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Have you been looking at the cheapest states to buy a house? Feel like you have no idea what to do, and where to start?

This post looks at the pros and cons of buying in a different state. We help you make a successful real estate purchase in another state while at the same time show you which states have the cheapest houses in the United States.

Why Look at The Cheapest US States To Buy A House?

If one thing is certain in a post-pandemic America, it is the upward trend in house prices. It shows very little signs of turning around. In fact, the Federal Housing Finance Agency predicts that the rise will continue till at least the end of 2023. What does this mean for the homeowner who is looking for a new adventure, or for property investors?

There are a number of the most expensive states to live in. Here the prohibitively high cost of living combined with a maxed out real estate market forces people to look outside their state borders for cheap houses for sale. 

relocation cost calculation

Why Buy a House in Another State?

Both parts of this double-edged question have lists of answers, which we explore in this section. We discuss reasons why not buying affordable houses in other states might be better for your situation.

Have you weighed up your options and have decided to become a home-owner? Our most affordable states to live in post should help you find the cheapest places to buy a house in the United States. However remember the golden rule that it fits your budget and requirements.

Should you buy a house or rent for a while longer? Here are some facts that may help you decide what is better for your specific situation.

Reasons to Buy a House

Buying a home is the largest financial commitment most people will make in their lives. It this is you, getting it right is paramount. When you are looking in the cheapest place in the United States to buy a house, Manhattan can be avoided. Costs here are more than double the national average. Get your market fundamentals in line from the outset.

It is nearly impossible for new investors to make inroads in sky-high property markets like New York or San Francisco.

  • When relocating to somewhere other than cheapest place to live in the US, you may be forced to rent because of the lack of viable homes for sale.
  • If you reside in the most expensive state to live in, you could ask where are the cheapest places to buy a house in the United States.
  • Does your state have falling real estate prices? It could be a financially sound move to explore areas with more sound market fundamentals.
in what states is it cheapest to buy a house

Your Answer is in The ROI

If you are interested in buying a house in one of the cheapest states to live in, it is a sound financial idea to find the geographical area where you will get the largest return on your investment, even if it is far away.

Some of the cheapest states to buy a house might offer conditions that give you a better potential ROI. These include:

  • Better home prices
  • More favorable appreciation rates
  • Lower mortgage costs
  • Lower taxes
  • Lenient housing regulations
  • A positive rental market

Why Buy a Home?

The US Real Estate market shows through historic data that house prices have been on a steady upward trend, despite volatile and fluctuating markets. This is a good reason to see which states are the cheapest to buy a house. Apart from this, there are more reasons to commit to arguably the largest financial commitment you will make:

  • The pride of ownership
  • Home value appreciation
  • Mortgage interest deductions
  • Potential property tax deductions
  • Capital gains exclusions
  • Preferential tax treatment
  • Build equity

The information above should go a long way to help you see where you are in your real estate/housing journey. Homeowners face serious financial, and other, implications.

buy property

Why Buy a House in Another State?

People might look at you quizzically when you mention that you want to buy a house in another state. We have more than enough valid reasons for you to buy a house in the cheapest state to live in USA to prove any naysayers wrong.

Snowbirds are the USA’s migratory, seasonal residents who move with the sun. It is not uncommon for snowbirds to own a second home for seasonal escapes.

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Why else would you want to move to a new state? Maybe your kids are in a college in one of the cheapest states, and you want to move a bit closer? Did you know that Nationwide Auto Transportation offers amazing deals on College Car Shipping

If your retirement is around the corner, you could investigate some of the cheapest states to retire in. Perhaps you want to enter the rental market, and you need to research where is the cheapest place to buy a house in the United States. It is a good plan to look at the cheapest states to buy a house and live in; not only for you and your family’s comfort, but as a rental it could also be a sound financial decision.

Relocate for Work

The most exciting move is when you have to relocate for work. Covid-19 has opened up the country to people who are able to work remotely from home. Property owners or investors can now look at inventory from 50 states to find the cheapest place to buy a house.

Why Buy a House in the Lowest Cost of Living States?

Here are four steps to follow when you decide to buy a house as a rental property in another state:

  1. Identify geographic areas with positive job- and population growth for investment.
  2. Match your rental portfolio with your investment strategy.
  3. Set your goals and intentions:
    1. Maximum cash flow
    2. High appreciation
    3. Total yield over the selected holding period
  4. You have a better ROI in landlord friendly states with relaxed regulations and cheaper property taxes.

If you live in a state where the cost of living is prohibitively high—or the rental market where you stay is unstable—it could be worth investigating the cheapest state to live in. Knowing the most affordable states for rentals will help you save.

