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How Much Does Sober Living Cost?

Medically Reviewed by: Charley Allen

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How Much Does Sober Living Cost copy

If you or a loved one are considering sober living as part of the recovery journey, you may wonder: “How much does sober living cost?” and “How can I afford it?”

A sober living home is a type of transitional housing that provides a safe, supportive, and structured environment for people recovering from substance abuse.

The associated costs of sober living homes vary based on location, amenities, and level of support provided.

What Is the Cost of Sober Living?

The cost of sober living homes can vary, but it averages between $300 to $2,500 per month.

Sober living homes, sometimes known as halfway houses or recovery residences, offer individuals recovering from addiction a supportive and drug-free environment to continue their journey toward sobriety.

Note that while many people use sober living and halfway houses interchangeably, they often denote different transitional living situations. Find more about halfway houses here.

They play a crucial role in helping residents maintain their newfound sobriety and reintegrate into society.

The sober living cost typically covers rent for shared accommodations, but it may not include all expenses.

Additional sober living costs may include utilities, food, transportation, personal care items, medication, and therapy.

Here are some approximate ranges of additional costs of sober living to consider:

  • Utilities: $50 to $200 or more per month

  • Food: $100 to $400 or more

  • Transportation: $50 to $300 or more

  • Personal Care Items:  $20 to $100 or more per month

  • Medication: A few dollars to upwards of hundreds (depending on brand name and health insurance coverage)

  • Therapy: $20 to $100 or more per session

Note that actual costs vary based on location, lifestyle, and specific needs.

How Do People Pay for Sober Living?

People pay for sober living through various means, including self-payment, financing, scholarships, grants, or state funding for low-income residents.

Others may allow residents to work or volunteer in exchange for reduced or waived fees.

Most sober living homes charge a monthly fee for rent, utilities, and other services. The cost may vary depending on the location, size, and amenities of the sober living home.

Some sober living homes may also require a security deposit or other fees when you move in.

How Do People Usually Pay Rent for Sober Living?

Here are some ways people usually pay for sober living:

Self-Payment Options

Many residents use their savings or emergency funds to cover the initial months in a sober living home until they secure regular employment.

Some homes may also offer self-pay discounts or flexible payment plans for people who can pay their sober living costs upfront or in larger installments.

Financing Options

For those with good credit, bank loans may be an option to help cover sober living expenses. However, carefully review the loan terms, including interest rates, to fully understand the financial commitment.

Scholarships and Grants

Some nonprofit organizations offer scholarships or grants to qualified applicants to assist with the cost of sober living.

Certain sober living facilities may also have scholarship programs to support underprivileged residents.

Government Assistance

Government agencies or local organizations may provide financial assistance or resources to individuals seeking recovery support.

Eligibility criteria and available programs vary, so we advise you to check with relevant agencies to explore potential assistance options.

Does Health Insurance Cover Sober Living?

Generally speaking, health insurance doesn’t cover sober living. While health insurance often covers various aspects of substance use disorder treatment, such as individual therapy or outpatient programs, sober living is a different matter.

This is because sober living homes are not typically considered formal medical facilities under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). They don’t usually provide medical treatment or supervision.

Of course, while sober homes are typically not covered by insurance, it’s still worth contacting your insurance provider to inquire about potential coverage options.

Many insurance plans may offer partial coverage for specific treatment services like individual therapy or outpatient rehabilitation programs.

Some health insurance plans may cover some of the services or amenities many sober living homes offer, like counseling, drug testing, or educational opportunities.

If you have health insurance, check to see what kind of coverage you have and what services or amenities are included in your plan.

Is Residing at a Sober Living Tax-Deductible?

The IRS does not categorize the expenses associated with residing at a sober living home as tax-deductible medical expenses. However, we still advise you to consult a tax professional or financial advisor to know your tax situation.

Tax laws can be complex, and there may be specific circumstances where certain expenses related to addiction rehab and recovery could be eligible for deductions.

For example, you may be able to deduct the cost of rent if you can prove that staying in a sober living environment is necessary for your medical care and recovery.

How to Know if You Can Afford A Sober Living Home

To know if you can afford a sober living home, you need to evaluate your financial situation and consider the cost of sober houses, income, and available resources.

As we mentioned before, sober living costs can vary widely. To make an informed decision, create a detailed budget and explore various payment options, including self-payment, financing, scholarships, grants, or government assistance.

