The 10 Best Counties To Live In Missouri For 2022


Using science and data, we can tell you which counties in Missouri have the most for people looking to make the move to Missouri.

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Some of you might be asking yourself, at this very moment: is Missouri a good place?

The answer is unequivocally yes… if you know where to locate the best places to live in Missouri.

Lucky for you, we’re here to help you identify the best counties to live in the Show Me State based on the most recently available data from the Census. And this isn’t our first rodeo — we’ve been helping people find the best places to live in America for years.

So, the question becomes, if you wanted to relocate to the best part of Missouri, where would you go? To answer that we looked at crime, cost of living, and demographic data for all 115 counties in the state.

After the analytic dust settled, we identified the 10 best counties to live in Show Me State for 2022.

Osage County is the county to be when it comes to living the good life in Missouri. And you might want to avoid Dunklin County if you can — at least according to the data.

So if you’re thinking of making the move Missouri, we’ve got you covered. Keep on reading for a detailed methodology.

Or, check out the best places to live in Missouri and the cheapest places to live in Missouri.

The Best Counties To Live In Missouri For 2022

1. Osage County

Biggest Place: Linn

Population: 13,613
Median Income: $62,087.0 (12th best)
Median Home Price: $159,000.0 (20th best)
Unemployment Rate: 1.7% (2nd best)
More on Osage County: Data

2. St. Charles County

Lake St. Louis, MO

Biggest Place: O’Fallon

Population: 398,472
Median Income: $87,644.0 (best)
Median Home Price: $230,100.0 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.0% (22nd best)
More on St. Charles County: PhotosData

3. Lincoln County

Biggest Place: Troy

Population: 57,590
Median Income: $70,424.0 (5th best)
Median Home Price: $165,700.0 (15th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.1% (42nd best)
More on Lincoln County: Data

4. Cole County

Jefferson City, MO

Source: Public domain

Biggest Place: Jefferson City

Population: 76,630
Median Income: $61,184.0 (15th best)
Median Home Price: $169,700.0 (13th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.9% (37th best)
More on Cole County: PhotosData

5. Andrew County

Savannah, MO

Biggest Place: Savannah

Population: 17,554
Median Income: $58,911.0 (18th best)
Median Home Price: $150,200.0 (28th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.0% (40th best)
More on Andrew County: PhotosData

6. Clinton County

Cameron, MO

Biggest Place: Cameron

Population: 20,503
Median Income: $62,213.0 (11th best)
Median Home Price: $160,800.0 (18th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.5% (3best)
More on Clinton County: PhotosData

7. Platte County

Kansas City, MO

Biggest Place: Kansas City

Population: 102,848
Median Income: $82,448.0 (2nd best)
Median Home Price: $238,800.0 (best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.4% (28th best)
More on Platte County: PhotosData

8. Howard County

Fayette, MO

Biggest Place: Fayette

Population: 10,022
Median Income: $55,000.0 (28th best)
Median Home Price: $141,400.0 (35th best)
Unemployment Rate: 2.9% (20th best)
More on Howard County: PhotosData

9. Cass County

Kansas City, MO

Biggest Place: Kansas City

Population: 104,687
Median Income: $72,522.0 (3rd best)
Median Home Price: $196,700.0 (6th best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.3% (5best)
More on Cass County: PhotosData

10. Gasconade County

Hermann, MO

Biggest Place: Owensville

Population: 14,673
Median Income: $56,380.0 (26th best)
Median Home Price: $136,800.0 (39th best)
Unemployment Rate: 1.9% (4th best)
More on Gasconade County: PhotosData

Methodology: How do you determine which Missouri county is the best?

To give you the best county in Missouri, we have to look at a handful of metrics that signal the quality of a place. To do that, we need to make some assumptions about what’s a “best county” and what isn’t. And, for reference, we are trying to make the kind of argument you’d make at a bar using facts, don’t take this analysis to court.

