Feb 12 - These 7 US cities offer the best of both worlds in Work/Life

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 3 months ago '06        #1
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RAZAH CUTS 6066 heat pts6066
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Feb 12 - These 7 US cities offer the best of both worlds in Work/Life
 

 
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Having a good quality of life isn’t just about how much money you make, or what kind of job you have — it’s also about what work-life culture is normalized in the city or town where you reside. Even a dream job can leave you miserable if everyone around you burns the candle at both ends, accepts losing precious free time on a tedious commute or can’t afford housing costs — let alone a home as nice as your richest neighbor’s.

To figure out where people are both getting good jobs and enjoying the fruits of that labor, MagnifyMoney ranked the 50 largest U.S. metropolitan areas to find the places where residents have the most balanced lifestyles.

The personal finance site used seven different metrics to build the ranking, including income inequality, average commute length and the percentage of the population that gets less than seven hours of sleep each night. MagnifyMoney also used a ratio of take-home pay to hours worked to measure if people were actually getting a good deal on their income.

Despite their reputation for grueling hours, affluent cities like New York City and San Francisco still had high ratios of pay to hours worked, meaning that the people there benefit from high regional incomes. But these cities also tended to fare poorly across other metrics, with punishing commutes and higher rates of sleep deprivation.

On the flip side, most of the cities that fared the best in the ranking tended to be good at everything — if not the top in any category.

Salt Lake City, for example, didn’t top the country in any of the metrics studied, but ranks in the top 10 for nearly every criterion. To learn more about what makes MagnifyMoney’s seven top cities for balance so appealing, read on. (Median income figures are according to 2016 census data.)


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7. Portland, Oregon
Median household income: $58,420
Average commute: 26.6 minutes
Standout quality: 71% of the population reports getting at least seven hours of sleep per night.

“Keep Portland Weird” is the city’s unofficial slogan, inspired by the Portland’s outdoorsy, politically progressive reputation. Portland also boasts one of the country’s largest urban parks, a strong foodie culture and a number of beloved local sports teams.

Portland offers the best of both worlds: an artsy city that also makes it easy to get outdoors.

Portland offers the best of both worlds: an artsy city that also makes it easy to get outdoors. Don Ryan/AP

6. Columbus, Ohio
Median income: $47,160
Average commute: 23.9 minutes
Standout quality: The cost of goods and services is about 4.6% lower than the national average.

Columbus is a young, diverse metropolis. Thanks in part to the presence of the Ohio State University’s main campus, roughly a fifth of the city call themselves millennials. College football is still a fixture of daily life, though the rise of the Short North Arts District has helped expand the city’s cultural offerings.

The Short North district in Columbus, Ohio, has attracted young residents who have filled the neighborhood with murals, bars and art galleries.
The Short North district in Columbus, Ohio, has attracted young residents who have filled the neighborhood with murals, bars and art galleries. AFP/Getty Images

5. Kansas City, Missouri
Median income: $47,490
Average commute: 22.8 minutes
Standout quality: Kansas City ranks near the top for both short commutes and low income inequality, and its residents spend just 19% of their income on housing.

Kansas City is a popular place to raise a family, and nearly a quarter of the population is under the age of 18. The city also has a little bit of something for everyone, from Mississippi riverboats and the Kansas Speedway to the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art and the American Jazz Museum.

From Nascar fans to jazz aficionados, Kansas City has something to offer everyone, particularly in the way of entertainment.
From Nascar fans to jazz aficionados, Kansas City has something to offer everyone, particularly in the way of entertainment. Ed Zurga/AP

4. Raleigh, North Carolina
Median income: $58,640
Average commute: 25.9 minutes
Standout quality: Nearly 57% of Raleigh residents report being in good or excellent health, the third highest proportion in the country.

Raleigh and nearby Durham are known as the so-called “research triangle” because of the concentration of top-notch colleges and universities, including Duke University. The area also plays host to more than 200 parks and some world class museums, including the North Carolina Museum of Art and the Contemporary Arts Museum.

Raleigh and nearby Durham are known as the “Research Triangle” because of their proximity to elite colleges and universities.
Raleigh and nearby Durham are known as the “Research Triangle” because of their proximity to elite colleges and universities. ESB Professional/Shutterstock

3. Minneapolis
Median income: $52,610
Average commute: 25.0 minutes
Standout quality: More than 58% of Minneapolis residents report being in good or excellent health, the highest rate in the country.

