Cheapest Places To Live In Louisiana For 2020


We used data and science to determine which places in Louisiana go easy on your wallet.

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the cheapest places to live in Louisiana.

Got kids? Are you a young professional short on cash? Ready to retire on a budget?

Don't worry, Louisiana has you covered!

That's right, Louisiana has some of the most affordable places to live, no matter what stage you are in life. And lucky for you, HomeSnacks is here to help you navigate the places in The Bayou State where your dollar will go the furthest.

Ask any Louisianian, and they will tell you, hands down, that their corner of the Deep South is the best. And while that might be true for most Louisiana places, there are some pretty expensive places in the Pelican State. So, we suggest that you take a look at our top ten list of the most affordable places, below, if you're planning to live in Louisiana on a budget.

How did we determine the most affordable places in Louisiana? We took a look at the US Census and the cost of living data for the state. We were especially interested in home and rental prices in places with more than 5,000 residents.

Want to know more? We suggest you crank some Louis Armstrong, grab a basket of fried gator bites in Lafayette, and keep reading.

The competition was fierce to say the least. Many of Louisiana's most affordable places boast great home prices and safe neighborhoods: any one of these places would be a great place to enjoy life while saving money. More importantly, if you choose one of Louisiana's most affordable places, you're going to free up cash for the fun "Louisiana" things to do and see. Like, buying tickets for a swamp tour in Slidell or spending a long weekend celebrating Mardis Gras in New Orleans.

So, where's the most affordable place to live in Louisiana for 2020? The cheapest place to live in louisiana would be Abbeville.

To see how your city compared, take a look at the list below. And if you don't see you're favorite there, head to the bottom.

And if you already knew these places were cheap, check out some more reading about Louisiana and the cheapest places in the country:

The 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Louisiana For 2020

Abbeville, LA

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 12,286
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 5)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.4x (4th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 54.9x (20th cheapest)
More On Abbeville: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

If you're looking for the most affordable place to live in Louisiana, look no further than Abbeville, a city just 20 miles south of Lafayette. Homes in Abbeville go for a median price of $86,800 and residents earn a median income of $36,696, giving Abbeville the fourth best home price to income ratio in Louisiana.

We already named Abbeville as one of the best places to raise a family in Louisiana thanks to its low crime, good schools, and access to kid-friendly amenities like Palmetto Island State Park. The fact that you can have all this for the lowest price in the state seems too good to be true.

The median household income in Abbeville comes in at $36,696 and the median home value is $86,800 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 12.3%.

Oakdale, LA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 7,640
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.7x (8th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 52.4x (26th cheapest)
More On Oakdale: Real Estate | Cost Of Living

Oakdale ranks as the second cheapest city in Louisiana thanks to its rock-bottom housing prices for both renters and buyers. The median rent in Oakdale is an absurdly low $488/month, which is less than half the average rent in Louisiana. On top of that, Oakdale has the third cheapest homes for sale in the state, with a median home price of $67,800. Regardless of your living situation, paying the housing bills in Oakdale is more of a minor inconvenience than a bank-breaker.

The median household income in Oakdale comes in at $25,550 and the median home value is $67,800 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 8.0%.

Patterson, LA

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 6,012
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 5)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.5x (5th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 58.3x (15th cheapest)
More On Patterson: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Located in the southern part of the state about an hour and a half from New Orleans and Baton Rouge, Patterson clocks in as the third least expensive place in Louisiana.

If you fancy being able to go on a swamp tour with gators, bears, and eagles anytime you like, Patterson is the place for you. We didn't name it one of

the best places to live in Louisiana without good reason reason after all. Patterson has the fifth best home price to income ratio in the state, thanks to a low median home price of $111,800 and a relatively high median income of $45,631.

The median household income in Patterson comes in at $45,631 and the median home value is $111,800 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 2.7%.

Sulphur, LA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 20,241
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.6x (7th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 64.1x (7th cheapest)
More On Sulphur: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

With a population of 20241, Sulphur is the biggest city to make this list, proving that you don't need to be teeny to be affordable. At first glance at the housing prices (a median rent of $835 and a median home price of $138,800), you may think we made a mistake putting Sulphur so high up on this list. But when you remember that Sulphur is also among richest places in Louisiana and things start to make sense. With a median income of $53,522, Sulphur is safely in the top ten statewide for both housing to income ratio, regardless of if you're buying or renting. It's also home to top-notch hiking trails like the Creole Nature Trail.

Sulphur is located in the southwestern part of Louisiana, near Lake Charles.

