Home affordability can vary greatly from place to place, especially with the taxes, utilities, and other unique expenses associated with a particular city. So many variables can make finding the cheapest state to buy a home difficult.
While a region may have more expensive real estate prices, there are also wage differences to offset these prices.
Are you looking for the cheapest state to buy a home? We used income and home price data to determine the 15 most affordable states in the country.
For a closer look: read ourThe most affordable cities to buy a house in 2023.
Read on to see which states are at the top and plan your next one.interstate moving.
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15 cheapest states to buy a house
- Median Home Price: $147,800
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 702
Iowa topped our list of America's Most Affordable Homes. It only takes 10.6 percent of median household income to pay for a home in the Hawkeye State. The houses are only $147,800.
This Midwestern state is the nation's top corn producer, and its miles of farmland are proof of that. Still, there are also plenty of big cities to live in. Iowa's largest real estate markets include Des Moines, Iowa City, and Cedar Rapids.
Check out Iowa mortgage rates.
- Median Home Price: $141,700
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 673,23
Indiana ranks second with a median price of $141,700. It only takes 11.03% of median income to buy a home in Indiana. The estimated monthly mortgage payment is just over $670.
Another Midwestern state, Indiana, is flat and full of farmland. Its largest cities are Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, and Bloomington, and major universities such as Purdue, Ball State, and Indiana University are located there.
See Indiana mortgage rates.
- Median Home Price: $145,700
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 692,24
Ohio continues the Midwestern trend and ranks third on our list. Buckeye State only requires 11% of the average worker's income to purchase a home. Home prices are at $145,700.
The birthplace of the Wright brothers and home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Ohio certainly has a lot to offer. The state is also big in football, with most residents supporting the Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, or Ohio State Buckeyes.
See Ohio mortgage rates.
- Median Home Price: $155,800
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 740,22
In Nebraska, residents will spend just 11.19% of their income (about $740.22) on the average home mortgage payment. Home prices in the state are below $156,000
If its nickname, Cornhusker State, is any indication, Nebraska is big on growing corn. Its cattle industry is booming and it is also called the “Meat State”. The largest cities in Nebraska are Omaha and Lincoln.
View mortgage rates in Nebraska.
- Median Home Price: $151,900
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 721,70
Kansas and Nebraska are technically tied for fourth place, each costing 11.19% of median household income to buy a home. However, houses in Kansas are priced lower. The median home costs $151,900 in this state.
Kansas is amusingly known as the "breadbasket" of the nation for its bountiful wheat fields and grain production. Kansas City, Wichita, and Topeka are the largest cities in the state.
Check out Kansas mortgage rates.
- Median home price: $119,000
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 565,38
Homes are slightly less affordable in Mississippi than they are in Kansas and Nebraska. Here, 11.31% of the average family income is needed to buy a house. Home prices are around $119,000.
Mississippi is known as the Magnolia State thanks to its flowering tree. It is also one of the top producers of catfish and is full of southern charm. Its largest cities are Jackson and Biloxi.
Check out Mississippi mortgage rates.
7. Virginia Occidental
- Median Home Price: $119,600
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 568,23
In West Virginia, the houses are at the same point as the Mississippi. It takes 11.31% of median household income to buy a home, and the typical home costs just under $120,000.
Aptly named the Mountain State, West Virginia is located in the Appalachians. It is known for its hills, valleys, and mountains, and all the outdoor activities that come with them.
View mortgage rates in West Virginia.
- Median Home Price: $136,800
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 649,95
Oklahoma homes are slightly less affordable than Mississippi homes, coming in at 11.64% of median household income. The typical home costs $136,600, nearly twice the state median income.
Oklahoma is known for its deep Native American history. The name "Oklahoma" comes from the Choctaw language, and the state is still home to many reservations. The state also has a large college football scene, with most cheering for the University of Oklahoma or Oklahoma State.
Check Oklahoma Mortgage Rates.
- Median Home Price: $154,900
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 735,95
In Michigan, a median-priced home requires just 11.73% of typical household income, which is $75,300. Home prices average $154,900 in the state.
The state is best known for the Great Lakes and its automobile production, which takes place in Detroit's Motor City.
See Michigan mortgage rates.
- Median Home Price: $127,800
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 607,19
It takes 12% of the median household income to buy a home in Arkansas. Home prices are around $129,000 and the median mortgage payment is $607.19.
Arkansas is known for its acres of lakes, as well as its hot springs and rivers. The state also produces most of the country's poultry and is known as "The Land of Opportunity."
View mortgage rates in Arkansas.
