How High Is the Cost of Living in Oklahoma?

Oklahoma’s cost of living is far below the national average, but you may still face challenges when budgeting for food, housing, transportation, and more.
Written by Katherine Duffy
Reviewed by Melanie Reiff
The cost of living in Oklahoma is outrageously low compared to the national average cost of living. It’s the third least expensive state to live in, and some towns have average home values under $50,000. A single adult needs $32,750 to live in Oklahoma. 
From its wild western culture to its stunning natural beauty, Oklahoma, also known as the Sooner State, is a great place to live if you enjoy everything from hiking to going to the rodeo. Its residents also enjoy an incredibly affordable cost of living. 
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How high is the cost of living in Oklahoma? 

With a cost of living index of 85.7, Oklahoma is the third least expensive state to live in behind
, making this state more affordable than most states in the US. 
The US average cost of living index is 100, so any number below 100 means a lower-than-average cost of living. To put this into perspective, Mississippi’s cost of living index is 84.9, while
is 151.7. 
Let’s put that in terms of real costs—like food, healthcare, housing, transportation, and more. Here's how much these necessities cost in Oklahoma versus the national average. 

Food: $279 to $1000 per month 

Food is at the top of our list when it comes to essential living costs. Here, we’ll only be discussing groceries. Restaurant outings and takeout costs aren’t included. 
According to data from MIT’s
Living Wage Calculator
, the annual cost for food in Oklahoma ranges from $3,351 if you’re a single adult with no dependents to $11,999 for a family of five. In comparison, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that the average monthly grocery bill for US households in 2020 is around $411.
Remember that these costs cover just your monthly groceries. Your morning coffee run, weekly takeout from your favorite restaurant, or date night splurges aren’t covered by these costs! 

Healthcare: $510 per month

The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that in 2020, the average annual healthcare costs per person in Oklahoma total $6,121. That equals around $510 per month. This is just over the national average for healthcare costs, which is approximately $477 per month. 
Healthcare costs, though, can vary widely depending on the person. A very healthy individual with no active prescriptions will pay significantly less than a person living with a chronic illness who requires regular medication and hospital visits. How often you require healthcare will ultimately determine your healthcare costs in Oklahoma. 

Housing: $607 to $1,234 per month 

Oklahoma’s housing costs are mostly responsible for the state’s outrageously low cost of living. The average home value in Oklahoma is $182,683, which is considerably lower than the national median home value of $204,900. 
How does this break down by month? Your monthly housing costs in Oklahoma depend on what kind of home you live in: 
  • Average monthly mortgage payment: $1,234
  • Average studio rent: $607
  • Average one-bedroom rent: $641
  • Average two-bedroom rent: $793
  • Average three-bedroom rent: $980
  • Average four-bedroom rent: $1,170
These averages are state-wide and don’t consider where you live specifically. You may be paying much more to live in
Oklahoma City
, where the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $850—higher than the average cost of a two-bedroom! 

Transportation: $426 to $1,158 per month 

Transportation is another major cost of living in Oklahoma, and it’s one you’ll need to factor in if you don’t live within walking distance to your workplace, necessary amenities, and other places you travel to. 
The average single person with no dependents spends $426 per month on expenses like car insurance, gas, and public transit passes, while an average family of four spends $1,158 per month on the same expenses. To put things in perspective, the national average for a two-person family is $818 per month.
Here’s how these big numbers break down: 
  • Average annual cost of car insurance in Oklahoma: $423 to $1,873 (
    only vs.
    full coverage
  • Oklahoma City monthly bus pass: $50
  • Average
    commute length
    in Oklahoma: 7.3 miles (one way) 
  • Average cost of a gallon of gas, September 2022: $3.302
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How much you need to live comfortably in Oklahoma: $32,750 to $80,268 per year 

After taking all of these essential costs into account, a single adult needs at least $32,750 before taxes to live in Oklahoma, while a family of five needs at least $80, 268 per year. This works out to $15.75 per hour if you live alone and $50.62 if you have a family of five. 
Even though Oklahoma is the third most affordable state in the US, with a minimum wage of $7.25/hr, it could still be very tough to make ends meet in Oklahoma. And what about being able to afford the things you enjoy, like dining out, enjoying a movie at the theater, or spending the day at a theme park? 
See how the prices of some basic non-essentials compare to the national average in the list below:
  • Average cost of a date: $134.27 (US average: $116) 
  • Average cost of a night at the movies: $7.19 per person (US average: $10.61) 
  • Average cost of a Big Mac: $4.07 (US average: $3.99) 
  • One-day Frontier city tickets: $34.99 per person(US average theme park ticket price: $91)
  • Average sales tax: 8.63%(US average: 5.09%)
Living comfortably means something different for everyone, so it’s possible that you’ll enjoy a comfortable life on just $32,750 per year. Thankfully, Oklahoma non-essentials cost considerably less than the national average, but you’ll still need to make more than Oklahoma’s minimum wage to afford them. 

The Oklahoma cities with the lowest cost of living

There are plenty of communities in Oklahoma with an even lower cost of living index than the state’s average. Based on their cost of living index (COLI) scores, here are five of the most affordable cities in Oklahoma:
  1. Blackwell
    (COLI 73.1): Blackwell is a quiet, community-oriented town where the typical home value is just $42,392! 
  2. Perry (COLI 75.6): Perry is a small community just 60 miles north of Oklahoma City. This town has a rich history and has one of the best high school wrestling programs in the country. 
  3. Seminole
    (COLI 76.1): This tight-knit community has several structures listed on the National Register of Historic Places list and has two lakes with hiking trails and even a wildlife refuge. 
  4. Holdenville
    (COLI 69.8): Holdenville is the county seat of Hughes County and is home to a state fish hatchery, a casino, and the Davis Correctional Facility. 
  5. Henryetta
    (COLI 75.2): This small Oklahoma town is notably the hometown of NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Troy Aikman as well as a golf and country club open year-round. 

How to easily find home and car insurance in Oklahoma 

Even as a more affordable state, there are still ways to save if you make the jump to being an Oklahoman—particularly on your home and
car insurance in Oklahoma
! Oklahomans spend $194 more than the national average on their auto insurance, but you can easily save money by shopping around for quotes.
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A single person in Oklahoma needs $2,729 per month to live comfortably.
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