Affordable Living: 10 East Coast Gems with Great Safety Records

When you think of the East Coast, cities like Boston and New York may come to mind, known for their expensive lifestyles. 

However, hidden among these high-profile destinations are charming and budget-friendly cities with remarkable livability scores and low crime rates. 

GOBankingRates embarked on a mission to unveil these hidden gems by analyzing data on population, crime rates, livability, and the costs of essentials like rent, groceries, healthcare, utilities, and transportation. 

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Here are the top 10 cities offering both affordability and safety

affordable-living: 10-east-coast-gems-with-great-safety-records
When you think of the East Coast, cities like Boston and New York may come to mind, known for their expensive lifestyles.

1. Staunton, Virginia

Monthly total cost: $3,287.52

Affordable average rent: $1,485.83

Low monthly expenses for groceries, healthcare, utilities, transportation, and miscellaneous items totaling $1,801.69. Despite its low costs, Staunton has a higher violent crime rate of 140.56 per 100,000 residents, which affected its ranking.

2. Port Orange, Florida

Monthly total cost: $3,999.20

Impressive livability index of 82

A meager crime rate of 45.29 per 100,000 translates to 29 violent crimes in a city of 64,037.

Affordable average monthly rents at $2,049.77, and the lowest miscellaneous costs at just $75.51 monthly.

3. Concord, North Carolina

Monthly total cost: $3,732.78

Livability index: 79

Affordable average monthly rents of $1,838.55.

The first of five North Carolina cities to crack the top 10, offering cheap and secure living options.

4. Wake Forest, North Carolina

Monthly total cost: $3,894.89

Admirable livability index of 84

Affordable average monthly rents of $1,906.96.

A low property crime rate of 1043.11 per 100,000 residents, amounting to just 536 instances over the past year in the city of 51,385.

5. Kingston, Pennsylvania

Monthly total cost: $3,277.88

Meager cost of living, primarily due to an average rent cost of just $1,341.64 per month.

A small town with only 12 violent crimes and 207 property crimes reported in the past year, contributing to its high livability index of 80.

6. Holly Springs, North Carolina

Monthly total cost: $4,153.58

The highest monthly total expenditure on this list is offset by a very high livability score of 85.

Prices remain low on a national basis, with average monthly rents at $2,203.86.

A low violent crime rate of just 66.07 per 100,000 residents translates to only 30 violent crimes in a city of 45,406.

7. Brunswick, Maine

Monthly total cost: $4,020.43

Higher costs than others on this list but compensated by an even higher livability score of 87.

Average monthly rents are $2,116.67, and the city enjoys low crime rates, with just 16 instances of violent crime over the past year in a town of 21,888.

Healthcare is remarkably affordable in Brunswick.

8. Apex, North Carolina

Monthly total cost: $4,031.20

Shines with a livability index of 87.

A low crime rate of 54.53 violent crimes per 100,000 people.

The city of 66,024 boasts reasonably low average monthly rents at just $2,093.71.

9. Blacksburg, Virginia

Monthly total cost: $3,983.73

The top choice for those prioritizing safety.

Has the lowest violent crime rate and property crime rate among the top 10, at 43.72 and 581.43, respectively.

Low transportation costs contribute to Blacksburg’s affordability. The city of 45,749 also enjoys an extraordinary livability index of 88, one of the nation’s highest.

10. Cary, North Carolina

Monthly total cost: $3,736.10

A top pick for safe and affordable living on the East Coast. Both violent crime and property crime rates are well below the national average.

Costs are low for a city with 178,600 residents, including average rent costs of just $1,820.71. An incredible livability index of 90, one of the highest in the entire country.

These East Coast cities offer the perfect blend of affordability and safety, making them ideal places to call home. 

If you’re seeking a cost-effective and secure living environment on the East Coast, these cities should be

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