Rhode Island may be small, but it is packed with charm and character. With a population of around a million people, this coastal state is known for its old-fashioned villages and beautiful sandy beaches. Throughout the state, you’ll find developed cities like Newport, famous for its sailing scene and stunning mansions. The bustling capital of Rhode Island is Providence, which may not be the ideal residential area but is definitely worth a visit for a fun and memorable day.
When determining the 10 most desirable areas to live in Rhode Island, we considered factors such as proximity to excellent public schools, affordable housing costs, and low crime rates. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at each of these areas, highlighting their unique features and why they made our list.
10. Fox Point
Located in Providence, Fox Point is a neighborhood that is gaining popularity among Generation X. With a median home value of $530,000 and an average rent of $1,525, it may not be the best area for young families due to the lack of high-quality public schools. However, Fox Point compensates with its vibrant nightlife and convenient transportation options, making it an ideal location for those who prefer a child-free lifestyle.
Portsmouth is a wonderful town for families and has also become a popular destination for retirees. With a diverse population of 17,000 people, the median household income in Portsmouth is $100,000. This suburban region offers stunning views and a small-town feel. Home values here are relatively low, although a three-bedroom family home can still cost upwards of $580,000. The average rent in Portsmouth is $1,550.
8. College Hill
With its proximity to the Rhode Island School of Design and Brown University, it’s no surprise that College Hill is a favorite among millennials. Although the crime statistics may be higher than desired, this neighborhood offers a median family income of $120,000, well above the city-wide average. While there may be fewer schools in the area, the available ones are excellent. The median home value in College Hill is $750,000, with an average rent of $1,295.
Wayland is a diverse neighborhood in Providence that exudes a village-like atmosphere. With a median household income of $72,000, Wayland is home to less than 5,000 residents. The public schools may not be on par with those in Barrington, but they still exceed the national average. The median home value in Wayland is $920,000, and the average rent for a one-bedroom home is $2,500. With pleasant weather year-round, there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy all that Wayland has to offer.
Located centrally in Providence, Blackstone is the most urban area to live in Rhode Island. Residents have access to several schools, many of which perform better than the national average. Commuters can easily reach Boston, New York, and Connecticut, providing ample job opportunities. The median household income in Blackstone is $115,000. However, public transportation may not be the most reliable, so owning a vehicle is essential. The typical home value in Blackstone is $390,000, with an average rent of $1,300 for a one-bedroom apartment.
Narragansett is a charming and rustic town known for its history and access to the best beaches in Rhode Island. With a population of 16,000, residents can enjoy strolling along the shoreline with their families on a sunny day. The town’s average income is $40,000 per year, although there are only a few homes available for sale. The median home price in Narragansett is $700,000, and the median rent is $1,450. The only downside of living here is the higher influx of tourists during the summer. However, the area is well-maintained and safe.
Jamestown offers residents an island lifestyle while still being connected to the mainland. Situated between Block Island and Buzzards Bay, the views surrounding Jamestown are breathtaking. With a population of 5,500, it is considered one of the safest areas to live in Rhode Island. The median household income in Jamestown is $57,000, and commuting options are plentiful thanks to its connection to the mainland via Highway 138. The home prices in Jamestown are quite high, with a median value of $865,000. The average rent for a two-bedroom home is $3,000, and large gardens, garages, and private driveways are the norm.
Kingston is a village located within Washington County, offering residents access to excellent schools. With a population of only 6,900, Kingston feels more prosperous than Barrington. The median home value in Kingston is $500,000, and the average household income is $95,000. Renting an apartment in Kingston is within the national average at $1,200. The community is known for its active evening scene and various opportunities to connect, from farmers markets to local events.
2. East Greenwich
As a suburb of Providence, East Greenwich is one of the most desirable areas to live in Rhode Island. With a population of 13,000 and a median household income of $150,000, East Greenwich provides an excellent quality of life. Renters will find the median rent to be less than $900 per month, making it an affordable option. While the median home value is $620,000, single-bedroom homes are available for sale at less than $350,000. The area boasts great schools, amenities, and low crime rates, making it one of the safest places in the state.
Taking the top spot is Barrington, a sought-after suburb in Providence. Known for its top-quality elementary and high schools, Barrington is a great place for families. With a median household income of $125,000, residents can enjoy a vibrant social scene and numerous employment opportunities. The median home value in Barrington is $590,000, and the average rent for a one-bedroom home is $1,850. While the cost of living may be slightly higher, the benefits far outweigh any financial considerations. The close-knit community and excellent educational opportunities make Barrington an ideal place to call home.
In conclusion, Rhode Island offers a wealth of diverse and desirable areas to live, each with its own unique charm and benefits. From the urban vibe of Blackstone to the rustic beauty of Jamestown, there is something for everyone in the Ocean State. Whether you’re a young professional, a family with children, or a retiree, Rhode Island has a place that suits your needs and lifestyle. Explore these 10 best places to live in Rhode Island and find your perfect home.