10 Best Places To Live In Maryland For 2019


These are the cream of the crop when it comes to living in the Old Line State.

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

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There's nothing crabby about Maryland except for maybe their "all you can eat blue crab specials". The people here are super nice and some of the best places in America are nestled inside Maryland's Mid-Atlantic borders.

And, you don't have to do a Google scavenger hunt to find them. HomeSnacks has used science to create a list of the top ten best places in Maryland for 2019. We looked at 37 places and rated them according to median home prices, median household incomes, education, and safety.

The competition was fierce to say the least. Our top ten best places really brought their A-game. We can thank some of Maryland's best places for Marriott Hotels, The Discovery Channel, and Perdue Farms. And we can thank the other half for higher education institutions like John Hopkins and University of Maryland for educating the future of those companies.

Whether you want to be a Chesapeake Bay crabber, a Potomac Housewife, or you just want to live like Maryland royalty, there's a place on our top ten list for you.

Have we peaked your curiosity? If so, head on down to our list of the top ten best places to live in The Old Line State.

All great jobs and super smart Marylanders aside, the best places on our list are the best because the people in these places take affordable homes, high incomes, and safe neighborhoods very seriously.

However, there can only be one number one best place to live in Maryland. What is the best place to live in Maryland? According to the data we looked at, that would be Hampstead. We are not at all surprised. Hampstead has great people, amazing parks, gold star restaurants, and great shopping.

To see Maryland's other best of the best places, take a look below. And if you don't find it there, head to the bottom.

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 Maryland reading, check out:

The 10 Best Places To Live In Maryland For 2019

Hampstead, MD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 6,352
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $234,800 (23rd best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.3% (5th best)
More on Hampstead: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Things can't get much better than in the town of Hampstead. The crime is the 1st lowest in the entire state, and the residents who live in Hampstead make huge salaries, and almost all of them have great jobs.

The median home costs a cool $234,800 and households make $80,313 which is good for 10th in Maryland.

Rockville, MD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

7.5
/10

Population: 65,171
Rank Last Year: 3 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $499,400 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.9% (7th best)
More on Rockville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Rockville has a long and illustrious history and its ranking in the top ten of our best places to live is just another notch in its belt.\n\Rockville had the 5th highest household median income adjusted for cost of living at $101,774.

Not to mention that its residents have plenty to do on the weekends.

Bowie, MD

Overall SnackAbility

9.5
/10

Population: 57,633
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $303,900 (10th best)
Unemployment Rate: 6.8% (19th best)
More on Bowie: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The Bowie has the 19th lowest unemployment rate in Maryland. The population growth here has been 8% over the last 15 years, meaning a lot of people want to live here. If they can afford it; the cost of living in Bowie is higher than the national average and households make $106,098 per year.

We'd move to Bowie if we could in a heart beat.

Poolesville, MD

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 5,108
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 5)
Median Home Value: $391,600 (3rd best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.6% (2nd best)
More on Poolesville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Poolesville 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 Maryland.

Walkersville, MD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 5,989
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $304,200 (9th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.2% (4th best)
More on Walkersville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Walkersville takes 5th place on our list of best places in Maryland for 2019 thanks to a strong showing in unemployment rate (4th overall) and things to do.

Walkersville 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 $304,200 at the median.

Mount Airy, MD

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 9,376
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $351,300 (6th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.9% (7th best)
More on Mount Airy: Real Estate | Data | Photos

If you don't have a job in Mount Airy, you're most likely not trying very hard. The unemployment rate here is almost as low as you can get -- 4.9%. In fact, there are probably enough butler and landscaping jobs available here to put every single unemployed resident to work, what with a median income of $108,578.

That's actually not a bad idea...

La Plata, MD

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 9,059
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $320,600 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.4% (1st best)
More on La Plata: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Well, I guess technically 3.4% of La Plata residents who want to have a job can't find one, so not everyone has a job, but it's the 1st closest of any city in Maryland.

