Florida
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How the cost of living compares with the national average: 2% lower

Estimated population: 86,000 as of 2022

History and high-tech industry come together in this community located southeast of Orlando. Melbourne has a unique historic downtown, but it isn’t stuck in the past. The city also is part of Florida’s Space Coast, which is an area surrounding the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral.

Palm Bay

Palm Bay, Florida
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How the cost of living compares with the national average: 2% lower

Estimated population: 129,000 as of 2022

The city of Palm Bay can be found midway between Orlando and Miami, and it prides itself as a place of outdoor adventure and natural beauty. Fishing, kayaking, camping and hiking are a few of the activities that both visitors and residents of this city can enjoy.

Pensacola

Pensacola Florida
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How the cost of living compares with the national average: 6.1% lower

Estimated population: 54,000 as of 2022

Pensacola is the least-populated entry on this list of affordable communities in Florida, and it also has the lowest cost of living when compared with the national average. The city is located on the western end of Florida’s Panhandle and has 50 miles of coastline. It’s also home to the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels demonstration squadron.

Tallahassee

Tallahassee, Florida
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How the cost of living compares with the national average: 2.5% lower

Estimated population: 202,000 as of 2022

Don’t overlook Florida’s capital city of Tallahassee, also on the state’s Panhandle, as an affordable place to live. In recent years, the city has made considerable investments to revitalize neighborhoods, protect the environment and create affordable housing. It also has a commitment to the community that includes funding a neighborhood health care clinic and providing free or subsidized tickets to a variety of events.

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