These Are The 10 Best Phoenix Suburbs For 2018

We analyzed over 20 places around Phoenix to identify the most in demand places to live.

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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 Phoenix are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado…

Here are the 10 best suburbs around Phoenix for 2018:

  1. Paradise Valley (Photos | Homes)
  2. Carefree (Photos | Homes)
  3. Litchfield Park (Photos | Homes)
  4. Fountain Hills (Photos | Homes)
  5. Gilbert (Photos | Homes)
  6. Scottsdale (Photos | Homes)
  7. Goodyear (Photos | Homes)
  8. Goodyear (Photos | Homes)
  9. Chandler (Photos | Homes)
  10. Cave Creek (Photos | Homes)

If you happen to be a resident of Paradise Valley, you’re probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

We’ll tell you what makes each of these 10 Phoenix ‘burbs better than the rest–but first, a bit about our methodology.

For more Arizona reading, check out:

Editor’s Note: If you see a slight difference between the best in state rankings and this suburb ranking, it’s because of the methodology. We needed a way to include more places, so we eliminated crime and commute times as criteria for this analysis.

How We Determined The Best Suburbs Around Phoenix for 2018

Figuring out the best ‘burbs around Phoenix 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 (2012-2016) to research each suburb.

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

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 3,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 20 suburbs to evaluate around Phoenix.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 20 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 Phoenix.” We’re lookin’ at you, Paradise Valley.

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.

1. Paradise Valley

Paradise Valley, Arizona

Population: 13,833
Unemployment Rate: 2.4%
Median Home Price: $1,332,600
Median Income: $173,487
More on Paradise Valley: Real Estate | Data

Paradise Valley is always mentioned as one of the best suburbs in the Phoenix area. We’ll tell you the good about “Awesome Paradise Valley.”

Everyone here is rich; families average $173,487 a year, which is the 1st highest in the Phoenix region. And only 2.4% are out of work. Homes average more than $1,332,600 each.

2. Carefree

Carefree, Arizona

Population: 3,580
Unemployment Rate: 3.0%
Median Home Price: $645,800
Median Income: $91,979
More on Carefree: Real Estate | Data

Carefree is the second best ‘burb we looked at near Phoenix for 2018.

It ranks 2nd for incomes in the area and only 4.3% of residents lack insurance, good for 2nd best.

3. Litchfield Park

Litchfield Park, Arizona

Source: Public domain

Population: 5,449
Unemployment Rate: 4.9%
Median Home Price: $279,100
Median Income: $79,821
More on Litchfield Park: Real Estate | Data

Here in Litchfield Park, it’s really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you’ll see in the Phoenix 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 Litchfield Park.

4. Fountain Hills

Fountain Hills, Arizona

Population: 23,863
Unemployment Rate: 4.9%
Median Home Price: $361,000
Median Income: $75,297
More on Fountain Hills: Real Estate | Data

Fountain Hills ranks as the 4th best suburb of Phoenix for 2018.

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

5. Gilbert

Gilbert, Arizona

Population: 226,832
Unemployment Rate: 5.4%
Median Home Price: $264,700
Median Income: $85,581
More on Gilbert: Real Estate | Data

Coming in as the fifth best is Gilbert.

Gilbert gets kudos for having the 8th most expensive homes in the Phoenix area, where houses sell for an average of $264,700. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

6. Scottsdale

Scottsdale, Arizona

Population: 234,495
Unemployment Rate: 4.9%
Median Home Price: $405,500
Median Income: $76,543
More on Scottsdale: Real Estate | Data

Scottsdale 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 4.9% which is 6th best in the area.

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

7. Goodyear

Goodyear, Arizona

Population: 72,629
Unemployment Rate: 4.2%
Median Home Price: $235,200
Median Income: $74,417
More on Goodyear: Real Estate | Data

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

Goodyear 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 27.1 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

8. Goodyear

Goodyear, Arizona

Population: 72,629
Unemployment Rate: 4.2%
Median Home Price: $235,200
Median Income: $74,417
More on Goodyear: Real Estate | Data

Goodyear 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 8.6% of people lack insurance, good for 9th in the area.

9. Chandler

Chandler, Arizona

Population: 242,131
Unemployment Rate: 5.0%
Median Home Price: $248,500
Median Income: $74,329
More on Chandler: Real Estate | Data

Is ‘Everything Better In Chandler?’


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.

10. Cave Creek

Cave Creek, Arizona

Population: 5,275
Unemployment Rate: 8.7%
Median Home Price: $453,300
Median Income: $82,095
More on Cave Creek: Real Estate | Data

And rounding out the top ten for 2018 is Cave Creek.

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.

Welcome to the Best Phoenix ‘Burbs of 2018

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 Phoenix, but don’t want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might just be for you.

For more Arizona reading , check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Phoenix Suburbs

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Median Home Price Median Income
1 Paradise Valley 13,833 2.4% $1,332,600 $173,487
2 Carefree 3,580 3.0% $645,800 $91,979
3 Litchfield Park 5,449 4.9% $279,100 $79,821
4 Fountain Hills 23,863 4.9% $361,000 $75,297
5 Gilbert 226,832 5.4% $264,700 $85,581
6 Scottsdale 234,495 4.9% $405,500 $76,543
7 Goodyear 72,629 4.2% $235,200 $74,417
8 Goodyear 72,629 4.2% $235,200 $74,417
9 Chandler 242,131 5.0% $248,500 $74,329
10 Cave Creek 5,275 8.7% $453,300 $82,095
11 Santa Cruz 63,310 8.5% $707,600 $62,471
12 Peoria 158,677 6.4% $208,200 $66,163
13 Surprise 127,492 7.8% $197,600 $61,035
14 Tempe 174,708 6.0% $219,900 $50,474
15 Mesa 470,456 6.9% $168,500 $50,615
16 Avondale 80,631 6.9% $160,600 $56,120
17 Glendale 239,943 7.2% $163,400 $46,817
18 El Mirage 33,937 7.6% $124,800 $49,504
19 Guadalupe 6,172 15.4% $82,200 $30,326
20 Tolleson 6,985 7.0% $154,500 $39,714

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