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Best Places To Live In Illinois 2018

Nearby Areas With A High Livability Score84
  • Waterloo, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 10,197
  • In all my 34 years of living in Waterloo, Illinois I can honestly say I have never had a bad day based on where I live. Of course I've had bad days for other reasons, but honestly living here has helped
82
  • Clarendon Hills, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 8,641
81
  • Algonquin, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 30,413
  • Algonquin, IL is situated as one of the farthest of the northwest suburbs of Chicago. It boasts an excellent public school system, and the crime is low especially compared to other surrounding suburbs.
81
  • Columbia, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 10,193
  • I have lived in Columbia, Illinois for all of my life except for my four years I was away at college. I can't picture myself living anywhere else, no do I want to! The people that call Columbia home are
81
  • Lake in the Hills, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 28,908
  • Lake in the Hill is one of those small towns outside of a major city that’s a mix of the strange and developing. Living in there, you quickly gather that there’s something weird about the people. For
81
  • Grandwood Park, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 5,471
80
  • Schaumburg, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 74,366
  • schaumburg is a very nice place.but it is also very expensive.if you have the money it is great .there is lots to do there. lots of resteraunts and overall a very nice place to live. The prices on the
80
  • South Elgin, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 22,274
  • South Elgin is located just south of Elgin, Illinois and is a far west suburb of Chicago. The city is known for being excellent for families by having a great public school system and having well-policed
79
  • Warrenville, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 13,415
  • Living in Warrenville, Illinois is like living nowhere else! St. James Farm Forest and Preserve is located here and it's my most favorite place in the world to visit! Over 612 acres of natural forest
79
  • Crystal Lake, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 40,475
  • I currently live in an area called Crystal Lake that is located in Illinois. There is so much to love about this area including the excellent education as well the the local amenities in this area. I was
79
  • O'Fallon, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 29,078
  • There’s a lot to love about the suburb of O’Fallon, the people are wonderful, the weather throughout the years is manageable and St. Luis is a hope and skip away. When I first moved to O’Fallon, it was
79
  • Orland Hills, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 7,241
79
  • Buffalo Grove, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 41,554
  • I lived in Buffalo Grove, Illinois for about 8 years in my mid-twenties. I lived on the north side which is more commercial than the southern side which is more residential and family friendly. There
79
  • Hoffman Estates, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 51,727
  • I received a ticket for driving on a suspended license in Hoffman Estates. I was arrested and my car was towed.I proved without a doubt that the State of Illinois should have never issued the suspended
78
  • Geneva, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 21,732
  • Geneva, Illinois is a suburb of Chicago, but you honestly would never know it's anywhere near such a big city. It's a nice place that has a semi-country feel to it. The public transit system is
78
  • St. Charles, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 32,745
  • It was a joy living in St Charles Illinois, the city with 'Pride of the Fox' as a motto. Living in the west suburbs offered a multitude of amenities and nightlife activities. The city of over 33,000 in
78
  • Monee, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 5,098
78
  • La Grange Park, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 13,596
  • It's was fair living here, it's an industrial and cultural city. I particularly love the easy access to the various rail and bus services; offered. What I also liked about the area was their economic
77
  • Western Springs, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 13,133
  • I have lived in this city all my life. There is no other place I can call home. I have undergone the full public education system and even changed elementary schools. It’s a city with very impressive
77
  • Roscoe, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 10,666
  • Living in Roscoe, Illinois is truly a unique experience! This is a smaller town, but we are very close to Rockford, Chicago is only about a 45 minute drive and Milwaukee is about an hour away in a
77
  • Mundelein, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 31,550
  • The city of Mundelein, Illinois is a suburb located approximately 35 miles north of Chicago with a population of 31,064. This quaint little village has been around since the mid 1600's, initially the
77
  • Glen Carbon, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 12,782
  • I adore living here, I moved here because I so love their parks. It is a large suburban city with an atmosphere that offers its residents affordable living. With that being said, the job market here is
77
  • Edwardsville, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 25,044
  • Living in Edwardsville, IL is a beautiful place. We have many parks. We have an industrial town that was merged with us, making our city even larger than it originally was. Edwardsville is named after
77
  • Cary, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 17,946
  • Cary and the surrounding areas have great activities that are ideal for nature lovers and history buffs. There are also popular evening hangouts where you can grab a meal with friends. Tracks is one of
77
  • Lisle, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 22,989
  • Lisle is a great place for a family. I never hear about crime and it has a family feel to it. It is close to 2 different malls (yorktown and fox valley) and because it is so close to Naperville there is
77
  • Hinsdale, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 17,438
  • Hinsdale, Illinois is a suburb of Chicago located to the west/southwest of the city. It is a diverse and welcoming community and definitely geared more towards the upper middle-class with the higher
77
  • West Dundee, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 7,369
77
  • Channahon, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 12,329
  • There's more to Illinois than just Chicago, and there's definitely more to Channahon than you might first think. Located within driving distance of the Windy City, it's a small village with a lot of
76
  • Swansea, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 13,722
  • Living in Swansea has been an interesting experience. I moved from city to city as a kid, and wanted to slow things down a little, so moved to Swansea. The village is tiny, but peaceful. There isn't a
76
  • Brookfield, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 18,966
  • The primary ecosystem of Brookfield, Illinois is oak savanna. The town is only 13 miles west of downtown Chicago. The total land area is 3.07 square miles. If you like outdoor festivals, then check out
76
  • Arlington Heights, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 75,721
  • Im a liberal and this place is great. im also a transgender and idetify as a vending machine and people accept me around here. i acted like a vending machine and someone put a $1 inside of me since i was
76
  • Grayslake, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 21,053
  • Grayslake, Illinois is located near the border with Wisconsin but is still considered a far north suburb of Chicago. It is home to many excellent and safe neighborhoods and to College of Lake County. The
76
  • Libertyville, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 20,435
  • Libertyville, Illinois is a far north suburb of Chicago. The housing market in Libertyville is great, being that house prices are low and property taxes remain more reasonable than what you'd find living
76
  • Itasca, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 8,502
  • Although I might have went to some bad dining places, Itasca isn't so bad. The hotel I stayed at with my family was great, especially the
76
  • Vernon Hills, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 25,910
  • Vernon Hills has lots of great things to do whether you're welcoming friends or family into the city or want to find more local activities that your loved ones will enjoy. Locations like Beerhead Bar
76
  • Rolling Meadows, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 23,377
  • Living in Rolling Hills, IL has been a pretty good experience. There is hardly any crime here, but I don't know if I intend on staying in this area once my kids are a little bit older because the schools
76
  • Wheaton, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 53,568
  • I have lived in Wheaton, Illinois for a few years now. It has quickly become my favorite place to live. I love its deep-rooted sense of community. This is a very family friendly town. Living here is like
76
  • Lakemoor, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 6,313
76
  • Willowbrook, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 8,603
76
  • Manhattan, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 7,405
75
  • Morton, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 16,343
  • Morton. IL is one of those places you pray you will find when you are ready to pull up stakes and relocate. I know that was the case with me 11 years ago when I moved here. I have been living in Morton
75
  • Northfield, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 5,374
75
  • Woodridge, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 33,331
  • I really like living in Woodridge. It's an enjoyable city, not too far from Chicago, and has everything I need. Woodridge is a little more expensive than other towns in the area but it's reasonable in my
75
  • Lake Bluff, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 5,758
75
  • Naperville, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 145,789
  • On June 7 traveling with my daughter and her son I drove her car to the Naperville commuter station. I parked in the public lot north of the station in stall #829. I then went to the station to pay on
75
  • Palatine, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 69,098
  • Like with every area theres a ghetto but 90% of Palatine is safe. The downtown has been newly redone with a fair amount of bars/shopping and places to eat all within walking distance. Though
75
  • Huntley, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 25,831
  • Living in Huntley, it is interesting to watch how the tiny little city has grown and expanded over the years. When I was a boy, we had a single elementary school and a single high school/ Now, the best
75
  • Mascoutah, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 7,917
75
  • Wilmette, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 27,367
  • There’s no many things biblical about Wilmette, but it fits. Everyone who lives here has a sense of compassion for their neighbor. Throughout the day, you’ll find many of them out and about, which I
75
  • Oswego, IL
  • (City)
  • Population: 33,245
  • Living in Oswego, Illinois, has a few upsides and a few downsides. One of the upsides, which I like a lot about the city, is that the crime rate is exceedingly low and the jobs pay quite well. I had no

