These Are The 10 Best Places To Live In New Mexico For 2019


These are the most enchanting places to live in the Land Of Enchantment.

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

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Where are the best places in the state of New Mexico?

To the untrained eye they are the places that have awesome economies. They’re the places in Land of Enchantment where people have the best jobs, residents are all above average, and the sun shines the most.

However, here at HomeSnacks, we don’t trust the untrained eye and instead look to data to understand the best places to call home in New Mexico.

There might be some surprises on this list, but when you look at the unbiased data, it’s hard to argue against.

After analyzing 32 places in New Mexico, we came up with this list of the best places:

  1. Corrales (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  2. Rio Rancho (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  3. Ruidoso (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  4. Los Ranchos de Albuquerque (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  5. Santa Fe (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  6. Carlsbad (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  7. Artesia (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  8. Alamogordo (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  9. Farmington (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  10. Albuquerque (Photos | Homes For Sale)

Well, it looks like you should check out Corrales if you’re thinking of moving to New Mexico — it’s the best the Land of Enchantment has to offer according to the data.

Follow along as we provide more insight into how we reached our overall best places to live in New Mexico.

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 New Mexico reading, check out:

Mapping The Best And Worst Places To Live in New Mexico

The Pressing Question: Size

Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Santa Fe with a population of 82,927 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 32 cities, 91 towns, and 145 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 New Mexico

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

We ranked each place in New Mexico across a number of criteria from one to 32, 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 New Mexico”.

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 New Mexico? That would be Corrales.

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 New Mexico.

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

Corrales, NM

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 8,474
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $433,100 (1st best)
Unemployment Rate: 6.1% (6th best)
More on Corrales: Real Estate | Data | Photos

According to scientific data, Corrales is the best place in New Mexico, and it’s not even close.

Residents here earn the 1st most per household in the state and crime is basically non-existent.

No wonder the population here has jumped more than 30% in the last five years. Everyone who can afford it wants to live here.

So if you’re moving to New Mexico and want to settle in an awesome place, look no further.

Rio Rancho, NM

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 92,966
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $173,100 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 7.4% (10th best)
More on Rio Rancho: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Rio Rancho has some of the most employed as well as the highest earning residents in the entire state of New Mexico. Factor in a very low crime rate, and this Rio Rancho 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 Rio Rancho residents to work is significantly higher than average.

Ruidoso, NM

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 7,833
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $167,600 (8th best)
Unemployment Rate: 6.2% (7th best)
More on Ruidoso: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Ruidoso has a really low crime rate (6th lowest) and only 6.2% of the people are unemployed. Additionally, residents here have high paying jobs ($40,032). And that goes a long way.

The population is growing at a steady clip, and the cost of living is lower than it should be. So people have an extra incentive to live in Ruidoso.

Los Ranchos De Albuquerque, NM

Overall SnackAbility

7.5
/10

Population: 6,069
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $346,300 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.3% (3rd best)
More on Los Ranchos De Albuquerque: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Los Ranchos De Albuquerque isn’t just the nicest place to live in New Mexico – it’s also the one of the fastest growing places in the state. And with good reason.

It’s got the 3rd lowest unemployment rate, the 3rd highest adjusted income, and rates above most places in education.

When you’re looking at science and data, Los Ranchos De Albuquerque definitely deserves a spot on the list for 2019.

Santa Fe, NM

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 82,927
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $259,700 (4th best)
Unemployment Rate: 6.9% (8th best)
More on Santa Fe: 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 Santa Fe.

Things are looking peachy keen here. The unemployment rate is the 8th lowest in New Mexico and the median income comes in at $51,572.

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

Carlsbad, NM

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 28,079
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 3)
Median Home Value: $125,300 (17th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.4% (4th best)
More on Carlsbad: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Things can’t get much better than in the town of Carlsbad. The crime is the 16th lowest in the entire state, and the residents who live in Carlsbad make huge salaries, and almost all of them have great jobs.

The median home costs a cool $125,300 and households make $58,292 which is good for 4th in New Mexico.

Artesia, NM

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 11,817
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $145,400 (13th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.1% (2nd best)
More on Artesia: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Artesia has been called one of the best small towns in America. If you live here, you’re most likely already aware of how great it is to live there.

Just about everyone who wants a job in Artesia has one; the unemployment rate is hovering at about 5.1% and lowering. And the Artesia police department is doing a solid job, as crime is the 22nd lowest in the state here.

