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Best States to live in 2020: Top 10 Most Comfortable States. Overall Report with Facts And Statistics

Best States to live in 2020: Top 10 Most Comfortable States. Overall Report with Facts And Statistics

Debra Broxton 
August 17, 2020

To learn the real data on the safety and quality of life in the state where you live, this article is worth noticing. The decision to live anywhere is personal and cannot be affected externally; however, as things change, families with children or elderly relatives may seek a better life quality and a safer environment. The figures are somewhat disappointing, though.

Our team has researched to figure out the actual information, keeping in mind various factors. As the figures date back in 2019, they include the latest census data and provide up-to-date info.

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Top 50 States’ Comparison

Take a look at the comprehensive table of the best statistics our team gathered for this guide. Below, find 50 best states in terms of quality of life, categorized by different key metrics. Get acquainted with the factors and keep them in mind when choosing a place to live or move somewhere in the USA.

Population density Median income Median Home value Violent crime Jobless rate Bachelors degree Health outcomes Poverty rate Air incidents Poor roads
VirginiaVirginia 8,571,946 $71,535 $266,300 376 2,6% 37,6% 26 10,8% 35 2,7%
MassachusettsMassachusetts 6,939,373 $77,385 $410,200 756 2,9% 42,1% 7 10,7% 42 15,4%
New HampshireNew Hampshire 1,363,852 $73,381 $281,600 317 2,6% 36,0% 9 7,8% 10 4,8%
UtahUtah 3,221,610 $68,358 $348,000 357 2,5% 32,5% 10 10,9% 0 2,4%
New JerseyNew Jersey 8,922,547 $80,088 $330,000 342 3,2% 38,1% 18 10,5% 38 16,8%
ConnecticutConnecticut 3,567,871 $74,168 $245,000 368 3,6% 38,4% 5 9,8% 22 6,2%
ColoradoColorado 5,770,545 $69,117 $385,200 713 2,6% 39,4% 3 11,3% 72 5,9%
HawaiiHawaii 1,416,589 $77,765 $622,700 1,200 2,7% 32,0% 2 10,1% 5 16,1%
VermontVermont 627,180 $57,513 $210,700 29 2,2% 36,8% 17 10,9% 0 3,5%
MinnesotaMinnesota 5,655,925 $68,388 $240,800 920 3,2% 34,8% 1 10,2% 37 4,1%
North DakotaNorth Dakota 760,900 $61,843 $209,600 252 2,5% 28,9% 20 10,7% 0 2,2%
MarylandMaryland 6,062,917 $80,776 $292,300 5,146 3,6% 39,0% 16 9,5% 9 9,2%
WashingtonWashington 7,666,343 $70,979 $395,000 5,146 4,5% 34,5% 4 12,0% 15 10,7%
IdahoIdaho 1,790,182 $52,225 $275,100 56 2,9% 26,8% 27 14,2% 4 2,8%
CaliforniaCalifornia 39,747,267 $71,805 $552,100 696 3,9% 32,6% 8 14,8% 118 16,9%
DelawareDelaware 975,033 $62,852 $237,200 8 3,7% 31,0% 19 11,8% 11 3,9%
New YorkNew York 19,491,339 $64,894 $305,800 4,219 4,0% 35,3% 14 14,7% 10 13,4%
OregonOregon 4,245,901 $60,212 $351,700 553 4,1% 32,3% 29 14,6% 12 3,1%
MaineMaine 1,342,097 $56,277 $237,100 11 2,8% 30,3% 15 12,5% 0 7,3%
NebraskaNebraska 1,940,919 $59,970 $170,100 884 3,1% 30,6% 24 11,6% 0 6,4%
Rhode IslandRhode Island 1,056,738 $63,870 $285,500 425 3,6% 33,0% 11 12,9% 11 24,6%
WisconsinWisconsin 5,832,661 $59,305 $192,900 759 3,3% 29,0% 13 12,0% 11 11,1%
South DakotaSouth Dakota 892,631 $56521 $195,700 232 3,0% 27,8% 32 13,4% 1 4,6%
MontanaMontana 1,074,532 $53,386 $241,700 269 3,4% 30,7% 22 14,0% 6 3,5%
WyomingWyoming 572,381 $60,434 $237,100 23 3,8% 26,7% 6 10,9% 7 1,9%
FloridaFlorida 21,646,155 $52,594 $238,600 534 3,2% 28,5% 25 15,1% 106 1,3%
IowaIowa 3,167,997 $58,570 $146,900 232 2,6% 27,7% 34 11,6% 38 7,5%
KansasKansas 2,910,931 $56,422 $141,500 734 3,1% 32,3% 38 12,4% 47 1,3%
AlaskaAlaska 735,720 $73,181 $326,300 3,804 6.2% 29,0% 12 9,9% 44 18,7%
IllinoisIllinois 12,700,381 $62,992 $184,000 1,937 3,9% 33,4% 33 13,2% 103 6,9%
GeorgiaGeorgia 10,627,767 $56,183 $195,500 754 3,4% 29,9% 46 16,5% 93 2,8%
TexasTexas 29,087,070 $59,206 $200,100 1,162 3,4% 28,7% 29 15,7% 176 5,5%
South CarolinaSouth Carolina 5,147,111 $50,570 $171,800 174 2,6% 27,0% 41 16,2% 61 4,4%
North CarolinaNorth Carolina 10,497,741 $52,752 $191,400 0 4,0% 29,9% 37 15,7% 107 3,3%
MissouriMissouri 6,147,861 $53,578 $163,700 1,591 3,1% 28,2% 40 14,2% 0 2,2%
NevadaNevada 3,087,025 $58,003 $292,900 1,826 4,1% 23,7% 28 14,0% 10 1,3%
MichiganMichigan 10,020,472 $54,909 $154,700 1,165 4,1% 28,1% 39 15,2% 108 7,6%
ArizonaArizona 7,275,070 $56,581 $258,700 2,906 4,8% 28,4% 23 16,6% 0 3,1%
IndianaIndiana 6,718,616 $54,181 $148,500 1,675 3,2% 25,3% 36 14,1% 309 3,4%
PennsylvaniaPennsylvania 12,813,969 $59,195 $177,500 3,572 4,2% 30,1% 21 12,7% 280 7,1%
New MexicoNew Mexico 2,096,034 $46,744 $196,300 194 4,8% 26,9% 31 20,2% 3 3,0%
TennesseeTennessee 6,833,793 $51,340 $172,000 2,028 3,4% 26,1% 35 16,3% 78 2,4%
OhioOhio 11,718,568 $54,021 $143,300 1,400 4,2% 27,2% 47 14,5% 193 5,8%
AlabamaAlabama 4,898,246 $48,123 $135,500 903 2,8% 24,5% 44 17,5% 23 2,1%
OklahomaOklahoma 3,948,950 $50,051 $125,800 1,230 3,3% 24,8% 49 15,7% 81 5,3%
MississippiMississippi 2,987,895 $43,529 $129,700 66 5,5% 21,3% 48 20,8% 37 6,0%
KentuckyKentucky 4,484,047 $48,375 $149,300 491 4,3% 23,2% 42 17,7% 11 2,3%
West VirginiaWest Virginia 1,791,951 $43,469 $99,700 35 4.8% 19,9% 43 17,3% 11 4,8%
ArkansasArkansas 3,026,412 $45,869 $129,800 1,326 3,5% 22,0% 44 17,6% 32 6,3%
LouisianaLouisiana 4,652,581 $49,973 $147,900 903 4,5% 23,4% 50 19,0% 5 9,1%

