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According to a new study by WalletHub, 11 percent of Americans moved during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic. But if you think NJ is a place people only want to leave, think again. According to its newly released 2022’s Best & Worst States to Raise a Family, NJ is a great place for families to put down roots.

When WalletHub compared 50 states across 51 key indicators of family-friendliness, The Garden State came in 10th! Of course, we’re not surprised that NJ ranked so high when it comes to being a family-friendly place to reside. With our beaches, farms and parks, there’s so much great stuff to do with kids here. Our schools, museums and indoor activities also make NJ a fantastic choice to call home no matter what ages your kids are.

Here are the top 10 best places to raise a family according to the WalletHub survey:

  1. Massachusetts
  2. New York
  3. Vermont
  4. Minnesota
  5. Nebraska
  6. New Hampshire
  7. Connecticut
  8. Washington
  9. North Dakota
  10. New Jersey

“In order to determine the best states to raise a family, WalletHub compared the 50 states across five key dimensions: 1) Family Fun, 2) Health & Safety, 3) Education & Child Care, 4) Affordability and 5) Socio-economics,” said the study authors.

Those dimensions were evaluated using 51 relevant metrics and each was graded on a 100-point scale, with 100 representing the most favorable conditions for family life.

Each state’s weighted average was considered across all metrics to calculate its overall score.

In the survey, NJ ranked 16th for percent of families with young children. We came in 8th for child-care costs (adjusted for median family income). NJ also came in 8th for the percentage of residents aged 12+ who are fully vaccinated.

So while some people are leaving NJ, there are clearly plenty of good reasons to stay (and play!) in the Garden State when you have kids.

Click here to see the full results of the survey.