Buying or renting a property is stressful enough, but when you’re in a position where raising the funds can be a problem, then it soon becomes a real issue. That’s a shame, too, because it’s supposed to be a process that marks the beginning of a new chapter in your life – and often, instead, it’s just a little bit overwhelming.
Thankfully, there are certain locations littered around the planet that offer up the chance for you to live relatively cheaply all year round. You could argue that going in search of somewhere cheap isn’t exactly the priority for a lot of people and we’d agree with that, but still, it’d be nice to be able to store a few pennies away alongside actually moving into your new home.
We aren’t suggesting that these twenty cities are the best cities in the world because you could easily have a great time in London, New York, Berlin and beyond, but we’re just trying to look out for you here, guys. It’s so difficult to find affordable living that’s also going to make for a nice living experience, with experience being the keyword.
If you fork out thousands of pounds or dollars in search of your dream home then you need to be absolutely certain that it’s the place for you. There are more variables to consider with property in 2018 than ever before and while that may be a bit of a stereotypical thing to say, trust us, it’s the truth.
20 Bangkok, Thailand - Endless Fun
Bangkok is hardly a destination that’s going to be for everyone and that kind of goes without saying. Asian adventures can often serve as a stress for the majority of folks, but if you’re interested in living other there, then certain sections of Bangkok could be for you – or could be in the running.
The city itself is pretty underrated and gets a bad reputation from stuck-up travellers, when in reality, it has a lot of character. From the food to the people themselves there are very few things not to like, especially when you look at the prices to rent.
19 Gdansk, Poland - What A Place
We’ve gone on and on (and on) about Gdansk to the point where many of you may just want to go there so that you can see what all the fuss is about. We’d highly suggest that you follow those instincts, regardless of whether or not you’re reading this in Europe or in the middle of the United States.
Poland is a phenomenal country full of strong and warm individuals, as well as some of the finest architecture you’ll find across the continent. You could live here pretty comfortably, and you’d have enough left over for plenty of meals out and activities.
18 Omaha, United States - The Cornhuskers
Aside from the Cornhuskers and the College World Series, some would argue that there isn’t all too much to shout about in Omaha: but they’d be wrong. It’s a prospering city that has a lot going for it, and the locals are always pretty kind which can only be a bonus.
Omaha is certainly on the cusp of being a more notable city in US culture and it feels like the fact that it’s in a more ‘unknown’ state like Nebraska is holding it back. That seems silly to us, and before there’s a big market break out, we’d suggest you look at the housing prices for yourself.
17 Valencia, Spain - You’d Be Surprised
Sure, Valencia is one of the more well-known cities within the realms of Spanish culture, but it’s not actually that expensive. It’s certainly more affordable than the likes of Barcelona and Madrid, and those are usually pretty good benchmarks to compare yourself against.
The hot weather can tend to be a bit overbearing for some people but as long as that isn’t something that will impact you all too much, then you should be fine. Valencia is a fantastic place to live or even visit, but if it’s the latter, don’t pretend like you wouldn’t be tempted to make your stay more permanent.
16 Sofia, Bulgaria - Avoid Stereotypes
Courtesy of places like Sunny Beach, the nation of Bulgaria tends to get a pretty bad end of the stick when it comes to tourism. It’s almost as if people recognise how affordable it actually is, but choose to avoid it as a destination courtesy of stereotypical reservations.
We’re here to try and rid the world of those stereotypes, especially when it comes to Sofia. The city is absolutely splendid and you could quite easily live there, and you could also enjoy meals out five or six times a week purely because of how cheap it all is. That’s not a ‘prediction’ either.
15 Tbilisi, Georgia - On The Rise
If we’re talking about nations that are on the rise then it’s hard to leave Georgia out of the discussion, if only for their economic situation alone. It’s a very niche location which certainly helps if you like going there, because it’s not considered to be a hotbed for tourists.
That can be a good thing for if you’re looking for a nice, alternative European spot to set up camp, too, or even if you want to get yourself a nice summer home. Tbilisi is a city that stands out to us, mainly because it’s just so very aesthetically pleasing.
14 Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam - Bargain Living
Ho Chi Minh City isn’t just one of the most beautiful destinations in the East, but it’s also pretty popular for foreigners who want to start a new life. This is especially true for expat teachers, who recognise the potential of the city from a financial perspective.
There are a few grotty areas but the same can be said of quite literally anywhere on Planet Earth, and the good far outweighs the bad. It’s something different and for $1,000 a month, you definitely can’t go wrong.
Ho Chi Minh City feels like a community, and while it may seem dysfunctional at times, the same can be said of any ‘family’.
13 Tallinn, Estonia - A Whole New World
Tallinn doesn’t even look like a real place and we mean that in the nicest manner possible. The buildings are gorgeous, the locals are too, and you may as well be living in a Disney film 95% of the time.
It’s quite popular for stag and hen parties, but that’s hardly a bad thing. If you’re a freelancer who can afford to live anywhere then we’d seriously suggest this as somewhere to hang your hat, even if it’s only for a few months. At the very least you’ll be able to get some stunning views where you may end up.
12 San Jose, Costa Rica - A Sensational Country
Costa Rica is pretty stunning in all the right places, which is what makes it such a popular holiday destination for a good number of celebrities. That may lead you to initially believe that it’s quite an exclusive location, but that couldn’t be any further from the truth.
Away from the beautiful countryside, you’ve got a handful of cities that really do make Costa Rica much more accessible, and San Jose is one of them. Aside from being tax-free for businesses in certain locations, San Jose also has a great spirit that few people give it credit for, and that needs to change.
