Looking for the perfect place to live? You may have to go south. According to the U.S. News & World
Report, Austin, Texas, is the best place to live in the United States.
The magazine just released its list of best places to live in America. It evaluated the country’s 125 most populous metropolitan areas around the nation. Included in the decision-making were factors like affordability, job prospects, and quality of life. Data such as crime rates, availability of health care, and median household income were used in conjunction with results from polls. For the third year in a row, Austin, Texas, was crowned the best place to live in the U.S. Although the number of people moving to Austin has decreased, it scored high in desirability, and its net migration score was still higher than that of most cities.
Colorado cities took the next two spots with Denver and Colorado Springs ranking second and third, respectively. Fayetteville, Arkansas, and Des Moines, Iowa, rounded out the top five, proving that coastal cities are no longer dominating.
“Our Northeastern cities, which are epicenters of higher education and economic development, are not growing nearly as much as places in Florida, California, and Texas,” noted Devon Thorsby, real estate editor for U.S. News & World Report. “Plus, they are expensive to live in. Topranked places have the characteristics people are looking for, including steady job growth, affordability and a high quality of life.”
While the majority of the top 25 best places to live are located in the middle of the country, the Pacific Northwest is still popular thanks to its tech boom. San Francisco — which moved up from No. 20 to No. 7 — Portland, Oregon, and Seattle are all in the top 10. Incredibly, only one Northeast city cracked the top 20.
Washington, D.C., dropped to No. 19 after ranking No. 8 last year due to a decrease in housing affordability and net migration. It still made it to the top 20, though, so it should be relieved. Portland, Maine, was the next closest city in the Northeast, coming in at the 23rd spot, while the Big Apple found itself way down the list, at a dismal spot number 90.
Florida is also a state of note this year as Sarasota debuted at No. 18, with the highest net migration score and increases in desirability, affordability, quality of life, and job growth. Tampa also boasted housing affordability, net migration, quality of life, and job market scores that helped it climb to No. 56 from No. 75.
In terms of the worst places to live, San Juan, Puerto Rico – which is still recovering from 2017’s devastating Hurricane Maria – ranked last again while several California cities, including Bakersfield, Stockton and Modesto, also filled out the bottom of the list. Not surprisingly, New York had the worst commute with Washington, D.C., a close second. Nothing to write home about.
Here are the top 20 cities in the U.S.:
1. Austin, Texas
2. Denver, Colorado
3. Colorado Springs, Colorado 4. Fayetteville, Arkansas
5. Des Moines, Iowa
6. Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota 7. San Francisco, California 8. Portland, Oregon
9. Seattle, Washington
10. Raleigh & Durham,
11. Huntsville, Alabama
12. Madison, Wisconsin
13. Grand Rapids, Michigan
14. San Jose, California
15. Nashville, Tennessee
16. Asheville, North Carolina 17. Boise, Idaho
18. Sarasota, Florida
19. Washington, D.C.
20. Charlotte, North Carolina