Minneapolis is more than just a mecca for good health: Your money goes far, with typical costs of goods and services about 4% lower than the national average. Plus, you arguably get two cities for the price of one; the Minneapolis metropolitan area includes both downtown Minneapolis and nearby St. Paul, the state’s capital.

Minneapolis is a culture hub, with nationally renown facilities including the Walker Art Center.

Minneapolis is a culture hub, with nationally renown facilities including the Walker Art Center. Jim Mone/AP

2. Salt Lake City
Median income: $50,350
Average commute: 22.3 minutes
Standout quality: For five out of seven categories (including health, income inequality and pay relative to hours worked) Salt Lake City ranks in the top 10 cities out of all 50

Salt Lake City is famous for its proximity to outdoor adventure: Having played host to the 2002 Winter Olympics, the city is within driving distance to a number of national parks and skiing facilities, including Park City. Locals report that the city is also getting more secular, despite the strong Mormon influence, with coffee shops and restaurants with liquor licenses opening more often.

Salt Lake City is best known for playing host to the Sundance Film Festival and the 2002 Winter Olympics.
Salt Lake City is best known for playing host to the Sundance Film Festival and the 2002 Winter Olympics. Brian Bahr/Getty Images

1. Grand Rapids, Michigan
Median income: $42,020
Average commute: 21.8 minutes
Standout quality: People in Grand Rapids spend just 18% of their income on housing, the second lowest rate in the country.

Grand Rapids residents tend to have lower incomes, and work relatively hard for their cash, but they also benefit from a low cost of living and cheap housing. What’s more, 56% of the population also reports being in good or excellent health, the ninth highest rate in the country.

One secret to Grand Rapids’ success? Along with the cheap housing, US News credits a booming health care industry to attracting young families, as well as strong neighborhood a.ssociations that promote community events. Grand Rapids is also something of a cultural hub, boasting its state’s only professional ballet company and the Beer City Ale Trail, a route that includes more than 40 craft breweries with tours and tastings.


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64 comments for "Feb 12 - These 7 US cities offer the best of both worlds in Work/Life"

 3 months ago '06        #2
Skateboard T 34 heat pts34
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Love Grand Rapids and Minneapolis. I’m too far west in VA to take a day trip to VA beach but I might head there for spring break.
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 3 months ago '04        #3
Hakim Cobain 4 heat pts
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Nice to see KC on this list...dope place to raise kids & not expensive at all. But I’d rather live in atl or Charlotte.
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 3 months ago '17        #4
Naga Sadow 7 heat pts
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I'll take Charlotte over Raleigh any day. Steele Creek area is nice and quiet with a lot of great neighbors from all different backgrounds and cultures who are all cool with each other. Low crime, especially compared to wast Charlotte and only 20 minutes away from Uptown where's things are popping. Hit Lake Wylie to relax or get into some fun in various locations. Plus if you want a nice romantic picnic Freedom Park is the move, especially the free Jazz in the Park concerts in the summer time. Plus they've been working on the local theme park Carowinds so you can have family fun there.
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 3 months ago '12        #5
daman729 27 heat pts27
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I knew Raleigh would make the cut.

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 3 months ago '15        #6
160z 1 heat pts
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614 north side, and 513 made the list. Every now and then I will have this arguement on here “buts it Ohio” and I ask n*ggas literally “what do you do in yo state that I don’t” crickets every trip. 2 cities less then 200 miles apart are 2 of the best places to be happy is what this says, legal weed on the way to. Cut all that hate on Ohio, you n*ggas is stressed out in those cities. I-71 out this bi*ch
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 3 months ago '04        #7
Hakim Cobain 4 heat pts
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 160z said:
614 north side, and 513 made the list. Every now and then I will have this arguement on here “buts it Ohio” and I ask n*ggas literally “what do you do in yo state that I don’t” crickets every trip. 2 cities less then 200 miles apart are 2 of the best places to be happy is what this says, legal weed on the way to. Cut all that hate on Ohio, you n*ggas is stressed out in those cities. I-71 out this bi*ch
Columbus reminds of a college town I could see how it’s fun.
 3 months ago '15        #8
160z 1 heat pts
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 Hakim Cobain said:
Columbus reminds of a college town I could see how it’s fun.
The Ohio state my g, but it’s way more to the city then that
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 3 months ago '09        #9
All Star Flow 3 heat pts
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Can’t wait to go to Portland
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 3 months ago '15        #10
Kno 
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The best is to be found outside the US. The world is bigger than Merica dont be afraid to use a passport and look for that quality of life elsewhere.
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 3 months ago '16        #11
postemupndunkit 
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 160z said:
614 north side, and 513 made the list. Every now and then I will have this arguement on here “buts it Ohio” and I ask n*ggas literally “what do you do in yo state that I don’t” crickets every trip. 2 cities less then 200 miles apart are 2 of the best places to be happy is what this says, legal weed on the way to. Cut all that hate on Ohio, you n*ggas is stressed out in those cities. I-71 out this bi*ch
I might have to move back to the 614 for real and Cincinnati is fu*king beautiful

