Cost of Living in Tallahassee, FL 2024: Budgeting for Life


Ahoy, future Tallahassee explorers!  Ever wondered if the capital city of the Sunshine State, Tallahassee, will have your wallet singing or sobbing? Let’s dive deep into the treasure trove of information about living costs, the gold coins you might earn, and where you might spend them!

Tallahassee, not just the political heart of Florida but also a buzzing college hub, sits proudly 22 miles away from the Gulf of Mexico’s shimmering waters. Established in 1821, it took a mere three years for this city to wear the crown of Florida’s capital. And guess what? It’s been schooling folks for over 130 years, thanks to its two mammoth universities.

Ranked among Florida’s crème de la crème places to reside, Tallahassee is home to a whopping 200,000 souls. And why are they all gathering here, you ask? Well, apart from the allure of being in a capital city, it’s got that perfect blend of being close to Georgia’s border and far from the touristy hustle of southern Florida.

Now, let’s talk moolah!  When scouting for a new crib, it’s crucial to know if you’ll be splurging or saving. Good news, treasure hunters! In Tallahassee, your doubloons go further, with living costs lower than Captain Jack Sparrow’s hat. However, beware! Some items might cost you a few extra pieces of eight.

Ready to set sail?  This guide will chart your course through the financial waters of Tallahassee, Florida. We’ll touch every island, from housing to haggling at the market. By the end, you’ll have a treasure map to navigate life in this fantastic city! Anchors away!

Living Costs in Tallahassee: A Quick Dive

Pondering a move and weighing the costs?  The cost of living is like the compass guiding your ship. In Tallahassee, understanding the price tags on everyday items is vital, especially since prices can be as varied as fish in the sea.

Here’s a fun fact: Tallahassee’s living costs swim about 4% below the national average. But hold onto your fishing rods! Groceries might reel you in with prices that are 8% above the national tide.

Now, here’s the sunny side of the Florida orange: The Sunshine State doesn’t dip its hands into your treasure chest with state taxes. So, while you might be shelling out a bit more for your groceries in Tallahassee, remember that your paycheck stays plumper without those state taxes. It’s like getting an extra slice of key lime pie every month! So, can you live the Florida dream comfortably? With no state taxes and a cost of living that’s a tad below average, the odds are in your favor! 

Loaf of Bread Energy Bill Gas Gallon of Milk
$3.74 $149.12/month $4.10/gallon $2.40

Income & Opportunities!

Let’s talk doubloons and ducats in Tallahassee. With a median income of around $49,077, Tallahassee might seem like it’s keeping its treasure chest a tad tighter than the national average, being about 4% lower. But don’t let that fool you! While about a quarter of its residents might be counting their coins, the city’s affordability makes it a gem on Florida’s map.

Now, being the capital of the Sunshine State isn’t just about fancy buildings and politics. It’s a hub of opportunities!  The job market in Tallahassee is as lively as a jig on a pirate ship. Over the past year, jobs have swelled by 2%, making the unemployment rate dip to 5%, which, by the way, is lower than the national average of 6%.

Dreaming of steering your ship in management, finance, or tech? Or perhaps charting unknown territories in architecture or law? Tallahassee’s bustling streets are lined with opportunities in these fields and more. Remember, finding the perfect cove to drop anchor also means finding the right crew and ship to sail with. And in Tallahassee, you’re never far from your next adventure. With a 2% surge in job demand and businesses flocking to its shores, Tallahassee is the place where dreams set sail!

Housing Horizon: A Glimpse into the Market

Ready to drop anchor in Tallahassee? Before you set sail, let’s navigate the waters of the housing market in this charming capital city.

2022 was a whirlwind year for housing markets across the seven seas. But as the year drew to a close, the wild waves began to calm, and the market started to favor sellers a tad less. What does that mean for you? Well, homes began to lounge a bit longer in the sun and often sold for a price that was a bit more… negotiable.

However, there’s a twist in the Tallahassee tale. In December 2022, only 186 homes found new captains, compared to the 346 homes that changed hands in December 2021. It seems the folks of Tallahassee are quite smitten with their abodes and aren’t as keen to part with them as they were a year ago.

Now, let’s talk treasure!  In December 2022, the median price to claim a home in Tallahassee was $255,000, marking a 16% rise from the previous year. But here’s a nugget of good news: on average, homes sell for about 2% below their asking price and take a leisurely 50-day vacation on the market. And guess what? Some of these homes even spark bidding battles among eager buyers!


Let’s dive into the depths of utility costs in this sun-kissed city.

Now, every ship needs its supplies, and every home needs its utilities. In Tallahassee, keeping your ship afloat with energy will cost you around $224 a month. That’s a treasure of about $2,688 annually. But brace yourselves, mateys! The utility costs in this city sail about 11% higher than the national average, making it a bit pricier than other ports in the state.

Now, why the higher costs, you ask? Well, blame it on the sizzling Florida sun! With temperatures that’d make a pirate’s rum warm, air conditioning is as essential as a compass. Most of the doubloons you part with for utilities will be to keep your quarters cool and breezy. The city’s location in the sultry south means there’s a high demand for that sweet, cool air, pushing up the costs.

Culinary Cruise!

Now, while you might find the grocery aisles in Tallahassee priced about 8% higher than the national average, here’s a twist in the tale: dining out might just be your golden ticket to savings! In many ports, dining at a fancy tavern would cost you a pretty penny more than cooking up a storm at home. But in Tallahassee, the scales tip differently. Here, treating yourself to a meal at a restaurant might just be as light on your purse as buying groceries. Talk about a food lover’s paradise!

