Cost of Living in Arkansas Cities: These Are the Top 5

Updated On October 6, 2023
Arkansas Little Rock

Arkansas is a state in the southern region of the United States.

This state is famous for its breathtaking scenery, employment opportunities, plenty of outdoor recreation, and excellent state universities.

”The Natural State” (nickname for Arkansas) is also known for its low cost of living and excellent weather.

In summary, here are the best advantages of living in this state: low cost of living; plenty of outdoor activities; low property taxes; nice weather & plentiful outdoor activities.

In this post, you can find out the cost of living in this state.

Furthermore, we have listed the top five most expensive cities in Arkansas.

Is Arkansas a Good State for Living?

Well, as with any state, it depends on what you are looking over.

This state has a lot of activities to do, so you will never be bored.

Also, if you aspire to keep your living costs low and want affordable property taxes, then YES, Arkansas is an admirable state for living.

Cost of Living in Arkansas

First of all, we have to notice that living in Arkansas is not expensive.

Linked to the rest of the country, Arkansas has a much lower cost of living.

Living in this state is less expensive than is on average across the U.S.

In fact, the average cost of living in Arkansas is about 10-15% lower than the average of all states in America.

The state yearly checks in as one of the top 5 cheapest states for living, which is really a huge fact.

Having a low cost of living could solve a lot of financial difficulties.

Low costs for groceries, utilities and transportation all provide cost savings in this state.

But, where the cost of living is prevalent in Arkansas is housing costs.

The average home cost is nearly half of the average home cost mapped across the United States.

Here in the text below, we will look at some of the most common costs when it comes to your budget.

Factors like housing, utilities, food, transportation, and more, influence your personal finances.

Therefore, make sure to know which cities are the top five most expensive cities in Arkansas.

Housing Costs

Usually, housing costs are the main factor in people’s budget.

The average price of homes is $156,800, with the average list price per square foot at $101.

On the other side, the average rent price is just $745 per month for 2021.

That makes Arkansas the second-lowest average rent in the nation.

Indeed, it is amazingly more affordable to purchase a home here than in other states in the U.S.

In general, states with the lowest rental prices typically have the lowest costs of living, which is totally the case for Arkansas.

Utility Costs

Just like the housing costs and utility costs are affordable in this state.

That makes Arkansas a suitable place for good living.

The average household spent only $1,892 on energy, which is 8.7% below the national average.

To add more, the average cost per month for electricity is only $106, while the average cost for water per month is $22.

Food Costs

Arkansas has lower food costs than the national average.

This state offers plenty of restaurants, fast-food corners, healthy markets, etc.

You can easily find everything from fresh seafood to vegan meals.

In general, your food budget should be 11% of your annual income, 6% for groceries, and 5% for dining out.

Here is a look at what you could expect to spend on food items in Arkansas.

For a standard meal out, eating in a famous restaurant, you would pay from $9.75 to $15.

If you prefer Fast-Food Combo Meal in McDonald’s, you can find prices from $8 to $10.

The price for a dozen eggs in a supermarket is around $1.53 to $.94, while the price for one-gallon milk is about $3.49.

Transportation Costs

After housing, utility, and food costs, transportation often takes up the next important part of your funds.

In Arkansas, 93.3% of commuters drive to work, compared to 85.5% of commuters nationwide.

The average cost of a gallon of gas is $2.20.

A monthly public transport pass is around $37.29.

Other transportation costs, like car insurance premiums, can modify by state.

According to data from Insure in Arkansas, the average car insurance premium for full coverage is $1,534, less than the $1,517 national average.

Health Care Costs

Reasonably low healthcare costs gave a significant part of the cost of living.

Arkansas is 35 ranked out of all states in overall healthcare access and affordability.

The average health care price for a single adult in this state is $3,769 per year, compared to the national average of $4,266.

For a family of four, average health care costs total $11,362 per year or $1,588 less than the comparable national average of $12,950.

The Top Five Expensive Cities in This State

Little Rock

Little Rock, the capital of Arkansas, is a city on the Arkansas River.

In this city, monthly costs for rent for a single person vary from $700 to $800.

It depends on where the apartment is located (outside the center or in the city center).

Furthermore, a meal for two in a mid-range restaurant is $50.00 up, while the McMeal at McDonald’s (or Equivalent Combo Meal) is $7.00.

Transportation is well organized in this city.

One-way Ticket for local transport is $1.35, while the monthly pass is around $36.00 – $38.

As for food prices in supermarkets, they are pretty cheap, but compared to other cities in this state – we can say the prices are more expensive.

Accordingly, 1 liter of milk in a local supermarket is $ 0.83, and a loaf of fresh white bread 500g is $2.29.

Shopping malls are also popularized, but here, one pair of jeans Levis 501 or similar is more than $35.00, while one pair of Nike running shoes (Mid-Range) is above $67.50.


In this city, a family of four people has estimated monthly costs of $2,889.98 without rent.

A single person estimated monthly costs are $818.11 without rent.

As for renting, the prices are much costly than in other cities in Arkansas.

For example, a one-bedroom apartment for rent in the city center costs $912.38, while the same apartment outside of the center costs $433.33.

On the other side, a meal in an inexpensive restaurant will cost you $13.00, or if you prefer McDonald’s food will cost you the same as in Little Rock, or $ 8.00.

Also, the prices for food in supermarkets are identically the same as in Little Rock.

A notable fact in Fayetteville is that the monthly fee for an adult person in a fitness club costs around $30.50, which is pretty much expensive.

Fort Smith

As for this city, we can briefly say that it is one of the most expensive cities in this country.

In Fort Smith, the transportation prices are very dramatic.

As an illustration, a one-way ticket for local transport is above $3.00, while a monthly Pass for local transport is $47.00.

Тhe other prices are identical to the previously mentioned prices in Little Rock and Fayetteville.


Springdale‘s housing expenses are 34% lower than the national average, and the utility prices are 5% lower than the national average.

Transportation expenses like bus fares and gas prices are 15% lower than the national average.

Also, this city has grocery prices that are 7% lower than the national average.

However, these prices are not so affordable compared to other cities in this state.

For example, a doctor’s visit in this city will cost you up to $100.

If you are a pet lover, then you should know that veterinary bills are pretty much expensive.

So, only one veterinary visit for your pet is incredibly $60.10.

Other prices, like food costs and housing costs, are the same as previously mentioned cities.


Jonesboro is known for its beautiful landscape and natural scenery.

In this city, there are plenty of activities which you can do, but not so inexpensive.

With this in mind, we can point out that the monthly gym membership is $50.71, while a movie ticket for one person is about $20.

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1 Comment on Cost of Living in Arkansas Cities: These Are the Top 5

  1. In Jonesboro, the prices for food in supermarkets are slightly lower than the national average.

    For example, a gallon of milk costs $3.11, while a loaf of bread costs $2.00.

    On the other hand, the prices for transportation are higher than in other cities in this state.

    For instance, a one-way ticket for local transport is $2.00, while monthly pass for local transport is $42.00.

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