10 Best Places To Live In Alabama For 2019


We looked at 569 places in the Heart of Dixie to find the cream of the crop.

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2019. This is our fifth time ranking the best places to live in Alabama.

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Sweet Home Alabama is a pretty fitting saying for a state that surpasses most other Southern states for its beauty and all-around charm.

When you have the Gulf Shores and the Talladega National Forests in your backyard, it's quite a super place to live.

But where is the best place to live in Alabama? That's what we set to find out based on the most recent FBI and Census data.

Using science, we analyzed everything from crime, education, weather and amount of income per household to find out, once and for all, the best cities to make a home in the Yellowhammer State. Apparently, living in the greater Birmingham region is a little slice of heaven.

And since Alabama is one of the cheapest states to live in America, you'll definitely be able to afford a great place to live.

After analyzing almost 101 places, we came up with this list as the top ten places to live in Alabama. So grab some fried catfish and bbq and read on.

What's the best place to live in Alabama for 2019? According to the most recent FBI and Census data, Mountain Brook ranks as the best place to live in Alabama for 2019 based on general quality of life factors.

It seems that none of the largest cities in Alabama made the top ten, but their suburbs are apparently more desirable, according to scientific data.

No one can argue that, overall, almost every nook and cranny in Alabama has something special and awesome about it.

If you're looking for something more national, check out the best states in America or the best places to live in America.

For more Alabama reading, check out:

The 10 Best Places To Live In Alabama For 2019

Mountain Brook, AL

Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 20,532
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $557,300 (1st best)
Unemployment Rate: 1.9% (1st best)
More on Mountain Brook: Real Estate | Data | Photos

With the unemployment rate being the 1st lowest in Alabama and very stable household median incomes, it's easy to see why someone would want to live in Mountain Brook.

Plus, the crime rate is the 5th lowest in the state!

Vestavia Hills, AL

Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 34,243
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $346,600 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 2.5% (3rd best)
More on Vestavia Hills: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Vestavia Hills is just about as close to a perfect area as you can get. Residents here are gainfully employed, and the schools are some of the best in the state. It's safe, and residents get to enjoy the benefits of quality at home living.

It's quite a gem tucked away in Alabama.

Madison, AL

Overall SnackAbility

7.5
/10

Population: 46,396
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $233,600 (10th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.1% (23rd best)
More on Madison: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Madison has some of the most employed as well as the highest earning residents in the entire state of Alabama. Factor in a very low crime rate, and this Madison is a real gem.

With high incomes comes a high cost of living, which can been seen in the home prices. Additionally, the commute time for Madison residents to work is significantly higher than average.

Homewood, AL

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 25,652
Rank Last Year: 17 (Up 13)
Median Home Value: $299,100 (3rd best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.2% (8th best)
More on Homewood: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Homewood has a strong showing in our best places to live in Alabama analysis, coming it at 4th best.

It ranks highly like many others in the top ten for a low unemployment rate and high adjusted median income. It scored extra points relative to the top ten for its size and things to do.

If you're thinking of moving to Alabama, Homewood is a great option.

Helena, AL

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 17,630
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $185,000 (14th best)
Unemployment Rate: 2.9% (6th best)
More on Helena: Real Estate | Data | Photos

When you're looking at the best places you could live in Alabama, Helena came in 5th. Let's see why.

It has a low unemployment rate and high incomes.

Plus, Helena has an impressive history for a place of just over 17,630 people. The median home costs a cool $185,000 and households make $84,888 which is good for 6th in Alabama.

Hoover, AL

Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 84,100
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 3)
Median Home Value: $268,100 (4th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.1% (13th best)
More on Hoover: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Who wouldn't want to live in a place where there's low crime and everyone is rich? That's the case with Hoover.

Things are looking peachy keen here. The unemployment rate is the 13th lowest in Alabama and the median income comes in at $78,056.

This is the kind of place you brag to your friends on Facebook about.

Review Of Hoover by HomeSnacks User

Hoover is a suburban community just outside the city of Birmingham. Crime is low, schools are consistently rated in Best Schools in America lists and there are many recreational options nearby, including many parks. Plenty of shopping from high-end to budget-friendly available. Residents take pride in their neighborhoods. Some neighborhoods are cookie-cutter, but homes and lawns are maintained well and there is no littering or trash in public spaces. Its a small and safe place to live!

Oak Mountain is a favorite. You can hike, swim, fish, camp or go to a concert at the outdoor theater venue. Hoover is in a great location, so you have easy access to museums, botanical gardens, historic movie theaters, shopping, and the airport. Hoover has grown rapidly and the roadways havent kept up, so traffic is an inevitable frustration. Popular stores and restaurants seem to be on side of town and creates a lot of congestion. There is a lot of open space in the city, so building places in other parts of town would help.

Southside, AL

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 8,563
Rank Last Year: 7 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $153,400 (26th best)
Unemployment Rate: 2.6% (4th best)
More on Southside: Real Estate | Data | Photos

In Southside, everyone loves to call Southside home! The median home value is the 26th highest in Alabama.

Additionally, the unemployment rate is the 4th lowest in the state. and the crime rates are some of the lowest in Heart of Dixie.

Fairhope, AL

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 17,996
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $243,900 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.1% (23rd best)
More on Fairhope: Real Estate | Data | Photos

If you want to live in Alabama, you can't go wrong if you decide to make the Fairhope area your home. However, everyone and their mother wants to live here.

