10 Best Places to Raise a Family

Discover why children and parents have more advantages from living in these cities.

Many of the key reasons Americans move revolve around doing what’s best for their families. We move at certain key stages – as we get married, as we have kids, as our kids become old enough for school, and as our kids head off to college.

The communities we choose to live in as we raise children are arguably the most important, as they tend to be some of the places we live the longest. Thus, Livability created this 10 Best Cities for Families list to offer some great examples of metros that truly stand out as great places to raise your kids.

We crunched the data. We looked at the quality of the schools, the crime rate, and measures of the quality of healthcare and economy. We gave points to communities that are walkable, diverse, have lots of parks and active children’s sections in their libraries. We favored communities with shorter commute times (so working parents can be home more and on the road less) and larger populations of other kids to play with.

As with all of our Top 10 lists, our data-driven process produces a shortlist which our editors then use to guide the selection of cities. We try to choose cities of a variety of sizes and in a variety of places. Not every city will necessarily be a perfect match, but our hope is that one of the 10 will be a good fit for you--and in this case for your family, too. You can check out more information on each of these 10 cities – and thousands more – on Livability.com.



Ranking Criteria

Percentage of School Age Children (5-18) • Number of Parks • Crime Rate • Graduation Rate • Quality of Schools in the Area • Walk Score • Average Commute Time • Number of Libraries • Percentage of Families in Poverty

10. Palo Alto, CA Population 66,478
9. Bowling Green, OH Population 31,506
8. Homewood, AL Population 25,535
7. St. George, UT Population 76,915
6. Oak Park, IL Population 52,080
5. Chula Vista, CA Population 257,296
4. Holland, MI Population 33,526
3. Newton, MA Population 87,675
2. Chandler, AZ Population 250,202
1. Rockville, MD Population 64,331