Exploring the Cost of Living in Springfield, MO

Exploring the Cost of Living in Springfield, MO Featured Image

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If you are searching for an affordable place to live in Missouri, don’t go any further from Springfield!

Springfield, MO offers a myriad of fun attractions and convenient amenities, including dining, nightlife, entertainment, outdoor spaces, reputable higher education institutions, and thriving businesses.

For this reason, it is no surprise that the city is a popular choice for many people. What’s remarkable is that, despite its many advantages, the cost of living in Springfield, MO remains within reach for most.

It has an overall cost index of 81.8, which is 18.2% lower than the national average of 100. Remember that an index cost lower than 100 is considered cheaper, while an index higher than 100 is considered expensive.

The required income for an individual is at least $1,000 to meet daily expenses within a month, while a family of four will need $3,468 monthly, excluding rent fees.

To understand Springfield, MO’s cost of living better, let’s dive into the different factors that contribute to everyday expenses while living in Springfield, such as housing, utility, food and groceries, transportation, healthcare, and other expenses like entertainment.

What is Cost of Living?

What is Cost of Living?

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Before we start, let us first define what is cost of living. It refers to the amount of money or expenses someone needs to sustain a lifestyle in a particular city or state.

These expenses cover housing, utility bills, transportation, food or grocery expenses, health care, education, and other miscellaneous costs.

Housing Costs

The Springfield housing market tends to have higher prices. Homes for sale in Springfield usually cost around $3,000 to more than $5.5 million.

Springfield has an average home value of $223,037 as of August 2023, while recent statistics show that the median home sold price across the city is $219,659.

Below is the summary of the median sold price of various housing types in Springfield, depending on bedroom count:

Bedroom CountMedian Sold Price
5+ bed$443,400

Renting a home is quite popular in Springfield as well. The southeastern part of the city tends to have high rent, while northern areas often offer lower rental rates. Here’s how much you can expect to pay for rent in Springfield.

Bedroom CountAverage RentRange
1-bed$710$500 - $1,110
2-bed$900$500 - $1,260
3-bed$1,270$880 - $1,900
4+ bed$1,660$950 - $3,000

Food Prices

Food Prices

Food is another factor that makes up the cost of living in Springfield, MO. Food prices in Springfield are still affordable and remain lower than the national average, with an index score of 94.5.

However, the money you might spend on food will depend on several factors, such as the type of food you take, where you purchase, whether you dine in a restaurant or cook at home, and how often you buy food.

When you choose to dine out, various dining options are available at Springfield, from fast food chains to classic diners to upscale restaurants!

Here’s how much you can expect to spend when eating outside in Springfield:

Food OptionAverage Price
Casual Eateries or Inexpensive Restaurants$14
Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course Meal$45
Fast Food Meal$9

Groceries dot the city, too, where you can find various products at affordable prices. The table below presents the current prices of grocery items in Springfield as of August 2023:

Grocery ItemsAverage Price
Loaf of Bread$3.23
Milk (1L)$3
Soft drinks (2L)$2
Rice (1kg)$3
1 dozen of egg$4
Chicken and meat$9 to $13
Fruits and vegetables$1.3 to $5
Personal Care Items$1.3 to $4

Health Expenses

Health cost in Springfield, MO, is in line with the national average, with an index cost of 100.5, meaning it is just a bit higher than the national average but not that expensive.

Here’s how much bucks you must have to afford healthcare services in various hospitals in Springfield:

Healthcare OptionAverage Cost
Doctor Visit$124.46
Dentist Visit$98.90
Optometrist Visit$124.94
Prescription Drug$511.71

Utility Expenses

Utility Expenses

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Utility is the second highest expense in Springfield, following the healthcare cost. It has an index cost of 96.5, just 4% below the national average.

Here’s the breakdown of utility expenses you can expect in Springfield:

UtilityAverage Cost
Basic Bill (Electricity, cooling, heating, garbage, and water)
  • $137 (1 person)
  • $211 (family)
Internet Plan$76
Mobile Phone monthly plan (Calls + Data)$78

Transportation Expenses

Transportation Expenses

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Whether you own a car or will use public transportation, considering transportation expenses is vital to ensure you have enough budget and meet the overall cost of living in Springfield, MO.

The city has a transportation cost index of 83, 17% lower than the national average. Most residents use their cars to get around, taking advantage of the city’s well-developed road network.

For private car owners, the average cost of gasoline in Springfield is $3.30 as of 2023.

Bus transit is another option to get around the area and its surrounding cities. If you’re a senior citizen, a person with a disability, or have a Medicare card, you can get reduced fares for transportation.

To give you an idea, here is the average price range of bus fares in Springfield:

Age CategoryBus Fare Range
Adult Fare$1.25 to $125
Youth Fare (5-18 years old)$1.00 to $30.00
  • Seniors (aged 65+)
  • Disabled
  • Medicare Cardholder
$0.60 to $22.50
Paratransit Fares$2.50 to $90.00

Ride-sharing services are also available in the city, like Uber and Lyft.

