Western South Dakota's Only Ranch Station

The year’s best and worst states to raise a family

UNDATED –  It’s a new year, and with fresh starts in mind – hiring is up and the U.S. recently experienced a 50-year low in the national unemployment rate, for instance – the personal-finance website WalletHub today released its report on 2020’s Best & Worst States to Raise a Family as well as accompanying videos.
To determine the best states in which to put down family roots, WalletHub compared the 50 states across 50 key indicators of family-friendliness. The data set ranges from median family salary to housing affordability to unemployment rate.

South Dakota ranked 11th in the poll.

Best States for Families Worst States for Families
1. Minnesota 41. Arizona
2. Massachusetts 42. Georgia
3. North Dakota 43. South Carolina
4. Vermont 44. Oklahoma
5. New Hampshire 45. Arkansas
6. New York 46. Alabama
7. New Jersey 47. West Virginia
8. Nebraska 48. Louisiana
9. Connecticut 49. Mississippi
10. Washington 50. New Mexico

Best vs. Worst

  • Minnesota has the highest median family annual income (adjusted for cost of living), $89,217, which is 1.5 times higher than in New York, where it is lowest at $58,794.
  • Utah has the lowest divorce rate, 15.89 percent, which is 1.6 times lower than in Nevada, where it is highest at 26.10 percent.
  • New Hampshire has the lowest share of families living in poverty, 4.70 percent, which is 3.2 times lower than in New Mexico, where it is highest at 15.10 percent.
  • Mississippi has the lowest average annual cost of early childcare (as a percentage of median family income), 7.08 percent, which is 2.3 times lower than in Nebraska, where it is highest at 16.42 percent.
  • Maine has the fewest violent crimes (per 1,000 residents), 1.12, which is 7.9 times fewer than in Alaska, the state with the most at 8.85.   

To view the full report and your state’s rank, please visit:

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