Most Americans have never been to Virginia. However, as the people who live there know, Virginia is an awesome state.
But is it all roses? Definitely not. Just like any other state, Virginia has its trouble spots. This article aims to determine, using science, the absolute worst small towns to live in the Old Dominion. Don’t shoot the messenger, this is all using data.
After analyzing more than 149 of Virginia’s smallest cities, we came up with this list as the 10 worst small towns in Virginia where you’d never want to live:
So what is the worst small town to call home in Virginia for 2019? According to the most recent census data, Raven is the worst small town to live in Virginia.
Of course, many of these cities would rank highly if they were in other states, since Virginia has its stuff figured out.
Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers, or scroll to the bottom to see how your town ranked.
How do you decide if a place is lousy or not?
In order to rank the worst small towns to live in Virginia, we had to determine what criteria people like or dislike about a place. It isn’t a stretch to assume that people like low crime, solid education, things to do and a stable economy.
So we scraped the internet for those criteria, and it spit out the answer. Like magic.
How we determined the worst small towns to live in Virginia for 2019
We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using FBI crime data and the Census’s 2013-2017 American Community Survey, this is the criteria we used:
- Population Density (The lower the worse)
- Highest Unemployment Rates
- Low housing costs (meaning there’s no demand)
- Adjusted Median Income (Median income adjusted for the cost of living)
- Education (Number of high school dropouts)
- High Crime
We looked at cities with populations between 1,000 and 5,000 people, of which, there were a lot – 149 to be exact.
Additional note: We get the crime numbers from the FBI, which gets its crime numbers from the cities themselves. Dropout numbers are based on the adult population, not just the current graduation rates of teenagers.
This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased.
Rank Last Year: 2 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $69,200 (3rd worst)
Unemployment Rate: 14.5% (8th worst)
More on Raven: Data
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $87,200 (13th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 10.5% (24th worst)
More on Bassett: Data
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 3)
Median Home Value: $89,300 (15th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 3.4% (118th worst)
More on Mountain Road: Data
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $79,800 (9th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 8.6% (40th worst)
More on Pennington Gap: Data
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $62,400 (2nd worst)
Unemployment Rate: 13.5% (10th worst)
More on Appalachia: Data
Rank Last Year: –
Median Home Value: $86,800 (10th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 15.9% (6th worst)
More on Motley: Data
Rank Last Year: 14 (Up 7)
Median Home Value: $76,800 (6th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 10.8% (21st worst)
More on Chase City: Data
Rank Last Year: 18 (Up 10)
Median Home Value: $74,600 (5th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 5.2% (84th worst)
More on Victoria: Data
There You Have It – The Worst Small Towns In Virginia
If you’re analyzing teeny places in the Old Dominion with the worst economic situations, where there’s high crime and there’s not a lot to do, this is an accurate list.
If you’re curious enough, here are the best small towns to live in Virginia, according to science:
- Ravensworth (Pop. 2,220)
- Occoquan (Pop. 1,070)
- Hayfield (Pop. 4,266)
For more Virginia reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Virginia
- 10 Safest Places In Virginia
- 10 Best Cities For Singles In Virginia
- 10 Worst Cities In Virginia For 2017
Detailed List Of The Worst Small Towns In Virginia
|57||Woodlawn Cdp (Carroll County)||2,352|