10 Best Places To Live In Virginia For 2019


These are the cream of the crop in the Commonwealth.

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

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Where are the best places to live in Virginia?

Some might say wherever there's a college basketball team, a NASCAR track, a sunny beach, a snowy mountain, a pot of blue crab, or a hefty Brunswick Stew. When you stumble upon all, you might feel like you've won the Virginia Lottery. That's right, folks, Virginia is not only 'For Lovers,' it has some of the best cities on the East Coast. And lucky for you, HomeSnacks has calculated the top ten best places to live in Virginia for 2019.

All Virginia Tech basketball and Chesapeake Bay Blue Crab aside, Virginia is the tenth oldest state in the country, so that's all the more reason that they should have the best cities. They've had some time to perfect them. And that's just what the Virginia cities on our top ten best cities list have done.

The Old Dominion cities that made our list average some of the highest median household incomes and boasts some of the most expensive homes. These cities have some of the most educated residents and safety is a priority.

So grab yourself some boiled peanuts, a shot of good 'ol Virginia whiskey, and read on.

What does the best place to live in the Birthplace of American Spirits look like? The best place to live in Virginia for 2019 is Vienna.

We are not at all surprised. Vienna is beautiful, quaint, safe, and bursting at the seams with great people.

However, the competition was fierce to say the least. To see Virginia's other best of the best cities, take a look below. And if you don't find your favorite city 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 Virginia reading, check out:

The 10 Best Places To Live In Virginia For 2019

Vienna, VA

Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 16,378
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $662,200 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 2.9% (1st best)
More on Vienna: Real Estate | Data | Photos

According to scientific data, Vienna is the best place in Virginia, and it's not even close.

Residents here earn the 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 Virginia and want to settle in an awesome place, look no further.

Review Of Vienna by HomeSnacks User

I have lived all over the country from the mid-west to up and down the coats and Vienna, VA has been our favorite place. Vienna is a Wonderful area where there is a bit of everything. Great place to raise kids in a small town environment while being just 20 minutes away from the nation's capital. Access to everything while being far away from the big city inconveniences that we all forget about.

It's a close knit community where neighbors know each other and take pride in their town. The community is involved in a lot of activity planning and involved deeply in keeping the town beautiful.

Bridgewater, VA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 5,906
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 2)
Median Home Value: $209,200 (23rd best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.3% (4th best)
More on Bridgewater: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Who doesn't want to live in Bridgewater? Because, according to the data, most everyone should want to.

Crime is lower than the state average, and the unemployment rate sits at only 3.3%. The school systems are generally well funded, meaning lots of personal attention for area kids.

Expect to see more of Bridgewater in the news in the coming months.

Purcellville, VA

Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 8,914
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $426,500 (5th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.7% (11th best)
More on Purcellville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The Town of Purcellville 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 Purcellville ranks so high. First of all, the homes in Purcellville are the 5th most expensive in the state of Virginia, with the average home worth a whopping $426,500. 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 Purcellville if they can afford it.

Other numbers that stand out: Purcellville residents have the 2nd highest income in the state, and the 2nd lowest crime numbers in Virginia.

Falls Church, VA

Overall SnackAbility

10
/10

Population: 13,597
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 2)
Median Home Value: $724,000 (1st best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.3% (18th best)
More on Falls Church: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Falls Church ranks 4th on our list of best places to live in Virginia thanks to its low unemployment and high adjusted median income.

Additionally, its crime rate ranks in the lowest 10% of all places in Virginia that we examined.

People have been flocking to Falls Church over the past years. Goes to show that everyone wants in on this great community.

Poquoson, VA

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 12,068
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $301,800 (11th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.2% (3rd best)
More on Poquoson: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Let's take a look at why Poquoson is a great place to call home for 2019.

There's low crime in Poquoson, and the residents here are gainfully employed (3.2% unemployment rate).

You can make Poquoson your home for only $301,800 which won't be too hard on a $84,643 household salary.

Leesburg, VA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 49,401
Rank Last Year: 6 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $387,100 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.0% (8th best)
More on Leesburg: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Leesburg takes 6th place on our list of best places in Virginia for 2019 thanks to a strong showing in unemployment rate (8th overall) and things to do.

Leesburg 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 $387,100 at the median.

Alexandria, VA

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 151,473
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 2)
Median Home Value: $520,700 (3rd best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.0% (8th best)
More on Alexandria: Real Estate | Data | Photos

You might be surprised to see the Town of Alexandria so high on the list. Unless you live in Alexandria.

The unemployment rate here is really low, and at 4.0%, Alexandria residents are some of the hardest working in the state of Virginia. When you factor in high home prices, high incomes and low crime, Alexandria is doing quite well.

