I have lived in Tucson part time for about 12 years. Have lived in a house on the East side, sold it, and now live in an apartment a little east of center. My apartment is a 940 square foot 2 bedroom 2 bath in a gated community with on-site management. Cost is $740/month including water and hot water. With internet and heat my total cost is less than $900/month.
I have traveled to Phoenix many times. Would not want to live there. Tucson is a much more outdoor casual feel, with many more opportunities to do outdoor things.
If you want more information let me know how to reach you privately and I would be glad to give you as much info as I can. I know good gyms, good personal trainers, great hikes, good restaurants, good social organizations, etc etc.