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Factors To Consider When Buying A House | Narrowing Down the Options

People have different tastes and needs when it comes to time to buy a house. Everyone would like to buy a house without any faults, right? The reality is that even your dream home might need a bit of TLC. Therefore it is more important to identify the factors that will be a dealbreaker for you.

Before you start looking at property in the cheapest places in the United States to buy a house, there are several factors to consider. Location and finances are the first things that spring to mind. Importantly, consider whether the house will fit into your future plans.

Things to Consider When You Buy a House

Buying a house can be rather stressful. Get your search started on the right foot because that will go a long way to an easy sell/buy transaction. If you are a first-time buyer there are a few things to be aware of besides your likes and dislikes. Here is a short list:

cheapest states to buy a house and live
  • Price: When you buy a house—whether in the most affordable place in the US or not—it all starts with price. Remember that there are a plethora of ‘hidden’ costs that are not displayed on the sale price.
  • Location, location, location: If you are going to work and live here, make sure that your commute times, weather, schools, and other amenities fall within your requirement. Thankfully, the ability to work remotely, has opened a whole new country of living opportunities.
    • Read our posts on what are the cheapest states to live in the U.S.A.
    • Remote work means that you can now move to the cheapest states to buy a house on the east coast, even if your office is on the west coast.
    • Move closer to the grandchildren
    • Find the perfect sunny winter city for snowbirds

What more to look out for?

  1. The size of the lot and the house is important for your future plans. 
    1. Are you going to rent the property or are you staying there?
    2. Is there room for future expansion if needed?
    3. Are there enough bedrooms and bathrooms according to your checklist?
  2. Does the kitchen area meet you and your families requirements, now and for the future?
  3. Are the appliances what you need?
  4. Are you looking for a newly built home, or is age not a factor?
  5. Why is the seller selling? Ask your realtor about the seller’s motivation for selling. An urgent sale could see you getting the property at a better price perhaps.
  6. Maintenance: Unless you are buying a newly built property, there will always be maintenance issues. Make sure you are equipped to handle these, financially and otherwise.

Things to Consider for First Time Home Buyers

Whether you are looking to buy a house in the least expensive states to live in, or in your current city, there is a list of things to know before making your choice. Whether you are a first time home buyer or not, it is essential that you:

  1. Consider what type of property you need/want
  2. The area 
  3. Your budget

Tips for First Time Home Buyers

If you have bought a property before you will know that it can be a tricky and stressful time in anyone’s life. When you buy a house for the first time it feels doubly so, and can be extremely disorientating. With this in mind, here are a few helpful hints for a fun first-time home buying experience.

You must be clear about all the costs involved when you buy a house. Don’t forget:

  • Mortgage registration costs
  • Clearance certificates
  • Home insurance
  1. Pre-approved finance is a helpful price negotiating aid that lets you know exactly in what price range to focus your search.
  1. Besides the deposit that needs to be paid, remember the unseen costs like:
  • Transfer duties
    • Special sectional title levies
    • Add taxes and rates to your calculations to determine exactly what you can afford in repayments.
  1. Our helpful Guide to The Cheapest Cities in The United States that will assist you to focus in areas that you will like, and can afford. It is important that your chosen area meets your needs when it comes to:

Know what is needed

  • Transport and Commuting options | Find out more about the Nationwide Auto Transportation  Car Relocation Shipping service to get your car to your new state.
  • Nearby schools
  • Shops and other conveniences
  1. It is very important to check that your house structure matches the plans you have.
  1. Obtain all Clearing and Compliance certificates (Rates, Gas, Utilities) as soon as possible to save the hold up at time of transfer.
  1. Sellers are obliged to make you aware of latent defects. Still it makes sense to have the house thoroughly checked for structural damage or damp.

FAQ When Looking for the Cheapest Real Estate in US

Many people looking for new opportunities are comparing the cheapest to most expensive states to buy a house in the country. In this section we answer a few of your questions.

What are the cheapest states to buy a farmhouse?

Iowans spend less than 11% of their median household income on housing. This makes Iowa the cheapest state to buy a house in the US.

Can I buy a house in Texas if I live in California?

The simple answer is yes. You will need to identify a licensed lender that you are comfortable with to successfully buy a house in another state.

Do I need to live in Florida to buy a house?

Florida is not the cheapest place to buy a house in the eastern United States, but the same answer applies 

What do you need to buy a house in Georgia?

To qualify you need a credit score of no less than 620, and a dti ratio below 43%. If you have at least 3% of the purchase price for a downpayment—and sufficient funds left for other costs—you could buy a house in Atlanta, or in Georgia.

How do I invest in long distance real estate?

