5. Sherwood, OR

Dave Lauridsen Sherwood, OR

Top 50 rank: 5

Population: 18,736

There are plenty of reasons to love this small town just outside Portland — quaint historic downtown, top-ranked schools, relatively affordable home prices — but residents gush most about its proximity to fun stuff.

Just west of Sherwood is Willamette Valley wine country. Keep going and in less than two hours you’re on the Oregon Coast. Or travel 65 miles east to Mount Hood for skiing or hiking. Then there’s Portland, home to highly acclaimed restaurants, microbreweries, museums, theater, and more.

It’s also an easy commute to the likes of Nike in Beaverton, Intel in Hillsboro, and a plethora of high-tech and medical jobs. Oregon was hit hard by the recession, but the region has made a strong comeback. Says Judy Adler, a local real estate agent: “The recovery has been incredible.” –Sarah Max

Sherwood, OR

Town stats
Median family income (per year) $93,716
Job growth % (2010-2012) 3.51%
Median home price (2012) $243,538
Reading test scores (% above/below average) 26.2%
Math test scores (% above/below average) 15.3%
Personal crime incidents (per 1,000) 0
Property crime incidents (per 1,000) 10


Median family income (per year) $93,716
Family purchasing power (annual, cost-of-living adjusted) $85,422
Sales tax 0.00%
State income tax rate (highest bracket) 9.90%I
State income tax rate (lowest bracket) 5.00%I
Auto insurance premiums (Average price quotes, for the state) $1,419
Job growth % (2010-2012) 3.51%


Median home price (2012) $243,538
Average property taxes (2012) $3,917


Colleges, universities and professional schools (within 30 miles) 28
Reading test scores (% above/below state average) 26.2%
Test scores math (% above/below average) 15.3%
% students attending public/private schools (located within town limits) 97.3/2.7

Quality of life

Air quality index* (% of days AQI ranked as good) 94.9%
Personal crime incidents (per 1,000) 0
Property crime incidents (per 1,000) 10
Median commute time (in minutes) 23.1
% population with commute 45 mins. or longer 16.4%
% population walk or bike to work 4.5%

Leisure and culture

Movie theaters (within 15 miles) 51
Restaurants (within 15 miles) 3,134
Bars (within 15 miles) 429
Public golf courses (within 30 miles) 105
Libraries (within 15 miles) 43
Museums (accredited by AAM; within 30 miles) 2
Ski resorts (within 100 miles) N.A.
Arts funding (Dollars per person of state funds spent on arts) 0.7


Annual rainfall (inches) 37.07
% clear days in the area 39%
High temp in July ° F 79.2°
Low temp in Jan ° F 33.8°

Meet the neighbors

Median age 34.3
Completed at least some college (% of residents) 74.6%
Married % 63.5%
Divorced % 7.7%
Racial diversity index (100 is national average; higher numbers indicate greater diversity) 53.7
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