These Are The 10 Worst Places To Live In Arizona For 2019


We used science and data to determine which cities in the Copper State are the real pits.

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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 2019. This is our fifth time ranking the worst places to live in Arizona.

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If you’ve ever been to Arizona, you know it’s a beautiful place. The desert landscapes are some of the prettiest places in the country, and the mountain areas have some of the best outdoor activities in the entire southwest.

But is it all great in the Copper State? Of course not. Just like every other state, Arizona has its trouble spots. The purpose of this post is to use science and data to determine which cities in Arizona are the least desirable to live in.

Of course, you’ll most likely disagree if you see your town atop this list. But nonetheless, according to science, these cities are the worst places you could possibly live if you make Arizona your home. These places need a big hug right about now.

After analyzing 54 of the state’s most populous cities (over 5,000 people), we came up with this list as the 10 worst places to live in Arizona:

  1. Eloy (Photos)
  2. South Tucson (Photos)
  3. Guadalupe (Photos)
  4. Winslow (Photos)
  5. San Luis (Photos)
  6. Coolidge (Photos)
  7. Globe (Photos)
  8. Cottonwood (Photos)
  9. Tolleson (Photos)
  10. Tucson (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 Arizona? That would be Eloy.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and see how your city fared in 2019.

If you’re looking for something more national, check out the worst cities in America or the worst states in America.

For more Arizona reading, check out:

How we determined the worst places to live in Arizona 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

The data comes from the Census’s most recent American Community Survey and from the FBI Uniform Crime Report.

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 5,000 people were considered — leaving 54 cities.

We then ranked each city from 1 to 54 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 Arizona — Eloy. Read on for a detailed look at the 10 worst cities in Arizona.

This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased.

Eloy, AZ

Overall SnackAbility

1
/10

Population: 17,537
Rank Last Year: 2 (Up 1)
Median Home Value: $80,600 (2nd worst)
Unemployment Rate: 12.1% (5th worst)
More on Eloy:  Data | Photos

Eloy, along I-10 south of Chandler, is also a hot mess right now. There are some big economic problems here AND crime is really high. In fact, Eloy is the 30th most dangerous place you can live in Arizona.

Residents in Eloy have a 1 in 34.5 chance of being the victim of a property crime. That’s a lot of stolen laptops, cell phones and sunglasses.

When you’re considering home prices, you can’t do much lower than in Eloy, where average homes are valued at only$80,600. That’s the 2nd-lowest in the state. But residents earn far less than in other cities, so their mortgage payments might still seem overwhelming.

South Tucson, AZ

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 5,624
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $77,700 (1st worst)
Unemployment Rate: 16.4% (1st worst)
More on South Tucson:  Data | Photos

When you’re looking at science and data, the city of South Tucson is the 2nd worst place you can live in the state of Arizona. 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 South Tucson had a 1 in 19.0 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 South Tucson, statistically, 25 of them would have been the victim of a property crime, meaning a home robbery, car break in or a stolen wallet.

South Tucson’s other issues are a very high unemployment rate (16.4%) and income levels of its residents ($21,160).

Guadalupe, AZ

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 6,270
Rank Last Year: 5 (Up 2)
Median Home Value: $101,400 (8th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 15.3% (3rd worst)
More on Guadalupe:  Data | Photos

Guadalupe, AZ needs a big hug right now. The unemployment rate here is 15.3%, the median income is just above the poverty line, and the crime is the 3rd highest in the state. You have a 1 in 0.0 chance of being robbed here every year.

You could find a much better place to call home.

Winslow, AZ

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

1
/10

Population: 9,517
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Home Value: $87,800 (4th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 14.6% (4th worst)
More on Winslow:  Data | Photos

Winslow is a really small, densely populated place in Arizona.

The unemployment rate here is sky high at 14.6%, and income levels are the 9th lowest in Arizona. Homes sell for an average of $87,800.

