If you’re reading this, you’re most likely from Vermont. Or a nosy New Hampshire neighbor. You’re probably thinking, “Worst place to live in Vermont? Is there such as thing?”
While Vermont might be one of the most charming and beautiful states, and ranking the worst places to live might there sound like pure nonsense, the fact remains that there are simply `better’ and `worse’ places to live anywhere in the country. Including Vermont.
Is it all a bed of roses in the Green Mountain State? Of course not. Just like every other state, Vermont has its least desirable spots. The purpose of this post is to use science and data to determine which cities are the worst you could possibly live in if you make Vermont your home .
After analyzing 26 of the state’s most populous cities (over 2,100 people), we came up with this list as the 10 worst places to live in Vermont:
What? Where are these places you wonder? And before you get all riled up and say we’re picking on small town America, that’s not the case.
We understand there’s a lot of good in every place.
However, according to data (which doesn’t measure things like beauty and ‘friendly people’), there are far better options in the state for making a place home. And the worst place to live in Vermont? That would be Morrisville.
Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and see how your city fared in 2019.
For more Vermont reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Vermont
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Vermont
- 10 Most Dangerous Cities In Vermont
The 10 Worst Places To Live In Vermont For 2019
The unemployment rate in Morrisville is a sky high 5.4%, which is the 16th highest in the state. Ouch.
The median income in Morrisville is $37,946. That means 15.7% of the population is living below the poverty line. Crime isn’t horrible here, but you have a 1 in 4.5 chance of being the victim of a property crime when you’re within city limits every year.
Fair Haven’s situation is very similar to others on the list; bottom of the barrel scores in unemployment, income, and crime, with decent education statistics keeping it from the very top of this list.
Fair Haven has the 13th worst crime index of any place in Vermont, and has the 12th lowest income.
When you’re looking at science and data, the city of Milton is the 3rd worst place you can live in the state of Vermont. Let’s see why.
You may be surprised to hear that the crime here is the 10th-highest in the state per capita, according to the FBI data base.
Residents in Milton had a 1 in 22.7 chance of being robbed in 2018. To put things into perspective, since the average person has 300 friends on Facebook, if everyone you friended lived in Milton, statistically, 25 of them would have been the victim of a property crime, meaning a home robbery, car break in or a stolen wallet.
Milton’s other issues are a very high unemployment rate (9.2%) and income levels of its residents ($52,031).
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 6)
Median Home Value: $151,800 (8th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 7.6% (4th worst)
More on West Rutland: Data
West Rutland is a really small, densely populated place in Vermont.
The unemployment rate here is sky high at 7.6%, and income levels are the 21st lowest in Vermont. Homes sell for an average of $151,800.
If you’re trying to have some sort of professional career in Vermont, this is one of the last places you would want to live.
Newport actually has the highest unemployment rate in Vermont at 5.8%, which is a little lower than the national average.
The residents here are most likely pretty broke, as the average household income is $32,000. That’s only $7,000 more than the poverty level for a family of four. Homes are the 6th cheapest in the state ($137,000), and Newport has the 9th highest crime rate in Vermont, where residents have a 1 in 142 chance of being robbed.
While that’s high in Vermont, that’s actually really, really low in comparison to the rest of the country. Usually, cities with the 9th highest crime rates have a 1 in 20 chance of being robbed.
Now we can get to some actual cities that might have some normal numbers. In this case, West Brattleboro ranks high mainly due to the low economic numbers. Homes are the 15th cheapest in the state here at $182,900. Say what you want about low cost of living. What the data says is that cheaper homes means less demand. And there isn’t a lot of demand to live in West Brattleboro.
The median income levels here are the 4th lowest in the state of Vermont, at $36,724. Crime is above average, but not horrible like some of the cities we’ll talk about in a minute. And almost 7.1% of people in West Brattleboro were without jobs according to the latest numbers.
Many of the people who work in Montpelier live in Barre. Crime is the 5th highest in Vermont here, where residents have a 1 in 48 chance of being the victim of a property crime, which is actually pretty consistent with a ‘bad’ town in another state.
That means you have to lock your doors at night here.
However, there were only two violent crimes here in 2019, according to the FBI. That’s amazingly low.
Barre also has the 8th lowest home values and a below average publicly funded education system.
St. Johnsbury is off of I-91 in the northern part of the state. Here, the homes are the second cheapest in Vermont ($158,700). Say what you want about cheap living, lower prices mean lower demand, and there’s not of demand to live here.
The unemployment rate is 4.7% here, which is the 5th highest in Vermont. The student spending is far lower than average, but the crime is about average.
Springfield doesn’t have it much better, in terms of overall economic outlook. The unemployment rate is at 4.2%, and people average less than $35,463 a year in combined household incomes. Homes stand at $131,300, which is very low, and crime in the worst 10% in Vermont.
And again, in terms of the overall ‘enjoyment’ factor, it’s not easy to find fun on a Friday night.
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 3)
Median Home Value: $196,800 (17th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 7.1% (7th worst)
More on White River Junction: Data
you’re looking to live in Vermont, White River Junction might not be the best choice as it places 10th in our ranking of the worst places to live for 2019.
White River Junction doesn’t have the worst crime in the state, but it’s sure up there. And when you factor in one of the lowest household incomes in the state and a sky high unemployment rate, White River Junction may not be your first choice for a vacation.
How we determined the worst places to live in Vermont for 2019
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 don’t think it’s a stretch to assume that people like the following things:
- Good education
- Lots of jobs
- Low crime
- Low poverty
- Nice homes
- High incomes
- High population density (Lots of things to do)
- Short work commutes
- Health insurance
We broke crime down into violent crime and property crime to give violent crime a larger weight — if you did a simple calculation of all crimes per capita, property crimes are normally 7x more common and really bias that ranking.
Furthermore, only cities with at least 2,000 people were considered — leaving 26 cities.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 26 for all the criteria with a #1 ranking being the worst for the particular criteria.
Next, we averaged the rankings into one “Worst Place To Live Score”.
Finally, we ranked every city on the “Worst Place To Live Score” with the lowest score being the worst city in Vermont — Morrisville. Read on for a detailed look at the 10 worst cities in Vermont.
This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased.
Wrapping Up The Worst In Vermont
If you’re looking at areas in Vermont with the worst economic situations, where there’s higher than average crime, and not a lot to do, this is an accurate list.
And in the end, Morrisville ranks as the worst city to live in Vermont for 2019.
If you’re curious enough, here are the best cities to live in Vermont:
- Essex Junction (Pop. 10,132)
- Montpelier (Pop. 7,584)
- South Burlington (Pop. 18,773)
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