Living in Birmingham, AL: 5 Factors to Consider

As the third largest city in Alabama, Birmingham is a unique city where a small-town vibe and big future potential combine to create an ideal place to call home. With an abundance of natural beauty, quaint neighborhoods, and a robust job market, living in Birmingham can be attractive for many new homebuyers. However, before moving anywhere, it's always best to get to know a city and what it has to offer. So, let's tour The Magic City and see what makes it so attractive. 


5 Reasons Why Birmingham Is a Good Place to Call Home 

Whether you’re a fan of southern comfort food or just simply enjoy the history of the city, you may not realize that there are other perks to living in The Magic City. Below are five elements that will help you decide if Birmingham suits your lifestyle needs. Let’s dive in!


1. Affordability 

One of the advantages of living in Alabama, no matter the city, is that its average cost of living is well below the national average for the United States. Birmingham is a little more expensive than other places in the state, but it's still about 13 percent cheaper to live here than in other states. 


The median home price is around $175,000, which is well below the national average of $340,000, so it's generally more affordable to buy a house in Birmingham. Groceries, transportation, and products and services are also below the national average, so your money goes further in Alabama than elsewhere. 


The only amenity that's more expensive than the national average when living in Birmingham, AL is healthcare, which is about 22 percent higher. This is due to a limited number of clinics and hospitals, despite growing demand from a rising population.


2. Job Market 

The job market in Birmingham is healthy and growing along with the rest of the city. Overall, the unemployment rate is low, at around 2.2 percent. Plus, the city isn't massive, meaning you won't have a long commute to work every morning. 


Industries that are thriving right now include construction, information services, health and education services, and hospitality. Some of the largest employers in the city include the University of Alabama at Birmingham (both the school and the hospital), Shipt, and Alabama Power. Additionally, Birmingham is developing a robust tourism industry, and there are a growing number of attractions and amenities, such as Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum and Regions Field.


3. Quality of Life 

While it may be easier and more affordable to buy a house in Birmingham, you must also make sure the area suits your day-to-day needs. Whether you're a nature lover, enjoy the nightlife, or are just concerned about how easy it is to see your doctor, here's a breakdown of the quality of life in Birmingham.



Because the city is growing, it's becoming more diverse and culturally significant. No matter your entertainment preferences, you're sure to find something you enjoy. For sports lovers, the Barons play at Regions Field, and you can check out other sports at Bartow Arena. If you're into the performing arts or museums, there are plenty of options available, including the Alabama Theater and the Birmingham Museum of Art. 


The city is also home to many cultural festivals, including the Magic City Mural Festival, Dia de los Muertos, and the Sidewalk Film Festival.



Birmingham features tons of natural beauty. Right downtown, you’ll find several parks including Railroad Park and Avondale Park. There are plenty of outdoor adventures to be had at Oak Mountain State Park, Ruffner Mountain, and Moss Rock Preserve, which are all found within a short drive of the city.



As mentioned, Birmingham’s healthcare costs are a little higher than the national average, but you have convenient access to the University of Alabama Birmingham (UAB) hospital. UAB is not only the largest hospital in Alabama, but it's been ranked as the best healthcare provider in the state. Also, because the population is growing, more clinics and providers are opening within the city.


4. Community 

Birmingham is becoming a major urban metropolis, meaning that new stores, restaurants, and cultural experiences are opening in the city every day. But when searching for the best neighborhoods in Birmingham, AL, you want to be sure you can capture a real sense of community. 


Fortunately, there are an array of options available. For example, you can live close to UAB in the Five Points South neighborhood, which offers a college-town vibe. Or you can live on the north side of Birmingham, known as Central City, giving you access to downtown and all the amenities it has to offer. If you want to live in a historic neighborhood, Highland Park features some of the oldest homes in the city.


5. Education 

The largest school in Birmingham is UAB, but the city is home to a vast network of elementary, middle, and high schools, too. Many of these institutions are highly rated, although it depends on which district you live in. As you can imagine, the best neighborhoods in Birmingham, AL have the best schools, such as Inverness Elementary School, Phillips Academy, or George Washington Carver High School. The city also has over 300 private school options, such as John Carroll and Briarwood, if you prefer private institutions over public schooling.


Birmingham Is the Perfect Blend of Affordability and Quality of Life 

Living in Birmingham, AL offers an exciting opportunity to grow and evolve with a city as it expands its population and culture. While The Magic City is long past its days as a mining and steel town, it’s finding a new cultural identity as a hotspot for healthcare jobs, entertainment, and the arts. Most importantly, it is an affordable choice for those looking to move to a new city in the South. 


Thankfully, you can find new construction homes in Birmingham that are more affordable and far easier to maintain than pre-existing houses in the same area. At Century Communities, we make it easy to find your next home with our online tool. Explore our homes in Birmingham today and learn why The Magic City is unlike any other place in Alabama! 


Birmingham, AL FAQ 

If you’re considering living in Birmingham, AL, you probably have some questions about the city. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions by people moving to the Birmingham area. 

Is Birmingham, Alabama a Good Place to Live? 

Yes, living in Birmingham can be a fantastic choice for those who like great outdoor scenery and a small-town feel in a medium-sized city. Its cost of living is lower than many other states and it has a healthy job market. Plus, The Magic City is also a true arts hub, having some of the best art museums, performing arts groups, and entertainment events. However, if you like a larger city with lots of hustle and bustle, such as its neighbor, Atlanta, Birmingham may not be the best choice.


Why Move to Birmingham?  

Alabama is an up-and-coming state, and Birmingham offers an excellent mixture of entertainment, natural landscapes, and culinary delights. Living in Birmingham, AL is affordable and offers many amenities, plus without the crowded urban feeling of a city like Atlanta.


The neighborhoods here are still small enough to provide a sense of community, but there is plenty of growth and development to make them more appealing to a wider set of demographics. Overall, move to The Magic City if you want to create a sense of home.


What Are the Best Places to Live in Birmingham, AL? 

Some of the most popular places to live in and around Birmingham are Vestavia Hills, Homewood, and Hoover. However, these are technically suburbs that are about 15-20 minutes outside of downtown Birmingham. If you prefer to be in the heart of downtown, some of the best options are Highland Park, the Lakeview District, and Five Points South. 

The statements contained herein discuss general factors and do not constitute professional, investment and/or financial advice.


This is not an offering of property to residents in any jurisdiction that may have restrictions on interstate offerings of real estate, unless the property has been so registered, qualified or exemptions are available. It is the intent of Century to sell its residential homes pursuant to an exemption from the registration requirements the Interstate Land Sales Full Disclosure Act (15 U.S.C. 1701, et seq.).