These Are The 10 Worst Dallas Suburbs For 2018


We used science and data to determine which Dallas 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 Dallas.

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 Dallas ‘burbs need a little tender loving care – the sore thumbs of the Dallas area if you will. Realistically, you can’t expect all the suburbs to live up to Dallas proper, although University Park certainly tries.

Of course, not all suburbs of Dallas are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado…

We examined the 76 biggest suburbs of Dallas to find out the worst places to live. And while you won’t necessarily find them on the worst places to live in Texas lists, these ten places are a little too far downwind of Dallas in terms of quality of life.

Here are the 10 worst suburbs around Dallas for 2018:

  1. Wilmer
  2. Hutchins (Photos)
  3. Terrell (Photos)
  4. Ferris
  5. Balch Springs (Photos)
  6. Combine
  7. Cockrell Hill
  8. Lancaster (Photos)
  9. Seagoville (Photos)
  10. Palmer

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

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

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

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Determining The Worst Suburbs Around Dallas for 2018

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, 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 Dallas.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 2,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 76 suburbs to evaluate around Dallas.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 76 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 Dallas.’ We’re lookin’ at you, Wilmer.

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.

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1. Wilmer

Wilmer, Texas

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 3,903
Unemployment Rate: 6.4%
Median Home Price: $55,300
Median Income: $37,546
We’ll get the ball rolling with Wilmer, the absolute worst place to live around Dallas according to the data.

And in the world of worst rankings, Wilmer beat the competition pretty handily thanks to scoring in the bottom 15% in three major categories. Income is the 2nd worst in the Dallas area, and to make matters worse, the city ranks 1st 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 Wilmer.

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.

2. Hutchins

Hutchins, Texas

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 5,644
Unemployment Rate: 6.4%
Median Home Price: $72,900
Median Income: $36,845
Welcome to Hutchins. Home to KMart, Big Lots, and a lot of gas stations.

This city is 10.9 miles to Dallas. Income levels here are the 1st lowest in the metro area, where families bring in about $36,845 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.

3. Terrell

Terrell, Texas

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 16,626
Unemployment Rate: 14.0%
Median Home Price: $92,400
Median Income: $40,815
Back up the highway we go for the third worst Dallas suburb you can live in. You might have expected to see Terrell 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 Dallas suburbs.

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

4. Ferris

Ferris, Texas

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 2,527
Unemployment Rate: 6.5%
Median Home Price: $80,500
Median Income: $50,150
If you live in Ferris, most likely you struggle to make ends meet every month. It ranks as the 9th lowest Dallas suburb when it comes to residents making money.

Not only that, but this is the 18th worst unemployed suburb you can live in if you choose to live near Dallas. Remember, we looked at 76 cities for this study.

Ferris is about 18.5 miles to downtown.

5. Balch Springs

Balch Springs, Texas

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 25,043
Unemployment Rate: 6.3%
Median Home Price: $83,000
Median Income: $41,983
Balch Springs has the distinction of being a Dallas suburb. Which means that’s about all it has going for it.

All snarkiness aside, Balch Springs has the 4th lowest home values in the metro Dallas area, where the median price is $83,000. To put that into perspective, in University Park, the median income is $198,438, which is the best in the area.

Balch Springs has an unemployment rate of 6.3% which ranks 24th worst.

6. Combine


Population: 2,008
Unemployment Rate: 9.1%
Median Home Price: $164,000
Median Income: $70,114
Combine has 2,008 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 18.2%.

7. Cockrell Hill

Cockrell Hill, Texas

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 4,301
Unemployment Rate: 7.1%
Median Home Price: $84,200
Median Income: $41,473
Ah, Cockrell Hill. You rank as the 7th worst place to live around Dallas.

It’s the place with the 9th most out of work residents in the Dallas metro area (7.1%).

8. Lancaster

Lancaster, Texas

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 38,426
Unemployment Rate: 8.1%
Median Home Price: $104,500
Median Income: $51,382
Lancaster is a city about 13.9 miles from Dallas, but Dallas 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. Lancaster has the 25th most uninsured people, 12th worst incomes, and has the 5th highest unemployment rate (8.1%) in the entire Dallas metro area.

Homes only cost $104,500 for a reason. That’s cheap for Dallas standards.

9. Seagoville

Seagoville, Texas

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 15,701
Unemployment Rate: 4.3%
Median Home Price: $83,700
Median Income: $46,064
If you absolutely have to live near Dallas, then Seagoville might be a place for you to consider as it’s only the 9th worst Dallas suburb.

About 4.3% of residents are out of work.

10. Palmer


Population: 2,268
Unemployment Rate: 5.3%
Median Home Price: $83,000
Median Income: $49,125
Rounding out the ten worst Dallas suburbs to call home is Palmer.

Located 26.3 miles outside the city, Palmers is a real pit when you look at the data. Its residents have the 36th highest unemployment rate (5.3%), and poverty is far above the area average.

The areas around Dallas where the dream is more of a nightmare for 2018

Well there you have it — the worst of the ‘burbs surrounding Dallas with Wilmer casting itself ahead of the pack.

