A mother and her son sled down a hill full of snow in Waukee Iowa
Courtesy of the City of Waukee

No. 11

Waukee, Iowa

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County: Dallas
Nearest big city: Des Moines

It’s all about growth in Waukee, a small suburb just west of Des Moines. The city has gained over 10,000 residents in the last 10 years (a 74% uptick, and quite the feat for a town of just 24,000). The area’s grown so much, Waukee’s high school had to be split in two. Another elementary school, two middle schools and a new athletic facility are also in the works.

Make no mistake: This quiet community isn’t full up just yet. Housing is booming in Waukee, and nearly 600 single-family housing permits were issued just last year — a record for the city. That doesn’t even include the hundreds of permits issued for townhomes (over 250) and multi-family developments, either.

The best part? Despite the demand, homes are still quite affordable in Waukee. The city’s median home price clocked in at $272,854 during the first quarter of the year — a mere 5% jump over 2020. Compared to national home prices, which jumped 12.6% in the first quarter, that’s certainly a number worth boasting about. — Aly J. Yale

Waukee, Iowa

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  • Median Household Income


  • Median Home Price


  • Unemployment Rate


Sources: Population and median household income provided by Synergos Technologies Inc.; unemployment rate (by county) provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics; and median home price provided by ATTOM Data Solutions.

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