Starter homes in Detroit came in at a median price of $48,129, making them far more affordable to local residents and renters.

Here, the average income of renters came in at $25,004. Meanwhile, the income required to afford a starter home would be just $19,103.

Fundrise helps you invest in real estate without having to buy a house. Let their state-of-the-art technology and in-house experience open the door to new opportunities today.

Sign Up


Although Tulsa, Oklahoma, is second on the list, home values here see a significant spike compared to the Motor City. Here, the median starter home came in at $95,481, which is almost double the Detroit prices.

However, renters make on average about $10,000 more than their Detroit counterparts, with an average income at $35,039. And that’s more than enough to get into the market — they would only need $29,524 to be able to afford a starter home.


Memphis, Tennessee starts to become a little less affordable, with starter homes costing less than Tulsa, but Memphians also get paid less than Tulsans.

Here, the median starter home costs $87,714, and renters make an average of $30,093. Still, renters would only need to make $27,966 to afford a starter home.

Take a break from the stock market and start building your real estate portfolio. CrowdStreet gives you access to commercial real estate investment opportunities.

Invest Now

Oklahoma City

Finally, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, really starts to heat the list up, surging past that $100,000 mark.

Here the median price for a starter home costs $126,442, with the average renter making $37,211. This is just above what they would need to afford a starter home, at $37,071. That’s really pushing the term “affordability” to its upper limit.

Where to avoid

While these were the most affordable places to seek out a starter home, the list also identifies places where aspiring homeowners are likely to be left out in the cold. The top two here should come as no surprise.

And really, if the most affordable homes still come in at over $1 million, can you really call it a starter home?

So, if you’re looking to set up home while you wait to make it big in Los Angeles, or to live the glamorous New York City life, your $40,000 salary isn’t going to do much for you.

Los Angeles is officially the most unaffordable place to live, with renters making an average $49,568 per year, and needing $166,937 annually to afford a home.

The situation was only slightly better in New York City, where renters made an average of $52,724 per year. However, they’d need to make at least $156,343 to afford a starter home in the Big Apple.

Even with New York in there, cities in California made up eight of the top 15 most unaffordable places to live. So if you’re looking for a starter home, it looks like you may just be California dreaming.

Get a piece of commercial real estate

Enhance your portfolio with high-return commercial real estate

First National Realty Partners is the #1 option for accredited investors seeking superior risk-adjusted returns in the grocery-anchored necessity-based retail space.

While commercial real estate has always been reserved for a few elite investors, outperforming the S&P 500 over a 25-year period, First National Realty Partners allows you to access institutional-quality commercial real estate investments — without the leg work of finding deals yourself.

Invest with First National Realty Partners now.

About the Author

Amy Legate-Wolfe

Amy Legate-Wolfe

Freelance contributor

Amy Legate-Wolfe is an investment junkie, who aims to help others get hooked by providing well-researched advice. After receiving a masters in journalism from Western University, Amy worked for Huff Post and, while freelancing for organizations such as the CBC, Motley Fool Canada and Financial Post. Amy Legate-Wolfe is an experienced personal finance writer and freelance contributor working with

What to Read Next


The content provided on MoneyWise is information to help users become financially literate. It is neither tax nor legal advice, is not intended to be relied upon as a forecast, research or investment advice, and is not a recommendation, offer or solicitation to buy or sell any securities or to adopt any investment strategy. Tax, investment and all other decisions should be made, as appropriate, only with guidance from a qualified professional. We make no representation or warranty of any kind, either express or implied, with respect to the data provided, the timeliness thereof, the results to be obtained by the use thereof or any other matter.