10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Georgia For 2019


We used science and data to determine which cities in Georgia have the best set up for children: a lot to do, good schools, and no crime.

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2019. This is our second time ranking the best cities for families in Georgia.

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Did you grow up as a Southern child in the U.S.? Did ice creams mean the world to you in the summer because the heat was so intense? Were summer beach trips a norm?

What about running through the backyard around dusk with a mason jar searching for lightning bugs? Did you learn to make fried chicken from scratch from your grandparents? How about spending weekends with your Girl Scout and Boy Scout troops selling cookies and popcorn?

If you grew up in Georgia, perhaps some of your favorite childhood memories were sparked while reading this. In Georgia, many people live outside of large towns, so childhood is filled with playing outdoors, with imaginary games, and with riding bikes with your friends.

Maybe you even spent a morning or two helping your family on the farm, learning to grow your own plants in a miniature garden of your own.

Obviously, you want to raise your children in the best of places. Georgia is a great state for families because it’s super affordable, there are a bunch of family activities available, and vacation options are plentiful and cheap.

So where are the best cities for families in Georgia? If you had to pick one, which one would it be? Luckily for you, we have figured out which cities are the best of the best.

We analyzed 68 cities in Georgia and ranked them in terms of “family-friendliness,” which was based on factors you would find important when looking for a place for your family, like crime rates.

From this list came one clear winner. Can you guess which city ranks the best place for families for 2019? You guessed it– Decatur, Georgia.

Decatur is a suburb of Atlanta and is home to top university, Emory. You can find beautiful houses, well-manicured lawns, and amazing schools for your kids in this town.

Other top cities include Jefferson and Marietta. All of our best-ranked cities for families are located in the northern parts of Georgia, near Atlanta.

So if you are interested in living near the big city, but have the ability to go home to a quaint and quiet home at night, this state is the place for you and your family.

Curious to see where your favorite cities in Georgia rank? Read on to learn more about our methodology and to see why our top 10 are the best of the best for families in Georgia for 2019.

Or, check out some more reading about Georgia and the best places for families in the country:

The 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Georgia For 2019

Decatur, GA

Overall SnackAbility

7.5
/10

Population: 22,022
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 82
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 38.8%
More on Decatur: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Decatur is a city in, and the county seat of, DeKalb County, Georgia, United States and is part of the Atlanta metropolitan area. With a population of 20,148 in the 2013 census, the municipality is sometimes assumed to be larger since multiple zip codes in unincorporated DeKalb County bear the Decatur name. The city is served by three MARTA rail stations. The city is located approximately 5 miles northeast of downtown Atlanta and shares its western border with Atlanta.

Review Of Decatur by HomeSnacks User

If you can deal with the surrounding Atlanta traffic, Decatur is a very nice city. It is very up-and-coming, with lots of trendy restaurants, a few small art galleries, and a very walkable landscape, which is rare in the Atlanta area. There are many festivals throughout the year, including art festivals, beer festivals, and a book festival in September.

Everything at Leon’s Full Service restaurant, especially the beef brisket, is great. Parking in Decatur can be a hassle, though, so be prepared to drive around looking for a spot.

Jefferson, GA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 10,259
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 56
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 39.0%
More on Jefferson: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Jefferson is a city in Jackson County, Georgia, United States. The population was 9,432 at the 2010 census. The city is the county seat of Jackson County.

Review Of Jefferson by HomeSnacks User

My grandparents used to live here and it has a lot of nostalgic value. It is a quaint little Southern town where everything seems to move at a slower place. It’s a great place to go and relax.

The town square is very nice to walk around. Also, visit the Crawford W. Long Museum!

Marietta, GA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 60,203
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 79
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 27.8%
More on Marietta: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Marietta is located in central Cobb County, Georgia, United States, and is the county’s seat and largest city.

Lawrenceville, GA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 29,287
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 80
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 31.1%
More on Lawrenceville: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Lawrenceville is a city in and the county seat of Gwinnett County, Georgia, United States. It is a suburb of Atlanta, located approximately 30 miles northeast of downtown. As of the 2010 census, the population of Lawrenceville was 28,546. In 2015, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated the city population to be 30,493. Lawrenceville has six ZIP codes, and it is part of the 678404 telephone area code, which is used throughout metropolitan Atlanta.