Seek guidance from financial counselors or the staff at the sober housing to ensure you can cover the costs throughout your stay.

How to Know if You Can Afford A Sober Living Home

What Services and Amenities Are Included in the Cost of Staying at a Sober Living Home?

Sober living houses are designed to provide a safe and supportive environment for people recovering from substance abuse.

Some of the standard services and amenities included in the cost of staying at a sober living home include:

  • Furnished room with a bed, closet, dresser, and sometimes a TV

  • Bathroom with basic toiletries

  • Kitchen with appliances, utensils, dishes, and sometimes food

  • Living room with furniture, books, games, and sometimes a TV

  • Laundry room with washer and dryer

  • Shared yard or garden with outdoor furniture and sometimes a grill

  • Wi-Fi and phone

  • Access to transportation or public transit

  • Access to counseling, therapy, support groups, or 12-step meetings

  • Drug testing or breathalyzer tests

  • Educational or vocational programs or resources

  • Recreational or social activities or events

Most of these will be shared with other residents.

Some sober living homes may also offer additional services and amenities like a private room or bathroom, personal appliances, safe or lockbox, gym membership or equipment, pool or spa, catering service, car service, or concierge,

These may require an extra fee or a higher rent. It would help to ask the sober living home manager or owner about the details and costs before you decide to move in.

What Is the Difference Between Sober Living and Addiction Treatment?

The difference between sober living and addiction treatment is that sober living is a living arrangement. In contrast, addiction treatment is a formal program that provides medical and psychological care.

Sober living homes are places where people who have completed addiction treatment can live in a sober environment with others who share their goal of staying abstinent from drugs and alcohol.

They can also provide additional support for people who are in early recovery and need a sober place to stay.

Many sober homes cost less than rehabilitation treatment facilities but offer less supervision and structure.

Residents pay rent, buy groceries, and follow house rules that usually include attending house meetings, participating in chores, and abstaining from intoxicating substances.

Many sober living homes require residents to regularly attend 12-step meetings or other forms of peer support.

Addiction treatment, on the other hand, is a more intensive and comprehensive approach to addressing addiction’s underlying causes and consequences.

These rehabilitation programs typically involve a combination of medication, therapy, education, and aftercare services. These are often covered by insurance but can also be expensive and time-consuming.

Many people who complete treatment benefit from moving to a sober living house afterward to help them transition to everyday life and prevent relapse.

Both sober living and addiction treatment are important components of the recovery process. They are not mutually exclusive but complementary options to help people achieve and maintain a sober life.

Depending on the individual’s needs, preferences, and circumstances, they may enter a sober living home before, during, or after completing addiction treatment.

Begin Your Recovery in a Supportive Sober Living Home

If you or a loved one is ready to take the vital step towards lasting sobriety, Design for Recovery Sober Living Home is here to help.

Our structured and caring environment offers more than just a place to stay. We provide comprehensive support, including one-on-one mentoring, medication monitoring, family services, employment support, and money management.

Don’t let financial concerns hold you back. Contact Design for Recovery today and find a solution that works for you on your recovery journey.

Abraham, Amanda J., et al. “The Affordable Care Act Transformation of Substance Use Disorder Treatment.” American Journal of Public Health, vol. 107, no. 1, 2016, pp. 31-32, Accessed 8 Sept. 2023.

Polcin, Douglas L., et al. “What Did We Learn from Our Study on Sober Living Houses and Where Do We Go from Here?” Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, vol. 42, no. 4, 2010, p. 425, Accessed 8 Sept. 2023.

Publication 502 (2022), Medical and Dental Expenses | Internal Revenue Service.

“Substance Use and Mental Health Block Grants.” SAMHSA,

Treatment, Center For Substance Abuse. “Chapter 5—Specialized Substance Abuse Treatment Programs.” A Guide to Substance Abuse Services for Primary Care Clinicians – NCBI Bookshelf, 1997,


Edited by: David Beasley

David Beasley - Design for Recovery

David Beasley is a certified RADT (Registered Alcohol/Drug Technician). David, moved to California from North Carolina after many failed attempts to get sober.

Medically Reviewed by: Charley Allen

Charley earned his Masters of Clinical Psychology from Antioch University, Los Angeles, and is a California Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT).He teaches mindfulness to both adults and children in group setting such as schools, corporate workplaces, and medical treatment facilities.

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