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Cost of Retirement Living in Cleveland

Cleveland is a top city to retire in the United States, ranking No. 2 by NerdWallet because of the:

  • ACCRA Cost of Living Index
  • Abundance of award-winning medical care including Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals
  • Continuing education programs at Northeast Ohio’s academic institutions such as Case Western Reserve University
  • Cultural highlights including Cleveland Museum of Art and Cleveland Orchestra

You can have it all, and at a cost you can afford.


Affordability matters when selecting a place to retire—we can all gain peace of mind knowing that a fair cost of living will allow us to live a full, rich life for the long-term. Beyond the cost for basic necessities, an ideal retirement location should also provide affordable amenities including:

  • Cultural activities
  • Entertainment outlets
  • Dining options and other recreation

That’s why the big picture of cost includes so much more than the price of groceries and gasoline (while these are, of course, important aspects to consider).

Comparing Cleveland to other Retirement Cities

How exactly does Cleveland stack up against other U.S. urban destinations you might consider as a retirement destination?

Here’s a look at the national cost of living landscape and how Cleveland compares. The hard numbers favor Cleveland, Ohio.

Denver: Rent in Cleveland is 42.76% lower, and restaurant prices are 12.57% lower in Cleveland. Your local purchasing power is 13.75% higher in Cleveland than in Denver.

New York City: Rent prices in Cleveland are 70.01% lower, and restaurant prices are 35.62% lower. You’ll pay 11.85% less for groceries in Cleveland, and your local purchasing power in Cleveland is 42.76% higher than in New York City.

Washington D.C.: Rent is 34.38% lower in Cleveland, and restaurant prices are 35.33% lower. Your local purchasing power in Cleveland is 0.63% higher than in Washington D.C.

Phoenix: Rent prices in Cleveland are 11.65% lower, and restaurant prices are 14.10% lower than in Phoenix. As for your local purchasing power, you’ll gain 7.13% more if you choose Cleveland rather than Phoenix.

Seattle: Rent prices in Cleveland are 55.92% lower, and restaurant prices are 21.83% lower in Cleveland. And, you’ll pay about 5.60% less for groceries if you retire in Cleveland instead of Seattle.