THE 10 GAYEST States In America For 2020

Here’s a look at the States in America with the most pride.

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Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the gayest states in America.

Gayest States In America Map

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Today, more Americans identify as being gay than ever before. According to research, which asked actual Americans if they identify as LGBTQ, 4.5%, or about 1 in every 25 Americans says they are gay. That number has gone up over time — more and more Americans are coming out as gay.

We’ve previously taken a look at the Gayest Cities in America and, to no one’s surprise, San Francisco checked in as the gayest city. What was surprising, to us at least, was the relatively low percentage of households that reported to the Census as gay in San Francisco — only ~2%.

Which got us thinking, if the gayest city in the country has a gay population that small, how small must the gay population be across America? Turns out, pretty small according to the census — only about 0.5% of households are male-male or female-female. But what states lead the pack when it comes to the gay population? Some parts of the country are more gay than others. States that are more liberal, and that are on the east and west coasts skew more gay. And as you might expect, the upper midwest and the south skew less gay.

What in the what?

The bottom of the overall list (25-50) is no surprise as a bunch of Midwestern states and the South populate the bottom half (At least people don’t report living in same sex households there, we’d imagine the % of the population that is gay is pretty consistent everywhere). But what’s up with the top states? And why is California not number 1?

Follow along as we break it down the states with the largest same sex population or feel free to check out some of other research:

The 10 Gayest States In America For 2020

1. Nevada

Nevada|Nv, NV

Total Households: 1,075,930
Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 6)
Percent Gay: 0.5%
More On Nevada: Photos | Rent

The state of Nevada ranks as the gayest in America this year. Nevada’s gay population has also increased dramatically – same sex couple households is up 43% since the last census.

Currently, Nevada’s gay population is 0.5%. Now, you might think Las Vegas would have the most gay Americans in Nevada, but Reno and Las Vegas are virtually tied when it comes to the percentage of gay residents. Although, you could make a case that Las Vegas has more gay people within its city limits at any given time.

Reno was actually called the Queerest Little City in the World by a leading author, who cited. The book is pretty interesting, and it talks about how the California Gold Rush on the Nevada border in Reno meant men outnumbered women 23-1, so men danced with one another and dressed like women. It was so popular Nevada actually banned cross dressing for a while.

The 5 Star Saloon — Oldest Continuously Operating Gay/LGBTQ Bar in the State of Nevada is in Reno as well. And The Reno Gay Rodeo was a pioneering transnational LGBTQ event that brought the idea of a “gay” rodeo to the American mainstream. It was the first rodeo created by and participated in by LGBTQ individuals in both Reno and Nevada

Incidentally, Reno has always been a rebellious city – it’s actually the divorce capital of the world, and it was the first city to allow gambling in America, in 1931.

2. California

California|Ca, CA

Total Households: 12,965,435
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Percent Gay: 0.49%
More On California: Photos | Rent

We’re going to move on to our next gayest state in our fine nation, which is California. In California 0.49% of the households are gay. There are several major areas where the LGBT community in California congregates, including the Palm Springs area, West Hollywood area of Los Angeles, and San Francisco.

Los Angeles ranks 8th highest in terms of number of same sex couples per household. The Palm Springs region, which includes the communities of Rancho Mirage, Desert Hot Springs and has a very large gay community, and in fact, has an entirely LGBT city council. Palm Springs has the nation’s 5th highest number of same-sex households at 8%. Former mayor Ron Oden estimated that about a third of Palm Springs is gay.

And of course, we could spend an entire video just talking about the history of the LGBT community in San Francisco 6.2% gay. The city itself has, among its many nicknames, the nickname “gay capital of the world”, and has been described as “the original ‘gay-friendly city'”. The Castro District is the center of the gay community in San Francisco.

Now, there’s a long list of well known and not so well known LGBT sports people who have inspired millions across the country. Many of them are from California. Tennis player Biliie Jean King was born in Long Beach. Olympic gold diving gold medalist Greg Louganis is from El Cajon. NBA player Jason Collins was born in Northridge – he was the first openly gay athlete to play in any of america’s 4 major sports. Robbie Rogers was America’s first ever US Mens national team soccer player to come out as gay. He was born in Rancho Palos Verdes. .