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

For more Texas reading , check out:

Detailed List Of The Worst Dallas Suburbs

City Rank Population Unemployment Rate Median Home Price Median Income
Wilmer 1 3,903 6.4% $55,300 $37,546
Hutchins 2 5,644 6.4% $72,900 $36,845
Terrell 3 16,626 14.0% $92,400 $40,815
Ferris 4 2,527 6.5% $80,500 $50,150
Balch Springs 5 25,043 6.3% $83,000 $41,983
Combine 6 2,008 9.1% $164,000 $70,114
Cockrell Hill 7 4,301 7.1% $84,200 $41,473
Lancaster 8 38,426 8.1% $104,500 $51,382
Seagoville 9 15,701 4.3% $83,700 $46,064
Palmer 10 2,268 5.3% $83,000 $49,125
Mesquite 11 143,771 6.7% $112,400 $50,804
Glenn Heights 12 11,958 7.8% $137,200 $58,590
Garland 13 234,810 7.8% $121,400 $53,220
Waxahachie 14 32,536 6.0% $135,600 $55,385
Grand Prairie 15 185,631 6.7% $132,600 $60,246
Duncanville 16 39,599 7.9% $118,000 $51,545
Irving 17 232,013 5.9% $147,500 $54,868
Arlington 18 383,899 6.4% $137,900 $53,574
Hurst 19 38,690 6.9% $150,600 $55,807
Farmers Branch 20 32,211 5.6% $152,000 $61,255
Lakewood 21 59,489 10.8% $218,600 $45,261
Red Oak 22 11,663 5.3% $154,000 $70,250
Richland Hills 23 8,033 3.0% $111,000 $50,481
Kennedale 24 7,413 5.3% $170,900 $71,875
Cedar Hill 25 47,457 6.6% $139,100 $68,150
Desoto 26 51,854 6.9% $147,800 $60,350
Euless 27 53,675 6.0% $159,400 $58,606
Lake Dallas 28 7,575 6.7% $150,800 $68,785
Lewisville 29 102,327 4.9% $161,700 $57,549
Watauga 30 24,322 6.5% $109,500 $65,329
Hackberry 31 2,022 4.0% $171,100 $86,912
Crandall 32 3,126 5.3% $119,000 $69,464
Pantego 33 2,497 6.2% $180,700 $60,972
Carrollton 34 129,266 4.5% $183,100 $70,072
Forney 35 16,842 4.8% $160,400 $73,524
Midlothian 36 21,530 3.5% $162,900 $72,956
The Colony 37 40,757 6.3% $159,400 $73,830
Rowlett 38 59,203 6.7% $168,500 $85,565
North Richland Hills 39 67,994 4.8% $160,200 $63,537
Richardson 40 108,350 5.6% $209,500 $74,877
Little Elm 41 35,553 4.9% $177,100 $87,933
Grapevine 42 50,538 3.3% $258,400 $81,571
Lucas 43 6,585 10.3% $480,400 $133,419
Wylie 44 45,655 5.1% $163,500 $82,139
Rockwall 45 41,672 4.7% $205,700 $89,173
Sunnyvale 46 5,871 7.1% $311,400 $126,250
Bedford 47 48,864 5.2% $169,700 $62,701
Hickory Creek 48 3,939 4.9% $210,700 $94,000
Addison 49 15,363 4.3% $307,300 $70,559
Shady Shores 50 2,805 6.4% $285,000 $101,477
Mckinney 51 156,821 3.5% $228,500 $83,257
Oak Point 52 3,271 2.7% $179,400 $89,543
Parker 53 4,241 4.8% $485,300 $133,494
Plano 54 279,088 4.8% $248,800 $85,085
Mansfield 55 63,141 4.0% $204,800 $90,216
Sachse 56 23,329 3.6% $184,200 $93,270
Fairview 57 8,235 6.2% $331,900 $73,339
Lavon 58 2,663 1.9% $182,700 $75,185
Ovilla 59 3,639 0.9% $199,500 $90,168
Dalworthington Gardens 60 2,233 5.2% $355,600 $129,750
Allen 61 94,710 4.3% $234,600 $102,215
Mclendon-Chisholm 62 2,005 2.2% $345,800 $111,607
Fate 63 9,234 3.5% $195,500 $99,667
Murphy 64 20,015 5.2% $304,100 $118,843
Frisco 65 145,646 3.9% $300,900 $117,642
Heath 66 7,992 5.8% $407,000 $150,319
Flower Mound 67 69,966 4.0% $292,600 $123,492
Keller 68 44,250 3.5% $311,700 $122,292
Double Oak 69 3,028 3.9% $400,200 $138,482
Coppell 70 40,631 3.0% $317,900 $114,839
Highland 71 17,544 5.0% $461,500 $122,666
Highland Park 72 8,986 5.4% $1,253,600 $189,485
Southlake 73 29,101 3.3% $586,400 $189,432
Colleyville 74 24,982 3.2% $432,600 $162,183
Trophy Club 75 10,987 2.0% $328,800 $133,457
University Park 76 24,346 3.6% $1,102,500 $198,438

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