Overall 49%
Goods & Services 7%
Housing 148%
Date & Last Updated: This data reflects 2020 and was released from C2ER in January, 2021; this is the most current data available.
The cost of living index is based on a national average of 100. For example, if the cost of living is 90, then it is 10% lower than average. If the cost of living is 110, then it is 10% higher than average. The breakdown for each index is as follows: goods & services (33%), groceries (13%), health care (5%), housing (30%), transportation (9%) and utilities (10%). If the cost of living data was unavailable for this city, estimates based upon nearby cities were used.
Cost of living149107100
Goods & Services10799100
Health care103100100

Key findings

  • The cost of living in Alexandria is 39% higher than the Virginia average
  • The cost of living in Alexandria is 49% higher than the national average
  • Alexandria housing is 148% higher than the national average
  • Virginia general sales tax is 4% higher than the national average
  • Virginia state income tax is 19% lower than the national average

Most Affordable Places to Live in and Around Alexandria

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Compare Alexandria, VA Cost of Living

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      Price difference in compared to
      Cost of living index
      Goods & Services index
      Groceries index
      Health care index
      Housing index
      Transportation index
      Utilities index

      Median Income & Debt-To-Income Ratio

      Median IncomePer YearPer MonthMax Budget (28% DTI)Max Budget (36% DTI)
      The percent of monthly income spent on housing can be a good indicator of the affordability of housing in Alexandria, VA, as well as the overall cost of living. As a general rule of thumb, the debt-to-income ratio (DTI) for homeowners or renters should be not more than 28 percent of gross income to be spent on housing related costs and not more than 36 percent of income on all expenses, including debts. The median income for Alexandria homeowners, is $135,702. This would allow for a maximum of $3,166 per month to be spent on housing costs. For renters, the median monthly income is $67,327 which would result in a maximum of $1,571 to be spent on rental costs.

      Virginia Sales Tax

      StateGeneral Sales TaxWith Max Surtax

      Virginia Income Tax

      StateIncome Tax (Low)Income Tax (High)

      Goods & Services

      ItemAlexandriaNational avg.Difference
      Haircut $25.56$18.6237.2%
      Beauty Salon $56.94$39.0545.8%
      Toothpaste $3.52$2.3450.2%
      Shampoo $1.04$1.061.6%
      Movie $12.45$10.6816.5%
      Bowling $19.83$14.6735.2%


      ItemAlexandriaNational avg.Difference
      Ground Beef $4.79$4.2213.5%
      Fried Chicken $1.62$1.3917.1%
      Milk $2.58$2.0525.9%
      Potatoes $4.21$3.2928.1%
      Pizza $11.66$10.629.7%
      Beer $10.66$9.3813.6%

      Health Care

      ItemAlexandriaNational avg.Difference
      Optometrist $104.67$108.573.6%
      Doctor $128.00$116.1710.2%
      Dentist $103.17$99.134.1%
      Ibuprofen $10.33$9.686.8%
      Lipitor $429.30$466.928.1%


      ItemAlexandriaNational avg.Difference
      Home Price $520,700.00$184,700.00181.9%
      Avg. Mortgage Payment $2,844.94$1,197.42137.6%
      Apartment Rent $1,611.00$949.0069.8%


      ItemAlexandriaNational avg.Difference
      Gasoline $2.24$2.220.7%
      Tire Balancing $51.00$50.071.9%


      ItemAlexandriaNational avg.Difference
      All Electricity$160.85$167.674.1%
      Phone $177.97$175.641.3%
      Although the cost of living data is updated regularly, this cost of living information is to be used as estimates only as prices can change on an ongoing basis.

      Nearby cities with low cost of living

      City, StatePopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
      Rose Hill CDP (Lee County), VA70891-9%
      Woodlawn CDP (Carroll County), VA2,24793-7%
      Potomac Heights, MD1,19194-6%
      Wakefield town, VA81098-2%
      Belle Haven town, VA5621000%
      Alexandria, VA151,47314949%

      Cities with similar population

      City, StatePopulationCost of Living IndexNational Avg.
      Pomona, CA151,80712525%
      Escondido, CA149,91213535%
      Lakewood, CO149,79311414%
      Kansas City, KS149,75586-14%
      Pasadena, TX153,28689-11%
      Alexandria, VA151,47314949%
      Source: The Alexandria, VA cost of living data displayed above is derived from the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) for 2020.