Best Indianapolis Suburbs To Live For 2020


We analyzed over 33 places around Indianapolis to identify the most in demand places to live.

Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the best Indianapolis suburbs.

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Big city living isn't for everyone--but at the same time, urban areas certainly have their perks.

There's the culture, the food, the arts, the food, the energy, and you know, the food. But there are drawbacks. There's traffic, expensive parking, expensive housing--pretty much, expensive everything, depending on which big city you're looking at.

But that's where the suburbs come in--they have all of the benefits of being near big cities, without actually having to be big cities.

Of course, not all suburbs of Indianapolis are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado...

What's the best suburb of Indianapolis? Carmel ranks as the best suburb of Indianapolis for 2020 based on the most recent Census and FBI data. If you happen to be a resident of Carmel, you're probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

We'll tell you what makes each of these 10 Indianapolis 'burbs better than the rest--but first, a bit about our methodology.

Note: This result may differ from our state wide data as we did not include commute times and crime for this analysis to allow for a larger selection of suburbs.
Or feel free to check out some more reading about Indiana:

The 10 Best Indianapolis Suburbs To Live For 2020

Carmel, IN

Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 90,163
Rank Last Year: 2 (Up 1)
Median Income: $116,867
Unemployment Rate: 2.3%
Poverty Rate: 3.5%
More on Carmel: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Carmel is always mentioned as one of the best suburbs in the Indianapolis area. We'll tell you the good about "Awesome Carmel."

Everyone here is rich; families average $116,867 a year, which is the 2nd highest in the Indianapolis region. And only 2.34% are out of work. Homes average more than $330,600 each.

Review Of Carmel by HomeSnacks User

I know someone who moved to Carmel and she thinks she's above everybody else. The only reason she lives there is she rents. She married a much older guy who she thinks has lots of money. When that well runs dry, she'll be off to find number 6.

Zionsville, IN

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 26,209
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 1)
Median Income: $132,409
Unemployment Rate: 3.1%
Poverty Rate: 2.6%
More on Zionsville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Zionsville is the second best 'burb we looked at near Indianapolis for 2020.

It ranks 1st for incomes in the area and only 2.44% of residents lack insurance, good for 3rd best.

Mccordsville, IN

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 6,523
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 3)
Median Income: $97,100
Unemployment Rate: 0.9%
Poverty Rate: 2.5%
More on Mccordsville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Here in McCordsville, it's really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you'll see in the Indianapolis metro area.

The bad side? Schools are more crowded, and the cost of living puts a large part of the city out of reach for most families.

But price is based on demand and a lot of people want to live in McCordsville.

Westfield, IN

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 37,769
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Income: $93,002
Unemployment Rate: 2.7%
Poverty Rate: 5.8%
More on Westfield: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Westfield ranks as the 4th best suburb of Indianapolis for 2020.

You won't find many better places to raise your kids in the region than in Westfield and the schools are some of the best around.

New Palestine, IN

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 2,235
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 1)
Median Income: $76,625
Unemployment Rate: 2.5%
Poverty Rate: 7.9%
More on New Palestine: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Coming in as the fifth best is New Palestine.

New Palestine gets kudos for having the 6th most expensive homes in the Indianapolis area, where houses sell for an average of $203,400. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Pittsboro, IN

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 3,298
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 2)
Median Income: $72,961
Unemployment Rate: 2.8%
Poverty Rate: 4.0%
More on Pittsboro: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Pittsboro is proud of its 6th place finish on this list. And here's why.

Most residents have great jobs and the unemployment rate sits at 2.8% which is 7th best in the area.

According to online reports, Pittsboro is quickly becoming one of the more affluent suburbs in the Indianapolis area, meaning you need to get in soon.

Noblesville, IN

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 61,558
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 2)
Median Income: $77,717
Unemployment Rate: 3.5%
Poverty Rate: 6.4%
More on Noblesville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The 7th best suburb on our list goes to Noblesville.

