Americans change priorities when it comes to where they want to call home amid sky-high housing prices, and that revelation played a role in a city in the south devoting a Rocky Mountain destination as the top spot in the nation to live according to a new report .
Huntsville, Alabama, has been ranked No. 1 on the US News & World Reports annual list of best places to stay for 2022-2023, overturning Boulder, Colorado, which has been crowned for the past two years but is now No. 4 in the ranking of the 150 largest metropolitan areas in the country.
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The analysis established that Huntsville’s high score for affordable housing and quality of life pushed it to the front, despite the fact that she entered the lower end of the field for desirability. Part of what drove the city’s top rankings was its high air quality index score, which US News added as a factor for the first time this year.
Another city in Colorado, Colorado Springs, came in at No. 2 on the list, followed by Green Bay, Wisconsin, which jumped 18 places to No. 3 due to affordable prices. San Jose, California, took No. 5, running 31 places from last year’s rankings, due to its high quality of life score.
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“Much of the tremor we see at the top of this year’s rankings is a result of changing preferences,” said Devon Thorsby, real estate editor at US News. “People moving across the country today place more emphasis on affordable prices and quality of life than on the labor market, which in many ways goes in the back seat as the options for teleworking have become more standard.”
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Raleigh and Durham, North Carolina, round out the top ten, ranked No. 6 this year, followed by Fayetteville, Arkansas, as No. 7; Portland, Maine, No. 8; Sarasota, Florida, No. 9; and San Francisco, California, No. 10.