Top 5 Affordable Cities to Buy a Home

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Looking for an affordable place to live? Consider these five cities, which offer some of the nation’s lowest median home prices, home insurance premiums, and property tax rates. But we don’t think affordability should mean sacrifice, so we chose cities with growing job markets that also offer plenty of leisure activities. Here are our top affordable cities, in no particular order:

St. Louis

St. Louis

This midwestern city makes our list not because of its low home insurance premiums and property tax but for its median home value of $95,000. St. Louis is a favorite for affordability due to the walkability of the downtown area as well as the low public transit fares. St. Louis is also home to more than 100 neighborhood parks for some free family fun. With the money you save, you can check out the city’s hopping brewery scene – don’t overlook Fitz’s Root Beer, either – or kick back at a St. Louis Cardinals game.

  • Median home price: $95,500
  • Average property tax:  $2,320
  • Average home insurance premiums: $984
  • Population: 318,172



This Ohio city ranks highly because of low home prices and below average home insurance premiums. Cincinnati has tons of perks including a growing economy – it’s home to 10 Fortune 500 companies, including Kroger Co. and The Procter & Gamble Company.  In your free time, visit the Cincinnati Zoo or one of the many great area museums. Looking to spend the day outside? Head over to The Dan Beard 5-Mile Riverwalk Trail and take in views of the Cincinnati skyline and the beautiful Ohio River.

  • Median home price: $96,100
  • Average property tax: $2,362
  • Average home insurance premiums: $702
  • Population: 296,550

3. Winston-Salem, NC


Between the low cost of living, the moderate climate and fast job growth, homebuyers can’t go wrong in Winston-Salem, NC. This southern city comes with a rich historical background, beautiful tree-lined streets and more 35 nearby wineries. Wine isn’t your thing? Head to Foothills Brewing in downtown Winston-Salem and try out some local craft beer. And don’t worry, there’s plenty of free family fun as well. On a nice day (which is not rare in NC), local residents recommend heading to Salem Lake for a little fishing or bike riding.

  • Median home price: $112,100
  • Average property tax: $1,462
  • Average home insurance premiums: $611
  • Population: 234,349

4. Tucson, AZ


Looking for an affordable desert oasis? Here you’ll find beautiful homes, sunny weather and plenty of things to do. Additionally, Tucson is home to a growing job market. In fact, in 2013 it was named the second best city to find a job by A great place for people with an active lifestyle, the city is surrounded by five mountain ranges where residents can go hiking, rock climbing or mountain biking. And if you need any more convincing, the city experiences an average of 350 days of sunshine per year.

  • Median home price: $130,500
  • Average property tax: $1,678
  • Average home insurance premiums: $625
  • Population: 524,295

5. Richmond, VA


Richmond makes our list because of its below average home insurance premiums and moderately priced homes – plus it’s a great place to put down roots. This up and coming city has a buzzing craft beer scene and a variety of farm-to-table restaurants. On weekends, residents can enjoy activities including rafting and kayaking on the James River or pedaling through some of Richmond’s many biking trails. Don’t forget historic sites including Monument Avenue and the Richmond Liberty Trail.

  • Median home price: $140,100
  • Average property tax: $2,202
  • Average home insurance premiums: $737
  • Population: 210,309

Ranking Criteria used the number of mentions on best places to live, most affordable places to live, and other lists to qualify the top 5 cities. We focused on mid-sized cities with populations ranging from 100,000-600,000.


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