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By Adam Auriemma
September 18, 2017
Photograph by Joyce Kim for Money; (inset) Photograph by Taylor Jewell for Money

Dear Readers:

There’s a piece of paper in my office that’s become special to me. It’s a faded printout of a blog post published in 2011, written by a woman who had just lost her mother and her baby daughter. She and her family needed to make a change, so they moved to Louisville, Colo.—the town named that year as Money’s best place to live. “We’re chasing our dreams,” she wrote.

I kept that story in mind as I worked on this issue. Where you choose to live is an important decision, one that influences your life in every way. So we had to make sure to consider as many factors as possible. This year, our methodology is as robust as ever. We gathered 170,000 data points about 2,400 places. And for the first time, we partnered with realtor.com, leveraging its rich data and understanding of every housing market in the country.

I’m proud that our final list, which you can find here, represents the best of America’s towns and cities: places that offer economic opportunity, a sense of community, and access to amenities that make life more enjoyable.

But ultimately, your best place to live is up to you. I hope the list inspires you to think about your own dreams, and what moves you can make today to help achieve them.

Thanks for reading, and please let me know what you think by writing to editor@moneymail.com.

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Advertiser Disclosure

The purpose of this disclosure is to explain how we make money without charging you for our content.

Our mission is to help people at any stage of life make smart financial decisions through research, reporting, reviews, recommendations, and tools.

Earning your trust is essential to our success, and we believe transparency is critical to creating that trust. To that end, you should know that many or all of the companies featured here are partners who advertise with us.

Our content is free because our partners pay us a referral fee if you click on links or call any of the phone numbers on our site. If you choose to interact with the content on our site, we will likely receive compensation. If you don't, we will not be compensated. Ultimately the choice is yours.

Opinions are our own and our editors and staff writers are instructed to maintain editorial integrity, but compensation along with in-depth research will determine where, how, and in what order they appear on the page.

To find out more about our editorial process and how we make money, click here.

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