Who wouldn’t want to live in a place like this?

Alamogordo, NM

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 31,201
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $113,200 (22nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 8.6% (17th best)
More on Alamogordo: Real Estate | Data | Photos

It’s obvious why Alamogordo ranks 8th in the state for best places to live: they have the 17th lowest unemployment rate and the 22nd highest home values.

Plus, they’re known for their quality education and relatively low crime, making Alamogordo a great place to live.

Farmington, NM

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 44,067
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 4)
Median Home Value: $174,900 (6th best)
Unemployment Rate: 7.7% (12th best)
More on Farmington: Real Estate | Data | Photos

We wouldn’t be surprised to see CNN call Farmington one of the best places to live in the United States. Not only do the residents all make great livings, there’s essentially no crime in the entire city. And the residents are very involved in the community.

They can’t build homes fast enough here as it seems everyone wants a piece of Farmington.

Albuquerque, NM

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 556,859
Rank Last Year: 12 (Up 2)
Median Home Value: $185,400 (5th best)
Unemployment Rate: 7.3% (9th best)
More on Albuquerque: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Albuquerque has a strong showing in our best places to live in New Mexico analysis, coming it at 10th 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 New Mexico, Albuquerque is a great option.

Wrapping Up The Best Places When It Comes To Living In New Mexico

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

Corrales made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for the best place to live in New Mexico for 2019.

Best Towns To Live In New Mexico

  1. Sandia Heights (Pop. 3,319)
  2. La Huerta (Pop. 1,332)
  3. San Antonito CDP (Bernalillo (Pop. 1,186)
  4. Sandia Knolls (Pop. 1,475)
  5. Bosque Farms (Pop. 3,863)
  6. El Rancho (Pop. 1,185)
  7. Placitas CDP (Sandoval (Pop. 4,853)
  8. Arenas Valley (Pop. 1,480)
  9. Ponderosa Pine (Pop. 1,382)
  10. La Mesilla (Pop. 2,165)

Best Small Towns To Live In New Mexico

  1. Veguita (Pop. 290)
  2. Pleasanton (Pop. 152)
  3. Twin Forks (Pop. 254)
  4. Luis Lopez (Pop. 239)
  5. San Pedro (Pop. 136)
  6. Galisteo (Pop. 290)
  7. Las Palomas (Pop. 412)
  8. Tijeras (Pop. 547)
  9. Jaconita (Pop. 421)
  10. San Jose CDP (San Miguel (Pop. 165)

If you’re curious enough, here are the worst places to live in New Mexico according to the data:

  1. Anthony (Pop. 9,459)
  2. Deming (Pop. 14,582)
  3. Belen (Pop. 7,184)

For more New Mexico reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Places To Live In New Mexico

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
1 Corrales 8,474 6.1% $433,100
2 Rio Rancho 92,966 7.4% $173,100
3 Ruidoso 7,833 6.2% $167,600
4 Los Ranchos De Albuquerque 6,069 5.3% $346,300
5 Santa Fe 82,927 6.9% $259,700
6 Carlsbad 28,079 5.4% $125,300
7 Artesia 11,817 5.1% $145,400
8 Alamogordo 31,201 8.6% $113,200
9 Farmington 44,067 7.7% $174,900
10 Albuquerque 556,859 7.3% $185,400
11 Lovington 11,559 9.3% $96,800
12 Tucumcari 5,091 4.3% $53,300
13 Las Cruces 101,459 9.9% $149,200
14 Bloomfield 7,565 9.3% $132,800
15 Aztec 6,354 7.8% $155,400
16 Raton 6,348 10.2% $80,700
17 Los Lunas 15,271 10.3% $152,800
18 Clovis 39,461 10.0% $127,000
19 Hobbs 36,863 6.0% $116,300
20 Taos 5,735 10.2% $274,000
21 Las Vegas 13,570 7.6% $114,900
22 Portales 12,275 13.1% $116,300
23 Roswell 48,407 7.7% $100,700
24 Truth Or Consequences 6,157 9.3% $77,600
25 Bernalillo 8,676 11.2% $147,400
26 Socorro 8,760 8.2% $114,700
27 Gallup 22,523 7.9% $132,000
28 Grants 9,263 11.9% $103,200
29 Sunland Park 15,588 12.9% $102,900
30 Anthony 9,459 10.2% $86,100
31 Deming 14,582 16.6% $84,300
32 Belen 7,184 11.9% $98,700

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