25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

Most Affordable College Towns in New York;-One of the most expensive expenditures you can make in life is a college or university degree. Today’s students need to budget for expenses like food, transportation, and off-campus accommodation in addition to tuition and room and board. Fortunately, the cost of living varies greatly among American college communities.

Despite having a cost of living that is around 29% more than the national average, New York is still significantly more cheap than many of its East Coast and New England neighbors. For any of the more than 100 schools and institutions in New York, this is wonderful news for the students there.

Methodology for Ranking the Most Affordable College Towns in New York
We started by making a comprehensive list of all the college towns in the state of New York. We researched Sperling’s Best Places and examined prices for housing, groceries, healthcare, transportation, and utilities to determine which college towns are the most cheap. The national average was then used to compare those expenses. Before reducing our list to the top 25 college towns in New York, we took into account aspects including amenities, crime rates, public transit, and general quality of life.

25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

1.Fredonia

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New York State University in Fredonia
Cost of living: 49.6% less than the state average and 20.2% less than the national average.
The small town of Fredonia, which is surrounded by vineyards and wineries in western New York, is home to a state institution. At first look, Fredonia could appear like an unexpected choice for a college town due to its village-like environment and almost exquisite atmosphere.

In fact, this community of a little over 11,000 people is relaxed, close-knit, and nothing but amiable. Off-campus college students can locate affordable apartments on calm streets. All things considered, the cost of living in Fredonia is 20% less than the national average and 50% less than the average in New York State.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

2.Oswego

Oswego campus of State University of New York
Cost of living: 49.1% less expensive than the state average and 19.7% less expensive than the national average.
Upstate New York’s lakefront community of Oswego has a rich history. Oswego, which houses a New York state institution, is a quaint and reasonably priced sanctuary for college students. Students here typically pay only 44% of the national average on housing, despite the fact that prices for groceries, healthcare, utilities, and transportation are comparable across the board.

A wide variety of inexpensive entertainment alternatives are available to Oswego locals as well. Fishing, hiking, and the thriving ice hockey team are year-round activities available in the town, which also holds the annual Oswego Harborfest, a four-day event honoring music, culture, and cuisine.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

3. Cortland

Cortland State University in New York
Cost of living: 48.4% below state average and 19% below national average.
Student-friendly in terms of cost and amenities is the historic tiny town of Cortland, which is situated in upstate New York. The numerous students at SUNY Cortland have easy access to budget-friendly dining establishments, cafes, retail centers, theaters, and even golf courses. The overall cost of living in Cortland is astonishingly 48% lower than the state average, but the greatest news is that Cortland residents can anticipate paying nearly half of the average US price for housing!

4.Buffalo

Canisius College, SUNY Buffalo, University at Buffalo, and Daemon College
Cost of living: 47.4% below state average; 18% below national average.
Buffalo, the second-largest city in New York, is not your typical college town. We had to add it, though, because it has eight institutions and a cost of living that is a staggering 47% lower than the state average.

Food, healthcare, and entertainment expenses all fall substantially below the national average, despite the fact that transportation and utility prices are a little higher than usual. Off-campus living offers students a great opportunity to save money because rent is typically only 40% of the national average. Not bad considering the large amenities of a huge metropolis.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

5.Potsdam

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Potsdam campus of State University of New York
Cost of living: 47.3% less expensive than the state average and 17.9% less expensive than the national average.
Students will be pleased to learn that the cost of living in Potsdam, New York is an astonishing 47% lower than that of the rest of the Empire State. Even housing amounts to around half of the US average.

Potsdam has all the characteristics of a traditional college town, including old buildings, lots of contemporary shops, and a wide variety of eateries that are close to the university. In fact, a lot of Potsdam’s shops and eateries provide students discounts or loyalty points, which greatly reduce the cost of amusement and food.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

6.Rochester

St. John Fisher, Rochester Institute of Technology, and the University of Rochester College
Cost of living: 47.9% below the state average and 17.5% below the national average.
One of the top college towns in the country, Rochester is home to a variety of colleges, vocational institutions, and religious institutes.

