Shelby County named among ‘Best Counties to Live in’

Published 10:44 am Monday, December 12, 2016

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

A national consumer advocacy website has named Shelby County as one of the top counties in which to live in Alabama, touting the county’s safety, cost of living and education. recently released its list of the “2016 Best Counties to Live in Alabama,” and named Shelby County as the No. 2 entry on the list.

While formulating the rankings, the website weighted cost of living as the top factor, followed by education, public schools and real estate, among several other areas.

“The 2016 Best Counties to Live ranking provides a comprehensive assessment of the overall livability of an area at the county level” read the list. “This grade takes into account several key factors of a location, including the quality of local schools, crime rates, housing trends, employment statistics, and access to amenities in an attempt to measure the overall quality of an area.”

Madison County came in at No. 1 on the list, besting Shelby County in cost of living, diversity, nightlife and shortest commute.

Shelby County earned the highest possible ranking of “A+” in the education category, earned a grade of “A” in the public schools category and scored an “A-” in the health and fitness category.

Shelby County had several “B+” grades in the real estate, nightlife, family amenities, jobs and outdoor activities categories. The county earned a grade of “B” in the crime and safety category and grades of “B-” in the weather, diversity and cost of living categories.

The county’s lowest grade came in the shortest commute category, where only 31 percent of residents reported a daily commute of less than 20 minutes. Nearly 8 percent of the county’s population reports a more than hour-long commute each day.

Rounding out the top-10 list was Lee County at No. 3, Coffee County at No. 4, Montgomery County at No. 5, Lauderdale County at No. 6, Dale County at No. 7, Jefferson County at No. 8, Houston County at No. 9 and Baldwin County at No. 10.

To view the full list visit