Cost of living in the United States can be expensive. Living close to an abundance of entertainment options, bars, shopping, and excellent schools comes with a price. For instance, a one bedroom 750 square foot condominium in downtown Chicago can be priced upward of $250,000, while a three bedroom 1,800 square foot home in Fishers, IN costs around the same price. That's quite the difference in real estate! While some can afford to live in a deluxe apartment in the sky, most Americans want to stretch their paycheck and live comfortably. We've taken into account the cost of groceries, transportation, utilities, and healthcare and compiled a list of the most affordable states to live in.

Indiana

indianapolis

Cost of Living Index: 85.3 out of 100

Groceries Index: 92.1 out of 100

Utilities Index: 89 of out 100

Transportation Index: 99 out of 100

Healthcare Index: 97 out of 100

Home of the Indianapolis 500 and the Indiana Pacers, the average home is priced at $131,100. Additionally, you can rent a 3 bedroom apartment for $1,100 a month. The most popular city in Indiana is its state capital Indianapolis. Here you'll be able to find a home for $127,000 and an apartment for $1,021. As far as entertainment, downtown Indianapolis is bustling with personality. Head to the Taste of Indy in the summer and enjoy a concert at Hilbert Circle Theater in the winter.

Fun Fact: The first professional baseball game was played in Fort Wayne, IN.

Texas

texas

Cost of Living Index: 90.4

Groceries Index: 89.6

Utilities Index: 96

Transportation Index: 97

Healthcare Index: 97

The Lone Star state is the place to relocate. Home prices average at $184,200, and if you plan on renting it would cost you around $1,453. One of the cheapest town in Texas to live in is Harlingen, where the average home is priced at a very modest $86,300 and rent is as low as $940. Although this town is small with a population of 64,849, it is filled with interesting things like the Harlingen D'Arte Centre Galley where you can browse the work of local artists and the Iwo Jima Monument and Museum where you can marvel in our country's history.

Fun Fact: More wool comes from Texas than any other state in the U.S.

Louisiana

louisiana

Cost of Living Index: 90

Groceries Index: 95.1

Utilities Index: 85

Transportation Index: 98

Healthcare Index: 94

Louisiana is another southern state where the cost of living is affordable. The average home in Louisiana is valued at $144,800, and the median property tax is $1,280. In addition, you can rent a 2 bedroom home for $1,295. If you want to be immersed in Cajun and Creole culture and live comfortably, then Layfayette is perfect. There are endless entertainment and dining options, including the award-winning Prejeans.

Fun Fact: Louisiana was named after King Louis XIV.

Oklahoma

oklahoma

Cost of Living Index: 84

Groceries Index: 94.4

Utilities Index: 92

Transportation Index: 96

Healthcare Index: 96

This budget-friendly state is an ideal place to raise a family with single family homes averaging at $119,500. If you're looking to rent, you can rent a 2 bedroom home for as low as $940. One of best places to live in Oklahoma is Tulsa. The "Oil Capital of the World" is strong in key industries including energy, aviation, finance, technology, and telecommunications. Also, if you are a lover of art, then you will be delighted with the Philbrook Museum of Art.

Fun Fact: It's a twister! The movie "Twister" was set in Oklahoma.

Arkansas

arkanas

Cost of Living Index: 83

Groceries Index: 94.8

Utilities Index: 93

Transportation Index: 93

Healthcare Index: 90

Nicknamed "The Natural State", Arkansas is known for its superb outdoor recreation opportunities and modest living. The average value for a home in Arkansas is $121,700. For those wanting to rent, a 3 bedroom home can cost as low as $1,000 a month. There are many attractive towns in Arkansas to live; however, its most appealing city is its capital, Little Rock. Little Rock has a plethora of attractions and annual events, including the Little Rock Film Festival and the Arkansas Comic-Con. Whether you're an outdoor enthusiast or a pop culture maven, you'll never get bored in Little Rock.

Fun Fact: Walmart was founded in Bentonville, AR in 1962.

