Buying a Home, Facts and Trends

Iowa and Illinois Housing Costs Are a Bargain 

by Nikki Lindholm

The Council For Community and Economic Research has released its Cost of Living Index for Quarter  3, 2022. The index compares the cost of living data for 265 urban areas throughout the country with the goal of providing an accurate measurement of living cost differences among these areas. Many cities from Iowa and Illinois were included in the report, which compares data on everything from home prices and rental costs to a breakdown of grocery items, transportation, and community goods and services.  Housing costs and overall cost of living in our area are well below the national average as noted below: 

Cost of Living Index – Housing Costs vs. Overall Cost-of-Living 

Housing Costs  Overall Cost-of-Living
Burlington, IA  57.3%  85.6%
Cedar Rapids, IA  69.3%  88.7%
Iowa City, IA  76.8%  93.0%
Quad Cities, IA & IL  68.5%  89.3%

Home price data on homes with 2,400 sq. ft. living area, lot, four bedrooms, and two baths.  

Rental data was also factored in the Cost of Living Index.

Rental Costs
Burlington, IA  53.1%
Cedar Rapids, IA  61.4%
Iowa City, IA  76.5%
Quad Cities, IA & IL  70.9%

Monthly Rent data is based on homes with 950 sq. ft. living area, two bedrooms, and 1.5 baths. Unfurnished, excluding utilities.

Housing Costs for our Region Remain Below the National Average 

Four of the markets Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors serves participated in the survey and appear below the national average for housing costs. Even with steady home appreciation in the last few years, the Burlington, Cedar Rapids, Iowa  City, and Quad Cities markets remain well below the average home price of $465,991. As shown in the chart below, the 2022 3rd Quarter Average Sales Price for our region is $242,300.  

Real Estate Activity for Our Region Including Average Sales Price 

President of Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors, Chris Beason said that Ruhl&Ruhl’s regional location plays a role in home prices historically staying below the national average. Beason stated in an interview earlier this year, “We are very fortunate in the Midwest to be lagging in some national trends. We don’t experience as much of a fluctuation as some of the more populated markets, it’s a bit more slow and steady here. We certainly have similar challenges,  but it’s just not as severe.” 

For more regional housing market information, reference our Facts & Trends quarterly issue to find demographics and trend data specific to Iowa, Illinois, and southwest Wisconsin.  

About Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors 

A family-owned company since 1862, Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors has grown to 330 sales associates, 61  employees, and eleven offices, selling more than 5,200 homes in eastern Iowa, northwest Illinois, and southwest Wisconsin. The company has residential sales offices in Bettendorf, Burlington, Cedar  Rapids, Clinton, Davenport, DeWitt, Dubuque, Iowa City, and Muscatine Iowa; and in Galena and  Moline, Illinois. For more information on Ruhl&Ruhl Realtors, visit their website at  


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