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.

caption
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 recently 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

caption
A Nebraska Cornhuskers game.
source
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

caption
Durham.
source
Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Total score: 60.72

Employment: 15

Economy: 55

Quality of life: 28

Health: 42


23. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

caption
Oklahoma City.
source
val lawless/Shutterstock

Total score: 60.85

Employment: 14

Economy: 10

Quality of life: 18

Health: 84


22. Chesapeake, Virginia

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

Total score: 61.25

Employment: 57

Economy: 13

Quality of life: 26

Health: 61


21. San Antonio, Texas

caption
San Antonio.
source
AbeSnap23/Getty Images

Total score: 61.34

Employment: 29

Economy: 27

Quality of life: 19

Health: 47


20. Denver, Colorado

caption
Denver.
source
Dermot Conlan/Getty Images

Total score: 61.79

Employment: 6

Economy: 50

Quality of life: 12

Health: 79


19. Laredo, Texas

caption
Laredo.
source
Georgia National Guard/Flickr

Total score: 61.80

Employment: 33

Economy: 1

Quality of life: 78

Health: 20


18. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

caption
Pittsburgh.
source
peeterv/Getty Images

Total score: 61.96

Employment: 20

Economy: 72

Quality of life: 25

Health: 30


17. Columbus, Ohio

caption
Columbus.
source
benedek/Getty Images

Total score: 62.16

Employment: 24

Economy: 14

Quality of life: 37

Health: 54


16. Boise, Idaho

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

Total score: 62.71

Employment: 21

Economy: 36

Quality of life: 4

Health: 89


15. San Diego, California

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

Total score: 62.75

Employment: 47

Economy: 78

Quality of life: 2

Health: 35


14. Plano, Texas

caption
Plano.
source
Shutterstock

Total score: 63.23

Employment: 82

Economy: 44

Quality of life: 10

Health: 20


13. Fort Worth, Texas

caption
Fort Worth.
source
Gereon Zwosta/EyeEm/Getty Images

Total score: 63.35

Employment: 70

Economy: 5

Quality of life: 32

Health: 20


12. Irvine, California

caption
Irvine.
source
LagunaticPhoto/Shutterstock

Total score: 63.66

Employment: 50

Economy: 40

Quality of life: 41

Health: 1


11. Madison, Wisconsin

caption
Madison.
source
Shutterstock

Total score: 64.50

Employment: 27

Economy: 6

Quality of life: 21

Health: 40


10. Jacksonville, Florida

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

Total score: 65.50

Employment: 23

Economy: 20

Quality of life: 36

Health: 13


9. St. Petersburg, Florida

caption
St. Petersburg.
source
Tar_Heel_Rob/Getty Images

Total score: 65.67

Employment: 51

Economy: 18

Quality of life: 23

Health: 13


8. Gilbert, Arizona

caption
Gilbert.
source
Tim Roberts Photography/Shutterstock

Total score: 67.73

Employment: 40

Economy: 3

Quality of life: 15

Health: 64


7. Virginia Beach, Virginia

caption
Virginia Beach.
source
Visit Virginia Beach/Facebook

Total score: 68.13

Employment: 62

Economy: 2

Quality of life: 11

Health: 61


6. Colorado Springs, Colorado

caption
Colorado Springs.
source
RiverNorthPhotography/Getty Images

Total score: 70.06

Employment: 17

Economy: 24

Quality of life: 5

Health: 49


5. Scottsdale, Arizona

caption
Scottsdale.
source
Slim Aarons/Getty Images

Total score: 71.45

Employment: 12

Economy: 9

Quality of life: 3

Health: 64


4. Raleigh, North Carolina

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

Total score: 71.78

Employment: 5

Economy: 4

Quality of life: 14

Health: 70


3. Orlando, Florida

caption
Orlando.
source
Shutterstock

Total score: 71.94

Employment: 3

Economy: 16

Quality of life: 9

Health: 32


2. Austin, Texas

caption
Austin.
source
Shutterstock

Total score: 72.22

Employment: 11

Economy: 17

Quality of life: 7

Health: 20


1. Tampa, Florida

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

Total score: 72.44

Employment: 8

Economy: 12

Quality of life: 6

Health: 16