If you’re trying to have some sort of professional career in Arizona, this is one of the last places you would want to live.

San Luis, AZ

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 31,509
Rank Last Year: 7 (Up 2)
Median Home Value: $112,200 (9th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 15.9% (2nd worst)
More on San Luis:  Data | Photos

There are some bad places to live and some really, really bad places to live. According to the data, San Luis is one of the worst places you can live in Arizona. And quite possibly, one of the worst places you can live in, period. Let’s see why.

We’re not economists, but when you have a 15.9% unemployment rate for a city of 31,509 people, that’s a sign that things aren’t just bad. They are downright depressing. That’s by far the highest unemployment rate of any city we’ve analyzed.

Not only that, but the public school system is completely underfunded in San Luis. The students get the least amount of spending in the entire state, and at $7,000 each per year, that’s about half the national average.

The city has a prison in town, and it sits right next to the Mexican border. Crime is above average here, and perhaps the only reason crime isn’t higher is that there are most likely lots of border patrol agents in the area.

Coolidge, AZ

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 12,221
Rank Last Year: 6 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $88,200 (6th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 9.3% (14th worst)
More on Coolidge:  Data | Photos

Coolidge is only a half hour drive south of the outskirts of Chandler and ranks as the 6th worst city on this list. However, there are some major differences in the quality of life between the two.

Coolidge has the 20th highest crime rate in Arizona, where residents have a 1 in 23.1 chance of being robbed every year. Homes are the 6th cheapest in the state ($88,200), and the uninsured rate here is far below average as well.

Globe, AZ

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 7,341
Rank Last Year: 18 (Up 11)
Median Home Value: $116,600 (10th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 9.3% (14th worst)
More on Globe:  Data | Photos

Things are starting to get progressively more ‘modern’ and in line with what you expect in a great state such as Arizona when we get to Globe. Sure, the unemployment rate is at 9.3% (which is really high), and the median income is $44,821. But the homes are at least above the $100,000 mark, and the schools aren’t a complete mess.

Globe is tucked away in the canyons of the Superstition Mountains, near two large reservations.

Cottonwood, AZ

Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 11,634
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $147,600 (23rd worst)
Unemployment Rate: 8.2% (21st worst)
More on Cottonwood:  Data | Photos

While numbers in Arizona are clearly better when you compare them to the rest of the nation, the fact is when you compare Arizona cities against one another, you see big differences.

Home values in Cottonwood average $147,600, which is the 23rd 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 Cottonwood.

Plus, 20.4% of the population here lives below the poverty line.

Plus, the crime rate is the 28th highest in the state here. Every year, when you’re within Cottonwood city limits, you have a 1 in 30.6 chance of being robbed. That’s a lot of broken into cars and homes.

Tolleson, AZ

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 7,052
Rank Last Year: 4 (Down 5)
Median Home Value: $161,500 (25th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 4.1% (46th worst)
More on Tolleson:  Data | Photos

When you’re looking at the worst places you could live in Arizona, Tolleson ranks 9th worst. Let’s see why.

Here in Tolleson, crime is the 6th highest in the state, and 1 out of 9.1 residents was robbed here according to the latest FBI numbers.

That’s not the first place you think of making home, is it?

Additionally, you have a 1 in 103 chance of being the victim of a violent crime, which includes rapes, attacks or murders. That’s really high.

When you look at adult education in Arizona, the folks in Tolleson have the 7th highest drop out rate. And other factors that make Tolleson undesirable are the low median incomes and home prices.

The unemployment rate is the 46th highest in Arizona, at 4.1%. That’s actually on par with the national average, which means Arizona has some hard workers.

Tucson, AZ

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 530,905
Rank Last Year: 10 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $137,600 (20th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 9.4% (12th worst)
More on Tucson:  Data | Photos

Tucson is the 10th worst city in Arizona for 2019. When you’re comparing other cities to Tucson, things just don’t look great, at least according to science.

