Today MONEY reveals the 2017 Best Places to Live in America, its annual ranking of the towns and cities where affordability meets quality of life. For this year’s list MONEY evaluated 2,400 places on eight categories: cost of living, economy, education, housing, crime, convenience, cultural and recreational amenities, and an overall sense of pleasantness. For the first time MONEY teamed up with realtor.com
® to leverage its rich data and understanding of housing markets. Fishers, Indiana, a suburb of Indianapolis, tops this year's list at number one followed by Allen, Texas and Monterey Park, California.
See the full list of the 100 Best Places to Live in America: http://ti.me/2fuzihB
In his editor's letter, MONEY editor Adam Auriemma writes, "Where you choose to live is an important decision, one that influences your life in every way. So we had to make sure to consider as many factors as possible. This year, our methodology is as robust as ever. We’ve gathered 170,000 data points about 2,400 places…. Our final list…represents the best of America's towns and cities: places that offer economic opportunity, a sense of community, and access to amenities that make life more enjoyable."
This year marks MONEY’s 30th Best Places to Live list. Over the past 30 years the basic elements that make a great place to live have rarely changed - good schools, a good economy and good neighbors. When MONEY launched its inaugural Best Places to Live list in 1987 crime rates were rising nationally placing an emphasis on safety. During the financial crisis in 2007 good job security was a big priority. Today, rising demand for urban living has pushed up prices for homes in cities, driving more people to suburbs. That’s why MONEY chose to look at places with a population between 10,000 and 100,000 this year.
MONEY's 2017 Top 10 Best Places to Live:
1. Fishers, Indiana
2. Allen, Texas
3. Monterey Park, California
4. Franklin, Tennessee
5. Olive Branch, Mississippi
6. Dickinson, North Dakota
7. Lone Tree, Colorado
8. North Arlington, New Jersey
9. Schaumburg, Illinois
10. Bozeman, Montana
“The MONEY Best Places to Live annual ranking is the nation’s most iconic housing report and showcases what makes communities so special,” said Nate Johnson, chief marketing officer of realtor.com®. “Choosing where to live is such a personal decision that is impacted by so many different factors. We understand this process and recognize the important role realtor.com® plays in providing homebuyers with the most comprehensive listings and key market insights that allow them to make informed decisions.”
More on MONEY’s Best Place to Live List:
Most appearances in the top 5 Best Places to Live in the last 30 years: Louisville, Colorado (6x), San Francisco, California (6x), Rochester, Minnesota (5x) and Seattle, Washington (4x).
1987 Best Place to Live: Nashua, New Hampshire
To create MONEY’S Best Places to Live ranking, we looked only at places with populations between 10,000 and 100,000. We eliminated any place that had more than double the national crime risk, less than 85% of its state’s median household income, or a lack of ethnic diversity. This gave us 2,400 places.
We then collected about 170,000 different data points to narrow the list. Our partners at realtor.com
® contributed data on housing market costs and growth. We also considered data on each place’s economic health, cost of living, public education, crime, ease of living, and amenities, all provided by research partner Witlytic. We put the greatest weight on economic health, cost of living factors, and public school performance.
Finally, reporters researched each spot, interviewing residents, checking out neighborhoods, and searching for the kinds of intangible factors that aren’t revealed by statistics. To ensure a geographically diverse set, we limited the list to no more than four places per state and two per county. In the top 15, we allowed only one place per state.
Rankings derived from more than 70 separate types of data. For full methodology and sources, go to money.com/BPLmethodology
The October issue of MONEY goes on sale Friday, September 22
MONEY PR HOTLINE: (212) 522-4800
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