Ranking the Nation’s Top Spots to Settle

U.S. News & World Report has unveiled the 2024-2025 Best Places to Live in the U.S., ranking the 150 major U.S. cities based on value, desirability, job market, and quality of life.

Naples, Florida, took the top spot due to its strong job market and quality of life score. New data considerations–including a shift from metropolitan area-based data, used in previous editions of the rankings, to city-based data–resulted in many new appearances in the top 25 from places in the Midwest and South.

“The incorporation of city-based data further localizes the Best Places to Live rankings, empowering those looking for a place to call home to consider factors directly impacting the livability and overall experiences associated with a given place,” said Erika Giovanetti, Loans Expert and Reporter, U.S. News & World Report.

Coming in the second-place spot, Boise, Idaho ranked second highest in terms of the strength of its value, job market and quality of life scores, and Colorado Springs, Colorado, landed in the third spot due to high desirability and value scores. In addition, the Carolinas secured three of the top 10 places due to their strong job market and quality of life scores. Greenville, South Carolina, debuted in the top 10 at four; Charlotte, North Carolina, placed fifth; and Raleigh, North Carolina, snagged the sixth-place spot.

Best Places to Live in the U.S. in 2024-2025

From top to bottom, the following is the list of Best Places to Live in the U.S.:

  • Naples, Florida
  • Boise, Idaho
  • Colorado Springs, Colorado
  • Greenville, South Carolina
  • Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Huntsville, Alabama
  • Virginia Beach, Virginia
  • Austin, Texas
  • Boulder, Colorado

Careers and employment projections

This year, U.S. News adjusted its scoring weights for stronger considerations of a city’s value and job market.

“Rising concerns about career prospects, housing affordability and increased cost of goods and services are reflected in this year’s rankings,” added Giovanetti. “While quality of life remains the top priority for many Americans, a city’s value and job market are becoming increasingly important for those looking for a place to live.”

The 2024-2025 Best Places to Live were determined based on a methodology that takes into account the city’s job market, value, quality of life and desirability. These measures were weighted in part based on a public survey of thousands of individuals throughout the U.S. to find what qualities they consider important in a place to live. The methodology also includes data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Federal Emergency Management Agency , U.S. Census Bureau, FBI, Sharecare, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the U.S. News rankings of the “Best High Schools and Best Hospitals.”

Click here for more information on U.S. News & World Report’s 2024-2025 Best Places to Live in the U.S.

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Picture of Eric C. Peck

Eric C. Peck

Eric C. Peck has 25-plus years’ experience covering the mortgage industry, most recently serving as Editor-in-Chief for National Mortgage Professional Magazine. He graduated from the New York Institute of Technology, where he received his B.A. in Communication Arts/Media. After graduating, he began his professional career with Videography Magazine before landing in the mortgage space. Peck has edited three published books, and has served as Copy Editor for Entrepreneur.com.
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