The 10 Worst Baltimore Suburbs For 2022

We used science and data to determine which Baltimore suburbs are the real pits.

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Not everyone is cut out for city life. Some people would prefer to live in the cities and towns that surround Baltimore.

So the question arises, do the suburbs maintain a semblance of the larger-than-life appeal of their more famous neighbor?

Today, we'll use science and data to determine which Baltimore 'burbs need a little tender loving care - the sore thumbs of the Baltimore area if you will. Realistically, you can't expect all the suburbs to live up to Baltimore proper, although University Park certainly tries.

Of course, not all suburbs of Baltimore are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones..

We examined the 19 biggest suburbs of Baltimore to find out the worst places to live. And while you won't necessarily find them on the worst places to live in Maryland lists, these ten places are a little too far downwind of Baltimore in terms of quality of life.

What's the worst suburb of Baltimore? Bladensburg ranks as the worst suburb of Baltimore for 2022 based on the most recent Census and FBI data.

Read on to see how we determined the places around Baltimore that need a pick-me-up. And remember, don't blame the messenger.

Or, if you're thinking of moving to elsewhere in Maryland check out the best places in Maryland overall or the worst.

And remember, there are some good places to live around Baltimore too.

Editor's Note: If you see a slight difference between the worst in state rankings and this suburb ranking, it's because of the methodology. We needed a way to include more places, so we eliminated crime and commute times as criteria for this analysis.

For more Maryland reading, check out:

The 10 Worst Baltimore Suburbs To Live For 2022

We'll get the ball rolling with Bladensburg, the absolute worst place to live around Baltimore according to the data.

And in the world of worst rankings, Bladensburg beat the competition pretty handily thanks to scoring in the bottom 15% in three major categories. Income is the worst in the Baltimore area, and to make matters worse, the city ranks 6th worst when it comes to home values.

But hey, at least it's cheap to live there. But there's a reason for that... it's Bladensburg.

You won't feel bad about not having a great income for the area, there aren't a bunch of places to spend your money anyway.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 9,428
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $50,390 (lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 12.4% (highest)
Median Home Value: $277,400 (6th lowest)
More on Bladensburg:  Data | Photos

Bladensburg, MD

Source: Public domain

Welcome to Greenbelt. Home to KMart, Big Lots, and a lot of gas stations.

This city is 25.7 miles to Baltimore. Income levels here are the 6th lowest in the metro area, where families bring in about $71,744 a year, which doesn't go a long ways even on a shoestring budget.

But on the bright side, there are a lot of fast food joints in the area.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 23,253
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 4)
Median Income: $71,744 (6th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 7.4% (4th highest)
Median Home Value: $225,900 (2nd lowest)
More on Greenbelt:  Data | Photos

Greenbelt, MD

Back up the highway we go for the third worst Baltimore suburb you can live in. You might have expected to see Aberdeen on here. While the cost of living is low, your entertainment and work options are limited. And that's an understatement.

In terms of numbers, it's in the worst 15% for insurance, and the adult high school drop out rate is poor compared to other Baltimore suburbs.

But at least there are nice parks to bring the kids during the day.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 15,904
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Income: $66,481 (3rd lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 3.0% (15th highest)
Median Home Value: $192,400 (lowest)
More on Aberdeen:  Data | Photos

Aberdeen, MD

If you live in Landover Hills, most likely you struggle to make ends meet every month. It ranks as the 7th lowest Baltimore suburb when it comes to residents making money.

Not only that, but this is the 3rd worst unemployed suburb you can live in if you choose to live near Baltimore. Remember, we looked at 19 cities for this study.

Landover Hills is about 29.0 miles to downtown.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 2,043
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Median Income: $73,750 (7th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 7.6% (3rd highest)
Median Home Value: $248,200 (5th lowest)
More on Landover Hills:  Data

Westminster has the distinction of being a Baltimore suburb. Which means that's about all it has going for it.

All snarkiness aside, Westminster has the 3rd lowest home values in the metro Baltimore area, where the median price is $241,600. To put that into perspective, in University Park, the median income is $154,896, which is the best in the area.

Westminster has an unemployment rate of 4.97% which ranks 9th worst.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 18,649
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 1)
Median Income: $64,399 (2nd lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 5.0% (9th highest)
Median Home Value: $241,600 (3rd lowest)
More on Westminster:  Data | Photos

Westminster, MD

Riverdale Park has 7,216 residents that probably know it's a pretty crummy place to live when you look at the data. (Or, if you've ever been there, you don't need to look at the data.)

Incomes are towards the bottom and the poverty rate sits at 10.70772708009606%.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 7,216
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 5)
Median Income: $84,695 (11th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 4.0% (13th highest)
Median Home Value: $340,900 (12th lowest)
More on Riverdale Park:  Data | Photos

Riverdale Park, MD

Ah, New Carrollton. You rank as the 7th worst place to live around Baltimore.

