Cheapest Places to Live in Pennsylvania

By PropertyClub Team
Jul 6th 2023
Pennsylvania is a fantastic place to call home, with plenty to offer, from world-class cities like Philadelphia to charming small towns. However, the cost of living in the state can be quite high. Read on to discover the ten cheapest places to live in PA in 2023.

hash-mark10 Cheapest Places to Live in PA

  1. West Mifflin
  2. Johnstown
  3. Erie
  4. Pottsville
  5. Reading
  6. Oil City
  7. Harrisburg
  8. Lancaster
  9. Allentown
  10. Pittsburgh

hash-mark1. West Mifflin

The cheapest place to live in Pennsylvania is West Mifflin. Located about 10 miles outside of Pittsburgh, this city offers a unique suburban experience with a touch of urban convenience. This charming community is characterized by its friendly atmosphere, picturesque neighborhoods, and a strong sense of community, allowing its residents to enjoy a comfortable lifestyle. With excellent schools, a low crime rate, and a welcoming community spirit, it’s surprising that the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in West Mifflin is only $650.00 per month.  

hash-mark2. Johnstown

Johnstown is the second-cheapest place to live in Pennsylvania. Living in Johnstown presents a unique blend of small-town charm and natural beauty. The city is particularly known for its rich heritage and stunning landscapes, which include the Laurel Highlands and the Conemaugh River. Residents here will also find a vibrant arts scene, with several local galleries, theaters, and annual festivals that celebrate the region’s cultural diversity. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Johnstown is $685.00, making this the second-most affordable place to live in Pennsylvania. 

hash-mark3. Erie

Erie is one of the most affordable places to live in Pennsylvania for waterfront living. Situated along the shores of Lake Erie, this city offers a unique source of natural beauty and is renowned for its stunning sunsets, sandy beaches, and recreational opportunities. Favorite attractions here include Presque Isle State Park, a scenic peninsula jutting into Lake Erie, which offers picturesque trails, miles of walkable beachfront, and abundant wildlife. Rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Erie averages $725.00 per month, making it one of the most affordable places to live in Pennsylvania. 

hash-mark4. Pottsville

Pottsville is another cheap place to live in Pennsylvania. Home to only 13,000 people, this city offers a distinct small-town experience, complete with a rich history and a tight-knit community. Residents of Pottsville can enjoy a slower pace of life, where friendly faces and warm greetings are a common occurrence. The town also boasts an array of well-preserved architectural gems, including Victorian-era homes and historic landmarks that showcase its storied past. With home prices and average local rents among the lowest in the state, Pottsville’s rural charm and natural beauty are not to be overlooked when considering the cheapest cities in Pennsylvania.  

hash-mark5. Reading

Reading is one of the most affordable cities in Pennsylvania. It also has plenty to offer residents. Located in Berks County, this city offers a dynamic urban experience with a rich cultural tapestry and a bustling city atmosphere. It is a vibrant city known for its diverse population and wide range of cultural amenities and attractions. In addition to a thriving arts scene, Reading is also home to a variety of dining options that cater to various tastes — from eclectic eateries to international cuisine. With rent for a one-bedroom apartment averaging $925.00 per month, Reading is an essential part of Pennsylvania’s cheapest cities. 

hash-mark6. Oil City

Oil City is one of the cheapest places to live in Pennsylvania for those interested in a peaceful lifestyle. Situated in Venango County, Oil City provides its nearly 10,000 residents with a harmonious blend of history, natural beauty, and a close-knit community. Complete with a charming downtown area lined with historic buildings and small businesses, this city is the ideal living situation for finding breathtaking views and opportunities for outdoor recreation. Homes for sale in Oil City average $77,000, making it a cheap city for Pennsylvania home buyers. 

hash-mark7. Harrisburg

In addition to being the state capital, Harrisburg is also one of the cheapest places to live in Pennsylvania. Home to about 50,000 people, this city offers a truly urban living experience with an abundance of modern amenities. As the capital city of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg is renowned for its rich history, iconic landmarks, and beautifully preserved architecture. The city also offers numerous cultural amenities, such as festivals, universities, and diverse dining options — all of which are draws for local residents. Despite everything the city has to offer, rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Harrisburg averages at only $1,095.00.

hash-mark8. Lancaster

Lancaster is one of the cheapest cities in Pennsylvania. Home to about 58,000 people, this city offers a charming and idyllic living experience, blending together rich history, picturesque landscapes, and a strong local community. Residents of Lancaster enjoy the best of both worlds — a vibrant downtown area featuring unique shops, art galleries, and eclectic dining options, as well as rolling farmlands and scenic countryside. Other favorite attractions include local farmers’ markets, theaters, music venues, and outdoor recreation. With rents averaging close to $1,147.00 per month, Lancaster is considered one of the cheapest places to live in PA. 

hash-mark9. Allentown

In addition to being one of the cheapest places to live in Pennsylvania, Allentown is also one of the largest. This dynamic urban city is home to about 126,000 people, making it the third-largest city in the state. As such, Allentown offers a dynamic urban living situation, complete with a vibrant downtown area, bustling entertainment districts, and a diverse range of dining options, festivals, and other cultural events. With rents in this area averaging $1,195.00 per month, Allentown is certain to impress those requiring a more upbeat living experience. 

hash-mark10. Pittsburgh

Not only is Pittsburgh one of the cheapest cities to live in Pennsylvania, but it is also one of the most famous. Known as both the “Steel City” and the “City of Bridges,” Pittsburgh showcases its industrial heritage while embracing its transformation into a thriving modern metropolis. A sports-loving city, this area is home to passionate fan bases for football, baseball, hockey, and more. The city’s iconic skyline, framed by the picturesque three rivers, provides breathtaking views from numerous vantage points. With so much to offer, it’s shocking that rental rates in Pittsburgh average at only $1,259.00 per month, keeping it on the list of Pennsylvania’s cheapest places to live.