Most Americans have never been to Missouri. However, as the people who live there know, Missouri is an awesome state.
But is it all roses? Definitely not. Just like any other state, Missouri has its trouble spots. This article aims to determine, using science, the absolute worst small towns to live in the Show Me State. Don’t shoot the messenger, this is all using data.
After analyzing more than 462 of Missouri’s smallest cities, we came up with this list as the 10 worst small towns in Missouri where you’d never want to live:
- Mill Spring
- Macks Creek
- Birch Tree
- Iron Mountain Lake
- Haywood City
- Hayti Heights
- Des Arc
Of course, many of these cities would rank highly if they were in other states, since Missouri 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.
How do you decide if a place is lousy or not?
In order to rank the worst small towns to live in Missouri, 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 crunched the numbers
We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using FBI crime data, the Census’s 2010-2014 American Community Survey, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 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 100 and 1,000 people, of which, there were a lot – 462 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.
1. Mill Spring
Population: 132 Median Income: $16,458
Median Home Value: $23,100
2. Macks Creek
Population: 360 Median Income: $20,357
Median Home Value: $51,900
3. Birch Tree
Population: 534 Median Income: $15,347
Median Home Value: $55,400
4. Iron Mountain Lake
Population: 800 Median Income: $25,670
Median Home Value: $35,500
Population: 439 Median Income: $21,354
Median Home Value: $28,500
Population: 454 Median Income: $26,071
Median Home Value: $36,800
7. Haywood City
Population: 167 Median Income: $19,375
Median Home Value: $28,600
8. Hayti Heights
Population: 578 Median Income: $13,750
Median Home Value: $28,000
9. Des Arc
Population: 158 Median Income: $27,500
Median Home Value: $38,300
Population: 449 Median Income: $20,288
Median Home Value: $61,500
There You Have It – The Worst Small Towns In Missouri
If you’re analyzing teeny places in the Show Me 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 Missouri, according to science.
- Best: Country Life Acres
- 2nd Best: Crystal Lake Park
- 3rd Best: Pasadena Park
For more reading, check out:
Ranking Of The 100 Worst Small Towns In Missouri
|Iron Mountain Lake||4|
|Oak Grove Village||97|