With that in mind, we went to two of the best sources of data on the internet; the American Community Survey data and FBI Crime data for the most recent time period.

We paid particular attention to:

  • Violent Crime Rates
  • Property Crime Rates
  • Median Home Values
  • Median Income
  • Unemployment Rates
  • Adult Education Levels
  • Health Insurance Coverage
  • Poverty Rates

We then ranked each county in Missouri across each of the criteria from one to 115, with one being the best.

Taking the average rank across all criteria, we created a quality of life score with the county posting the lowest overall score being the “Best County To Live In Missouri”.

The result is some of the safest, quiet, and best counties to raise a family in the Show Me State.

Read on to see why Osage County is the best county, while Dunklin County is probably in contention for being the worst county in Missouri.

Summary: The Best Counties In Missouri To Call Home For 2018

It turns out living in Missouri can vary from one part of the state to the next — who woulda thought?

But now you the know the really good parts and the parts to avoid and that’s why you came here to learn at the end of the day. And for that, you are welcome.

Here’s a look at the worst counties in Missouri according to the data:

  1. Dunklin County
  2. Pemiscot County
  3. Hickory County

For more Missouri reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Counties In Missouri

County Rank Population Median Income Median Home Price
Osage County 1 13,613 $62,087.0 $159,000.0
St. Charles County 2 398,472 $87,644.0 $230,100.0
Lincoln County 3 57,590 $70,424.0 $165,700.0
Cole County 4 76,630 $61,184.0 $169,700.0
Andrew County 5 17,554 $58,911.0 $150,200.0
Clinton County 6 20,503 $62,213.0 $160,800.0
Platte County 7 102,848 $82,448.0 $238,800.0
Howard County 8 10,022 $55,000.0 $141,400.0
Cass County 9 104,687 $72,522.0 $196,700.0
Gasconade County 10 14,673 $56,380.0 $136,800.0
Ste. Genevieve County 11 17,887 $61,746.0 $171,100.0
Dekalb County 12 11,872 $58,433.0 $125,000.0
Clay County 13 246,480 $72,047.0 $185,700.0
Boone County 14 179,704 $58,740.0 $198,700.0
Lafayette County 15 32,697 $62,076.0 $154,300.0
Holt County 16 4,374 $46,442.0 $88,900.0
Warren County 17 35,090 $64,735.0 $184,900.0
Chariton County 18 7,449 $51,545.0 $100,700.0
Perry County 19 19,227 $56,861.0 $151,900.0
St. Louis County 20 996,179 $68,661.0 $206,700.0
Johnson County 21 53,948 $56,440.0 $163,300.0
Franklin County 22 103,629 $60,129.0 $171,900.0
Christian County 23 87,324 $64,442.0 $182,800.0
Montgomery County 24 11,414 $52,123.0 $120,700.0
Jefferson County 25 224,777 $67,606.0 $167,700.0
Nodaway County 26 22,199 $46,303.0 $126,600.0
Callaway County 27 44,944 $59,835.0 $156,900.0
Caldwell County 28 9,052 $51,451.0 $109,700.0
Linn County 29 12,004 $51,150.0 $92,600.0
Ralls County 30 10,258 $54,194.0 $134,700.0
Cape Girardeau County 31 78,834 $53,776.0 $162,400.0
Greene County 32 291,574 $47,053.0 $151,300.0
Ray County 33 22,900 $65,303.0 $139,800.0
Livingston County 34 14,969 $50,818.0 $111,800.0
Atchison County 35 5,180 $51,625.0 $90,400.0
