Located in the southeastern region of the nation, Alabama is home to important historic landmarks, scenic beaches and a broad range of age-friendly recreational amenities. It’s home to the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, a Smithsonian affiliate and official visitor center for the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. The state is among the most affordable in the country, with a cost of living that’s well below the national median, and its sunny skies and comfortable temperatures year-round appeal to those who enjoy being outdoors. 

For older adults who want to maintain their privacy and standard of living but freedom from mundane chores and the burdens of homeownership, independent living is a prime option. These age-restricted communities offer a low-maintenance lifestyle for residents and often include perks such as housekeeping and linen services, home maintenance, meals and planned social and recreational activities. Some communities feature resort-style amenities, such as pools, fitness centers and spas. Costs vary considerably depending on location and amenities, but on average, Alabama seniors pay $2,048 per month for independent living.  

This guide provides more information on the cost of independent living in Alabama and nearby states. It also highlights some options for paying for accommodations as well as services and programs available to seniors.  

The Cost of Independent Living in Alabama

Note: Generally, Independent Living costs range from 30%–40% less expensive than Assisted Living care. Although there isn’t any authoritative information regarding Independent Living costs in the United States, we’ve estimated these costs by reducing the Assisted Living costs reported in Genworth’s 2021 Cost of Care Survey by 35%. 

On average, Alabama residents pay $648 less per month for Independent Living than the average American, or $2,277. Alabama is one of the most affordable states for Independent Living in the South. Mississippi is practically tied with Alabama, averaging just $2,275 per month — $2 less than the Cotton State. Georgia also shares low Independent Living costs, averaging $21 more than Alabama — $2,298 per month. The last two states that border the Cotton State, Florida and Tennessee, are the most expensive at $2,600 and $2,668 per month, or $323 and $391 greater than Alabama.

$2277

Alabama

$2925

The United States

$2668

Tennessee

$2275

Mississippi

$2298

Georgia

$2600

Florida

Within Alabama, Independent Living costs vary considerably. Cities’ average Independent Living costs are roughly correlated with population. Seniors living in Huntsville pay an average of $2,174 per month. Birmingham is the most expensive major city for Independent Living in Alabama, averaging $2,618 per month, or $341 above the state’s average. Montgomery and Mobile are practically tied with each other, costing $2,275 and $2,290 per month, respectively. Tuscaloosa and Dothan, where Independent Living costs $2,048 and $1,396 per month, are substantially more affordable than the statewide average, or $229 and $881 cheaper, respectively.

$2174

Huntsville

$2618

Birmingham

$2275

Montgomery

$2290

Mobile

$2048

Tuscaloosa

$1396

Dothan

Home Care and Home Health Care, ideal for seniors aging in place, cost about the same — $3,813 and $3,851 per month, respectively. Adult Day Care costs just $758 per month. Nursing Homes are the most expensive option available, costing $6,676 per month for a semiprivate room and $7,026 per month for a private room.

$2277

Independent Living

$3813

Home Care

$3851

Home Health Care

$758

Adult Day Care

$6676

Nursing Home (semiprivate)

$7026

Nursing Home (private)

Can You Use Medicare or Medicaid to Pay for Independent Living in Alabama?

Unfortunately, you cannot use Medicaid and Medicare to help pay the monthly fee for residing in an Independent Living community. For seniors who need help with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), there may be financial assistance programs available to help cover the cost of care in Independent Living. For more information about financial assistance for those who need a higher level of care, read our guide to Assisted Living in Alabama.

Read on for more information about using alternative means to make Independent Living more affordable, such as retirement funds, the sale of a home, etc.

Paying for Independent Living in Alabama

While Medicare and most private health insurance policies don’t cover independent living, there are several options for paying for monthly expenses. Many older adults transition to independent living to gain freedom from the hassles and expenses of owning a home, so they sell their house and use proceeds to cover the cost of their senior living residence. Those who want to retain their residence may rent it out for passive income, or they may tap into their home’s equity through a reverse mortgage. For those who don’t own a home, long-term care insurance, Medicaid or veterans’ benefits may cover certain services such as housekeeping, transportation and meal preparation.  

