Who doesn’t want to get away from the chaos that engulfs you when you stay in a big metro city? Big skyscrapers and fast-paced city life indeed attract people. However, living in confined spaces with no time to even breathe gets to you. Everyone has realized that moving to smaller cities does a lot of good to your health, as well as mental peace. After all, the Rose family did really find themselves when they moved to Schitt’s Creek, right?
Moving to a small city is always a win-win kind of situation because you get most of the big city perks minus the noise, pollution, and stress. Looking forward to finding a small city to move to? Read our feature on the best small cities in the US to move to so you can find that perfect small city for you!
Top 10 Small Cities in the U.S. to Move to
- Naples, Florida
- Parker, Colorado
- Greenville, South Carolina
- Hood River, Oregon
- Reno, Nevada
- Charlottesville, Virginia
- Missoula, Montana
- Savannah, Georgia
- Portland, Maine
- Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
1. Naples, Florida
The beautiful sunny weather combined with the sandy beaches, water sports, mouth-watering food joints, and several golf courses will ensure that you would never want to leave this city. Naples is the greatest melting pot of cultures in the USA. If you love meeting and spending time with a diverse group of people, your social life will thrive in Naples.
Theme parks like Universal Studios and Disneyland are the next-door neighbors of the city. To add to that, Naples is visited by several tourists who keep things interesting for the locals. This city, although a small one, will never let you miss the big city vibes that you used to love.
Advantages Of Moving To Naples, Florida:
You won’t have to pay any state tax, inheritance tax, or estate tax when you move to Naples, Florida.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Naples, Florida:
This area is prone to natural disasters like sinkholes and hurricanes.
Median Home Value: $410,000
Median Rent: $2,000
Median Household Income: $107,126
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 0.5 for Violent Crime & 14.67 for Property Crime (Less than National Median of 4 & 21 respectively)
2. Parker, Colorado
Located about 26 miles away from Denver, Parker, CO used to be a quaint little town. But after witnessing growth in its community as well as the job market, it started attracting people who are on the lookout for a nice suburban living experience. The spacious houses, a scenic landscape, and high-quality amenities ensure that you live comfortably here.
Parker has a lot to offer when it comes to recreational activities. A vibrant nightlife, several beautiful parks, hiking trails, delectable cuisines, golf courses, movie theatres, and scenic biking trails will certainly keep you super happy. If this wasn’t enough, the community living here is highly educated, and a high-earning one as well.
Advantages Of Moving To Parker, Colorado:
Life in Parker, CO is very safe as this place experiences a very low crime rate.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Parker, Colorado:
The cost of living in Parker, CO is higher than the national average cost of living.
Median Home Value: $587,014
Median Rent: $1,589
Median Household Income: $113,841
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 0.95 for Violent Crime and 14.31 for Property Crime (Less than National Median of 4 & 21 respectively)
See Also: Moving To Colorado – Relocation Guide
3. Greenville, South Carolina
Greenville is a highly underrated city that is situated at the foot of the majestic Blue Ridge Mountains. Outdoors is where all the locals are because exploring the picturesque waterfalls and hiking trails is one of the most enjoyable recreational activities here. To add to that, Greenville has an impressive array of parks (39 parks in one city!) where you can go and relax whenever you are feeling overwhelmed.
The annual festivals, appetizing food joints, and the local breweries ensure that you have the time of your life in Greenville. The cost of living here is exceptionally low and the friendly community will always make you feel welcomed.
Advantages Of Moving To Greenville, South Carolina:
Greenville is conveniently located and has easy access to large cities like Charlotte, Atlanta, and Chattanooga.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Greenville, South Carolina:
Don’t be surprised if you are stuck in traffic while commuting to work as more than 80% of people travel using their cars. Also, the crime rate is a bit alarming.
Median Home Value: $227,655
Median Rent: $1,174
Median Household Income: $60,351
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 5.79 for Violent Crime and 41.85 for Property Crime (More than National Median of 4 & 21 respectively)
Also Read: Relocating to South Carolina
4. Hood River, Oregon
Hood River is a place bustling with opportunities as the town focuses on the development of local businesses. Although it is located just about an hour away from Portland, life here is slow-paced and every moment can be enjoyed peacefully. The traffic is less and the homes are spacious and pretty. This town also offers great schooling options for your kids because of which it is a wonderful place to settle with your family.