3. Delaware

Delaware|De, DE

Source: Public domain

Total Households: 357,765
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 3)
Percent Gay: 0.47%
More On Delaware: Photos | Rent

Our next gayest state in America is Delaware. In Delaware, the estimated gay population is 0.47%. Delaware is actually the third fastest growing state for gay americans. Since the last census was taken in 2010, Delaware’s same sex couple households has gone up by 41%.

Delaware State law bans discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, and the state has legally banned the practice of conversion therapy on minors since July 2018. Delaware is frequently referred to as one of the United States’ most LGBT-friendly states, and a majority of Delawareans support same-sex marriage.

4. Rhode Island

Rhode-Island|Ri, RI

Total Households: 410,885
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 3)
Percent Gay: 0.47%
More On Rhode Island: Photos | Rent

Still on the coast is the fourth most LGBT friendly state in the country — Rhode Island.

0.47% of the population reported as gay in Little Rhody — what a cute nickname. Woonsocket seems to be the center of the gay population, while Providence clocks in towards the top also.

5. New York

New-York|Ny, NY

Total Households: 7,316,537
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Percent Gay: 0.46%
More On New York: Photos | Rent

Moving on, we come to our next gayest state in America, where 0.46% of households say they are gay — New York. New York City has less same sex households as it did back in the 1990s. Other cities with a high number of gay residents are Mohawk and Walden.

Wikipedia says NYC has one of the largest LBGTQ populations in the world. One leading author said the Gay and lesbian culture is as much a part of New York’s basic identity as yellow cabs, high-rises, and Broadway theater New York City was home to the 1969 Stonewall Riots at the Greenwich Village Inn, located in the gay district of Manhattan. These were a series of spontaneous and sometimes violent protests against the New York City police, which the gay community felt was discriminating against them, since in the 50s and 60s, gays were not welcomed into many establishments.

These protests led to gay activist organizations being formed in New York, and a year later, the world’s first gay pride marches and celebrations were held in New York City.

New York City also has the largest transgender population in the United States, estimated at 50,000 people, concentrated in Manhattan and Queens.

6. Florida

Florida|Fl, FL

Total Households: 7,621,760
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 2)
Percent Gay: 0.45%
More On Florida: Photos | Rent

Sticking out of the east coast like a sore thumb out in the big gay ocean is Florida, the sixth gayest state.

Looking for some gay things to do in Florida? Check out some of the great hotels, restaurants, and clubs. So basically just stuff everyone does in Florida.

Some of the gayer cities in the Sunshine State include Wilton Manors and Oakland Park.

7. Arizona

Arizona|Az, AZ

Total Households: 2,524,300
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 1)
Percent Gay: 0.42%
More On Arizona: Photos | Rent

One of the biggest states not named California in the top ten gayest is Arizona where 0.42% of households are gay.

Aptly named Carefree ranks as the gayest in Arizona with 2.81% of households (Out of only 1,850) are gay.

8. Massachusetts

Massachusetts|Ma, MA

Source: Public domain

Total Households: 2,601,914
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 3)
Percent Gay: 0.42%
More On Massachusetts: Photos | Rent

Moving on, we come to our eighth gayest state in America, Massachusetts, where they gay population is 0.42%. Northampton and Easthampton. Boston is the 6th gayest major city in America.

Massachusetts also just passed a bill that would ban conversion therapy for LGBT teens, which would make the state the 16th in the union to do so.

Former congressman from Newton, Barney Frank was an openly gay state representativ

9. New Mexico

New-Mexico|Nm, NM

Source: Public domain

Total Households: 775,651
Rank Last Year: 9 (No Change)
Percent Gay: 0.4%
More On New Mexico: Photos | Rent

Things can get pretty hot and sweaty and gay out in the desert, which makes New Mexico a gay destination apparently

There are some 3,438 gay households here out of 750k, good for a number in the 0.4% range.

