Are you looking for the most affordable neighborhoods in Pierce County in 2023? The most affordable neighborhoods in Pierce County right now (aside from the most affordable neighborhoods in Tacoma) are Ashford/Elbe, Carbonado, Wilkeson, Lakebay, and South Prairie. The neighborhoods in Pierce County that are the most affordable are also some of the most rural. In this post we will dig into the median home price numbers for all of these areas.

Pierce County Real Estate Market 2023

graham wa

At, I have been running neighborhood stats since 2015 to determine the median home price in Tacoma and cities and neighborhoods around Pierce County. It can take some work to get accurate information comparing neighborhoods, but it’s worth it! So, is living in Tacoma and Pierce County still affordable in 2023? The answer is a mix.

Tacoma is still more affordable than many cities on the west coast, that’s why people are flocking here from out of town. The downside is that housing demand has skyrocketed over the past seven years, and we can’t keep up! Home prices in Pierce County rose by 15% in 2020 and 17% in 2021, making it a seller’s market with very limited inventory. This has caused some real worries about affordability. As we enter 2023 things are shifting.

Home prices in Pierce County were over $500,000 as we entered 2022, but as we enter 2023 they are at $485,000. The reason for this is the increase in interest rates- they doubled in 2022. That has made the payment on people’s home loans much higher than before, impacting affordability for buyers. It does appear that rates are starting to ease up and flatted out which will make payments more manageable for buyers.

Elbe / Ashford

Church in elbe

The old church in Elbe WA

Median Sales Price: $390,000

The area around Alder Lake, Elbe, and Ashford is the most rural and remote part of Pierce County. The median home price in Elbe Ashford is now $390,000. The median price increased about 14% from 2022 to 2023. Elbe and Ashford are the last stops on the road to Mt. Rainier National Park. It takes about an hour to drive from Elbe to Downtown Tacoma, so while there are people who live there full time and commute in, it’s very challenging. This is one of the reasons why homes in Elbe are still one of the few places in Pierce County that you can find homes under $400,000. That said, homes in this area are selling twice as fast as they did the year before. The number of days on the market dropped from 28 days in 2022 to 15 days in 2023.


Median Sales Price: $404,975

A tiny town home to about 600 people, this is the first time Carbonado has shown up on the “most affordable” list. Prices in Carbonado were down slightly over last year, but there were also less than a dozen homes that sold. That’s a pretty tiny slice of data! Like Espe and Ashford, Carbonado is a small town on the road to Mt Rainier, but you get to Carbonado through Wilkeson and South Prairie.


Median Sales Price: $411,250

A tiny historic town on the road to Mt. Rainier, Wilkeson is home to fewer than 5oo people. The median home price in Wilkeson was up 8% from 2022 to 2023. Homes in Wilkeson spend about 19 days on the market before they have an accepted offer from a buyer.


Median Sales Price: $415,000

Lakebay is on the Key Peninsula between Vaughn and Longbranch. Driving from Lakebay to Tacoma takes about 45 minutes. Median home prices in Lakebay went up about 3% from 2022 to 2023. Homes in Lakebay spend about 25 days on the market before they go pending.

South Prairie

Median Sales Price: $416,000

South Prairie is another tiny town on the road to Mt Rainier that didn’t have a ton of sales. That said, their prices did go up about 2% from 2022 to 2023. Homes in South Prairie take about 19 days on the market before they go pending.

What other affordable neighborhoods are in Pierce County?

This year many of the most affordable neighborhoods in Pierce County are so small we haven’t even made neighborhood pages for them! That said, there are more neighborhoods in Pierce County with median home prices under $500,000. Other affordable neighborhoods in Pierce County are:

Parkland – $429,000

Anderson Island – $452,000

Midland – $468,750

Spanaway – $490,000

Frederickson– $492,500

What are the most affordable places to live in Tacoma?

The most affordable neighborhoods in Tacoma in 2023 are Downtown Tacoma, Hillside/UWT, McKinley Hill, the Lincoln District, & South Tacoma. Median home prices in these Tacoma neighborhoods run from about $318,000-$420,000. For context, the median home price for a home in Tacoma is $472,000.  That’s about 40% less than the median home price in King County, $840,000. To learn more check out our blog post, ‘The Most Affordable Neighborhoods in Tacoma 2023.”


Thinking about buyng a house in Pierce County this year? Here is some information as you’re doing your research:

Moving to Pierce County? Here’s what you need to know! –

The Best Neighborhoods I’ve Lived In (In Pierce County, WA) – Windermere Blog

Pierce County Neighborhood Videos – Youtube Playlist

How much does it cost to buy a house in Tacoma? –

How to Choose the Best Tacoma Real Estate Agent

In addition to the resources above this website also has this clickable neighborhood map and neighborhood guide that includes median home price by neighborhood if you’d like to explore Tacoma and Pierce County!
Here is a link to the Podcast if you’d like to learn more about Tacoma culture! Marguerite Martin, Founder of is a real estate agent in Tacoma, WA . As a real estate “Matchmaker,” she specializes in connecting real estate clients to the perfect agent in Tacoma and across the country. Learn more at Meet Your Guide.
Pierce County real estate agent Marguerite Martin smiling with her arms crossed. Text over photo reads: Thinking of moving to Pierce County? We have guides to over 50 neighborhoods in Tacoma and across Pierce County. Check out home prices, videos, pictures, and what the neighbors are saying. Click here to check out the neighborhood guide.