This article will help investors, house-flippers, snowbirds, and other home buyers find the cheapest states to buy a house. We’ll also give you some tips on long distance real estate investing.

What About Buying a House in the Lowest Cost of Living States

Whether you buy a house in the same town or another state, there are many similar factors that affect a sale. Budget, area, and property type are the three cardinal things to consider as you start your search for what is the cheapest state to live in. Here are a few more important items to keep in mind:

Will Financing be Needed?

Choose a licensed bank or lender that has open and honest communication and answers to your questions. Weigh up your mortgage options as certain investment properties may require a larger down payment. Always try for a pre-approved loan that eases the process a lot.

Should You Use a Realtor?

There are a number of valuable resources available on the world wide web that will give you a hint of what a city, state or area is like to live in. It will also show you where the cheapest states to buy a house can be found.

However, unless you know a certain city or area very well, it is advised to look at the services of a reputable local realtor. What can a realtor tell you?

  • Where are the best neighborhoods?
  • How does the school system work?
  • What is the crime rate?
  • The local transport and amenities

Work with your realtor to get the best deal possible, and as the seller usually foots this bill, look for the best. It is just as important to get an honest assessment from a local realtor with integrity, experience and knowledge as it is to find a car shipping company with the same values. A reliable car company knows interstate shipping and how to safely ship your car to another state.

Useful Websites When Looking for the Cheapest Land in the US

Real Estate Investment and Savings Strategy

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Government Auctions and Sales – USA.gov

What if I can’t go see the property before I buy? If you cannot hop on a plane, or take a long road trip, your realtor should take the lead. Video chats, drones, and all sorts of technology can give you a very good idea of what a house or area is like. 

Deciding What Type of Property you Need

There are a variety of real estate options available to homebuyers in the USA. How do you know which option is right for you, and what are the options when you investigate the cheapest states to buy a house.

What does the term, I want to buy a house, mean to you? Not everyone thinks of a home as a classic free standing white picket fence like you would picture in the cheapest states to buy a rural house. Depending on the person it could mean anything from a renovated duplex, to an off-plan apartment, and anything in between.

Buy a House vs Build a House

An age old buyers conundrum – Buy vs Build? When you build a house, you get to plan and tailor make a home that suits your needs and tastes. However, when you buy an existing home you see what you get, and get what you see (and sometimes don’t see).

What is the First Home Owner Grant?

For those of us who would like government assistance when you buy a new home, usa.gov has Programs to Help You Pay for a Home, and specialist advice on how to apply for a FHOG. Note that there are certain states where you can only receive the grant when you build your house from the ground up. Save on duty costs and only pay duties on the vacant land’s value.

Visit USA.gov to see who is eligible for a Housing Choice Voucher and how to apply for one. 

What Does Buying ‘off the plan’ Mean?

In reality you are buying into a dream that hasn’t been built yet, or is only partially completed. There are different agreements that give owners a varying degree of control over the design and finishes. An early deposit of anything between 5% to 20% can be required. Having said that, there’s time to build equity while your home is being built.

Buying off the plan can be risky because the real estate market can fluctuate while construction is ongoing. This could lead to a devaluation of your property and reduced equity when you move from the cheapest to most expensive states to buy a house.

Read on to learn what other types of properties are available on the US market and see which states are the cheapest to buy a house.

What Types of Property Can I Buy?

 There certainly can be stressful times when you buy a house. That said, house hunting can be an amazing and fun adventure. The real estate market offers buyers many diverse and exciting options to satisfy property needs and wants. Let’s browse through a few options.

buy a house
  • Apartments and Units

Whether you stay in one of the most expensive cities for housing—like Manhattan, or in any of the cheapest states for rentals—apartment life is extremely popular. Affordability and reduced maintenance costs makes this a popular metro lifechoice, but remember to budget for levies. 

  • Townhouses and Villas

Another popular big city housing choice: townhouses and villas offer reduced costs, but with a small garden or other outdoor features. Budget for levies.

  • Dual occupancies

These are in reality two homes built on one stand, but with different titles. Sizes vary greatly and a small outdoor space or garden usually features.

What are your needs vs your budget?

  • Duplexes

The small space these units take up makes them affordable, and if you like close-quarter living and shared common spaces, this is an investment for you. 

  • House and land packages

Suburban living is the dream for many Americans, and with new developments these package deals can be affordable. Remember to factor the cost of commuting and other lifestyle costs.

  • Newly renovated homes

Renovate and resell! House flipping has become quite popular and even if you don’t have the means to do this yourself, you could pick up a good deal on a residential property. Another plus point is that the hard repair work is already done. Your own plug and play home might be the way to go if time is limited! Check all compliance certificates for peace of mind.

