The 25 Best Cities for Jobs in 2020

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Is 2020 a time for clear vision on your career? Time for a new path? Sometimes breaking out of old patterns and old jobs can be a game-changer. But what to do and where to go?

WalletHub’s research might have laid out a map for you. The personal finance website recently ranked 182 cities — a list that included the 150 most populated cities — to determine which are best for jobs.

The analysis is based on 31 metrics, such as job opportunities, employment growth and average starting salary.

Check out the top 25 cities in this list and see if any of them lure you to a possible new life.

25. Salt Lake City

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Total score: 57.22 out of 100 points

Utah’s capital city and hub of Mormon culture had an unemployment rate of 1.9% as of November 2019 — the lowest rate among the 51 metro areas that had a population of 1 million or more as of the 2010 Census, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. That compared with a national unemployment rate of 3.3% in November.

24. Reno, Nevada

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Total score: 57.36 out of 100 points

The “Biggest Little City in the World” ranked No. 1 for employment growth in WalletHub’s analysis.

That metric was based on a city’s rate of annual job growth after accounting for growth in the city’s working-age population.

23. Columbia, Maryland

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Total score: 57.44 out of 100 points

This community in the Baltimore metro area was tied for No. 1 — along with five other cities — for having the highest median annual income in the WalletHub study.

It also ranked No. 6 in the category of “socio-economics,” which was based on metrics ranging from income and housing affordability to safety and family-friendliness.

22. Huntington Beach, California

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Total score: 57.50 out of 100 points

This Orange County beach city’s population is growing. That has helped spark a lawsuit from the State of California, which alleges the city failed to fulfill its pledge to build more low-income housing.

It’s another battle the state is fighting to deal with an ongoing housing shortage.

21. Seattle

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Total score: 57.62 out of 100 points

The Emerald City came in No. 3 in a Money Talks News report on “The Top 20 U.S. Cities for Launching a Startup Business.”

More millennials moved to Seattle in the last five years than to any other of the 49 other cities in the analysis, according to the report.

20. Gilbert, Arizona

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Total score: 57.93 out of 100 points

This city in the Phoenix metro area was tied for No. 1 for having the highest median annual income in WalletHub’s report.

Gilbert also ranked 16th in the category of job market, which took into account more than 20 metrics including employment outlook, job security and industry variety.

19. Nashua, New Hampshire

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Total score: 58.32 out of 100 points

Nashua’s unemployment rate was 2.5% in November 2019.

That’s well below the national rate of 3.3% at the same time.

18. Orlando, Florida

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Total score: 58.35 out of 100 points

The home of Walt Disney World ranked No. 1 in Money Talks News’ report on the “The 10 Best Cities for Starting a Small Business.

Orlando gets high marks for its startups per capita, growth in the number of small businesses, job growth and the prevalence of investors.

17. Cedar Rapids, Iowa

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Total score: 58.38 out of 100 points

Money Talks News ranked this eastern Iowa city No. 6 in a list of “10 Cities With the Most High-Paying Jobs for Workers Without Degrees.”

The analysis found that 30.3% of its jobs were “opportunity jobs,” which pay at or above the local equivalent of the national median wage.

16. Charleston, South Carolina

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Total score: 58.42 out of 100 points

WalletHub ranked this port city No. 1 the metric of “Most Job Opportunities.” That rank was calculated using the number of job openings per labor force population, minus the unemployment rate.

That put Charleston ahead of other high-employment cities, including Orlando, Columbia, Salt Lake City and Cincinnati, for job opportunities.

15. San Jose, California

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Total score: 58.44 out of 100 points

Money Talks News reports that this Silicon Valley city was ranked No. 5 among the “15 Best Cities to Be a Real Estate Agent.” Median home values here are over $1 million, and the city ranks high for housing market health.

It doesn’t hurt that Google wants to build a huge campus there, also.

14. Pearl City, Hawaii

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Total score: 58.46 out of 100 points

WalletHub ranked Pearl City No. 7 in the category of job market, which took into account 21 metrics, including employment outlook, job opportunities and employment growth.

Pearl City ranked much lower (85th) in the category of socio-economics, which looked at such metrics as mass transit, housing affordability and family-friendliness.