Independent Living Resources in Alabama

There are several free and low-cost services available to older adults in Alabama to help them plan for current and future needs. The following resource table features local agencies that can help seniors understand their health insurance options, obtain federal benefits and find social and recreational programs. It also provides information to help older adults access community-based services such as transportation and financial counseling.  

Resource 
Contact 
Service 
(866) 542-8167 
The American Association of Retired Persons, or AARP, is the nation’s leading organization for those aged 50 and over. This nonprofit agency advocates on behalf of older adults and provides up-to-date information on laws and policies that affect seniors. Through AARP’s website, individuals can get information on events in their community such as defensive driving courses, free tax preparation and informational seminars. The AARP provides access to information on recreational and educational happenings via regular newsletters and its calendar of events. 
(800) 243-5463 
The Alabama Department of Senior Services administers a broad array of programs for older adults in the state. It oversees Alabama’s network of 14 Area Agencies on Aging, which receive government funding to provide supportive services to those aged 60 and over, as well as the Aging and Disability Resource Centers, which offer a single point of contact to help seniors obtain services in their communities. The department operates the statewide Medicaid waiver programs, which may help cover independent living services, and it oversees the Alabama State Independent Living Council. It also provides free health insurance options counseling and information to help older adults protect themselves from Medicare fraud.
(800) 942-2677 
RSVP is a nationwide program that provides volunteer opportunities to those aged 55 and over. Through this program, older adults donate their time and talents to charities and nonprofit organizations in their local community. Specialists provided one-on-one assistance to participants to help them find volunteer opportunities that fit their interests and experience, including placement in volunteer positions in hospitals, museums, performing arts centers, senior centers, schools and food banks. In exchange for their time, volunteers receive supplemental liability insurance, transportation reimbursement and recognition at appreciation events. 
(334) 242-5077 
The Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs helps veterans in the state access the benefits they’re entitled to. Through the state’s 60 veterans service offices, veterans can apply for pension programs and disability compensation, which pays out monthly benefits that can be used toward independent living expenses. Local offices can also help veterans access services in the community such as transportation, social clubs and healthcare services.
(866) 456-4995 
Legal Services Alabama is a nonprofit organization that provides free civil legal advice, assistance and representation to those aged 60 and over. It has eight offices throughout the state and offers in-person and over-the-phone assistance with issues such as Social Security overpayment, denied health insurance claims and consumer debt problems. It can also help older adults understand independent living contracts and payment obligations. 
2-1-1 
211 Connects Alabama provides free assistance with accessing resources in communities across the state, including transportation, health and wellness programs, veterans’ services and financial assistance. Callers get confidential one-on-one help with finding services and supports in their local community to meet their needs.

COVID-19 Rules for Independent Living in Alabama

The following information is based on research done on several government websites. These rules apply to Independent Living Communities and other types of senior living facilities. We’ve most recently updated this data on 2/22/2022, but since COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving pandemic, contact your local senior living facility or Area Agency on Aging for more specific and up-to-date information.

Visitation Policies

Rules for Alabama Communities

Are loved ones allowed to visit to provide emotional support?

Not Available*

Are relatives allowed to visit for end-of-life care?

Not Available*

Are residents required to quarantine after visiting with a loved one?

Not Available*

Are visitors required to wear PPE (including masks) in order to visit residents?

Not Available*

Are non-medical contractors (such as hairdressers and entertainers) allowed in senior living facilities?

Not Available*

Are visitors checked for elevated temperatures?

Not Available*

Are visitors required to answer questions about health, travel, and potential virus contact?

Not Available*

*Note: This information was not available for this state, contact your local area agency on aging or senior living facility for more information.

Outings & Social Activities

Rules for Alabama Communities

Are residents allowed to leave (errands, visiting family, etc.) for non-medical reasons?

Not Available*

Are residents who leave required to quarantine when they return?

Not Available*

Are senior living communities required to cancel all group outings?

Not Available*

Are residents allowed to eat meals together in a common area?

Not Available*

Are residents allowed to gather in common areas for group activites?

Not Available*

*Note: This information was not available for this state, contact your local area agency on aging or senior living facility for more information.

COVID-19 Safety Measures for Staff and Residents

Rules for Alabama Communities

Are staff members regularly required to do a temperature check?

