The 10 Worst Small Towns In Arizona For 2022


Using science and data, we can tell you which teeny specks in Arizona are the 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 2022. This is our ninth time ranking the worst small places to live in Arizona.

Most Americans have never been to Arizona. However, as the people who live there know, Arizona is an awesome state.

But is it all roses? Definitely not. Just like any other state, Arizona has its trouble spots. This article aims to determine, using science, the absolute worst small towns to live in the Grand Canyon State. Don't shoot the messenger, this is all using data.

After analyzing more than 114 of Arizona's smallest cities, we came up with this list as the 10 worst small towns in Arizona where you'd never want to live:

These are the worst small towns in Arizona for 2022:

  1. Lukachukai
  2. Ak-Chin Village
  3. Peridot
  4. Casa Blanca
  5. Blackwater
  6. Seven Mile
  7. Whiteriver
  8. Tsaile
  9. Cibecue
  10. Dolan Springs

So what is the worst small town to call home in Arizona for 2022? According to the most recent census data, Lukachukai is the worst small town to live in Arizona.

Of course, many of these cities would rank highly if they were in other states, since Arizona has its stuff figured out.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers, or scroll to the bottom to see how your town ranked.

And if you already know about the small towns, check out the best places to live in Arizona or the worst places to live in Arizona.

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

The 10 Worst Small Towns In Arizona For 2022

1. Lukachukai

Overall SnackAbility

2
/10

Population: 1,774
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $51,400 (9th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 28.2% (4th worst)
More on Lukachukai:  Data

2. Ak-Chin Village

Source: Public Domain
Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 1,202
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 2)
Median Home Value: $85,300 (36th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 23.8% (9th worst)
More on Ak-Chin Village:  Data

3. Peridot

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 1,416
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 6)
Median Home Value: $23,500 (worst)
Unemployment Rate: 33.3% (2nd worst)
More on Peridot:  Data

4. Casa Blanca

Overall SnackAbility

2
/10

Population: 1,009
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 2)
Median Home Value: $75,200 (26th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 6.7% (64th worst)
More on Casa Blanca:  Data

5. Blackwater

Overall SnackAbility

2
/10

Population: 1,740
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 3)
Median Home Value: $157,400 (75th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 24.0% (8th worst)
More on Blackwater:  Data

6. Seven Mile

Overall SnackAbility

2
/10

Population: 1,301
Rank Last Year: -
Median Home Value: $92,500 (40th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 29.0% (3rd worst)
More on Seven Mile:

7. Whiteriver

Whiteriver, AZ

Source: Wikipedia
Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 4,081
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 2)
Median Home Value: $57,700 (12th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 23.3% (10th worst)
More on Whiteriver:  Data | Photos

8. Tsaile

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 1,345
Rank Last Year: 19 (Up 11)
Median Home Value: $63,900 (16th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 17.5% (17th worst)
More on Tsaile:  Data

9. Cibecue

Overall SnackAbility

2
/10

Population: 1,834
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 4)
Median Home Value: $57,800 (13th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 26.4% (6th worst)
More on Cibecue:  Data

10. Dolan Springs

Overall SnackAbility

3
/10

Population: 1,989
Rank Last Year: 16 (Up 6)
Median Home Value: $83,600 (35th worst)
Unemployment Rate: 3.0% (87th worst)
More on Dolan Springs:  Data

How do you decide if a place is lousy or not?

In order to rank the worst small towns to live in Arizona, we had to determine what criteria people like or dislike about a place. It isn't a stretch to assume that people like low crime, solid education, things to do and a stable economy.

So we scraped the internet for those criteria, and it spit out the answer. Like magic.

How we determined the worst small towns to live in Arizona for 2022

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using FBI crime data and the Census's 2016-2020 American Community Survey, this is the criteria we used:

  • Population Density (The lower the worse)
  • Highest Unemployment Rates
  • Low housing costs (meaning there's no demand)
  • Adjusted Median Income (Median income adjusted for the cost of living)
  • Education (Number of high school dropouts)
  • High Crime

We looked at cities with populations between 1,000 and 5,000 people, of which, there were a lot - 114 to be exact.

Additional note: We get the crime numbers from the FBI, which gets its crime numbers from the cities themselves. Dropout numbers are based on the adult population, not just the current graduation rates of teenagers.

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

There You Have It - The Worst Small Towns In Arizona

If you're analyzing teeny places in the Grand Canyon State with the worst economic situations, where there's high crime and there's not a lot to do, this is an accurate list.

