Article Table Of Contents
Idaho is known for producing the most potatoes, its super cool ski towns, some pretty nice people, and some of the most affordable places to live in the country.
What does the most affordable place to live in Idaho look like? Well, after crunching data from the US Census and looking at affordable housing, median income, and overall cost of living statistics for cities with over 5,000 residents, HomeSnacks has uncovered the top ten most affordable places in Idaho for 2020. Idaho is way below the national unemployment rate at a whopping 2.9%. So it's not lost on us that they are also one of the fastest growing states in the country. The Gem State has strong companies that are keeping the state employed and affordable. For instance, Boise is home to Albertsons and we can thank Owyhee for the Idaho Candy Company.
More importantly, if you choose to live in one of Idaho's most affordable places, you will save money for the fun things that the 'Gem of the Mountains' has to offer. Like, a date night at South Boise's Big Idaho Potato Hotel or a powder day in Ketchum's Bald Mountain. So, want to know where you can get the most bang for your buck in Idaho? Keep reading as we unravel Idaho's most affordable places to live.
Idaho has a lot to offer. They have hip millennial cities like Idaho Falls, cool college cities like Moscow, and fun ski towns like Sun Valley, but we're here to tell you where your Idaho dollar will go the furthest.
What's the cheapest place to live in Idaho? While the competition was fierce, there can be only one number one affordable to live in Idaho for 2020; and that would be Payette.
So, if you care about home values and affordability, take a look at the list below; and if you don't find your favorite there, head to the bottom.
And if you already knew these places were cheap, check out some more reading about Idaho and the cheapest places in the country:
The 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Idaho For 2020
Payette is a city in and the county seat of Payette County, Idaho, United States. The population was 7,433 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Ontario, ORID Micropolitan Statistical Area.
The median income in Payette comes in at $50,655 and the median home value is $108,300 for 2020.
Blackfoot is a city in Bingham County, Idaho, United States. The population was 11,899 at the 2010 census. The city is the county seat of Bingham County. Blackfoot boasts the largest potato industry in any one area, and is known as the "Potato Capital of the World." It is the site of the Idaho Potato Museum, and the home of the world's largest baked potato and potato chip. Blackfoot is also the location of the Eastern Idaho State Fair, which operates between Labor Day weekend and the following weekend.
The median income in Blackfoot comes in at $42,606 and the median home value is $124,100 for 2020.
Rupert is the county seat and largest city of Minidoka County, Idaho, United States. It is part of the Burley Micropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 5,554 at the 2010 census.
The median income in Rupert comes in at $36,405 and the median home value is $97,400 for 2020.
The median income in Burley comes in at $41,773 and the median home value is $118,300 for 2020.
The median income in Chubbuck comes in at $59,148 and the median home value is $160,700 for 2020.
The median income in Mountain Home comes in at $48,615 and the median home value is $135,400 for 2020.
Preston is a city in Franklin County, Idaho, United States. The population was 5,204 at the 2010 census. The city is the county seat of Franklin County. It is part of the Logan, Utah-Idaho Metropolitan Statistical Area.
The median income in Preston comes in at $48,113 and the median home value is $150,400 for 2020.
Ammon is an edge city of Idaho Falls in Bonneville County, Idaho, United States. As of the 2010 US Census, the population of Ammon was 13,816.
The median income in Ammon comes in at $65,019 and the median home value is $189,900 for 2020.
Pocatello ) is the county seat and largest city of Bannock County, with a small portion on the Fort Hall Indian Reservation in neighboring Power County, in the southeastern part of the U.S. state of Idaho. It is the principal city of the Pocatello metropolitan area, which encompasses all of Bannock county. As of the 2010 census the population of Pocatello was 54,255.
The median income in Pocatello comes in at $44,171 and the median home value is $142,200 for 2020.
Idaho Falls is a city in and the county seat of Bonneville County, Idaho, United States, and is the largest city in Eastern Idaho. As of the 2010 census, the population of Idaho Falls was 56,813, with a metro population of 136,108. As of 2016, the population was estimated at 60,211.
The median income in Idaho Falls comes in at $50,482 and the median home value is $153,600 for 2020.
How We Determined The Most Affordable Places To Live In The Gem State For 2020
The two most important things to think about when it comes to being able to afford if you can live comes down to:
- How much do money do I make?
- How much do I have spend to live there?
You need to understand your costs in the context of how much money you make.
For example, if the median household earns $100,000 and spends $40,000 on housing it's actually cheaper to live there than a place with a median income of $50,000 and housing costs of $21,000. You might spend more on housing, but you have more money overall to play with.
With that example in mind, we derived several statistics from the latest Census American Community Survey 2014-2018 around incomes and costs. They are:
- Median Home Price / Median Income (lower is better)
- Median Income / Median Rent (Higher is better)
- Median Home Price
We added simply median home price because high home prices generally correlate with higher expenses for all costs related to homes (heating, electricity, etc).
You can then compare these metrics in each of the places in Idaho to figure out which is the least expensive.
What you are left with is a "Cost of Living Index" by taking the average rank of each of these metrics for each city.
So we used that cost of living index in order to rank all of the 33 places in Idaho that have more than 5,000 people.
The place with the lowest cost of living in Idaho according to the data is Payette. You can download the data here.
There You Have It Mr. Or Mrs. Idaho Cheapskate
If you're looking at the cost of living numbers in Idaho, this is an accurate list of the most affordable places to live in Idaho for 2020.
Here's a look at the most expensive cities in Idaho according to the data:
For more Idaho reading, check out:
Where Are The Most Affordable Places To Live In Idaho?