Is it Expensive to Live in Prescott AZ? An In-Depth Analysis

Is it expensive to live in Prescott AZ

In this article, we will delve into the various aspects that constitute the cost of living in Prescott, from housing and utilities to groceries, transportation, and more. Prescott is a city that’s often recognized for its high quality of life. With a population of just over 40,000, it provides a sense of community that can be harder to find in larger cities.

But what does it cost to be a part of this community? Let’s take a closer look. Numbeo and Best Places are two good resources for exploring the cost of living in various cities, including Prescott, and we’ll be referring to them throughout this article.

The Factors Influencing Cost of Living

Understanding the cost of living requires more than just looking at a single number. Various factors come into play, including housing, utilities, groceries, transportation, healthcare, taxes, and more.

Each of these components contributes to the overall cost of living, and the relative importance of each can vary depending on personal circumstances For example, a retiree may be more concerned with healthcare costs, while a family with young children may prioritize housing and education.

When it comes to Prescott, how do these factors stack up? Here we’ll delve into each component of the cost of living, drawing on data from reliable sources, comparing Prescott to other cities, and discussing what these costs mean for different segments of the population.

Understanding Housing Costs in Prescott, AZ

Housing often represents the largest single expenditure for most households. Whether renting or buying, the cost of housing in Prescott plays a significant role in the overall cost of living. As of the last update, the median home cost in Prescott is higher than the national average, reflecting the city’s desirability and amenities.

Zillow offers up-to-date information on home prices in Prescott and can be a helpful resource for potential buyers.

Renting can often be a more affordable option, particularly for younger residents or those not yet ready to commit to homeownership. As in many cities, the cost of rent in Prescott varies depending on factors such as location, size, and type of property. The average rent for an apartment in Prescott tends to be slightly higher than the national average, according to data from RentData.

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Housing Costs

When contemplating a move to Prescott, it’s natural to compare the city’s housing costs with those of other cities. According to data from Zillow, housing costs in Prescott tend to be higher than the national average but lower than in many major metropolitan areas.

For example, while the median home price in Prescott is higher than in Phoenix, it’s significantly lower than in cities like San Francisco or New York City.

In terms of rent, Prescott also stands somewhere in the middle. Data from RentData suggests that while rent prices in Prescott might be higher than in smaller towns or more rural areas, they are generally more affordable compared to large urban areas.

Utility Cost in Prescott

Utilities, including electricity, water, heating, cooling, and garbage collection, also make up a significant portion of the monthly expenses for Prescott residents. According to Numbeo, the cost of utilities in Prescott tends to be close to the national average, with some seasonal variation due to the area’s climate.


It’s important to note that the cost of utilities can be influenced by various factors, including the size and efficiency of your home, your personal usage habits, and the specific utility companies that serve your area. APS, the primary electric utility company serving Prescott, provides detailed information on their rates.

Comparing Utility Costs

How do utility costs in Prescott compare to other cities? Based on data from Numbeo, Prescott’s utility costs are on par with many other cities in Arizona, including Phoenix and Tucson. Compared to cities in states with more extreme climates, such as Las Vegas, NV, or Minneapolis, MN, Prescott’s utility costs may be slightly lower due to its milder weather.

Transportation Costs in Prescott

Transportation costs are another major factor to consider when evaluating the cost of living. These costs can include expenses related to owning and maintaining a vehicle, such as car payments, insurance, fuel, and maintenance, as well as public transportation fares. According to GasBuddy, fuel prices in Prescott tend to be close to the national average.

Public transportation in Prescott is provided by Prescott Transit Authority, which offers affordable bus service within the city. However, as is the case in many smaller cities, many residents find that owning a car is the most convenient way to get around.

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Comparing Transportation Costs

When comparing transportation costs, it’s important to consider both private and public transportation expenses. Based on data from GasBuddy, the cost of gasoline in Prescott is slightly higher than the national average, but on par with other cities in Arizona.

For those reliant on public transportation, the fares of the Prescott Transit Authority are reasonably priced and comparable to those of similar-sized cities.

Grocery Costs

Groceries are a fundamental part of living expenses. The cost of groceries in Prescott is generally close to the national average, according to Numbeo.

The city offers a range of grocery shopping options, from large national chains such as Walmart and Safeway to local markets like the Prescott Farmers Market. The availability of different shopping options gives residents the flexibility to find groceries that fit their budget and dietary preferences.

Comparing Grocery Costs

Comparing grocery costs can be a bit tricky due to variations in local products and preferences. However, data from Numbeo suggests that the cost of groceries in Prescott is generally on par with the national average and comparable to other cities of similar size in the Southwest.

It’s important to note that individual grocery bills can vary greatly depending on eating habits, brand preferences, and dietary requirements.

Health Care

Health care is another significant component of living costs. Prescott offers access to high-quality healthcare services, with the Yavapai Regional Medical Center serving as the primary healthcare provider in the area.

