2014

Top 100 Best Places to Live

Our first annual ranking

Click here for the Top 100 Best Places to Live 2015 list.

Big cities tend to get all the love. We here at Livability know that there are great stories to be told in smaller places, too. Our ranking of the 2014 top 100 best places to live focuses on small to mid-sized cities and what makes them great places to live and work. We worked with trusted partners, stellar advisors, and the best public and private data sources to develop our ranking. The cities on the list excelled in our criteria. These towns are places where residents are able to take full advantage of a wide variety of amenities and offerings - everything from parks and museums to different commuting options to hospitals. Spend some time getting to know them and when it comes time for your next move, maybe you'll think small.

 

600 = The city’s overall score, based on the weighted sum of the eight component scores.
Liv 100
Rank
City
State
Livability Score Econ
iThe business community should be thriving.Read more.
Health
iResidents should have access to affordable health care options.Read more.
Housing
iHomes should meet the needs and be affordable for residents.Read more.
Civic
iResidents should be engaged in all the city has to offer.Read more.
Educat.
iSchools should support life-long learners.Read more.
Amenities
iA city needs great things to do to be a great place to live.Read more.
Demo.
iA city should work for a diverse range of residents.Read more.
Infrast.
iGetting around should be easy, with many options.Read more.
#1 Palo Alto
California
646 54 46 51 74 85 82 69 67
#2 Boulder
Colorado
643 54 73 57 70 89 78 25 70
#3 Berkeley
California
643 58 57 41 76 89 79 56 68
#4 Durham
North Carolina
640 60 78 47 52 70 84 73 50
#5 Madison
Wisconsin
639 66 71 54 73 71 80 34 62
#6 Miami Beach
Florida
639 54 82 25 68 68 89 58 76
#7 Rochester
Minnesota
636 69 56 68 62 71 70 63 48
#8 Salt Lake City
Utah
635 52 86 45 54 73 83 50 66
#9 Eugene
Oregon
633 53 63 49 77 81 87 35 65
#10 Reno
Nevada
631 53 83 45 51 70 90 66 48
#11 Rockville
Maryland
631 68 39 64 76 62 71 66 63
#12 Boise
Idaho
630 51 72 59 69 77 83 41 53
#13 Bellevue
Washington
630 55 31 54 69 78 86 77 64
#14 Ann Arbor
Michigan
627 47 68 40 77 92 73 43 72
#15 Salem
Oregon
626 55 74 52 43 65 83 66 64
#16 Santa Clara
California
622 57 46 55 63 61 83 85 55
#17 Provo
Utah
622 51 80 57 71 73 70 28 66
#18 Overland Park
Kansas
621 60 52 60 76 86 71 54 42
#19 Greensboro
North Carolina
620 51 78 40 55 81 81 74 39
#20 Tampa
Florida
620 47 80 31 42 73 93 75 62
#21 Pasadena
California
620 53 54 40 59 75 88 68 68
#22 Alhambra
California
619 55 81 42 51 68 61 79 63
#23 Bozeman
Montana
617 61 85 53 82 79 59 9 62
#24 White Plains
New York
615 59 48 46 79 65 62 71 72
#25 Fort Lauderdale
Florida
615 48 72 31 65 73 82 60 70
#26 Bellingham
Washington
615 55 75 54 75 74 72 28 59
#27 Charlottesville
Virginia
614 44 89 48 68 67 63 43 71
#28 Lexington
Kentucky
613 54 75 47 65 82 80 51 36
#29 Anaheim
California
613 41 71 48 37 71 88 82 57
#30 Cedar Rapids
Iowa
613 63 77 56 65 69 68 43 46
#31 Huntsville
Alabama
613 49 67 53 71 79 79 64 30
#32 Ames
Iowa
612 62 85 55 77 74 48 28 57
#33 Torrance
California
611 61 36 49 66 81 81 69 54
#34 Burbank
California
610 58 60 44 67 66 79 64 57
#35 Gainesville
Florida
610 57 91 32 65 78 74 45 49
#36 Albany
New York
609 47 85 30 64 71 67 52 79
#37 Irvine
California
607 59 3 57 78 88 93 79 42
#38 Santa Barbara
California
606 49 54 37 67 79 91 64 55
