18 Affordable Places to Call Home for Less Than $1,000 Monthly

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Money makes the world go round. Many of the decisions you make are influenced by your financial situation, including the place you call home or the places you travel to.

Living in a mansion is a dream come true, but that’s only possible if you have the money to support that lifestyle. If you’re on the frugal side or have a lower income, you may want to live in a place with low costs and a reasonable quality of life.

To help you choose the perfect place to call home, we’ve collected several options where you can live happily with a budget of less than $1,000 per month. We considered the reported cost of living in different countries to create this list.

1. Thailand

Chang Mai, Thailand MSN
Image Credit: DepositPhotos.

With a population of 5.68 million, the cost of living in Thailand, particularly in Bangkok, falls around $902 per month. If you’re looking for a more affordable option, you might want to check out Phuket and Chiang Mai or even consider the island lifestyle in Koh Phangan.

You can rent a simple 1-bedroom apartment in Chiang Mai for only $200 or an entire house for $400. If you choose to live on the stunning island, you can get a villa with a pool in Koh Phangan for only $600.

2. Indonesia

Credit: Depositphotos

Indonesia is another Asian country you can call home without having an empty bank account every month. In the country’s capital, Jakarta, you can live a comfortable life for just $718 monthly. 

Bali is a great choice for a tropical lifestyle, but the cost of living is slightly higher compared to Jakarta. In Bali they do have a lot more Western comforts and influences, if that’s what you’re looking for.

3. Portugal

Peniche, Portugal
Credit: DaLiu/Depositphotos

Portugal is another place to stay — who doesn’t want warm weather and historic towns within arm’s reach? There’s just one catch: the cost of living. In cities like Lisbon, you might need around $1,286 monthly for a comfortable lifestyle. 

To live below $1,000 successfully, choose somewhere outside town with cheaper rent like Porto, Aveiro, or Cascais. If you prefer to live in Lisbon, you’d have to live in a one-bedroom apartment to reduce expenses. 

4. India

Varanasi, India
Credit: Depositphotos

India has a significantly low cost of living of $484 per month, which will make you feel rich with your $1,000 monthly budget. However, staying in major cities like Delhi can be a bit chaotic, especially with a population of 26.5 million. Goa and Kolkata (formerly Calcutta) are the ideal places if you’re really set on India. 

India lets you stay as a tourist for up to 6 months, which gives you a chance to experience the lifestyle before you decide to relocate. For stays under 2 months, an e-visa is an easy option.

5. Ecuador

Cuenca, Ecuador.
Credit: Depositphotos

Ecuador’s average cost of living is $815. There are two major areas you might want to consider: its capital, Quito, or tourist-favorite Cuenca.

Quito offers a fast-paced city life, ideal for those who love the energy. But if you want a more relaxing atmosphere, Cuenca is your spot. Plus, the entire city of Cuenca is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, so history is around every corner.

6. China

Shanghai, China MSN
Image Credit: King of Hearts – CC BY-SA 4.0/Wiki Commons.

If you want to make China your new home, you can do so. You can live in Beijing for exactly $1,000 per month. Try living in Yangzhou and other eastern cities for a more affordable cost of living (and fresher air, too). 

One thing you should know is that if you live in China, you need to get a VPN. Many sites are blocked in the country, so we suggest you subscribe to a VPN service.

7. Bulgaria

Plovdiv, Bulgaria
Credit: Depositphotos

Bulgaria’s surprisingly low cost of living (approximately $773) makes it a practical choice for anyone looking for a new home. The country’s capital, Sofia, is the go-to option for many, but Plovdiv also has its charm. 

If you love wine, Bulgaria’s wonderful vineyards can easily convince you to stay. But the country offers more than just grape goodness. The hospitable locals are chill and relaxed in winter, then burst with life during summer. Don’t miss the chance to soak up their culture and interact with a new community.

8. Malaysia

Georgetown, Penang Island in Malaysia
Image Credit: bloodua/DepositPhotos.

Malaysia is another affordable Asian country. You can call Malaysia your home for $582 a month. The most popular locations in the country people choose to visit are Penang and Kuala Lumpur — the former for its historical significance and the latter for an active social life. 

The country offers the My Malaysian Second Home (MM2H) Plan, where tourists are encouraged to invest $100,000 in the country for faster residency and, eventually, citizenship approvals. If you want to try living in the country first, you have 90 days to get a feel of it.

9. Vietnam

Hanoi, Vietnam skyline at night MSN
Image Credit: Ntml4507 – CC BY-SA 4.0/Wiki Commons.