The median household income in Sulphur comes in at $53,522 and the median home value is $138,800 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 4.5%.

Franklin, LA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 7,097
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 4)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.2x (2nd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 47.4x (40th cheapest)
More On Franklin: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

You'll have no trouble believing that you're living in one of the cheapest states in America when you move to Franklin. Thanks to relatively high incomes and low home prices, Franklin has the second best home price to income ratio in Louisiana. That leaves plenty of money leftover to go shopping in Franklin's historic district (or just take in the opulent turn-of-the-century architecture).

Franklin is located 45 miles southeast of Lafayette.

The median household income in Franklin comes in at $35,852 and the median home value is $78,000 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 12.0%.

Tallulah, LA

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 6,929
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 3)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.3x (3rd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 43.5x (45th cheapest)
More On Tallulah: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Ranking as the sixth most inexpensive place in Louisiana is Tallulah, a city in the northeastern part of the state near the Mississippi border. Tallulah has the second cheapest homes for sale in the state, with a median price tag of $60,100. On the flip side, the poverty rate in Tallulah is over 40%, so coming into the city with a job lined up and some savings will really make Tallulah's affordability stand out. As a bonus, Tallulah is one of the safest places in Louisiana, so you can be sure the city hasn't skimped on security.

The median household income in Tallulah comes in at $26,385 and the median home value is $60,100 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 8.6%.

Scott, LA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 8,761
Rank Last Year: 26 (Up 19)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.7x (10th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 60.0x (13th cheapest)
More On Scott: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

A suburb of Lafayette, Scott is the seventh most affordable city in Louisiana. Scott's median income of $51,213 is quite high, which helps offset the slightly higher home prices ($138,900) and rent ($854). Buying or renting, Scott is in or around the top ten statewide in terms of housing costs to income ratio. And with across the board 7/10+ in our Snackability categories for safety, education, jobs, and housing, you can be sure that moving to Scott is a good investment for your future.

The median household income in Scott comes in at $51,213 and the median home value is $138,900 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 4.5%.

Rayne, LA

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 8,075
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 3.1x (24th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 62.4x (11th cheapest)
More On Rayne: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Located just 15 miles west of Lafayette, Rayne ranks as the eighth cheapest place to live in Louisiana. With a median rent of just $556, Rayne is well below the average price of rent in Louisiana, a state already known for having some of the the lowest rents in America. Taken as a proportion of income, Rayne is one of the most economical places in Louisiana to be a renter. In other words, Rayne is a great place to give Louisiana a chance to wow you before you commit to a mortgage.

The median household income in Rayne comes in at $34,670 and the median home value is $107,100 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 11.2%.

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 5,013
Rank Last Year: 12 (Up 3)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.1x (1st most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 40.5x (53rd cheapest)
More On Richwood: Real Estate | Cost Of Living

If we didn't take the cost of rent into consideration, Richwood would easily top this list. That's because the town has the cheapest homes for sale at $47,200 and the best home price to income ratio in Louisiana. However, like Tallulah, poverty rates in Richwood are incredibly high, so not everything is hunky dory. Richwood is also the least economical place to rent on this list, so keep that in mind if you're not ready to move here permanently just yet.

Richwood is located in the northern part of the state, just south of Monroe.

The median household income in Richwood comes in at $22,991 and the median home value is $47,200 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 11.1%.

Denham Springs, LA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 9,991
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.8x (16th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 63.0x (9th cheapest)
More On Denham Springs: Real Estate | Crime Rate | Cost Of Living

Rounding out our list of cheapest places to live in Louisiana is Denham Springs, a city just 25 minutes east of Baton Rouge. Whether you'd prefer spending your weekends tubing down the Amite River or shopping at the Antique Village, Denham Springs has something for everyone. And with an excellent housing to income ratio for both renters and home-buyers, there's something for every budget as well.

The median home price in Denham Springs is $148,100, the highest you'll see on this list. But with residents earning a median income of $52,212, the mortgage on your Denham Springs home will be paid off before the new paint can dry.

The median household income in Denham Springs comes in at $52,212 and the median home value is $148,100 for 2020. The unemployment rate sits at 5.4%.

How We Determined The Most Affordable Places To Live In The Pelican State For 2020

Map Of The Cheapest Places To Live In Louisiana
The two most important things to think about when it comes to being able to afford if you can live comes down to:

  1. How much do money do I make?
  2. 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 Louisiana 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 62 places in Louisiana that have more than 5,000 people.

The place with the lowest cost of living in Louisiana according to the data is Abbeville. You can download the data here.

