Redmond rips the rest: US’ most livable small city is in Western Washington

Jun 27, 2023, 4:36 PM

Redmond Park...

The clouds over Redmond did not stop it from being ranked #1. (Redmond.gov)


Let the rain be damned; these Seattle-area cities are apparently the places to be.

SmartAsset, a personal finance site, ranked the most livable small cities in the U.S. to live in, and what do you know?

  • No. 1 overall in the U.S.: Redmond, Wash.
  • No. 2 overall: Sammamish, Wash.
  • No. 7 overall: Kirkland, Wash.

“Redmond, home to approximately 76,000 people, ranks as the most livable small city in America. Only 1.93% of residents don’t have health insurance, which gives Redmond the 10th-lowest uninsured rate across our study,” said Patrick Villanova, a personal finance expert for SmartAsset. “This Seattle suburb also ranks 24th-highest for its concentration of bars. Meanwhile, housing costs are 17.77% of the median household income – lower than almost 90% of cities evaluated.”

That means people who live in Redmond mostly have beaucoup bucks.

Rolling in at second place, Sammamish.

“Sammamish, located about 20 miles east of Seattle, has the third-lowest percentage of residents living below the poverty level (2.5%),” Villanova explained. “Average housing costs eat up just 17.12% of the median income in Sammamish, which is less than 93% of the cities that we evaluated. Meanwhile, only 2.52% of residents in this city of over 66,000 people don’t have health insurance (20th best).”

Third in America is the place on the lake: Kirkland.

Living in Kirkland offers residents an urban-suburban mix feel, and most residents own their homes. There are plenty of restaurants, coffee shops, and parks.

Breakdown: Seattle ranks among most expensive in US to raise a child

SmartAsset analyzed data for 275 small cities. It compared these cities across various metrics related to dining and entertainment, healthcare, employment and poverty, healthcare, and average commute times. It did not, however, include rain in its study.

Three of the 11 most livable small cities are located in Michigan as well. Novi placed third, Farmington Hills was eighth, and Troy finished in a tie for 10th with Queen Creek, Arizona.

But everyone did not get rankings that were peaches and cream.

Seven of the 10 highest unemployment rates are in California cities. Tulare and Merced have 9.7% unemployment as of April 2023. Madera, Turlock, Manteca, Lodi, and Traci also place among the top ten highest unemployment rates, at 5.8% or higher.

Just to be mean, the bottom three cities are: Madera, California (No. 275); Merced, California (274); Albany, Georgia (273). From the looks of things, the sun may not be helping those towns.

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Redmond rips the rest: US’ most livable small city is in Western Washington