“Small towns typically offer a more affordable quality of life than larger cities in larger metros. A household’s housing dollars will go much further, allowing them to purchase more and better housing,” said Sarah Coffin, associate professor and program director of Urban Planning and Development at Saint Louis University.
“For entrepreneurial-minded households, the cost of doing business is generally more affordable with less oversight, as there are fewer layers of government in small cities,” she added.
Plus, they generally offer less traffic, fewer people and more chances to get involved with a close-knit community.
Then moving to Littleton is the best option in Colorado state and 10th-best in the country, according to a new report from WalletHub, the Washington, D.C.-based financial analyst site.
To compile its ranking, WalletHub analyzed 1,268 cities with population between 25,000 and 100,000 across five categories:
- Affordability, which included median household income, cost of living, homeownership rate and housing costs.
- Economic health, which included population and income growth, unemployment rate, share of population living below poverty level and debt per median earnings.
- Education and health, which included school system quality, share of population with a high school diploma or higher, share of insured, premature-death rate, share of adults in poor or fair health, share of live births with low birthweight, share of obese adults and share of physically inactive adults.
- Quality of life, which included average commute times, share of population who walk to work, average weekly work hours, number of attractions, and restaurants, bars, clubs, coffee shops, movie theaters, museums, performing arts centers, fitness centers and department stores per capita.
- Safety, which included both violent and property crime rates.
Littleton fared especially well when it comes to quality of life, ranking 37th nationally. It also scored well for its economic health (150th) and education & health (145th).
Littleton also ranked in the 99th percentile nationally, representing the top 1 percent of small cities in America.
Princeton, New Jersey, was named the No. 1 small city in America, followed by Lexington, Massachusetts and Leawood, Kansas, respectively.