Forbes has ranked Buffalo one of 2014 America’s Most Affordable Cities (see here). Not only did they include Buffalo in the ranking, they also posted a nice image of the city (rather unusual for national media that normally likes to cast disparaging images of the city). According to Forbes, the criteria for the ranking is as follows:
We started with America’s 100 largest Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) and Metropolitan Divisions (MDs), all with populations of 600,000 or more. Then we factored in housing affordability, using the Housing Opportunity Index from the National Association of Home Builders and Wells Fargo. We also considered the cost-of-living index developed by Sperling’s Best Places, and factored in the cost of food, utilities, gas, transportation, medical expenses, and miscellaneous expenses. Cities with a cost-of-living rank above 100 on the Sperling index have higher prices for these day-to-day goods than the national average. Finally, we weighted these factors, in line with the methodology the Bureau of Labor Statistics uses for the weightings of its Consumer Price Index (where housing is weighted just under 32%). Because housing is such an important expense to most people, we tipped the scales a bit higher.
Buffalo must continue to use this statistic to its advantage. Whether it’s young people purchasing homes, or being able to do things that can be limiting in other cities. Buffalo is a breeding ground for artists and entrepreneurs – we continue to hear the stories of people moving back (or simply staying) to start their dream projects, mainly due to the affordable cost of living… think Pausa Art House, Dreamland, Shakti Yoga, and the list goes on – young people picking up inexpensive properties and investing in myriad neighborhoods on the upswing.