What part of cbus is good to live at now? ��
 3 months ago '04        #12
mikielee213 52 heat pts52
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Virginia Beach?? well damn
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 3 months ago '14        #13
eazyebo 5 heat pts
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 mikielee213 said:
Virginia Beach?? well damn
Even tho the picture shows the Eastern Shore
 3 months ago '16        #14
BlackJew 
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 daman729 said:
I knew Raleigh would make the cut.

Brier creek n*gga!
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 3 months ago '04        #15
bw5011 5 heat pts
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 Naga Sadow said:
I'll take Charlotte over Raleigh any day. Steele Creek area is nice and quiet with a lot of great neighbors from all different backgrounds and cultures who are all cool with each other. Low crime, especially compared to wast Charlotte and only 20 minutes away from Uptown where's things are popping. Hit Lake Wylie to relax or get into some fun in various locations. Plus if you want a nice romantic picnic Freedom Park is the move, especially the free Jazz in the Park concerts in the summer time. Plus they've been working on the local theme park Carowinds so you can have family fun there.
I'll take Raleigh over Charlotte any day. Charlotte is a nice place to visit, Raleigh is a great place to live and work.
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 3 months ago '17        #16
DaQCKing 9 heat pts
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 Naga Sadow said:
I'll take Charlotte over Raleigh any day. Steele Creek area is nice and quiet with a lot of great neighbors from all different backgrounds and cultures who are all cool with each other. Low crime, especially compared to wast Charlotte and only 20 minutes away from Uptown where's things are popping. Hit Lake Wylie to relax or get into some fun in various locations. Plus if you want a nice romantic picnic Freedom Park is the move, especially the free Jazz in the Park concerts in the summer time. Plus they've been working on the local theme park Carowinds so you can have family fun there.

Depends on age. If I'm 20-27 I'm taking Raleigh. Just the ridiculous amount of colleges, not just Duke and UNC, that liter that area spells out alot to do for someone in that age range. Charlotte for raising a family in a nice size, expanding city. The school system while not the greatest, is far from the worse. Panthers. Hornets. Decent night life. Parks galore. You are practically 3 hours from a beach or mountain. Good weather also.

I'm born and raised in Charlotte btw
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 3 months ago '04        #17
bw5011 5 heat pts
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 BlackJew said:
Brier creek n*gga!
You're not to far away...

You hang out on Glenwood South? You smoke cigars? I wonder how many of us on here are in this area.
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 3 months ago '04        #18
bw5011 5 heat pts
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They should have mentioned research triangle park and the crazy amount of tech companies there. It's the silicon valley of the east. This area has a lot to offer.
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 3 months ago '10        #19
eightytyson06 39 heat pts39
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I used to go to school in grand rapids with it only been a few years ago it changed a lot
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 3 months ago '17        #20
Naga Sadow 7 heat pts
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 DaQCKing said:
Depends on age. If I'm 20-27 I'm taking Raleigh. Just the ridiculous amount of colleges, not just Duke and UNC, that liter that area spells out alot to do for someone in that age range. Charlotte for raising a family in a nice size, expanding city. The school system while not the greatest, is far from the worse. Panthers. Hornets. Decent night life. Parks galore. You are practically 3 hours from a beach or mountain. Good weather also.

I'm born and raised in Charlotte btw
I respect that. I'm in my 30s, married with a child so I'm set. As a Yankee Charlotte suits me because a lot of them moved down this way.
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