From bustling bars to cozy cafes, Tallahassee’s streets are a smorgasbord of flavors. Fancy a gourmet meal without burning a hole in your pocket? Tallahassee’s got you covered. But if you’re the kind who loves to handpick their produce, the city’s fresh markets are a treasure trove of juicy fruits and crisp veggies, all without making your wallet wince.


 Tallahassee’s healthcare might make you raise an eyebrow, as it sails about 9% higher than the national average and even outpaces some of its Floridian neighbors. A lone sailor in this city would typically part with around $5,177 annually for healthcare, which is a tad more than the $4,213 average across Florida and other national ports.

But, families with little buccaneers on board, fear not! While you might spend a bit more on healthcare, when it comes to caring for two kiddos, you’d be looking at an average of $11,336 a year. That’s a saving of about $800 compared to other cities across the seven seas. But aye, while Tallahassee offers many treasures, affordable healthcare isn’t its strongest suit.


Now, onto the winding roads of Tallahassee! Transportation costs, like a refreshing sea breeze, are about 6% lower than the national average. But, if you’re thinking of hopping on a public bus, be prepared for a bit of a jig. The routes might be limited, and the hours might not always be shipshape. But hey, the fare won’t make you walk the plank; it’s quite affordable!

Given the city’s bustling streets and the allure for tourists, many Tallahasseeans prefer steering their own ships, with most owning their own carriages. About 87% of the folks here set sail to work within the city borders, while some venture beyond. With either gas or bus tickets in hand, an average Tallahassee traveler would spend around $9,240 a year, which, by the way, is a bit less than the national average.


In the vast sea of taxes, from state and federal income levies to the contributions for Social Security and Medicare, an average working adult in Tallahassee parts with about $5,461 from their treasure chest annually. And guess what? That’s almost in step with the national dance!

But here’s where the sun shines brighter on Tallahassee: Florida’s tax burden is as light as a feather (or almost!). With per capita state tax collections hovering around $2,158 annually, it’s a refreshing dip compared to the heavier $3,151 average across all the states in the realm.

So, if you’re charting your course based on the tax tides, Tallahassee beckons with open arms and lighter pockets. In this sunny city, your doubloons are safer from the taxman’s grasp, making it a haven for those seeking a bit more jingle in their coin pouch


1. How much money do you need to live comfortably in Tallahassee, Florida?

To live comfortably in Tallahassee, considering housing, utilities, food, healthcare, transportation, and taxes, one would need a salary that covers these expenses while allowing for savings and discretionary spending. Based on the data provided, a salary in the range of $50,000 to $60,000 might offer a comfortable lifestyle for a single adult, but this can vary based on individual lifestyles and needs.

2. What is a good salary in Tallahassee, FL?

A good salary in Tallahassee would be one that covers all essential expenses, allows for savings, and provides for leisure activities. Given the median income and cost of living, a salary above $50,000 would be considered good for an individual.

3. What is the average cost of living in Tallahassee, Florida?

The cost of living in Tallahassee varies based on individual needs. However, considering housing, utilities, food, healthcare, and transportation, an individual might spend between $20,000 to $30,000 annually, excluding discretionary spending and savings.

4. Is Tallahassee, FL a good place to live?

Yes, Tallahassee is considered one of the best places to live in Florida. It’s the state’s capital, home to two large universities, and offers a mix of cultural, educational, and recreational opportunities. The cost of living is generally lower than the national average, though some expenses like utilities and healthcare are slightly higher.

5. Is Tallahassee an affordable place to live?

Yes, Tallahassee’s cost of living is generally lower than the national average, making it an affordable place to live, especially when compared to some other cities in Florida.

6. Is Tallahassee cheaper than Tampa?

While both cities have their own unique costs, Tallahassee generally has a lower cost of living compared to Tampa, especially in terms of housing. However, individual expenses can vary based on lifestyle choices.

7. How far is Tallahassee from the beach?

Tallahassee is located about 22 miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico. The nearest beach, St. George Island, is approximately a 1.5 to 2-hour drive from the city.

8. What city in Florida has a low cost of living?

Several cities in Florida offer a lower cost of living, including cities like Ocala, Gainesville, and Pensacola. However, the exact affordability can vary based on individual preferences and needs.

9. Does Tallahassee have a beach?

While Tallahassee itself doesn’t have a beach, it’s in proximity to several beautiful Gulf Coast beaches. The nearest, St. George Island, is about a 1.5 to 2-hour drive away.

Final Words

Diving deep into the living costs of Tallahassee, Florida, can truly illuminate the path to your dream abode. Balancing the scales of expenses, from daily essentials and utility bills to taxes and housing, is pivotal in anchoring your decision on your next port of call.

Tallahassee beckons with its promise of affordability and comfort. Its strategic location makes it a magnet for both the youthful vigor of college-goers and the serene pace of retirees seeking a picturesque haven.

The city is a tapestry of experiences. From diverse attractions and culinary delights to sun-kissed beaches, Tallahassee has a rhythm of its own. If tranquility is what you’re charting your course for, the city’s outskirts offer a serene escape, away from the bustling heart of downtown and academic hubs. These peripheral areas also boast a safety record that’s a notch above the central city zones. While the housing market might be tighter than before, the city’s vibrant pulse ensures there’s never a dull moment.

All Posts


Related Posts