Skyline of Fort Worth, Texas, at night.

City Guide / Fort Worth

What Is the Cost of Living in Fort Worth?

By Bri Hand | Sep 28, 2021

The low cost of living, affordable real estate, spacious properties, and furnished apartments in Fort Worth are the reasons why Texas is quickly becoming a hotspot for young professionals. Leaving behind the expensive lifestyles of places like New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, many people have found major success relocating to the Lone Star State.

Within Texas, it’s important to find the right city to meet your needs, as well. While Dallas, Houston, and Austin are some of the most popular metropolitan areas in Texas, this doesn’t mean they’re the only options you have. 

One area, in particular, that’s on the rise for its low prices and high quality of life? Fort Worth. If you’re interested in learning more about moving to Fort Worth and the area’s finances, read on for everything you need to know about the cost of living in Fort Worth, Texas: 

  • Overall cost of living in Fort Worth, Texas
  • Cost of living compared to other U.S. cities
  • Specific cost of living indexes

Overall cost of living in Fort Worth, Texas

Before you can dive into the specifics costs you’ll pay as a Fort Worth resident, it’s important to gain a general understanding of the city’s pricing. Here’s how Fort Worth compares to other cities in Texas:

  • Texas: According to BestPlaces, Texas (as a whole) earns a 93.9 on the cost of living index. This is compared to the national average of 100. 
  • Fort Worth: Comparatively, Fort Worth ranks a bit higher than the statewide average. Texas’ fifth-largest city earns a 99.8 on the cost of living index. While this may seem nearly identical to the U.S. as a whole, you’d be surprised at the difference even a fraction of a point can make when it comes to daily life. 
  • Houston: Now that you know how Fort Worth measures up to the national average, let’s take a look at how the city compares to other parts of Texas. Houston is the state’s largest city, home to over double the population of Fort Worth. Surprisingly, Houston actually ranks a bit lower than Fort Worth, earning a score of 96.5 on the cost of living index.
  • San Antonio: Moving onto the state’s second-largest city, San Antonio is a popular hotspot home to over 1.5 million people. San Antonio is both the most southern and westward of Texas’ larger cities, which may contribute to its lower housing cost. The city earns a particularly low score of 89.7 on the cost of living index.
  • Dallas: Home to the Cowboys and the Reunion Tower, Dallas is the third-largest city in Texas. With close proximity to Fort Worth, the two are often lumped together as one metro area. Despite their similarities, Dallas ranks quite a bit higher on the living expenses index with a score of 101.6.
  • Austin: Slightly larger than Fort Worth, Austin is Texas’ capital and fourth-largest city. Although close in population, Austin ranks much higher on the cost of living index, earning a score of 119.3 (well above the national average).

Cost of living in Fort Worth compared to other U.S. cities

So, you’ve seen how Fort Worth stands up to other Texas cities, but what about the rest of the nation? Take a look at how Fort Worth ranks when compared to other popular places in the United States:

  • Fort Worth, TX: 99.8/100 on the cost of living index.
  • New York, NY: New York City earns a jaw-dropping score of 187.2, which is 87.6% higher than the cost of living in Fort Worth. To keep the same quality of life, a resident of Fort Worth would have to nearly double their current salary to live in New York City. Perhaps the biggest disparity between the two cities comes in the form of property values. The median home cost in NYC is approximately 244% higher than it is in Fort Worth.
  • Los Angeles, CA: Over on the West Coast, Los Angeles is the nation’s second-most populated city (and the largest county, if you count the surrounding area). Many actors, comedians, and other LA-based artists have recently made a mass exodus to Texas to enjoy the lower cost of living. So, how do these two cities compare? Compared to Fort Worth’s 99.8 ranking, Los Angeles earns a steep score of 173.3. This makes LA about 73.6% more expensive than Fort Worth. The most notable difference between the two cities is also property values, with LA home prices coming in even more expensive than NYC. A home in Los Angeles will run you about 248% more than it will in Fort Worth. Overall, a Fort Worth resident would need to earn about $40,913 more per year to keep the same quality of life.
  • San Jose, CA: Another California city that’s losing many of its residents to Texas is San Jose. The Silicon Valley region has long been the nation’s capital for tech, but cities like Fort Worth are quickly taking over this booming industry. Lower taxes, property values, and overall cost of living are the main reasons companies like Tesla and Amazon are moving their operations to Texas. So, how does a place like Fort Worth compare to this Northern California tech hub? San Jose actually ranks the highest of all the cities on this list, with a hefty score of 214.5. This makes the cost of living in San Jose about 114.9% higher than in Fort Worth, with property values skyrocketing above 400% more. A Fort Worth resident would need to earn roughly $71,000 more per year to uphold the same quality of life in San Jose.
  • Chicago, IL: Being the largest city in the American Midwest, you can expect the cost of living in Chicago to resemble that of NYC and LA. Although not quite as high as the others on this list, the Windy City still ranks a few points higher than Fort Worth on the cost of living index—106.9, to be exact. Property values cost about 15% more in Chicago than in Fort Worth, and you’d need to increase your annual salary by $4,893 to maintain the same quality of life.

