These Are The 10 Most Expensive Places To Live In Virginia For 2018


We used science and data to determine which cities in Virginia that will put a big dent in your wallet.

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Everyone wants a home that mixes affordability with comfort and Virginia does this very well. Families love the Old Dominion’s beaches, midlands, and mountains as tourists before moving here and calling it home.

But before you decide to relocate, you have to do some research into the exact cost of living around the state — and that’s how we’re going to help you.

These are the places in Virginia that cost a pretty penny — the most expensive cities in the state.

After we saved up for months and could finally afford it, we landed on this list of the ten most expensive cities in Virginia for 2018:

  1. Alexandria (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  2. Fredericksburg (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  3. Charlottesville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  4. Manassas (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  5. Purcellville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  6. Belle Haven (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  7. Poquoson (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  8. Dumfries (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  9. Warrenton (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  10. Virginia Beach (Photos | Homes For Sale)

So hopefully Martinsville (the cheapest place to live in Virginia) can show these guys how to live on a budget in the coming years. Read on for how these places had costs rise faster than inflation.

And if you already knew these places were expensive, check out the best places to live in Virginia or the cheapest.

1. Alexandria

Alexandria, Virginia

Population: 140,337
Services: 98
Groceries: 112
Health Care: 94
Housing: 232
Transportation: 121
Utilities: 98
More on Alexandria: Homes For Sale | Data
Alexandria is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 139,966, and in 2016, the population was estimated to be 155,810. Located along the western bank of the Potomac River, Alexandria is approximately 7 miles south of downtown Washington, D.C.

2. Fredericksburg

Fredericksburg, Virginia

Population: 24,932
Services: 98
Groceries: 112
Health Care: 94
Housing: 161
Transportation: 121
Utilities: 98
More on Fredericksburg: Homes For Sale | Data
Fredericksburg is an independent city located in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the Eastern United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 24,286, up from 19,279 at the 2000 census. The city population was estimated at 28,118 in 2015. The Bureau of Economic Analysis of the United States Department of Commerce combines the city of Fredericksburg with neighboring Spotsylvania County for statistical purposes.

3. Charlottesville

Charlottesville, Virginia

Population: 43,223
Services: 104
Groceries: 98
Health Care: 105
Housing: 144
Transportation: 98
Utilities: 98
More on Charlottesville: Homes For Sale | Data
Charlottesville, colloquially known as Cville by locals, is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. In 2016, an estimated 46,912 people lived within the city limits. It is the county seat of Albemarle County, which surrounds the city, though the two are separate legal entities. This means a Charlottesville resident will list the City of Charlottesville as both their county and city on official paperwork. It is named after the British Queen Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz. The Bureau of Economic Analysis combines the City of Charlottesville with the County of Albemarle for statistical purposes, bringing its steadily growing population to approximately 150,000. Charlottesville is the heart of the Charlottesville metropolitan area, which includes Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene and Nelson counties.

4. Manassas

Manassas, Virginia

Population: 37,943
Services: 98
Groceries: 112
Health Care: 94
Housing: 139
Transportation: 121
Utilities: 98
More on Manassas: Homes For Sale | Data
Manassas is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 Census, the population was 37,821. The city borders Prince William County, the independent city of Manassas Park, and Fairfax County. The Bureau of Economic Analysis includes both Manassas and Manassas Park with Prince William County for statistical purposes.

5. Purcellville

Purcellville, Virginia

Population: 7,754
Services: 108
Groceries: 100
Health Care: 99
Housing: 197
Transportation: 94
Utilities: 94
More on Purcellville: Homes For Sale | Data
Purcellville is a town in Loudoun County, Virginia, United States. The population was 9,232 according to the United States Census 2015 Population Estimate. Purcellville is the major population center for western Loudoun and the Loudoun Valley. Today, many of the older structures remaining in Purcellville reflect the Victorian architecture popular during the early 20th century. Patrick Henry College is located in the town.

6. Belle Haven

Belle Haven, Virginia

Population: 6,808
Services: 104
Groceries: 91
Health Care: 109
Housing: 171
Transportation: 104
Utilities: 85
More on Belle Haven: Homes For Sale | Data

7. Poquoson

Poquoson, Virginia

Population: 12,110
Services: 104
Groceries: 91
Health Care: 109
Housing: 163
Transportation: 104
Utilities: 85
More on Poquoson: Homes For Sale | Data
Poquoson is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 12,150. The Bureau of Economic Analysis combines the city of Poquoson with surrounding York County for statistical purposes.

8. Dumfries

Dumfries, Virginia

Population: 5,001
Services: 98
Groceries: 112
Health Care: 94
Housing: 116
Transportation: 121
Utilities: 98
More on Dumfries: Homes For Sale | Data
Dumfries, officially the Town of Dumfries, is a town in Prince William County, Virginia. The population was 4,961 at the 2010 United States Census.

