The Skinny On Affordable Housing

Where to Find It, Who Can Apply, and What it Means 

Affordable housing has become so popular, the demand is starting to exceed the supply! From its security to its cost effectiveness, singles, couples, and families can take advantage of the tremendous benefits provided with affordable and second chance housing. 

In this guide, we take a closer look at the most affordable states to rent property, the average cost of living, and how you can buy a house on a low income. 

If you are interested in affordable housing in your state or you want to know where and how to apply, we give you the skinny on the affordable housing market. 

(Image Source: Pixabay)

Is Affordable Housing Offered Everywhere? 

Affordable housing and second chance apartments have become the focus of economic development and as a means to meet the growing demand of valuable rentals for all. With investors focusing on secure, comfortable, and modern units, affordable housing is no longer attached to the idea of high crime rates and poorly maintained apartments.
Today, you can find newly renovated apartments at a fair monthly rent and in fantastic communities. You just need to know where to find them. 

Surprisingly, in 2016, the US had the lowest percentage of affordable housing compared to Europe. The US is also considered the most cost-burdened for renters with many people spending more than the stipulated 30% of their income on their rent. Large units and high demand are among the reasons that housing was considered the most expensive in the US. 

Today, smart investments and placing the needs of renters first have contributed to housing developments that no longer burden the pockets of average renters. There is greater focus on rentals with fair rates to accommodate everyone with a home no matter their income. 

Individuals and families of all education levels, income brackets, and backgrounds pursue affordable housing and second chance programs because of the tremendous benefits it provides. 

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Where Can I Find Affordable Housing in the US? 

Not all states in the US offer affordable housing but we have a list of states where you can find lower rentals in 1, 2, and even 3 bedroom units. 

You can find affordable apartments and housing to rent in Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Ohio, Memphis, and Pennsylvania to name a few. 

If you are looking for affordable housing programs and second chance apartments in the US, you can contact the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). They will be able to direct you to the relevant housing organizations and developments in your state and city. You can also get in touch with housing associations in your area to learn of lower rentals and apartments in each city. 

The HUD can also assist with Section 8 and housing voucher programs. Depending on your rental requirements, it is a good idea to discuss your interests and your position with the relevant housing association. 

If you are looking for second chance and affordable apartments in Memphis, Apartments Near Me is here to help you with your housing needs! You can speak to us to learn more about second chances and our newly renovated apartments.  

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Is Affordable Housing the Same in Different States? 

No, affordable housing is not the same in different states. If we look at Iowa for example, in 2019 it was ranked as the state with the most affordable places to live and a lower cost of living. When we compare this to California or a Northern state, rentals are much higher along with living expenses. 

While the general rule for affordable rentals is that you do not spend more than 30% of your salary on your rent, there are many people who are paying well above to keep a roof over their heads. 

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Federal Guidelines for Affordable Rent 

The federal government has issued a renting requirement for families earning $40k to $42k per year. Individuals and families should not exceed 30% of their income on their monthly rent. The purpose is to help more people access apartments they can afford to rent. While the government offers the 30% rule to prevent living above your means, the greatest saving is in the property you choose to rent. Affordable housing is one way to meet your budget, rent an apartment, and manage your pressing expenses at the same time. 

The definition for affordable housing; however, differs between states because of differences in the cost of living and the average wage per state. This is why it is so important to learn of the average cost of living and the cost for rent for states of interest. This can help you create a financial plan depending on the city or location you are moving to. 

To help you understand which states offer affordable housing, we look at the top 10 states and its rental affordability. 

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What are the Top States with Affordable Housing? 

According to the latest housing index, states in the Midwest are considered most cost effective when it comes to monthly rentals and the cost of living. 

Top 10 Midwest and Southern States Offering Affordable Housing: 

  1. Ohio
  2. Iowa
  3. Indiana 
  4. Michigan 
  5. Missouri
  6. Memphis
  7. Nebraska 
  8. North and South Dakota 
  9. West Virginia
  10. Wisconsin 

(Image Source: Pixabay)

Which State Offers Rent Below $1000 Per Month? 

If you are looking for an affordable place to live, we breakdown the regions offering rentals of under $1000 per month. But before embarking on your rental journey (especially if you are planning to move to another state), always consider the average income and the cost of living for that region. 

If you find an apartment that you like and that comes in under $1000 for monthly rent, the next step is to determine the average cost of living. If rent is cheap and your income is sufficient to cover the cost but buying groceries and paying for insurance (or other pressing expenses) leave you out of pocket, you need to rethink your choice. 

With some research and financial consideration, you can pay under $1000 a month for rent and have enough money over to cover essential expenses. Let’s take a look at the states where you can find housing and apartments for less than $1000. 

