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WalletHub ranks Indiana among Top 25 best states to live

UnPHILtered: WalletHub ranks Indiana among Top 25 best states to live

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The state of Indiana falls in the middle on a new ranking for the best states in which to live by personal finance website, WalletHub. The results were released Monday citing that 8.6% of Americans relocated the previous year.

The organization used 51 metrics related to livability in five categories of affordability, economy, education and health, quality of life and safety. The livability indicators range from housing costs to violent crime rates, commute times and quality of hospitals.

A full explanation of WalletHub’s calculations can be found in a summary by a financial writer for the company.

Overall, Indiana ranked as the 22nd best state in which to live. The state scored highest in the affordability category which factored data such as cost of living and property taxes. WalletHub found Indiana to be the third most affordable state with only Alabama and West Virginia ranking higher on the list in first and second, respectively.

The Hoosier State received its most negative marks within the comparison for its economy. For that category, the website took into consideration each state’s unemployment rate, debt compared to earnings among the population, food insecurity and entrepreneurial activity. Indiana ranked 42nd.

WalletHub included what it called expert commentary in a summary of its comparison. The organization quoted various industry experts on advice for people researching places to live as well as for state leadership in opportunities to make their communities more attractive.

Cleveland State University Professor Emeritus Alan Weistein said he considers a state’s economy to be the leading indicator in evaluating the best states for living. Weistein pointed to what he considered priorities for what policymakers can do to attract and retain new residents.

“Adopt and maintain policies that: (1) attract new and keep existing employers that offer good-paying jobs with benefits; (2) adequately fund public education from pre-school through post-graduate; (3) adequately maintain and build as needed transportation infrastructure, including public transit where appropriate; and (4) fund governmental services as adequately as possible while holding tax increases as low as possible,” Weinstein said.

Only two Midwestern states were ranked in the Top 10; Wisconsin at ninth and Minnesota tenth. New Mexico ranked lowest as the worst state in which to live, according to WalletHub’s overall rating.