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Roanoke Region Offers Lowest Cost of Living in VA

The Roanoke Region has been ranked again at the top of the list when it comes to the cost of living in Virginia.

Numbers released by the Council for Community and Economic Research for the 1st quarter of 2014 rank the Roanoke metro area as having the lowest cost of living index in the state. With an index of 91.6, costs in Roanoke are 8.4% lower than the national average of 100. 

The numbers put Roanoke well below the national average for costs and ahead of similarly sized metro markets in the South such as Richmond (100.6), Asheville (105.7) and Chattanooga (94). New York City ranked highest in cost of living with an index more than twice the national average (220.3).

The Cost of Living Index measures regional differences in the cost of housing, utilities, grocery items, transportation, health care and miscellaneous goods and services. 

Thank you to the Roanoke Regional Parthership for sharing this good news!

All-Cash Sales Up Nationwide

The market share of all-cash purchases is on the rise, despite declines in distressed sales and investor activity, according to the National Association of REALTORS.

Lawrence Yun, NAR Chief Economist, said the findings are counterintuitive. "Distressed home sales, most popular with investors who pay cash, have declined notably in the past two years, yet the share of all-cash purchases has risen," he said. "At the same time, investors have declined as a market share, indicating other changes have been underway in the marketplace."

All-cash purchases rose from 29 percent in 2012 to 33 percent in the first quarter of 2014. Distressed home sales declined from 26 percent of the national market in 2012 to 15 percent in the first quarter of this year.

Roanoke Named One of Most Affordable Cities

The website recently published a list of the six most affordable cities in America for retirees. And Roanoke made the list!

Cities were chosen based on low tax rates, low cost of living and amenities including recreational activities, cultural events and entertainment.

Among the reasons Roanoke made the list: the cost of living is 11 points lower than the national average, the state sales tax is relatively low and the city and surrounding area are home to lots of outdoor activity options and entertainment venues. Cultural diversity also factored into quality of life in Roanoke.

The other cities on the list (in no particular order) are Spokane, Wash; Savannah, Ga; Pittsburgh, Pa; Lousiville, Ky; and Columbus, Ind.

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