What are the Best Metro Areas for Millennials?

Top 10 Metros for Millennials

The top 10 metros for Millennials include many up-and-coming cities in the Midwest. Source: Apartment List.

Millennials are the most mobile generation, frequently packing up and moving for better jobs, less expensive housing and more interesting social opportunities.

Apartment List compiled data from more than 24,000 Millennials about the strength of the job market, the affordability of housing and the livability of the area to determine the Top 10 Metros for Millennials.

1. Pittsburgh, Pa.

With tech giants such as Apple, Facebook and Google opening offices in Pittsburg, this city has a thriving job market that attracts young, educated Millennials looking for interesting, high-paying work. In addition to the great jobs, Pittsburg has low crime rates and a friendly population that makes becoming part of the community fun.

2. Provo, Utah

Provo is one of the best metros in the country for Millennials looking to save up and buy a new home. The area has incredibly low Millennial unemployment rates and a wide range of affordable housing, perfect for anyone looking to increase savings or enjoy a more exciting lifestyle. Less than an hour’s drive to Salt Lake City and surrounded by beautiful natural scenery, Provo is an up-and-coming city.

3. Madison, Wis.

Many Millennials feel drawn to the college town of Madison, Wis., and want to stay. This metro area has low Millennial unemployment rates and high wage rates, making it easy for them to enjoy the area’s great dating and entertainment scene.

4. San Antonio, Texas

Texas metros like San Antonio are great for Millennials that want to enjoy an affordable, but exciting lifestyle, great jobs and beautiful natural settings. San Antonio has a growing economy and a unique culture that make it an exciting place to live. No longer seen as the little cousin to Austin, San Antonio is a Millennial’s paradise with great dining, shopping and entertainment, without the saturation and high cost of living that Austin suffers from.

5. Columbus, Ohio

Unlike other areas around Columbus, Ohio, this metro has a stronger job market, making it an obvious choice for anyone looking to settle down. In addition to its affordable cost of living, Columbus has a lively restaurant, bar and music scene. A zoo, museums and lots of green space round out the plethora of things to keep any Millennials entertained.

6. Charleston, S.C.

Of the metros studied in Apartment List’s study, Charleston, S.C., had the highest livability ratings, making it a great place for Millennials looking to live it up close to the coast. Unlike other costal metros, Charleston is affordable enough for Millennials to live comfortably. An up-and-coming restaurant scene is another reason this metro is a Millennials destination.

7. Omaha, Neb.

Even on a list of best metros for Millennials, Omaha stands out for its affordability. In addition to an affordable cost of living, Omaha has a strong job market and an interesting art scene for its residents, not to mention a great music scene, thanks to bands like Bright Eyes, 311, The Faint, Cursive and Tilly and the Wall.

8. Oklahoma City, Okla.

Another affordable college town, Oklahoma City has something for everyone. This exciting metro has quirky culture with great bars, art and restaurants. The surrounding landscape is perfect for anyone who loves spending time outdoors.

9. Houston

High ratings for its strong job market, livability and affordability make the Houston metro area a fantastic place for Millennials. This great city has world-class museums, one of the best art scenes in the country and amazing restaurants and parks. 

10. Minneapolis, Minn.

Of all the metros studied, Minneapolis had the highest share of Millennial homeownership, in addition to high wages compared to rents. The main city in the Twin City group, Minneapolis has great restaurants and an exciting music scene.  

Conversely, the worst metros for Millennials topped the list because of weak job markets and low quality of life (includes dating, entertainment and cost of living). These are the worst markets, as scored by Apartment List, in order from worst to least worst: 1) Riverside, Calif.; 2) Bridgeport, Ct.; 3) Orlando; 4) North Port, Fla.; 5) Sacramento, Calif.; 6) Worcester, Mass.; 7) Miami; 8) Providence, R.I.; 9) Oxnard, Calif.; and 10) New Haven, Ct.

As Millennials look for their next adventure, or look to settle down in a vibrant area, they should keep these cities in mind for their next home.

After graduating in 2016 from The University of Texas with a degree in English, Sanda Brown became a SEO Associate for (...more)

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