Best Salem Suburbs To Live For 2020

We analyzed over 26 places around Salem to identify the most kickass place to live.

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Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the best Salem suburbs.

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Big city living isn't for everyone--but at the same time, urban areas certainly have their perks.

There's the culture, the food, the arts, the food, the energy, and you know, the food. But there are drawbacks. There's traffic, expensive parking, expensive housing--pretty much, expensive everything, depending on which big city you're looking at.

But that's where the suburbs come in--they have all of the benefits of being near big cities, without actually having to be big cities.

Of course, not all suburbs of Salem are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado...

What's the best suburb of Salem? Sublimity ranks as the best suburb of Salem for 2020 based on the most recent Census and FBI data. If you happen to be a resident of Sublimity, you're probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

We'll tell you what makes each of these 10 Salem 'burbs better than the rest--but first, a bit about our methodology.

Note: This result may differ from our state wide data as we did not include commute times and crime for this analysis to allow for a larger selection of suburbs.
Or feel free to check out some more reading about Oregon:

The 10 Best Salem Suburbs To Live For 2020

Sublimity, OR

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 2,899
Rank Last Year: 2 (Up 1)
Median Income: $70,250
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 6.2%
More on Sublimity: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Sublimity is always mentioned as one of the best suburbs in the Salem area. We'll tell you the good about "Awesome Sublimity."

Everyone here is rich; families average $70,250 a year, which is the 3rd highest in the Salem region. And only 3.3% are out of work. Homes average more than $290,000 each.

Dundee, OR

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 3,219
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 2)
Median Income: $77,656
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 6.2%
More on Dundee: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Dundee is the second best 'burb we looked at near Salem for 2020.

It ranks 2nd for incomes in the area and only 4.29% of residents lack insurance, good for 4th best.

Canby, OR

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 17,527
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Income: $66,433
Unemployment Rate: 4.0%
Poverty Rate: 10.3%
More on Canby: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Here in Canby, it's really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you'll see in the Salem metro area.

The bad side? Schools are more crowded, and the cost of living puts a large part of the city out of reach for most families.

But price is based on demand and a lot of people want to live in Canby.

Wilsonville, OR

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 23,418
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 3)
Median Income: $69,043
Unemployment Rate: 4.1%
Poverty Rate: 11.0%
More on Wilsonville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Wilsonville ranks as the 4th best suburb of Salem for 2020.

You won't find many better places to raise your kids in the region than in Wilsonville and the schools are some of the best around.

Keizer, OR

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 38,479
Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 2)
Median Income: $62,560
Unemployment Rate: 5.7%
Poverty Rate: 11.7%
More on Keizer: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Coming in as the fifth best is Keizer.

Keizer gets kudos for having the 12th most expensive homes in the Salem area, where houses sell for an average of $235,900. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Turner, OR

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 2,284
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 3)
Median Income: $78,173
Unemployment Rate: 9.0%
Poverty Rate: 7.5%
More on Turner: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Turner is proud of its 6th place finish on this list. And here's why.

Most residents have great jobs and the unemployment rate sits at 8.99% which is 24th best in the area.

According to online reports, Turner is quickly becoming one of the more affluent suburbs in the Salem area, meaning you need to get in soon.

Silverton, OR

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 10,028
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 2)
Median Income: $63,810
Unemployment Rate: 7.4%
Poverty Rate: 10.4%
More on Silverton: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The 7th best suburb on our list goes to Silverton.

Silverton schools are some of the best in the region, and crime is really low. The cost of living makes it a lot more desirable for many families, especially first-time home buyers.

And, it's only 13.1 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

Review Of Silverton by HomeSnacks User

I love the cute town of Silverton Oregon. It's right next to Silver Falls State Park, a forested canyon with over ten waterfalls. It was nice to be in nature and, afterwards, to stop at the grocery store in town for a bite to eat.

