Top 5 Cheapest places to live in Texas with the Best quality of life – 2024

Home to a population of more than 30 million people, Texas has a lot to offer, from the wide-open spaces of the great plains to the bustling metropolises that dot the coast to its location next to the Gulf of Mexico. The Lone Star State is home to some of America’s most diverse cities and communities, while also offering some of its most beautiful natural landscapes. 

Before moving to Texas, it is suggested to research the cost of living in Texas so you have a better understanding of your potential new home. It is best to ask yourself certain questions regarding the area and to explore to make the right decision. Here are the lists of the top 5 cheapest places to live in Texas with the best quality of life in 2024.

map of cheapest places to live in texas

Methodology

We based our ranking of the 5 cheapest places to live in Texas on the median cost of buying a property in 2023, the median cost of rent for a 1-bed apartment in 2023, and the quality of life. We collected the data from Rocket Homes Real Estate Housing Market Reports and Zillow. To help you compare, As of November 2023, the median cost of buying a property in Texas is $314,040 and as of December 2023, the median rent for a 1-bedroom apartment is $1,850


The “Best quality of life” aspect is measured based on feedback from real people who have moved to this area in our database or real people from trusted online forums. More specifically, we look for positive feedback on job opportunities, quality of education, quality of healthcare, feeling of safety, public transportation, environment (cleanliness), as well as availability of recreational facilities and parks.

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1. Amarillo

Apartment in Amarillo
  • Average 1-bed apt rent: $1,295
  • Average property buying cost: $154,900

Amarillo is the largest city in the Texas Panhandle, and it is also home to some of the most popular attractions in Texas. The city offers many outdoor activities for those looking to get outside and explore. One of these activities is hiking, which can be enjoyed at Palo Duro Canyon State Park. Other outdoor activities include fishing and golfing at Amarillo Lake. The food industry is the main sector operating in Amarillo, with numerous restaurants and entertainment options located in downtown Amarillo.

Amarillo is also conveniently close to major highways such as 87, 27, and 40, providing easy accessibility to other amenities and cities in Texas. Locals have noted that the city is a great place to raise a family but, it is not recommended for young couples as there are not many entertainment options available.

The average rent for a 1-bedroom apartment is $1,295, and the average property price is $154,900 as of December 2023.

Zillow (Dec 2023) & Rockethomes (Dec 2023)

Amarillo, TX

2. Wichita Falls

Apartment in Wichita Falls
  • Average 1-bed apt rent: $1,045
  • Average property buying cost: $187,000

Located to the north of Texas, Wichita Falls is surrounded by hills and green spaces that offer stunning views. If you are seeking a quiet city to settle down, this area is the perfect match for you. Be prepared for hot and dry weather in Wichita Falls, as the city experiences many periods of drought throughout the year.

Many locals have noted that the city has a small-town atmosphere due to the presence of local small businesses and an Air Force Base nearby. If you are looking to catch a movie or attend a live concert in your downtime, the city has its own theatre known as the Wichita Opera House.

As of December 2023, the average property price is $187,000 and 1-bed apartments are renting for around $1,045.

Zillow (Dec 2023) & Rockethomes (Dec 2023)

Wichita Falls, TX

3. Killeen

Apartment in Killeen
  • Average 1-bed apt rent: $1,300
  • Average property buying cost: $234,775

Killeen, a city in central Texas, is known as the perfect family haven due to its easy accessibility to health care, as noted by many locals. Not only is Killeen an affordable city to live in, but it also boasts a great location with close access to the Hill Country. Killeen is just an hour’s drive to Austin, the state’s capital, a two-and-a-half-hour drive to San Antonio, or a three-hour drive to Houston.

It is important to note that many residents have explained that Killeen does not have a great public transportation system in place, so it is highly recommended to have a car if you are thinking of moving to Killeen. 

As of December 2023, the average property price is $234,775 and 1-bed apartments are renting for around $1,300.

Zillow (Dec 2023) & Rockethomes (Dec 2023)

Killeen, TX

4. Brownsville

Apartment in Brownsville
  • Average 1-bed apt rent: $1,300
  • Average property buying cost: $280,000

Brownsville is a small, welcoming city in Texas, close to the Mexican border, with a rich history that includes the Battle of Palmito Ranch during the Civil War. The city offers numerous parks and easy access to bike and walking paths, such as the Rose Lawn Memorial Gardens.

One of the advantages of living in Brownsville is that commuting is very easy, with the ability to reach any place in about 10 minutes. The city also has many educational institutions available like Triumph Public High School, Premier High School or the Harmony Science Academy. As of December 2023, the average property price is approximately $280,000, with 1-bedroom apartments renting for around $1,300.

Zillow (Dec 2023) & Rockethomes (Dec 2023)

Brownsville, TX

5. McAllen

Apartment in McAllen
  • Average 1-bed apt rent: $1,413
  • Average property buying cost: $379,000

McAllen is a large city with many activities for residents to enjoy.McAllen is a city located on the southernmost tip of Texas. It has many parks that are perfect for outdoor activities. One such park is McAllen Park, which features an 18-hole golf course and a water park.

This city is rich in Latino culture, with most of the population being Spanish speaking due to its proximity to the border of Mexico. McAllen offers a lot of employment opportunities in the automotive, aerospace, medical, and electronics industries, as the city is home to the South Texas College Technology Campus.

As of December 2023, the average property price is $237,900, and the cost of renting a 1-bed apartment is around $935.

Zillow (Dec 2023) & Rockethomes (Dec 2023)

McAllen, TX

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Conclusion

Texas is a great state to live in not only for its entertainment options but for its affordable housing. With Texas being one of the largest states in the United States, you are sure to find a home in the Lone Star State. 

We hope that the list of the Top 5 cheapest places to live in Texas serves as a guide. Whether you love mountain biking, world-class fishing, or the charm of smaller communities, there are options that fit your preferences and budget.

Are you moving to Texas soon? Check out some of the best movers in Austin, TX.

 

Last year’s ranking (2023)

  1. McAllen
  2. Amarillo
  3. El Paso
  4. Brownsville
  5. Temple
  6. Harlingen
  7. Mercedes
  8. Pecos
  9. Vidor
  10. Pampa

 

Our rankings are meticulously curated, considering affordability and quality of life. It’s important to highlight that certain states were excluded from last year’s lists due to insufficient rental data. Moreover, entries with higher average housing prices in the previous year were excluded from the current rankings. We encourage readers to weigh these rankings in light of their individual needs and preferences for a more informed decision-making process.

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Ann Nacario

The author

Meet Ann – our head writer with a knack for making moving and city living a breeze. From the many details of moving to picking the perfect moving company, she’s your guide. Ann has a friendly yet detailed approach to ensure your move goes off without a hitch. When she’s not writing about relocation, it will always be on her mind, but you’ll catch her spending time with her three furry friends.

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