Let's be honest -- Alexandria is the kind of place you brag to your friends on Facebook about.

Review Of Alexandria by HomeSnacks User

Alexandria is a wonderful place to live and is one of the best places to find a charming, suburban community so close to downtown washington DC. It is an expensive place to live but it has a strong community, many activities for families, and plenty of amenities.

The Del Ray neighborhood is a wonderful and quaint place to visit a farmer's market or get a delicious bite to eat. Old Town is vibrant and filled with excellent food and shopping options.

Warrenton, VA

Overall SnackAbility

9
/10

Population: 9,880
Rank Last Year: 13 (Up 5)
Median Home Value: $320,900 (9th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.5% (20th best)
More on Warrenton: Real Estate | Data | Photos

If you want to live in Virginia, you can't go wrong if you decide to make the Warrenton 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 $67,553 median income will do that).

Plus, the residents are really involved with helping to make Warrenton as great as possible. You can't get it much better than in Warrenton.

Salem, VA

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 25,290
Rank Last Year: 12 (Up 3)
Median Home Value: $173,800 (35th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.0% (14th best)
More on Salem: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Salem is another great city in Virginia with a low unemployment rate and where residents earn high salaries.

Said one reviewer on City-Data.com: " We feel incredibly safe in Salem. The houses and neighborhoods are beautiful, the people are friendly, and it's wonderful to have such good neighbors. People watch out for each other here, they teach their children to be respectful of others and things."

Enough said.

Virginia Beach, VA

Overall SnackAbility

8.5
/10

Population: 449,733
Rank Last Year: 10 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $262,200 (16th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.8% (22nd best)
More on Virginia Beach: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Virginia Beach is a short drive from everything, but who would want to leave the 10th best place in Virginia?

Homes are priced around $262,200 and residents have the 39th shortest commute in Virginia.

Review Of Virginia Beach by HomeSnacks User

The positives: This place has a ton of things to do for both adults and children, making it very family friendly and oriented. You'll never get bored.

Cons: This is a tourist town, and some of the fun things, such as the boardwalk, are almost impossible for locals to access during the summer months. Also, the influx of population also brings along a higher level of crime during these months.

The restaurants here are plentiful and phenomenal. However, the people aren't always friendly.

Mapping The Best And Worst Places To Live in Virginia

The Pressing Question: Size

Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Richmond with a population of 216,773 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 62 cities, 168 towns, and 156 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 Virginia

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

We ranked each place in Virginia across a number of criteria from one to 62, 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 Virginia".

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 Virginia? That would be Vienna.

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 Virginia.

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

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

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

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

Best Towns To Live In Virginia

  1. Pantops (Pop. 3,688)
  2. Belmont Estates (Pop. 1,329)
  3. Hayfield (Pop. 4,453)
  4. Kings Park (Pop. 4,687)
  5. Daleville (Pop. 3,180)
  6. Hampden-Sydney (Pop. 1,600)
  7. Ravensworth (Pop. 2,175)
  8. Dayton (Pop. 1,633)
  9. Haymarket (Pop. 1,826)
  10. Laymantown (Pop. 2,203)

Best Small Towns To Live In Virginia

  1. Riner (Pop. 888)
  2. Clifton (Pop. 219)
  3. Washington (Pop. 140)
  4. Round Hill (Pop. 570)
  5. Bobtown (Pop. 323)
  6. Free Union (Pop. 291)
  7. Mount Crawford (Pop. 419)
  8. Occoquan (Pop. 947)
  9. Hillsboro (Pop. 98)
  10. Irvington (Pop. 403)

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

  1. Danville (Pop. 42,360)
  2. Petersburg (Pop. 31,997)
  3. Emporia (Pop. 5,565)

For more Virginia reading, check out:

Where Are The Best Places To Live In Virginia?

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
1 Vienna 16,378 2.9% $662,200
2 Bridgewater 5,906 3.3% $209,200
3 Purcellville 8,914 4.7% $426,500
4 Falls Church 13,597 5.3% $724,000
5 Poquoson 12,068 3.2% $301,800
6 Leesburg 49,401 4.0% $387,100
7 Alexandria 151,473 4.0% $520,700
8 Warrenton 9,880 5.5% $320,900
9 Salem 25,290 5.0% $173,800
10 Virginia Beach 449,733 5.8% $262,200

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 Virginia For 2019

  1. The list that you show with pictures has different town names than on the just the plain list of cities. For instance you show Herndon as #16 but the list with pictures #16 is Fredericksburg and on your plain list Fredericksburg is 26. What is going on? Plus Reston which has always been in the top 10 is not listed at all.

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