Our Method To Find Out The Best Places For Life in the US

To do so, our specialists amass information received from reliable resources. They turn to such entities as the FBI and the U.S. Labour Dept, not to mention such organizations as the EPA ( Environmental Protection Agency ) and the UHF ( United Health Foundation ). Having the data pulled, they go forward to distinguish the most crucial factors to use as key metrics.

Top 10 Criteria In The Base Of Our Rankings For Every State

  • The density of Population (it better be higher)
  • Average Income, $
  • Median House Cost, $
  • Criminal Situation, (Violent, Robbery, Homicide, Theft, etc.)
  • Unemployment index, %
  • Education Quality, %
  • Medical Care (medical policies, common health concerns, ecology, condition of hospitals)
  • Poverty Index, %
  • Environmental Factors (water and air, waste and pollution )
  • Infrastructural Development (buildings and roads, transport and commuting)
  • Population, residents per square mile

The more, the better. This seems to be a universal rule for several states enlisted in our guide, which has the highest population figures. This implies that more people occupy the territory of the state. This factor is essential to consider if one prefers broad, people-free areas, ensuring the safety of life in the area. Surprisingly, the higher the population is, the safer is life, statistics demonstrate.

  • Income, $ (the richer, the safer)

WIth well-off neighbors around, one can feel safer than in a place with a high poverty rate. The residents’ average income is a point to focus on to get a broader view of the situation in the state, the choice of accommodation, kind of schools and clinics in the area.

  • Median Home Value Index, $

Such things as proper education, low crime level, and high opportunities to get a well-paid job are usually found in places where real estate costs are higher. Some of the states have a bustling estate market now and provide a variety of options.

  • Criminal Side (look for the lowest rates)

Our analysts scrutinized information about each of the 50 states and then used more detailed metrics to extract the most precise results.They added the violent crime rates, robberies, crimes concerning transport, etc., based on the statistical research provided by the FBA and other governmental structures. The figures obtained are of the utmost accuracy.

