The 25 Most Expensive Small Towns in America

Aerial view of Breckenridge, Colorado.
Aerial view of Breckenridge, Colorado. / nick1803/iStock via Getty Images

For urbanites struggling to afford rent, fantasizing about small town life can be tempting. Smaller communities in the U.S. have a reputation for being less expensive than the country's major metros. While this is certainly true for some places, the stereotype doesn't apply to every town with a population under 50,000. To see which small towns outprice some of America's biggest cities, check out the list below.

The folks at LendingTree dug into U.S. Census Bureau data to determine the most expensive towns in the U.S. The towns on the list all have populations between 10,000 and 50,000, and their costs are based on median home values.

Coming in at No.1 is Vineyard Haven, Massachusetts, where houses sell for a median price of $699,500. That's $85,000 more than the median price in Los Angeles—one of the most expensive cities in the U.S. Behind it is Breckenridge, Colorado, where houses average out to $579,600. In Jackson, Wyoming—the third spot on the list—median home prices land at $549,800.

In addition to the costly real estate, residents of these towns are often living on smaller salaries. The median home prices are 8.19 times higher on average than median household incomes in Vineyard Haven and Breckenridge—the largest gap of any areas on the list. Overall, home prices in the 50 most expensive U.S. towns are comparable to those of the 50 biggest metros—but city-dwellers may have more to spend. The median household income for towns on the list comes out to roughly $9000 less than the median income of the nation's largest cities.

There are many reasons to move to a smaller town, but cost isn't always one of them. If you still feel inspired to make a change after reading the list below, check out this list of the best places to live in America.

  1. Vineyard Haven, MA
  2. Breckenridge, CO
  3. Jackson, WY
  4. Steamboat Springs, CO
  5. Hailey, ID
  6. Gardenerville Ranchos, NV
  7. Hood River, OR
  8. Juneau, AK
  9. Easton, MD
  10. Los Alamos, NM
  11. Ketchikan, AK
  12. Kill Devil Hills, NC
  13. Fredericksburg, TX
  14. Ellensburg, WA
  15. Astoria, OR
  16. Sheridan, WY
  17. Brookings, OR
  18. Sandpoint, ID
  19. Newport, OR
  20. Williston, ND
  21. Prineville, OR
  22. Montrose, CO
  23. Taos, NM
  24. Dickinson, ND
  25. Laramie, WY

[h/t Travel + Leisure]