Study Finds Massachusetts 2nd Best State to Live In

 by TWIW StaffJune 16, 2021

A new study found that Massachusetts ranks second in its list of Top States to Live In.

The study, conducted by, uses 52 metrics to compile an overall score for each state from one to 100. Massachusetts, with the second highest, scored a 62.6.

The researchers sorted each metric into five key dimensions which each equally contributed to the overall score. In those dimensions, Massachusetts ranked:

  • 5th - Health and Education
  • 5th - Safety
  • 7th in Quality of Life
  • 32nd - Economy
  • 49th - Affordability

Metrics within these dimensions are weighted differently in the study. Scroll down to see the ranking of Massachusetts in all 52 of those individual metrics.

Researchers found most states in and around New England ranked highly:

State Rank Score
New Jersey 1 63.01
Massachusetts 2 62.60
New York 3 61.63
New Hampshire 8 59.59
Pennsylvania 10 59.21
Vermont 11 58.59
Maine 19 56.32
Connecticut 22 55.05
Rhode Island 36 50.18

Here are the states that fell between New York (3) and New Hampshire (8) as well as some other states that may be of interest.

State Rank Score
Idaho 4 61.16
Minnesota 5 60.97
Wisconsin 6 60.94
Utah 7 59.84
Florida 14 57.87
California 27 52.32
North Carolina 28 55.05

The five worst ranked states in the study are:

State Rank Score
South Carolina 46 44.52
Mississippi 47 42.40
Louisiana 48 41.89
Alaska 49 40.17
New Mexico 50 38.96

View the rankings below  for Massachusetts in each individual metric used in the study or see the full study results and the methodology used at

Individual Metric Massachusetts
State Rankng
Quality of Public School System 1
Share of Insured Population 1
Accessibility of Beaches 1
Property-Crime Rate 1
Traffic-related Fatalities per Capita 1
Median Debt per Median Earnings 2
Poor or Fair Health 2
Share of Obese Adults 2
Overall Rank 2
Bankruptcy Rate 3
Access to Public Transportation 3
Median Annual Household Income 4
Premature-Death Rate 4
Miles of Trails for Bicycling &
Walking per Total State Land Area
“Bicycle Friendly State”
Ranking (proxy for Bike Score)
Income Growth 5
Average Hours Worked per Week 5
Museums per Capita 5
Food Insecurity 6
Life Expectancy 6
Fitness Centers per Capita 6
Share of Population Living in Poverty 8
Performing Arts Centers per Capita 8
Restaurants per Capita 9
Air Quality 10
States that are Recovering the
Quickest from COVID-19
High School Graduation Rate 15
Share of Population Aged 25 & Older
with a High School Diploma or Higher
Share of Live Births with Low Birthweight 19
Population Growth 22
Bars per Capita 24
Violent-Crime Rate 24
General Tax-Friendliness 25
Foreclosure Rate 28
Share of Physically
Inactive Adults
Job Opportunities 29
Movie Theaters per Capita 29
Total Law-Enforcement
Employees per Capita
Median Annual Property Taxes 33
Unemployment Rate 35
Economic Confidence Index 38
Building-Permit Growth 38
Entrepreneurial Activity 40
Quality of Roads 40
Traffic Congestion 40
Underemployment Rate 41
Housing Affordability 42
Quality of Public Hospital System 42
Homeownership Rate 43
Cost of Living 47
Average Commute Time (in Minutes) 47
Weather 47
Wealth Gap 48
Overall Score 62.6
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