Looking for the best cities to raise a family in the US? Look no further than our carefully curated list, based on factors like education, healthcare and quality of life.
Deciding where to raise your family can be tough, and when it comes time to start your family, your priorities may change. For example, when you’re single, you might want to live downtown, close to nightlife and the hustle and bustle of city life. But when you have kids, you start to prioritize other things like safety, outdoor spaces and cost of living.
We’ll help you narrow down your choices by showing you the 10 best cities to raise a family. The top 10 are listed in order, with each city scored for quality of life, healthcare, safety, leisure, finances, education and home atmosphere. One hundred and fifty-two cities were surveyed by Scholaroo, scoring points in subcategories for each group. Further details can be found below.
So whether you’re thinking of moving now or are just preparing for your future, we’ll tell you what 10 the best cities to raise a family in the US are.
The Best Cities to Raise a Family: Scoring Process
To find the top ten best cities to raise a family, one hundred and fifty-two cities were surveyed and scored on the following categories: quality of life, healthcare, safety, leisure, finances, education and home atmosphere. Within each category were different metrics, each of which was scored on a 100-point scale with different weights:
- Safety (20 points) — Regular weight was given to the number of police officers and firefighters, as well as property crimes. Half weight was given to the number of school shootings, violent crimes and sex offenders, as well as watch groups.
- Healthcare (14 points) — Regular weight was given to the number of hospitals and pediatricians. Half weight was given to the number of uninsured residents and inpatient beds.
- Finances (16 points) — Regular weight was given to the median home value, homeownership rate and median household income. Half weight was given to the cost of private education, rent cost and the cost of a nanny. The cost of living was given double weight.
- Education (18 points) — Regular weight was given to the number of public schools and classroom teachers, high school graduation rate, number of students/teachers ratio and educational expenditure.
- Leisure Activities (13 points) — Regular weight was given to the number of recreational areas. Half weight was given to the number of restaurants, museums and movie theaters.
- Quality of life (11 points) — Regular weight was given to noise pollution, and air and water quality.
- Home atmosphere (8 points) — Regular weight was given to rates of alcoholism. Half weight was given to divorce and marriage duration.
Read on to find out what the 10 best cities to raise a family in the US are.
1. Warwick, RI
Top of the list of best cities to raise a family is Warwick, in the smallest state of Rhode Island. As well as ranking first overall, it also ranked first place for safety, as it has the lowest number of violent crimes. Warwick also scored well for a home atmosphere and finances. The latter encompasses private education costs for the elementary level to high school, homeownership rate and housing value, as well as the cost of living and household income.
12 Best Picture Books About the Environment
Wondering how to involve your kids in your quest for a sustainable lifestyle? Start the conversation with the best picture…
2. Charleston, WV
Next on the list is Charleston, West Virginia, which scored well in the healthcare category, as it has the second-highest number of hospitals. It also ranked well for safety; this includes the number of firefighters and police officers, as well as the number of school shootings, property crimes, watch groups and violent crimes. Check out the 10 best east coast national parks, which include New River Gorge National Park in West Virginia.
3. Fort Lauderdale, FL
In third place on the list of best cities to raise a family is Fort Lauderdale, Florida, which got first place in the education category, as it has the highest number of public schools. It also scored well in terms of leisure; this includes the number of museums, movie theaters, restaurants and recreational areas, which included sports courts, beaches and playgrounds. Read more about 6 secret east coast vacation spots, which include two in Florida.
4. Yonkers, NY
Yonkers in New York scored well for safety and healthcare. The latter includes the number of pediatricians, hospitals, inpatient beds and uninsured residents. It also scored well in the quality of life category, which includes air and water quality levels, as well as noise pollution. New York state has a lot to offer, so why not visit the 7 best state parks in New York for skiing, boating or picnics?
5. Burlington, VT
Halfway through the list of best cities to raise a family is Burlington, Vermont, which scored first place for healthcare. Thisis great news for residents who have access to a high number of hospital beds and hospitals, as well as doctors for children. It also means that most residents are insured. According to 2009 research, insured patients receive better quality care and higher survival rates than their uninsured counterparts. Check out the best hiking on the east coast, which includes a trail in Vermont.