It may come as a surprise that Rochester has also been designated one of the “10 Most Unexpected Cities for High-Tech Innovation” (Techie.com) and the 7th “brainiest” metropolitan metro in the nation, given that its cost of living is approximately 18% lower than the national average and almost half that of New York (Lumosity). The standard of living is good as well. A lot of parks and lakes allow for lots of hiking, sailing, canoeing, and running in the summer months, even if winter also provides snow and popular winter activities.

7.Syracuse

Le Moyne College, Upstate Medical University, and Syracuse University
Living expenses: 17.5% 46.9% less than the national average decreases from the state average
Due to its affordable cost of living, Syracuse might be one of the finest values in the entire nation. Even though it once received 192 inches of snow in one winter, the high annual snowfall can create a difficulty.

However, the stunning natural surroundings are ideal for a variety of outdoor recreational activities all year long. In fact, Syracuse boasts more trees per square mile than any other New York City. Syracuse offers a thriving arts scene, replete with a symphony orchestra, an opera house, and numerous theaters, for those who like to spend their time indoors. Family-friendly neighborhoods are divided up into affordable housing, one of the most popular being student-friendly University Hill.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

8. Canton

The State University of New York at Canton, St. Lawrence University
Cost of living: 45.3% cheaper than the national average; 15.9% less expensive. decreases from the state average
SUNY Canton and St. Lawrence University are located in the little town of Canton, which takes pride in having two institutions there. The reduced cost of living in Canton, like its neighbor Potsdam, almost caters to its sizable student population. Students from both institutions are employed by many local businesses.

A good quality of life makes Canton’s cheaper cost of living seem even more appealing. Canton’s high-quality K–12 schools, first-rate healthcare, an abundance of housing alternatives, and lower taxes are just a few of the factors that contribute to this.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

9.Plattsburgh

Plattsburgh-based State University of New York
Cost of living: 43.7% less expensive than the state average and 14.3% less expensive than the national average.
College towns are frequently stunning, but Plattsburgh goes above and beyond! Plattsburgh, a small upstate town nestled on Lake Champlain’s shoreline, essentially caters to students with its wide selection of inexpensive restaurants, stores, and entertainment.

Speaking of entertainment, SUNY Plattsburgh residents won’t lack for things to do during the day. The Adirondacks, Montreal, Lake Placid, and Vermont’s Green Mountains are all easily accessible from Plattsburgh.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

Read;20 Most Affordable Ohio College Town Options 2023

10.Oneonta

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State University of New York at Oneonta, Hartwick College
Cost of living: 43.4% less than the state average and 14% less than the national average.
Oneonta is a little town, yet there is a lot going on there! Numerous hiking paths along the Susquehanna Trail are easily accessible to students at SUNY Oneonta and Hartwick College, and there are many bars and live music venues nearby to keep the night alive. Oneonta is also among the state’s safest communities.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

11.Binghamton

Cost of living at Binghamton University is 13.3% less than the national average and 42.7% less than the state average.
Perhaps it is not so unexpected that Binghamton has a lower cost of living than the national and state norms given that students make up almost one-third of the population. In fact, quite below. Numerous local businesses in this historic city are always eager to offer students jobs and internships. Local students on a budget nearly always have something enjoyable to do during the weekend because there are numerous festivals held throughout the four seasons.

12.Clinton

Cost of living at Hamilton College: 36.3% less expensive than the state average and 6.9% less expensive than the national average
Hamilton College is located in this picturesque community with a traditional New England atmosphere. Living expenses here are higher than in other of the nearby communities (Syracuse, for example).