Specific cost of living indexes

A city’s cost of living score doesn’t simply appear out of thin air. Certain facts and figures are considered to calculate the area’s overall score, and each category also earns a score of its own. 

This means in addition to understanding the city’s overall score, it’s also important for prospective Fort Worth residents to take individual scores into account. Here’s how Fort Worth ranks in each cost of living category:

  • Home prices: Housing is one of the biggest factors that contribute to a city’s overall cost of living, and Fort Worth ranks very well in this category. The city earns an exceptionally low score of 85.5 on the housing index. This is well below the national average of 100, and fairly close to the statewide average of 84.3.
  • Groceries: Food is another expense that can vary greatly from city to city. And, once you take a look at our guide to the best restaurants in Fort Worth, your food budget will be a top priority! In all seriousness, in Fort Worth, the cost of feeding yourself is a bit lower than the national average, earning a score of 97.7. However, this is significantly higher than the statewide average, which falls at 93.7. This is most likely due to higher costs in metropolitan areas, compared to the many rural parts of Texas that influence the state’s overall score. 
  • Health: The price of healthcare—such as doctor’s visits, insurance premiums, and medication—also plays a role in a city’s overall cost of living score. Fort Worth ranks a bit higher in this category, with a 99.4 out of 100. This is a significant jump from the statewide score of 95.4.
  • Utilities: While low home prices are great, the cost of living can still add up when you factor in utilities. Equipping your Fort Worth home with running water, electricity, and heat will, unfortunately, bump your cost of living up a few points. Fort Worth earns a score of 100.5 for utilities, slightly higher than both the national and statewide average. 
  • Transportation: Transportation can mean a lot of things when calculating a city’s cost of living. While places like New York or Chicago depend largely on public transit costs, a city like Fort Worth will calculate their transportation costs a little differently. Fort Worth earns a higher score of 113.9 in the category of transportation. Here’s why: Due to fast roads and a higher risk of car accidents, factors like auto insurance, car maintenance, and tolls are significantly higher in Texas cities than in other parts of the country.
  • Miscellaneous: Finally, everything else is lumped into the miscellaneous category on the cost of living index. This score is influenced by all the fun things to do in Fort Worth, such as entertainment, retail, restaurants, home repairs, and any other goods and services not specifically outlined in the other categories. For this part of the index, Fort Worth earns a 108.7 out of 100. Texas as a whole boasts a much lower score of 96.4—but, again, this is expected when living in one of the state’s largest cities. 

Find a home that fits your budget with Landing

Cost of living is a crucial factor that everyone should consider before making a big move. Of course, these facts and figures don’t always keep renters in mind. 

Fortunately, finding an apartment you can afford is easy when you use Landing. With fully furnished apartments, flexible leasing options, and even pet-friendly properties, there’s a Fort Worth Landing available for everyone. Leave apartment hunting in the past, and start your next journey today with Landing! Browse our Fort Worth apartments here.

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About the author

Bri Hand

Bri Hand is Landing's Content Marketing Manager. She currently lives in Salem, Massachusetts, with her partner and dog, Arlo, but relishes any opportunity she can to travel so she can try new foods, see gorgeous sights, and daydream about living somewhere new after visiting there for less than 24 hours.