6. Chicago, IL
The windy city ranks at number six of the best cities to raise a family in the US. It scored well in the healthcare category and had the third-highest number of hospitals. Chicago also did well in the education group, this includes high-school graduation rates, the number of students per teacher and how much the city invests in education per student. If you love outdoor activities, try the best hiking near Chicago: 9 top trails.
7. Charleston, SC
The next city on the list of best cities to raise a family is Charleston, South Carolina which scored well in the healthcare, safety and education groups. But scored lowest in the home atmosphere category, which covers divorce rates, marriage length and alcoholism.
12 Cool Volunteer Opportunities for Kids
Volunteering has many benefits and it’s never too early to get started. We’ll show you some of the best volunteer…
8. Virginia Beach, VA
Virginia Beach, on the coast of Virginia scored well in the safety category and it is the city with the third lowest violent crime rate. It also scored well in the finances category — this interestingly includes the cost of a nanny, which may be important to many families. If you’re in need of a break try one of the 10 best wellness retreats in the US, which includes one in Virginia.
9. Casper, WY
A great city for leisure activities, Casper, Wyoming scored second place on the list of best places to raise a family, for its number of recreational areas, such as walking tracks, dog parks, skate parks, swimming pools, nature trails and basketball hoops, in the leisure category — these areas will appeal to all members of the family. Casper scored lowest for home atmosphere. Interestingly, Wyoming ranks well in the 10 best states for homesteading, and ithas a low population and lots of land.
10. Pittsburgh, PA
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is located on the confluence of three rivers. So, it scored well in the leisure category as there are multiple outdoor activities to do there, including trails, river walks and cycle tracks. However, it scored lowest in the quality of life group, meaning that levels of pollution levels are not the lowest.
- 10 Tips on How To Make Camping as a Family a Success
- The 9 Best Trail Games for Family Hikes
- Eco-Friendly Toys for Kids as Sustainable Gift Ideas
Important Information regarding Health-related Topics.
** Links to retailers marked with ** or underlined orange are partially partner links: If you buy here, you actively support Utopia.org, because we will receive a small part of the sales proceeds. More info.
Do you like this post?
Thank you very much for voting!
Tags: Guide Healthy Living Kids Listicles
The 10 Best Cities to Raise a Family in the US (2023)? ›
A new report has named Copenhagen the world's best city for making money and having work-life ... [+] Coming in at the top of the list as the best city in 2023 for work-life balance and salary was Copenhagen.What is the best city to live in 2023? ›
A new report has named Copenhagen the world's best city for making money and having work-life ... [+] Coming in at the top of the list as the best city in 2023 for work-life balance and salary was Copenhagen.Where is the #1 place to raise a family in America? ›
Massachusetts topped the list for the best state to raise a family. The New England state earned a total score of 66.14. It ranked second in both education & child care and affordability. The state is home to some of the country's best schools, including Harvard and MIT.Which city is best to raise a family? ›
|Rank||City, State||Distinguishing Factor|
|1||Brownsville, Texas||Lower cost of living|
|2||Ann Arbor, Michigan||Highly ranked public school districts|
|3||Naples, Florida||Low crime|
|4||Boise, Idaho||Family-friendly amenities|
The HomeSnacks list of Best States to Raise a Family in America for 2022 is topped by Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire, Nebraska, and Iowa. It was Vermont's health and safety index and Maine's clean air and water, schools, and safety that gained each one its top spot.Where is everyone moving to in 2023? ›
Based on migration data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Americans are moving to Austin, Texas; Raleigh, North Carolina; Orlando, Florida; Dallas, Texas; and Phoenix, Arizona. The most moved-to cities are based on percentage increases in population since 2010.What is the safest city in the U.S. 2023? ›
Frisco, Texas, part of the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex has been ranked the number 1 safest city to live in the U.S. It boasts the fourth-lowest violent crime rate and the sixth-lowest property crime rate.