You can tell they take business seriously as they have by far the coolest Chamber of Commerce website we came across in our research.

In addition to its incredibly low unemployment rate, La Plata also ranked well for crime (22nd) and median income ($87,759).

Thurmont, MD

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 6,435
Rank Last Year: 13 (Up 5)
Median Home Value: $238,800 (21st best)
Unemployment Rate: 8.7% (29th best)
More on Thurmont: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Taking a similar route to the top ten as many others on this list, Thurmont ranked highly for adjusted median income (14th), crime (3rd), and unemployment (29th).

With a population of 6,435 it was one of the smaller in the top ten and its government website actually goes to pains to say that it's a "community though not a city".

But don't listen to what they say people of Thurmont, you can be anything you want.

Cheverly, MD

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 6,390
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 3)
Median Home Value: $297,100 (11th best)
Unemployment Rate: 8.8% (30th best)
More on Cheverly: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Little Cheverly has it made. It has the 30th lowest unemployment rate, and crime is far below average for Maryland.

Residents here have great jobs, and the home price proves it's a highly desirable location in the state, for those who can afford the high cost of living

We'd recommend you start saving up!

Takoma Park, MD

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 17,567
Rank Last Year: 16 (Up 6)
Median Home Value: $508,600 (1st best)
Unemployment Rate: 7.7% (24th best)
More on Takoma Park: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Takoma Park 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 $508,600 and households earn a median salary of $78,921. One could get used to that.

Mapping The Best And Worst Places To Live in Maryland

The Pressing Question: Size

Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Annapolis with a population of 39,009 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 37 cities, 120 towns, and 139 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 Maryland

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

We ranked each place in Maryland across a number of criteria from one to 37, 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 Maryland".

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 Maryland? That would be Hampstead.

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 Maryland.

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

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

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

Hampstead made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for the best place to live in Maryland for 2019.

Best Towns To Live In Maryland

  1. Chevy Chase Village (Pop. 2,030)
  2. Chevy Chase (Pop. 2,948)
  3. Somerset (Pop. 1,215)
  4. Brookmont (Pop. 3,810)
  5. Garrett Park (Pop. 1,058)
  6. Cabin John (Pop. 1,958)
  7. Kensington (Pop. 2,111)
  8. Middletown (Pop. 4,460)
  9. Herald Harbor (Pop. 2,620)
  10. Friendship Heights Village (Pop. 4,730)

Best Small Towns To Live In Maryland

  1. Martin's Additions (Pop. 912)
  2. Chevy Chase Section Three (Pop. 733)
  3. Chevy Chase View (Pop. 935)
  4. North Chevy Chase (Pop. 498)
  5. Chevy Chase Section Five (Pop. 641)
  6. Glen Echo (Pop. 334)
  7. Nanticoke (Pop. 443)
  8. Tolchester (Pop. 284)
  9. Highland (Pop. 950)
  10. Beaver Creek (Pop. 296)

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

  1. Baltimore (Pop. 621,000)
  2. Bladensburg (Pop. 9,505)
  3. Cambridge (Pop. 12,552)

For more Maryland reading, check out:

Where Are The Best Places To Live In Maryland?

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
1 Hampstead 6,352 4.3% $234,800
2 Rockville 65,171 4.9% $499,400
3 Bowie 57,633 6.8% $303,900
4 Poolesville 5,108 3.6% $391,600
5 Walkersville 5,989 4.2% $304,200
6 Mount Airy 9,376 4.9% $351,300
7 La Plata 9,059 3.4% $320,600
8 Thurmont 6,435 8.7% $238,800
9 Cheverly 6,390 8.8% $297,100
10 Takoma Park 17,567 7.7% $508,600

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.

One thought on “10 Best Places To Live In Maryland For 2019

  1. I think Annapolis is the best place to live, if you love history, historical houses, beauty, boats water views, great places to shop, great churches, performing arts, convenience of short distances to Washington D.C., Baltimore and airports and trains.

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