Pulaski County 36 52,359 $58,426.0 $160,700.0
Cooper County 37 17,522 $53,003.0 $150,800.0
Camden County 38 45,823 $53,520.0 $213,200.0
Jackson County 39 700,733 $56,960.0 $157,200.0
Saline County 40 22,932 $47,585.0 $114,600.0
Marion County 41 28,572 $54,277.0 $129,000.0
Stone County 42 31,875 $51,476.0 $185,900.0
Monroe County 43 8,630 $43,422.0 $119,200.0
Macon County 44 15,154 $44,696.0 $100,500.0
Worth County 45 2,001 $47,500.0 $71,200.0
Polk County 46 32,031 $47,614.0 $141,600.0
Newton County 47 58,288 $52,067.0 $131,800.0
Sullivan County 48 6,163 $44,056.0 $75,600.0
Daviess County 49 8,294 $52,143.0 $114,600.0
Moniteau County 50 15,907 $57,012.0 $138,900.0
Miller County 51 25,369 $47,964.0 $140,500.0
Randolph County 52 24,769 $50,440.0 $108,600.0
Taney County 53 55,563 $47,860.0 $149,900.0
Carter County 54 6,085 $42,403.0 $135,800.0
Phelps County 55 44,587 $44,987.0 $146,200.0
Bates County 56 16,282 $46,733.0 $119,600.0
Webster County 57 39,127 $55,827.0 $152,500.0
Pike County 58 18,158 $44,920.0 $96,600.0
Scott County 59 38,538 $46,310.0 $113,200.0
Pettis County 60 42,421 $49,315.0 $128,900.0
Shelby County 61 5,975 $43,809.0 $71,700.0
Mercer County 62 3,623 $50,030.0 $85,300.0
Putnam County 63 4,746 $48,833.0 $89,300.0
Buchanan County 64 87,904 $51,933.0 $126,000.0
Lewis County 65 9,898 $45,118.0 $88,200.0
Madison County 66 12,176 $47,984.0 $120,000.0
Carroll County 67 8,723 $51,414.0 $93,400.0
St. Francois County 68 66,653 $46,307.0 $118,000.0
Benton County 69 19,305 $41,751.0 $122,600.0
Audrain County 70 25,336 $44,699.0 $89,200.0
Douglas County 71 13,335 $43,714.0 $127,300.0
Gentry County 72 6,576 $46,774.0 $86,200.0
Bollinger County 73 12,181 $45,140.0 $113,600.0
Harrison County 74 8,427 $40,615.0 $75,300.0
Adair County 75 25,468 $42,301.0 $123,500.0
Clark County 76 6,783 $45,842.0 $96,800.0
Scotland County 77 4,923 $47,708.0 $100,300.0
Grundy County 78 9,885 $46,885.0 $101,100.0
Barry County 79 35,615 $45,811.0 $127,400.0
Schuyler County 80 4,550 $44,420.0 $81,300.0
Vernon County 81 20,560 $43,910.0 $102,200.0
Laclede County 82 35,680 $46,582.0 $116,600.0
Henry County 83 21,854 $47,500.0 $115,600.0
Jasper County 84 120,528 $49,155.0 $124,200.0
Morgan County 85 20,438 $41,477.0 $150,100.0
St. Louis City 86 304,709 $45,782.0 $143,700.0
Barton County 87 11,732 $44,510.0 $91,900.0
Dent County 88 15,518 $42,714.0 $104,900.0
Shannon County 89 8,207 $36,229.0 $119,900.0
Iron County 90 10,150 $40,082.0 $87,100.0
Maries County 91 8,791 $48,276.0 $145,400.0
Oregon County 92 10,561 $32,766.0 $98,600.0
Dallas County 93 16,841 $40,404.0 $131,000.0
St. Clair County 94 9,455 $39,000.0 $95,100.0
Stoddard County 95 29,255 $42,761.0 $103,600.0
Mcdonald County 96 22,882 $42,876.0 $102,200.0
Lawrence County 97 38,241 $44,060.0 $115,300.0
Howell County 98 40,130 $39,482.0 $114,600.0
Wayne County 99 13,058 $38,018.0 $93,200.0
Wright County 100 18,256 $36,711.0 $109,100.0
Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2022. This is our ninth time ranking the best counties to live in Missouri.

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.