The best place to live in Pennsylvania you ask?
Why that’s easy of course.
Wrong, at least according to the most recent data from the Census and FBI that we are going to dive into today. And this wasn’t even a close one like trying to determine if you should root for the Steelers or Eagles.
We don’t take the decision to find the best place to live lightly, we believe in making the decision based on the cold hard facts and data instead of preconceived notions. And for the last four years, we’ve been doing our best to help you find the place in Pennsylvania that fits your needs.
Whether you’re looking for good schools — like in Swarthmore — or a great economy — like the 0.9% unemployment rate in Clarks Summit, we have you covered.
And while all of Pennsylvania is a pretty great, there are definitely places that are a tick above the rest.
So “Youse” and “Yinz” can put aside the cross state rivalry for a minute, pick up a Yuengling, and cozy up with some scrapple as we break down the best places to live in Pennsylvania based on crime, incomes, and home prices for the 174 cities in PA larger than 5,000 people.
Here are the 10 best places to live in Pennsylvania for 2019:
- Camp Hill (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Clarks Summit (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Swarthmore (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Lititz (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Collegeville (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Conshohocken (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Franklin Park (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Hollidaysburg (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- New Cumberland (Photos | Homes For Sale)
- Ridley Park (Photos | Homes For Sale)
So while Pittsburgh and Philadelphia aren’t the best places to call home in the Keystone State, the places around the metros are the best of the best.
What’s the best place to live in Pennsylvania? According to data from the Census and FBI UCR, the best place to live in Pennsylvania for 2019 is Camp Hill for the second year a row. It’s kind of like they set up a tent at the top of this ranking wouldn’t ya say.
We weren’t surprised to see Camp Hill here after the results last year, but it is funny with all the hype around the two biggest cities that the best place to live is actually a suburb of Harrisburg.
Now that you have an understanding of the best places to live in PA, let’s take a drive down our methodology and take a deep dive into the ten best. Just remember to stop at WaWa before you hop in the car with us.
For more Pennsylvania reading, check out:
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In Pennsylvania
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Pennsylvania
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Pennsylvania
Mapping The Best And Worst Places To Live in Pennsylvania
The Pressing Question: Size
Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Harrisburg with a population of 49,160 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 174 cities, 690 towns, and 733 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 Pennsylvania
Now that we had our set of cities, it was time to rank them.
We ranked each place in Pennsylvania across a number of criteria from one to 174, 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 Pennsylvania”.
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 Pennsylvania? That would be Camp Hill.
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 Pennsylvania.
Otherwise, buckle up for a ride down good living lane with Camp Hill at the end of the cul-de-sac.
The 10 Best Places To Live In Pennsylvania For 2019
Perhaps what makes Camp Hill 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 Camp Hill great. They also have the 11th highest median income and the 18th shortest commute time.
We wouldn’t be surprised to see CNN call Clarks Summit 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 Clarks Summit.
Swarthmore 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 $377,900 and households earn a median salary of $92,292. One could get used to that.
Lititz takes 4th place on our list of best places in Pennsylvania for 2019 thanks to a strong showing in unemployment rate (16th overall) and things to do.
Lititz 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 $185,300 at the median.
We think the motto in Collegeville should be “Everything is greater in Collegeville,” and that seems to be pretty close to the truth.
Collegeville has some of the highest home values in Pennsylvania, and they’re going up fast. Additionally, Collegeville only has 150.0% of its residents living in poverty.
Crime is also well below the state average, making Collegeville a solid option for people who value safety. At least those who can afford it.
Good things do come in small packages; it’s true for Conshohocken, which with a population of 7,916 makes it one of the smallest on this list.
Relatively low unemployment and relatively high adjusted income are just two blessings Conshohocken residents enjoy.
The 41st lowest crime rate in all of Pennsylvania makes Conshohocken one of the safest place on this list.
It’s obvious why Franklin Park ranks 7th in the state for best places to live: they have the 23rd lowest unemployment rate and the 4th highest home values.
Plus, they’re known for their quality education and relatively low crime, making Franklin Park a great place to live.
Hollidaysburg broke into the top ten best places to live in Pennsylvania on the back of a low unemployment and a quality schools system.
It placed 4th overall for its low unemployment rate and the 48th highest median income of any place in our analysis.
However, it only has the 33rd shortest average commute time of any place in Pennsylvania.
New Cumberland 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\New Cumberland had the 53rd highest household median income adjusted for cost of living at $51,173.
Not to mention that its residents have plenty to do on the weekends.
Ridley Park’s unemployment rates are some of the lowest in the state and the median income is the 12th highest, making Ridley Park a great place to work and settle down if you’re look for a stable job with a stable income.
Additionally, Ridley Park has above average education and low crime, making this place a safe place to live.
Wrapping Up The Best Places When It Comes To Living In Pennsylvania
If you’re looking at areas in Pennsylvania with the best economic situations, where there’s lower than average crime, and a lot to do, this is an accurate list.
Camp Hill made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for the best place to live in Pennsylvania for 2019.
Best Towns To Live In Pennsylvania
- Seven Fields (Pop. 2,865)
- Fox Chase (Pop. 1,280)
- Lincoln Park (Pop. 1,612)
- Colony Park (Pop. 1,459)
- Whitfield (Pop. 4,403)
- Lemont (Pop. 2,144)
- Chesterbrook (Pop. 4,693)
- Ben Avon (Pop. 1,774)
- Clarks Green (Pop. 1,435)
- Narberth (Pop. 4,305)
Best Small Towns To Live In Pennsylvania
- Ben Avon Heights (Pop. 349)
- Pennwyn (Pop. 761)
- Mount Gretna (Pop. 240)
- Glen Osborne (Pop. 553)
- Rosslyn Farms (Pop. 465)
- Harleigh (Pop. 897)
- Waverly (Pop. 579)
- Spring Ridge (Pop. 902)
- Rennerdale (Pop. 849)
- Thornburg (Pop. 449)
If you’re curious enough, here are the worst places to live in Pennsylvania according to the data:
- Duquesne (Pop. 5,534)
- Clairton (Pop. 6,719)
- McKeesport (Pop. 19,529)
For more Pennsylvania reading, check out:
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In Pennsylvania
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In Pennsylvania
- 10 Safest Places In Pennsylvania
- 10 Worst Places To Live In Pennsylvania
Detailed List Of The Best Places To Live In Pennsylvania