Some of you might be asking yourself, at this very moment: is West Virginia a good place?
The answer is unequivocally yes… if you know where to locate the best places to live in West Virginia.
Lucky for you, we’re here to help you identify the best counties to live in the Mountain 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 West Virginia, where would you go? To answer that we looked at crime, cost of living, and demographic data for all 55 counties in the state.
After the analytic dust settled, we identified the 10 best counties to live in Mountain State for 2022.
The 10 Best Counties To Live In West Virginia For 2022
Jefferson County is the county to be when it comes to living the good life in West Virginia. And you might want to avoid Mingo County if you can — at least according to the data.
So if you’re thinking of making the move West Virginia, we’ve got you covered. Keep on reading for a detailed methodology.
Or, check out the best places to live in West Virginia and the cheapest places to live in West Virginia.
The Best Counties To Live In West Virginia For 2022
1. Jefferson County
Biggest Place: Charles Town
Median Income: $82,551.0 (best)
Median Home Price: $261,500.0 (best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.7% (15th best)
More on Jefferson County: Photos | Data
2. Putnam County
Biggest Place: Teays Valley
Median Income: $63,954.0 (3rd best)
Median Home Price: $175,700.0 (5th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.7% (6th best)
More on Putnam County: Photos | Data
3. Morgan County
Biggest Place: Bath (Berkeley Springs)
Median Income: $57,116.0 (4th best)
Median Home Price: $189,800.0 (3rd best)
Unemployment Rate: 6.2% (24th best)
More on Morgan County: Data
4. Mineral County
Biggest Place: Keyser
Median Income: $51,723.0 (12th best)
Median Home Price: $144,500.0 (7th best)
Unemployment Rate: 7.4% (34th best)
More on Mineral County: Photos | Data
5. Brooke County
Biggest Place: Weirton
Median Income: $48,168.0 (18th best)
Median Home Price: $97,200.0 (38th best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.8% (7th best)
More on Brooke County: Photos | Data
6. Berkeley County
Biggest Place: Martinsburg
Median Income: $65,286.0 (2nd best)
Median Home Price: $187,400.0 (4th best)
Unemployment Rate: 6.0% (23rd best)
More on Berkeley County: Photos | Data
7. Tucker County
Biggest Place: Parsons
Median Income: $47,527.0 (22nd best)
Median Home Price: $126,700.0 (13th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.1% (12th best)
More on Tucker County: Data
8. Ohio County
Biggest Place: Wheeling
Median Income: $48,056.0 (20th best)
Median Home Price: $127,600.0 (11th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.9% (2best)
More on Ohio County: Photos | Data
9. Monongalia County
Biggest Place: Morgantown
Median Income: $54,198.0 (6th best)
Median Home Price: $212,300.0 (2nd best)
Unemployment Rate: 6.6% (28th best)
More on Monongalia County: Photos | Data
10. Marion County
Biggest Place: Fairmont
Median Income: $52,856.0 (8th best)
Median Home Price: $122,700.0 (19th best)
Unemployment Rate: 5.7% (14th best)
More on Marion County: Photos | Data
Methodology: How do you determine which West Virginia county is the best?
To give you the best county in West 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 West Virginia across each of the criteria from one to 55, 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 West Virginia”.
The result is some of the safest, quiet, and best counties to raise a family in the Mountain State.
Read on to see why Jefferson County is the best county, while Mingo County is probably in contention for being the worst county in West Virginia.
Summary: The Best Counties In West Virginia To Call Home For 2018
It turns out living in West 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 West Virginia according to the data:
- Mingo County
- Mcdowell County
- Webster County
For more West Virginia reading, check out:
- Cheapest Places To Live In West Virginia
- Best Places To Retire In West Virginia
- Safest Places In West Virginia
- Richest Cities In West Virginia
Detailed List Of The Best Counties In West Virginia