These 10 cities are the most affordable places to live if you work in tech

Could Detroit, Baltimore, and Bremerton supplant Mountain View, Menlo Park, and San Jose as the tech cities of the future?

These 10 cities are the most affordable places to live if you work in tech
[Photo: Patrick Tomasso/Unsplash]

Detroit has long been known as the Motor City. But thanks to its low cost of living and burgeoning tech scene, it may soon be known as Motherboard City. At least according to the researchers at Coding Dojo. They just ranked Detroit as No. 1 among the best cities to live and work in tech that may supplant the pricey locus of Silicon Valley.


Thanks to the pandemic, some things, like remote work, have actually opened up job opportunities where traditional ones hadn’t existed before. This makes the prospect of slashing expenses in cities that have a high cost of living well within reach. Especially for tech workers. To that end, Coding Dojo put together a report that ranks cities with affordable living costs as alternate options for someone looking for an entry-level or mid-level position in the industry.

The team analyzed public data from ApartmentList and On the latter, they searched not only for the number of open positions but the most jobs within a 25-mile radius of a particularly affordable city. First, the cities were ranked by housing cost (weighted at 45%) and the number of jobs (weighted at 55%). “We chose this weighting to give a slight edge to job availability and filter out cities that had very, very low rent but also very few jobs,” the authors wrote. The final ranking was based on a composite score that combined the two and weighted equally.

The top 10 cities are:

  1. Detroit, MI
  2. Baltimore, MD
  3. Bremerton, WA
  4. Warren, MI
  5. St. Louis, MO
  6. Pittsburgh, PA
  7. Huntsville, AL
  8. Phoenix, AZ
  9. Lowell, MA
  10. Minneapolis, MN

If you want to see the details on the number of jobs and the median rent for a two-bedroom, you can read the complete report here.


About the author

Lydia Dishman is a reporter writing about the intersection of tech, leadership, and innovation. She is a regular contributor to Fast Company and has written for CBS Moneywatch, Fortune, The Guardian, Popular Science, and the New York Times, among others.


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