Many may wonder, what exactly makes a place an ideal hometown? Perhaps affordability, an area with a stellar school system, and access to shopping—depending on priorities, any of these might be deciding factors in choosing the best place to live in America.
To help make a choice, Stacker compiled a list of the best places to live in every state using Niche’s 2021 rankings. Niche ranks places to live based on an array of factors, including the cost of living, educational level of residents, housing, and public schools. While this data is the most current available, some housing statistics Niche uses to calculate its rankings—such as median home values and housing costs—are not entirely reflective of the current housing market. Since these numbers are subject to frequent changes and housing represents 10% of Niche’s total ranking, those statistics are omitted from forthcoming data points and do not detract from Niche’s overall assessment of the best places to live. Check out the details of Niche’s methodology.
The list features college towns, suburbs, and cities. Many are appealing for varied reasons—from their safe environments and commitment to education to their proximity to the cultural attractions of an urban area and nearby wilderness for hiking and skiing. Some grew popular when a major company moved in, boosting local job opportunities. Some are especially quaint and historical, while others have been experiencing tech booms.
Whether you are looking to relocate, just daydreaming about a change of scenery, or curious to see if your hometown is mentioned, take a look at the American towns and cities that have earned their spot—and read why—on our list of the top 25 places to live in the U.S.