Cost of Living Too High? Consider Relocating Here
With lower than average costs of living and median home values, many homeowners are flocking to these cities to get more bang for their bucks.
If you are a member of the group of Americans being priced out of your city, just know that you are not alone. With rising costs of living nationwide, many homeowners are looking for alternative cities to relocate to. The sad reality is that many cities are becoming too expensive. Luckily, there are many areas in the U.S. that are much more affordable.
Here are the best states and cities to relocate to.
If you love year-round sunshine, Phoenix is the city for you. The greater Phoenix area sees more sunshine than nearly any other metro area in the country. With opportunities arising for both personal and professional development, it’s no wonder so many homeowners have flocked to this area. Many Californians relocate to Arizona when they retire due to the weather and the lower cost of living. Coupled with low state income tax, homeowners in Phoenix find their dollars going a lot farther than they would in San Francisco or Seattle, for example.
Although the median home value is roughly 21% higher than the national average according to USA Today, those costs will be negated by the lower cost of living. In a recent study by PayScale, they found that homeowners in Phoenix enjoy a 5% lower cost of living compared to the national average. Phoenix is a large city with a population of 4,762,603, but don’t let that deter you from moving here. The entire Phoenix metropolitan area is roughly 512 square miles, so there’s plenty of room for new homeowners in this desert oasis. With a desirability ranking of 7.3/10, it’s no wonder that this Arizona city attracts homeowners from far and wide.
Fort Myers, FL
The “City of Palms” is a great place to live, thanks to its excellent weather, beach access, budget-friendly housing, and lower cost of living. With 271 days of sunshine, it’s no wonder why Fort Myers is so highly ranked among retirees. No state income tax, a strong economy and job market, and small-business friendly attitudes are just a few of the benefits that many professionals in this region enjoy.
The Fort Myers real estate market has affordable options for both the working class and retirees alike. With the median home values being 11% lower than the national average in Fort Myers, many homeowners are looking to relocate land in this Florida city. The cost of living is roughly 4% lower than the national average here, so many residents enjoy higher savings accounts while enjoying countless activities that are guaranteed to keep you busy without needing to worry about the cost.
Tampa Bay residents enjoy laid-back lifestyles with the mixture of a large metropolitan feeling. Hot humid summers and mild winters leave residents happy year-round. Additionally, no state income tax or estate tax in Florida is a draw for many homeowners looking to relocate to a more affordable metro. Tampa is located on the Gulf of Mexico side of the state, so residents can enjoy year-round activities.
Homeowners enjoy a lower cost of living compared to most major cities, coming in 5% lower than the national average. The larger Tampa metropolitan area is home to just over 3 million people, but downtown Tampa itself only has a population of 477,000. The median home values are 4% lower than the national average here, so expect to get more bang for your buck.
Jacksonville is considered to be the largest metropolitan area in America by land mass. Residents consider Jacksonville to be a combination of South Georgia, which is just a few miles away, and central Florida, except it’s on the coast. The climate, demographics, and main industries are very different from almost any other part of the state. Low taxes, sunny weather, and a booming job market are just a few of the reasons many claim Jacksonville to be their favorite city in Florida.
You won’t find anyone saying Jacksonville is too expensive. The population of the greater Jacksonville metropolitan area is just above 1.5 million people. The median home values in Jacksonville are 3% lower than the national average, meaning homeowners can comfortably afford larger homes. Coupled with a 5% lower cost of living compared to the national average, many homeowners find themselves making their dollars go a lot further than they would in another city. With a desirability ranking of 7.9/10, it’s no surprise that many are thinking of Jacksonville as their next home.
San Antonio, TX
San Antonio is the second largest city in Texas, just behind Houston. A larger metropolitan area comes with a plethora of benefits and activities to enjoy. Cheap real estate, low taxes, mild weather, and a booming economy are just a few of the reasons San Antonio is attractive to those looking to relocate for affordability. San Antonio has an unemployment rate below both the national and state averages for Texas.
You’ll find your dollars go a lot farther than you may expect in San Antonio. The median home values are a whopping 10% lower than the national average. Additionally, the cost of living is 14% lower than the national average! If you are expecting to eat into your savings while relocating, you can rest comfortably knowing that you most likely won’t have to dip into any extra cash. With a 6.7/10 ranking on the desirability index coupled with a low cost of living, you may find yourself planning your next move here.
Austin has a contagious enthusiasm that goes unmatched. The “Keep Austin Weird” campaign has drawn in homeowners from across the country. Known for being an oasis for outdoor enthusiasts, Austin provides its residents with plenty to do. The climate in Austin, like most of Texas, is very hot during the summer and mild during the winter. Austin has become a tech hub and has earned the nickname “Silicon Hills” due to a cluster of large corporations in the metropolitan area.
