So, we get it about Wyoming, You are a bunch of outdoor-loving, tough-minded, hard-working folks. So when we say a place in Wyoming is `one of the worst’, and we cite data and statistics that indicate places with cheap homes and `no indoor entertainment,’ are a bad thing, we’re using what people have said they desire as a basis for a ranking.
Is it all rosy in the Cowboy State? Of course not. Just like every other state, Wyoming 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 Wyoming your home.
After analyzing 30 of the state’s most populous cities (over 2,000 people), we came up with this list as the 10 worst places to live in the state of Wyoming:
- Evansville (Photos)
- Evanston (Photos)
- Lovell (Photos)
- Worland (Photos)
- Riverton (Photos)
- Glenrock (Photos)
- Powell (Photos)
- Newcastle (Photos)
- Afton (Photos)
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 Wyoming? That would be Evansville.
Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and see how your city fared in 2019.
For more Wyoming reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Wyoming
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Wyoming
- 10 Most Dangerous Cities In Wyoming
How we determined the worst places to live in Wyoming 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 30 cities.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 30 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 Wyoming — Evansville. Read on for a detailed look at the 10 worst cities in Wyoming.
This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased.
What the heck is going on in little Evansville? The crime is the 4th highest in the state of Wyoming. Here, residents have a 1 in 43.7 chance of being robbed. That means if you live here, and didn’t have something stolen from you, there’s a good chance your neighbor did.
That ratio is one of the highest we’ve seen in the nation. Perhaps the high unemployment rate has something to do with it. More than 5.4% of Evansville residents were without jobs in the latest numbers we collected, which is the 13th highest in the state.
Add it all up, and this is truly the worst place you could live in Wyoming.
Rank Last Year: 3 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $108,400 (1st worst)
Unemployment Rate: 7.7% (6th worst)
More on Mills: Data
While numbers in Wyoming are clearly better when you compare them to the rest of the nation, the fact is when you compare Wyoming cities against one another, you see big differences. Take the schools, for instance.
Just outside of Casper, Mills schools are just about as low as you can get when it comes to student funding and teacher-student ratios. Home values here average $108,400, which is the 1st lowest in the state. Say what you want about ‘cheap living,’ the fact is homes are priced by demand, and there’s not a lot of demand to live in Mills.
Plus, 12.7% of the population here lives below the poverty line.
Plus, the crime rate is the 10th highest in the state here. Every year, when you’re within Mills city limits, you have a 1 in 45.4 chance of being robbed. That’s a lot of broken into cars and homes.
If you live in Wyoming, you may or may not be surprised that Evanston ranked, at least on paper, as the 3rd worst place to live in the state. It has the 8th highest unemployment rate in the state, and the 12th most dangerous.
Incidentally, Evanston is the 13th most densely populated city in Wyoming. Draw your own conclusions.
Lovell is the 4th worst city in Wyoming for 2019. When you’re comparing other cities to Lovell, things just don’t look great, at least according to science.
Lovell is the 27th most dangerous place in Wyoming, according to FBI statistics. And the residents here have a hard time keeping a job — at least in comparison to the rest of the state. The unemployment rate is 10.6%, worse than the state average.
Home values are really low ($143,500), and residents earn just $43,906 a year.
If you’re looking to live in Wyoming, Worland might not be the best choice as it places 5th in our ranking of the worst places to live for 2019.
The unemployment rate here is 8.4%, and households bring in a combined $49,191 a year in income. That’s not too far from the poverty line, even though money goes a lot further in the boonies of Wyoming.
Crime is the 23rd highest in the state in Worland as well. Just not a very desirable place at all to make home.
Riverton ranks as the 6th worst place to live in Wyoming for 2019.
While some people have come to the defense of Riverton as being ‘not as bad’ as it is portrayed in the media, the fact remains that this city deserves to be high on this list when you look at the data.
Crime is the 1st highest in Wyoming here. Residents have a 1 in 20.7 chance of being robbed every year within city limits. For Wyoming, that’s really high. And if you read forums and chatter about Riverton, people have said the entire Wind River Indian Reservation area, which Riverton lies inside of, has a notorious drug and crime history.
The unemployment rate is 4.8%, which is the 17th highest in the state, and families earn just under $51,102 a year, which is the 12th highest in Wyoming. 13.3% of the people here live below the poverty line.
Glenrock is just a tiny place in the middle of nowhere where people have a hard time making ends meet. Folks here earn barely more than $55,188 a year, which is barely over the poverty line. And for Wyoming, a 11.7% unemployment rate is really high.
Crime is also the 28th highest in Wyoming here. Meaning people need to stop breaking into homes and start looking for jobs.
When you’re within Powell city limits, you have a 1 in 40 chance of being the victim of a property crime. And, Powell residents earn some of the lowest salaries in Wyoming ($43,703 combined family income). 20% of the population lives below the poverty line.
Powell is out in the middle of nowhere in the northern part of the state.
Would you believe that Newcastle is the 17th most dangerous place in Wyoming? That’s the case, as every year, you have a 1 in 62.1 chance of being the victim of a property crime when you’re within Newcastle city limits.
In addition, every year, you have a 1 in 316 chance of being a victim of a violent crime in Newcastle. That means raped, attacked or killed. Again, for Wyoming, that’s just unacceptable.
Beyond the crime numbers, Newcastle’s unemployment rate is the 20th highest in Wyoming (4.1%), and homes are the 5th cheapest in the state ($141,000). Say what you want about ‘cheap living’, the fact is homes are priced on demand, and there’s not a lot of demand to live in Newcastle.
You might have passed through Afton once and probably throught it seems to be a relatively quiet, clean place.
Here’s what science says about why Afton needs some love: The unemployment rate is nearly 9.8%, residents earn about $52,730 a year, and home prices are just over $202,600. Across the board, those are in the bottom half in the state. Not absolutely horrible, but not desirable, either.
And there simply isn’t anything to do in Afton.
Wrapping Up The Worst In Wyoming
If you’re looking at areas in Wyoming 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, Evansville ranks as the worst city to live in Wyoming for 2019.
If you’re curious enough, here are the best cities to live in Wyoming:
- Laramie (Pop. 32,104)
- Cody (Pop. 9,826)
- Kemmerer (Pop. 2,730)
For more Wyoming reading, check out:
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In Wyoming
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In Wyoming
- 10 Safest Places In Wyoming
- 10 Best Cities For Singles In Wyoming
Detailed List Of The Worst Places To Live In Wyoming