Census data shows one-child families are the fastest growing family unit in the United States. Never before have there been so many choices in family type or size.What is the number 1 place to live in us? ›
Atlanta, Georgia. Atlanta, Georgia is the best place to live in the U.S. in 2022 because of its booming jobs market and eye on equality.What is the ideal family size in America? ›
Trends in ideal family size
Two children is always the most popular choice, followed by three children, four or more children, and one child or no children. Chi-square tests, however, indicate a significant difference in responses over time.
What is the most expensive state to raise a family? ›
Hawaii. Hawaii is truly a paradise, but it is also the most expensive state in America to live in. The cost of living in Hawaii overall is 86% higher than the national average, and the cost of housing in Hawaii is a jaw-dropping 207% above the national average.What state has the most things for kids to do? ›
Florida is among the best state to visit in the United States with kids as there are lots of fun things to do, especially Orlando With Kids. The attractions range from museums to theme parks to beaches to natural parks. There are many fun things to do with kids and memories to make that your kids will surely remember.Where should I move us? ›
- South Atlantic: Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Washington, D.C.
- Pacific West: Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington.
- Mountain West: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming.
- Laredo, Texas.
- Portland, Maine.
- Warwick, Rhode Island.
- Yonkers, New York.
- Gilbert, Arizona.
- Burlington, Vermont.
- Raleigh, North Carolina.
- Lewiston, Maine.
|▲ Overall Rank||State||Economy|
What is the number 1 safest city in the world? Copenhagen is considered to be the safest place according to the index.What is the fastest growing city 2023? ›
|Sr. No.||City||Current Population (2023)|
|#1||Georgetown City (Texas)||73,110|
|#3||Queen Creek Town (Arizona)||69,467|
|#4||Buckeye City (Arizona)||81,159|
This seasoned travel expert has been to all 50 states and chose Massachusetts as the best state to live in based on data and comparative experiences! According to “World Geo,” Massachusetts is the best state to live in going into 2023.Which US city has the lowest crime rate? ›
- Population: 124,339.
- Violent crime rate: 1.
- Property crime rate: 7.
- Median household income: $50,071.
- Median home price: $211,692.
Maine has the lowest crime rate in America, with around 1.3 crimes per 1000 people. Like Vermont, the majority of crime is related to property theft, and there are very few instances of violent crimes such as mugging, assault, or murder.
What is the safest major city in America? ›
- Tampa, Florida.
- Mesa, Arizona.
- Austin, Texas.
- San Jose, California.
- El Paso, Texas.
- San Diego, California.
- Honolulu, Hawaii.
- Virginia Beach, Virginia (The safest big city in America)
- Austin, Texas. Current population (city): 961,855. ...
- Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina. Current population (city): 467,665 / 174,762. ...
- Orlando, Florida. Current population (city): 307,573. ...
- Charleston-North Charleston, South Carolina. ...
- Houston, Texas. ...
- Sarasota-Bradenton, Florida. ...
- San Antonio, Texas. ...
- Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas.
Florida is the fastest-growing state in America for the first time since 1957, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The population in the southeastern state, which is known for its warm weather and sandy beaches, now tops 22 million.What is the slowest growing city in America? ›
Tulsa tops the slow list—what's interesting about that is that nearby Oklahoma City is one of the nation's fastest-growing cities in terms of population. Likewise, Arlington, Texas, has the fourth-slowest job growth; compare this to nearby Fort Worth, with the third-best job growth.What city has the highest quality of life? ›
Monocle's Quality of Life Survey
The 2022 Monocle Survey determined the world's most livable city was Copenhagen, followed by Zurich, Lisbon and Helsinki.
New York is the most populated city in the United States. Three cities in California made the top 10 populated cities: Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Jose. Texas made the list with three cities: Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio. Chicago, Phoenix, and Philadelphia also ranked among the 10 most populated U.S. cities.What are the best U.S. cities for life? ›
- Round Rock, TX. Plenty of people had their sights set on Austin, Texas, in 2022 — in fact, it was the second-fastest-growing city in America. ...