  • Rate of Unemployment, %

Those who search for a perfect state to live should consider those with the lowest unemployment rate. Unemployment populations in America range from 2.2%-6.2%, depending on the state. The Bureau of Labour Statistics kindly provided us with this info about the latest updates. The high unemployment rate is a direct sign of faulty economic policies or inadequate health care systems and low-quality living conditions.

  • Education

In this section, our specialists checked the population of Bachelor and higher degree holders in each state. To climb the career ladder successfully, one must have a degree these days. With the education level dangling close to the bottom line, it might get quite problematic to find suitable job options, and becoming unemployed might be a matter of time only.

  • Medicine

The factor of healthcare is hard to overlook. The figures concerning medical rates differ by state. They may depend on such factors as people’s attitudes, approaches to policies, medical care, average health rates of the residents, including both physical and mental health metrics. The United Health Foundation provided us with up-to-date info on the subject.

  • Poverty Rate, % (it better be lower)

Consulted with the World Population Review, our analysts found out the highest and the lowest average poverty rates. Included in our top are ten most affluent states of the country, showing perfect housing conditions, excellent educational institutions, and utmost health.

  • Environmental Rate

The state of the environment is a vital factor to take into consideration. The trends from the Environmental Protection Agency demonstrate that residents of some states are exposed to a high environmental risk caused by contamination of natural resources and other kinds of pollution. Our specialists considered the following:

  • Air (number of violating facilities)
  • Water to drink (condition of public water systems)
  • Dangerous Waste (facilities with violations)
  • Pesticides (violations of worker protection standards)
  • Other water facilities (non-complying facilities)
  • Infrastructure Rate

The knowledge of the state of infrastructure in the state is vital for modern people in America. The factors have a significant influence on lives and their quality. Our specialists consulted with the Federal Highway Administration to make the ranking perfect, and the following aspects were concerned:

  • Terrible road condition, % (the lower the mark, the better)
  • Structurally Deficient Bridge, % (the same here)
  • Highway Spending By Vehicle, $ (look for the lowest)
  • Time spent on commuting, minutes (the faster, the better)

Our analysts scrutinized each of the factors to provide a full overview of the best states to live in the USA. Reports compiled, every state was put on the list, and each of them received 0-5 marks for each factor considered.

Of course, it was time-consuming, but the result made up for it entirely because each state was considered thoroughly, every state’s info was summed up and demonstrated on our spreadsheet. A maximum possible amount is 50 points. Have a look at what our team has to show to our readers.

10 Best States For Life in the USA

Our team considered each state’s score, based on our carefully chosen metrics, to get and provide our readers with the full picture. Among the best and safest states across the USA, these 10 hit the chart: Virginia, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Utah, New Jersey, Connecticut, Colorado, Hawaii, Vermont, and Minnesota. Familiarize yourself with more detailed data, including demographic rates, criminal situations, figures in poverty, and unemployment.

  • Virginia

Virginia is often referred to as a state for lovers, with its natural beauty to motivate such ideas. Its bays and mountains, lengthy coastlines full of beautiful beaches, it is the guarantee that a nature-lover will surely appreciate the state. Geographically, the state is an island, covered in forests by 50%, and it takes only a little time to drive to the US capital, DC. Should a family look for a secure place to live and breed, they surely need to consider Virginia.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

206.7
Density

With 206.7 of total density, the state has its most populated metropolitans, such as Fairfax, for instance, where more than one million people are residing. The Eastern part of Virginia is the most populated area.

  • Massachusetts

The state expands over the territory of 10,565 square miles, but it is not very densely populated. Adorned by its picturesque bays and riversides, the state takes pride in bustling big cities, high hills, inviting coastlines, and the Cape Cod peninsula to crown it all.

All these and other factors mentioned below make the state one of the best in our rankings.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

6,902,149
People

With the 15th-largest population across the country, amounting to 840 square miles, Massachusetts comprises highly-populated giants, such as Somerville, Chelsea, Allston, Brighton, and Boston. The latter one, for example, accommodates nearly 6,902,149 people.

  • New Hampshire

Located in New England, the state hits the tops of our list, next to Massachusetts and Vermont. And the state is quite notable, with its close situation near Canada and the abundance of French-Canadians who amount for one-fourth of the overall population.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

147 
Density rate

In terms of area and population, the state ranks the fifth and the tenth, accordingly. Therefore, people of the state feel more freedom and space. With 147 in the density rate, the state has a majority of the white population. The parts close to Massachusetts are the most populated.