The main attraction of this town is the breathtaking landscape that surrounds it. The Hood Mountain attracts several mountain climbers and is a must-visit for every American. Living here is adventurous, especially because it is the Windsurfing Capital of the World.
Advantages Of Moving To Hood River, Oregon:
The community living in Hood River is quite close-knit which ensures that you have a beautiful small-town living experience here. This place also doesn’t experience any weather extremities.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Hood River, Oregon:
Life in Hood River is quite expensive.
Median Home Value: $508,657
Median Rent: $1,125
Median Household Income: $113,841
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 1.92 for Violent Crime and 29.61 for Property Crime (The Violent Crime rate in Hood River is less than the National Median of 4, and the Property Crime Rate is more than the more than National Median of 21)
5. Reno, Nevada
If an energetic community spirit is what you need, you should definitely move to Reno. The city of Reno is studded with live music festivals, large-scale cultural events, casinos, and lively nightlife. If this wasn’t enough, you won’t miss being outdoors when you are in Reno. Skiing during winters and hiking during summers will give you enough to do throughout the year.
The economy of Reno is ever-growing which proves to be beneficial for its locals. Living in Reno isn’t expensive at all, thanks to the no state income tax and cheaper housing rates. If this wasn’t enough, taking a break from your normal routine comes easily as Reno has several attractive tourist spots like Lake Tahoe in its close proximity.
Advantages Of Moving To Reno, Nevada:
Reno’s high-end restaurants have ranked number one amongst the small cities of the country. Reno is basically a paradise on earth if you are a foodie.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Reno, Nevada:
The public transport system in Reno is not the best way to commute as it is somewhat inefficient and the crime rate can be a bit of a concern.
Median Home Value: $463,264
Median Rent: $1,322
Median Household Income: $58,790
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 5.57 for Violent Crime and 21.33 for Property Crime (More than National Median of 4 & 21 respectively)
6. Charlottesville, Virginia
Charlottesville strikes the right balance between a snuggly village and a business-friendly city. It has a panoramic landscape and surely is a haven for artists who can explore their art freely. It is a college town (University of Virginia being the most prominent institution) because of which many people prefer moving here. The right blend of culture, cozy bookstores, malls, restaurants, music venues, boutiques, etc., make it just the perfect small city to live in.
The blooming Carter Mountain Orchards and widespread vineyards tend to be the perfect spots for picnics and day-outs. C-Ville is one of America’s favorite mountain towns so if you love hiking, we recommend that you pack your bags and move to this city immediately!
Advantages Of Moving To Charlottesville, Virgina:
It is one of the happiest cities in America and the locals would certainly tell you that they won’t live anywhere else even if they are offered a raise in their salaries.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Charlottesville, Virginia:
Staying in Charlottesville can get a little bit heavier on the pocket.
Median Home Value: $287,022
Median Rent: $1,290
Median Household Income: $62,817
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 3.74 for Violent Crime and 27.61 for Property Crime (The Violent Crime rate in Charlottesville is less than the National Median of 4, and the Property Crime Rate is more than the National Median of 21.)
Bonus: Moving To Virginia
7. Missoula, Montana
If the idea of living in a small city that has a sprawling, lush green landscape along with all the perks of urban living resonates with you, Missoula is the place to move to. The residents of the garden city agree that the quality of life is quite high here. The city is surrounded by beautiful rivers, spectacular mountain ranges, and gorgeous creeks that ensure that your life is a vacation here.
Missoula is known for its beer and the farmer’s market. You can source some really high-end local produce from here. The healthcare system is literally the one to die for (see what we did there?). The cost of living here is at par with the national average, but you will find housing at affordable costs. Life here can take a lovely turn, especially if you spend a lot of time in its funky cafes and bars, high-end restaurants, and fancy boutiques.
Advantages Of Moving To Missoula, Montana:
The schooling system here is highly ranked in the country. The University of Montana is known for harboring several genius and open-minded individuals and the college has a rich history of environmental activism behind it.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Missoula, Montana:
The city experiences temperature extremities. The 100-degree fluctuations make the summers too hot and the winters too cold.