Can you blame them? It's a beautiful place with really low crime, where a majority of residents are wealthy (a $61,723 median income will do that).

Plus, the residents are really involved with helping to make Fairhope as great as possible. You can't get it much better than in Fairhope.

Review Of Fairhope by HomeSnacks User

This town is a very quaint and peaceful town. The downtown area is very friendly with lots of food and shopping options. The pier and bay area is a very nice place to take an evening walk and watch the most beautiful sunsets over the bay.

Bone and Barrel has the best food on Fairhope, Avenue. There's also a very good ice cream shop called Mr. Gene's Beans and several good coffee shops in the area.

Daphne, AL

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 24,295
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 3)
Median Home Value: $184,600 (15th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.7% (28th best)
More on Daphne: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The crime is the 12th lowest in the state in Daphne, and there were only 35 violent crimes in the entire city last year. We think it's even safer here than the numbers indicate.

The schools are some of the best in Alabama, and residents live in very expensive homes. They also earn more than most every other city in the state. Residents in Daphne earn $61,508 a year.

Northport, AL

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 24,544
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $162,400 (22nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.8% (31st best)
More on Northport: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Northport takes 10th place on our list of best places in Alabama for 2019 thanks to a strong showing in unemployment rate (31st overall) and things to do.

Northport is no stranger to top ten lists, being named one of the best places to live in the country by multiple outlets over the past ten years. And that tends to happen when home prices hit $162,400 at the median.

Mapping The Best And Worst Places To Live in Alabama

The Pressing Question: Size

Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Montgomery with a population of 201,717 against places with a population of 18?

We firmly decided no, that just isn't fair.

So to create our ranking, we broke places to live into three tiers:

  • Cities -- Populations over 5,000
  • Towns -- Populations between 1,000 and 5,000
  • Small Towns -- Populations below 1,000

This left us with 101 cities, 198 towns, and 214 small towns.

We then decided, no matter how much anyone loves their town, the best places have more of everything and therefore you need to have over 5,000 people to truly be 'the best'.

Now we also realize that city living might not be your cup of tea, so we ran the following analysis on towns and then again for small towns.

You can see those two top tens at the bottom of the post.

How We Calculated The Best Cities To Live In Alabama

Now that we had our set of cities, it was time to rank them.

We ranked each place in Alabama across a number of criteria from one to 101, with one being the best.

We then took the average rank across all criteria, with the city posting the lowest overall score being crowned the winner of the title "Best Place To Live In Alabama".

The criteria we looked at were:

  • Median Home Values
  • Median Income
  • Population Density (Higher better)
  • Unemployment Rate
  • Commute Time
  • Crime
  • Education Levels
  • Health Insurance Coverage
  • Poverty rates

Sources of criteria include the New Census Data and FBI Crime Data.

After the dust settled, what was the best place to live in Alabama? That would be Mountain Brook.

If your city or town isn't among the top 10, jump down to the bottom of the post to see a detailed chart of the best places in Alabama.

Otherwise, buckle up for a ride down good living lane with Mountain Brook at the end of the cul-de-sac.

Wrapping Up The Best Places When It Comes To Living In Alabama

If you're looking at areas in Alabama with the best economic situations, where there's lower than average crime, and a lot to do, this is an accurate list.

Mountain Brook made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for the best place to live in Alabama for 2019.

Best Towns To Live In Alabama

  1. Highland Lakes (Pop. 4,860)
  2. Indian Springs Village (Pop. 2,529)
  3. Lake View (Pop. 2,801)
  4. Priceville (Pop. 3,060)
  5. Mount Olive CDP (Jefferson (Pop. 4,237)
  6. Kimberly (Pop. 2,840)
  7. Shoal Creek (Pop. 1,448)
  8. Blue Ridge (Pop. 1,414)
  9. Trinity (Pop. 2,110)
  10. Springville (Pop. 4,199)

Best Small Towns To Live In Alabama

  1. Stockton (Pop. 687)
  2. Mooresville (Pop. 69)
  3. Sweet Water (Pop. 332)
  4. Lowndesboro (Pop. 95)
  5. Magnolia Springs (Pop. 740)
  6. McIntosh (Pop. 339)
  7. Eunola (Pop. 362)
  8. St. Florian (Pop. 429)
  9. Coker (Pop. 817)
  10. Grant (Pop. 961)

If you're curious enough, here are the worst places to live in Alabama according to the data:

  1. Anniston (Pop. 22,441)
  2. Bessemer (Pop. 26,856)
  3. Prichard (Pop. 22,340)

For more Alabama reading, check out:

Where Are The Best Places To Live In Alabama?

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
1 Mountain Brook 20,532 1.9% $557,300
2 Vestavia Hills 34,243 2.5% $346,600
3 Madison 46,396 5.1% $233,600
4 Homewood 25,652 3.2% $299,100
5 Helena 17,630 2.9% $185,000
6 Hoover 84,100 4.1% $268,100
7 Southside 8,563 2.6% $153,400
8 Fairhope 17,996 5.1% $243,900
9 Daphne 24,295 5.7% $184,600
10 Northport 24,544 5.8% $162,400

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.

4 thoughts on “10 Best Places To Live In Alabama For 2019

  1. Strange that Huntsville is rated as the 7th best places to live in the intire US but didn’t make your top 10 list. Give me a break.

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