If you’ve never paddled Flathead Lake or had a bison burger in Bozeman, then you’ve not experienced what the good people of Montana already know; they have some of the best, most affordable fun in the country.
But, you’re going to need a little more than affordable fun if you’re looking to move your life to Montana on a budget. You’re going to need a good job and a map to navigate Montana’s cost of living.
We’re pretty sure there isn’t a bad place to build your dream cabin in Montana, but there are some places that are super expensive. So, HomeSnacks thought that we’d give you the ultimate Montana life hack: a list of the most affordable places to live in Big Sky Country for 2019. How did we determine that most affordable places in Montana? We consulted Montana’s most recent census data. We also looked at cost of living, home prices, and the recent crime statistics for places with 1,000 or more residents.
The competition was fierce to say the least. Many of the Treasure State’s top ten most affordable places boast great home prices, safe neighborhoods, and good jobs. Any one of these Montana places would be a great place to enjoy life while saving money. Montana’s most affordable places also frees up cash for the fun ‘Montana’ things to do and see. Like, scoring tickets to Livingston’s Roundup Rodeo or catching a powder day in Whitefish. So, want to know where the cheapest places in Montana are to live? Read on.
It’s simple economics, folks. When you choose to live in one of Montana’s most affordable places, you’re choosing to live where your Montana dollar will go the furthest. And that, friends, makes perfect sense.
So, what’s the most affordable place to live in Montana for 2019? The most affordable place in Montana would be Chinook according to the most recent Census data.
To see how your city compared, take a look at the list below.
And if you already knew these places were cheap, check out some more reading about Montana and the cheapest places in the country:
The 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Montana For 2019
The median income in Chinook comes in at $38,824 and the median home value is $102,900 for 2019.
The median income in Scobey comes in at $53,594 and the median home value is $119,200 for 2019.
The median income in Wolf Point comes in at $43,512 and the median home value is $107,100 for 2019.
The median income in Colstrip comes in at $88,542 and the median home value is $137,500 for 2019.
The median income in Glasgow comes in at $61,484 and the median home value is $140,800 for 2019.
The median income in Townsend comes in at $49,012 and the median home value is $141,200 for 2019.
The median income in Deer Lodge comes in at $37,985 and the median home value is $113,000 for 2019.
The median income in Baker comes in at $51,573 and the median home value is $144,800 for 2019.
The median income in Conrad comes in at $43,372 and the median home value is $118,000 for 2019.
The median income in Hardin comes in at $43,641 and the median home value is $111,800 for 2019.
How We Determined The Most Affordable Places To Live In The Treasure State For 2019
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 2013-2017 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 Montana 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 50 places in Montana that have more than 1,000 people.
The place with the lowest cost of living in Montana according to the data is Chinook.
There You Have It Mr. Or Mrs. Montana Cheapskate
If you’re looking at the cost of living numbers in Montana, this is an accurate list of the most affordable places to live in montana for 2019.
Here’s a look at the most expensive cities in Montana according to the data:
- West Yellowstone
For more Montana reading, check out: