Memphis Ranks No. 2 ‘Cheapest City’ in the Country

May home sales in Shelby County increased 25 percent year over year, while average sales price saw a 4 percent bump from May 2011.

But 57 percent of home sales last month were valued at $100,000 or less, and others are noticing.

Memphis has ranked as the No. 2 “cheapest city in the country,” according to Yahoo Real Estate. Apparently our housing costs 31.3 percent below the national average and ties Winston-Salem, N.C. as the nation’s fourth-cheapest market (and the three-bedroom house listed for $2,000 on isn’t helping our case).

Other areas where Memphis falls below the national average include utilities (81.3 percent), miscellaneous goods (10.2 percent), transportation (9.1 percent), groceries (6.9 percent) and health care (3.6 percent), according to the report.

The list is based on cost-of-living figures on some 60 goods and services, from doctor’s visits to T-bone steaks. The data is then run through a weighting system to give more prominence to things such as rent and mortgage bills.

There’s also a heavily weighted “miscellaneous” category that serves as a catch-all for everything from bowling prices to dry-cleaning costs.