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Back Home Again in Indiana. Where the cities are some of the best in the country and the people are nice. And lucky for you, HomeSnacks is here to break down the top ten best cities in Indiana for Carmel.
Any good midwesterner knows that ‘The Hoosier State’ is not just any flyover state. There’s a reason their state’s motto is ‘Crossroads of America’ and that the state is constantly inviting people to ‘wander’ its backroads. Indiana has a lot to offer. You could get lost in its many idyllic towns, plush State Parks, and field after field of corn and soybeans.
Now, it wouldn’t be right if we didn’t mention Indiana’s large cities like Indianapolis and Evansville. Not only are these cities the anchor to Indiana’s rank as the 17th most populous state in the USA, they are the fastest growing in the state. And surprisingly folks, they did not make our top ten.
So, how did we determine the top ten best cities in Indiana for 2022?
Grab a fried tenderloin the size of your head, crank some John Mellencamp, and read on to see if your favorite Indiana city made the top ten.
Whether you’re a Purdue Boilermaker fan or a Indiana University Hoosier fan, or just a fan of great cities, great weather, and great people, there’s a city in Indiana for you.
And if you’re into that midwest, middle of nowhere Indiana vibe, you’re in luck. Most of Indiana’s top ten best cities for 2022 are just that.
What’s the best place to live in Indiana? Without further adieu, the best city in Indiana for 2022 is Carmel. We are not at all surprised. Carmel is beautiful, quaint, safe, and bursting at the seams with great people.
The competition was fierce to say the least. To see Indiana’s other best of the best cities, take a look below.
For more Indiana reading, check out:
- Best Counties To Live In Indiana
- Cheapest Places To Live In Indiana
- Best Places To Raise A Family In Indiana
The 10 Best Places To Live In Indiana For 2022
Three of the top ten best places to live in Indiana scored a perfect 10/10 on our SnackAbility scale and the #1 best place, Carmel led the way. Carmel is no stranger to these lists as this city wears many hats: it’s one of the richest places in The Hoosier State
Yes, it’s pretty fancy in Carmel. In fact, if you live anywhere near Indianapolis, you hop on the I-465 and make the trek to Carmel if you want to shop at the “fancy” stores. And while we agree that shopping at the Clay Terrace outdoor shopping center is quite an experience with its first class stores and restaurants, a dog park, and a kid play area, if you’re one of Carmel’s 99,130 residents, you know that there’s more to this city than a great pair of shoes. If you get the chance to live in Indiana’s best of the best, just know that you will be amongst a bunch of hard-working 40-year-olds who make the 2nd highest household income in the state at $115,109/year. Their motto is “A Partnership for Tomorrow,” and it seems to be working: Carmel has some of the best schools in Indiana.
Located just a stone’s throw north of Carmel, up “the 31,” is Indiana’s 2nd best place to live, Westfield.
Westfield’s low crime rate tells us a couple of things: one, this city in Hamilton County has the 11th lowest crime rate: it’s over 60% below the state and national average. To put this in perspective, there were only 400 crimes committed here last year, and a majority of them were property related. And, two, the lack of crime inside “The Crossroads of Indiana” has allowed this city to focus their funds and attention on jobs and education, and it shows: Westfield has the 9th best unemployment rate in Indiana and the poverty rate here is well below the national average at 5.8%. In terms of education, Westfield spends close to $11,000/student and it shows as they have the 12th lowest high school dropout rate in the state.
To get your hands on such a great place, you’re going to have to make at least $99,855/year. And if you want to buy a home in Westfield, you’ll be paying the 4th home price in the state, $281,400.
Go ahead and “Wander Indiana,” but when your done, Dyer will still be the 3rd best place to live in the state and one of the best places to buy your forever home if you make $86,117/year. And word on the street, you can find a real estate deal in the $200,000 range in one of the new subdivisions off of Towle Street.
And when you’re not busy making Indiana’s 11th highest income in one of the safest places in Indiana, a quick Saturday trip to South Bend to watch one of Indiana’s treasures, Notre Dame’s Fighting Irish or a weekend beach trip to Michigan City is not only super easy, it’s super fun.
