These Are The 10 Best Phoenix Suburbs For 2019

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

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Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2019. This is our fourth time ranking the best Phoenix 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 Phoenix are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado…

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.

Or feel free to check out some more reading about Arizona:

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 2019

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 (2013-2017) 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 22 suburbs to evaluate around Phoenix.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 22 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.

Paradise Valley, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 13,961
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $175,673
Unemployment Rate: 2.6%
Poverty Rate: 5.8%
More on Paradise Valley: Real Estate | Data | Photos

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 $175,673 a year, which is the 1st highest in the Phoenix region. And only 2.6% are out of work. Homes average more than $1,406,700 each.

Carefree, AZ

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Population: 3,657
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Income: $95,992
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 8.5%
More on Carefree: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Carefree is the second best ‘burb we looked at near Phoenix for 2019.

It ranks 2nd for incomes in the area and only 2.7% of residents lack insurance, good for 2nd best.

Gilbert, AZ

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Population: 232,176
Rank Last Year: 5 (Up 2)
Median Income: $87,566
Unemployment Rate: 4.7%
Poverty Rate: 5.9%
More on Gilbert: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Here in Gilbert, 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 Gilbert.

Scottsdale, AZ

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Population: 239,283
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 2)
Median Income: $80,306
Unemployment Rate: 4.1%
Poverty Rate: 8.9%
More on Scottsdale: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Scottsdale ranks as the 4th best suburb of Phoenix for 2019.

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

Fountain Hills, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 24,047
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 1)
Median Income: $76,729
Unemployment Rate: 5.8%
Poverty Rate: 4.9%
More on Fountain Hills: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Coming in as the fifth best is Fountain Hills.

Fountain Hills gets kudos for having the 6th most expensive homes in the Phoenix area, where houses sell for an average of $387,800. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Litchfield Park, AZ

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 5,686
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 3)
Median Income: $77,917
Unemployment Rate: 5.6%
Poverty Rate: 9.7%
More on Litchfield Park: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Litchfield Park 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 5.6% which is 10th best in the area.

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

Chandler, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 245,160
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 2)
Median Income: $77,278
Unemployment Rate: 4.6%
Poverty Rate: 9.1%
More on Chandler: Real Estate | Data | Photos

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

Chandler 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 24.1 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

Cave Creek, AZ

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Population: 5,423
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 2)
Median Income: $91,500
Unemployment Rate: 7.6%
Poverty Rate: 7.5%
More on Cave Creek: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Cave Creek 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 8.0% of people lack insurance, good for 9th in the area.

9. Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz Location In California

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 63,993
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 2)
Median Income: $65,421
Unemployment Rate: 8.3%
Poverty Rate: 24.4%
More on Santa Cruz: Real Estate

Is ‘Everything Better In Santa Cruz?’


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.

Goodyear, AZ

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 74,953
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 3)
Median Income: $77,930
Unemployment Rate: 3.9%
Poverty Rate: 8.7%
More on Goodyear: Real Estate | Data | Photos

And rounding out the top ten for 2019 is Goodyear.

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 2019

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 Median Income
1 Paradise Valley 13,961 $175,673
2 Carefree 3,657 $95,992
3 Gilbert 232,176 $87,566
4 Scottsdale 239,283 $80,306
5 Fountain Hills 24,047 $76,729
6 Litchfield Park 5,686 $77,917
7 Chandler 245,160 $77,278
8 Cave Creek 5,423 $91,500
9 Santa Cruz 63,993 $65,421
10 Goodyear 74,953 $77,930
11 Goodyear 74,953 $77,930
12 Goodyear 74,953 $77,930
13 Goodyear 74,953 $77,930
14 Peoria 161,383 $69,589
15 Tempe 178,339 $51,829
16 Surprise 129,534 $62,927
17 Mesa 479,317 $52,155
18 Avondale 81,590 $56,585
19 Glendale 241,543 $49,383
20 El Mirage 34,400 $51,915
21 Tolleson 7,052 $40,846
22 Guadalupe 6,270 $28,491

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