  • In West Virginia, you can find places to rent for less than $800. 
  • Ohio and Iowa are recognized among the top states for affordable rentals. You can find apartments to rent for around $550. 
  • In Memphis, newly renovated apartments range from $550 and upwards. 

(Image Source: Pixabay)

What are the Most Expensive States to Live In? 

If we look at renting rates combined, the average rent across the US is between $1200 to $1300. This is based on data from individuals who share with a roommate, who rent independently, or have a controlled monthly rent. 

Highest on the list for monthly rent is California. In California, the median rent is $1900 closely followed by Hawaii at $1700 to $1800 per month. Surprisingly, this is more than the monthly rent for similar types of New York apartments. 

Los Angeles is another expensive city to live in. Renters can expect an average monthly rent of $2600 per month. 

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How Much Do People Spend on Rent in the US? 

From the Midwest to the South, let’s take a closer look at the average expenditure on rent in the US: 

From this graph we can see that the average cost for rent in the East and the West is higher than for other regions in the US. In the South and Midwest, income rates and the cost of living are generally lower than other states which could also account for the lower rentals. 

Let’s Look at Affordable Housing in Memphis Compared to Iowa 

When we look at the median rent for cities in the US, we compare Memphis and Iowa. Both are recognized as offering a generally lower monthly rent. 

The Cost of Living 

To best compare renting rates in Memphis and Iowa, we should explore the overall cost of living in these states. 

It is around 6% to 6.5% cheaper to live in Memphis, Tennessee than Iowa. It is also more than 30% cost effective to rent a house in Memphis. Memphis has much to offer and with its range of affordable rentals, it is no wonder that more people choose to live in the city. 

The Benefits of Renting in Memphis 

Memphis has a diverse community. It offers everything from affordable apartments to rent in quiet areas to living in the hustle and the bustle of the city. With so many different neighborhoods to choose from, you are sure to find a place to rent to suit your lifestyle and your pocket. 

Memphis is a metropolitan area and one of the biggest cities in the US. Along with its affordable rentals and general cost of living, it is a popular choice for residents, whether you are single or have a family. 

You can easily find some of the most affordable places to rent along with interesting amenities and many types of exciting activities. Living in Memphis can open a world of opportunities as it caters to every type of lifestyle. If you are considering an affordable community with a suburb to suit your needs, then Memphis is the place to be. 

(Image Source: Pixabay)

Can I Buy a House on Minimum Wage? 

Considering buying an affordable home? Our guide to earning $12 to $16 an hour will help you in your home buying journey. You can find many inexpensive homes across the US. The key to purchasing an affordable home is to save for your deposit, which also places your application in a positive light. 

When you know where to start and how to navigate your finances, you can afford to purchase property no matter your income. 

(Image Source: Pixabay)

Can I Buy a Home for Less than $50K in the US? 

If you earn $50k or less, you can certainly purchase a valuable home. It all depends on your budget. Remember, not only is your monthly or yearly income considered when you apply to buy a home but also how much you can afford for a deposit, mortgage, credit history, and your monthly interest rates. 

Homes up to $300 000 can be afforded with the right budgeting and if your earnings are $50k annually. If your goal is to buy a home, then focusing on your monthly savings and managing your debts can help you achieve your goal. 

(Image Source: Pixabay)

If I am Looking for Affordable Housing, Where Can I Apply? 

If you are a renter and you are looking for an affordable apartment in Memphis then you can speak to us at Apartments Near Me. Our guide to second chance renting made easy can help those interested in second chance apartments. You can also contact the HUD to discover affordable housing programs in your area. 

You can also visit our housing application FAQ which provides a simple breakdown on the steps you can take to apply for your next home. Learn how to apply and to improve your chances of getting approved.  

Affordable Housing & You

Affordable housing is no longer the stigmatized rentals associated with high crime, derelict properties, and unsafe communities. Today, you can find affordable apartments and second chance apartments offering modern, secure, and friendly communal living. 

Singles, couples, and families can find a practical and an appealing apartment to rent that is also cost effective. Affordable housing is not only for individuals with a low income. It is for individuals and families of every income level. If you have bad credit or you simply wish to save on rent, then finding fairly priced apartments to rent is a smart choice. 

At Apartments Near Me, we believe in assisting our applicants of all income levels to find a suitable apartment to rent. If you have been previously evicted, have suffered bankruptcy, or you are simply looking for a place to save on the monthly rent, then affordable housing is the solution. Saving on the rent can also help you build a deposit for a future property to purchase. 

To determine the best value and affordability, researching each state and comparing the cost of living to the average rent will help you find a place that you can easily afford. Don’t be burdened by your monthly rent. Apply for an affordable home and take advantage of the security and the savings you will receive. 

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.