The cost of healthcare in Prescott tends to be slightly lower than the national average, according to BestPlaces, making it an attractive place for retirees and those seeking affordable healthcare.

heath care

For the remaining sections of your article, continue with this pattern of addressing each of the headings and subheadings, providing at least two paragraphs of content for each, and including relevant external links where appropriate. Always check your facts and ensure the information is updated. Write in a friendly and informative tone to engage your readers.

Comparing Health Care Costs

Healthcare costs can vary significantly from one city to another. In general, healthcare costs in Prescott tend to be slightly lower than the national average, as indicated by BestPlaces. Compared to other cities within Arizona, such as Phoenix or Tucson, Prescott remains competitive in terms of healthcare affordability.

Education: The Expense of Schooling in Prescott

If you’re considering moving to Prescott with children, you’ll want to consider the costs associated with education.

While public schooling is funded by taxes and thus free at the point of use, there can be associated costs, such as school supplies, field trips, or extracurricular activities. According to GreatSchools, Prescott boasts a number of highly rated public schools, each offering various programs and activities.

For those interested in private education, there are several private schools in Prescott with tuition fees that vary depending on the age of the student and the specific institution. Private School Review offers a comprehensive guide to private schools in Prescott, including tuition costs.

Comparing Education Costs

When comparing education costs, it’s important to note that most public school expenses are covered by taxes. Therefore, the costs associated with public education are typically similar across cities. However, the cost of private schooling can vary more significantly.

According to Private School Review, the average private school tuition in Prescott is lower than the national average, making private education more accessible to many families.


When evaluating the cost of living in any city, it’s important to consider the impact of local and state taxes. Arizona is known for its relatively low property taxes compared to many other states, which can make home ownership more affordable.

However, the state’s sales tax is higher than the national average, which can impact everyday expenses. For up-to-date information on tax rates in Prescott, you might find the Arizona Department of Revenue website helpful.


Proceed in this manner for the remaining sections, taking care to provide a comprehensive exploration of each topic. Be sure to use a friendly and informative tone, and incorporate external links where appropriate. As always, check your facts and ensure the information is current before publishing.

Comparing Tax Rates

Arizona’s tax structure might feel different if you’re coming from another state. Property taxes in Prescott, and Arizona more broadly, are considerably lower than the national average. This is especially noticeable when compared to states with notoriously high property taxes like New Jersey or Illinois.

However, the state’s sales tax is higher than the national average, which can offset some of the property tax savings. To get a clear understanding of the tax burden in Arizona compared to other states, you can use the resources available on Tax Foundation.

The Impact of Lifestyle Choices on Living Costs in Prescott, AZ

One important factor that is often overlooked when considering the cost of living is the impact of lifestyle choices. Depending on your lifestyle, your cost of living in Prescott could be higher or lower than average.

For example, those who enjoy outdoor activities like hiking or biking might find that Prescott offers plenty of low-cost recreational opportunities. Conversely, those who enjoy dining out frequently or who prefer to shop at high-end stores might find their expenses to be higher in Prescott.

Frequently Asked Question

In this section, we will be delving into some of the most common inquiries and curiosities that surround our topic.

Is the cost of living in Prescott, AZ higher than the national average?

According to data from BestPlaces, the cost of living in Prescott, AZ is slightly higher than the national average, mainly due to housing costs.

What factors contribute most to the cost of living in Prescott, AZ?

The main factors that influence the cost of living in Prescott, AZ, are housing, utilities, groceries, transportation, healthcare, taxes, and personal lifestyle choices.

How does the cost of utilities in Prescott, AZ compare to the national average?

Utility costs in Prescott, AZ, are relatively on par with the national average, as suggested by Numbeo. However, individual utility costs can vary greatly based on personal usage and specific household factors.

Are healthcare costs in Prescott, AZ affordable?

Healthcare costs in Prescott, AZ, tend to be slightly lower than the national average, making it an attractive place for retirees and those seeking affordable healthcare, according to BestPlaces.

What are the average costs for education in Prescott, AZ?

Public education is largely funded through taxes in Prescott, AZ, so direct costs are generally low. However, additional costs can arise from school supplies, field trips, or extracurricular activities. For private schools, the average tuition varies depending on the specific institution, with details available on Private School Review.

The Bottom Line: Is it Expensive to Live in Prescott AZ?

After evaluating all these factors, the question remains: Is it expensive to live in Prescott, AZ? The answer, of course, depends on one’s perspective and circumstances.

For some, the higher-than-average housing costs might make Prescott seem expensive, while others might find the cost of living quite reasonable when considering the quality of life, healthcare costs, educational opportunities, and natural beauty of the area.

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About the author

Hi, I'm Teri Franks, the voice behind Prescott Voice. I've spent years immersing myself in all that Prescott has to offer, and I love sharing the unique stories and experiences I've discovered. When I'm not writing, you'll find me exploring Prescott's trails or tasting our local cuisine. I believe that the vibrant lifestyle here in Prescott inspires us to live a healthier, happier life. Come join me on this exciting journey as we explore Prescott together.

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