The 25 best US cities for veterans to live, ranked

Members of the US armed forces hold a flag during the Veteran's Day parade in New York.

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Members of the US armed forces hold a flag during the Veteran’s Day parade in New York.
source
Reuters
  • According to the Veterans Association, there are currently more than 19.2 million veterans living in America.
  • However, when it comes to adjusting to civilian life, some areas of the country are better for veterans than others.
  • WalletHub ranked the 100 largest US cities in four major categories – employment, economy, quality of life, and health – to determine the best cities for veterans to live in after leaving the service.
  • The top three best US cities for veterans to call home are Tampa, Florida; Austin, Texas; and Orlando, Florida.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

For the more than 19 million veterans currently living in the United States, where you live can be essential to your access to healthcare, good employment, and a strong quality of life.

WalletHub conducted a report of the best US cities for veterans, analyzing 20 key indicators of livability, affordability, and veteran-friendliness. The study then provided rankings – out of 100 – for each category.

Employment rankings took into account the number of veteran-owned businesses per veteran population and opportunities for job growth, as well as the availability of jobs that utilize military-learned skills. Economy rankings considered factors such as the median veteran income and veteran homelessness rates, while quality of life was determined by analyzing veteran population, restaurants with military discounts, and more.

The study found that Tampa, Florida, triumphed as the best major US city for veterans, earning a total score of 72.44 out of a possible 100. Boston, Massachusetts, despite ranking at No. 68 overall, earned the highest ranking for veteran employment.

Keep reading to find out the top 25 best US cities for veterans.


25. Lincoln, Nebraska

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A Nebraska Cornhuskers game.
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Eric Francis/Getty Images

Total score: 60.69

Employment (ranked out of 100): 49th

Economy (ranked out of 100): 8th

Quality of life (ranked out of 100): 29th

Health (ranked out of 100): 94th


24. Durham, North Carolina

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Durham.
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Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Total score: 60.72

Employment: 15th

Economy: 55th

Quality of life: 28th

Health: 42nd


23. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

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Oklahoma City.
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val lawless/Shutterstock

Total score: 60.85

Employment: 14th

Economy: 10th

Quality of life: 18th

Health: 84th


22. Chesapeake, Virginia

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Mary Garcia, of Chesapeake, Virginia, bears the flag as part of the National Marine Corps League Auxiliary.
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Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post/Getty Images

Total score: 61.25

Employment: 57th

Economy: 13th

Quality of life: 26th

Health: 61st


21. San Antonio, Texas

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San Antonio.
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AbeSnap23/Getty Images

Total score: 61.34

Employment: 29th

Economy: 27th

Quality of life: 19th

Health: 47th


20. Denver, Colorado

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Denver.
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Dermot Conlan/Getty Images

Total score: 61.79

Employment: 6th

Economy: 50th

Quality of life: 12th

Health: 79th


19. Laredo, Texas

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Laredo.
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Georgia National Guard/Flickr

Total score: 61.80

Employment: 33rd

Economy: 1st

Quality of life: 78th

Health: 20th


18. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

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Pittsburgh.
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peeterv/Getty Images

Total score: 61.96

Employment: 20th

Economy: 72nd

Quality of life: 25th

Health: 30th


17. Columbus, Ohio

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Columbus.
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benedek/Getty Images

Total score: 62.16

Employment: 24th

Economy: 14th

Quality of life: 37th

Health: 54th


16. Boise, Idaho

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An American flag hanging in the Idaho Capitol Building in Boise.
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Steve Smith/Getty Images

Total score: 62.71

Employment: 21st

Economy: 36th

Quality of life: 4th

Health: 89th


15. San Diego, California

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Members of the US Navy pull out an American flag at Petco Park in San Diego, California.
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Donald Miralle/Getty Images

Total score: 62.75

Employment: 47th

Economy: 78th

Quality of life: 2nd

Health: 35th


14. Plano, Texas

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Plano.
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Shutterstock

Total score: 63.23

Employment: 82nd

Economy: 44th

Quality of life: 10th

Health: 20th


13. Fort Worth, Texas

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Fort Worth.
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Gereon Zwosta/EyeEm/Getty Images

Total score: 63.35

Employment: 70th

Economy: 5th

Quality of life: 32nd

Health: 20th


12. Irvine, California

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Irvine.
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LagunaticPhoto/Shutterstock

Total score: 63.66

Employment: 50th

Economy: 40th

Quality of life: 41st

Health: 1st


11. Madison, Wisconsin

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Madison.
source
Shutterstock

Total score: 64.50

Employment: 27th

Economy: 6th

Quality of life: 21st

Health: 40th


10. Jacksonville, Florida

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Military personnel stand for the national anthem during a Thursday Night Football game at EverBank Field in Jacksonville.
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Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

Total score: 65.50

Employment: 23rd

Economy: 20th

Quality of life: 36th

Health: 13th


9. St. Petersburg, Florida

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St. Petersburg.
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Tar_Heel_Rob/Getty Images

Total score: 65.67

Employment: 51st

Economy: 18th

Quality of life: 23rd

Health: 13th


8. Gilbert, Arizona

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Gilbert.
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Tim Roberts Photography/Shutterstock

Total score: 67.73

Employment: 40th

Economy: 3rd

Quality of life: 15th

Health: 64th


7. Virginia Beach, Virginia

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Virginia Beach.
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Visit Virginia Beach/Facebook

Total score: 68.13

Employment: 62nd

Economy: 2nd

Quality of life: 11th

Health: 61st


6. Colorado Springs, Colorado

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Colorado Springs.
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RiverNorthPhotography/Getty Images

Total score: 70.06

Employment: 17th

Economy: 24th

Quality of life: 5th

Health: 49th


5. Scottsdale, Arizona

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Scottsdale.
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Slim Aarons/Getty Images

Total score: 71.45

Employment: 12th

Economy: 9th

Quality of life: 3rd

Health: 64th


4. Raleigh, North Carolina

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A general view of the Memorial Belltower on campus of North Carolina State University.
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Lance King/Replay Photos/Getty Images

Total score: 71.78

Employment: 5th

Economy: 4th

Quality of life: 14th

Health: 70th


3. Orlando, Florida

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Orlando.
source
Shutterstock

Total score: 71.94

Employment: 3rd

Economy: 16th

Quality of life: 9th

Health: 32nd


2. Austin, Texas

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Austin.
source
Shutterstock

Total score: 72.22

Employment: 11th

Economy: 17th

Quality of life: 7th

Health: 20th


1. Tampa, Florida

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A view of the waterfront promenade and downtown Tampa, Florida.
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benedek/Getty Images

Total score: 72.44

Employment: 8th

Economy: 12th

Quality of life: 6th

Health: 16th