Not Available*

Are staff members regularly tested for COVID-19?

Not Available*

Are staff members members regularly required to do a health and safety screening, including questions about travel, contact with positive cases, etc?

Not Available*

Are residents regularly screened for COVID-19 symptoms?

Not Available*

Are residents regularly checked for elevated temperatures?

Not Available*

Are residents regularly tested for COVID-19?

Not Available*

*Note: This information was not available for this state, contact your local area agency on aging or senior living facility for more information.

Find Independent Living Communities in Alabama

Use the tool below to find Independent Living Communities near you – if you’d like to search in a specific city in Alabama, simply put that in the search bar below.

2014

Brookdale University Park Alabama

400 University Park Dr., Birmingham, AL, 35209

Brookdale University Park is described as a luxury senior living community. Located in one of Birmingham, Alabama’s quiet residential neighborhoods, this facility offers residents a life of peace and … (read more)
Brookdale University Park is described as a luxury senior living community. Located in one of Birmingham, Alabama’s quiet residential neighborhoods, this facility offers residents a life of peace and … (read more)

2017

Town Village Vestavia Hills

2385 Dolly Ridge Road, Birmingham, AL, 35243

Town Village Vestavia Hills was very nice; it was beautiful. The only objection I had to that place was that it had no patio or balconies; that was why I wouldn’t have chosen that one. The rooms were … (read more)
Town Village Vestavia Hills was very nice; it was beautiful. The only objection I had to that place was that it had no patio or balconies; that was why I wouldn’t have chosen that one. The rooms were … (read more)

2015, 2022

Galleria Woods

3850 Galleria Woods Drive, Birmingham, AL, 35244

The Leadership Team was fantastic! They welcomed me and shared the facility with great information and always with a cheerful heart. They assisted me with the refurbishment choices for my apartment pr … (read more)
The Leadership Team was fantastic! They welcomed me and shared the facility with great information and always with a cheerful heart. They assisted me with the refurbishment choices for my apartment pr … (read more)

The Bluffs at Greystone

6328 Farley Ln, Birmingham, AL, 35242

The Bluffs at Greystone assisted living facility offers premiere accommodations in Birmingham’s upscale suburbs. The diverse activities calendar paired with the outstanding amenities create … (read more)
The Bluffs at Greystone assisted living facility offers premiere accommodations in Birmingham’s upscale suburbs. The diverse activities calendar paired with the outstanding amenities create … (read more)

Skyline Village at Red Mountain

260 Goodwin Crest Dr, Birmingham, AL, 35209

The first time I ever drove over to Skyline Village at Red Mountain to look at it, I thought I’d always wanted to live in a castle. When you go in there, the people are so nice, both the ones that liv … (read more)
The first time I ever drove over to Skyline Village at Red Mountain to look at it, I thought I’d always wanted to live in a castle. When you go in there, the people are so nice, both the ones that liv … (read more)

Cahaba Ridge Retirement Community

3090 Healthy Way, Birmingham, AL, 35243

Cahaba Ridge Retirement Community is an independent living facility. This is just strictly apartment living, although they offer everything that you could imagine that you would ever want. There’s foo … (read more)
Cahaba Ridge Retirement Community is an independent living facility. This is just strictly apartment living, although they offer everything that you could imagine that you would ever want. There’s foo … (read more)

Somerby At St. Vincent’s One Nineteen

200 One Nineteen Blvd., Birmingham, AL, 35242

I visited Somerby At St. Vincent’s One Nineteen. I was impressed with the community and the way the residents seemed to really enjoy living there. They enjoyed each other. The facility itself is very … (read more)
I visited Somerby At St. Vincent’s One Nineteen. I was impressed with the community and the way the residents seemed to really enjoy living there. They enjoyed each other. The facility itself is very … (read more)

2013

St. Martin’s In the Pines

4941 Montevallo Road, Birmingham, AL, 35210

St. Martin’s In the Pines was very, very nice. The staff was extremely nice and welcoming. We just visited there, and they gave us a packet. We had a friend of ours that lived there. They showed us he … (read more)
St. Martin’s In the Pines was very, very nice. The staff was extremely nice and welcoming. We just visited there, and they gave us a packet. We had a friend of ours that lived there. They showed us he … (read more)