  • Utah

The state, which joined the country after 44 other states, has become the 13th biggest in the USA. It touches the state Arizona in four places and borders New Mexico and Wyoming, which adds to the state’s overall attraction for tourists; among the other touristic must-sees, there are five large national parks and picturesque natural beauties. The state also drew the world’s curiosity while hosting the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City in 2002.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

36.53 
Residents by square mile

Utah’s density of population amounts to only 36.53 residents by square mile. Its position in the rating of populous states is far at the back, the 30th, Salt Lake City being its most populous city. In the south-west, the population density is relatively low.

  • New Jersey

With New York in the north, Philadelphia, south, and a broad swath of coastline full of beaches in the east, New Jersey sits comfortably and cozily in the proximity to Baltimore and Washington. New Jersey is not a sizable state, being 170 miles long and only 70 miles wide; however, the territory comprises such renowned water reservoirs as Hudson Palisades, the Jersey Shore, and the Delaware Gap, among others.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

1,210.10
Residents by square mile

The population density in New Jersey is leading in the USA, with 1,210.10 residents a square mile. As to the number of the residents, New Jersey holds the 11th place across the US, despite its small size. Metropolitan areas are easily accessible as an ample part of the population is scattered across suburbs and rural areas.

  • Connecticut

Often united in grouping with New York and New Jersey, and bordering with Rhode Island and Massachusetts, Connecticut is widely called a ‘Constitution State’, which obtained its name in 1787 after the Great Compromise.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

739
Residents by square mile

Connecticut has a low density of population, only 739 by a square mile. The Southwest of the state is mostly populated, as well as the center, with cities like Bridgeport, Hartford, and New Haven. Around 75% of the population is predominantly white; however, the number of people of foreign origin increases.

  • Colorado

Among the attractions of Colorado, one should mention the abundance of green territories and mountains granting fresh air and areas for outdoor activities to the residents. The world’s renowned Rocky Mountains, the Colorado River and Plateau, and the Great Plains are a beloved spot for tourists and the locals. Sharing a border with Nebraska, Oklahoma, Kansas, New Mexico, Wyoming, Arizona, and Utah, the state has a variable climate: from Mediterranian and subtropical to desertified areas, cold and dry.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

52
Residents by square mile

Metropolitan areas of the state entice the majority of the population. The density is near 52 residents per square mile, making the state 37th across the country in terms of the density. The central area is the most populous here, with cities like Boulder, Colorado Springs, and Denver in the lead.

  • Hawaii

The Pacific Paradise, the Aloha State, and other pleasant names belong to Hawaii, and this is entirely justified, as it is definitely among the most beautiful locations worldwide. As it is an island, its private life is ensured geographically. The state has a proliferation of beaches, plant and animal world’s representatives, and a relaxed way of life set by the locals and picked by the residents. The cost of living there is considerably ample, due to all the advantages described above. However, the state, in fact, is far from Paradise, statistically.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

221
Residents by square mile

The density is among the lowest in the country, only 221 residents per square mile. Oahu is the most populous region there. The rest of the population is scattered across the seven large islands.

  • Vermont

As to the size, the USA has only five states that are smaller than Vermont. The population is comparatively low. The state boasts its natural resources; it houses many indigenous tribes and famous for maple syrup production.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

 9,616
Residents by square mile

Compared to other states, the population is rather small: 9,616 residents per square mile. The northwest part of the state is the most populous, with Brighton is the leader having 42,000 people.

  • Minnesota

The state enjoys such prominent examples of natural beauty as the Great Lakes; it is in the midst of vast prairies and forests. Next to only Alaska, the state is close to the very north of the country. The state shares borderlines with Iowa, Wisconsin, North Dakota, Mantiboa, and Ontario, with the Lake Superior a pearl of its territory. The temperatures are extremely low in wintertime, and the summers can be sweltering, so the factor in retaining residents within the state is its utmost beauty of nature.

  • Population

  • Income

  • Home Value

  • Crime

  • Unemployment

  • Education

  • Medicine

  • Poverty

  • Environment

  • Infrastructure

 9,616
Residents by square mile

The density of the population is quite low, with only 68.9 residents per square mile. The largest group of residents comprises the whites, who started developing their settlements in the middle of the 19th century. Now, the area has accumulated a more considerable population, making approximately a million every hundred years.

Best State VS Worst State

Our specialists have considered several metrics, used the assistance of major companies, and addressed an ample amount of statistics to compile the shortlist and comprehensive guide across the top10 best states for living in the USA.

Concerning the key metrics, our team chose and compared the best worst of the regions in terms of health and crime statistics, home value and median income, education, environment, and infrastructure, as well as poverty and rate of unemployment.

Regarding the metrics, every state showed its best and worst sides, but now our readers have a broader picture of the best and the worst places in the USA.

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About the author 

Debra Broxton

Debra is highly-competent, scrupulous, and hard-working. As a journalist, Jane relies both on the rich experience and deep researching. When working on new articles and reviews, she strives to scrutinize topics thoroughly and provide readers with all the crucial facts.


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