The only downside to this great place in Lake County, the unemployment rate here is 3.2%: the 24th highest in the state. If Dyer can get some more of their residents to work, things could be better.
Indiana’s 4th best place to live, Munster, is The Hoosier State’s gateway to the north with Chicago to the west, Gary to the east, and Lake Michigan in the distance. Indiana’s “movers and shakers” live in Munster: the median age here is 44–one of the oldest populations in the state. So, when we discovered that Munster is also one of the top places for singles, we were not only surprised, we were impressed.
So we asked ourselves: what, besides location, makes Munster so great? Well, for one, the crime rate in Munster is 32% below the state average. The homes here are valued at $232,800 and you only have to make the median household income of $88,010/year if you want to meet the city’s cost of living head on. The schools in this small town of 22,604 residents get some of the most funding in Indiana and the high school dropout rate here is the 12th lowest in the state.
Zionsville consistently ranks as one of the best places to live in Indiana. On our list, Zionsville moved up five places to score the title “The 5th Best Place to live in Indiana for 2022.” This small town of 28,035 residents has one of the most idyllic Main Streets in the Hoosier State and one of the best farmers’ markets, too.
Quite frankly, you’d be pretty lucky to call Zionsville home, as the cost of living here is quite a bit higher than the national average. The homes in Zionsville are the most expensive in the Indiana, with the average home worth a whopping $406,800. We’re not elitists, nor are we saying that big homes means a better place to live; but, price reflects demand, and simply put, a lot of people want to live in Zionsville if they can afford it. Zionsville is after all one of the fastest growing cities in Indiana. However if you want to live comfortably here, you’re going to have to make $137,265/year.
Coming in as the 6th best place to live in Indiana is Brownsburg, a town that sits west of Indianapolis. The area is known for hosting the NHRA U.S. Nationals drag race and the Night Before the 500 event at the Lucas Oil Raceway. Both occasions bring a swath of visitors to the area each year, but we bet if they knew how good life is here, those tourists would plan to stay permanently.
For one, the affordable cost of living in Brownsburg means every penny of the $89,089 median household income its residents earn goes a lot further here than it would elsewhere. The city’s median home value of $211,900 being a prime example.
On top of that, parents who move to this town of 26,560 can say goodbye to limiting their home search to just one area with good schools. Practically all the education facilities here earn high ratings from GreatSchools, ranging from 8/10 to 10/10.
If you didn’t grow up heading to Deer Creek to hear the latest music in Indiana’s 7th best place to live, Noblesville, you missed out. And while Noblesville might be home to Indiana’s largest amphitheater and some pretty amazing, smart midwesterners, it’s the numbers that really make this noble gem shine.
First off, over half the city’s 64,430 residents have some type of college degree. To keep up with the nobility and the city’s cost of living, you’re going to have to make a median household income of $85,314/year because homes here cost $230,100. Noblesville is after all, one of the richest places in Indiana.
But, if you’re not ready to go all in, rent in Noblesville is below the state average at $1,041/month and this is a great way to get your feet wet without breaking your bank. And speaking of banks, you and your money will be safe here. Nobleville’s crime rate is 60% below the national average.
Located off U.S. Route 41 in Northern Indiana, St. John is the 8th best place to live in the state. It is also the third city to score a perfect 10/10 on our SnackAbility scale with high marks in jobs, safety, and education.
This city in Lake County is no stranger to accolades and badges. In fact, CNN once ranked St. John one of the top 100 places to live in the United States; and, here they are again, in our headlines. This is why: St. John has the 5th highest home price in the state. Economically speaking, higher home prices generally mean higher incomes which, in turn, trickles down to better schools and safer streets. Folks, the household median income in St. John is the 4th highest in Indiana at $103,851/year. This median income combined with hard working school officials has helped produce one of the lowest high school dropout rates in the state. And parents, you can also rest easy knowing that your family is safe in St. John as the crime rate here is 75% below the state and national level making it one of the safest places in Hoosier-land.
Yes, they take safety pretty seriously. In fact, if we could give you one piece of advice in regards to living in St. John, don’t speed on their main thoroughfare, U.S. Route 41……
Lowell is located in northwestern Indiana about 50 miles south of Chicago. The city ranks as one of the best in Indiana thanks to solid scores on most quality of life metrics. The city has one of the most educated population in the state. Furthermore, it has top 10% scores for both safety and cost of living for 2022.