Illinois: The Cultural Epicenter

There are plenty of amazing places to live in Illinois, and maybe one of these top spots will strike your fancy. Whether you're attracted to the cultural epicenter of the Midwest that is Chicago, a small Midwestern town lifestyle, the amazing farmer's markets or the state's industry, there are plenty of amazing best places to live in Illinois.

Located in America's heartland, the Midwest, Illinois is a mostly landlocked state, bordered by Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, Indiana and Kentucky. The state does border Lake Michigan on the northeast corner and the Mighty Mississippi runs down the western border of the state, creating major shipping routes. Chicago is the most populated city in Illinois and the third most populous city in the United States. The state's capital is Springfield, which is a mecca for Lincoln buffs.

Illinois is primarily a flat, agricultural state, and driving across it you will see lots of farm fields and forests. Southern Illinois offers more dynamic landscapes, with rolling hills, swamplands and the sprawling Shawnee National Forest. While Illinois has no natural lakes, it does have many rivers for water sports, and many old river towns along the Mississippi in particular have a lot of charm. Illinois' climate varies throughout the year and even wildly day-to-day, though in general the state has hot, humid summers and cold winters.

Illinois is the very image of the Midwest, with hardworking, "Midwestern Nice" people calling the state home. While largely agricultural (roughly eighty percent of the state's land) and speckled with small farm towns, there are centers of busting urban culture in both the Chicagoland area as well as Champaign-Urbana, where the main University of Illinois campus is located, Peoria and Springfield. Parts of southwestern Illinois along the Mississippi River are also considered part of the St. Louis metropolitan area. The countryside, where much of the nation's corn, soybeans and pumpkins are grown, has a lot of Midwestern charm. The cost of living in Illinois is slightly higher than the national average but it is far from the priciest state, especially in cities and towns outside the Chicagoland area. To compensate for this, Illinois also has a higher average income than most other states.

The state has plenty of amenities to offer its residents and nearly countless things to do, whether you want to spend a day at the Brookfield Zoo, see a Cubs or Bears game, visit one of the many museums across the state, go to a pumpkin patch or orchard, have a night out at the theater or go fishing or camping. Illinois boasts several beautiful parks, including Starved Rock State Park and its canyons, waterfalls and rock formations that can be found nowhere else in the Midwest and Shawnee National Forest with its own stunning rock formations. The state is also rich in history and historical sites, particularly surrounding President Abraham Lincoln, who gave the state its slogan: "Land of Lincoln."

With loads of great places to live, it might be difficult to decide where in Illinois you would like to end up. We've helped you out by compiling a list of our top best places to live in Illinois. You can further customize your list by specifying your search radius, population size, home/rent budget and what metrics (amenities, crime, cost of living, education, employment, housing, weather) are most important to you.