Nevertheless, Clinton does have a number of conveniences that improve life in this location. For instance, compared to adjacent towns, Clinton has a significantly higher concentration of chain stores and eateries, making it more simpler and more economical to buy necessities for the home, office, or school. In comparison to the rest of the nation, students living in Clinton may anticipate paying around 5% less for necessities like food, medical care, and transportation, as well as roughly 14% less for housing.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

13.Troy

Russel Sage College, Hudson Valley Community College, and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Cost of living: 35.7% more; 6.3% less than the national average. decreases from the state average
The fact that Troy has a small, calm downtown area makes it not the most interesting place to live, but its inexpensive cost of living is still a big lure. Indeed, Troy residents who live off campus may anticipate paying just 77% of the national average for housing in addition to lower than average costs for food and healthcare. The only categories that slightly exceed the national average are transportation, utilities, and entertainment.

But there are numerous choices for each. For example, Troy residents in search of some weekend entertainment have a wide range of options that include campus-sponsored (read: free) events,

 14.Geneseo

Geneseo campus of State University of New York
Cost of living: 31.8% below the state average and 2.4% below the national average.
Geneseo is a true college town with about 3/4 of the inhabitants having some connection to the nearby university. Although housing expenses are about 55% lower than the state average, Geneseo’s leisure options are where the real bargain lies.

Students frequently use the adjacent Letchworth State Park (seen below) for hiking, jogging, kayaking, cycling, and other outdoor pursuits to enjoy the stunning natural surroundings. Outdoor activities are particularly popular here. Niagara Falls is a simple hour and a half’s drive away for more outdoor leisure, while those in need of some city amenities can head to nearby Rochester.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

15.Aurora

Wells College’s cost of living is 25.3% less than the state average and 4.1% higher than the national average.
America’s Best Kept Secret, according to Country Living, is Aurora, New York, and we have to admit that we might just agree. On the banks of Cayuga Lake in upstate New York, this charming and attractive tiny town is home to Wells College, lovely historic residences, and a downtown that seems to have been plucked straight out of a storybook.

Despite the town’s rising cost of living, Aurora is still a reasonable place to live. The cost of housing is about 20% more than the national average, while the cost of transportation is typically 7% more. Food, healthcare, utilities, and entertainment all have average expenditures that are lower than the national average.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

16.Ithaca

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The Universities of Cornell and Ithaca
Living expenses: 7.3% Over the National Average, but Below the State Average by 22.1%
Ithaca, located in one of New York’s most picturesque natural settings, is well recognized for its collegiate environment.

The best and brightest are drawn to Ithaca College and Cornell University, both of which are Ivy-ranked, and the student culture there has a tendency to be more affluent and relaxed than in other college towns. In and around town, there are more than a hundred gorges and waterfalls, making hiking and wine tasting popular pastimes. There are fifteen distinct wineries, a few distilleries, and even a mead factory on Ithaca’s wine path.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

17.Cazenovia

Cost of living at Cazenovia College: 8.4% Greater than the average for the country; 21% Lower than the average for the state
Living in one of the most lovely and reasonably priced tiny towns in the Empire State is a privilege for Cazenovia, New York residents. Cazenovia, formerly a significant transportation hub, today has a charming downtown filled with eateries, cafes, galleries, and boutiques.

Numerous prestigious horse farms are located further out, and they continue to be a significant magnet for students who come to Cazenovia for its renowned equine programs. Despite having elements that are often seen in the most opulent locations, Cazenovia is yet reasonably priced. Despite the fact that housing expenses are on average 33% more than the national average, every other major need is roughly on level with (transportation) or even lower.below (food, healthcare, utilities, entertainment) the national norm.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

18.Poughkeepsie

Marist University and Vassar College
Cost of living: 18.1% below state average; 11.3% higher than national average
Poughkeepsie’s relationship with neighboring Vassar is getting better, and so is the town’s general appeal.

The downtown area is being modernized and made more livable through a number of projects. Additionally, a recent historic preservation movement has converted a number of outdated structures into retail stores and even inexpensive housing. And Poughkeepsie is reasonably priced. In-town housing costs are roughly in line with the national average. Costs for entertainment, transportation, healthcare, and consumables are all only marginally above average.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

19.Annandale On Hudson

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Bard College’s cost of living is 15.7% below the state average and 13.7% higher than the national average.
The cost of living in this picturesque college town is still lower than the state average even though almost everything in Annandale On Hudson costs a little bit more than the national average. The renowned Fisher Center for the Performing Arts is located in the town, which is centered on its artistic community. While downtown is the place to be for fine dining and nightlife, Poets’ Walk is a beautiful location for a tranquil stroll.