Tennessee

tennessee

Cost of Living Index: 88

Groceries Index: 94.4

Utilities Index: 91

Transportation Index: 94

Healthcare Index: 92

Tennessee is abundant in natural beauty, culture, entertainment, and innovation. In addition, the Volunteer state is home to great schools and a flourishing job market. Most importantly, its cost of living is affordable. Home values average at $157,900, and the average rent is as cheap as $1,146. Memphis is a hotspot to live and work, which makes it ideal for young adults and working professionals. In addition, entertainment, recreation opportunities, and dining destinations are endless.

Fun Fact: Elvis Presley's home, Graceland is located in Memphis. Graceland is the second most visited house in the United States.

Kansas

kansas

Cost of Living Index: 85.8

Groceries Index: 91.7

Utilities Index: 88

Transportation Index: 95

Healthcare Index: 91

Known as "America's Breadbasket", Kansas produces one-fifth of all wheat grown in the United States. Also, the cost of living in the Wheat State is some of the cheapest in the country. The average home value is $133,200, and the average rent list price is $1,100. A popular city in Kansas is its capital Topeka, where homes go for $106,900 and a 4 bedroom home can be rented for $895 a month. That's such a steal, right? In addition to its affordable living, Topeka has family-friendly attractions including the Evel Knievel Museum and annual festivals like the Capital City Family and Food Truck Festival.

Fun Fact: The first woman mayor in the United States was Susan Madora Salter, who was elected to office in Argonia, KS in 1887.

Iowa

iowa

Cost of Living Index: 87.5

Groceries Index: 95.6

Utilities Index: 91

Transportation Index: 98

Healthcare Index: 96

Among one of the safest places to live in the United States, Iowa is one of the most comfortable and affordable states for families and singles. A home in Iowa averages at $138,300, and a spacious 1 bedroom apartment is is as low as $1,045 a month. Cedar Rapids is ideal for both young people and retirees. It is rich in arts, entertainment, and recreation. From enjoying a concert at U.S. Cellular Center or shopping at The Czech Village district, Cedar Rapids always has something to offer.

Fun Fact: The largest cereal company in the world, Quaker Oats is located in Cedar Rapids.

Alabama

alabama

Cost of Living Index: 87

Groceries Index: 99

Utilities Index: 100

Transportation Index: 95

Healthcare Index: 88

Alabama is the best place to call sweet home. The average price for a home in the Heart of Dixie is $126,500 and a rental property can go for $1,025 a month. Some of the best places to live in Alabama include Montgomery, Birmingham, and Mobile. However, the most affordable town to live in is Huntsville. Nicknamed "Rocket City", the median home value in Huntsville is $148,900 and a 4 bedroom home can be rented for $995 a month. If that wasn't enough to convince you of Rocket City's value, Huntsville is an up and coming hub for technology, which is a huge advantage to the city's economy.

Fun Fact_: _ Alabama workers built the first rocket that put humans on the moon.

Mississippi

mississippi

Cost of Living Index: 84.5

Groceries Index: 93.1

Utilities Index: 105

Transportation Index: 96

Healthcare Index: 93

Mississippi oozes with southern charm and charisma. Residents enjoy warm weather, waterways, and affordable living. The home value index for the Magnolia State is $120,700 and rent for a 2 bedroom apartment is $1,025. Jackson is appealing for most with its strong economy in manufacturing, healthcare, food processing, and distribution, and its rich culture. Most importantly, the median listing price for homes in Jackson is $140,000.

Fun Fact: Root beer was invented in Biloxi in 1898.

Rural vs. City

When deciding on where you relocate to, it is essential to consider whether you want the hustle and bustle of city life or the quiet and modesty of a rural area. While there are many perks that come with both, it is important to take the following into considering.

Income and Housing

Median income great differs between urban and rural workers. According to the U.S Census Bureau, rural households have a lower income than city households ($52,386 compared to $54,296). Moreover, those in a rural area had lower monthly costs. In fact, 44% of rural homeowners owned their homes with no mortgage or loan compared to 33% of city homeowners who did not have a mortgage or loan.

Lifestyle

Whether the city or rural life is for you depends on your lifestyle. Those who want a enjoy a slower paced or peaceful surroundings usually favor rural towns. Although if you enjoy busier and more lively atmospheres, the city life may perfect be for you.

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