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Three new cities moved into the best places to call home in North Dakota according to our best places to live in North Dakota for 2019 report.
Each year we analyze what we feel are the best places to live in North Dakota. We take into account categories that we all agree make a place top ten worthy, like housing prices and median income. We also take into account places with low crime, great jobs, short commute times, and solid schools. According to the Happiness Research Institute, most people don't like where they live and wished they lived somewhere better. However, not the folks in our best places in North Dakota.
How did we determine the best places to live in North Dakota? We consulted the latest Census data on cost of living for places with 2,000 or more residents. We discovered that most North Dakotans have never really experienced unemployment. The Peace Garden State has managed to stay below the national unemployment rate; and coincidentally, have managed to be one of the least dangerous states in the country.
It's simple economics, folks. When a city's median income is above average, there is more money to spend on the things that matter. Like, the community and the programs and activities that keep the residents safe, healthy, and active. And that, North Dakotans, makes perfect sense.
Are you surprised by this year's results? Pull up a chair and put a smile on your face as we look at North Dakota's best places to live.
Here are the 10 best places to live in North Dakota for 2019:
- Lincoln (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- West Fargo (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Stanley (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Hazen (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Horace (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Williston (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Lisbon (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Dickinson (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Bismarck (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Minot (Photos | Homes For Sale)
What's the best place to live in North Dakota for 2019? Drum roll...the number one best place to live in North Dakota is Lincoln based on the most recent Census data.
We are not at all surprised. Lincoln has homes that are affordable, plentiful jobs with competitive salaries, and its neighborhoods are safe.
To see how your city compared, take a look at the list below. And if you don't find your favorite there, head on down to the bottom.
For more North Dakota reading, check out:
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In North Dakota
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In North Dakota
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In North Dakota
The 10 Best Places To Live In North Dakota For 2019
In Lincoln, everyone loves to call Lincoln home! The median home value is the 7th highest in North Dakota.
Additionally, the unemployment rate is the 14th lowest in the state. and the crime rates are some of the lowest in Peace Garden State.
Lincoln should consider renaming to Paradise Valley in our humble opinion.
West Fargo 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 $190,400 and households earn a median salary of $71,516. One could get used to that.
The Stanley has the 22nd lowest unemployment rate in North Dakota. 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 Stanley is higher than the national average and households make $60,500 per year.
We'd move to Stanley if we could in a heart beat.
If you don't have a job in Hazen, you're most likely not trying very hard. The unemployment rate here is almost as low as you can get -- 1.0%. 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 $77,275.
That's actually not a bad idea...
If you want to live in North Dakota, you can't go wrong if you decide to make the Horace 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 $107,000 median income will do that).
Plus, the residents are really involved with helping to make Horace as great as possible. You can't get it much better than in Horace.
Williston has a strong showing in our best places to live in North Dakota 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 North Dakota, Williston is a great option.
Perhaps what makes Lisbon so amazing is the high emphasis they put on quality education: they have one of the highest rate of education at attainment for adults.
However, quality education isn't all that makes Lisbon great. They also have the 13th highest median income and the 7th shortest commute time.
The Town of Dickinson might be a bit of a surprise to some in terms of how well it ranks according to science.
The crime rate in Dickinson isn't amazing, but it's far below the state average. The homes are valued at $224,800 here, and the schools get some of the most funding in North Dakota.
If Dickinson can get some more of their residents to work, things will look even rosier here. The unemployment rate (3.5% is the 16th highest in the state.
Crime is something that doesn't happen very often in Bismarck. Statistically the 20th safest place in the state, there were only 212 violent crimes in the entire city last year.
It's really beautiful in Bismarck, and new homes continue to replace older homes. Resident earn $60,320 a year, and homes are valued at more than $205,500.
What else could you possibly want if you're someone who likes the good things in life?
Taking its place as the 10th best place in North Dakota is Minot. Residents here earn a really high salary each year, and crime is fairly low, in comparison to the rest of North Dakota.
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.
Mapping The Best And Worst Places To Live in North Dakota
The Pressing Question: Size
Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Bismarck with a population of 68,981 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 2,000
- Towns -- Populations between 1,000 and 2,000
- Small Towns -- Populations below 1,000
This left us with 22 cities, 27 towns, and 261 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 2,000 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 North Dakota
Now that we had our set of cities, it was time to rank them.
We ranked each place in North Dakota across a number of criteria from one to 22, 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 North Dakota".
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 North Dakota? That would be Lincoln.
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 North Dakota.
Otherwise, buckle up for a ride down good living lane with Lincoln at the end of the cul-de-sac.
Wrapping Up The Best Places When It Comes To Living In North Dakota
If you're looking at areas in North Dakota with the best economic situations, where there's lower than average crime, and a lot to do, this is an accurate list.
Lincoln made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for the best place to live in North Dakota for 2019.
Best Towns To Live In North Dakota
- Thompson (Pop. 1,196)
- Surrey (Pop. 1,079)
- Langdon (Pop. 1,929)
- Hettinger (Pop. 1,140)
- Burlington (Pop. 1,235)
- Washburn (Pop. 1,464)
- Carrington (Pop. 1,980)
- Bowman (Pop. 1,717)
- Hillsboro (Pop. 1,643)
- Crosby (Pop. 1,000)
Best Small Towns To Live In North Dakota
- Reile's Acres (Pop. 514)
- Briarwood (Pop. 54)
- Prairie Rose (Pop. 84)
- North River (Pop. 60)
- Newburg (Pop. 147)
- Frontier (Pop. 192)
- Oxbow (Pop. 395)
- Pembina (Pop. 502)
- Harwood (Pop. 767)
- Buchanan (Pop. 63)
If you're curious enough, here are the worst places to live in North Dakota according to the data:
- Jamestown (Pop. 15,441)
- Grafton (Pop. 4,287)
- Devils Lake (Pop. 7,299)
For more North Dakota reading, check out:
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In North Dakota
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In North Dakota
- 10 Safest Places In North Dakota
- 10 Worst Places To Live In North Dakota