The gayest place in New Mexico is Grants for those playing at home.

10. Oregon

Oregon|Or, OR

Source: Public domain

Total Households: 1,591,835
Rank Last Year: 12 (Up 2)
Percent Gay: 0.38%
More On Oregon: Photos | Rent

We’re going to move onto our next gayest state in the US, Oregon. Here, the gay population is 0.38%, and growing. The number of same sex couple households has increased by more than 30% in the last ten reporting years.

Portland leads the way in Oregon, for the number of gay residents. In fact, Portland is the 2nd most gay major city in America, where an estimated 1 in 19 residents is LGBT. Portland is so gay that the equal sign is seen more frequently here on car bumpers than on math tests. Cottage Grove and Troutdale are also popular cities for gays in Oregon.

Now the LGBT culture in Portland has such a long and storied history that there’s a wikipedia page devoted to the topic. The Burnside Triangle is a notable section of downtown Portland. It has been a meeting place for Portland’s LGBT community since the 1960s. Portland is also one of the few spots in the world where LGBT (and straight) couples have easy access to surrogacy, IUI, IUF and egg donation

How We Calculated The Gayest States In America Per Capita For 2020

We’ve been ranking cities for over three years now and we always start our quests for data in the same manner — as stroll through the American Community Survey.

And, as we expected given that we’ve already written on the topic of gay places several time, we knew they wouldn’t disappoint.

This time we were directed to table B11009 from the 2014-2018 5yr ACS which reports on same sex unmarried households.

We looked at the following two criteria:

  • Unmarried-partner: Male householder and male partner
  • Unmarried-partner: Female householder and female partner

Next, we summed them up for each state and divided by the total number of households in the states. This gave us the number of gay households per capita. Finally, we ranked each state from the highest percentage of gay households to the lowest. You can download the data here.

What’s the gayest state in America? The state with the most pride ended up being Nevada.

The least gay state? Wyoming.

So There Are Your LGBT Friendly States For 2020

Okay, so that’s it – the gayest states in America. Hope this was informative. { first }} can take pride in its ranking this year as the gayest state in the US.

If you’re thinking of trying to move to gay community, then stick to a coast.

But, if that isn’t in the cards, there’s always a big city close by with a gayborhood or two that’ll welcome you in.

Here’s a quick look at the least Gay states on the list:

  1. Wyoming
  2. Montana
  3. Mississippi

For more reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Gayest States In America For 2020

Rank State % Gay
1 Nevada 0.495%
2 California 0.486%
3 Delaware 0.474%
4 Rhode Island 0.466%
5 New York 0.46%
6 Florida 0.453%
7 Arizona 0.421%
8 Massachusetts 0.415%
9 New Mexico 0.401%
10 Oregon 0.381%
11 Colorado 0.369%
12 Washington 0.364%
13 Hawaii 0.357%
14 Illinois 0.354%
15 Georgia 0.353%
16 Maine 0.341%
17 Texas 0.318%
18 Ohio 0.296%
19 Virginia 0.287%
20 Missouri 0.285%
21 Louisiana 0.282%
22 Pennsylvania 0.281%
23 New Jersey 0.279%
24 North Carolina 0.276%
25 New Hampshire 0.274%
26 Maryland 0.27%
27 Indiana 0.269%
28 Tennessee 0.268%
29 Minnesota 0.267%
30 Connecticut 0.258%
31 Alaska 0.245%
32 Michigan 0.245%
33 Utah 0.239%
34 Wisconsin 0.237%
35 South Carolina 0.237%
36 Idaho 0.236%
37 Kentucky 0.232%
38 West Virginia 0.225%
39 Oklahoma 0.216%
40 Vermont 0.215%
41 Kansas 0.207%
42 North Dakota 0.203%
43 Iowa 0.192%
44 Arkansas 0.182%
45 Nebraska 0.178%
46 Alabama 0.171%
47 South Dakota 0.14%
48 Mississippi 0.126%
49 Montana 0.122%
50 Wyoming 0.062%

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.