Tucson is the 10th most dangerous place in Arizona, 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 9.4%, worse than the state average.

Home values are really low ($137,600), and residents earn just $39,617 a year.

Review Of Tucson by HomeSnacks User

idk ive lived here 7yrs. i exp everything you would in a typical life

……………………………………………………………….

food and the people………………………………

Wrapping Up The Worst In Arizona

If you’re looking at areas in Arizona 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, Eloy ranks as the worst city to live in Arizona for 2019.

If you’re curious enough, here are the best cities to live in Arizona:

  1. Gilbert (Pop. 232,176)
  2. Scottsdale (Pop. 239,283)
  3. Paradise Valley (Pop. 13,961)

For more Arizona reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Worst Places To Live In Arizona

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
1 Eloy 17,537 12.1% $80,600
2 South Tucson 5,624 16.4% $77,700
3 Guadalupe 6,270 15.3% $101,400
4 Winslow 9,517 14.6% $87,800
5 San Luis 31,509 15.9% $112,200
6 Coolidge 12,221 9.3% $88,200
7 Globe 7,341 9.3% $116,600
8 Cottonwood 11,634 8.2% $147,600
9 Tolleson 7,052 4.1% $161,500
10 Tucson 530,905 9.4% $137,600
11 Snowflake 5,668 9.3% $154,100
12 Camp Verde 11,091 8.5% $167,500
13 Show Low 10,860 6.5% $139,400
14 Holbrook 5,005 6.4% $83,700
15 Yuma 93,851 10.1% $126,400
16 Chino Valley 11,155 3.6% $179,700
17 Cave Creek 5,423 7.6% $466,600
18 Nogales 20,233 10.4% $117,500
19 Casa Grande 52,501 8.4% $131,800
20 Phoenix 1,574,421 6.9% $197,800
21 Somerton 15,508 11.5% $116,700
22 Glendale 241,543 6.3% $180,500
23 Douglas 16,576 11.8% $88,200
24 Bisbee 5,261 3.4% $127,000
25 Page 7,515 10.1% $147,300
26 Kingman 28,855 7.8% $127,900
27 Apache Junction 38,452 8.3% $90,600
28 Avondale 81,590 6.0% $174,800
29 El Mirage 34,400 7.0% $136,300
30 Sedona 10,246 7.3% $446,900
31 Payson 15,338 6.2% $213,600
32 Litchfield Park 5,686 5.6% $267,200
33 Florence 26,066 8.9% $127,900
34 Prescott Valley 41,995 8.3% $192,400
35 Wickenburg 6,906 1.3% $218,800
36 Flagstaff 69,903 7.7% $296,700
37 Fountain Hills 24,047 5.8% $387,800
38 Queen Creek 33,298 3.5% $312,000
39 Goodyear 74,953 3.9% $256,900
40 Mesa 479,317 6.0% $187,900
41 Sierra Vista 43,585 7.2% $180,400
42 Safford 9,662 10.2% $136,600
43 Tempe 178,339 5.5% $237,200
44 Peoria 161,383 6.1% $230,400
45 Prescott 41,468 7.7% $301,600
46 Marana 41,720 5.5% $234,400
47 Maricopa 46,248 5.3% $170,300
48 Surprise 129,534 6.7% $213,600
49 Chandler 245,160 4.6% $268,000
50 Sahuarita 28,257 3.5% $187,100
51 Oro Valley 42,889 5.8% $288,400
52 Gilbert 232,176 4.7% $286,400
53 Scottsdale 239,283 4.1% $433,500
54 Paradise Valley 13,961 2.6% $1,406,700

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20 thoughts on “These Are The 10 Worst Places To Live In Arizona For 2019

  1. Honestly you should have put Wickenburg on the list. Forget what your study was based on. This town is actually called WICKEDburg. Extremely corrupt police, extremely high drug use, nothing really there for kids. Just a terrible place to live.

