Massachusetts possesses a wealth of historical significance and natural beauty. Whether you prefer hiking and skiing or learning about 18th-century history in museums, there’s something for everyone here. While cities like Boston and Cambridge have a high cost of living, there are plenty of more affordable cities in the Bay State. NewHomeSource has compiled a list of the 10 most affordable cities in Massachusetts to help you find your next home. If you want to know more about buying an affordable home in The Bay State, check out first-time homebuyer’s programs for Massachusetts.
Home Price to Income Ratio: 3.16
Average Property Tax: 5.12%
Median Household Income: $73,458
Located in the Springfield metropolitan area, the town of Ludlow is the most affordable city in Massachusetts. From the Ludlow Reservoir Shoreline Trail to the peak of Facing Rock, Ludlow has accessible hiking trails where you can admire the natural beauty of New England. For entertainment, check out the Lupa Zoo and Ludlow Country Club.
Home Price to Income Ratio: 3.39
Average Property Tax: 2.51%
Median Household Income: $51,411
Pittsfield is the largest city in Berkshire County, located near the New York border. Explore downtown Pittsfield, where you can find attractions such as the Berkshire Museum and the Colonial Theatre. Fans of the great outdoors can stretch their legs at Mass Audubon Canoe Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary or hit the slopes of Bousquet Mountain. A fan of classic literature? Visit Herman Melville’s Arrowhead, the house where he wrote Moby-Dick.
Home Price to Income Ratio: 3.96
Average Property Tax: 2.67%
Median Household Income: $39,432
With more than 155,000 residents calling it home, Springfield is one of the most populated cities in the state. Visit the collection of museums located along or near the Connecticut River, including Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, Springfield Armory National Historic Site and Springfield Museums, which encompasses four museums dedicated to science, history and art. Springfield is also home to several top colleges, a zoo and nearly 20 parks.
Home Price to Income Ratio: 3.74
Average Property Tax: 2.77%
Median Household Income: $49,679
If you’re looking for a city with plenty of open space, this may be the place for you. Located in Worcester County, Gardner is home to multiple wildlife refuges, conservation areas, hiking trails and biking paths. Brush up on local history at Gardner Museum and don’t forget to take a photo at the famous Bicentennial Giant Chair.
Home Price to Income Ratio: 3.42
Average Property Tax: 3.11%
Median Household Income: $53,225
Chicopee is located just north of Springfield, along the Connecticut River. On warm days, you can visit the 575-acre Chicopee Memorial State Park to hike and bike or go swimming and fishing in the 25-acre pond. Other notable attractions include the Polish Center of Discovery and Learning and the Chicopee Country Club.
Home Price to Income Ratio: 3.44
Average Property Tax: 2.93%
Median Household Income: $57,207
Fitchburg is located approximately 13 miles east of Gardner in Worcester County. Visit one of the waterside parks along the Nashua River or view the latest exhibition at Fitchburg Art Museum. If you need a break from the city, get a breath of fresh air at Mass Audubon’s Flat Rock Wildlife Sanctuary or the Overlook Reservoir.
7. New Bedford
Home Price to Income Ratio: 4.90
Average Property Tax: 2.79%
Median Household Income: $46,321
New Bedford is a coastal city in southern Massachusetts. Spend sunny days at East Beach or visit the historical sites of Fort Rodman and its surrounding military batteries. Or check out attractions like Buttonwood Park Zoo and the New Bedford Whaling Museum. Acushnet Cedar Swamp State Reservation resides in the city’s northern area and is home to a variety of wildlife.
Home Price to Income Ratio: 4.80
Average Property Tax: 3.35%
Median Household Income: $40,769
Holyoke is located just northwest of Chicopee on the other side of the Connecticut River. Test your hiking prowess on the trails of Mount Tom and Whiting Street Reservoir Loop or visit dinosaur prints near the river. Holyoke has a thriving downtown scene full of restaurants, bars and museums, including the International Volleyball Hall of Fame.
9. Fall River
Home Price to Income Ratio: 5.57
Average Property Tax: 2.80%
Median Household Income: $43,500
With a name like Fall River, you can expect plenty of water! Surrounded by ponds, rivers, and a bay, the city offers multiple waterside views for your morning hike. Forests and preserves cover the eastern portion of the city, while the western side has historical landmarks like Battleship Cove.
10. West Springfield
Home Price to Income Ratio: 4.24
Average Property Tax: 3.85%
Median Household Income: $53,053
West Springfield is located along the Connecticut River, on the opposite side of Chicopee and Springfield. Enjoy hiking trails, the falls of Bearhole Reservoir and the Connecticut Riverwalk and Bikeway. For entertainment, check out the local theater and country club.
Cities With the Best Home Price to Income Ratio
While the list above is sorted by the lowest overall cost of living index, the following cities have the lowest home price to income ratio, meaning you can get more home for your money.
Sarah graduated from Trinity University in 2012 with a degree in International Relations and Political Science. She writes blogs on new homes, decor, communities, and more for NewHomeSource. When she’s not writing, you can find her spending time with her three cats.