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    Ohio’s Best Counties to Live In

    By Samuel Stebbins,


    This post includes affiliate links. If you purchase anything through these affiliated links, may earn a commission. Every year in the United States, tens of millions of Americans move to a new home. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the bulk of these moves are motivated by personal circumstances, often relating to housing, family, or employment. But when it comes to deciding on a place to live, it can also be helpful to weigh other, less subjective factors.

    As a means of gauging and comparing degrees of development between countries -- beyond standard measures like gross domestic product and economic growth -- the United Nations created the Human Development Index . By accounting for factors related to health and well-being, educational attainment, and standards of living, the HDI offers an assessment of overall quality of life at the individual level within a given geography.

    When applied to communities within the United States, the core principles of the HDI reveal that some parts of the country are far better places to live than others.

    Using an index inspired by the HDI, 24/7 Wall St. identified the best counties in Ohio to live in. Counties are ranked on a combination of three measures - average life expectancy at birth, the share of adults with a bachelor's degree or higher, and the poverty rate. Of the 88 counties in Ohio, we ranked the 30 with the highest HDI score.

    Across all of Ohio, average life expectancy at birth is 76.5 years. Additionally, 13.3% of the population live below the poverty line and 30.4% of adults have a bachelor's degree or higher. Of the 30 counties on this list, 10 compare favorably to the state as a whole in each of these metrics.

    Among these 30 Ohio counties, average life expectancy at birth ranges from 76.2 years to 81.7 years. Meanwhile, poverty rates vary between 4.5% and 16.5%, and bachelor's degree attainment rates range from about 18% to over 50%.

    Data used to calculate rankings are from the U.S. Census Bureau's 2022 American Community Survey and County Health Rankings & Roadmaps , a joint program of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. All ACS data are five-year averages.

    Why It Matters

    Many of the most commonly cited economic indicators -- including unemployment, GDP, and industrial output -- are useful gauges of prosperity and productive capacity in a given area. But when it comes to measuring overall quality of life, any single metric inevitably falls short. To address these shortcomings, the HDI combines three key social and economic measures into a single index score, allowing for objective comparisons between communities across the United States.

    30. Madison County

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