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Dallas's neighborhoods conjure up too many stereotypes to count. You've got hipster areas, preppy places, neighborhoods where college kids thrive, and of course, ghettos.
It seems as if there's a neighborhood for everyone in Dallas.
And while the city consistently ranks as one of the best places to live in the country thanks in part to a strong economy and tons of entertainment, it's not all rainbows and sunshine in Dallas. Some neighborhoods aren't as great as others.
So the question arises, which Dallas neighborhoods are the worst, and which are the best?
Today, we'll use science and data to determine which Dallas hoods need a little tender loving care - the sore thumbs of the Dallas area if you will. Realistically, you can't expect all the neighborhoods to be amazing, although University Park ranks way above the rest.
We examined 32 of Dallas's neighborhoods to find out the worst places to live. These places don't quite measure up to Dallas's reputation.
So what's the worst neighborhood to live in Dallas for 2022? According to the most recent census data, Northwest Dallas looks to be the worst neighborhood in Dallas.
Read on to see how we determined the places around Dallas that need a pick-me-up. And remember, don't blame the messenger.
Once you're done, you can look at the bottom of the story for a complete chart of every neighborhood we looked at from worst to best. Looking for places to avoid outside of the city? You can also check out the worst suburbs of Dallas.
For more Texas reading, check out:
The 10 Worst Neighborhoods In Dallas For 2022
There's plenty to do in Northwest Dallas. You'll find lots of hotels, shops, and restaurants. The area also houses the Asian Trade District. And, if you feel like getting out of town, you can head over to the Love Field airport, just to the south of the neighborhood.
Of course, a plane ticket might be hard to afford for most locals. The median income comes in at a miniscule $18,936. Those low wages put homeownership out of reach for many, even with a median home value of just $79,700. Still, a paycheck is a paycheck. Fully 7.7% of the area can't find a job at all.
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $79,700 (9th worst)
Median Income: $18,936 (worst)
More on Northwest Dallas: Data
South Dallas mostly represents an urban area. In the northern end of the district, close to downtown, you'll find a web of Interstate interchanges and a view of the high rises at the center of the city. But the area has its share of green spaces too, especially along the fringes. You can head to William Blair Jr. Park and Fair Park to escape the glass and asphalt.
You might not be able to escape the economic worry however. An elevated unemployment rate and a reliance on low-paying jobs leaves this area at number 2 on the list of Dallas's worst neighborhoods in 2022. That comes as the unemployment rate hits 6.2% and the median income stands at $34,588.
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $60,262 (2nd worst)
Median Income: $34,588 (7th worst)
More on South Dallas: Data
A small neighborhood in southeast Dallas, South Boulevard-Park Row has an exclusive air. Sold as a historic district, it contains houses dating back to 1910. Many local homes represent important architectural landmarks as well, with examples of the Prairie School and Craftsman bungalows.
Problem is: most of the money to build those structures was earned more than a century ago. These days, it's harder to find the cash for upscale places to live. Now, the median income sits at $30,213 and the unemployment rate hovers at 4.4%.
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $64,083 (3rd worst)
Median Income: $30,213 (4th worst)
More on South Boulevard-Park Row: Data
When you live in a sprawling metropolis like Dallas, it's nice to find ways to stay in touch with nature. In that regard, the appropriately named Cedar Crest provides some relief. Sure, for the most part, it's just another urban neighborhood. But you can also commune with wild beasts or enjoy a pleasant walk on the grass.
Take what you can get. Because the realities of city life hit pretty hard in other parts of Cedar Crest. This is especially true on the economic front. Locals face an unemployment rate of 6.8% and a median income of just $26,592.
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $55,183 (worst)
Median Income: $26,592 (2nd worst)
More on Cedar Crest: Data
The "ford" part of Eagle Ford refers to fording the Trinity River, which forms the northern boundary of this neighborhood. In the old days, the community served as an important river crossing. It remained a thinly populated town into the 20th century. However, in the 1950s, a fast-growing city of Dallas absorbed Eagle Ford.
Maybe it would have been better off on its own. Instead, it now ranks as the number 5 worst area of Dallas in 2022.
The economy represents the main challenge to the area. Good-paying jobs are difficult to find. The unemployment rate stands at 7.4% and the median income hovers at $36,658.
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $108,610 (14th worst)
Median Income: $36,658 (8th worst)
More on Eagle Ford: Data
Want to get a taste of life in Wolf Creek? Well, then, in true American style, let's go shopping! Specifically, let's head over to the area's Wheatland Towne Crossing mall and see what's available. You've got your Dollar Tree, your Five Below, your Aldi, and your Ross Dress for Less. There used to be a $1 Jewelry Galore, but that closed.