    1. Wicken is great for old-fart racist jackholes to sit around and bitch and moan about the “n*ggers and queers women and ‘Mescans ruining the country!” When the depression generation and racist/fascist snowbirds die out, Arizona will be a lot nicer place to live.

      1. thats funny when you say that racist and fascists should die off, but you have Hiroshima the place that got nuked by the us in 1945 in your name.

  2. I’m totally surprised that Safford didn’t make this list! Being a life long resident of this city I honestly can say it’s one of the worst!!

    1. Yeah, because who needs that pinko education about science and stuff anyway, right? Just send kids to tax dodging welfare mooch “churches” (aka, houses of the deluded)for some ‘Merican brainwashing.

  3. You listed my small AZ town in the worst. I love it here! I am not going to say where but wanted to thank you. Hopefully your negative review will keep others from moving here. Thank you!

  4. Arizona is one of the better states to live in.The weather is the dominate factor.Of course the diversity of the land is an attraction as mountains and desert are combined.

    The minus is you pay for the climate by lower wages.This is true of Florida also.

    Phoenix was a beautiful town when last I was saw it.Economics has effected most cities.Bus transportation was not abundant when I live in Phoenix so you need private transportation.

    It is only about 8 hrs to San Diego from Phoenix?You can go for a swim in the Pacific.

    Arizona and Florida are best choices.Both are similar in many ways.Florida has no mountains are desert.

    For personal reasons I prefer Arizona.If you don’t like one part of the state you can move to another.

    In the winter live in Phoenix.In the summer live in the mountains if you can.

    Prescott has the rodeo and is allot cooler than Phoenix in the summer.

    A motorbike is a good means of transportation.Of course there are a few cold months.You have to be careful when you ride a motorbike.

    Walter Haas—God Bless America

  5. El Mirage AZ is the # 1 speed trap white trash town in all the USA! Their ONLY source of income are traffic cameras operated by overweight ex cops from other loser towns. if you are 2 MPH over their speed traps they send you a $ 234 ticket within 2 days. They are really hard up! Best thing that could ever happen is if their cops all died of overdoses of burritos!

  6. Coolidge and eloy what a dump full of tweekers i know i used to work there!You can not go any where with out a begger asking for money.You go to Safeway you come out you’ll have something missing.Stanfield a dump tweeker town too.Sections of Maricopa getting bad.The south side of Casa Grande a dump. Sections of the west and east side of Casa Grande plenty of tweekers and gangs.Great place to live North West of Casa Grande.Beautiful homes good schools i know i own a home there.All the newer section of NW Casa Grande beautiful place to live .Chandler and Gilbert beautiful place to live i know i own homes there too.But Old Chandler close to Mesa very bad, tweeker town and gangs.

  7. You left out the toxic waste dump of the almost-a-ghost-town of Miami. Once the copper is tapped out here, it will take a hundred years to clean up the toxic crap left by the mines, but no one will want to, so it will just dry up and blow away, become even more haunted than it already is. Checklist: 1) Downwind site, just breathe in that radioactivity like my best friend did and get aplastic thyroid cancer and die, 2) Gateway to the Pinal mountains, site of US Govt spraying of Agnet Orange (yay!) 3) Mines poison everything in the area, hooray! 4) Suspicious number of “outlaw bikers” riding $30,000 bikes around town (Meth houses burning down abound) 5) Ignorant f*cks who support racists and traitors (Don’t worry, they hate everyone who’s not from there, including gays, blacks, women, etc.), Miami, the Original Sh*thole!

  8. thats funny when you say that racist and fascists should die off, but you have Hiroshima the place that got nuked by the us in 1945 in your name.

  9. After doing some research I am considering cancelling y eight night visit to Tucson in April. have always wanted to go there as I only saw it for a day in about 1980. Now I live on the border of Tampa and FL has been compared to AZ in terms of weather and low salaries. Maybe I should return to LA to visit but I am hesitant because it will cost me much more.

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