In terms of things to do, there are some awesome family friendly parks for you to take your kids, or yourself for lunch. Those include Freedom and Evergreen Park and lake. After that, you can grab a family meal at The Mason Jar or have a special night out without the kids at McVey’s Restaurant. If you want to go outside of the town proper, Harvest Tyme Farm Park is a fun weekend activity.
Cumberland is an outer ring suburb of Indianapolis about 15 miles east from the center of the city. It’s the 10th best town in Indiana according to our most recent analysis. The town offers a solid of cost of living for Indiana and top 10% finishes in safety and incomes.
Cumberland’s Park System has three main parks — National Road Park, Honors Park, and Lions Park. They provide family friendly and affordable things to do. If you’re looking for something to eat in town Sero’s Family Restaurant offers a family friendly, and delicious, atmosphere. And of course, you’re always a short drive away from Indy if you’re looking for a weekend activity.
Mapping The Best And Worst Places To Live in Indiana
The Pressing Question: Size
Before we even started to collect data, we had to answer a tough question: Is it fair to pit Indianapolis with a population of 869,387 against places with a population of 18?
We firmly decided no, that just isn’t fair.
So to create our ranking, we broke places to live into three tiers:
- Cities — Populations over 5,000
- Towns — Populations between 1,000 and 5,000
- Small Towns — Populations below 1,000
This left us with 110 cities, 213 towns, and 301 small towns.
We then decided, no matter how much anyone loves their town, the best cities to live in Indiana have more of everything and therefore you need to have over 5,000 people to truly be ‘the best’.
You can see those two top tens at the bottom of the post.
Methodology: How We Calculated The Best Cities To Live In Indiana
Now that we had our set of cities, it was time to rank them.
We ranked each place in Indiana across a number of criteria from one to 110, with one being the best.
We then took the average rank across all criteria, with the city posting the lowest overall score being crowned the winner of the title “Best Place To Live In Indiana”.
The criteria we looked at were:
- Median Home Values
- Median Income
- Population Density (Higher better)
- Unemployment Rate
- Commute Time
- Education Levels
- Health Insurance Coverage
- Poverty rates
After the dust settled, what was the best place to live in Indiana? That would be Carmel.
If your city or town isn’t among the top 10, jump down to the bottom of the post to see a detailed chart of the best places in Indiana.
Otherwise, buckle up for a ride down good living lane with Carmel at the end of the cul-de-sac.
Summary: The Best Places When It Comes To Living In Indiana
If you’re looking at areas in Indiana with the best economic situations, where there’s lower than average crime, and a lot to do, this is an accurate list.
Carmel made a strong showing to take in the overall number one spot for the best place to live in Indiana for 2022.
Best Towns To Live In Indiana
- Highland (Pop. 4,256)
- Battle Ground (Pop. 1,568)
- Haubstadt (Pop. 1,615)
- Meridian Hills (Pop. 1,762)
- Aberdeen (Pop. 1,771)
- Melody Hill (Pop. 3,623)
- Leo-Cedarville (Pop. 3,721)
- Taylorsville (Pop. 1,058)
- Trail Creek (Pop. 2,037)
- Georgetown (Pop. 3,152)
Best Small Towns To Live In Indiana
- Ulen (Pop. 139)
- Buck Creek (Pop. 154)
- Pottawattamie Park (Pop. 253)
- Woodlawn Heights (Pop. 67)
- Williams Creek (Pop. 373)
- Homecroft (Pop. 695)
- Country Club Heights (Pop. 115)
- River Forest (Pop. 29)
- New Goshen (Pop. 434)
- Spring Hill (Pop. 77)
If you’re curious enough, here are the worst places to live in Indiana according to the data:
- Anderson (Pop. 54,476)
- East Chicago (Pop. 28,044)
- Gary (Pop. 75,486)
For more Indiana reading, check out:
- Best Places To Retire In Indiana
- Richest Cities In Indiana
- Safest Places In Indiana
- Worst Places To Live In Indiana
Where Are The Best Places To Live In Indiana?