Home PRINCIPAL 2021’s Happiest Cities In America

2021’s Happiest Cities In America

by Invitado

Adam McCann, Financial Writer

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused the average person’s stress level to increase significantly for the first time since 2007. Therefore, it’s vital for people to boost their happiness however they can, whether through family, friends, activities, entertainment or work. What people might not realize is that where they live may also determine how happy they are.

Location plays a hand in how bright or gloomy our days are. For years, researchers have studied the science of happiness and found that its key ingredients include a positive mental state, healthy body, strong social connections, job satisfaction and financial well-being. However, money can only make you so happy – people who make $75,000 a year won’t get any higher satisfaction from more money. Consider also the fact that while the U.S. is one of the richest countries, it ranks only 18th on the World Happiness Report.

But not everywhere in the U.S. experiences a uniform level of happiness. As this study aims to illustrate, moving to a certain city may help you be more content. WalletHub drew upon the various findings of positive-psychology research in order to determine which among more than 180 of the largest U.S. cities is home to the happiest people in America. We examined each city based on 31 key indicators of happiness, ranging from the depression rate to the income-growth rate to average leisure time spent per day.

To see which states combine all the necessary components of happiness, check out WalletHub’s report on the Happiest States in America.

Happiest Cities in the U.S.

Overall Rank  City Total Score  Emotional & Physical Well-Being  Income & Employment  Community & Environment 
1 Fremont, CA 73.66 1 46 5
2 Bismarck, ND 71.59 5 5 23
3 Fargo, ND 70.94 9 3 17
4 Madison, WI 70.14 13 6 14
5 San Jose, CA 69.47 2 21 75
6 South Burlington, VT 68.73 8 11 61
7 Lincoln, NE 68.35 14 10 20
8 Columbia, MD 67.73 4 95 102
9 Cedar Rapids, IA 67.64 11 74 19
10 Santa Rosa, CA 67.59 7 32 33
11 Sioux Falls, SD 67.43 24 23 12
12 Irvine, CA 67.27 15 18 31
13 San Francisco, CA 67.11 3 15 131
14 Pearl City, HI 66.58 16 114 6
15 Burlington, VT 66.19 26 1 111
16 Minneapolis, MN 65.98 6 28 115
17 Plano, TX 65.87 21 44 26
18 Charleston, SC 65.10 43 16 9
19 Rapid City, SD 65.00 51 14 1
20 Seattle, WA 64.74 10 2 161
21 Boise, ID 64.55 33 13 46
22 Honolulu, HI 64.45 19 112 15
23 Portland, ME 64.40 32 17 74
24 St. Paul, MN 64.31 22 56 66
25 Scottsdale, AZ 64.22 53 48 3
26 San Diego, CA 64.17 30 39 25
27 Austin, TX 64.13 20 24 94
28 Overland Park, KS 64.09 41 12 30
29 Missoula, MT 63.76 29 19 83
30 Grand Rapids, MI 63.56 48 20 16
31 Cape Coral, FL 63.23 54 52 4
32 Raleigh, NC 62.97 28 70 67
33 Huntington Beach, CA 62.95 25 64 98
34 Aurora, CO 62.56 17 150 47
35 Omaha, NE 62.53 46 26 36
36 Des Moines, IA 62.33 37 88 29
37 Gilbert, AZ 62.09 62 47 13
38 Oakland, CA 61.38 12 127 147
39 Durham, NC 61.18 34 49 80
40 Garden Grove, CA 60.81 45 96 32
41 Anaheim, CA 60.81 40 87 55
42 Aurora, IL 60.57 31 152 73
43 Portland, OR 60.52 35 41 118
44 Oceanside, CA 60.50 36 101 60
45 Chula Vista, CA 60.24 38 111 54
46 Virginia Beach, VA 60.09 49 80 43
47 Oxnard, CA 60.02 64 109 10
48 Nampa, ID 59.97 70 60 18
49 Chandler, AZ 59.86 67 76 24
50 Nashua, NH 59.84 59 40 56
51 Washington, DC 59.59 23 69 166
52 Peoria, AZ 59.43 77 92 8
53 Port St. Lucie, FL 59.33 86 71 11
54 Santa Clarita, CA 59.26 44 149 39
55 Tempe, AZ 59.17 84 42 22
56 Colorado Springs, CO 59.07 56 66 85
57 Sacramento, CA 59.07 52 53 95
58 Glendale, CA 58.93 55 136 27
59 Salt Lake City, UT 58.51 57 22 145
60 Denver, CO 58.32 27 124 160
61 Boston, MA 58.24 50 37 130
62 Reno, NV 58.16 80 55 51
63 Amarillo, TX 58.08 71 67 41
64 Juneau, AK 57.96 18 8 182
65 Pembroke Pines, FL 57.94 88 134 7
66 Santa Ana, CA 57.85 61 61 101
67 Charlotte, NC 57.79 58 99 90
68 Chesapeake, VA 57.74 94 105 21
69 Manchester, NH 57.66 76 65 49
70 Grand Prairie, TX 57.20 85 90 34
71 Rancho Cucamonga, CA 57.06 93 36 81
