Three cheapest cities to live in are in Texas

JESSICA HORTON news@empiretribune.com

According to new information out last week from Ed Butowsky, founder of the Chapwood Index, and a report from the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER), Texas is, by far, the cheapest state in America to live in with the top three least expensive cities in the country to live in being in the Lone Star State.

Not surprisingly, the New York City boroughs of Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn nabbed three spots on the list of the most expensive cities to live in the U.S. Also among the most expensive were several California cites including San Francisco.

The Big Apple is notoriously expensive, with eye-popping rents charged for the tiniest of apartments. The cost of living for a resident of Manhattan was found to be 133.5 percent higher than the national average.

With metro areas and holiday hot spots among the most enviable locales, towns in the South were found to be among the least expensive.

Harlingen, a border town on the southern tip of the state, came in at the cheapest with a cost of living index at 81.6 or 18.4 percent below the national average. Other towns in Texas – Wichita Falls, in North Texas, and McAllen, also in South Texas – came in second and third respectively.

The Chapwood Index is an analysis that provides Americans with an accurate way to identify the individual cost of living percentage increase by geographic location. Financial experts at Chapwood Investments, LLC have spent the past two years engaged in groundbreaking research that uncovers the real cost of living percentage increase for every major metropolitan area in the United States. Numerous organizations, including the C2ER, have used this information to show the most expensive and least expensive places to live and everywhere in between. The report included 300 cities in the United States and the cost of living in each.

The research done by C2ER applied the prices of 60 consumer goods and services in six key categories, including grocery items, housing, utilities, transportation, health care and miscellaneous expenses. Housing was found to be the most significant expense, accounting for an estimated 29 percent of a resident's income in a given location, according to the report.

Most expensive:

1. Manhattan, New York - 233.5% of average 

2. Brooklyn, New York - 183.4

3. Honolulu, Hawaii - 170.8

4. San Francisco, California - 163.2

5. San Jose, California - 156.5

6. Queens, New York - 151.4

7. Stamford, Connecticut - 146.7

8. Washington, DC - 145.5

9. Framingham, Massachusetts - 143.0

10. Orange County, California - 142.5

Least expensive: 

1. Harlingen, Texas - 81.6

2. Wichita Falls, Texas - 84.7

3. McAllen, Texas - 85.4

4. Muskogee, Oklahoma - 85.7

5. Norman, Oklahoma - 86.0

6. Fayetteville, Arkansas - 86.1

7. Memphis, Tennessee - 86.6

8. Ardmore, Oklahoma - 86.9

9. Springfield, Illinois - 87.0

10. San Marcos, Texas - 87.0