13. Pittsburgh

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Total score: 58.54 out of 100 points

U.S. News & World Report placed Steel City 50th out of 125 metro areas in its annual “Best Places to Live” rankings, with tech corporations moving into the city and housing affordability.

U.S. News also ranked Pittsburgh 18th out of those 125 metro areas in its annual listing of “Best Places to Retire in the U.S.”

12. Plano, Texas

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Total score: 58.59 out of 100 points

This city 20 miles from downtown Dallas was tied for No. 1 for having the highest median annual income in WalletHub’s analysis.

Others rated tops in the tie at the top of the category: Columbia, Maryland; Scottsdale, Chandler and Gilbert, Arizona; and Overland Park, Kansas.

11. Overland Park, Kansas

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Total score: 58.65 out of 100 points

Kansas’ second-most populous city tied with five other cities for No. 1 in WalletHub’s category of highest median annual income.

Overland Park also ranked 15th in the category of socio-economics, which looked at metrics such as dating-friendliness, family-friendliness and commute times.

10. Boise, Idaho

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Total score: 59.29 out of 100 points

U.S. News & World Report called Boise the 17th-best place to live in its most recent ranking.

Outdoor recreation and locally sourced food and drink are two of the main lures to the Idaho city, according to the ratings.

9. Portland, Maine

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Total score: 60.04 out of 100 points

Maine’s most populous city earned a ranking of 23rd in U.S. News & World Report’s most recent “Best Places to Live” list.

It’s a city with a strong spirit of local entrepreneurship and a DIY attitude. Housing affordability has been an issue, however, says the U.S. News report.

8. Tempe, Arizona

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Total score: 60.07 out of 100 points

The home to Arizona State University ranked eighth overall and 11th in WalletHub’s category of socio-economics, which was calculated from metrics such as housing affordability, transit and safety.

7. Boston

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Total score: 60.44 out of 100 points

Beantown was among the “6 U.S. Cities Where It’s Possible to Retire by 40,” as reported by Money Talks News.

This report, based on an analysis by online real estate company Redfin, looked at workers in Boston and other metros who (among other factors):

  • Earn a household income in the 75th percentile.
  • Start work at age 22.
  • Live in a median-priced two-bedroom condo.

6. Chandler, Arizona

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Total score: 60.99 out of 100 points
WalletHub ranked Chandler and five other cities as tied for No. 1 for having the highest annual median income.

This Phoenix suburb also scored high marks in both the categories of job market and socio-economics.

5. Fremont, California

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Total score: 61.53 out of 100 points

This Bay Area city was No. 7 on Money Talks News’ list, “The 15 Best Cities to Be a Real Estate Agent.

That’s thanks to a median home value of $1.1 million and a monthly median rent of more than $3,300.

4. Austin, Texas

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Total score: 61.82 out of 100 points

The home of the South by Southwest music festival ranked first among the “The Top 20 U.S. Cities for Launching a Startup Business.” A lot of venture capital is flowing into Austin, which was named No. 1 for startup density.

U.S. News & World Report named Austin No. 1 in its annual “Best Places to Live” review.

3. San Francisco

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Total score: 63.17 out of 100 points

WalletHub placed the City by the Bay No. 3 for its job market — based on 21 metrics including the share of workers in poverty, employment outlook and job opportunities.

U.S. News & World Report rated Frisco No. 7 in its annual “Best Places to Live” rankings.

2. South Burlington, Vermont

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Total score: 65.47 out of 100 points

WalletHub ranked South Burlington No. 1 on the category of job market, based on 21 metrics, including job opportunities, employment outlook and unemployment rate.

1. Scottsdale, Arizona

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Total score: 65.50 out of 100 points

Scottsdale was the fourth Phoenix suburb in Money Talks News’ “25 Best Cities for Jobs in 2020.”

Scottsdale placed among the top five on both categories of job market and socio-economics in WalletHub’s analysis. Those categories included factors such as job opportunities, employment outlook and share of workers in poverty.

Are you considering moving for work? If so, what are the deciding factors for you? Post a comment below or at Money Talks News on Facebook.

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