10 Cheapest Places To Live In South Dakota For 2019


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

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2019. This is our fourth time ranking the cheapest places to live in South Dakota.

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What do four presidential heads and 900,000 South Dakotans know that we don’t?

They know they’re some pretty affordable places in The Mount Rushmore State to take up residence.

Whether it’s on the side of a mountain or along the Missouri River, South Dakota’s affordability has a little something to do with the great people; but we’re even more convinced that it’s due to its strong economy. We can thank South Dakota companies like Brookings’ Daktronics for providing scoreboards at our favorite games and Sioux Falls’ Furniture Mart for providing the seats. More importantly, we can thank all of South Dakota’s entrepreneurs for keeping its residents employed and the state affordable.

Now, don’t get it twisted; just because these South Dakota places are affordable, doesn’t mean they’re unsafe. It’s actually quite the opposite. When you save money on your cost of living, you have more money to spend on your home and more money to funnel back into your neighborhoods and communities. So, it’s definitely not lost on us that some of South Dakota’s most affordable places are also some of its safest. Have we peaked your interest? If so, read on.

With a statewide median income close to $60,000 per year, who wouldn’t want a piece of the South Dakota pie? With numbers like these, it’s no wonder South Dakota’s poverty rate is one of the lowest in the country and that its unemployment rate is way below the national average at 2.8%.

So, want to know where the cheapest place to live in South Dakota for your buck is? That would be Britton.

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 South Dakota and the cheapest places in the country:

The 10 Cheapest Places To Live In South Dakota For 2019

Britton, SD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,687
Rank Last Year: 2 (Up 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.4x (2nd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 100.7x (6th cheapest)
More On Britton: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Britton comes in at $59,821 and the median home value is $86,700 for 2019.

Tyndall, SD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 1,151
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 2)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.7x (8th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 107.9x (5th cheapest)
More On Tyndall: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Tyndall comes in at $49,107 and the median home value is $83,200 for 2019.

De Smet, SD

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,162
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.6x (6th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 172.2x (1st cheapest)
More On De Smet: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in De Smet comes in at $57,500 and the median home value is $93,900 for 2019.

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 1,322
Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 3)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.5x (4th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 84.6x (21st cheapest)
More On Freeman: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Freeman comes in at $48,839 and the median home value is $75,100 for 2019.

Clear Lake, SD

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,307
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 1)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.7x (10th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 120.4x (3rd cheapest)
More On Clear Lake: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Clear Lake comes in at $55,286 and the median home value is $96,400 for 2019.

Gettysburg, SD

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,233
Rank Last Year: 12 (Up 5)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.6x (5th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 80.2x (28th cheapest)
More On Gettysburg: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Gettysburg comes in at $52,802 and the median home value is $85,800 for 2019.

Lemmon, SD

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 1,335
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 2)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.5x (3rd most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 72.4x (42nd cheapest)
More On Lemmon: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Lemmon comes in at $38,688 and the median home value is $57,300 for 2019.

Salem, SD

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,394
Rank Last Year: 10 (No Change)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.6x (7th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 80.8x (24th cheapest)
More On Salem: Homes For Sale | Data

The median income in Salem comes in at $56,771 and the median home value is $93,400 for 2019.

Redfield, SD

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 2,623
Rank Last Year: 8 (Down 2)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.7x (9th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 74.9x (36th cheapest)
More On Redfield: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

The median income in Redfield comes in at $41,938 and the median home value is $71,200 for 2019.

Review Of Redfield by HomeSnacks User

I lived in Redfield for quite some time, granted I was just a kid, but I was never bored, in the summer we would go to Aberdeen to Storybook land which is only 40 miles north, and as to worst place I know a town in SD that is worst then Redfield, at least Redfield knew what to do when it snows, I live in Wyoming now but our town is so dumm they don’t even know how to remove snow right, but I have to agree on the job part that’s why we moved when my dad got a job out here. So part of what you say is good but the other is so wrong.

Winner, SD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 2,854
Rank Last Year: 40 (Up 28)
Home Price To Income Ratio: 1.9x (13th most affordable)
Income To Rent Ratio: 81.5x (23rd cheapest)
More On Winner: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Winner is a city in Tripp County, South Dakota, United States. The population was 2,897 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Tripp County. Winner also serves as the administrative center of neighboring Todd County, which does not have its own county seat. The nearest airport is Winner Regional Airport.

Winner was laid out in 1909, and named for the fact the town had emerged the “winner” as the county’s most successful trading point.

The median income in Winner comes in at $47,948 and the median home value is $88,800 for 2019.

How We Determined The Most Affordable Places To Live In The Mount Rushmore State For 2019

Map Of The Cheapest Places To Live In South 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 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 South 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 63 places in South Dakota that have more than 1,000 people.

The place with the lowest cost of living in South Dakota according to the data is Britton.

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

If you’re looking at the cost of living numbers in South Dakota, this is an accurate list of the most affordable places to live in south dakota for 2019.

Here’s a look at the most expensive cities in South Dakota according to the data:

  1. Spearfish
  2. Rapid City
  3. Custer

For more South Dakota reading, check out:

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

Rank City CheapScore Population Home/Income Ratio Income/Rent Ratio
1 Britton 8.0 1,687 1.4x 100.7x
2 Tyndall 8.67 1,151 1.7x 107.9x
3 De Smet 9.67 1,162 1.6x 172.2x
4 Freeman 11.33 1,322 1.5x 84.6x
5 Clear Lake 12.33 1,307 1.7x 120.4x
6 Gettysburg 16.0 1,233 1.6x 80.2x
7 Lemmon 16.0 1,335 1.5x 72.4x
8 Salem 17.33 1,394 1.6x 80.8x
9 Redfield 17.33 2,623 1.7x 74.9x
10 Winner 18.33 2,854 1.9x 81.5x

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.