The lesson: you'll need some frugal shopping to get by in this neighborhood, located in southwest Dallas. The economy isn't a train wreck here. The unemployment rate hovers at 5.7%. But, with a median income of $37,023, every little bit helps.
Rank Last Year: 6 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $69,264 (5th worst)
Median Income: $37,023 (9th worst)
More on Wolf Creek: Data
Southeast Dallas has a bad reputation. We know...not a surprise for a neighborhood listed as the number 7 worst spot in Dallas for 2022. Still, it's considered a high crime area with suspect public schools.
Meanwhile, locals confront serious financial pressures. The unemployment rate isn't terrible at 4.5%, but the median income amounts to only $34,440. Even in an area where the median home price sits at just $73,131, it's difficult to make ends meet.
But the area has nicer spots as well. Some sections of Southeast Dallas have reached "up and coming" status, and you have draws like Crawford Memorial Park.
Rank Last Year: 7 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $73,131 (7th worst)
Median Income: $34,440 (6th worst)
More on Southeast Dallas: Data
For such a small neighborhood, Urbandale-Parkdale comes with, well...a lot of parks. Guess the "Parkdale" part pretty much nails it. You've got the actual Parkdale Park on the north side of the area and Lawnview Park to the south. You've even got Parkdale Lake and the White Rock Creek. Country living, right here in the city.
Well, not quite. There is that "Urbandale" part to deal with. Locals face many of the issues associated with an urban landscape, including poverty and financial struggles. Those come about as a result of a $33,974 median income. On the bright side, the unemployment rate won't make you choke at 4.6% and home prices are affordable at a median level of $78,462.
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $78,462 (8th worst)
Median Income: $33,974 (5th worst)
More on Urbandale-Parkdale: Data
Love Field sounds like either a hippie commune or a particularly naughty part of town. In this case, neither applies. This Love Field is actually Dallas's airport.
Well, one of Dallas's airports. True to a neighborhood that ranks as the number 9 worst spot in Dallas for 2022, it isn't even the city's main source of air transportation. For that, you'll have to head northwest of downtown for the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. But Love Field still pulls its weight. It represents the operating base of Southwest Airlines.
Living near an airport isn't always a pleasant experience. It's not a shock, then, that the Love Field Area generally attracts people looking for a discount on real estate.
Rank Last Year: 9 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $68,588 (4th worst)
Median Income: $41,582 (11th worst)
More on Love Field Area: Data
Five Mile Creek is a small, triangle-shaped neighborhood in the southwest part of town. Its borders are defined by the I-35, Highway 67, and W. Ledbetter Dr. You'll find the actual Five Mile Creek running through the southern part of the neighborhood, right by the Big T Plaza shopping mall.
As has become common on this list, Five Mile Creek slots in as the number 10 worst location in Dallas because of its stagnant economy. If you get a job at the Big T, you're likely not going to earn very much. The median income tracks at $26,902, while the unemployment rate equals 6.1%.
Rank Last Year: 10 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $83,883 (11th worst)
Median Income: $26,902 (3rd worst)
More on Five Mile Creek: Data
Methodology: How we determined the worst Dallas neighborhoods in 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 places have the least amount of those things. We threw the following criteria into this analysis in order to get the best, most complete results possible. We used this set of criteria for each neighborhood in Dallas:
- High unemployment (Less jobs)
- Low median income (Less pay)
- Low population density (No things to do)
- Low home values (No one's willing to pay to live here)
- High crime (Estimated)
Then, we ranked each neighborhood in Dallas, Texas for each of these criteria from worst to best.
Next, we averaged the individual rankings for each criteria into a "Worst Score".
The neighborhood with the lowest "Worst Score" ranks as the worst neighborhood of Dallas.
Read on below to learn more about these terrible places around Dallas to live. Or skip to the end to see the list of all 32 neighborhoods ranked from worst to best.
This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased. Hold on to your pants.
Summary: The Worst Neighborhoods Around Dallas
Well there you have it -- the worst of the neighborhoods in Dallas with Northwest Dallas landing at the bottom of the pack.
As we mentioned earlier, the neighborhoods in Dallas aren't all bad. University Park takes the cake as the best place to live in Dallas.
We ranked the neighborhoods from worst to best in the chart below.
For more Texas reading, check out:
Where Are The Worst Neighborhoods To Live In Dallas For 2022?
|3||South Boulevard-Park Row||26,359|
|9||Love Field Area||10,475|
|10||Five Mile Creek||6,598|
|17||Convention Center District||920|
|20||West End Historic District||874|
|21||City Center District||1,636|
|22||Farmers Market District||1,688|
|26||Main Street District||987|