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125 Best Places to Live in the U.S.

U.S. News analyzed the 125 most populous metro areas to find the best places to live. To make the top of the list, a place had to have good value, be a desirable place to live, have a strong job market and a high quality of life.

For more information on how we rank, read the Best Places to Live methodology.

Real Estate Rankings

Rankings Category

Population Size

Average Rent

Median Home Price

Commute Time

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150 matches
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150 place matches

San Juan, PR

badge #125 in Best Places to Live

Formally established in 1521, San Juan is the oldest continuously occupied European-settled metropolitan area within U.S. jurisdictio… more

  • 3.2 Overall Score
  • 2.8 Quality of Life
  • 2.5 Value

Bakersfield, CA

badge #124 in Best Places to Live

Bakersfield has long been known as a stopover for those traveling between Los Angeles and San Francisco. But people who consider putt… more

  • 5.3 Overall Score
  • 5.6 Quality of Life
  • 5.5 Value

Stockton, CA

badge #123 in Best Places to Live

Home to more than 300,000 residents, Stockton, California, has a diverse community and access to everything from Japanese grocery sto… more

  • 5.4 Overall Score
  • 5.6 Quality of Life
  • 4.7 Value

Shreveport, LA

badge #122 in Best Places to Live

The identity of Shreveport, Louisiana, unlike New Orleans, is not rooted in Cajun-Creole traditions, but in a blended Southern cultur… more

  • 5.4 Overall Score
  • 5.2 Quality of Life
  • 6.4 Value

Mobile, AL

badge #121 in Best Places to Live

This laid-back waterfront metropolitan area often feels like a mini New Orleans, complete with a Mardi Gras tradition, historic neigh… more

  • 5.5 Overall Score
  • 4.7 Quality of Life
  • 6.3 Value

Modesto, CA

badge #120 in Best Places to Live

Modesto, California, attracts those looking for the balance created by a culturally rich city center that's surrounded by quiet resid… more

  • 5.5 Overall Score
  • 5.9 Quality of Life
  • 4.8 Value

Fresno, CA

badge #119 in Best Places to Live

Fresno started out as a small stop along the Central Pacific Railroad, but it has blossomed into a magnetic metropolis that draws agr… more

  • 5.5 Overall Score
  • 6.2 Quality of Life
  • 4.9 Value

Memphis, TN

badge #118 in Best Places to Live

Set in the Mississippi Delta, Memphis is a metro area where the energy of urban living melds with the slow rhythms of the rural South… more

  • 5.6 Overall Score
  • 4.6 Quality of Life
  • 6.3 Value

Salinas, CA

badge #117 in Best Places to Live

Salinas, California, promotes itself as the "Salad Bowl of the World" as tribute to the area's huge farming business that produces le… more

  • 5.6 Overall Score
  • 6.8 Quality of Life
  • 3.8 Value

Brownsville, TX

badge #116 in Best Places to Live

Located at the southernmost tip of Texas, the Brownsville metro area marks the point where Texas meets both Mexico and the Gulf of Me… more

  • 5.7 Overall Score
  • 7.6 Quality of Life
  • 5.4 Value
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