Each time we move, I am shocked at the difference in cost of living from state to state. It’s understandable, some places are more appealing than others. Some places offer more jobs and opportunities, others have better weather and family friendly atmospheres. Some areas are incredibly crowded with no room for expansion, while others have open spaces and plenty of room for new development. Between my husband and I, we have lived in six states, soon to be seven. Brad has lived in the NYC area twice. The difference in home values between my home town and where we live now is more than $300,000. I have broken it down by school districts that we have lived in, which all are highly rated. I used median home cost as the gauge, and found the information in the American Community Survey from 2009-2013 from the US Census Bureau and the National Center for Education Statistics.
Clarkston, MI- Median Home Value- $248,300
This is where Brad grew up, and most of his family still live there. It’s a wonderful town with great schools, and we love visiting there whenever we can!
Kent, OH- Median Home Value- $144,700
My hometown is the cheapest on the list, probably due to the fact that the closest major city is pretty small and it’s over an hour commute to downtown Cleveland. The schools were excellent when I went there, but their ratings are currently only above average on Greatschools.org.
Weston, FL- Median Home Value- $181,500
The cost of living here is deceiving. There are many condos in Weston, which brings the median home prices down. The schools are excellent, but single family homes are really pricey ($300,000+). Contrary to popular belief, there are some excellent public schools in South Florida, most of them are in suburbs away from the coast.
New Berlin, WI- Median Home Value- $241,400
Despite the frigid cold and snow, New Berlin was one of my favorite places to live. People are kind, the schools are great, and its close proximity to Milwaukee gives you a lot of things to do.
Northvale, NJ- Median Home Value- $478,400
It’s been no secret that this hasn’t been my favorite area to live in, but it does have its advantages. The schools are good, and it’s less than an hour from NYC. That being said, the cost of living is outrageous!
Lansdale, PA- Median Home Value- $288,200
This was supposed to be our next destination (we are headed back to Texas instead). The schools are excellent and there are tons of parks and other town amenities. It’s only a 35 minute train ride into Philadelphia as well.
Keller, TX- Median Home Value- $176,300
The Keller Independent School District includes the city of Keller and parts of North Fort Worth. Inside the city limits, home prices are higher. The schools are excellent and Keller was #7 on Money Magazine’s Best Places to Live in 2009. I couldn’t agree more, we really loved it there! The schools are excellent and there are plenty of family friendly things to do.
Plano, TX- $232,600 (225,800)
We are headed to Plano in a few weeks and I couldn’t be more excited! The first figure is for Frisco Independent School District, which is the one that my children will attend, and the other is for Plano Independent School District. Both of which are huge districts with excellent schools. There are tons of things to do, and I can’t wait to get out of this cold weather and get settled!
Have questions about cost of living in a certain area? You can find information at the following links:
Until our next adventure,