These Are the 5 Cities With the Lowest Cost of Living in the U.S.

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  • Residing in a place with a low cost of living can help you stretch your dollars further.
  • Several Southern cities offer plenty to do, along with really low housing costs.

These cities are off the beaten path, but they're definitely worth a closer look.

The place we call home affects our life in innumerable ways, from how we get around to what we do for fun. It also determines how much money we need to spend to keep a roof over our head and food on our tables.

Cost of living isn't the only or even the most important factor in deciding where to live, but it's definitely in the back of people's minds. If you're looking for an affordable place to call home, the following five cities are the cheapest in the nation, according to doxo.

1. Maxton, North Carolina

Average bill costs: $1,025 per month (48.8% below national average)

Maxton is a small town of about 2,110 people located just slightly north of the South Carolina border. Though the town itself is pretty small at just 2.23 square miles, it's within driving distance of several larger cities. Charlotte, NC and the Atlantic Ocean are each just two hours away.

The average cost of a home in Maxton is just $55,000, according to the city's website. This explains the town's low average mortgage payment of just $768 a month, per doxo. Rent, insurance, and cable are all pretty cheap in the area as well. The town's only above-average cost appears to be its utilities, which fall just slightly over the national average.

2. Mercedes, Texas

Average bill costs: $1,104 per month (44.9% below national average)

Mercedes is a city in southern Texas near the Mexican border and not too far off the Gulf of Mexico. It offers a variety of outdoor activities, including golf and birdwatching, as well as an active community calendar with plenty of family-friendly events all year round.

Approximately 74% of Mercedes families own their own homes, according to its Chamber of Commerce website, and those that do pay an average of about $832 a year on insurance, per doxo. Other common expenses, like auto loans and utilities, are also lower in Mercedes than in many other Texas towns.

3. San Benito, Texas

Average bill costs: $1,126 per month (43.8% below national average)

Just a 22-minute drive east from Mercedes, Texas, you'll find San Benito. With a population of nearly 25,000, it's larger than Mercedes but has many of the same charms, including beautiful natural environments and nearby state parks. The city also puts a strong emphasis on arts and culture, and is home to several museums.

Residents generally have affordable bills all around, but their auto insurance and cable bills are especially cheap. And whether you rent or borrow, there's a good chance you'll pay below the national average for your housing costs here.

4. Booneville, Mississippi

Average bill costs: $1,139 per month (43.1% below national average)

Booneville is located in the hills of northern Mississippi and has a population of about 8,700 people. Nicknamed the "City of Hospitality," it offers a family-friendly atmosphere with shopping, parks, and skating rinks.

Like most cities on this list, it has its affordable housing costs to thank for its low overall cost of living. Homeowners pay $721 per month while renters pay just $593 per month. The city's utility costs are also pretty affordable compared to much of the rest of the country.

5. Marion, Virginia

Average bill costs: $1,149 per month (42.6% below national average)

Marion, Virginia, is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, part of the Appalachian Mountains. It's an area known for its natural beauty and it's within driving distance of two state parks. It also has a lively downtown with restaurants, bars, and even a school for the arts.

While many of the city's costs, including insurance and cable bills, fall close to the national average, it remains the state's most affordable city thanks to its average mortgage bill of just $740 per month. Renting a home is also pretty budget-friendly in Marion, with the average renter paying just $618 per month.

There are plenty of other cities across the country that offer similar amenities and an affordable cost of living, and they may not be too far away from where you are now. Do some digging into nearby towns and see how their costs stack up to what you're currently paying.

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