Kirkwood by the River

3605 Ratliff Rd, Birmingham, AL, 35210

Relaxing during retirement is easy at Kirkwood by the River. Nestled in the heart of Birmingham, Alabama, this facility is just miles outside of the city near Jefferson Park. This community offers bot … (read more)
Relaxing during retirement is easy at Kirkwood by the River. Nestled in the heart of Birmingham, Alabama, this facility is just miles outside of the city near Jefferson Park. This community offers bot … (read more)

Regency Retirement Village – Birmingham

285 West Oxmoor Road, Birmingham, AL, 35209

My brother is in Regency Retirement Village. He seems to like being there. Their director is very, very kind, and considerate. She stayed there when he was being discharged from the hospital so that I … (read more)
My brother is in Regency Retirement Village. He seems to like being there. Their director is very, very kind, and considerate. She stayed there when he was being discharged from the hospital so that I … (read more)

2013

Morningside of Vestavia Hills

2435 Columbiana Road, Birmingham, AL, 35216

The size of the studio room in Morningside of Vestavia Hills was by far bigger than other ones. There were multiple activities and multiple amenities available as far as meals, transportation, and aff … (read more)
The size of the studio room in Morningside of Vestavia Hills was by far bigger than other ones. There were multiple activities and multiple amenities available as far as meals, transportation, and aff … (read more)

Mount Royal Towers

300 Royal Tower Drive, Birmingham, AL, 35209

I’m a resident of Mount Royal Towers. It’s clean, nice, and neat. The staff is OK. Unfortunately, they turn over once in a while. The dining area is clean and well maintained. The food is very accepta … (read more)
I’m a resident of Mount Royal Towers. It’s clean, nice, and neat. The staff is OK. Unfortunately, they turn over once in a while. The dining area is clean and well maintained. The food is very accepta … (read more)

Episcopal Place Apartments

1112 26th Street South, Birmingham, AL, 35205

I love Episcopal Place. They have lots of activities, provide rides to doctors appointments and they serve lunches. It’s just a lot of camaraderie, very nice place to live and maintenance is excelle … (read more)
I love Episcopal Place. They have lots of activities, provide rides to doctors appointments and they serve lunches. It’s just a lot of camaraderie, very nice place to live and maintenance is excelle … (read more)

Holiday Rocky Ridge

3517 Lorna Rd, Hoover, AL, 35216

My mother-in-law moved into Rocky Ridge last November. She likes it, we like it. The staff is caring. They have three meals per day. They have activities every day of the week, they can participate in … (read more)
My mother-in-law moved into Rocky Ridge last November. She likes it, we like it. The staff is caring. They have three meals per day. They have activities every day of the week, they can participate in … (read more)

Pleasant Villa Independent Living

3380 Park Road East, Pleasant Grove, AL, 35127

Pleasant Villa Independent Living was very nice, though it’s an older building. The person that took me around was very informative, and I enjoyed that also. It was a nice facility also, and I have no … (read more)
Pleasant Villa Independent Living was very nice, though it’s an older building. The person that took me around was very informative, and I enjoyed that also. It was a nice facility also, and I have no … (read more)

2015, 2017, 2021, 2022

Danberry at Inverness

235 Inverness Center Drive, Hoover, AL, 35242

Danberry at Inverness is a senior living facility offering independent living, assisted living, and memory care services in Hoover, AL. Around-the-clock onsite staff and nurses are available to assist … (read more)
Danberry at Inverness is a senior living facility offering independent living, assisted living, and memory care services in Hoover, AL. Around-the-clock onsite staff and nurses are available to assist … (read more)

The Crossings at Riverchase

2171 Parkway Lake Drive, Hoover, AL, 35244

My in-laws will be moving into The Crossings at Riverchase. The staff was very friendly and engaged. We heard good things from a couple of residents about the food. The units were all nicely laid out, … (read more)
My in-laws will be moving into The Crossings at Riverchase. The staff was very friendly and engaged. We heard good things from a couple of residents about the food. The units were all nicely laid out, … (read more)

Magnolia Village

424 Dean Lane, Gardendale, AL, 35071