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Safest U.S. cities to live in

  • / Updated:
  • Samantha Parish 

When it comes to moving, people want to know what the safest U.S. cities to live in are before deciding where to go.

safest U.S. cities to live in

When it comes to “safety” that can mean many different things. There are threats of the spread of COVID-19 that people still worry about, the threat of natural disasters, and shootings that have happened.

There are many ways to define danger or safety issues, but choosing a place to live can reduce your risk to certain types of danger.

Wallethub recently ranked over 180 cities throughout the U.S. based on 42 key indicators of safety.

What are the safest cities to live in in the U.S.?

There were different types of things used to determine which cities were safer than others. Overall, Wallethub looked at home and community safety, natural disaster risk, and financial safety.

Data used to determine each safety factor for these U.S. cities

Home and Community Safety

  • Percentage of residents fully vaccinated against COVID-19
  • Presence of terrorist attacks
  • Number of mass shootings
  • Murders and non-negligent manslaughters
  • Forcible rapes
  • Assaults
  • Thefts
  • Sex offenders
  • Law enforcement employees
  • Active firefighters
  • EMTs and paramedics
  • Hate crimes
  • Share of sheltered homeless
  • Perception of safety
  • Drug poisoning deaths
  • Traffic fatalities
  • Pedestrian fatalities
  • Road quality

Natural Disaster Risks

  • Earthquake risk
  • Flood risk
  • Hail risk
  • Hurricane storm surge risk
  • Tornado risk
  • Wildfire risk

Financial Safety

  • Unemployment rate
  • Underemployment rate
  • Uninsured population
  • Uninsured drivers
  • Foreclosure rate
  • Median credit score
  • Debt to income ratio
  • Homeowners spending at least 35% of their income on housing
  • Poverty rate
  • Fraud
  • Identity theft
  • Unbanked households
  • Job security
  • Employment growth
  • Emergency savings
  • Retirement plan access
  • Personal bankruptcy filings
  • Back mortgages

What were the safest cities in the data set?

Overall the safest city in the U.S. was Columbia, Maryland. The least safest out of the 182 cities ranked was St. Louis, Missouri.

When it came to traffic fatalities, the fewest happened in Columbia, Maryland and the mpst happened in Memphis, Tennessee.

For law enforcement presence, Washington, DC had the most and Chula Vista, California had the least. Most cities ranked that came in with the least were in California.

Irvine, California had the fewest assaults per capita, and Memphis, Tennessee had the most. For hate crimes, Tampa, Florida had the fewest and Cleveland, Ohio had the most.

Miami, Florida had the lowest unemployment rate, and Detroit, Michigan had the highest.

When it comes to the city with the highest percentage of households with emergency savings, Wichita, Kansas had the most. Memphis, Tennessee had the least.

For a risk of natural disaster, Dover, Delaware has the lowest risk level and Oklahoma City in Oklahoma had the highest risk.

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