With skyrocketing costs of living and sluggish wages, the search is on for affordable cities. College students, working professionals, couples, families, and retirees demand thriving cities where the dollar stretches further. While affordable living covers every region, the list below summarizes the cities where it appears on the list the most times.

Omaha, NE

The only city appearing on all lists is Omaha, Nebraska. Earn more money and pay fewer expenses in this large metro area. Job opportunities are aplenty in insurance, logistics, agricultural, tech, business, and energy firms to offset the tiny increase in the cost of living. Add the Mutual of Omaha and Union Pacific, and the unemployment rate is one of the lowest in the country. Meanwhile, affordable construction and conversion housing scatter across the city. Add wonderful amenities, and Omaha is the city to beat.

Buffalo, NY

When people think of New York State, Buffalo rarely comes to mind, and that’s a shame. Buffalo gets eye rolls for the blizzards, but it’s a large metro area with perpetual amenities, a shorter commute, and excellent primary, secondary, and higher education. The city’s cost of living and rental prices are lower than the state average. Last, job growth is abundant thanks to the medical and educational industries. Get a large city feel at an affordable cost in Buffalo.

San Antonio, TX

Magnificent scenery, vibrant local amenities, rich history, and Spanish flair make San Antonio an underrated city. Overshadowed by Dallas, Austin, and Houston, San Antonio’s housing market and gas costs are the lowest of the four. The job influx in San Antonio originates from thriving healthcare, telecommunications, and military industries. Additionally, residents can enjoy the state’s no income tax law. If implants and residents can stand the heat, San Antonio is an affordable option.

Des Moines, IA

The capital city is a leader in affordable cost of living. Two hours east of Omaha, Des Moines has historic charm, low housing costs, and surprising local amenities that require seeing to believing. Job growth stems from over 80 local, regional, and national insurance companies. Additionally, it has a thriving tech community so big it shares the Silicon Prairie nickname with Omaha. Stretch the dollar further in this heartland city.

Affordable living is possible, but citizens must put forth an effort to research and discover cities that suit their needs.

About Ephraim Vashovsky