72 Anchorage, AK 56.99 39 29 177
73 Billings, MT 56.92 90 25 104
74 Vancouver, WA 56.89 47 102 148
75 Yonkers, NY 56.89 60 146 79
76 Pittsburgh, PA 56.28 100 45 70
77 Garland, TX 56.24 78 108 86
78 Cheyenne, WY 56.08 72 9 176
79 Columbia, SC 56.08 128 4 45
80 Tallahassee, FL 55.99 96 43 93
81 Nashville, TN 55.93 104 77 35
82 Mesa, AZ 55.92 97 118 42
83 Fort Worth, TX 55.76 75 131 87
84 Chicago, IL 55.65 42 174 103
85 Irving, TX 55.31 73 63 144
86 Tampa, FL 55.23 111 58 50
87 West Valley City, UT 55.23 81 62 135
88 Lewiston, ME 55.13 130 7 84
89 Riverside, CA 54.79 83 34 155
90 Atlanta, GA 54.75 79 104 116
91 Huntsville, AL 54.70 155 31 2
92 Tacoma, WA 54.59 66 129 149
93 Moreno Valley, CA 54.48 95 125 78
94 Fort Wayne, IN 54.45 105 117 65
95 Springfield, MO 54.24 136 27 63
96 Casper, WY 54.21 65 93 169
97 Lexington-Fayette, KY 54.20 119 54 76
98 Fort Lauderdale, FL 54.12 99 137 58
99 Los Angeles, CA 53.99 69 132 139
100 Salem, OR 53.95 108 35 123
101 Las Cruces, NM 53.72 113 107 40
102 Arlington, TX 53.58 87 140 113
103 Modesto, CA 53.37 110 57 107
104 Dallas, TX 53.30 74 128 150
105 Ontario, CA 53.27 121 68 88
106 Spokane, WA 53.10 112 50 125
107 Fontana, CA 52.96 120 94 71
108 Jersey City, NJ 52.88 82 177 82
109 St. Petersburg, FL 52.57 124 51 112
110 Columbus, OH 52.48 106 110 117
111 Jacksonville, FL 52.41 137 98 52
112 Long Beach, CA 52.39 68 171 141
113 Bridgeport, CT 52.37 63 176 106
114 Milwaukee, WI 52.28 91 162 114
115 Henderson, NV 52.26 101 170 68
116 Warwick, RI 52.07 133 78 69
117 Lubbock, TX 51.93 116 33 157
118 Kansas City, MO 51.90 102 121 140
119 Glendale, AZ 51.71 107 145 110
120 Albuquerque, NM 51.04 89 72 178
121 Orlando, FL 50.93 129 97 105
122 New York, NY 50.91 109 178 57
123 Houston, TX 50.83 92 159 156
124 Rochester, NY 50.52 118 135 129
125 Brownsville, TX 50.21 151 122 28
126 Phoenix, AZ 50.13 103 148 158
127 Winston-Salem, NC 49.92 134 84 134
128 El Paso, TX 49.92 146 142 62
129 Fort Smith, AR 49.83 158 75 48
130 Miami, FL 49.82 126 133 128
131 Richmond, VA 49.68 117 144 146
132 Greensboro, NC 49.51 123 85 159
133 Jackson, MS 49.41 131 154 96
134 Norfolk, VA 49.35 122 160 126
135 Buffalo, NY 49.18 141 115 119
136 Indianapolis, IN 49.14 115 169 121
137 Corpus Christi, TX 49.11 132 103 151
138 Worcester, MA 48.92 114 126 172
139 Chattanooga, TN 48.84 159 79 77
140 Knoxville, TN 48.66 170 30 72
141 San Antonio, TX 48.61 145 89 133
142 Tucson, AZ 48.37 142 100 142
143 Oklahoma City, OK 48.36 144 113 132
144 New Haven, CT 48.16 98 153 175
145 Providence, RI 47.95 167 82 53
146 Wichita, KS 47.87 140 106 163
147 Little Rock, AR 47.56 150 165 64
148 Shreveport, LA 47.55 149 168 59
149 Cincinnati, OH 47.43 139 83 173
150 Stockton, CA 47.13 127 139 167
151 Las Vegas, NV 47.04 138 178 99
152 New Orleans, LA 47.00 143 156 138
153 Louisville, KY 46.55 164 123 97
154 Akron, OH 46.48 156 150 100
155 Bakersfield, CA 46.44 160 120 136
156 Fresno, CA 46.43 154 73 165
157 Baltimore, MD 46.23 125 173 164
158 Hialeah, FL 46.02 135 175 153
159 North Las Vegas, NV 45.92 147 181 91
160 Philadelphia, PA 45.80 165 158 89
161 Laredo, TX 45.72 166 86 143
162 Baton Rouge, LA 45.54 161 91 152
163 Newport News, VA 45.26 152 166 124
164 Charleston, WV 45.15 172 81 109
165 San Bernardino, CA 44.66 148 155 168
166 St. Louis, MO 44.30 157 147 162
167 Newark, NJ 43.97 153 182 108
168 Wilmington, DE 43.90 162 116 170
169 Birmingham, AL 43.87 169 143 137
170 Gulfport, MS 43.80 180 130 44
171 Columbus, GA 43.72 179 138 38
172 Tulsa, OK 43.32 163 119 171
173 Mobile, AL 43.24 173 161 92
174 Fayetteville, NC 42.55 171 163 127
175 Huntington, WV 42.50 181 38 122
176 Dover, DE 42.40 174 59 179
177 Montgomery, AL 42.37 177 164 37
178 Toledo, OH 42.18 176 141 154
179 Memphis, TN 40.16 168 172 174
180 Augusta, GA 38.76 182 157 120
181 Cleveland, OH 37.48 175 167 181
182 Detroit, MI 34.29 178 180 180

Note: With the exception of “Total Score,” all of the columns in the table above depict the relative rank of that city, where a rank of 1 represents the best conditions for that metric category.

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