The 10 Best Counties To Live In Virginia For 2021


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

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2021. This is our seventh time ranking the best counties to live in Virginia.

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

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

Lucky for you, we're here to help you identify the best counties to live in the Old Dominion 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 Virginia, where would you go? To answer that we looked at crime, cost of living, and demographic data for all 133 counties in the state.

After the analytic dust settled, we identified the 10 best counties to live in Old Dominion for 2021.

Arlington County is the county to be when it comes to living the good life in Virginia. And you might want to avoid Galax City if you can -- at least according to the data.

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

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

The Best Counties To Live In Virginia For 2021

1. Arlington County

Arlington, VA

Biggest Place: Arlington

Population: 233,464
Median Income: $120,071 (4th best)
Median Home Price: $705,400.0 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 271.7% (11th best)
More on Arlington County: PhotosData

2. Falls Church City

Falls Church, VA

Biggest Place: Falls Church

Population: 14,128
Median Income: $127,610 (2nd best)
Median Home Price: $789,300.0 (best)
Unemployment Rate: 385.4% (39th best)
More on Falls Church City: PhotosData

3. Poquoson City

Poquoson, VA

Biggest Place: Poquoson

Population: 12,090
Median Income: $97,118 (10th best)
Median Home Price: $323,100.0 (18th best)
Unemployment Rate: 197.5% (2nd best)
More on Poquoson City: PhotosData

4. Goochland County

Biggest Place: Goochland

Population: 22,865
Median Income: $93,994 (12th best)
Median Home Price: $375,200.0 (10th best)
Unemployment Rate: 355.6% (32nd best)
More on Goochland County: Data

5. King George County

Biggest Place: King George

Population: 26,229
Median Income: $94,274 (11th best)
Median Home Price: $307,900.0 (20th best)
Unemployment Rate: 306.4% (16th best)
More on King George County: Data

6. Loudoun County

Leesburg, VA

Source: Public domain

Biggest Place: Leesburg

Population: 395,134
Median Income: $142,299 (best)
Median Home Price: $508,100.0 (6th best)
Unemployment Rate: 323.9% (26th best)
More on Loudoun County: PhotosData

7. Stafford County

Biggest Place: Aquia Harbour

Population: 146,773
Median Income: $111,108 (6th best)
Median Home Price: $346,100.0 (14th best)
Unemployment Rate: 372.0% (35th best)
More on Stafford County: Data

8. Fauquier County

Warrenton, VA

Biggest Place: New Baltimore

Population: 69,728
Median Income: $100,783 (9th best)
Median Home Price: $395,500.0 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 317.0% (2best)
More on Fauquier County: PhotosData

9. New Kent County

Biggest Place: New Kent

Population: 21,686
Median Income: $87,904 (18th best)
Median Home Price: $281,100.0 (27th best)
Unemployment Rate: 350.4% (30th best)
More on New Kent County: Data

10. Powhatan County

Biggest Place: Powhatan

Population: 28,815
Median Income: $89,090 (15th best)
Median Home Price: $279,200.0 (29th best)
Unemployment Rate: 236.2% (6th best)
More on Powhatan County: Data

How do you determine which Virginia county is the best?

To give you the best county in Virginia, 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 Virginia across each of the criteria from one to 133, 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 Virginia".

The result is some of the safest, quiet, and best counties to raise a family in the Old Dominion.

Read on to see why Arlington County is the best county, while Galax City is probably in contention for being the worst county in Virginia.

There You Have It - The Best Counties In Virginia To Call Home For 2018

It turns out living in Virginia 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 Virginia according to the data:

  1. Galax City
  2. Charlotte County
  3. Henry County

For more Virginia reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Counties In Virginia