It's the place with the 2nd most out of work residents in the Baltimore metro area (9.68%).

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 12,925
Rank Last Year: 7 (No Change)
Median Income: $70,776 (5th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 9.7% (2nd highest)
Median Home Value: $287,000 (8th lowest)
More on New Carrollton:  Data | Photos

New Carrollton, MD

College Park is a city about 27.3 miles from Baltimore, but Baltimore probably wishes it was further away. It ranks as the 8th worst burb for 2018.

You'd be hard pressed to find a worse place to live. College Park has the 10th most uninsured people, 4th worst incomes, and has the 8th highest unemployment rate (5.01%) in the entire Baltimore metro area.

Homes only cost $345,800 for a reason. That's cheap for Baltimore standards.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 32,221
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Median Income: $68,825 (4th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 5.0% (8th highest)
Median Home Value: $345,800 (13th lowest)
More on College Park:  Data | Photos

College Park, MD

If you absolutely have to live near Baltimore, then Hampstead might be a place for you to consider as it's only the 9th worst Baltimore suburb.

About 7.41% of residents are out of work.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,403
Rank Last Year: 9 (No Change)
Median Income: $75,392 (8th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 7.4% (5th highest)
Median Home Value: $245,700 (4th lowest)
More on Hampstead:  Data | Photos

Hampstead, MD

Source: Public domain

Rounding out the ten worst Baltimore suburbs to call home is Laurel.

Located 19.5 miles outside the city, Laurels is a real pit when you look at the data. Its residents have the 6th highest unemployment rate (5.68%), and poverty is far above the area average.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 25,734
Rank Last Year: 13 (Up 3)
Median Income: $80,255 (9th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 5.7% (6th highest)
Median Home Value: $281,500 (7th lowest)
More on Laurel:  Data | Photos

Laurel, MD

Methodology: Determining The Worst Suburbs Around Baltimore for 2022

To figure out how bad a place is to live in, we only needed to know what kinds of things people like and then decide what cities have the least amount of those things.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent American Community Survey data from 2016-2020, this is the criteria we used:

  • High unemployment rate
  • Low median household incomes
  • Low population density (no things to do)
  • Low home values
  • A lot of high school drop outs
  • High poverty
  • High rate of uninsured families

FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Baltimore.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 2,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 19 suburbs to evaluate around Baltimore.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 19 in each category, where 1 was the "worst".

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.

And finally, we crowned the city with the worst quality of life index the "Worst Suburb near Baltimore." We're lookin' at you, Bladensburg. You can download the data here.

Read on below to learn more about what it's like to live in the worst of the worst. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from worst to best.

Summary: The areas around Baltimore where the dream is more of a nightmare for 2022

Well there you have it -- the worst of the 'burbs surrounding Baltimore with Bladensburg casting itself ahead of the pack.

As we mentioned earlier, the suburbs around Baltimore aren't all bad. University Park takes the cake as the best place to live around Baltimore.

  • University Park
  • Mount Airy
  • Sykesville

For more Maryland reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Worst Baltimore Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income Median Home Values
1 Bladensburg 9,428 $50,390 $277,400
2 Greenbelt 23,253 $71,744 $225,900
3 Aberdeen 15,904 $66,481 $192,400
4 Landover Hills 2,043 $73,750 $248,200
5 Westminster 18,649 $64,399 $241,600
6 Riverdale Park 7,216 $84,695 $340,900
7 New Carrollton 12,925 $70,776 $287,000
8 College Park 32,221 $68,825 $345,800
9 Hampstead 6,403 $75,392 $245,700
10 Laurel 25,734 $80,255 $281,500
11 Hyattsville 18,267 $80,618 $355,000
12 Berwyn Heights 3,256 $115,750 $325,100
13 Glenarden 6,158 $87,917 $297,400
14 Annapolis 39,321 $87,897 $414,000
15 Manchester 4,752 $91,723 $291,100
16 Bowie 58,158 $116,796 $350,000
17 Sykesville 3,948 $110,335 $353,800
18 Mount Airy 9,439 $123,750 $387,800
19 University Park 2,653 $154,896 $495,600

How Is Your Town In ?

Editor's Note: This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don't freak out we updated this article for 2022. This is our ninth time ranking the worst suburbs around Baltimore.

About Nick Johnson

Nick Johnson earned his masters in Business Administration from the Drucker School At Claremont Graduate University. He has written for 39 publications across the country and ran the media relations department at Movoto, a real estate portal based in San Francisco. He has been featured in over 500 publications as an expert in real estate and as an authority on real estate trends.

Nick's the creator of the HomeSnacks YouTube channel that now has over 260,000 subscribers and is an excellent source to learn about different parts of the country.