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Best Places to Live

How to Find Your Own Best Place to Live


Palm tree on Hawaiian Island

For many people, Hawaii is the best place to live.

© Adam Weintraub
When I decided it was time to get the heck out of Dodge (Dodge being Minnesota), shortly after 9/11, my husband suggested we consider the East Coast. That's because he is a journalist, and there are more jobs back east. He was thinking New England, north of the Mason Dixon line, where it gets cold. I was thinking Hawaii.

As a society, or even as a couple, we don't always agree on the best places to live. You might prefer the desert or maybe the mountains; your spouse or partner might like the ocean. Everybody has one's own heart's desire to follow. Where is yours?

One of the nicest aspects of living in the United States, for those of us who live here, is the fact we can choose from a huge variety of climates and lifestyles, and we will still live in America.

Here's a look at a few reports that can help you choose the best place to live:

Forbes.com Best Places to Live

The Forbes Web site is a virtual collection of top-ten-lists, covering the worst to the best of just about any topic you can imagine. Because we all use different criteria for selecting the best place to live, Forbes has categorized its annual top 10 selections as follows:

  • America's 10 Cleanest Cities
  • Top Towns for Empty Nesters
  • Top 10 Most Affordable Places to Live Well
  • Top 10 Cities for Jobs
  • Top 10 Cities for Business and Careers
  • 10 Best Cities for Savings
  • Best Cities for Young Professionals
  • Top Suburbs to Live Well

Money Magazine's Best Places to Live

Enter keywords "best places to live" on Money Magazine's web site, and you can enter your own criteria for a search. Money publishes the Top 100 lists every year. You can also view the top places to live by the following data:

  • Best Places, State-by-State
  • By Prices, Weather, Age Group, Cleanest and Commutes
  • 10 Best Big Cities
  • Highest Percentage of Singles
  • Top Earning Towns

Find Your Best Place to Live

I love this site. It walks you through criteria that is important to you. When you are finished, it will tell you that you want to live in Hawaii and your spouse prefers cities that offer adversity. Oh, wait, I'm talking about myself again. Here are the criteria this site uses to tell you that, hey, you really DO want to live in Hawaii, but your spouse prefers Outer Mongolia:

  • Big or Small Town
  • Ideal Weather
  • Cultivating Culture
  • Educational Opportunities
  • Recreation
  • Geography
  • Community and Politics
  • Faith-based Preferences
  • Taxes and Mortgage Calculations

Morever, check out Kiplinger.com . I think my husband paid them off because Sacramento is high on their list of best places to live and work.

So I finished looking through all these sites, entered all the data, answered all the questions, and guess what? My best place to live was still Hawaii. Which brings me to the conclusion that maybe you don't need a web site to tell you where the best place to live is for you.

Maybe you already know.

In case you're wondering, my husband and I moved to Sacramento, California.

At the time of writing, Elizabeth Weintraub, DRE # 00697006, is a Broker-Associate at Lyon Real Estate in Sacramento, California.

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