If you plan to ride a taxi frequently, you can expect to pay an average base fare of $3. It is the minimum amount you have to pay, as the meter will start at $3, and then additional charges will be added, depending on the distance and time.

Entertainment Costs

Entertainment in Springfield is generally affordable compared to similar metropolitan areas in the country. But of course, the money you will spend will depend on your activity and preferences.

To watch a movie in cinemas, a ticket will cost around $5 to $13 per person. For some live entertainment, there are different activities to enjoy, such as watching local talents in theater or attending concerts.

The price of tickets for live performances, however, depends on the popularity of performers, but local theaters provide affordable pricing.

You can also go to museums and attractions in the city, with fees typically ranging from $5 to $15 per head. To go shopping, you will need around $40 to more than $140, especially if you will buy some items.

Suppose you are looking for activities that promote an active lifestyle. In that case, you can go hiking, biking, and exploring parks and nature reserves in Springfields, including the following:

Parks and other nature reserves are free, but others have parking fees.

Cost of Living Comparison

Cost of Living Comparison

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Springfield vs. Kansas City

With a COL index of 81.8, the cost of living in Springfield, MO, is more affordable compared to Kansas, which has 87.9. All factors contributing to Kansas’s cost of living are higher than Springfield, as shown in the table below:

Cost of Living CategorySpringfieldKansas City
Food & Groceries94.596.8

While the difference in monthly budgets to cover daily expenses in Springfield and Kansas is not significant, Springfield’s costs remain lower than in Kansas.

For an individual, the average monthly budget to cover expenses in Springfield is around $1,000, while an estimated $1,082 is needed when you are living in Kansas.

For families with children, the necessary budget in Kansas is about $3,841, whereas Springfield’s is approximately $3,468.

When buying a home, while Springfield has an average home value of $223,037, Kansas’s average home value is $230,960.

Utility bills are also more affordable in Springfield. For instance, you can expect to pay an average of $135.32 for an electricity bill in Springfield, while in Kansas, the average bill is $185.88.

Springfield vs. Missouri

Springfield’s cost of living is more affordable than Missouri’s overall cost of living. While Springfield’s overall COL index is 81.8, Missouri has 85.6. Although Missouri is higher, it is still below the national average, and its city, like Springfield, benefits from it.

Housing, food, utilities, transportation, and healthcare costs are lower in Springfield than in Missouri. It indicates that some cities or neighborhoods in Missouri are more expensive than Springfield.

For instance, Springfield has an average home value of $223,027, while other cities in Missouri, such as Huntleigh, Ladue, Westwood, and Clarkson Valley, have higher home prices. Missouri, overall, has an average home value of $238,760.

Miscellaneous cost is higher, however, in Springfield than in Missouri. It usually covers your shopping expenses, household items not included in grocery, entertainment, outdoor activities, and others not categorized under housing, food, transportation, or healthcare.

The higher COL index in terms of Miscellaneous costs may be attributable to convenient amenities and establishments in Springfield. However, note that expenses under miscellaneous expenses depend on a person’s lifestyle and how often you spend.

Here is the table comparing the COL categories in Springfield and Missouri for easier reference:

COL CategorySpringfieldMissouri
Food & Groceries94.594.9
Exploring the Cost of Living in Springfield, MO


Overall, the cost of living in Springfield, Missouri, makes it an attractive option for those seeking affordability without sacrificing quality of life. The city offers a cost-effective lifestyle for young couples or growing families.

By knowing and understanding the cost of living in Springfield, you can manage your finances effectively and ensure that your income aligns with the expenses while still enjoying the fun and lifestyle that Springfield can offer.

It also helps people planning to move to Springfield to assess whether their current income is enough to maintain their desired lifestyle in the city.

For more information about Springfield, MO, or if you would like to have a tour of any of the available, please get in touch with our team at your earliest convenience.

You can reach us by calling 417-241-6565 or emailing office@gatewaymo.com. We also have social media channels that you can follow to be updated on the latest news and trends happening in Springfield, MO!

Living in Springfield, MO

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Frequently Asked Questions

Springfield has many budget-friendly activities that cater to all ages. For instance, the city’s parks and nature reserves provide a space for hiking, picnicking, and trailing without entrance or will charge just for parking fees.

Springfield also hosts various free events throughout the year, including art walks, outdoor concerts, and cultural festivals. Furthermore, you can find museums with free admission, including the Missouri Institute of Natural Science and the Springfield Art Museum.

Utility cost in Springfield is generally more affordable. Springfield has a utility cost index of 96.5, 4% lower than the national average of 100.

Of course! Springfield has a diverse housing market with varying prices to ensure homebuyers can access affordable housing. So whether families choose to buy or rent a home, it is possible to find affordable options around.

You can find decent homes with at least two to three beds in Springfield for under $150,000. The city’s government also has programs and initiatives to help families get affordable housing in Springfield.

Springfield has several initiatives and programs to support residents with limited financial means and address issues related to poverty and affordability, such as Zone Blitz, OACAC, Springfield Project 2025, Housing Assistance Programs, and more.

Yes! The primary public transportation in Springfield is The Bus, a public transit system operated by City Utilities Transit. Fares, bus routes, and schedules are available on their website.