There You Have It Mr. Or Mrs. Louisiana Cheapskate

If you're looking at the cost of living numbers in Louisiana, this is an accurate list of the most affordable places to live in Louisiana for 2020.

Here's a look at the most expensive cities in Louisiana according to the data:

  1. New Orleans
  2. Natchitoches
  3. Ruston

For more Louisiana reading, check out:

The Most Affordable Places To Live In Louisiana

Rank City CheapScore Population Home/Income Ratio Income/Rent Ratio
1 Abbeville 11.0 12,286 2.4x 54.9x
2 Oakdale 12.33 7,640 2.7x 52.4x
3 Patterson 14.0 6,012 2.5x 58.3x
4 Sulphur 14.33 20,241 2.6x 64.1x
5 Franklin 16.33 7,097 2.2x 47.4x
6 Tallulah 16.67 6,929 2.3x 43.5x
7 Scott 17.67 8,761 2.7x 60.0x
8 Rayne 18.0 8,075 3.1x 62.4x
9 Richwood 18.33 5,013 2.1x 40.5x
10 Denham Springs 19.67 9,991 2.8x 63.0x
11 Walker 20.33 6,250 2.8x 78.4x
12 New Iberia 22.33 29,992 2.8x 50.2x
13 Deridder 22.33 11,050 3.1x 58.5x
14 Central 22.67 28,577 2.8x 84.0x
15 Baker 23.33 13,557 2.7x 49.1x
16 Bogalusa 24.67 11,793 2.9x 40.8x
17 Gonzales 25.33 10,677 2.8x 57.3x
18 Leesville 25.33 6,055 2.8x 41.7x
19 Zachary 25.33 17,056 2.8x 74.6x
20 Eunice 25.33 10,407 3.3x 50.4x
21 St. Gabriel 25.67 7,200 3.0x 72.0x
22 Morgan City 26.0 11,452 3.3x 53.9x
23 Broussard 26.33 11,412 2.9x 74.8x
24 Jeanerette 26.33 5,410 2.9x 42.3x
25 Port Allen 27.0 5,051 2.9x 48.1x
26 St. Martinville 27.33 6,014 3.3x 46.3x
27 Pineville 27.33 14,313 3.4x 62.6x
28 Youngsville 28.33 12,753 2.6x 55.3x
29 Slidell 28.67 27,769 2.9x 53.8x
30 Jennings 29.33 10,047 3.5x 47.9x
31 Marksville 31.33 5,476 3.4x 42.6x
32 Bossier City 31.33 67,935 3.2x 54.3x
33 Kenner 32.67 66,910 3.3x 56.0x
34 Alexandria 33.0 47,539 3.5x 49.3x
35 Ponchatoula 33.0 7,131 3.5x 51.5x
36 Houma 33.33 33,520 3.6x 54.2x
37 Lake Charles 33.67 76,267 3.6x 51.7x
38 Ville Platte 34.67 7,196 3.7x 35.6x
39 Breaux Bridge 35.0 8,299 3.6x 53.7x
40 Bastrop 35.67 10,521 3.7x 35.8x
41 Crowley 36.33 12,960 3.7x 39.9x
42 Covington 37.0 10,133 3.8x 63.2x
43 Minden 37.0 12,442 3.6x 35.0x
44 Hammond 38.0 20,444 3.8x 49.7x
45 Harahan 38.33 9,309 3.7x 61.1x
46 West Monroe 39.0 12,756 3.8x 44.2x
47 Shreveport 39.67 193,785 3.8x 47.3x
48 Mandeville 39.67 12,252 3.9x 68.6x
49 Lafayette 40.0 126,515 3.8x 57.4x
50 Carencro 41.0 8,775 4.2x 51.2x
51 Opelousas 41.33 16,399 4.4x 36.6x
52 Gretna 42.0 17,797 3.8x 51.9x
53 Grambling 44.0 5,187 4.5x 38.7x
54 Plaquemine 44.33 6,726 3.8x 47.4x
55 Monroe 45.33 48,663 4.8x 43.2x
56 Donaldsonville 45.33 8,090 4.9x 36.8x
57 Thibodaux 45.67 14,515 4.4x 45.1x
58 Westwego 46.0 8,499 4.2x 33.0x
59 Baton Rouge 46.33 225,362 4.1x 48.6x
60 Ruston 52.67 22,055 5.6x 42.8x
61 Natchitoches 55.67 18,080 7.1x 32.6x
62 New Orleans 57.0 389,648 5.5x 40.7x

How Is The Area In ?

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.