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Not everyone is cut out for city life. Some people would prefer to live in the cities and towns that surround Stockton.
So the question arises, do the suburbs maintain a semblance of the larger-than-life appeal of their more famous neighbor?
Today, we'll use science and data to determine which Stockton 'burbs need a little tender loving care - the sore thumbs of the Stockton area if you will. Realistically, you can't expect all the suburbs to live up to Stockton proper, although Brentwood certainly tries.
Of course, not all suburbs of Stockton are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones..
We examined the 16 biggest suburbs of Stockton to find out the worst places to live. And while you won't necessarily find them on the worst places to live in California lists, these ten places are a little too far downwind of Stockton in terms of quality of life.
What's the worst suburb of Stockton? Lodi ranks as the worst suburb of Stockton for 2022 based on the most recent Census and FBI data.
Read on to see how we determined the places around Stockton that need a pick-me-up. And remember, don't blame the messenger.
And remember, there are some good places to live around Stockton too.
Editor's Note: If you see a slight difference between the worst in state rankings and this suburb ranking, it's because of the methodology. We needed a way to include more places, so we eliminated crime and commute times as criteria for this analysis.
For more California reading, check out:
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The 10 Worst Stockton Suburbs To Live For 2022
We'll get the ball rolling with Lodi, the absolute worst place to live around Stockton according to the data.
And in the world of worst rankings, Lodi beat the competition pretty handily thanks to scoring in the bottom 15% in three major categories. Income is the 3rd worst in the Stockton area, and to make matters worse, the city ranks 5th worst when it comes to home values.
But hey, at least it's cheap to live there. But there's a reason for that... it's Lodi.
You won't feel bad about not having a great income for the area, there aren't a bunch of places to spend your money anyway.
Welcome to Modesto. Home to KMart, Big Lots, and a lot of gas stations.
This city is 28.9 miles to Stockton. Income levels here are the 2nd lowest in the metro area, where families bring in about $62,182 a year, which doesn't go a long ways even on a shoestring budget.
But on the bright side, there are a lot of fast food joints in the area.
Back up the highway we go for the third worst Stockton suburb you can live in. You might have expected to see Lathrop on here. While the cost of living is low, your entertainment and work options are limited. And that's an understatement.
In terms of numbers, it's in the worst 15% for insurance, and the adult high school drop out rate is poor compared to other Stockton suburbs.
But at least there are nice parks to bring the kids during the day.
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 1)
Median Income: $90,179 (13th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 7.0% (7th highest)
Median Home Value: $385,900 (8th lowest)
More on Lathrop: Data
If you live in Oakdale, most likely you struggle to make ends meet every month. It ranks as the 5th lowest Stockton suburb when it comes to residents making money.
Not only that, but this is the worst unemployed suburb you can live in if you choose to live near Stockton. Remember, we looked at 16 cities for this study.
Oakdale is about 29.4 miles to downtown.
Rio Vista has the distinction of being a Stockton suburb. Which means that's about all it has going for it.
All snarkiness aside, Rio Vista has the 7th lowest home values in the metro Stockton area, where the median price is $369,200. To put that into perspective, in Brentwood, the median income is $113,298, which is the best in the area.
Rio Vista has an unemployment rate of 10.77% which ranks 2nd worst.
Riverbank has 24,623 residents that probably know it's a pretty crummy place to live when you look at the data. (Or, if you've ever been there, you don't need to look at the data.)
Incomes are towards the bottom and the poverty rate sits at 12.892555233389144%.
Ah, Antioch. You rank as the 7th worst place to live around Stockton.
It's the place with the 4th most out of work residents in the Stockton metro area (8.52%).
Galt is a city about 20.1 miles from Stockton, but Stockton probably wishes it was further away. It ranks as the 8th worst burb for 2018.
You'd be hard pressed to find a worse place to live. Galt has the 8th most uninsured people, 8th worst incomes, and has the 8th highest unemployment rate (6.71%) in the entire Stockton metro area.
Homes only cost $356,700 for a reason. That's cheap for Stockton standards.
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Median Income: $73,969 (8th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 6.7% (8th highest)
Median Home Value: $356,700 (6th lowest)
More on Galt: Data
If you absolutely have to live near Stockton, then Escalon might be a place for you to consider as it's only the 9th worst Stockton suburb.
About 7.2% of residents are out of work.
Rounding out the ten worst Stockton suburbs to call home is Manteca.
Located 13.6 miles outside the city, Mantecas is a real pit when you look at the data. Its residents have the 9th highest unemployment rate (6.67%), and poverty is far above the area average.
Methodology: Determining The Worst Suburbs Around Stockton for 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 cities have the least amount of those things.
We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent American Community Survey data from 2016-2020, this is the criteria we used:
- High unemployment rate
- Low median household incomes
- Low population density (no things to do)
- Low home values
- A lot of high school drop outs
- High poverty
- High rate of uninsured families
FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Stockton.
Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 4,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 16 suburbs to evaluate around Stockton.
We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 16 in each category, where 1 was the "worst".
Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.
And finally, we crowned the city with the worst quality of life index the "Worst Suburb near Stockton." We're lookin' at you, Lodi. You can download the data here.
Read on below to learn more about what it's like to live in the worst of the worst. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from worst to best.
Summary: The areas around Stockton where the dream is more of a nightmare for 2022
Well there you have it -- the worst of the 'burbs surrounding Stockton with Lodi casting itself ahead of the pack.
As we mentioned earlier, the suburbs around Stockton aren't all bad. Brentwood takes the cake as the best place to live around Stockton.
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Detailed List Of The Worst Stockton Suburbs