11 Yangzhou, China - An Intriguing Culture
The pollution side of things over in the East will forever serve as a big stumbling block for people wanting to move over there, mainly because of the health risks associated with that. Thankfully, while Yangzhou isn’t a complete exception, it’s much less likely to give you so many problems.
Plus, it has all the benefits of any traditionally large and ‘out there’ Chinese city. Yes, things are completely different over there in comparison to where you may be living now, but that kind of challenge is what drives a lot of folks and who are we to say no?
10 Manchester, England - A Surprising Inclusion
This is more of a ‘comparison’ entry, in the sense that Manchester is indeed quite cheap – when compared with most other large European and British cities of that size. You’re much more likely to find somewhere that’s going to suit you for $1,000 or less, and you’ll get a bunch of benefits to go alongside that.
From the music scene to the food to the many thriving businesses, there are endless options for you to choose from when it comes to activities and that’s no exaggeration. Plus, the people really are quite lovely, and that goes for most of the northern cities in England.
9 Kansas City, United States - Go Chiefs!
It really is staggering to us that more travellers don’t give Kansas City the time of day, because it’s a pretty charming city all in all. Missouri as a whole is a friendly state full of great sports teams and often a strong range when it comes to the weather – what more is there to want?
In a country that continues to suffer from division like the States, it can be hard to find somewhere like KC, but in our mind, it just seems like people may not be looking hard enough. Even if you lived just outside the city, that still wouldn’t be too much of a detriment.
8 Cape Town, South Africa - Not What You’d Expect
Unfortunately one of the overriding themes, when you think of South Africa, is the corruption that you see in a lot of the major cities. That won’t change in a hurry but thankfully steps are being taken to combat that, and one of the better cities to live in at this moment in time would be Cape Town.
It really benefitted from the 2010 FIFA World Cup in terms of infrastructure, and the city has been on the rise ever since. Upon visiting you’ll probably be left wondering what the fuss was all about (in a good way), and the same was also said of Brazil and Russia when they hosted the tournament. Perhaps there’s a trend, here.
7 Valparaiso, Chile - Hub Of South America
Located around an hour or so outside of Santiago is Valparaiso, which has all of the positives of Santiago and very few of the negatives. It’s a city that happily represents some of the biggest and best aspects of Chilean culture and how, in the modern era, nations in South America should be given the time of day more so than they have been in the past.
It feels like a business city mixed together with a holiday resort, and even if you find yourself struggling to work out if that’s a good thing or a bad thing, it’s still more than worth discovering the answer for yourself.
6 Split, Croatia - A Thriving Society
One of the best things you could do if you’re interested in travelling around Europe would be to go all along the Croatian coast whereby you can experience all of the biggest and best cities that the country has to offer. Some are much more expensive than others, though, so if you want somewhere to live for a while, Split is your best choice.
Regardless of whether you’re buying or renting, it’s somewhere that is quite laid back in comparison to the larger cities, and yet it’s equally as beautiful. Sure, that kind of thing is completely subjective most of the time, but you’ll struggle to find many people who don’t enjoy a trip over there at the very least.
5 Budapest, Hungary - Perfection
Budapest is the pinnacle of excellence in so many ways and there’s nobody on this planet who can tell us that is an understatement. We’d move there tomorrow if we could and we don’t just mean that in the figurative sense – because it literally would be that easy.
The amount of money you’d be able to save would startle you and you probably wouldn’t have to change one single thing about your way of life. In fact, we’d argue that you’d be able to expand your horizons in ways you previously thought unimaginable, through the means of the many amenities that the city offers.
4 Vienna, Austria - Clean And Comfortable
Because Vienna is so grand and seems so ‘larger than life’, you may think that it’s actually quite expensive – but you’d be wrong. There are many bargain properties to be found so long as you look hard enough, and you won’t find many European cities that are better to live in than this one.
It’s safe, it’s clean, it’s friendly, and contrary to popular belief it isn’t boring in the slightest. Even if the city itself doesn’t float your boat it offers you fantastic access to a sea of other great countries across Europe, which further emphasises just how beneficial it can be to live somewhere so central.
3 Krakow, Poland - Ho, Ho, Ho!
Krakow – a place with all of the delights to be found in Gdansk and so much more. While Gdansk may be full of everything you could ever want in a city, Krakow is just a little bit edgier and is likely to keep you on your toes.
Plus, and this should go without saying, the Christmas markets there are absolutely sensational. Honestly, there’s a reason why folks come from around the world just to visit, and it isn’t because of how good the food in Poland is (although it’s worth stating that it’s still pretty damn tasty over there).
2 Belmopan, Belize - Better Call Saul
If you understand the Breaking Bad reference in this one then we applaud you, but at the same time, we shan’t try and encourage you to take it all too literally.
There are some people reading this that will be staggered to even learn that Belize itself is a country, because it isn’t spoken about all too much outside of Central America. In actuality, it can be the perfect place to hide out if you just want to experience something different, or perhaps you just want to go somewhere far, far away. Both are pretty good reasons to try it out, in our humble opinion.
1 Rochester, United States - Pride Of NY
The state of New York has so, so much more to offer the planet than just NYC itself and that’s not a knock, it’s just the truth. Rochester is another destination that will initially seem like it could be out of your price range, but trust us, it’s worth taking the risk.
You can live a life of luxury so long as you’re smart with your money up there, which isn’t as difficult to do as it may seem. You’ve got the Big Apple just a few hundred miles away, and a whole bunch of affordable living options – and pleasant neighbourhoods for those of you with kids. What’s not to love?