Best Small Towns In New Mexico For 2020


We used science and data to determine which small towns in New Mexico are the best of the best.

This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. This is our sixth time ranking the best small places to live in New Mexico.

You’ve seen these lists before: Best places to live in New Mexico, Most Beautiful Downtowns, etc., etc. But all of them focus on major cities and towns in the Land of Enchantment and no one pays attention to the little guy.

Well, that’s all about to change as we put together a list of the best small towns in New Mexico based on numbers–not opinions or hearsay.

We’ll dive right into our methodology in the next section; but first, we thought you might just want to know which places in New Mexico ranked the based–you know, based on science.

Before we get to the top 15, here’s a look at the 10 Best Small Towns To Live in New Mexico for 2020.

What’s the best small town in New Mexico? Sandia Heights is the best small town in New Mexico based on the most recent Census data. If you live in one of these small towns like Sandia Heights, chances are, you’re not surprised. After all, you know how great you have it.

But for the rest of you–keep reading and we’ll get to just why these small towns made our list.

For more reading on the Land of Enchantment check out:

The 15 Best Small Towns In New Mexico For 2020

Overall SnackAbility

7.5
/10

Population: 3,366
Median Income: $107,898 (1st Best)
Median Home Value: $442,900 (1st Best)
More on Sandia Heights: Data | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,497
Median Income: $97,917 (2nd Best)
Median Home Value: $229,800 (7th Best)
More on La Huerta: Data | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 2,091
Median Income: $67,500 (6th Best)
Median Home Value: $188,900 (16th Best)
More on San Ysidro: Data | Homes For Sale

Mesilla, NM

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 2,138
Median Income: $46,406 (31st Best)
Median Home Value: $230,300 (6th Best)
More on Mesilla: PhotosData | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 2,460
Median Income: $41,949 (39th Best)
Median Home Value: $288,500 (2nd Best)
More on Ranchos De Taos: Data | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 1,088
Median Income: $51,932 (17th Best)
Median Home Value: $217,800 (10th Best)
More on El Rancho: Data | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 2,172
Median Income: $51,250 (18th Best)
Median Home Value: $254,500 (4th Best)
More on Tome: Data | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 1,566
Median Income: $87,143 (3rd Best)
Median Home Value: $176,400 (20th Best)
More on Sandia Knolls: Data | Homes For Sale

Bosque Farms, NM

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 3,827
Median Income: $50,227 (22nd Best)
Median Home Value: $207,400 (13th Best)
More on Bosque Farms: PhotosData | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 1,724
Median Income: $53,365 (14th Best)
Median Home Value: $217,100 (11th Best)
More on Carnuel: Data | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,668
Median Income: $48,173 (26th Best)
Median Home Value: $135,000 (33rd Best)
More on Las Maravillas: Data | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,366
Median Income: $38,417 (48th Best)
Median Home Value: $137,900 (31st Best)
More on Elephant Butte: Data | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 2,959
Median Income: $42,290 (38th Best)
Median Home Value: $180,700 (18th Best)
More on Agua Fria: Data | Homes For Sale

Tularosa, NM

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 2,931
Median Income: $41,086 (41st Best)
Median Home Value: $108,700 (44th Best)
More on Tularosa: PhotosData | Homes For Sale

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 1,057
Median Income: $53,472 (13th Best)
Median Home Value: $254,800 (3rd Best)
More on Ponderosa Pine: Data | Homes For Sale

How We Determined The Coolest Towns In New Mexico

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent data from the Census’s 2014-2018 American Community Survey and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is the criteria we used:

  • Population Density (Higher is better)
  • Lowest Unemployment Rates
  • Housing costs (Higher is better. More demand.)
  • Adjusted Median Income (Higher is better)
  • Highly Educated Adults (Higher is better)
  • Insurance Rates (Higher is better)
  • Commute Times (Lower is better)

We looked at places with populations lower than 5,000 people and greater than 1,000, of which, there were a lot – 81 to be exact.

We then ranked each place in each category with scores from 1 to 81, averaged them out, and the lowest scores went to our Best Small Towns in New Mexico. Top of that list — Sandia Heights. You can download the data here.

Keep reading to find out more about our top 15 best small towns in New Mexico.

Science Can Tackle Any Issue, Even Small Ones

We said it once and we’ll say it again — this list: it’s just science. We did the research, we crunched the numbers, and it turns out, these 15 small towns in New Mexico are the best, in which to live.

And who can argue with that?

If you’re curious, here are the worst small towns in New Mexico:

  1. Thoreau
  2. Monterey Park
  3. Meadow Lake

For more new mexico reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Small Towns In New Mexico

