Georgia back in bottom 10 of best states to raise a family

WalletHub’s annual analysis puts the Peach State at No. 41 this year

After climbing one spot in 2021, Georgia has returned to the bottom 10 in WalletHub’s annual analysis of the best and worst states to raise a family.

“Neighborhood safety, school quality, air and water quality, green space, economic opportunities for parents, access to quality food, and positive social connections are the building blocks for children’s futures,” said Heidi Stolz, Ph.D., professor, director of the parenting education lab, child and family studies at the College of Education, Health and Human Sciences at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. “Resource-rich communities can be found in all states, but states do have different cultures, and from those cultures, differing family policies have emerged.”

To determine the best states to raise a family, WalletHub compared all 50 across five key dimensions: family fun, health and safety, education and child care, affordability, and socio-economics.

The financial website then evaluated those dimensions using 51 relevant metrics. Each metric was graded on a 100-point scale, with a score of 100 representing the most favorable conditions for family life.

When the numbers were tallied, Georgia finished at No. 41, with a score of just 39.83.

In each dimension, the Peach State ranked:

  • Family fun: 25th
  • Health and safety: 46th
  • Education and child care: 39th
  • Affordability: 42nd
  • Socio-economics: 35th

In addition, among the key metrics, Georgia finished:

  • Child-care costs (adjusted for median family income): 16th
  • Infant mortality rate: 46th
  • Median annual family income (adjusted for cost of living): 21st
  • Violent crimes per capita: 29th
  • Percent of families in poverty: 41st
  • Housing affordability: 26th
  • Separation and divorce rate: 36th
  • Percentage of residents 12 and older who are fully vaccinated: 44th

Last year’s No. 11 ranking was Georgia’s highest in five years. According to WalletHub, we ranked:

  • 2021: 40 (11th worst)
  • 2020: 42 (ninth worst)
  • 2019: 41 (10th worst)
  • 2018: 42 (ninth worst)
  • 2017: 44 (seventh worst)

For those thinking about moving to a more family-friendly location, consider Massachusetts, New York, Vermont, Minnesota or Nebraska, which ranked No. 1-5, respectively.