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The Best Cities in Washington to Raise Your Kids

Looking for good schools, low crime and lots of other kids to play with?

Vicky McDonald

Published on: April 03, 2019


It costs more than $233K to raise a child through age 17, which is daunting stuff if you’re just starting out on your parenting journey. Of course, this cost will vary depending on where you live. In certain cities, you might earn more, but you’ll also probably end up spending a lot more for childcare. But it’s not just about money: You want your family to live somewhere with good schools, low crime and lots of other kids to play with. 

To find the best cities to raise a family on the West Coast, SmartAsset compared 150 cities against 10 different factors. They looked at housing costs as a percent of income, the annual cost of childcare, percentage of residents under the age of 19, average math proficiency, average reading proficiency, high school graduation rate, average spending per pupil, poverty rate, unemployment rate and crime rate. 

The Bay Area, it turns out, is the best place to raise a family, with nine of the top 10 cities in California. Washington didn’t fare so well, with just two cities featured in the top 25. Marysville came in at 11 and Bellevue came in at 19. 

So, what makes these two cities stand out? According to the data, 28 percent of residents in Marysville are under the age of the 19 and day care is somewhat affordable as compared to other cities, at about $14K per annum. Bellevue’s low unemployment rate at 6.5 percent and great schools contributed to its high score. 

While these cold, hard stats are interesting, we think there are plenty of other great cities in Washington with awesome museums, playgrounds, hiking trails and more, that make them the perfect place to raise your kids. 

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