Skip to main content
downtown Hickory in the evening

Hickory named most affordable metro and ranked among best places to live in America

Hickory, North Carolina ranks among the country’s best places to live and takes the lead as America’s most affordable metro, according to a new report released by U.S. News.

U.S. News analyzed the 150 most populous metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) to find the best places to live and released the new 2022-2023 rankings on Tuesday. To make the top of the list, a place had to have good value, be a desirable place to live, have a strong job market, and provide a high quality of life.

With a low cost of living, the Hickory MSA ranked No. 1 in Most Affordable Places to Live in the United States. This ranking is based on the median gross rent and annual housing costs for mortgage-paying homeowners of each metro area.

“Hickory offers a high quality of life and an affordable cost of living for residents. This makes our community a desirable place to live and we’re experiencing steady growth as more and more people realize its value and choose Hickory as their home,” said Hickory Mayor Hank Guess. 

In addition to ranking at the top of the list for affordability, Hickory moved up 21 spaces to become No. 31 in Best Places to Live in the United States. Hickory also moved up 2 spaces to rank No. 3 in Best Places to Live in North Carolina.

“The City’s investments in the bond program are driving more economic growth and development in the area, and that is also resulting in more housing opportunities,” added Guess. “Investing in job creating ventures like Trivium Corporate Center and quality of life amenities like the Hickory Trail is doing exactly what we intended, and we’re excited to see what the future holds for Hickory as we work together with our regional partners to continue crafting a stronger, more vibrant community.”

To review the full 2022-2023 U.S. News & World Report Best Places to Live rankings report, visit

Learn more about Hickory’s rankings at