- Sarasota, FL. ...
- Tacoma, WA. ...
- Bridgeport, CT. ...
- Raleigh, NC. ...
- Arlington, TX. ...
- Fort Myers, FL. ...
- Oakland, CA.
Grow your family to at least four children! According to a study out of Australia's Edith Cowan University, parents with the most life satisfaction (which means those who are the happiest) are those that have four or more children.What is the ideal number of kids? ›
Three or more children = wrong
Despite the growing trends mentioned above, two children still seems to the ideal number. An actual study revealed one to two children is the ideal number for “happiness”, but with two you don't have to deal with the aforementioned only child issues.
Since having five or more kids is generally the cutoff point for being considered a “large” family, here are all the ways your parenting will change once you hit that pivotal plus-five milestone.
What is the most cost friendly state to live? ›
1. Mississippi. Coming in as the cheapest state to live in in the United States is Mississippi with a cost of living index score of 83.3. It also has the lowest average housing costs in the nation at 33.7% below the national average.What is the best state to live in for money? ›
Dutch children are remarkably happy in this quirky little country, scoring themselves as the happiest children in rich industrialised nations in numerous child well-being studies.Which state is safest for kids? ›
Massachusetts once again topped the chart, helped by a second-place score in Education and Child Care, and a high Health and Safety score.Which US state has least children? ›
Birth Rate by State 2023.
|Fertility Rate (White)||65|
|Fertility Rate (Black)||94|
The best cities in the U.S. to start over.
|Rank||City||Starting over score|
|1||St. Louis, MO||71.4|
- 8 — Washington.
- 7 — District of Columbia.
- 6 — Georgia.
- 5 — Maryland.
- 4 — New Jersey.
- 3 — New York.
- 2 — Illinois.
- 1 — California.
Switzerland. Switzerland looks to be the best country to live in 2023. It was the highest-ranking country on the latest HDI report, with a score of 0.962. Switzerland has remained at the top spot since 2015 and has seen an annual average growth of 0.19%.What is the best state to move to 2023? ›
Where is the most affordable place to live in 2023? ›
Mississippi. Coming in as the cheapest state to live in in the United States is Mississippi with a cost of living index score of 83.3. It also has the lowest average housing costs in the nation at 33.7% below the national average.What is the safest state to live in 2023? ›
Chesterbrook, Pennsylvania, is the No. 1 best place to live in America for the fourth year in a row. The Philadelphia suburb is known for its high-ranking education system. The local Tredyffrin-Easttown School District placed No.Which state are most moving to? ›
The states that attracted the most new residents in 2022 are Florida, Texas, North Carolina and South Carolina, followed by other states in the South and West.Which U.S. city has the lowest cost of living? ›
Fort Wayne, Indiana, was named the city with the lowest cost of living for 2022.What major city has the lowest cost of living? ›
- Salt Lake City, Utah. Cost of living: 6% below U.S. average Median home price: $320,281. ...
- South Bend, Indiana. Cost of living: 8% below U.S. average Median home price: $314,035. ...
- Richmond, Virginia. ...
- Boise, Idaho. ...
- Birmingham, Alabama. ...
- Lawton, Oklahoma. ...
- Montgomery, Alabama. ...
- Des Moines, Iowa.
The first reason why now is a good time to buy a home is because April 2023 begins with conventional mortgage rates on a win streak. Interest rates are down through three consecutive weeks, according to Freddie Mac. 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage rates now average 6.32 percent nationwide.What is the number 1 fastest growing city in America? ›
- > Key Findings:
- > Fastest-Growing Cities:
- > 1. Cape Coral – Fort Myers, Florida.
- > 2. North Port, Florida.
- > 3. Winter Haven, Florida.
- > 4. New Braunfels, Texas.
- > 5. Port St. Lucie, Florida.
- > 6. Daytona Beach, Florida.
1 fastest-growing city: San Francisco.