How do you pick the best places to live in what many agree is the best darn state in the nation? If you do a survey, you’ll get opinions based on most likely, emotions.
That’s why we use science. After all, the data never lies.
After analyzing everything from weather and amenities to crime and education, we’ve come up with the following list as the best places to live in Kansas. Read on below to see how we calculated the results and where your hometown ranked. Hint: If you live in Johnson County, consider yourself lucky.
Here are the 10 best places to live in Kansas for 2019:
- Leawood (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Bel Aire (Homes For Sale)
- Overland Park (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Derby (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- McPherson (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Andover (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Colby (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Lenexa (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Olathe (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Mulvane (Photos | Homes For Sale)
Looking at the data, you can tell that anything within a 15-minute drive of Overland Park is the most desirable, according to science and data.
But as most Kansas residents would agree, almost every place here is awesome.
For more Kansas reading, check out:
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In Kansas
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Kansas
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In Kansas
The 10 Best Places To Live In Kansas For 2019
Leawood is by far one of the best places to live in Kansas: the math proves it! This city has the 14th lowest unemployment rate and the 1st highest median income in all of Kansas.
Plus, the median home values are the 1st highest in the state. And if all of that isn’t enough to convince you, then check this out: their crime rate is the 5th lowest in the state, making Leawood a safe and great place to live.
Bel Aire’s unemployment rates are some of the lowest in the state and the median income is the 4th highest, making Bel Aire a great place to work and settle down if you’re look for a stable job with a stable income.
Additionally, Bel Aire has above average education and low crime, making this place a safe place to live.
At an unemployment rate of 4.0%, everyone who wants a job can get one in Overland Park. And the residents command high salaries ($74,789 a year combined income), and live in big fancy homes ($237,100 each).
We’re not saying money is why these cities are the ‘best’ in Kansas. What we’re implying is that money means safety and peace of mind. And there’s nothing wrong with that.
Derby isn’t just the nicest place to live in Kansas – it’s also the one of the fastest growing places in the state. And with good reason.
It’s got the 10th lowest unemployment rate, the 11th highest adjusted income, and rates above most places in education.
When you’re looking at science and data, Derby definitely deserves a spot on the list for 2019.
Mcpherson comes in at a close 5th. They have the 5th lowest unemployment rate in the state and the 21st highest median income as well, which means the people in Mcpherson are working and getting paid well.
Additionally, the median home value is the 22nd best in the state.
Andover has a strong showing in our best places to live in Kansas analysis, coming it at 6th 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 Kansas, Andover is a great option.
Taking its place as the 7th best place in Kansas is Colby. Residents here earn a really high salary each year, and crime is fairly low, in comparison to the rest of Kansas.
It’s considered a cultural community, as it boasts an arts scene, and many ethnic restaurants, too. Which means you can’t be bored here.
An unemployment rate of only 2.2% helps thing too.
Lenexa is a cute little city where crime is far below the state average, and where it’s affordable. The schools are also solidly rated.
Home prices clock in at $232,400 and households earn a median salary of $78,798. One could get used to that.
The Town of Olathe consistently ranks as one of the best places to live. There aren’t any surprises here. Which probably adds credibility to our data, right?
Let’s see why Olathe ranks so high. First of all, the homes in Olathe are the 5th most expensive in the state of Kansas, with the average home worth a whopping $201,200. We’re not elitists, nor are we saying that big homes means a better place to live. But price reflects demand, and simply put, a lot of people want to live in Olathe if they can afford it.
Other numbers that stand out: Olathe residents have the 5th highest income in the state, and the 11th lowest crime numbers in Kansas.
Mulvane takes 10th place on our list of best places in Kansas for 2019 thanks to a strong showing in unemployment rate (6th overall) and things to do.
Mulvane 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 $125,900 at the median.
Mapping The Best And Worst Places To Live in Kansas
The Pressing Question: Size
Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Topeka with a population of 127,472 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 53 cities, 140 towns, and 412 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’.
You can see those two top tens at the bottom of the post.
How We Calculated The Best Cities To Live In Kansas
Now that we had our set of cities, it was time to rank them.
We ranked each place in Kansas across a number of criteria from one to 53, 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 Kansas”.
The criteria we looked at were:
- Median Home Values
- Median Income
- Population Density (Higher better)
- Unemployment Rate
- Commute Time
- Education Levels
- Health Insurance Coverage
- Poverty rates
After the dust settled, what was the best place to live in Kansas? That would be Leawood.
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 Kansas.
Otherwise, buckle up for a ride down good living lane with Leawood at the end of the cul-de-sac.
Wrapping Up The Best Places When It Comes To Living In Kansas
If you’re looking at areas in Kansas with the best economic situations, where there’s lower than average crime, and a lot to do, this is an accurate list.
Leawood made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for the best place to live in Kansas for 2019.
Best Towns To Live In Kansas
- Mission Hills (Pop. 3,582)
- Westwood (Pop. 1,747)
- Victoria (Pop. 1,316)
- Fairway (Pop. 3,964)
- Lindsborg (Pop. 3,417)
- St. Marys (Pop. 2,793)
- Silver Lake (Pop. 1,659)
- North Newton (Pop. 1,901)
- Rose Hill (Pop. 3,915)
- Colwich (Pop. 1,305)
Best Small Towns To Live In Kansas
- Westwood Hills (Pop. 414)
- Maple Hill (Pop. 695)
- Tipton (Pop. 255)
- Spearville (Pop. 964)
- Glen Elder (Pop. 521)
- Lake Quivira (Pop. 987)
- Eastborough (Pop. 742)
- Assaria (Pop. 471)
- Andale (Pop. 790)
- Willowbrook (Pop. 94)
If you’re curious enough, here are the worst places to live in Kansas according to the data:
- Parsons (Pop. 10,111)
- Independence (Pop. 9,084)
- Coffeyville (Pop. 9,796)
For more Kansas reading, check out:
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In Kansas
- 10 Safest Places In Kansas
- 10 Worst Places To Live In Kansas