Rank City Population Median Income Median Home Value
1 Sandia Heights, NM 3,366 $107,898.0 $442,900.0
2 La Huerta, NM 1,497 $97,917.0 $229,800.0
3 San Ysidro, NM 2,091 $67,500.0 $188,900.0
4 Mesilla, NM 2,138 $46,406.0 $230,300.0
5 Ranchos De Taos, NM 2,460 $41,949.0 $288,500.0
6 El Rancho, NM 1,088 $51,932.0 $217,800.0
7 Tome, NM 2,172 $51,250.0 $254,500.0
8 Sandia Knolls, NM 1,566 $87,143.0 $176,400.0
9 Bosque Farms, NM 3,827 $50,227.0 $207,400.0
10 Carnuel, NM 1,724 $53,365.0 $217,100.0
11 Las Maravillas, NM 1,668 $48,173.0 $135,000.0
12 Elephant Butte, NM 1,366 $38,417.0 $137,900.0
13 Agua Fria, NM 2,959 $42,290.0 $180,700.0
14 Tularosa, NM 2,931 $41,086.0 $108,700.0
15 Ponderosa Pine, NM 1,057 $53,472.0 $254,800.0
16 Hurley, NM 1,439 $39,938.0 $84,900.0
17 El Cerro, NM 2,507 $69,792.0 $202,800.0
18 Peralta, NM 3,577 $51,169.0 $194,900.0
19 Eunice, NM 3,059 $64,423.0 $91,100.0
20 La Cienega, NM 3,526 $60,100.0 $221,300.0
21 La Puebla, NM 1,005 $37,697.0 $177,300.0
22 Pojoaque, NM 2,018 $48,036.0 $156,500.0
23 Bayard, NM 2,419 $34,177.0 $82,800.0
24 Arenas Valley, NM 1,647 $46,809.0 $174,500.0
25 Spencerville, NM 1,746 $54,939.0 $130,700.0
26 Fairacres, NM 1,309 $51,161.0 $142,200.0
27 Santa Rosa, NM 3,426 $27,273.0 $85,400.0
28 San Pablo, NM 1,046 $49,458.0 $223,800.0
29 Nambe, NM 1,814 $45,688.0 $245,600.0
30 Jarales, NM 2,060 $42,500.0 $148,500.0
31 West Hammond, NM 2,787 $70,057.0 $168,000.0
32 Capitan, NM 1,441 $38,188.0 $155,300.0
33 Flora Vista, NM 1,799 $52,344.0 $183,700.0
34 Valencia, NM 1,826 $36,544.0 $137,700.0
35 Waterflow, NM 1,769 $60,865.0 $158,300.0
36 Questa, NM 2,019 $34,939.0 $114,500.0
37 Santa Clara, NM 1,783 $28,646.0 $80,500.0
38 El Valle De Arroyo Seco, NM 1,721 $48,667.0 $164,000.0
39 Clayton, NM 3,104 $35,703.0 $75,800.0
40 Radium Springs, NM 1,731 $47,829.0 $89,700.0
41 Milan, NM 3,636 $40,855.0 $73,000.0
42 Dexter, NM 1,091 $27,958.0 $88,900.0
43 Texico, NM 1,229 $42,891.0 $85,400.0
44 Loving, NM 1,212 $38,558.0 $91,300.0
45 San Miguel, NM 1,054 $50,511.0 $98,100.0
46 Boles Acres, NM 1,899 $47,702.0 $97,500.0
47 Jal, NM 2,032 $56,453.0 $67,600.0
48 San Rafael, NM 1,251 $64,577.0 $79,900.0
49 Sausal, NM 1,944 $36,170.0 $164,300.0
50 Tucumcari, NM 4,958 $23,486.0 $52,500.0
51 Moriarty, NM 2,223 $31,974.0 $103,900.0
52 Estancia, NM 1,643 $30,875.0 $115,500.0
53 Indian Hills, NM 1,105 $52,750.0 $134,800.0
54 La Luz, NM 1,472 $31,215.0 $80,300.0
55 Fort Sumner, NM 1,228 $27,473.0 $47,900.0
56 Ruidoso Downs, NM 2,597 $20,863.0 $124,800.0
57 Dulce, NM 2,663 $41,250.0 $85,300.0
58 Hatch, NM 1,489 $32,596.0 $78,800.0
59 Pecos, NM 1,594 $30,417.0 $152,800.0
60 Vado, NM 2,579 $35,322.0 $116,800.0
61 Lordsburg, NM 2,539 $33,945.0 $69,200.0
62 Jemez Pueblo, NM 2,031 $37,500.0 $114,000.0
63 Taos Pueblo, NM 1,518 $28,393.0 $214,500.0
64 El Cerro Mission, NM 4,734 $38,525.0 $75,300.0
65 Keeler Farm, NM 1,804 $40,478.0 $74,400.0
66 Upper Fruitland, NM 1,672 $48,802.0 $52,300.0
67 Santo Domingo Pueblo, NM 2,379 $33,000.0 $116,400.0
68 Berino, NM 1,610 $24,522.0 $68,300.0
69 Crownpoint, NM 2,500 $42,404.0 $63,400.0
70 Columbus, NM 1,165 $20,000.0 $65,400.0
71 Black Rock, NM 1,684 $27,955.0 $65,500.0
72 Laguna, NM 1,151 $44,327.0 $70,600.0
73 San Felipe Pueblo, NM 2,194 $39,083.0 $126,600.0
74 Skyline-Ganipa, NM 1,208 $44,479.0 $66,900.0
75 Mcintosh, NM 1,089 $18,587.0 $115,800.0
76 Navajo, NM 1,498 $17,102.0 $47,300.0
77 Mescalero, NM 1,361 $32,829.0 $43,300.0
78 Twin Lakes, NM 1,008 $31,771.0 $37,500.0
79 Meadow Lake, NM 4,253 $26,398.0 $67,800.0
80 Monterey Park, NM 1,493 $18,799.0 $41,600.0
81 Thoreau, NM 1,666 $19,453.0 $50,700.0

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.

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