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Lowest rents
Rank Metro area Median rent (for a 2-bedroom housing unit) Per-capita income
1 Johnstown, PA $561 $29,022
2 Dothan, AL $570 $31,277
3 Morristown, TN $576 $25,757
4 Wheeling, WV $578 $30,137
5 Fort Smith, AR $580 $29,197
6 Kingsport, TN $585 $29,730
7 Las Cruces, NM $586 $25,106
8 Weirton, WV $590 $28,335
9 Joplin, MO $593 $27,243
10 Anniston, AL $594 $30,907
11 Jonesboro, AR $594 $26,846
12 Bismarck, ND $595 $35,714
13 Jefferson City, MO $596 $31,202
14 Dubuque, IA $600 $33,505
15 Decatur, AL $600 $32,295
16 Florence, SC $604 $30,690
17 Elizabethtown, KY $606 $32,188
18 Gadsden, AL $608 $28,349
19 Johnson City, TN $608 $28,327
20 St. Joseph, MO $608 $28,552
21 Parkersburg, WV $610 $29,254
22 Cumberland, MD $612 $27,103
23 Sumter, SC $612 $27,576
24 Florence, AL $614 $28,209
25 Pocatello, ID $616 $27,046
Source: Rent data from U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development 50th Percentile Rent Estimates 2009.
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The factors that matter most to me are:
 Affordable wages  Few foreclosures
 Educated workers  Low housing costs
 Low crime  High local incomes
 A growing economy  Population growth
 Growing small business population

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This year we partnered with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation to find the 50 most business-friendly communities in America.

With help from Robert Fairlie, an economist and leading scholar of entrepreneurship at the University of California, Santa Cruz, we developed a methodology and sifted through such data on factors such as per capita income, hourly wages, workforce quality, crime rates, taxes and foreclosures. More

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Data partners

This package was produced in partnership with the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.

Foreclosure data provided by RealtyTrac.

Housing price-to-income data provided by Moody's Economy.com.