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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review

10 Cheapest U.S. Cities to Live In

By Michael DeSenne




JewishWorldReview.com | When it comes to cheap living, don't mess with Texas. Three of the ten cheapest cities in the U.S. can be found in the Lone Star State. Several Texas cities, including San Marcos, McAllen and San Antonio, didn't crack the top ten but ranked very highly for affordability nonetheless. The other seven cities on our 2014 list are scattered across the nation, from as far west as Idaho to as far east as Georgia. Some might come as a surprise.

We compiled our rankings based on the Council for Community and Economic Research's calculations of living expenses in 308 urban areas. Its Cost of Living Index measures prices for housing, groceries, utilities, transportation, health care, and miscellaneous goods and services. We screened out cities with populations below 50,000. All ten finalists, while different in many ways, share one overarching similarity: super-affordable housing options for renters and homeowners alike.

Take a look at our 2014 list of the ten cheapest places to live in America.

Cost of Living: 12.9% below U.S. average

City Population: 197,872

Median Household Income: $38,714 (U.S.: $53,046)

Median Home Value: $102,800 (U.S.: $181,400)

For one week every April, Augusta becomes one of the priciest places to be in Georgia thanks to the Masters. Golf fans can pay $1,000 a night to rent a house near the fabled course. The Masters winner pockets $1.62 million in prize money, the equivalent of how much 42 local families earn in a year. The other 51 weeks, Augusta is remarkably affordable. Housing costs fall a full 26.5% below average, and groceries go for 13.9% less, according to the Cost of Living Index. The greater metropolitan area includes the South Carolina cities of North Augusta and Aiken.

RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Augusta area.

Cost of Living: 12.9% below U.S. average

City Population: 69,148

Median Household Income: $51,192

Median Home Value: $113,200

Just an hour north of Austin, this city in central Texas is a world away from the state capital when it comes to affordability. The overall cost of living in Temple is nearly 13% below average, compared with 6.8% below average for Austin. A typical home costs $100,000 less in Temple than in Austin. Yet cheap living doesn't equate to a weak local economy. Household incomes -- the highest on this list -- are nearly as high as they are in Austin, and the unemployment rate for the Temple metropolitan area, which includes Killeen and Fort Hood, comes in below the national jobless rate.

RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Temple area.

Cost of Living: 13.2% below U.S. average

City Population: 104,552

Median Household Income: $44,390

Median Home Value: $91,300

Wichita Falls has the third-lowest home value on our list of cheap cities. You can move in for less than $100,000. If you prefer not to own, the typical apartment rents for just $577 a month, $316 less than the national average. To put that rental figure in perspective, the average apartment in Manhattan will set you back $3,783 a month. But income is solid relative to the city's reasonable across-the-board living expenses, and the unemployment rate is a low 5% (versus the U.S. rate of 6.7% as of March 2014). Sheppard Air Force Base is a top employer of Wichita Falls residents and a major contributor to the regional economy.

RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Wichita Falls area.

Cost of Living: 13.3% below U.S. average

City Population: 70,187

Median Household Income: $39,388

Median Home Value: $133,500

It's only fitting that the Cash Highway peters out before it enters Jonesboro. After all, you don't need a lot of cash to live there. The cost of everything from groceries to utilities is well below average. Health care can be a particular bargain: A dental checkup in Jonesboro runs 28% less than the national average, and a trip to the optometrist is 27% cheaper than you'd typically find elsewhere in the U.S. Even ibuprofen costs 13% less than average, according to the Cost of Living Index.

RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Jonesboro area.

Cost of Living: 13.5% below U.S. average

City Population: 65,405

Median Household Income: $24,421

Median Home Value: $48,100

That Youngstown is much closer to Pittsburgh than Columbus, Ohio's capital, underscores its roots in the steel industry. Like other Rust Belt cities, Youngstown has struggled to find its footing in a modern economy. The population is declining, home values are a staggering 73% less than the national median, and household incomes are 54% below the norm for the U.S. There's some consolation, albeit small, in the fact that grocery, health care and housing expenses are well below average, too.


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RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Youngstown area.

Cost of Living: 14.4% below U.S. average

City Population: 57,899

Median Household Income: $46,291

Median Home Value: $147,800

With the Teton Range to the east and overall housing expenses an astonishing 34.6% below average -- the lowest among all 308 urban areas covered by the Cost of Living Index -- Idaho Falls residents can afford big views on tiny budgets. Not only do homeowners reap the benefits of reasonable real estate prices, but apartment renters can enjoy the same panoramic views for just $674 a month, on average. (Nationwide, typical rent for an apartment is $893.) And, yes, potatoes are cheap in Idaho Falls -- 26% less than the national average, to be precise.

RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Idaho Falls area.

Cost of Living: 14.6% below U.S. average

City Population: 655,155

Median Household Income: $36,817

Median Home Value: $98,300

Memphis is a big city -- it's the biggest in Tennessee, and it has nearly a half-million more residents than the next-largest city on this list (Augusta, Ga.). Yet it doesn't have big-city prices. You can buy a home in Memphis for less than $100,000, a price tag that's hard to match in a comparably sized city. Proximity to the Mississippi River makes it a hub for the shipping and transportation industries. Memphis is home to three Fortune 500 companies (FedEx, International Paper and AutoZone), numerous colleges and universities, mouthwatering ribs and, of course, Graceland.

RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Memphis area.

Cost of Living: 16.2% below U.S. average

City Population: 115,562

Median Household Income: $48,248

Median Home Value: $149,900

Just south of Oklahoma City, Norman enjoys a unique combination of low unemployment, cheap living expenses and solid incomes. Housing and utilities are particularly affordable. Apartments, for example, rent for $598 a month, on average, $169 less than in the state capital. And yet the median household income is $2,500 more than it is in Oklahoma City. Norman is home to the National Weather Center, which shouldn't come as a surprise -- the city is located right in the heart of tornado country.

RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Norman area.

Cost of Living: 16.6% below U.S. average

City Population: 107,772

Median Household Income: $35,176

Median Home Value: $116,700

Pueblo, a small city in southern Colorado about 100 miles from Denver, is known more for its green chiles than the amount of green its residents earn. The median household income is 34% lower than the nation's and 40% below Colorado's. But the low incomes come with low living expenses, which makes Pueblo a perennial contender when we look for the cheapest places to live in the U.S. The median home value, for example, is less than half that of the state as a whole, and the typical rent falls 23% below the national average.



RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Pueblo area.

Cost of Living: 18.4% below U.S. average

City Population: 65,679

Median Household Income: $34,096

Median Home Value: $77,700

South Texas is home to the cheapest place to live in the U.S. Head inland from the beaches of South Padre Island and you'll soon run into Harlingen. Cheap housing is a big factor in Harlingen's affordability, but so is cheap food. Of the 308 urban areas examined by the Cost of Living Index, just three have cheaper groceries than Harlingen. But affordability doesn't necessarily equate to prosperity. One in three Harlingen residents live below the poverty line, nearly double the poverty rate for Texas and more than double the U.S. rate.

RESOURCE: Find the best, latest mortgage rates in the Harlingen area.

1. Harlingen, Texas
2. McAllen, Texas
3. Norman, Okla.
4. Memphis, Tenn.
5. Fayetteville, Ark.
6. Wichita Falls, Texas
7. Pueblo, Colo.
8. Springfield, Ill.
9. Conway, Ark.
10. Idaho Falls, Idaho

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Michael DeSenne is a Senior Editor at Kiplinger.



All contents copyright 2014 The Kiplinger Washington Editors, Inc. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC

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