  • Fixer-uppers

When you buy a house on a tight budget, a fixer-upper could be the way to get into the market. Be aware and keep your eyes open to ensure there are no nasty surprises. You may end up getting a great deal.

Once you have decided what kind of property will suit your lifestyle, you can start looking at the cheapest states to buy a house. Check out these articles:

5 of the Cheapest US States to Buy a House

If you have read the last couple of articles about where the most affordable places in the US are—as well as those that we posted on the cheapest states in the country—you will be aware that affordability varies greatly between states.

States, and even cities can be unique in their different systems, and it may even differ between city and state. All these variables can leave you scratching your head when you are looking for the cheapest states to buy a house west coast. Or perhaps you are in the market for a rental unit in the lowest cost of living states?

Kansas Has Cheap Houses For Sale

Situated in Midwest USA, the Breadbasket of the Nation is known for fields of grain and wheat that stretch as far as the eye sees. Kansas has one of the lowest cost of living index figures in the country. That means that it is really, really cheap to live in the Wizard of Oz state.

Largest Cities in Kansas

  • Median Home Price: $151,900
  • Estimated Monthly Mortgage Payment: $721.70

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Mississippi is 4th Cheapest Place to Buy a House in US

Nebraska, Kansas and Mississippi are all in a close race when it comes to what is the cheapest place to buy a house in the Midwest. All three are regarded as good places to look for an investment property.

The Magnolia State’s Southern charm and deep-rooted culture draws many people to look at investing in a home or rental property here. If you like catfish, the blues and great food, and you don’t like paying more than you should, you may want to look at Car Shipping Mississippi and how to relocate to this beautiful state.

Largest Cities in Mississippi

  • Median Home Price: $119,000
  • Estimated Monthly Mortgage Payment: $565.38

What do you do when it is time to relocate to Mississippi, or any of the cheapest places to buy a house in the United States? Here is a helpful relocation checklist that will help you decide what type of car transport to use, as well as other helpful hints.

Ohio is Amongst Cheapest Places to Buy a House in US

Another magic Midwestern state that continues the trend of cheapest states in the US to live. On average, Ohio homeowners spend 11% of their average income when they buy a house.

Bengals, Buckeyes and Browns – if you like football, this is a passionate state. It is also where Orville and Wilbur Wright were born as well as the home to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Ohio is amongst the most affordable places in the US, whether you are planning on living there, or to invest in an income generating property.  

Largest Cities in Ohio

  1. Columbus
  2. Cincinnati
  3. Cleveland
  • Median Home Price: $145,700
  • Estimated Monthly Mortgage Payment: $692.24

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Indiana is 2nd Cheapest State to Live in

Why is Indiana a good place to live? There are a long list of reasons why Indiana is one of the cheapest states to buy a house in but I will try and keep it brief. Indiana is known for its many square miles of flat farmland, which means that it is one of the cheapest states to buy a farmhouse.

Having some of the lowest living costs (and crime rates) in the country, means that house flippers, and other real estate investors, can safely look to The Hoosier State for real estate investment opportunities.

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Largest Cities in Indiana

  • Median Home Price: $141,700
  • Estimated Monthly Mortgage Payment: $673.23

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Iowa

When you are looking for the state with the most affordable housing in America, you can pull up your handbrake in Iowa. The median price for a home in the Hawkeye State checks in at under $148, 000 and you will need less than 11% of your household income to buy a house here.

The rural Midwest is hot news for people who think that it is time to buy a house, or invest, in the cheapest states to buy a house in the US… and Iowa is the hottest at the moment. There are large new housing developments happening in the larger cities, and rural development can be seen in the areas surrounding Iowa City, Des Moines, and Cedar Rapids.

Why is Iowa such a nice place to live? The atmosphere in this scenic state oozes small town charm, but there is also an electrically charged feeling of growth and excitement.

Why choose Iowa as the cheapest state to live in for you?

  • One of the cheapest states for retirement
  • Amongst the cheapest states for students
  • Most affordable state for young families

There is a cross section of age groups and people taking renewed interest in moving to Iowa. Millennials and retirees, as well as students looking for a safe and cheap place to further their studies, are searching for the cheapest cities to buy a house in Iowa, and finding what they are looking for.

Largest Cities in Indiana

  • Median Home Price: $147,800
  • Estimated Monthly Mortgage Payment: $702

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Are You Ready to Move to The Cheapest States to Buy a House?

Whether you have decided to buy a house in the cheapest state to live in as an investment or as a home, Nationwide Auto Transportation will make sure that your car transport needs are taken care of, safely and affordably.