If you're curious enough, here are the best small towns to live in Arizona, according to science:

  1. Morenci (Pop. 1,494)
  2. Carefree (Pop. 3,863)
  3. Rio Verde (Pop. 2,327)

For more Arizona reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Worst Small Towns In Arizona

Rank Town Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
1 Lukachukai 1,774 28.2% $51,400
2 Ak-Chin Village 1,202 23.8% $85,300
3 Peridot 1,416 33.3% $23,500
4 Casa Blanca 1,009 6.7% $75,200
5 Blackwater 1,740 24.0% $157,400
6 Seven Mile 1,301 29.0% $92,500
7 Whiteriver 4,081 23.3% $57,700
8 Tsaile 1,345 17.5% $63,900
9 Cibecue 1,834 26.4% $57,800
10 Dolan Springs 1,989 3.0% $83,600
11 Dilkon 1,235 10.5% $82,900
12 Chinle 4,291 8.4% $31,600
13 Canyon Day 1,626 19.2% $59,000
14 Bylas 1,290 16.6% $32,300
15 Peach Springs 1,363 14.4% $46,100
16 Colorado City 4,873 15.6% $1,000
17 Avenue B And C 3,847 27.3% $1,000
18 Beaver Dam 1,727 12.6% $77,500
19 Sacaton 2,484 11.2% $87,700
20 Kaibito 1,755 18.6% $53,900
21 Ehrenberg 1,005 21.4% $155,900
22 Sells 2,453 26.3% $44,500
23 San Carlos 4,555 20.5% $50,300
24 Hotevilla-Bacavi 1,110 7.9% $112,500
25 Gila Bend 1,955 1.0% $103,700
26 Quartzsite 3,756 0.0% $42,700
27 Leupp 1,216 9.9% $67,700
28 Second Mesa 1,817 8.6% $102,300
29 Pirtleville 1,233 13.5% $78,900
30 Miami 1,919 10.6% $67,000
31 White Mountain Lake 2,947 13.8% $117,700
32 Fort Defiance 4,209 9.5% $33,700
33 Lechee 1,435 15.1% $81,200
34 Wellton 3,091 0.1% $78,500
35 Arivaca Junction 1,072 12.7% $92,900
36 Black Canyon City 2,685 7.1% $134,600
37 Ajo 2,691 16.0% $99,500
38 Salome 1,315 0.0% $61,700
39 Moenkopi 1,205 9.0% $1,000
40 Meadview 1,503 39.5% $102,600
41 Bouse 1,175 10.2% $95,200
42 San Manuel 3,688 9.1% $81,000
43 Shongopovi 1,219 22.2% $93,300
44 North Fork 1,963 11.5% $69,800
45 First Mesa 1,914 6.1% $65,000
46 Golden Shores 1,282 0.0% $82,700
47 Window Rock 2,451 4.8% $69,000
48 Willcox 3,507 7.1% $71,400
49 Mammoth 1,527 10.0% $70,300
50 Heber-Overgaard 2,494 18.2% $189,700
51 Tonto Basin 1,743 10.2% $152,900
52 Donovan Estates 1,325 16.1% $85,500
53 Cordes Lakes 2,662 16.1% $105,600
54 Three Points 4,620 7.0% $98,600
55 Naco 1,156 0.0% $67,400
56 Scenic 1,758 0.0% $194,400
57 Congress 1,846 12.9% $173,400
58 Fredonia 1,059 4.2% $139,100
59 Star Valley 1,457 3.8% $1,000
60 Lake Of The Woods 3,652 12.4% $159,600
61 Hondah 1,152 7.1% $75,500
62 Mayer 1,847 10.1% $115,100
63 Claypool 1,061 11.4% $95,000
64 Lake Montezuma 4,707 16.2% $201,800
65 Springerville 2,208 3.4% $110,400
66 Cienega Springs 1,969 9.9% $154,200
67 Superior 3,120 8.7% $100,300
68 Huachuca City 1,954 10.9% $95,900
69 Taylor 4,255 14.0% $201,500
70 Benson 4,857 4.2% $108,100
71 Bluewater 1,061 4.8% $56,500
72 Parker 3,174 2.3% $157,700
73 Williams 3,234 6.4% $257,000
74 Spring Valley 1,668 0.0% $126,200
75 Kykotsmovi Village 1,106 3.5% $91,900
76 Whetstone 2,995 9.5% $144,700
77 Oracle 3,932 10.5% $176,600
78 Cactus Flats 1,356 0.0% $185,400
79 Pima 2,523 5.6% $126,100
80 Valle Vista 2,800 9.7% $189,300
81 Central Heights-Midland City 2,768 5.1% $97,800
82 Tombstone 1,205 5.9% $136,300
83 Dewey-Humboldt 4,123 6.0% $217,500
84 St. Johns 3,507 1.6% $101,800
85 Strawberry 1,100 0.0% $238,600
86 St. David 1,481 4.4% $118,100
87 Six Shooter Canyon 1,208 2.6% $147,100
88 Swift Trail Junction 2,731 4.3% $101,400
89 Grand Canyon Village 2,064 0.0% $1,000
90 Clifton 3,689 1.1% $71,000
91 Red Rock Cdp (Pinal County) 4,196 8.6% $184,900
92 Cornville 3,247 12.4% $266,000
93 Clarkdale 4,367 0.8% $277,500
94 Centennial Park 1,123 5.6% $187,100
95 Mohave Valley 2,809 6.8% $167,300
96 Linden 2,507 3.3% $264,800
97 Kearny 2,431 6.6% $107,200
98 Joseph City 1,908 6.5% $134,400
99 Desert Hills 2,580 10.2% $191,600
100 Pinetop-Lakeside 4,409 2.3% $247,500

How Is The Area In ?

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.