Looking for an affordable living experience in the heart of Ohio? Then check out Akron, a gorgeous city along the Little Cuyahoga River just 30 miles south of Cleveland and the county seat of Summit County. There are many opportunities for individuals and families in the area, and the city is still relatively small with just a population of 198,314. The median property value is $81,400, making Akron one of the most affordable cities in the nation. The area is accessible to other parts of the region with easy access to Interstate 76 and 77, taking you to Pittsburgh, PA and Charleston WV respectively. Here are the details you should know about Akron’s cost of living and why you should consider a move there.
Akron Cost of Living Index
How much do you need to earn to live in Akron? One of the best ways to determine why you should move the Rubber City is by comparing Akron’s cost of living index to the current city where you reside. Also take in account what kind of lifestyle you want to live when you get there, the number of people in your household, and whether your income will change. Using a cost of living calculator will help you assess these comparisons easily.
The cost of living index in Akron is 93.9%. That means Akron is 6.1% more affordable than the national average. So, no matter where you currently live, you’ll probably be saving money in Akron. Housing costs in Akron only hit 86% on the index, meaning that you can find a reasonably priced home with ease.
The average cost of groceries in Akron is about even with the national average, but critical services like healthcare, transportation, and utilities are 5-7% below the average. Once again living costs in Akron are definitely on the affordable side.
The Consumer Price Index for the Akron metro area increased 1.6% over the most recent year. Food prices increased by 0.8% and the energy index increased by 1.6%. Meanwhile gasoline prices rose 22.7%. Housing is down -0.4% and apparel prices have dropped a hefty -11.1%.
Cost of Groceries, Food, Gas & Household Items in Akron
How affordable is Akron? Let’s break down the purchasing power of living in Akron by going through the average prices of the most common household items. Keep in mind what standard of living you want to have in Akron as you compare:
Cost of Items in Akron
- Steak (ribeye, 1 lb): $10.83
- Milk (whole, ½ gal): $1.98
- Eggs (1 dozen, grade A): $1.35
- Potatoes (5 lb bag): $2.82
- Bread (wheat, 1 loaf): $3.23
- Beer (Heineken’s 6-pack): $8.97
- Movie ticket (first run): $10.28
- McDonald’s burger (Quarter Pounder): $3.53
- Average cell phone bill: $174.41
- Average total energy bill in Akron: $159.35
- Price of gas in Akron: $2.29 (2019)
Akron Real Estate Market
Housing prices throughout Ohio are among the most affordable in the United States, and the Akron real estate market is no exception. This makes the cost of maintaining a nice lifestyle that much more reasonable.
The median home price in Akron is $81,400, up 1.62% between 2017 and 2018. Property taxes range from $800 and $1,499, and the average commute time is just 21.1 minutes. Just over 50% of Akron residents own homes, lower than the national average of 63.9%.
Here are some of the most popular sections of Akron with options for any type of homeowner:
- Downtown is the cultural hub of Akron with great local eateries, the popular Akron Zoo, and several affordable condos including the Canal Square Lofts.
- North Hill. One of Akron’s oldest working class neighborhoods is referred to as the “International District.” It’s a diverse area with many 3-4 bedroom homes for under $100k.
- Firestone Park is starting to gain momentum again, as it used to be a strong industrial community in Akron. The neighborhood has a 103 year history going back to the beginning of the automobile industry.
Akron has home prices that should be suitable for anyone’s budget. Whether you’d like to save money by living in East Akron or you prefer splurging on a home in Merriman Valley (where the median home price is $241.7k, there is something for everyone here.
Akron Rental Market – Average Rents in Akron
As mentioned above, the home ownership rate in Akron is about 12% below the national average. The average one bedroom apartment rent in Akron is $719 according to RentJungle, a 9.18% increase from the previous year. A two bedroom apartment averages $903, which is a 11.96% increase from last year.
The average Akron rent prices vary from one neighborhood to the next. The area around University of Ohio-Akron is among the highest rent areas in the city at $924/month, Merriman Valley averages $848/month, Chapel Hill is $789/month, and Wallhaven is $772/month.
- Here’s a quick overview of the most popular Akron neighborhoods for renters and a handful of popular apartment complexes to consider.
- Downtown Akron is the center of it all, with some of the most popular venues within a short walking distance. The average rent here is $1,277.
- Goodyear Heights is known for its English cottage-style houses and an average rent of $1,054.
- Ellet has the small town charm that many residents cherish. It’s affordable and close to the Akron Fulton airport. Its average rental price is $813.
Average Salary & Household Income in Akron
How much do you need to make to live in Akron? A good place to start is with the average salary in Akron which is $60,000 or $16.73 an hour according to Payscale. Wages are on the way up, trending at 0.5%.
Here’s the average income in common jobs:
- Mechanical Engineer: $68k
- Electrical Engineer: $67k
- Project Manager: $74k
- Software Developer: $59k
- Project Engineer: $66k
- Operations Manager: $69k
Akron’s economy is becoming more robust by the year, thanks to a growth of many sectors like healthcare, industrial, and educational. Here are some of the top employers in Akron:
- The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co
- Akron Children’s Hospital
- University of Akron
- Summa Health System
- Gojo Industries, Inc.
The median household income in Akron is $37,533, with 84,800 total households.
Income, Sales & Property Taxes in Akron, OH
Don’t overlook how taxes will impact your cost of living in Akron, OH! Here’s what you can expect to pay for income tax, property tax, and sales tax in Akron.
Ohio Income Tax Rate
Ohio has a flat taxable business income rate of 3%. The state’s progressive income tax system ranges from 0% tax for earners of $22,150 or less, up to 4.797% for the highest earners.
Akron Sales Tax Rate
The Ohio state sales tax rate is 5.75%, one of the lowest among states with a sales tax. Counties and regional transit authorities may infuse additional sales and use taxes. The Akron sales tax is 6.75%, which puts it in the middle of the pack within Ohio. The state has the 27th highest sales tax rate in the United States based on combined state and average local tax rates.
Akron Property Tax Rate
Ohio property taxes are slightly above the U.S. average at 1.48%, which ranks 13th highest in the nation.
Akron vs. Columbus Cost of Living
Have you been trying to decide between Akron and Columbus? What is the Akron vs Columbus cost of living? Which city is more affordable? Both are large metro areas in the state of Ohio but there are some significant differences between the two.
Akron, OH is 18.7% cheaper than Columbus, with the median home cost being the biggest factor in the cost of living difference. A property is 57% cheaper in Akron than in Columbus. The cities are categorized slightly differently as well, as Akron would be considered a suburb and Columbus is a standalone city (and the state capital).
With its affordable cost of living, diverse neighborhoods, and close proximity to Cleveland, it’s no wonder so many people are choosing to settle in Akron, Ohio. Are you ready to call Akron your new home? Contact Summit Moving for a FREE quote. Call 330-633-3633 for more information.