Yes, you can buy a house in a thriving market. Here are 9 homes under $150,000 that prove it.
Price versus location: It’s always the big trade-off when searching for the right house. You don’t want to tie yourself to a mortgage you can barely afford, but you don’t want commit to a cheaper location you don’t love, either. Fret no longer. There are affordable homes for sale in or near some of the hottest real estate markets in the country right now.
Not only do these homes feature awesome amenities and locations in desirable neighborhoods, they’re all priced at $150,000 or less—well below the median value of the average owner-occupied American home.
1. North Charleston, South Carolina
When comparing property perks near Charleston, the city of North Charleston itself should be considered one of them. A more affordable alternative than buying in downtown Charleston, this diverse and growing community plays host to Riverfront Park (home to community festivals and events), plenty of shopping and dining, as well as cultural attractions such as the North Charleston Fire Museum and the North Charleston Coliseum Complex.
Tidy shutters and a yard with room to roam complete the curb appeal of this newly renovated North Charleston home. Inside there are new features throughout—and there’s great Thai food just around the corner, which really takes the (fish) cake.
2. San Antonio, Texas
For those seeking a location convenient to downtown, but with a little more breathing room, San Antonio‘s Uptown neighborhood is a good match. This family-oriented section of the city is replete with parks and residential streets. It also offers easy access to major thoroughfares for a quick ride to Toyota Field, Morgan’s Wonderland, The Forum at Olympia Parkway (one of the largest shopping centers in Texas), and, of course, downtown San Antonio.
With a fenced-in backyard featuring a tricycle-ready patio, this three-bedroom, 1,772-square-foot home on a sidewalk-lined street could easily meet the needs of a young family.
3. Phoenix, Arizona
Condo living is huge in Phoenix. Paring condo amenities, like sand volleyball and an outdoor pool, with Papago Park right across the street makes The Riverwalk community an outdoor lover’s paradise. The 1,200-acre park is home to the Phoenix Zoo, Desert Botanical Garden, golf courses, and countless desert trails. The park—along with a quick commute to downtown Phoenix, Tempe, and Scottsdale—proves Camelback East to be one of Phoenix’s more desirable neighborhoods.
The scene’s not too bad inside this one-bedroom, 846-square-foot condo either. The home features quartz countertops, trendy white cabinetry, and high-end appliances, giving the desert condo a modern feel.
4. Bradenton, Florida
Funky color schemes are all over the cottages and bungalows of Bradenton’s Village of the Arts, a working artists’ community less than a quarter mile north of the Tampa suburb. The largest arts district on the Gulf Coast, the community owes its vibrancy to an eclectic mix of galleries, specialty boutiques, and restaurants. In addition to the Village itself, Bradenton’s top attractions are the Riverwalk, Robinson Nature Preserve, South Florida Museum, and gorgeous Gulf beaches.
All of the above are within a 10-mile radius of this one-bedroom cottage in Bradenton. Built in 1925, it offers added living space in the form of a fenced-in yard, complete with an oversized gazebo, tropical landscaping, and citrus trees.
5. Colorado Springs, Colorado
Fun fact: The inventor Nikola Tesla had an “experimental station” in Colorado Springs’ Knob Hill neighborhood in 1899. It only existed for five years, and Tesla worked with artificial lightning and tested wireless power there. Nowadays, the neighborhood of small historical homes has an outsized number of military residents and enough nearby restaurants that you’ll never lack for food options.
Many of those restaurants are walkable from this cheerful two-bedroom townhouse. With a large yard and a number of nearby parks, it comes with plenty of opportunities for young, active families to stretch their legs.
6. Grand Rapids, Michigan
Kentwood is fewer than six miles south of downtown Grand Rapids, and while it’s quieter there than in the heart of Michigan’s second largest city, there’s still plenty nearby to satisfy an excitement craving. Case in point: Jaden James Brewery, Woodland Mall, Kentwood Ice Arena, multiple disc golf courses, and dozens of eateries. For the youngsters, there’s the seasonal splash pad at the 15-acre Veterans Memorial Park.
That splash pad is just a five-minute walk from this move-in-ready home. The 952-square-foot house has three bedrooms, one bathroom, and a large yard that could easily accommodate a hammock or swing set (or both).
7. Jacksonville, Florida
Jacksonville’s historic Murray Hill neighborhood is known for its affordability thanks to its large number of smaller homes. Though similarly sized, the area is also flush with an interesting variety of architectural styles, making this residential community anything but cookie-cutter. And if you need to commute to work downtown, you’re in luck: Downtown JAX is only a 10-minute drive.
Just across the street from the 10-acre Murray Hill Playground is this nicely staged brick bungalow. Recently renovated inside and out, the cheery home hosts two bedrooms, one bathroom, and a modern eat-in kitchen under a brand-new roof.
8. Fort Myers, Florida
Consider yourself a sports fanatic? Put Westminster on your radar. Situated about 10 miles southeast of Fort Myers, the area is home to Westminster Golf Club’s 18-hole championship golf course. Plus, JetBlue Park at Fenway South, better known as the official spring training facility of the Boston Red Sox, can be reached in mere minutes. Westminster also has such gems as the Fort Myers Brewing Company and is within an hour of the beautiful Gulf beaches of Estero and Sanibel islands.
And if you scoop up this two-bedroom, three-bathroom townhouse, you can also hone your own athletic skills. The gated community has a heated pool, basketball, and tennis courts.
9. Daytona Beach, Florida
Daytona Beach may be famous for the roar of car engines heard every February during the annual Daytona 500 NASCAR race, but the rest of the year provides a more serene atmosphere. The Main Street Bridge connects residents to the Main Street Pier, Daytona Beach Boardwalk, Daytona Lagoon, and, of course, the beach.
You don’t even have to go that far to find tranquility at this four-bedroom, two-bathroom home. From the prime location of its roomy porch you can hear the bells of the Basilica of St. Paul’s Cathedral Church, which have been ringing for 125 years.
Originally published June 2, 2017; updated January 16, 2018.