Silverton is small and easy to navigate. The city park is great for kids and some of the buildings in old part of town have murals. The grocery store in town, Roth's, has an awesome deli where you can get delicious sandwiches.

Lafayette, OR

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 4,105
Rank Last Year: 14 (Up 6)
Median Income: $63,832
Unemployment Rate: 2.8%
Poverty Rate: 10.1%
More on Lafayette: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Lafayette is growing quickly, and for a good reason. Crime is far below average, and most residents are gainfully employed. Even the cost of living is reasonable.

A solid 8.96% of people lack insurance, good for 22nd in the area.

Review Of Lafayette by HomeSnacks User

Crime is normal, schools are pretty good! I love this town now, although I did not use to. The community here is amazing. It takes a village to raise a family and I have that here.

The community is amazing! But have a security system because there is a few town hoodlums who like to cause trouble.

Molalla, OR

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 9,082
Rank Last Year: 8 (Down 1)
Median Income: $61,185
Unemployment Rate: 4.5%
Poverty Rate: 15.4%
More on Molalla: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Is 'Everything Better In Molalla?'


It placed 9th on our list thanks to the fact that it's really expensive to live here, but the schools are great, so you get what you pay for in that regard.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 2,032
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 4)
Median Income: $64,306
Unemployment Rate: 10.0%
Poverty Rate: 7.3%
More on Carlton: Real Estate | Data

And rounding out the top ten for 2020 is Carlton.

This city is far above average in every category, and the best part? It's far more affordable than the other cities listed above. So, you get a big bang for your buck here.

How We Determined The Best Suburbs Around Salem for 2020

Figuring out the best suburbs around Salem was pretty simple; we just needed to list several things that people like, and then find out which cities have the most of those things.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible:

  • Low unemployment rate
  • High Median household incomes
  • Population density (lots of things to do)
  • High home values
  • A lot of college educated people
  • Low poverty
  • High rate of insured families

Then we used the newest American Community Survey data for 2014-2018 to research each suburb.

FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Salem.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 2,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 28 suburbs to evaluate around Salem.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 28 in each category, where 1 was the "best.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.

And finally, we crowned the city with the best quality of life index the "Best Suburb near Salem." We're lookin' at you, Sublimity. You can download the data here.

Read on below to learn more about what it's like to live in the best of the best. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from best to worst.

Welcome to the Best Salem 'Burbs of 2020

We said it once and we'll say it again--life in the big city isn't for everyone. At least not all the time.

So if you're hankering for some of the amenities of a larger city like Salem, but don't want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might just be for you.

For more Oregon reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Salem Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income
1 Sublimity, OR 2,899 $70,250
2 Dundee, OR 3,219 $77,656
3 Canby, OR 17,527 $66,433
4 Wilsonville, OR 23,418 $69,043
5 Keizer, OR 38,479 $62,560
6 Turner, OR 2,284 $78,173
7 Silverton, OR 10,028 $63,810
8 Lafayette, OR 4,105 $63,832
9 Molalla, OR 9,082 $61,185
10 Carlton, OR 2,032 $64,306
11 Corvallis, OR 57,213 $49,835
12 Stayton, OR 8,025 $57,269
13 Newberg, OR 23,167 $56,599
14 Dallas, OR 15,805 $56,169
15 Hubbard, OR 3,399 $56,184
16 Mcminnville, OR 33,662 $51,820
17 Albany, OR 52,736 $55,263
18 Jefferson, OR 3,270 $59,538
19 Dayton, OR 2,643 $59,350
20 Sheridan, OR 6,106 $48,449
21 Mount Angel, OR 3,502 $47,250
22 Independence, OR 9,556 $48,886
23 Aumsville, OR 4,058 $49,661
24 Monmouth, OR 10,131 $38,698
25 Gervais, OR 2,666 $67,692
26 Lebanon, OR 16,599 $41,818
27 Woodburn, OR 25,417 $46,690
28 Willamina, OR 2,412 $49,081

How Is Your Town In ?

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.