Cheapest Places To Live In North Dakota For 2020


We used data and science to determine which places in North Dakota 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 North Dakota.

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You don't get named the fastest growing state in the country if you don't have super affordable places to live; and folks, there are plenty of affordable places in the Peace Garden State awaiting your arrival.

The experts say that the cost of living is on the rise, so HomeSnacks thought it would be a great idea to give North Dakotans one of the best life hacks: we compiled a list of the most affordable places to live in North Dakota for 2020. How did we determine the most affordable places to live in North Dakota for 2020? We consulted the latest US Census data and cost of living statistics for the Roughrider State.

We discovered that North Dakota has all kinds of affordable places for every walk of life. Hip, millennial cities like Fargo have multiple opportunities for young professionals just starting out. Cities like Bismark provide inexpensive staycations. And if you're looking for a city to offset your grocery bill with a little hunting, we hear that Grand Forks is a great place to fill that elk and/or deer tag.

More importantly, if you choose to live in one of North Dakota's most affordable places, you will save money for the fun things that this flyover state has to offer. Like, a day trip to Hankinson's Dakota Magic Casino or a weekend at Devils Lake. So, want to know where you can get the most bang for your buck in North Dakota? Keep reading.

If you ask any North Dakotan, they will say, hands down, that their city is the best. But if you're the good people in our most affordable place in North Dakota for 2020, you know you live in North Dakota's best of the best.

What's the cheapest place to live in North Dakota? Without further adieu, the most affordable place in North Dakota for 2020 is Walhalla.

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 North Dakota and the cheapest places in the country:

The 10 Cheapest Places To Live In North Dakota For 2020

Walhalla, ND

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,035
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.4x (1st most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 112.6x (6th cheapest)
More On Walhalla: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

The median income in Walhalla comes in at $60,592 and the median home value is $85,900 for 2020.

Langdon, ND

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,867
Rank Last Year: 3 (Up 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.6x (3rd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 124.8x (4th cheapest)
More On Langdon: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Langdon comes in at $67,536 and the median home value is $105,000 for 2020.

Cooperstown, ND

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,104
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.7x (8th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 122.1x (5th cheapest)
More On Cooperstown: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

The median income in Cooperstown comes in at $53,710 and the median home value is $89,500 for 2020.

Ellendale, ND

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 1,201
Rank Last Year: 5 (Up 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.4x (2nd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 93.2x (21st cheapest)
More On Ellendale: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

The median income in Ellendale comes in at $45,461 and the median home value is $65,600 for 2020.

Cando, ND

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,110
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.6x (5th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 92.6x (22nd cheapest)
More On Cando: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Cando comes in at $49,375 and the median home value is $80,300 for 2020.

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,081
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 4)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.6x (4th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 102.5x (11th cheapest)
More On Gwinner: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Gwinner comes in at $73,813 and the median home value is $115,200 for 2020.

Rolla, ND

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 1,321
Rank Last Year: 19 (Up 12)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.7x (9th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 95.4x (16th cheapest)
More On Rolla: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

The median income in Rolla comes in at $57,546 and the median home value is $98,000 for 2020.

Linton, ND

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,019
Rank Last Year: 18 (Up 10)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.1x (18th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 97.3x (14th cheapest)
More On Linton: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

The median income in Linton comes in at $41,944 and the median home value is $87,100 for 2020.

Oakes, ND

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 2,042
Rank Last Year: 15 (Up 6)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.8x (11th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 98.1x (13th cheapest)
More On Oakes: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Oakes comes in at $62,283 and the median home value is $111,900 for 2020.

Lisbon, ND

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 2,052
Rank Last Year: 9 (Down 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 2.0x (16th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 103.2x (9th cheapest)
More On Lisbon: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

The median income in Lisbon comes in at $57,574 and the median home value is $113,700 for 2020.

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

Map Of The Cheapest Places To Live In North Dakota
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 North Dakota 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 51 places in North Dakota that have more than 1,000 people.

The place with the lowest cost of living in North Dakota according to the data is Walhalla. You can download the data here.

There You Have It Mr. Or Mrs. North Dakota Cheapskate

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

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

  1. Grand Forks
  2. Fargo
  3. Bismarck

For more North Dakota reading, check out:

Where Are The Most Affordable Places To Live In North Dakota?

Rank City CheapScore Population Home/Income Ratio Income/Rent Ratio
1 Walhalla 4.33 1,035 1.4x 112.6x
2 Langdon 6.0 1,867 1.6x 124.8x
3 Cooperstown 7.33 1,104 1.7x 122.1x
4 Ellendale 8.0 1,201 1.4x 93.2x
5 Cando 10.33 1,110 1.6x 92.6x
6 Gwinner 11.33 1,081 1.6x 102.5x
7 Rolla 11.67 1,321 1.7x 95.4x
8 Linton 13.0 1,019 2.1x 97.3x
9 Oakes 13.33 2,042 1.8x 98.1x
10 Lisbon 14.33 2,052 2.0x 103.2x

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.