America's cheapest (livable) cities

These 10 places combine low housing prices, a reasonable cost of living and high quality of life.

By Elaine Pofeldt, SwitchYard Media

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VIDEO ON MSN MONEY

96Comments
Oct 12, 2013 12:09AM
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I have lived in Idaho falls for 20 plus years now. I would hate to live in a house I bought for 52 thousand. it would be in the absolute worse part of town and all my stuff would get stolen. not to mention the meth lab I would be living next to. oh and just an F.Y.I. I have never seen a house that sold for 52 grand in Idaho falls. well maybe 20 years ago. so that being said, I wonder how many other stories you people write that are sooooo misleading.

Oct 11, 2013 7:31PM
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What about the weather in these towns?  Glancing at them, my first impression is high heating and/or air conditioning bills.

 

 

Oct 11, 2013 7:21PM
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Pueblo, CO is a dumpy town, heavily poor Hispanic in character, Gang-crime, Meth-Problems,...

The white people started their own town, Pueblo West...it's like night and day. Incidentally, quite a few Medal of Honor Recipients were from Pueblo.

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The Steel Mill "declined" in the 80's and while various companies have owned it since, it employs nothing like the 8,000 plus people it did at one time.

Just a few years ago Pueblo went over the 50% Latino mark and is about 51% Latino, 48% white and 1% other now.

The climate has changed from the late 70's when I moved there when I was a kid. It use to be really windy all of the time, in the Bridle Trail area anyway:)  It snowed pretty good in the winter and a foot plus of snow was common and that isn't the case anymore. Except for an occasional snow storm every five years or so I guess now? Pueblo sometimes will only get a light dusting in the winter.

It will always rain during the Colorado State fair, that is just a given. lol  The temps have stayed pretty much the same in the summer though. You are looking at high 90's to 102/103 temps at times during the summer.

You can get away with a swamp cooler in some parts of the city as an offset to utility bills however, the size of the Pueblo Reservoir has been enlarged since then and the humidity in certain areas will void the use of a swamper.

City Park is still a  nice option for families as there is a pool, ball fields and a golf course with club house. You can walk down to the spill way behind city park still also and walk the bike paths along the river. You can't drive down there anymore as you could when I was a kid.

PMI is open on the weekends if you're a drag strip enthusiast and the Friday night drags can get to rockin.There is also a circle track back there however, a few miles out of the north end of town is the old Beacon Hill Speedway( Not sure what its called now) and that is a more popular venue for circle track racing.

The picture you see above in the caption is Pueblo's famous River Walk which was copied from a city in Texas, I believe it was San Antonio but I can't remember for sure. Its a nice activity for you and your significant other if you enjoy those type of activities. Union Avenue and old downtown is right there.

Pueblo has in my opinion the best choices of Mexican and Italian food you could ask for. Pueblo is famous for it's green chile and the Sunset or Greys Coors Tavern are must stop places to have that green chile especially......in what they call a slopper. Wow that is good food and I miss it.

While the cost of living is great unfortunately, what is associated with it (lower wages) might keep you from living there and is why I'm in Northern Colorado.
I would move back there in a heart beat if I had the opportunity as the mixture of friends and other positives have a pull on me.

Pueblo West is just five minutes away and the population has grown from a few hundred in the 70's to almost 32,000 now. It is a mixture of Pueblo natives and California & Texas folks that have moved there as the word of mouth spread.

I hope this better informed people that were curious and would appreciate another perspective from someone that grew up there. I will always consider Pueblo my home.


Oct 11, 2013 11:17PM
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Pueblo, Co might be cheep but its one of the mosts UNFRIENDLY TOWNS EVER, I hate living here
Oct 11, 2013 8:36PM
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Any of these cities willing to hire me as a permanent employee, please contact me.  I am willing to relocate immediately!
Oct 11, 2013 9:47PM
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I would pay a few buck more and be warm and not freeze my **** off.
Oct 11, 2013 11:03PM
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The median home price in Idaho Falls is not $52,000!!!!!  $152,000 maybe.  Not sure it should have made the list!
Oct 11, 2013 9:53PM
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Omaha is a dump...stay out of there.
Oct 11, 2013 10:03PM
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You get what you pay for...location, location, location...
Oct 11, 2013 10:06PM
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What they don't mention is what people get paid.  Houses aren't so cheap when you aren't making as much.
Oct 12, 2013 2:14AM
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They also use fraudulent "median incomes" in this story.  What they meant was "household income."  BLS stats are notorious for wholesale lying.  Sad to say, the average American worker does NOT make $22/hour.  I was in a job MANY years before I passed that particular milestone.  In any case, I think it's a fantasy that the "average" American makes 50 grand a year.  I might be wrong, but I doubt it..
Oct 11, 2013 8:21PM
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Nothing in Ca. Oh, but we do have nice weather. . . Just trying to stay positive. . .

Oct 14, 2013 9:36AM
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You couldn't pay me to live in any of these towns.
Oct 11, 2013 8:10PM
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Love Texas an income tax free state. The article is a tad off in the house price quote. The average house/condo will run you 92.8K A single family house runs 112K. 52% guys in town so it is a great place for gals to move to. 62% white non-Hispanic has to be a high for the state, which is home to millions of illegals from south of the border. .It is a young person's town with a median age of 32.4.

Most of Texas is inexpensive relative to the rest of the country. I bought a 2005 build 1200 sq. ft. house for 79.5K several months ago in a growing area called Conroe, TX some 50 miles north of Houston. The median house price is 1K less. .  
Oct 11, 2013 11:23PM
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I'm a Coloradoan, and Pueblo, CO is a filthy, nasty dump. If you visited there you would think you are in Oklahoma: that's how bad it is.
Oct 14, 2013 9:44AM
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Any moderate to small-sized city in the American Heartland (avoid major college sites) can pretty much meet these criteria.  I've lived in several, and currently retired in KC, Mo on a Social Security check that doesn't come near $2000 per month.  And yes, I've been known to run up a big electric bill in July-August..., but it evens out over the course of the year.  A lot depends on what you think you HAVE to have.
Oct 14, 2013 10:31AM
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Can't think of a more boring town than Wichita Falls, TX.  Lived there 6 years, have family there now.  Biggest thrill is a trip to the mall, but how many times can one do this without mall burnout?  Downtown area is a ghost town, and there is a series of overpasses that, thankfully, allow travelers to pass through town at the fastest possible speed limit.

Part of Tornado Alley with very frequent winds, hot as a furnace in summer, cold as a freezer in winter, that would be squalls on any coast.  Oh, yes, and the "waterfall" in the photo?  It is man made, flows out of a pipe line at the base of a large cemetery, great for Halloween, and most of the time the water appears to be the color of milk chocolate.

Enjoy being bored?  This is your town.

Oct 14, 2013 9:35AM
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Yes these places are cheap, but there's a reason for that, they are also the crappiest places to live, no thank you MSN. I'll stay on Long Island where there are great beaches, friendly people and access to a big city. If I feel like leaving I'll return to my home state of South Carolina for inexpensive living and nice people
Oct 11, 2013 7:58PM
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Fayetteville, AR makes most of these lists every year. 
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