Buying a Home: The 10 Best Cities for Families

How We Rated the Cities

When you choose a city to raise your family, you don't want it just to have good schools or lots of parks -- but the best hospitals, safe neighborhoods, clean air, and quality child care too. In other words, you want it all. Child magazine took the following 18 criteria into account when evaluating 100 of the nation's most populous cities. The data came from U.S. government agencies and independent associations. We crunched the numbers based on a complex formula -- weighing some criteria such as air quality more heavily than others like the average commute time.

  • Number of pediatricians per capita
  • Proximity to a children's hospital
  • Immunization rates
  • Infant mortality rate
  • Air quality
  • Water quality
  • School spending
  • Pupil-Teacher Ratio
  • Availability of parks/green space
  • Nearby recreational opportunities
  • Average commute time
  • Number of sunny days
  • Average cost of a 3-bedroom home
  • Unemployment rate
  • Future job growth
  • Crime rate
  • Percentage of children under 5
  • Mandated minimum child care ratios

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