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State’s Top 10 towns to raise kids

Maple Valley is at the top of the list for best places to raise your kids in Washington state. (Photo: Maple Valley Parks and Rec)

NerdWallet, a consumer advocacy website based in San Francisco, announced it analyzed national and statewide data to determine “The Best Places for Raising Kids” in Washington.

Towns near Seattle ranked high on the list while no town east of the Cascades was mentioned in the Top 10. Here are the core factors that made up the survey:

Does the town have good schools? The study incorporated scores from GreatSchools, a nonprofit that rates public schools in a given town with standardized test scores. Those results are then compared to the state average to arrive at a final rating on a 1 to 10 scale. Higher ratings led to a higher overall score.

How affordable are the homes? Factors included the cost of living, including ongoing, monthly homeowner costs like mortgage payments, real estate taxes, insurance costs, utilities, fuels and other bills. Lower costs led to a higher overall score.

Is the town growing and prospering? The survey evaluated a town’s economy with its median household income and income growth over the last decade. A higher income and greater growth led to a higher overall score.

Here are the cities that made Nerdwallet’s Top 10 list of “The Best Places for Raising Kids.”

1. Maple Valley 2. Woodinville 3. Issaquah 4. Tumwater 5. Bainbridge Island 6. Lake Forest Park 7. Redmond 8. Newcastle 9. Mukilteo 10. Lynden

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