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The Big 5: The Best Cities to Live In

The question of where the best place to live is located has always been an elusive one. What factors should be considered when passing judgement on a city, and what weight should those factors be given are questions that don’t have any hard and fast answers, but nevertheless are ones worth asking when considering specific regions in the U.S.

WalletHub recently tried its hand at ranking the best cities to live for 2017 by considering housing costs, homeownership rates, income growth, percentage of the population below the poverty line, percent of the population insured, percent of the population with a high school diploma, workweek, restaurants and coffee shops per capita, walk and bike score, and crime rate. It ranked each city in each of these individual categories, and then ranked a master composite of all the categories to come up with a final list.

The top five cities overall, based on affordability, economy, safety, education and health, and quality of life are as follows. Number one, with a total score of 63.41, was Virginia Beach, Virginia. This locale also ranked in the top slot for the highest homeownership rate, as well as the lowest percent of the population living below the poverty line. Virginia Beach also has one of the highest percentage of educated adults, second only to Seattle, but conversely also had the second highest average of weekly work hours. This coastal city also boasted the lowest crime rate in the country.

Second overall best big city to live in was Seattle, Washington, with a score of 62.58. Seattle has the second highest income growth behind Washington, DC, and is the fifth highest percentage of insured in the country.

Number three was Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with a score of 60.96. The city was fourth in percentage of population with a high school diploma, but surprisingly didn’t make the top five in any other individual category although its average was high enough to warrant the number three spot.

Number four was San Diego, California, and number five was Colorado Springs, Colorado, although San Diego did not make any top five lists, whereas Colorado Springs showed up in the highest percentage of people with a high school diploma, and fewest people living below the poverty line.

You can see the full results here.

About Author: Joey Pizzolato

Joey Pizzolato is the Online Editor of DS News and MReport. He is a graduate of Spalding University, where he holds a holds an MFA in Writing as well as DePaul University, where he received a B.A. in English. His fiction and nonfiction have been published in a variety of print and online journals and magazines. To contact Pizzolato, email joseph.pizzolato@thefivestar.com.

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