Vietnam has a cost of living of around $702 and a population of 10.4 million. The country is generally affordable, so in terms of expenses, anywhere can work for you. However, Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) is often the first choice for many. 

Vietnam’s Saigon offers a vibrant life, especially with the friendly locals and scrumptious local cuisine. For only $500 per month, you can live in a comfortable home in the country.

10. Philippines

The Philippines
Credit: Depositphotos

The Philippines is a popular and affordable place to live, with a cost of living of $614 and breathtaking beaches that will make you never want to leave. Bonifacio Global City in Luzon and Cebu City in Visayas are the perfect options for a comfortable city life. 

If you want a life near the beach, Coron in Palawan and Siargao are some of the favorite choices of expats in the country. Despite the tempting locations you can call home, manage your expectations in terms of the slow internet connection in the country. 

11. Romania

Brasov, Romania
Credit: Depositphotos

Romania’s general cost of living is $821, which is a good deal if your goal is to live below $1,000 every month. Many consider the country for its aesthetics, which are dominated by classical architecture.

Bucharest is a great place to live in, with one of the lowest living costs in Europe. Despite this, the city maintains a high standard of living and offers the necessities and luxuries you might enjoy.

12. Grenada

The City of St. Georges, Grenada
Image Credit: Martin Falbisoner, CC BY-SA 4.0/Wiki Commons.

Grenada reportedly has a cost of living of $1,069, but you can adjust your expenses depending on where you stay on the island. You just need to forgo eating out every day to prioritize rent payments and essential bills. 

You can find a 1-bedroom apartment for $400 per month, but you have to skip the main beach areas like L’Anse Aux Epines. Look for an apartment a little bit further from the sea; you can take a quick drive to the beach whenever you have time to spare.

13. Mexico

Mérida, Mexico
Credit: Depositphotos

Many consider Mexico to be an ideal retirement destination. In terms of monthly living expenses, Mexico City’s is quite high at $1,288, but the country’s average is $982. This means you need to consider other places in the country if you want to live below $1,000.

Playa del Carmen and Merida are some of the most popular options with their colorful homes. If you love surfing, San Pacho is the perfect home for you. 

14. Turkey

Alacati, Turkey
Credit: Depositphotos

Turkey is a country rich in culture, and you can explore it by making it your home. The country’s cost of living falls to $800, and you can definitely live below $1,000 every month. 

Turkey offers two amazing options for budget-minded travelers. Ankara, the capital, might seem like the obvious choice. However, an increasing number of people see the appeal of Antalya, a coastal city. Beyond affordability, Antalya’s beautiful beaches and historic sites are worth visiting. Also, the warm Mediterranean climate lets you live the dream beach life without going broke.

15. Colombia

Medellin, Colombia
Image Credit: boggy22/DepositPhotos.

Colombia’s cost of living is $735, and it’s actually quite safe today, unlike its old reputation. Cartagena and Medellin are the perfect spots to call home; the former offers easy access to the beach, and the latter is filled with waterfalls and rainforests you can get lost. 

You can live in Colombia for under $1,000 by choosing an apartment that costs less than $500. The key is to move away from the expensive homes on the coast.

16. Serbia

River Sava in Belgrade, Serbia
Image Credit: VladimirNenezic/DepositPhotos.

Serbia has an average cost of living set at $977 monthly. The low cost is all thanks to the nation’s strong agricultural industry, so you can expect fresh, high-quality food everywhere you go.

If you’re feeling adventurous, Belgrade, the capital city, offers a fun and active lifestyle that won’t pressure you to splurge too much. In terms of cultural heritage and tradition, you’ll surely appreciate Serbia’s mix of Western and Eastern influences.

17. Chile

Historical site in Santiago Chile MSN
Image Credit: MaciejBledowski/DepositPhotos.

Chile is also a good option when considering a new place to call home. While the cost of living in Santiago exceeds $1,000, Valparaiso presents a cost-saving alternative. It’s just an hour away from Santiago.

Monthly rent in Valparaiso can be as low as $420. However, even if the average internet speed is 150 Mbps, it can be considerably slower outside Santiago (i.e., Valparaiso). 

18. Georgia

Tbilisi, Georgia
Credit: Depositphotos

Georgia is a close call in terms of budget-friendly places since the country’s cost of living falls at $968. However, you can choose to live in rural areas and take advantage of monthly rents under $500. 

The best thing about considering Georgia as your new home is that you have a year of visa-free entry to test if you really want to live there. You can even open a business as a tourist.

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Credit: DaLiu/Depositphotos

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Paris, France MSN
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Market Square Krakow
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