Huntsville ranks #2 on U.S. News & World Report's 2023-2024 Best Places to Live

Huntsville ranks #2 on U.S. News & World Report's 2023-2024 Best Places to Live

By Devon Thorsby | Edited by Dawn Bradbury
U.S. News & World Report

The annual Best Places to Live list sees a new metro area in the top spot as consumers place more emphasis on affordability.

U.S. News & World Report revealed the 2023-2024 Best Places to Live in the U.S. rankings on Tuesday, which compares the 150 most populous metro areas in the U.S. based on affordability, quality of life, desirability and job market.

Released annually, the Best Places to Live rankings are based on the details people consider most carefully when moving somewhere new, from the cost of living to the weather, and more minute factors like air quality and access to health care.

New to the No. 1 spot this year is Green Bay, Wisconsin, which has for a handful of years been located near the top of the rankings for its housing affordability, low crime and high air quality. While people who haven’t visited the northeastern Wisconsin metro area may exclusively recognize the city’s name for its NFL team the Packers, the metro area offers varied attractions, from historical and art museums to craft breweries and outdoor activities in both warm and cold weather.

Factors added to the ranking’s calculations this year include price parity, or the cost of goods and services to make them comparable from place to place; risk and resiliency regarding extreme weather and how temperate the climate is. For natural disaster risk and resiliency as determined by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, in particular, Green Bay scored well, ranking third out of the 150 metro areas on the list.

With many people across the U.S. facing housing affordability issues, be it rent, a down payment on a mortgage or utilities, the ability to cover housing costs with their income and afford the typical goods and services of daily life is top of mind when considering a move. Economic uncertainty may have many putting off a cross-country move this year, but research and planning take time to find the best place that offers the quality of life one expects out of a new hometown. Work-from-home options have become more permanent, and there’s an even greater focus on an individual’s ability to enjoy where they live, rather than where a job will necessarily take them.

The 10 Best Places to Live in the U.S. in 2023-2024:

Housing costs are rising fast and there aren’t enough homes on the market nationwide to meet demand, and anyone looking to move is acutely aware of the competition and high cost to buy or rent a home. The Best Places to Live rankings factor in how the cost of living compares to the area’s median household income as well as how the cost of goods and services compare between places, but U.S. News & World Report also broke out the data into its own ranking.