Best for Vets: Places to Live 2015

The story | The methodology

Medium Cities

Large Cities | Small Cities

 
Population
 
Median income
Unemployment rate
 
Rank City Overall Veteran Military Median home price Median monthly rent Nonveteran Veteran Civilian Veteran Number of installations within 50 miles (nearest) Number of VA health facilities within 50 miles Number of VA benefits facilities within 75 miles 2013 crime reports per 1,000 people Average travel time to work in minutes Great- Schools rating Best for Vets organizations within 50 miles

Best Medium Cities: 75,000 to 250,000 people

1 Alexandria, Va. 121,326 9,995 1,208 $462,500 $1,592 $47,648 $95,218 4.5% 0.4% 19 (Headquarters, Marine Corps) 25 16 21.8 30.9 4 C B E F L
2 Arlington, Va. 184,191 11,938 3,385 $598,200 $1,820 $60,954 $95,724 3.5% 1.3% 19 (Fort Myer) 25 16 no data 27.6 7 C B E F L
3 Centennial, Colo. 80,433 5,893 104 $289,400 $1,263 $38,983 $48,791 5.7% no data 2 (Buckley AFB) 9 7 12.7 26.7 8 C T B E F L
4 Mission Viejo, Calif. 76,267 6,958 171 $568,700 $1,950 $42,243 $53,115 6.7% 6.4% 4 (Camp Pendleton) 25 10 11.1 no data 8 C B E F
5 Arvada, Colo. 85,579 8,537 37 $249,200 $1,022 $35,971 $41,581 5.4% 3.6% 1 (Buckley AFB) 11 2 25.6 27 7 C T B E F L
6 Olathe, Kan. 93,127 6,594 28 $197,000 $853 $35,154 $46,502 5.6% no data 1 (Fort Leavenworth) 15 2 18.7 20.3 7 C B E F
7 Surprise, Ariz. 92,150 15,335 467 $192,000 $1,099 $31,120 $46,933 5.0% 1.0% 1 (Luke AFB) 10 4 18.5 no data 6 F L
8 Hampton, Va. 102,888 18,269 3,992 $185,200 $971 $26,149 $41,324 9.1% 6.4% 12 (Langley AFB) 4 7 35.4 22.5 4 C T B F L
9 Newport News, Va. 132,148 18,791 6,782 $184,600 $894 $25,962 $44,588 8.2% 3.8% 13 (Fort Eustis) 4 7 36.1 23.4 3 C T B F L
10 Cary, N.C. 112,003 6,998 55 $302,200 $1,027 $45,983 $49,718 4.6% 3.2% 2 (Pope AFB) 11 3 14.6 22.7 9 C T F
11 Overland Park, Kan. 137,061 10,142 46 $228,500 $974 $37,155 $41,500 4.2% 1.1% 1 (Fort Leavenworth) 13 2 21.1 20.8 8 C B E F
12 Torrance, Calif. 117,074 7,363 143 $630,600 $1,422 $38,054 $44,262 7.5% 7.0% 2 (Los Angeles AFB) 22 7 21.5 27 8 C T B E F
13 Brandon, Fla. 85,047 9,650 771 $144,900 $1,043 $28,729 $50,253 7.7% 5.2% 1 (MacDill AFB) 19 3 no data 25.8 6 C B F L
14 Irvine, Calif. 187,110 6,699 0 $662,000 $1,868 $41,431 $61,470 7.0% 4.9% 4 (NWS Seal Beach) 26 8 16.6 24.6 10 C T B E F
15 Chesapeake, Va. 167,660 25,190 6,166 $253,900 $1,166 $31,581 $50,003 8.5% 1.9% 12 (NSA Northwest Annex) 5 7 30.3 24.8 6 C T B F L
16 Bellevue, Wash. 105,044 5,650 0 $551,300 $1,494 $43,330 $58,140 7.1% 5.8% 6 (NB Kitsap-Bremerton) 11 7 31.9 22.2 8 C E F L
17 Carlsbad, Calif. 84,170 7,192 871 $617,400 $1,701 $42,315 $53,217 8.6% 17.9% 10 (Camp Pendleton) 15 8 20.9 no data 9 C B F L
18 Lakewood, Colo. 119,179 11,192 41 $245,000 $985 $30,782 $40,522 7.4% 4.2% 1 (Buckley AFB) 8 7 51.7 24.4 6 C T B E F L
19 Columbia, Md. 79,977 6,758 0 $361,000 $1,540 $50,849 $67,375 5.8% 14.7% 18 (Fort George G. Meade) 25 18 no data 30.8 6 C B E F L
20 Chula Vista, Calif. 182,073 17,036 2,905 $356,300 $1,217 $26,220 $51,742 9.4% 9.4% 9 (San Diego NAVSTA) 11 8 23 27.4 7 C B F L
21 Thousand Oaks, Calif. 100,718 6,519 108 $595,100 $1,839 $40,767 $60,702 8.4% 2.5% 2 (Port Hueneme NCBC) 16 4 13.5 25.5 8 C T B E F
22 Charleston, S.C. 105,542 9,382 402 $241,500 $970 $30,425 $44,868 6.6% 3.5% 3 (NWS Charleston) 3 1 29.3 19.6 7 T F
23 Burbank, Calif. 83,755 5,414 174 $565,400 $1,386 $32,553 $47,573 8.9% 1.8% 2 (Los Angeles AFB) 23 5 24.8 25.6 7 C T B E F
24 Simi Valley, Calif. 97,658 6,707 125 $442,900 $1,597 $37,915 $41,961 6.4% 3.0% 2 (Port Hueneme) 17 5 14.6 29.6 6 C T B E F
25 Norfolk, Va. 172,056 26,854 23,887 $189,900 $956 $22,545 $37,484 9.8% 4.9% 12 (Norfolk Naval Base) 5 7 51.9 21 4 C T B F L
    Key to Best for Vets categories:
  • C Colleges
  • T Technical and Career Colleges
  • B Business Schools
  • E Employers
  • F Franchises
  • L Law Enforcement