Birmingham : Alabama


What It Is Like to Retire in Birmingham

The largest city in Alabama,  named for one of the major industrial cities of the United Kingdom, Birmingham, Alabama has been nicknamed The Magic City. Until the end of the 1960s, Birmingham was one of the South's primary industrial centers, producing iron and steel as a major component of the railroad industry. Now, manufacturing is no longer quite as important, but Birmingham today ranks as one of the most prominent business centers in the Southeastern United States. It is also a bustling hub for the banking industry. Regions Financial, a Fortune 500 company, calls Birmingham home, along with five Fortune 1000 companies.

Birmingham is also a lively college town, home to The University of Alabama at Birmingham, the University of Alabama School of Medicine, and Samford University, among many others.  It serves as headquarters for the Southeastern Conference, a major collegiate athletic conference; Birmingham's college sports are therefore a large part of the city's bustling culture.

Of cities over a million, Birmingham has the second highest concentration of Christians, and the greatest ratio of Protestants, in the US. Photo of 16th Street Baptist Church, now a National Historic Landmark courtesy of Wikipedia and John Morse (public domain).

Watch this short Youtube video prepared by Visit USA:

Here is Topretirements Mini-Retirement Guide to Alabama


Where to Retire in Birmingham and Home Prices

There is at least one active adult community in Birmingham; see link at top left.

According to the National Association or Realtors, the median sale price of a home in Birmingham-Hoover was $276,200 during the 4th quarter of 2021.


What Is Special about Birmingham

Birmingham is the cultural center and entertainment capital of Alabama offering ballet, opera, museums and many festivals;  Birmingham Museum of Art is the largest art museum in the Southeast;  Birmingham's Childrens Theatre is one of the largest and oldest children's theatre in the country; Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame is located here with concerts, plays and jazz classes;  Downtown Birmingham is going through a cultural and economic rejuvenation with new shops, parks, and restaurants.


What Is Not Special about Birmingham

Crime in Birmingham is the tength highest in the country and is oftentimes ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the nation.  Birmingham's 10% sales tax rate is the highest of the nation's 100 largest cities.


Who Will Like Retirement in Birmingham

Retirees who looking for a college town and a below average cost of living.


Local Economy Is Driven by

Banking, construction, engineering and insurance companies, soft drink bottlers


Climate and Physical Environment


Birmingham is flanked by long parallel mountain ridges, including  the tailing ends of the Appalachian foothills and Ruffner Mountain, which is home to Ruffner Mountain Nature Center, one of the largest urban nature reserves in the United States.  Birmingham has a humid subtropical climate with hot summers, mild winters, and abundant rainfall. January temperatures are in low to mid 50’s, with  July temperatures in the low 90’s.


Restaurants & Cultural Scene

Birmingham is the cultural capital of Alabama, packed with museums and art galleries. The Alabama Symphony Orchestra, the Birmingham Concert Chorale, Opera Birmingham and Birmingham Ballet are among the cultural offerings, as well as historic film theaters, jazz theaters, and a large ampitheater.



Crime in Birmingham is one of the highest in the country.


Medical Facilities

Birmingham has several medical facilities including Birmingham VA Medical Center and the University of Alabama Hospital.



Birmingham has four major highways that service it along with Amtrak and the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport.  When compared to other cities, Birmingham is below average in walkability.


Valuable Links

Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham on Wikipedia


What people are saying about Birmingham

No Comments

Leave a Comment

To comment you must be a registered member of

Login Here


Create Your Free Membership Account

Suggest a community we want to know about your top retirement spots
Please note that all contributions to Topretirements may be edited, altered, or removed by other contributors. If you don't want your writing to be edited mercilessly, then don't submit it here. By submitting content and/or photographs here you agree to give the rights to use them in any manner without cost or attribution.You are also promising us that you wrote this yourself, or copied it from a public domain or similar free resource (see Project:Copyrights for details). DO NOT SUBMIT COPYRIGHTED WORK WITHOUT PERMISSION!

Copyright © 2006-2022 All Rights Reserved.