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This Is the Best Place to Live in Minnesota

imageForEntry10 Nm8The number of Americans who relocate each year has been trending downward for decades. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, only 28.2 million people moved to a new home in 2022, down from 41.1 million 20 years earlier. Of those who did move in 2022, the vast majority – an estimated 78% – stayed within the same state.

When Americans do decide to move, many do so to improve their standard of living. Climate, health considerations, taking or finding a new job, buying a better or more affordable home, and living in a safer neighborhood are all commonly cited reasons. But for those who are not prepared to move across the country, within every state, there are cities and towns that stand out for the higher overall quality of life they can offer.

Based on a weighted index of 22 key measures from government sources, related to community, the economy, and quality of life, North Oaks ranks as the best place to live in Minnesota.

North Oaks, home to about 5,200 people, has a median household income of $220,861 and a median home value of $696,800. According to the 2023 County Health Rankings and Roadmaps program, a collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, 99.8% of the local population have easy access to places for exercise, like parks. Census data also shows that there are about 38.9 recreational and entertainment venues, such as movie theaters, museums, sports clubs, libraries, and restaurants for every 10,000 businesses in the area.

We considered all places in the U.S. with sufficient data and populations of at least 5,000. Our list includes cities, towns, villages, boroughs, and unincorporated communities. Click here to read our full methodology.

Best place to live Total population Median household income ($) Median home value ($) Population with access to exercise opportunities (%) Entertainment and recreation venues per 10,000 businesses
Alabama: Mountain Brook 22,180 150,268 697,800 80.0 24.3
Alaska: Juneau 32,240 90,126 358,200 100.0 27.1
Arizona: Paradise Valley 12,670 203,659 1,778,000 92.7 25.6
Arkansas: Fayetteville 92,070 52,111 255,600 82.4 16.9
California: Orinda 19,500 248,984 1,538,400 98.2 27.0
Colorado: Aspen 7,020 89,625 N/A 94.6 N/A
Connecticut: Old Greenwich 6,930 234,152 1,444,800 97.5 57.2
Delaware: Hockessin 13,460 158,036 460,800 93.5 33.2
Florida: Key Biscayne 14,530 167,990 1,246,700 98.5 18.1
Georgia: Druid Hills 8,610 137,576 698,000 88.5 12.4
Hawaii: Laie 6,440 101,011 937,000 97.3 33.4
Idaho: Boise City 231,540 68,373 322,300 86.0 27.7
Illinois: Glencoe 8,820 212,132 1,101,200 99.3 24.6
Indiana: Carmel 98,140 119,772 372,100 89.8 25.4
Iowa: Iowa City 74,240 51,925 230,700 89.6 23.4
Kansas: Leawood 33,750 159,540 498,900 96.7 22.0
Kentucky: Lexington-Fayette 321,350 61,526 216,800 99.2 20.1
Louisiana: Oak Hills Place 9,200 90,347 363,600 96.9 15.9
Maine: Portland 68,060 66,109 341,700 85.1 73.2
Maryland: Chevy Chase 9,890 207,971 999,200 99.8 21.8
Massachusetts: Wellesley 29,370 226,250 1,251,800 94.7 31.6
Michigan: Ann Arbor 122,730 73,276 366,600 87.8 41.7
Minnesota: North Oaks 5,200 220,861 696,800 99.8 38.9
Mississippi: Madison 27,460 119,662 282,600 81.2 24.0
Missouri: Fort Leonard Wood 15,630 61,913 N/A 66.1 N/A
Montana: Bozeman 51,570 67,354 466,400 83.2 32.4
Nebraska: Chadron 5,380 50,363 132,700 89.6 N/A
Nevada: Incline Village 9,440 131,914 1,042,700 88.3 14.8
New Hampshire: Lebanon 14,320 80,619 274,400 84.9 113.5
New Jersey: Rumson 7,290 239,188 1,309,200 96.0 42.9
New Mexico: Los Alamos 13,270 118,293 342,000 99.3 N/A
New York: Rye 16,460 207,930 1,529,400 99.6 42.6
North Carolina: Chapel Hill 60,920 77,037 454,300 83.3 15.0
North Dakota: Grand Forks 58,870 53,611 215,900 88.0 36.9
Ohio: The Village of Indian Hill 6,020 194,643 918,800 96.9 33.6
Oklahoma: Oklahoma City 673,180 59,679 168,900 93.8 21.3
Oregon: Portland 647,180 78,476 462,800 99.5 39.1
Pennsylvania: Merion Station 5,370 233,340 693,800 96.4 38.7
Rhode Island: Newport 25,320 77,092 529,900 92.9 129.3
South Carolina: Mount Pleasant 88,900 106,216 499,600 89.8 43.8
South Dakota: Vermillion 11,510 47,920 169,500 85.5 N/A
Tennessee: Brentwood 44,350 165,948 711,900 81.9 11.2
Texas: University Park 25,030 247,045 1,380,600 96.7 20.4
Utah: Summit Park 8,410 156,200 814,900 95.1 22.2
Vermont: Middlebury 7,190 65,050 332,200 64.0 26.2
Virginia: McLean 49,310 242,610 1,102,100 99.7 14.8
Washington: Mercer Island 25,510 170,000 1,504,500 98.0 30.4
West Virginia: Cheat Lake 10,190 99,656 305,000 74.7 20.8
Wisconsin: Mequon 24,810 135,425 402,900 97.3 64.2
Wyoming: Jackson 10,730 83,289 836,300 97.7 51.2
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