Review Of Lawrenceville by HomeSnacks User

I live in Lawrenceville and grew up there; the area is booming, the schools win awards, and my high school graduating class was almost 800 people.

Canton, GA

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 25,806
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 60
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 35.2%
More on Canton: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Canton is a city in and the county seat of Cherokee County, Georgia, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city had a population of 22,958, up from 7,709 in 2000.

Johns Creek, GA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 83,397
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 37
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 45.5%
More on Johns Creek: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Johns Creek is a city located in Fulton County in the U.S. state of Georgia. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the population was 76,728. The city is a northeastern suburb of Atlanta. In 2017 Johns Creek ranked third on the USA TODAY list of “50 best cities to live in.”

Milton, GA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 37,556
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 38
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 45.6%
More on Milton: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Milton is a city and suburb in Fulton County, Georgia, United States. Incorporated on December 1, 2006, it was created out of the entire unincorporated northernmost part of northern Fulton County. It is an affluent community, with an average household income within the ZIP code 30004 of $99,412. As of the 2010 census, Milton’s population was 32,661, with an estimated population of 36,662 in 2014.

Alpharetta, GA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 63,929
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 56
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 40.3%
More on Alpharetta: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Alpharetta is a city located in north Fulton County, Georgia, United States and is a suburb of Atlanta. As of the 2010 census, Alpharetta’s population was 57,551. The estimated population in 2014 was 63,038.

Review Of Alpharetta by HomeSnacks User

The schools here are great. They are safe and the teachers really care for your success. My alma mater we had a lot of graduates go off to really great colleges and it’s great that these schools are public.

Alpharetta has a lot of white and asian affluent people so not a lot of diversity. The houses here are expensive but it is worth it as the area not only has great schools but is comfortable. There are clean and safe parks situated everywhere.

Holly Springs, GA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 10,809
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 36
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 43.3%
More on Holly Springs: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Holly Springs is a city in Cherokee County, Georgia, United States. Holly Springs is located south of the center of Cherokee County

Dalton, GA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 33,540
Family Friendly Amenities Score: 40
Closest Major City: Atlanta
Households with kids: 37.3%
More on Dalton: PhotosHomes For Sale | Data

Dalton is a city in Whitfield County, Georgia, United States. It is the county seat of Whitfield County and the principal city of the Dalton, Georgia Metropolitan Statistical Area, which encompasses all of Murray and Whitfield counties.

How do you determine which place is best for families in Georgia anyways?

To give you the places in Georgia which are best for families, we have to look at a handful of metrics. Of course, we want to measure the type of people who live in each city, and make some assumptions about what’s family-friendly and what isn’t.

So we researched the internet for a database that contains all that information.

How we crunched the family friendly numbers for the Peach State

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using U.S. Census data produced for the state of Georgia, we looked at every single city in the state. We paid particular attention to:

  • Crime (Both violent and property)
  • Quality of local schools
  • Distance to a major city without necessarily being in it
  • % of households with children
  • Family-friendly amenities nearby (museums, libraries and colleges)

We then gave each city a Family Score.

The higher the score, the better the city is for families. We also limited our results to cities with populations over 10,000 people. For Georgia, that meant a total of 68 cities.

There You Have It – The Best Places To Raise A Family In Georgia

If you’re looking for a breakdown of cities in Georgia ranked by criteria that most would agree make a place a great spot for families, this is an accurate list.

Here’s a look at the best cities for singles Georgia according to the data:

  1. Dublin
  2. East Point
  3. Monroe

For more Georgia reading, check out:

Where Are The Best Places For Families In Georgia?

Rank City Population Amenities Score
1 Decatur, GA 22,022 79
2 Jefferson, GA 10,259 55
3 Marietta, GA 60,203 69
4 Lawrenceville, GA 29,287 79
5 Canton, GA 25,806 53
6 Johns Creek, GA 83,397 51
7 Milton, GA 37,556 49
8 Alpharetta, GA 63,929 32
9 Holly Springs, GA 10,809 45
10 Dalton, GA 33,540 49

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.

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