When looking for the best place to raise a family, we are lucky to have so many options in Iowa. Many of our cities and towns have been nationally ranked for qualities like safety, low cost of living, and great education. Recently, a website called
Niche released a list of the best towns in Iowa for raising a family. Niche is an online community data source focused specifically on helping students, families, and professionals make major life decisions. To determine the best places in Iowa, they looked at factors like crime, education, access to libraries and grocery stores and much more. To see the full article and rating methodology, click here.
Grinnell, a city of just under 10,000 located in Poweshiek County, has good education, a low cost of living, and a safe community - making it one of the best places in Iowa to raise a family.
14. West Des Moines
West Des Moines has also been ranked on the list of most educated cities and best places to live in Iowa, so it's not all that surprising that it made the list of best places to raise a family. With big city amenities but small town community and safety - it's a pretty great place to call home!
Located in northwest Iowa, Spencer is a town of around 11,000 people that comes in at number 13 on the list of best places in Iowa to raise a family. Spencer is safe, has great education, and cheap housing.
Located in Delaware County, Manchester offers a ton of great amenities for families, such as awesome parks, great education, cheap housing, and more.
11. De Witt
Located in Clinton County, this town of around 5,000 is the 11th best place in Iowa to raise a family. Why? Well, it's safe, there's good education, and cheap housing, that's why.
10. Le Mars
Just the fact that you live in the Ice Cream Capital of the World is enough to make anyone happy - so it's no surprise that Le Mars is not only one of the happiest cities, but also a great place to raise a family.
9. Iowa City
Iowa City is a noted literary city, which is well-known for their excellent education. Clearly this is a great place to raise your family - your kids are going to be raised around some pretty smart folks!
Winterset, offers great education and a safe environment, making it the eighth best place to raise a family in Iowa. Plus, your family will have plenty to do with the Bridges of Madison County nearby, and the John Wayne Birthplace Museum right in town.
Waverly, a city of just under 10,000, is close enough to Waterloo/Cedar Falls for easy access to amenities, but far enough to give it that small town community charm. The town is also home to Wartburg College.
This charming town is the sixth best place to raise a family in Iowa. Anamosa is safe, has affordable housing, and offers great education for the young ones.
It's no secret that the little Dutch city of Pella is an awesome place to visit, but it's also a great place to raise a family. The area offers plenty of parks and amenities, great education, and a unique community that you won't find anywhere else.
Home to Iowa State University, Ames offers some of the very best education in the state, as well as a mid-sized community that offers plenty of fun in a safe environment.
Carroll is the third best place in the state to raise a family. Much like the rest of the towns, Carroll has great education, it's safe, and the housing is affordable.
Decorah, a buzzing cultural hub in northeast Iowa, was named the second best place in the state to raise a family. Decorah has excellent education, it's safe, and the town offers a truly great community.
1. Orange City
Also the happiest city in the state, Orange City is the number one town in Iowa to raise a family. Orange City has great education, a great sense of community, and a safe environment to offer families.
Were you surprised by any of the results? If nothing else, this definitely confirms what we’ve known all along – Iowa has some of the loveliest small towns and cities in the nation, with plenty of great places to raise your children!