20.West Point / Highland Falls

Cost of living at the United States Military Academy: 18.1% more than the national average; 11.3% less than the state average
The United States Military Academy is a proud member of both West Point and Highland Falls, two neighboring towns that are essentially one and the same. Although the cost of living in these two tiny towns is slightly higher than the national average, the quality of life is very excellent.

The settlement lies within sight of the Hudson River. Also nearby and easily accessible are Bear Mountain, Bannerman Island, and Hudson Highlands State Park. Fun fact: Billy Joel composed a song about Highland Falls because of how delightful it is said to be: “Summer, Highland Falls.”25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

21.Loudonville

Cost of living at Siena College: 18.5% Over the average for the country; 10.9% decreases from the state average
In close proximity to Albany, the state capital of New York, sits Loudonville. It’s a quaint college town with shopping, dining, live theater, concerts, and lots of outdoor recreation options in addition to a fascinating history.

There are wonderful outdoor spaces for running, hiking, canoeing, cycling, skiing, and snowboarding just outside of the city. And best of all, everything is reasonably priced! It is almost unheard of in other capital regions for the cost of living in Loudonville to be 11% lower than the New York state average but around 19% higher than the national average.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

22.New Paltz

New Paltz’s State University of New York
Cost of living: 8.6% below state average; 20.8% higher than national average
A State University of New York campus is located in the oddball town of New Paltz, which is an excellent spot for students to study for four years (or longer!).

New Paltz residents enjoy a good standard of living despite having an average cost of living that is around 19% more than the national average. A good spot for hiking, climbing, and even swimming in the lake is an 8,000-acre private land trust that is located inside the municipal boundaries. The laid-back downtown, meanwhile, is lined with eateries and cafes, book stores, and a variety of nightlife venues.

23.Saratoga Springs

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Skidmore College, SUNY Empire State College
Cost of living: 4% below the state average; 25.4% higher than the national average.
Because it is home to the oldest athletic arena in America, Saratoga Race Course, the historic town of Saratoga Springs has long been a gathering spot for society’s elite. Even though the racecourse continues to draw a sizable population, the focus of present-day Saratoga Springs is on Skidmore and SUNY Empire State College. It won’t be difficult for students to discover inexpensive amusement in the area. More than 20 golf courses, dozens of entertainment options, and a variety of performing spaces can be found in Saratoga.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

24.Stony Brook

Cost of living at Stony Brook University is 20.3% more than the state average and 49.7% higher than the national average.
Even though it is on the more costly side, quaint Stony Brook, which is more of a village than a town, is a great place to live. Given that the municipality is on Long Island, inhabitants have quick access to everything that New York City has to offer. Budget-conscious students won’t necessarily need to leave Stony Brook, though. Stony Brook has a sizable student population, which contributes to the abundance of low-cost dining establishments, cafes, stores, and a vibrant nightlife.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023

25.Orangeburg

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St. Thomas Aquinas College, Dominican College
Cost of Living: 71.2% More Expensive Than the U.S. Average; 41.8% a level above the state average
Because Orangeburg is a suburb of one of the most expensive cities in the world, New York City, this small town’s cost of living is greater than typical. Nevertheless, affordability is a relative concept, and Orangeburg provides excellent value in terms of quality of life.

For instance, inhabitants have infinite entertainment options and convenient access to things like airports because of the area’s close proximity to the Big Apple. A mall and a wide variety of restaurants in Orangeburg itself keep things interesting. Although housing is certainly the most expensive expenditure in Orangeburg, budget-conscious individuals will be pleased to learn thataverage costs of food, healthcare, and entertainment are all at just above the national average.25 Most Affordable College Towns in New York 2023