- Median Home Price: $142,700
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 677,99
Alabama ranks 11th as the cheapest state to buy a home. In the Cotton State, homes make up just 12.2% of median household income. Home prices are at $142,700.
If you're craving that true southern feeling, Alabama is the place to be. Known for soccer, southern hospitality, and sprawling ranch-style homes withlimit the resource,you'll feel right at home in major cities like Montgomery, Birmingham or Mobile.
Check out Alabama mortgage rates.
12. North Dakota
- Median Home Price: $193,900
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 921,24
North Dakota homes only require 12.27% of median household income to buy a home, putting it 12th on our list of cheapest states to live in. The typical home costs $193,900 and the median income is just over $90,000.
The state is widely known for its wheat production and is one of the least populated states in the country. It is named after the Dakota Sioux who lived in the area.
View mortgage rates in North Dakota.
- Median home price: $141,000
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 669,91
Kentucky households earn just 12.35% of typical household income, which amounts to $65,100. An average home is $141,000, making it our 13th cheapest state to buy a home in.
Kentucky, also known as the Bluegrass State, is known for its horse racing, tobacco farming, fried chicken, and coal mining. The largest cities in the state are Louisville, Lexington, and Frankfort.
View mortgage rates in Kentucky.
- Median Home Price: $157,200
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 746,88
A median-priced home in Missouri only requires 12.4% of the typical household income in the state. Home prices exceed $157,000 while the average family earns $72,300 a year.
Show-Me State is known for its blues and jazz scenes, as well as its world-famous barbecue. The state's Anheuser-Busch company is the largest brewer in the country.
See Missouri mortgage rates.
15. Dakota del Sur
- Median Home Price: $167,100
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment:$ 793,91
In South Dakota, you'll pay just 12.62% of your income to buy a median-priced home, which costs $157,200. The typical mortgage payment is only $800 a month.
Known as the Mount Rushmore State, it's clear what a South Dakota national monument is famous for. The state also boasts the highest point in the Rocky Mountains and has a booming agricultural industry producing corn, soybeans, wheat, pork, and beef.
View mortgage rates in South Dakota.
The 5 most expensive states to buy a house
You may be surprised at the costs of the house whenmake an offer on a housein those states. The prices of these houses are above the affordable prices mentioned above. This is usually due to population expansion, tight supplies, increased demand, or a combination of all three.
- Median Home Price: $615,300
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment: $2,923.36
Hawaii holds the title of the least affordable state to buy a home. Residents of the island state pay a staggering 35.15% of median income to buy a home. The average home in Hawaii costs $615,300.
Known for its pristine beaches and incredible weather, Hawaii is a coveted location for tourists and residents alike. The state has six islands, with the big island, the island of Hawaii, being the largest.
- Median home price: $505,000
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment: $2,399.32
California is known for its high housing costs, so its place on our most expensive list comes as no surprise. It takes almost 32% of the median household income to buy a home here.
Nicknamed the Golden State for its gold rush days, California is the most populous state in the country. It is home to major cities like Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, and Sacramento.
- Median Home Price: $312,200
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment: $1,483.30
Our third most expensive state is Oregon, where it takes 21.92% of the median household income of $81,200 to buy a home. The typical home costs a little over $312,000.
Oregon is known for its rain, lush forests, variety of lakes and canyons, and miles of coastline. It is home to major cities such as Portland and Salem (not to be confused with Salem, Massachusetts, where the Salem witch trials took place).
- Median home price: $339,000
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment: $1,610.63
Another west coast state ranks fourth most expensive states to live in. In Washington, it takes just over 21% of the median income to buy a home. The typical house costs $339,000.
Known as the Evergreen State for its abundant forests, Washington State has no shortage of hiking opportunities. The state is big on fruit production (apples, mind you) and is home to Seattle, the 18th largest city in the country.
- Median Home Price: $343,300
- Estimated monthly mortgage payment: $1,631.06
Rounding out the five most expensive places to buy a home is Colorado, the fourth western state to make the list. The typical worker spends more than 21% of their income (about $93,000 on average) to buy a home here.
Colorado is known for its towering mountains and thriving ski towns like Aspen, Vail, and Telluride. The state is also home to major cities such as Denver, Boulder, and Colorado.
Ready to buy a house?
Buying a home that is out of budget is a common mistake for first-time homebuyers. Now that you know the cheapest states to buy a house, have you decided where you want to live? We also published a data study on theThe best cities to live for young professionals..
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We use data on median home value and median household income to determine what percentage of household income paid the monthly mortgage payment in each state to determine affordability.
We assume that all home mortgages were purchased with a 30-year loan and a 4% interest rate for the purposes of this study.
Fuentes: World Population Revision|HUD