9. Warrenton

Warrenton, Virginia

Population: 9,571
Services: 108
Groceries: 100
Health Care: 99
Housing: 156
Transportation: 94
Utilities: 94
More on Warrenton: Homes For Sale | Data
Warrenton is a town in Fauquier County, Virginia, United States. The population was 9,611 at the 2010 census, up from 6,670 at the 2000 census. The estimated population in 2015 was 9,897. Warrenton is the county seat of Fauquier County. It is at the junction of U.S. Route 15, U.S. Route 17, U.S. Route 29, and U.S. Route 211. The town is in the Piedmont region of Virginia, east of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The well-known Airlie Conference Center is 3 miles north of Warrenton, and the historic Vint Hill Farms military facility is 9 miles east. Fauquier Hospital is located in the town. Surrounded by Virginia wine and horse country, Warrenton is a popular destination outside Washington, D.C.

10. Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach, Virginia

Population: 439,528
Services: 104
Groceries: 91
Health Care: 109
Housing: 147
Transportation: 104
Utilities: 85
More on Virginia Beach: Homes For Sale | Data
Virginia Beach is an independent city located on the southeastern coast of the Commonwealth of Virginia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 437,994. In 2015, the population was estimated to be 452,745. Although mostly suburban in character, it is the most populous city in Virginia and the 41st most populous city in the nation. Located on the Atlantic Ocean at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay, Virginia Beach is included in the Hampton Roads metropolitan area. This area, known as “America’s First Region”, also includes the independent cities of Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Suffolk, as well as other smaller cities, counties, and towns of Hampton Roads.

How We Determined The Most Expensive Places To Live In The Old Dominion For 2018

Cheapest And Most Expensive Places To Live In Virginia Map
There are basic necessities that you have to buy no matter where in the country you live. Those things include:

  • Housing
  • Food
  • Gas
  • Health Insurance
  • Utilities
  • Transportation

You can then compare the cost of these things in each of the places in Virginia to figure out which is the most expensive.

What you are left with is a “Cost of Living Index” that normalizes to 100 for an average place in the United States.

So we used that cost of living index in order to rank all of the 58 places in Virginia that have more than 5,000 people.

And just so you can better understand how the cost of living index works, 100 is the average cost of a place in the United States. A score of 90 means that the place cost 10% less than average.

San Francisco has a score of 243 meaning it’s almost 2.5 times as expensive as the average place in the country.

Taking A Chunk Out Of Your Paycheck

Well there you have it, the places in Virginia that have the highest cost of living, with Alexandria ranking as the most expensive city in the Old Dominion.

If you’re curious, here are the least expensive cities in Virginia:

  1. Martinsville
  2. Roanoke
  3. Vinton

For more Virginia reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Most Expensive Cities In Virginia

Rank City Population Services Groceries Health Care
1 Alexandria 140,337 98 112 94
2 Fredericksburg 24,932 98 112 94
3 Charlottesville 43,223 104 98 105
4 Manassas 37,943 98 112 94
5 Purcellville 7,754 108 100 99
6 Belle Haven 6,808 104 91 109
7 Poquoson 12,110 104 91 109
8 Dumfries 5,001 98 112 94
9 Warrenton 9,571 108 100 99
10 Virginia Beach 439,528 104 91 109
11 Chesapeake 223,233 104 91 109
12 Vienna 15,748 92 113 86
13 Blacksburg 42,539 97 92 108
14 Smithfield 8,059 104 91 109
15 Suffolk 84,216 104 91 109
16 Leesburg 43,208 92 113 86
17 Herndon 23,424 92 113 86
18 Winchester 26,330 108 100 99
19 Newport News 180,831 104 91 109
20 Norfolk 243,056 104 91 109
21 Front Royal 14,537 108 100 99
22 Richmond 205,348 99 96 101
23 Hampton 137,471 104 91 109
24 Woodstock 5,099 108 100 99
25 Ashland 7,239 99 96 101
26 Strasburg 6,348 108 100 99
27 Colonial Heights 17,426 99 96 101
28 Manassas Park 14,409 92 113 86
29 Portsmouth 95,786 104 91 109
30 Christiansburg 20,980 97 92 108
31 Franklin 8,531 104 91 109
32 Harrisonburg 49,043 99 93 104
33 South Boston 8,127 112 102 93
34 Hopewell 22,501 99 96 101
35 Radford 16,511 97 92 108
36 Petersburg 32,226 99 96 101
37 Danville 43,185 112 102 93
38 Wytheville 8,205 97 92 108
39 Emporia 5,825 99 96 101
40 Bluefield 5,451 97 92 108
41 Marion 5,953 97 92 108
42 Galax 6,942 97 92 108
43 Richlands 5,811 97 92 108
44 Pulaski 9,084 97 92 108
45 Lexington 6,990 97 90 92
46 Abingdon 8,166 100 91 89
47 Buena Vista 6,679 97 90 92
48 Staunton 23,906 95 91 94
49 Waynesboro 21,030 95 91 94
50 Big Stone Gap 5,567 100 91 89
51 Covington 5,903 97 90 92
52 Bristol 17,747 100 91 89
53 Lynchburg 75,657 95 92 95
54 Bedford 6,103 95 92 95
55 Salem 24,792 90 90 96
56 Vinton 8,087 90 90 96
57 Roanoke 96,742 90 90 96
58 Martinsville 13,854 96 96 88

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