These Are The 10 Best Neighborhoods In Des Moines For 2018


We used science and data to determine which neighborhoods in Des Moines are the best of the best.

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don’t freak out.

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Do you like your neighborhood? Is it friendly, and where everyone knows their neighbors? No matter if you live in the sticks or in an apartment building in downtown Des Moines, you have a little pocket that you can call home. And each neighborhood is different.

Smaller neighborhoods usually have obvious benefits — less crime, a slower pace of life, and a lower cost of living. But not all Des Moines neighborhoods are created equal. Some are better than others. But which ones?

Instead of relying on public opinion and speculation, we wanted to get the facts straight and find out which neighborhoods in Des Moines are the best. If you’re in one of the places we’re about to highlight, odds are you know you’ve got it made.

Here are the best neighborhoods in Des Moines for 2018:

  1. Salisbury Oaks
  2. Waterbury
  3. Westwood
  4. Bloomfield-Allen
  5. Magnolia Park
  6. Beaverdale
  7. Southwestern Hills
  8. Lower Beaver
  9. Merle Hay
  10. Meredith

Read on to see how we determined the places around Des Moines that deserve a little bragging rights.

Or, if you’re thinking of moving to elsewhere in Iowa check out the best places in Iowa overall or the worst neighborhoods in Des Moines.

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How do you determine the best neighborhoods in Des Moines for 2018?

In order to rank the best neighborhoods in Des Moines, we had to determine what criteria defines a ‘best’.

Using crime, census, and extrapolated BLS data, we arrived at the following set of criteria:

  • High incomes
  • Low unemployment rates
  • Low crime
  • High home prices
  • High population densities (A proxy for things to do)

We limited the analysis to neighborhoods with over 1,000 people.

We then ranked each neighborhood with scores from 1 to 37 in each category, where 1 was the best.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each neighborhood to create a best neighborhood index.

And finally, we crowned the neighborhood with the lowest best neighborhood index the ‘Best City Neighborhood In Des Moines.’ We’re lookin’ at you, Salisbury Oaks.

Read on below to learn more about what it’s like to live in the best places Des Moines has to offer. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the neighborhoods in the city from best to worst.

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1. Salisbury Oaks

Population: 1,037
Median Income: $78,944
Median Home Value: $259,100

2. Waterbury

Population: 2,581
Median Income: $97,000
Median Home Value: $239,100

3. Westwood

Population: 1,282
Median Income: $86,513
Median Home Value: $267,500

4. Bloomfield-Allen

Population: 6,585
Median Income: $56,760
Median Home Value: $140,700

5. Magnolia Park

Population: 2,107
Median Income: $45,368
Median Home Value: $127,400

6. Beaverdale

Population: 8,215
Median Income: $63,792
Median Home Value: $138,667

7. Southwestern Hills

Population: 5,618
Median Income: $67,016
Median Home Value: $177,857

8. Lower Beaver

Population: 5,404
Median Income: $58,451
Median Home Value: $145,429

9. Merle Hay

Population: 9,524
Median Income: $55,943
Median Home Value: $127,346

10. Meredith

Population: 4,243
Median Income: $63,534
Median Home Value: $138,967

Putting A Bow On Our Analysis Of Des Moines

If you’re measuring the neighborhoods in Des Moines where crime is low and everyone wants to live, this is an accurate list.

If you’re curious, here are the worst places in Des Moines:

  1. River Bend
  2. Cheatom Park
  3. Capitol Park

For more reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Neighborhoods In Des Moines

Neighborhood Rank Population Home Prices Crimes Per 100k Unemployment Rate
Salisbury Oaks 1 1,037 $259,100 1,963 0.2%
Waterbury 2 2,581 $239,100 1,963 2.3%
Westwood 3 1,282 $267,500 1,963 0.4%
Bloomfield-Allen 4 6,585 $140,700 4,561 3.4%
Magnolia Park 5 2,107 $127,400 5,451 10.4%
Beaverdale 6 8,215 $138,667 3,534 3.1%
Southwestern Hills 7 5,618 $177,857 2,355 4.9%
Lower Beaver 8 5,404 $145,429 4,193 2.5%
Merle Hay 9 9,524 $127,346 4,246 3.5%
Meredith 10 4,243 $138,967 3,857 3.4%
Waveland Park 11 3,041 $154,900 3,367 4.3%
Sherman Hill 12 1,585 $150,800 4,601 4.7%
Greater South Side 13 8,605 $125,838 4,652 4.0%
North Of Grand 14 2,748 $114,725 4,531 5.6%
South Park 15 2,578 $109,000 5,680 5.3%
Accent 16 3,332 $88,650 5,611 3.7%
Fairground 17 4,682 $81,817 6,599 10.6%
Drake 18 10,434 $109,177 5,453 5.6%
Oak Park 19 3,873 $90,625 5,890 5.0%
Fairmont Park 20 4,498 $109,662 5,410 4.4%
Jordan Park 21 2,189 $120,700 5,623 5.9%
Indianola Hills 22 5,609 $101,567 5,382 6.2%
Union Park 23 6,626 $95,650 5,924 6.6%
Capitol East 24 1,939 $64,133 7,452 12.6%
Mckinley School 25 1,718 $87,400 6,191 2.0%
King-Irving Park 26 2,669 $84,025 6,912 11.1%
Downtown Des Moines 27 2,484 $78,150 4,297 3.0%
Arbor Peaks 28 1,093 $123,933 4,619 6.6%
Woodland Heights 29 1,707 $113,475 5,200 8.8%
Martin Luther King Jr Park 30 2,674 $79,950 6,766 7.0%
Douglas Acres 31 3,306 $106,300 5,691 8.9%
Gray’S Woods 32 2,683 $105,933 5,933 9.2%
Highland Park 33 8,959 $91,075 6,090 7.9%
Mondamin Presidentia 34 1,675 $84,133 6,962 7.2%
Capitol Park 35 3,163 $77,800 6,927 9.3%
Cheatom Park 36 1,623 $77,100 6,701 6.5%
River Bend 37 2,892 $89,500 6,694 9.0%

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