#39 Santa Rosa
California
606 51 57 54 65 51 89 70 51
#40 Orlando
Florida
606 53 84 35 32 75 84 65 59
#41 Frederick
Maryland
605 69 37 65 60 69 64 72 51
#42 Tacoma
Washington
605 45 62 46 52 64 88 73 60
#43 Tallahassee
Florida
605 51 85 38 66 82 87 42 33
#44 Tempe
Arizona
605 47 61 45 61 86 86 37 67
#45 Santa Monica
California
604 56 54 39 62 87 83 45 67
#46 Columbia
Missouri
604 67 75 49 71 79 72 31 37
#47 Iowa City
Iowa
604 58 82 52 82 65 53 28 62
#48 Asheville
North Carolina
603 59 83 43 53 74 72 43 55
#49 Fullerton
California
603 53 25 50 65 80 82 87 52
#50 Aurora
Colorado
601 52 75 56 33 58 83 75 49
#51 Camarillo
California
600 53 19 69 82 71 81 63 50
#52 Fremont
California
600 56 30 57 66 72 81 80 46
#53 Glendale
California
600 40 74 43 61 52 89 61 64
#54 Cambridge
Massachusetts
599 60 58 42 60 77 69 54 65
#55 San Luis Obispo
California
599 44 71 49 85 75 73 29 54
#56 Denton
Texas
598 59 60 49 77 74 72 39 51
#57 Charleston
South Carolina
597 58 75 42 66 80 80 39 39
#58 Richmond
Virginia
596 34 88 33 56 73 77 53 69
#59 Henderson
Nevada
596 61 53 53 67 85 80 49 30
#60 St. Petersburg
Florida
595 46 85 31 62 64 84 51 59
#61 Missoula
Montana
594 54 91 49 73 66 65 12 61
#62 Knoxville
Tennessee
594 50 92 44 61 74 84 31 39
#63 Redmond
Washington
594 64 32 61 64 69 63 65 64
#64 Fayetteville
Arkansas
593 57 86 47 72 69 69 23 48
#65 Yonkers
New York
592 44 62 43 52 46 72 86 75
#66 Greenville
South Carolina
592 46 74 39 68 78 70 57 45
#67 St. Paul
Minnesota
592 46 84 44 26 67 76 65 67
#68 West Palm Beach
Florida
591 48 72 33 63 67 80 68 48
#69 Newton
Massachusetts
591 48 16 53 82 89 72 64 65
#70 Des Moines
Iowa
591 54 87 48 25 55 74 64 62
#71 Chapel Hill
North Carolina
591 57 49 50 83 81 56 42 62
#72 Skokie
Illinois
589 52 43 51 66 85 58 66 58
#73 Cincinnati
Ohio
589 38 94 26 32 72 82 56 78
#74 Everett
Washington
589 46 60 53 49 62 72 56 76
#75 Columbus
Georgia
588 42 81 34 56 67 81 67 48
#76 Stamford
Connecticut
588 45 40 47 55 59 80 84 72
#77 West Des Moines
Iowa
588 68 52 60 63 64 56 53 53
#78 Newport News
Virginia
587 40 83 49 39 54 82 64 60
#79 Thousand Oaks
California
587 50 17 69 82 69 86 59 44
#80 Pittsburgh
Pennsylvania
587 44 87 23 60 72 76 43 73
#81 Lincoln
Nebraska
586 62 80 54 36 71 75 36 49
#82 Whittier
California
586 53 52 48 50 63 70 85 54
#83 Chattanooga
Tennessee
586 42 84 37 54 63 83 63 44
#84 Santa Clarita
California
586 53 33 67 69 57 90 65 37
#85 Sunnyvale
California
586 56 3 59 68 80 79 84 52
#86 Plano
Texas
586 56 41 60 81 51 76 64 43
#87 Redlands
California
585 60 48 48 64 68 65 76 44
#88 Lakewood
Colorado
584 52 50 61 69 64 82 41 50
#89 Scottsdale
Arizona
584 48 49 52 77 92 89 24 41
#90 San Rafael
California
583 50 42 51 63 64 78 62 65
#91 Anchorage
Alaska
582 55 43 62 46 76 85 58 41
#92 Hayward
California
582 44 51 50 39 53 84 90 60
#93 Santa Ana
California
579 33 76 46 31 56 86 71 68
#94 Orange
California
579 54 47 55 60 32 80 85 54
#95 Helena
Montana
579 72 81 54 80 59 42 15 52
#96 Vancouver
Washington
578 46 69 55 62 37 80 62 50
#97 Murray
Utah
578 69 53 67 61 70 55 29 54
#98 Fargo
North Dakota
578 63 67 53 67 71 66 18 54
#99 Costa Mesa
California
577 51 40 44 64 69 80 65 59
#100 St. Louis
Missouri
577 40 97 26 33 60 79 64 68
Livability.com's ranking of the Best Places to Live includes cities and towns with populations between 20,000 to 350,000. Ties are broken by unrounded numbers. Please see the full methodology for data sources and details.
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