County Rank Population Median Income Median Home Price
Arlington County 1 233,464 $120,071 $705,400.0
Falls Church City 2 14,128 $127,610 $789,300.0
Poquoson City 3 12,090 $97,118 $323,100.0
Goochland County 4 22,865 $93,994 $375,200.0
King George County 5 26,229 $94,274 $307,900.0
Loudoun County 6 395,134 $142,299 $508,100.0
Stafford County 7 146,773 $111,108 $346,100.0
Fauquier County 8 69,728 $100,783 $395,500.0
New Kent County 9 21,686 $87,904 $281,100.0
Powhatan County 10 28,815 $89,090 $279,200.0
Hanover County 11 105,537 $89,390 $282,900.0
York County 12 67,982 $92,069 $327,100.0
James City County 13 74,916 $87,678 $340,500.0
Albemarle County 14 107,405 $79,880 $356,100.0
Fairfax County 15 1,145,862 $124,831 $563,100.0
Botetourt County 16 33,343 $71,110 $227,700.0
Fluvanna County 17 26,594 $76,873 $234,700.0
Fairfax City 18 23,531 $116,979 $560,400.0
King William County 19 16,688 $66,987 $204,300.0
Alexandria City 20 157,613 $100,939 $572,900.0
Virginia Beach City 21 450,201 $76,610 $280,800.0
Frederick County 22 86,415 $78,002 $251,200.0
Gloucester County 23 37,222 $70,537 $230,000.0
Prince William County 24 461,423 $107,132 $382,400.0
Augusta County 25 75,079 $62,711 $214,000.0
Chesterfield County 26 343,551 $82,599 $241,200.0
Roanoke County 27 93,823 $68,948 $199,800.0
Craig County 28 5,110 $55,708 $165,800.0
Caroline County 29 30,381 $65,103 $206,000.0
Spotsylvania County 30 132,833 $88,628 $284,000.0
Clarke County 31 14,423 $80,026 $347,200.0
Henrico County 32 327,535 $70,307 $242,600.0
Bedford County 33 78,376 $64,199 $201,900.0
Chesapeake City 34 239,982 $78,640 $273,700.0
Prince George County 35 38,114 $71,912 $213,300.0
Lexington City 36 7,241 $42,632 $235,700.0
King And Queen County 37 7,042 $63,982 $183,200.0
Lancaster County 38 10,724 $53,711 $257,200.0
Williamsburg City 39 14,927 $57,463 $306,000.0
Salem City 40 25,317 $57,165 $181,900.0
Montgomery County 41 98,140 $57,977 $227,100.0
Isle Of Wight County 42 36,627 $73,991 $266,800.0
Culpeper County 43 51,101 $77,935 $298,900.0
Manassas Park City 44 16,986 $88,046 $308,000.0
Rockingham County 45 80,284 $61,864 $211,500.0
Suffolk City 46 90,093 $74,884 $254,400.0
Rockbridge County 47 22,570 $54,600 $199,600.0
Orange County 48 36,010 $71,548 $244,400.0
Rappahannock County 49 7,378 $74,284 $377,700.0
Northumberland County 50 12,190 $62,632 $292,600.0
Richmond County 51 8,884 $49,517 $180,300.0
Nelson County 52 14,831 $64,313 $235,000.0
Shenandoah County 53 43,224 $57,252 $213,200.0
Southampton County 54 17,880 $61,348 $178,500.0
Warren County 55 39,492 $69,116 $244,800.0
Staunton City 56 24,432 $52,611 $169,000.0
Charlottesville City 57 47,096 $59,471 $299,600.0
Floyd County 58 15,704 $51,521 $170,700.0
Fredericksburg City 59 28,622 $65,641 $367,200.0
Manassas City 60 41,174 $81,493 $324,600.0
Greene County 61 19,519 $67,398 $236,400.0
Campbell County 62 55,225 $49,664 $157,000.0
Madison County 63 13,170 $57,895 $257,900.0
Giles County 64 16,772 $54,520 $123,200.0
Middlesex County 65 10,675 $57,438 $261,900.0
Mathews County 66 8,788 $64,237 $226,300.0
Appomattox County 67 15,707 $58,696 $158,800.0
Louisa County 68 36,040 $60,975 $223,100.0
Amelia County 69 12,953 $57,946 $201,400.0
Amherst County 70 31,775 $52,888 $155,600.0
Winchester City 71 27,897 $58,818 $244,900.0
Hampton City 72 135,041 $56,287 $186,700.0
Highland County 73 2,204 $48,587 $173,900.0
Charles City County 74 7,014 $57,198 $167,900.0
Alleghany County 75 15,157 $47,673 $119,700.0
Covington City 76 5,598 $40,655 $72,900.0
Radford City 77 17,691 $36,297 $170,800.0
Wythe County 78 28,844 $49,364 $128,400.0
Colonial Heights City 79 17,428 $54,550 $171,700.0
Pittsylvania County 80 61,256 $47,690 $123,900.0
Franklin County 81 56,187 $56,254 $178,100.0
Washington County 82 54,071 $48,495 $151,800.0
Bland County 83 6,388 $48,531 $113,200.0
Pulaski County 84 34,182 $53,866 $149,500.0
Buena Vista City 85 6,484 $32,455 $126,600.0
Newport News City 86 179,673 $53,215 $194,000.0
Carroll County 87 29,801 $44,835 $112,900.0
Westmoreland County 88 17,751 $53,853 $199,100.0
Sussex County 89 11,377 $49,487 $125,800.0
Lunenburg County 90 12,282 $44,303 $119,500.0
Franklin City 91 8,147 $40,417 $164,100.0
Lynchburg City 92 80,569 $46,409 $160,100.0
Waynesboro City 93 22,140 $45,011 $174,100.0
Harrisonburg City 94 53,273 $46,679 $203,600.0
Dinwiddie County 95 28,485 $60,346 $168,300.0
Northampton County 96 11,885 $47,227 $176,800.0
Mecklenburg County 97 30,728 $43,207 $132,600.0
Brunswick County 98 16,520 $44,434 $112,200.0
Halifax County 99 34,552 $42,669 $116,100.0
Essex County 100 10,998 $51,954 $202,800.0

Talk To A Relocation Expert

Need help figuring out where to move? Email YouTube star Nick Johnson at [email protected].

It's $200 for a phone consultation, and you'll go over politics, weather, cost of living, schools, culture and more to discover which city is the PERFECT place for your family to move to.

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.

One thought on “The 10 Best Counties To Live In Virginia For 2021

  1. Having lived in Fauquier county, And Augusta county and Staunton And Roanoke and having travelled extensively in Virginia I can say with authority that the author is insane. If you love high taxes, and crime and terrible traffic and high cost of living follow his advice. Northern and eastern Virginia is a terrible place to live. I know I lived there.

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