Median Home Value: $406,425
Median Rent: $918
Median Household Income: $54,062
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 4.11 for Violent Crime and 40.81 for Property Crime (More than National Median of 4 & 21 respectively)
Also Read: Moving To Montana
8. Savannah, Georgia
Living in the coastal city of Savannah will certainly make you feel as if you are a part of some bigger than yourself. When you look at the pictures of Savannah, the charming cobblestone streets and the centuries-old houses covered in moss will quickly catch your eye. The local (southern) cooking style and the delicious seafood recipes have made Savannah restaurants (run by some famous chefs) well known throughout the country.
The Savannah College of Arts and Design attracts many artistic minds to the city. The unbeatable and enthusiastic spirit of the cultural festivals (more than 150 annually!) will make sure that you never feel like moving out of this city.
Advantages Of Moving To Savannah, Georgia:
Savannah is bustling with job opportunities in industries like tourism, manufacturing, and the military.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Savannah, Georgia:
Because of its subtropical climate, this place is always swarming with different kinds of bugs and mosquitoes. If you are extremely afraid of the creepy-crawlies, Savannah might not be the place for you.
Median Home Value: $198,625
Median Rent: $1,165
Median Household Income: $43,307
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 4.36 for Violent Crime and 22.83 for Property Crime (More than National Median of 4 & 21 respectively)
9. Portland, Maine
Portland, Maine, since its inception has been a pretty important city. After all, it was America’s first state capital! Needless to say, the city has a rich historical past. The residents tend to enjoy a high quality of life. This city is not only the perfect place for retirees but also a great place for the youngsters as the unemployment rate is rather low here.
With about 17 breweries operating in the city, it has a very well-established ‘beer culture’ (beer-lovers, are you listening?). Not only this, but Portland also has a lovely working waterfront. So if you want to have a city life with a dash of outdoor adventures sprinkled into it, Portland is the place for you.
Advantages Of Moving To Portland, Maine:
Living in Portland, Maine is quite affordable or even cheap (for the ones that stay in expensive cities).
Disadvantages Of Moving To Portland, Maine:
You will spend a lot of time commuting due to traffic jams during the peak tourist season.
Median Home Value: $392,044
Median Rent: $1,360
Median Household Income: $60,467
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 2.43 for Violent Crime and 25.9 for Property Crime (Violent Crime in Portland, Maine is less than the National Median of 4 and Property Crime is more than the National Median of 21.)
10. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
Have you visited a scenic vacation spot and realized that you could actually see yourself living there? Well, that’s Myrtle Beach, SC for you. The expansive shoreline assures that you get to try out all kinds of watersports here. The tourism sector is booming and you could easily find a job of your preference here. To add to that, the community is extremely warm and friendly.
Myrtle Beach is the home to several reputed public, parochial, private, and charter schools and 2 of the finest universities in the country. The weather here is perfectly warm and allows you to enjoy the outdoor activities to the fullest. If you want to have a beautiful family life, consider moving to Myrtle Beach.
Advantages Of Moving To Myrtle Beach, South Carolina:
The award-winning medical centers help the locals to stay in the pink of their health throughout the year.
Disadvantages Of Moving To Myrtle Beach, South Carolina:
The pollen season can trigger your allergies big time (if you have any). But more importantly, the crime rate of this city is alarming, to say the least.
Median Home Value: $206,449
Median Rent: $1,131
Median Household Income: $43,200
Crime Rate (Per 1000 residents): 11.99 for Violent Crime and 112.87 for Property Crime (Much more than National Median of 4 & 21 respectively.)
Read Also: Relocation to South Carolina
People have a certain notion about small cities which is far from true. Many small cities including the ones mentioned in our list offer a comfortable living experience. This does not mean that they are any less lively than a metropolitan city. The only difference is that the locals enjoy their life to the fullest as opposed to the constant stress faced by the big city dwellers. If you ask us, we would 100% recommend moving to a beautiful small city and living a stress-free life if that’s your jam!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best small city to live in America?
Reno, Nevada is the best small city to move to in the USA. Other than this, Savannah, Naples, Santa Fe, and Myrtle Beach are also some of the best places to move to.
Where is the best place to raise a family in USA?
Boulder, Colorado followed by Des Moines, Iowa, and Huntsville Alabama is the best place to raise a family in the USA.
Where do the happiest people live?
Lincoln, NE ranks as the happiest place to stay in the USA. After Lincoln, cities that are home to the happiest residents are Madison (WI), Raleigh (NC), and Portland (ME).