Cincinnati Ranked No. 1 City in America Where Renters Can Afford to Live Alone, According to Study

For the third year in a row, Cincinnati has topped SmartAsset's list of the most affordable cities for renters to live alone, with the average rent for a space with less than two bedrooms coming in at $618

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Apparently this town is rife with cheap one-bedroom apartments and studios - Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Apparently this town is rife with cheap one-bedroom apartments and studios

According to a study from financial website SmartAsset, Cincinnati is the most affordable place in the U.S. to reside for renters who are living alone. We also took home the top spot in 2019 and 2018.

After comparing the top 100 largest cities in America across five metrics — average rent for spaces with less than two bedrooms, percentage of units with fewer than two bedrooms, median full-time pay, cost of living and unemployment rate — SmartAsset found:

Cincinnati, Ohio has ranked as the best city where renters can afford to live alone for all three years SmartAsset has produced this study. Though the average monthly rent for a unit with fewer than two bedrooms increased slightly (about $50) between last year and this year, the city still ranks within the best fifth of cities for that metric and two others — percentage of housing units with fewer than two bedrooms (29.60%) and cost of living ($19,713).

The study showed the Queen City has a large amount of "affordable" one-bedroom and studio apartments, and that data from 2018 indicates almost 30% of all housing units in the city are studios or one-bedrooms.

They also found the average rent for those spaces with less than two bedrooms was $618 — the sixth lowest in the nation — and that while the city has an estimated cost of living of around $19,700, Cincinnati has "the 36th-highest median earnings for full-time workers ($46,901) and the 40th-lowest May 2020 unemployment rate (12.1%)."

Cincinnati Ranked No. 1 City in America Where Renters Can Afford to Live Alone, According to Study
Photo: SmartAsset

The full top 10 (actually 11 because there was a tie for 10th) are:

  • Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Lincoln, Nebraska
  • Omaha, Nebraska
  • Tucson, Arizona
  • Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • St. Louis, Missouri
  • Lexington, Kentucky
  • Boise, Idaho
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Albuquerque, New Mexico (tie)
  • St. Paul, Minnesota (tie)
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