Bidding adieu to your costly big city existence and settling down in an affordable, idyllic small town might seem especially enticing these days. Not only have rents become almost laughably high in some places, but remote work has enabled people to relocate far from the office—or any office, as it were.
That said, real estate in many small towns isn’t all that cheap; plus, plenty of people actually prefer city living. Fortunately, not all metro areas are as expensive as somewhere like New York City. Stacker recently analyzed Realtor.com listing prices from June 2022 for all kinds of properties—from regular houses to condos—and calculated the median price for each of the 250 biggest metro areas in the U.S. “Metros include the central city as well as its surrounding towns and suburbs,” Stacker’s Leesa Davis wrote.
The overwhelming takeaway from the research is this: If you want to buy a home in a city without breaking the bank, refine your search to the Rust Belt. That’s where nine of the top 10 most affordable metros are, and the single outlier—Davenport, Iowa, in ninth place—is right next door.
State-wise, Illinois and Ohio were the clear winners, each with three cities on the list. Ohio’s top performer was Youngstown, in second place with a median listing price of $146,750. Toledo and Canton—the latter of which is home to the Pro Football Hall of Fame—took seventh and eighth place, respectively. In Illinois, Peoria proved least expensive, coming in fourth place with a median listing price of just over $157,000.
But nothing could quite compete with the $143,950 median price tag on properties in Terre Haute, Indiana. The area, which boasts Indiana State University within its borders, landed in the top spot. See the rest of the list below, and find out more about what each entry has to offer via Stacker.
- Terre Haute, Indiana // $143,950
- Youngstown, Ohio // $146,750
- Charleston, West Virginia // $151,430
- Peoria, Illinois // $157,250
- Springfield, Illinois // $164,900
- (Tie) Saginaw, Michigan // $164,900
- Toledo, Ohio // $169,900
- Canton, Ohio // $174,950
- Davenport, Iowa // $176,450
- Champaign, Illinois // $179,950