3 budget USA states for house buyers

Photo by Joey Csunyo on Unsplash

Rising property prizes are not just an issue in the UK. It is a global phenomenon. Countries all over the world are reporting exuberant costs for both buying and renting. And for many, the USA is leading the charts in that regard. Yet some states and cities are not as bad as others. Here we’ll go over 3 of the cheapest states for prospective home owners where they can find affordable residences. For now, at least.

1: Oklahoma
The median home value in Oklahoma is around $150,000.  With over 4 million inhabitants, it is the 28th most populated state in the USA. Popular cities for buyers include Tulsa (median home value $130,000) and the state capital Oklahoma City (median home value $160,000). The state itself has a highly varied landscape with mountains and forests. It is known for its natural resources such as gas and oil, and for its agriculture. Regardless of where you purchase a home in Oklahoma, you’re bound to have a nice view!

2: Alabama
In contrast to Oklahoma’s natural wealth, Alabama’s largest employer is the healthcare sector. Also known as the Cotton State, Alabama is known for its cars, being one of the largest auto-exporting states in the country. The median home value in Alabama is $155,000. Popular cities for buyers include Birmingham (median home value $80,000 – $90,000), which was named after England’s very own Birmingham, and Montgomery (median home value $120,000). Be warned: summers in Alabama are notorious in the USA. However, the winters are relatively mild.

3: West Virginia
West Virginia is generally considered the cheapest US state for home buyers. With under 2 million residents, West Virginia is one of the smaller states. Since it sits so close to the Appalachians, it’s a great place for adventurous treks such as hiking or skiing. Older people favour West Virginia. In fact, it has the oldest population in the USA, with a median age of 40. The median house value is just $115,000, and if you go looking in cities like Beckley or Huntington, you could easily find lower.

House hunting in the USA: get yourself an ESTA

If you’re looking to buy a house in the USA, online pictures alone will of course never suffice. You need to see the place up close and in person. And to do that, you need an ESTA. The ESTA is the official substitute for the US visa for British travellers. The UK is part of America’s Visa Waiver Program. Along with other countries in Europe, British citizens don’t need a visa to travel to the USA. Instead, they can apply for an ESTA, which is both cheaper and easier to get.

To submit an ESTA application, the online form needs to be filled in. Once that is done, the form is assessed and if no errors are found, the ESTA is approved likely the same day. Once approved, you are allowed to travel to the USA (barring any travel restrictions such as the current COVID-19 ones). The ESTA is not a paper document. Instead, it is electronically linked to your passport. At the airport, all you need to do is have your passport scanned in order to board the plane. Make sure you are applying with the right passport. Certain passport types are not eligible for travel with an ESTA, such as British Overseas Citizen passports.