Noblesville schools are some of the best in the region, and crime is really low. The cost of living makes it a lot more desirable for many families, especially first-time home buyers.

And, it's only 19.4 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

Avon, IN

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 17,169
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 2)
Median Income: $91,587
Unemployment Rate: 5.7%
Poverty Rate: 3.3%
More on Avon: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Avon is growing quickly, and for a good reason. Crime is far below average, and most residents are gainfully employed. Even the cost of living is reasonable.

A solid 5.22% of people lack insurance, good for 8th in the area.

Bargersville, IN

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 6,950
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 2)
Median Income: $82,036
Unemployment Rate: 3.8%
Poverty Rate: 4.4%
More on Bargersville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Is 'Everything Better In Bargersville?'

Almost.

It placed 9th on our list thanks to the fact that it's really expensive to live here, but the schools are great, so you get what you pay for in that regard.

Brownsburg, IN

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 25,264
Rank Last Year: 9 (Down 1)
Median Income: $70,354
Unemployment Rate: 3.7%
Poverty Rate: 4.7%
More on Brownsburg: Real Estate | Data | Photos

And rounding out the top ten for 2020 is Brownsburg.

This city is far above average in every category, and the best part? It's far more affordable than the other cities listed above. So, you get a big bang for your buck here.

How We Determined The Best Suburbs Around Indianapolis for 2020

Figuring out the best suburbs around Indianapolis was pretty simple; we just needed to list several things that people like, and then find out which cities have the most of those things.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible:

  • Low unemployment rate
  • High Median household incomes
  • Population density (lots of things to do)
  • High home values
  • A lot of college educated people
  • Low poverty
  • High rate of insured families

Then we used the newest American Community Survey data for 2014-2018 to research each suburb.

FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Indianapolis.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 2,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 32 suburbs to evaluate around Indianapolis.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 32 in each category, where 1 was the "best.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.

And finally, we crowned the city with the best quality of life index the "Best Suburb near Indianapolis." We're lookin' at you, Carmel. You can download the data here.

Read on below to learn more about what it's like to live in the best of the best. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from best to worst.

Welcome to the Best Indianapolis 'Burbs of 2020

We said it once and we'll say it again--life in the big city isn't for everyone. At least not all the time.

So if you're hankering for some of the amenities of a larger city like Indianapolis, but don't want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might just be for you.

For more Indiana reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Indianapolis Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income
1 Carmel, IN 90,163 $116,867
2 Zionsville, IN 26,209 $132,409
3 Mccordsville, IN 6,523 $97,100
4 Westfield, IN 37,769 $93,002
5 New Palestine, IN 2,235 $76,625
6 Pittsboro, IN 3,298 $72,961
7 Noblesville, IN 61,558 $77,717
8 Avon, IN 17,169 $91,587
9 Bargersville, IN 6,950 $82,036
10 Brownsburg, IN 25,264 $70,354
11 Danville, IN 9,791 $75,653
12 Cicero, IN 4,861 $68,450
13 Cumberland, IN 5,792 $72,626
14 New Whiteland, IN 5,955 $63,901
15 Whiteland, IN 4,394 $64,713
16 Fortville, IN 4,460 $62,156
17 Pendleton, IN 4,213 $68,778
18 Greenwood, IN 56,791 $62,025
19 Plainfield, IN 32,045 $62,828
20 Greenfield, IN 21,871 $53,061
21 Lapel, IN 2,327 $52,841
22 Franklin, IN 24,813 $59,064
23 Lebanon, IN 15,816 $50,480
24 Ingalls, IN 2,282 $52,917
25 Mooresville, IN 9,604 $55,554
26 Lawrence, IN 48,405 $52,048
27 Shelbyville, IN 18,898 $51,373
28 Speedway, IN 12,188 $41,325
29 Beech Grove, IN 14,912 $40,741
30 Martinsville, IN 11,646 $46,635
31 Sheridan, IN 2,847 $43,947
32 Morgantown, IN 2,627 $24,452

How Is Your Town In ?

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.