Where are the cheapest places to live in the U.S.? And where are the best places for frugal living? Actually, your options are wide open. It really depends on your own priorities.
In other words, what are the areas of life where you want to save the most money? In contrast, what things do you like to splurge on?
You can weigh costs and savings in accordance with your own lifestyle. Then you can use that information to find the cheapest cities and states unique to you.
Frugal Lifestyle: Cost of a Home
According to a Reader’s Digest roundup of the states where your money goes furthest, Ohio is the place to live. At least, it is if you want to be an affordable home. The average price of a home in the United States is almost $220,000. In contrast, the average home price in Ohio is less than $131,000.
Of course, the house itself isn’t the only cost of homeownership. While it’s not cheap to purchase a home in Hawaii, you do get some perks. In fact, Hawaii has the lowest cost for both property taxes and home insurance fees. If your frugal lifestyle includes life on a beach, then this isn’t a bad place to choose.
That said, Alabama has the second-lowest cost for property taxes. Furthermore, the houses there are a lot less expensive than in Hawaii. Likewise, Louisiana has relatively affordable housing. Moreover, this state has the lowest utility bills. Another option is to get a house in Texas.
What if you’re a renter? Missouri has the most affordable rates to rent a home.
Frugal Lifestyle: Work and Business
Perhaps you feel confident that you can find the affordable home you want in almost any state. Another key factor to consider is work.
North Carolina has low business costs including some of the nation’s lowest labor costs. Therefore, if starting a business is part of your frugal lifestyle plan, then this is a state to consider.
Iowa has the lowest unemployment rate, which is important if earning a steady paycheck is critical to your financial plan.
Frugal Lifestyle: Education
College is expensive. Frugal living includes looking at costs like education. People in Utah have the lowest amount of student loan debt.
However, Wyoming has the most affordable in-state college tuition. That said, the city of San Francisco offers free community college tuition to residents. Unfortunately, it’s a pricey city to live in.
Frugal Lifestyle: Health
Health is critical to wellbeing. New Mexico has the most affordable health care of any state in the nation. Other states that rank well on the list include California, Utah, Texas, and Pennsylvania.
Frugal Lifestyle: Getting Around
What if you want to own a car? Oregon doesn’t have state sales tax. Therefore, it’s one of the best places to purchase large ticket items, including cars. However, Maine has the lowest cost of car insurance.
If you are more interested in public transportation, you might want to look at the unlikely state of Oklahoma. Some cities there offer free public transit. Furthermore, costs are lower across all forms of transit from trains to planes.
Frugal Lifestyle: Overall Life Experience
Of course, most people who want to live frugally will consider reducing expenses in all areas. There are some states that make that easier than others do. For example,
- In Texas, you only need an annual salary of $40,000 to live comfortably. That’s less than the state’s median income.
- Kentucky ranks second for the most affordable cost of living. The goods you need don’t cost much there.
- Tennessee is the most affordable state to raise a family in.
- Florida has low costs for healthcare and home, which is one reason why it’s affordable to retire there.
- Wisconsin has low mortgage rates. Furthermore, people living there have high credit scores.
In order to determine the best place to live, you really have to think about your own lifestyle. If you don’t have or want children, then it probably doesn’t matter where it costs least to raise a family. In contrast, if you have health concerns, it could be worth it to move to a state that has low health insurance fees.
Most importantly, no matter where you live, work to find the lowest cost on the things that matter most to you. Additionally, aim to build up your emotional wealth. Learn more about that here.
Where do you think is the best place to live a frugal lifestyle? Share with us in the comments below.
Kathryn Vercillo is a professional writer who loves to live a balanced life. She appreciates a good work-life balance. She enjoys balance in her relationships and has worked hard to learn how to balance her finances to allow for a balanced life overall. Although she’s only blonde some of the time, she’s always striving for total balance. She’s excited to share what she’s learned with you and to discover more together along the way.