This city is a moderately expensive place to live, but it also has comparably high wages to offset the cost of living which is 3% lower than the national average. Median home values are around 19% higher than the national average, making Austin the most expensive city in this list. The city has an unemployment rate of 3.1% which has remained constant since 2018. Austin ranks 7.8/10 on the desirability index, and 7/10 on the quality of life index, meaning homeowners are very satisfied in this region of the “Lone Star State.”
Nashville is a fantastic place to live, according to its citizens. “Music City” has a lot to offer potential homeowners; dozens of live music venues, a strong job market, and every type of cuisine are just a few draws. Did you know that Nashville is also one of the best cities for young professionals? Residents between the ages of 25 and 34 make up the largest demographic. Additionally, Nashville’s job market is hot, meaning finding a new career won’t be a problem for professionals looking to start fresh. Nashville is so attractive, that even Sundae recently launched operations in this market.
With a cost of living 3% lower than the national average, homeowners in this city can live comfortably in the “Vegas of the East.” Nashville ranked a 7.6/10 on the desirability index, and a 6/10 on the quality of life index. The caveat is that the median home values are 15% higher than the national average in Nashville, which can be traced to the current influx of homeowners relocating to this city.
Known as the “City of Oaks”, Raleigh is ranked as the second best place to live in the U.S. according to U.S. News. Raleigh has been slowly emerging as a large technology hub, but there are many career opportunities available with 24,000 new job openings annually. Additionally, education in Raleigh is some of the best in the nation. Raleigh is ranked as the second most educated city in America by Forbes in 2022.
The median home value in Raleigh is 4% higher than the national average. Luckily, that cost is offset by the lower cost of living which comes around 5% lower than the national average. Raleigh has a population of 1,959,006, but is rapidly growing to serve new homeowners looking to join the community. With a desirability ranking of 7.6/10 and a quality of life ranking of 6.9/10, it’s no wonder Raleigh is expanding at such a rapid rate.
Myrtle Beach, SC
It’s not just a vacation spot : it’s a lifestyle. Residents of Myrtle Beach make each day count by accessing a huge variety of restaurants, attractions, and entertainment options. Although Myrtle Beach is known as a vacation town, there is a wealth of professional opportunities for those looking to advance their careers. It’s no wonder that Myrtle Beach has a desirability ranking of 9.4/10. If you’re close to retirement, we strongly recommend you consider Myrtle Beach as your next destination.
Life is more fun when you can afford it. The cost of living is 7% lower than the national average, and the median home value is 37% lower. Coupled with a low tax rate, homeowners in Myrtle Beach find their savings go a lot further here than they would in the more populated metropolitan areas. With a total population of 463,987, life moves a bit slower on this side of the country. Myrtle Beach is highly rated among its residents, scoring a 9.4/10 on the desirability index.
Spread across 110 square miles and with a population of 774,500, Charleston is the largest city in the state. With a bustling job market with many openings in either the tech or hospitality sectors, many professionals have recently decided to make this South Carolina hub their new homes. Great weather, a smaller population, and lower tax rates are just a few of the driving factors for homeowners looking to relocate to a more affordable city. On top of all that, Sundae recently began helping homeowners in Charleston get better deals for their homes, so you’ll have an advocate on your side if you decide to make the move.
Although prices are higher than the national average, Charleston still ranks as one of the best cities in the U.S. to live. The cost of living in Charleston is only 4% higher than the national average, making this a popular destination for those relocating out of California and New York. The median home value is roughly 20% higher than the national average, so homeowners looking for a more affordable home may be discouraged. However, with a desirability index ranking of 7.5/10, it’s no wonder people are paying more to be here.
Greenville, SC is a charming city with a stress-free feel and plenty to see and do. Great food, bicycle-friendly infrastructure, and countless cultural events and locations are just a few of the benefits residents enjoy. Known for being a center for the arts, Greenville is attractive for its professional development and lower cost of living. Additionally, Greenville is very retirement-friendly, so people looking to make the most of their retirement savings find living here to be the best decision they made (for their wallets).
Greenville scores a 6.1/10 on the desirability index, and 6.3 in the quality of life index. The average cost of living is roughly 5% lower than the national average, so residents find their dollars go a lot farther in this city. With only 895,942 residents in the area, there is plenty of room for new homeowners looking for a more affordable city. The median home value is 37% lower than the national average, making Greenville the most affordable city on this list.
Sundae can help
If you want to explore moving, but want to sell off-market first, Sundae might be a great fit. Multiple offers for your house and quick closing timelines will help you maximize your profit and move as soon as you feel comfortable.