I was approached by David, from Area Vibes, who wanted to write a guest post related to where to live (or not to) in America, based on the information collated on the Area Vibes website.
I have not used the site myself (nor received any endorsements or payments as this is currently an unsponsored blog), but from what I understand, the site uses various factors to ascribe a ‘livability score’ out of 100. This score, and the accompanying information, can then help anyone decide if a particular area would be suitable for them.
Below is the guest post where David shares some information about the worst places to live in the US – I would love to hear what you think of the areas mentioned. Do you agree? Have you, or are you, living in one of the places listed? Would you look for this information about an area before you moved – and would you find it useful? Let me know your thoughts in a comment!
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America. It’s the land of the free. The home of the brave. A golden gateway of opportunity. It’s one of the most powerful and economically rich countries in the world. Living there should be one of the best things you could ever do, right?
Well, like any other place, there are always a few bad apples. That is, there are some areas in the US that aren’t really conducive to experiencing the very best life has to offer.
Here are some of the worst places to live in America, and more importantly, why they are the worst places to live. Various ratings are taken into consideration, including:
Whilst Bridgeport might be a nice place to live in terms of location and standard of living, you should also be aware that it’s probably best to have an extremely well paid job before moving here. Bridgeport is the most taxed location in the US. Consider somewhere like Cheyenne, Wyoming, where a family earning $75,000 will pay less than 4% tax on their income. In Bridgeport, this jumps to a staggering 22%.
Property taxes are also rather high. Earn over $100,000? Then you’ll be shelling out over $11,000 on property tax alone. Maybe this explains why Bridgeport has one of the highest unemployment rates at almost 12%.
The ‘Windy City’ hasn’t blown away all of the negative factors against living there sadly. It has a very high crime rate, coupled with similar unemployment levels. Private homes have suffered a spate of foreclosures, along with spending money on (and losing) the 2016 Summer Olympics bid.
Chicago maybe isn’t the best place to shop either. It has a sales tax rate of almost 10% – one of the highest in the country.
Namesake of the famous Simpson’s family hometown, the real Springfield doesn’t have a lot going for it right now. It has a poor education system – 1 in 4 children do not make it to graduation. It also has a high violent crime rate which is over double the state average.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Whilst it’s a tourist’s paradise, the harsh reality is that Las Vegas is not a very good place to live or bring up a family. It is suffering from a difficult economic period right now. With a declining tax revenue and state aid fund, the education system has felt the effects. It has one of the worst pupil/teacher ratios and is one of the lowest areas for per-pupil spending.
Camden, New Jersey
Recently voted across the board as one of the poorest cities in the US, Camden is not a good place to live for a multitude of reasons.
Take education. The budget is not adequate on a per-pupil basis. In 2012, the graduation level fell short of the state average of 86% to achieve a 49% rating. The national average is93% currently. More shocking, only 3 out of 900 SAT takers were certified as being ready for college.
It’s no picnic for adults either living in Camden. 40% of residents live below the poverty line, whilst crime rates are sky high. In 2012, there were over 2,500 violent crimes for every 100,000 people. This is 560% more than the national average! You actually have a 1 in 36 chance of being a victim to violent crime. Property related crime isn’t much better with a 1 in 11 chance.
Of course, every place will have its own benefits too. But it’s always handy to do a bit of research before moving to a new area. (Especially if that area is Camden!)
| Bio: David Hurley is a writer for Area Vibes, helping people find the best places to live in the US |
[Image source: nytimes.com, foxnews.com, 3.bp.blogspot.com & Wikipedia]