Why It’s Frugal to Live in Arkansas

Posted by Mrs Money on March 17th, 2010

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This is part of a series here at Ultimate Money Blog. I’m going to be featuring fun money facts about all 50 states in America and why it is frugal to live in that particular state. Here are the states we’ve covered so far:
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona

When I think of Arkansas, I think of banjos playing. No offense to anyone that lives there, it’s just the first thing that comes to mind. It’s President Bill Clinton’s home state, Ozark Mountains and Hot Springs National Park is located there, and the Duggars live in Tontitown.  What makes Arkansas a frugal state?  Let’s find out.

field in motion
Creative Commons License photo credit: GollyGforce is slipping on learning curve…:(

Economy

In 2004, the average income per household was $35,295. Located in Bentonville, Arkansas are the Wal-mart headquarters. Many residents are employed by Wal-mart, Tyson Foods, and J.B. Hunt. All three companies are currently headquartered in the state. Arkansas is dubbed “The Natural State”, and draws many visitors in each year, making tourism a large part of Arkansas’ economy. The state’s agricultural production contains soybeans, cattle, cotton, hogs, poultry, eggs, rice, and milk.

GMC Camper
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Taxes

Arkansas has a state income tax ranging from 1.0%-7.0%.  Retirees don’t have to pay taxes on social security, so this would make Arkansas a great state to retire to!  In addition to the state tax, there are more than 300 local taxes.

One of theses days...
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Employment

Farming, education, and automobile parts manufacturing are popular careers in Arkansas.  If you’re interested in working for Wal-mart, Arkansas may peak your interest.

Autumn in Arkansas
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Housing Costs

The most inexpensive place to live in Arkansas may be in Fort Smith.  There you can pick up a house for around $91,000 (source).

Miscellaneous

If you’re a huge Wal-mart fan (or Bill Clinton, or the Duggars), you may want to relocate to Arkansas.  Full of natural beauty, farming, and lots of land, you just may find yourself at home.

Do you have any other ideas on why it’s frugal to live in Arkansas?  Would you consider moving there?

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18 Responses to “Why It’s Frugal to Live in Arkansas”


  1. Those are interesting facts.
    I can’t wait ’til you do one on Jersey. Though I can’t see anything cheap about living here…

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Random Thoughts of a Jersey Mom- I think you are the second or third person who said that about Jersey. Guess I’ll have to take a trip there to see what’s frugal! :)

    [Reply]

  2. harvestwages says:

    Arkansas is actually a good state to retire. There are no taxes for retirees.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    harvestwages- That is awesome. I love that about Arkansas!

    [Reply]

  3. My mama actually has a small cabin in Arkansas. The cabin and 3.5 acres (complete with a lovely stream running through the front yard!) cost her a grand total of $30,000. Granted, that was 10 years ago and she lives 45 minutes from anywhere, but it is also unbelievably beautiful there.

    Other things to consider: higher car insurance than in other states (dangerous, icy mountain roads and lots of accidents), horrible weather, and many areas stink of chicken poop thanks to Tyson. Outside of that, it’s fabulous! :P I actually hope to buy a small cabin there as well. Lovely, lovely state thanks to the Ozarks.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    CounsciouslyFrugal- WOW. I would LOVE to live there! That is way too cool.

    LOL with my obsession with chickens I’d probably fit right in. I wouldn’t want to have to deal with that smell all the time though!

    I would love to see the Ozarks one day!

    [Reply]

  4. Sorry I know nothing about Arkansas, but I do love those income tax rates!

    Jersey has the Beach!!!That’s THE good thing! :)

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    myfinancialobjectives- Are you another Jersey person?! They are ganging up on me with how unfrugal it is. ;) I will definitely have to include the beach as something frugal. :)

    [Reply]

    Random Thoughts of a Jersey Mom Reply:

    Don’t we have to pay to go on the beach? That’s what I heard at least… I’m not a beach person.

    [Reply]

  5. Little House says:

    I love learning about each state and its economy. I’d like to see the weather or climate included too. I think that’s a big factor (besides finding a job!) when considering moving to another state. I know I lament about the weather a lot, I’m a SoCal girl. I’m spoiled!

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Little House- It’s pretty neat. I’ve been learning a lot from this series. It’s almost like I am doing research projects! That’s a great idea- I’ll have to include the weather/climate when I do the next one. Thanks for the idea!

    [Reply]

  6. My husband’s oldest two kids moved to Arkansas a couple of years ago. It was to escape the high cost of living here in California so I think it’s got to be more frugal than a lot of states.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Bucksome- Interesting! I’ve never thought much about moving to Arkansas, but it does sound like a good place to live!

    [Reply]

    Kris Reply:

    What area do they live in and do they like it. We are from Southern California and are considering Arkansas.

    [Reply]

    Bucksome Boomer Reply:

    They are in a pretty rural area not near any larger cities. It’s close to the Missouri border half way across the state.

    I think they miss California but find it much easier to make a living.

    [Reply]

  7. A very interesting series. I never would have thought of Arkansas as a retirement mecca, but with no taxes on Social Security, that might change. I’m curious to see what you will write when you get to Pennsylvania.

    [Reply]

    Mrs Money Reply:

    Roger- Thanks! I wouldn’t think about retiring in Arkansas but apparently it’s a great place! Pennsylvania is a beautiful state. I would love to visit there again!

    [Reply]


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