The 5 Most Affordable Places to Live In Missouri

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By Jamie Ayers Updated August 12, 2022


Finding a home that meets your needs without breaking the bank can be a serious challenge. State-wide, Missouri has a median home value of $163,600. When you add in maintenance costs and property taxes, it can be difficult for many to buy and own a home.

That's why we've compiled a list of affordable cities in Missouri to help you find a new place to live. All of these places are more affordable than average, meaning you can get more bang for your buck.

Looking for the most affordable places in Missouri is a start, but you'll save even more money by working with a great agent.

The top Missouri real estate agents know the local market and where to find pockets of more affordable homes. They can also help negotiate a better price when you do find your dream home.

At Clever Real Estate, we can match you with agents in any area you're interested in — even multiple areas at the same time. You can interview as many agents as you like until you find the perfect place to call home — all at no cost or obligation to you.

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Most affordable cities in Missouri

Whether you're looking for a quiet small town or a trendy suburban neighborhood, it's possible to locate pockets of affordability throughout Missouri.

Here are our top picks for Missouri residents on a budget:

1. Webb City

This beautiful town of about 11,000 is right on the Kansas border and is within sight of the Ozark Mountains. Until a few years ago, Webb City boasted not only the lowest cost of living in Missouri but in the entire country. Though it doesn’t quite hold the crown anymore, it’s still incredibly cheap, and considering the amenities and location, it offers great value.

Though it was in a long economic decline for several decades after the local mining industry collapsed, the manufacturing base is slowly but steadily being revitalized. Who knows how much longer Webb City will be so affordable? Also consider that as home values start to rise in a town that’s so historically affordable, you might want to think about doing some investing.

According to Niche data, the median income in Webb City comes in at $48,318 and the median home value is $102,200 for 2019.

2. New Franklin

New Franklin is a quaint little Missouri town that just might be the most affordable place to live in the entire state. With a little over 1,100 residents, New Franklin features several parks, including nine-acre City Park, and it’s right on the historic Katy Trail, a 237-mile long trail that’s been repurposed for cycling, walking, or hiking.

The median home value in New Franklin is a very affordable $80,900 and the average monthly rent is $412. The median household income in New Franklin is $31,500.

Even after you've found a more affordable place to live in Missouri, moving there can be expensive. By working with a Clever Partner Agent, you'll have an expert in your corner who can help you win at negotiations.

Having a Clever agent that knows how to get you a discount on your sale price or stack up buyer concessions in your favor can help you save thousands. All of our agents are top rated and come from well-known brokerages like Century 21 or Keller Williams, meaning you'll be getting a quality agent you can trust to score you a deal.

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3. Fayette

This idyllic town of nearly 3,000 residents is only 26 miles from Columbia and is surrounded by gently rolling hills. Because Central Methodist University is located here, it combines the vibe of an old-fashioned small town with a Midwestern college town. Along the picture-perfect main street are art galleries, restaurants and cafes, and boutiques.

There are multiple lakes within an hour’s drive and the presence of the university means there’s a significant art scene here. Despite all these amenities, it’s one of the most affordable places in Missouri, with a median home value of $81,300 and an average monthly rent of $740. The average household income here is $40,006.

4. Aurora

Known as the Summit City of the Ozarks, this midsized town of 7,800 offers a great quality of life as well as a low cost of living. The town boasts five parks, and supposedly Brad Pitt is a descendant of the founders of the town.

The median home value in Aurora is $78,100, and the average rent is $686. To put that in perspective, the average household income here is $36,563.

5. St. Ann

This mid-sized suburb of St. Louis was founded in the post-World War II boom and quickly mushroomed to nearly 20,000 residents. Though it’s no longer growing as much as it was in the 60s and 70s when outside development money built shopping centers and retail complexes, St. Ann has stabilized as a community with an emphasis on redevelopment and revitalization.

Today there are a little more than 13,000 residents, but the town boasts one of the best public parks programs in the state, as well as top-notch public schools. The fact that it also offers one of the lowest costs of living in the state makes it a no-brainer for anyone looking to settle down in a place where they’ll get the most bang for their buck.

The median income in St. Ann comes in at $46,680 and the median home value is $87,000 for 2019.

The benefits of a great real estate agent

If you're just researching affordable places to live, you might wonder why you need a real estate agent. They're the ones that help you once you've already decided on a house, right?

Not necessarily. The truth is, it's never too early to start looking for an agent. In fact, talking to a realtor early on in the process can help you narrow down your options much faster than doing research on your own.

A real estate agent's job is to know everything about their local area. They'll find the best deals in desirable neighborhoods — and might just help you snag your dream home for an affordable price. Let a Clever agent help you discover your options today!

👋 Find your perfect agent now!

Finding a great local realtor is the first step in making your home buying dreams a reality. Our free service matches you with top agents from trusted brands like Keller Williams and RE/MAX.

Enter your zip code to request hand-picked agent matches in minutes. Compare your options until you find the perfect fit, or walk away with no obligation. Try Clever's free service today!

Frequently asked questions about affordable places to live in Missouri

How can I save money when buying a home in Missouri?

In addition to shopping in some of the most affordable areas, you'll want to work with an experienced real estate agent. They can find you hidden gems at low price points. A good agent can also negotiate like a pro to get you a lower sale price and more buyer incentives. You may also be able to take advantage of home buyer rebates.

How do I know how much I can afford to buy in Missouri?

We recommend using the 28/36 rule to know how much house you can afford. This means your housing expenses shouldn't exceed 28% of your income, and all of your total debt shouldn't exceed 36%. Learn more about how to calculate your home buying budget.

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