Best Places to Live in Washington State

By PropertyClub Team
Jan 4th 2023
Known for its abundant national parks, stunning mountain ranges, and beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean, Washington is one of the nation’s best places to call home. This list of the eight best places to live in Washington will help you choose the right area for your next big move.

hash-mark8 Best Places to Live in Washington State

  1. Sammamish
  2. Pullman
  3. Kenmore
  4. Maple Valley
  5. Mercer Island
  6. Olympia
  7. Bellingham
  8. Spokane

hash-mark1. Sammamish

The best place to live in Washington State is Sammamish. Located east of Seattle, this city is known for its well-educated resident base, welcoming atmosphere, and family-oriented community. Its proximity to Seattle and Bellevue makes it accessible to the area’s major employers, such as Microsoft. This keeps the city’s economy thriving and local unemployment rates below state and national averages. Crime rates in this area are some of the lowest in Washington, making Sammamish a great place for those concerned about family safety. Overall, Sammamish is the premier choice for families who want to live close to Seattle.

hash-mark2. Pullman

Pullman is the second best place to live in Washington. This thriving city is located in the state’s southeastern corner and is home to roughly 33,000 people, making it the largest metropolitan area in Whitman County. Home to Washington State University, Pullman attracts a younger resident base and is affordable for students and young professionals. In addition to the area’s gorgeous landscape of rolling hills and sweeping wheatfields, the inner city provides a wealth of urban amenities. These include local coffee shops, restaurants, breweries, gardens, historic sites, and the Downtown Riverwalk. With cost-effective home prices and rental rates, Pullman is also an excellent choice for affordable living. 

hash-mark3. Kenmore

Kenmore is an urban community just north of Seattle and is one of Washington’s best areas for family-friendly living. Situated along the iridescent Lake Washington, this beautiful suburb is full of tree-lined streets, waterfront views, and outdoor adventure. In addition to its impressive natural amenities, Kenmore also provides its residents with a wealth of business opportunities and education access. The city is home to Bastyr University, the leading natural medicine university and research institution in the nation. With a crime rate below half the state average, Kenmore is another fantastic choice for those interested in living within minutes from Seattle.

hash-mark4. Maple Valley

Situated between Seattle and Tacoma, Maple Valley is another one of Washington’s best areas. Often praised for its family-oriented atmosphere and safe streets, Maple Valley has appeared on several “best places to live” lists over the years. Most residents here are college educated and prefer the city for its vast natural beauty, local parks, and closely-knit community. Additionally, Maple Valley grew roughly 63% between 2000-2010, making it an excellent option for those who prefer a progressive area.  

hash-mark5. Mercer Island

Mercer Island is located right in the middle of Lake Washington and is one of the top suburbs in the entire country. The city offers various urban amenities, including shops, restaurants, bookstores, wine bars, art galleries, local parks, farmer’s markets, and more. Additionally, this city is home to four public beaches and has available ferry access to Seattle. With low crime rates keeping the neighborhood safe, Mercer Island is ideal for young couples and future families. 

hash-mark6. Olympia

As Washington’s state capital, Olympia is the best place for those interested in local government and politics. This city is home to roughly 56,000 people and is known for being a bustling cultural epicenter. In addition to multiple urban amenities like shops, restaurants, bars, art venues, and farmers’ markets, Olympia is home to several natural attractions, such as wildlife refuges, waterfront parks, and nature preserves. And, for coffee lovers, Olympia has some of the best caffeine fixes in the state. Ultimately, Olympia is a great place to get to know the beating heart of Washington.

hash-mark7. Bellingham

Bellingham is one of Washington’s best areas for outdoor adventure. This city is highly acclaimed for its variety of hiking trails, interurban pathways, lakes, and rivers, all of which have helped to land it on many “Best Of” lists. Additionally, local natural attractions like Whatcom Falls Park, Larrabee State Park, and the ever-scenic Chuckanut Drive make this area an outdoorsman’s paradise. The city itself is fairly large and houses roughly 92,000 people. With a thriving artistic community and plenty of popular urban eating and drinking scenes, Bellingham is sure to have something for everyone. 

hash-mark8. Spokane

Spokane is another one of the best cities to live in Washington state. This popular area is located close to the Idaho border and possesses an active community with a strong artistic presence. The city’s surrounding landscape is abundant in both natural and urban attractions, such as the Columbia River and Riverfront Park. Downtown, locals can enjoy local shopping and eateries while heading to events at the Avista Stadium and the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture. Spokane also has some of the best rental rates and home prices in the state, keeping it an affordable part of the Washington landscape. 

hash-markBest Places to Live in Washington State Comparison

City Name


Median Home Price

Average Rent

(1 Bedroom)

Crime Rate



1.7 Million













Maple Valley





Mercer Island


2.4 Million