La The Happiest State

According to this study, at least. Makes sense to me, based on their criteria. They asked people how happy they were and also considered objective factors like weather and housing prices. Here’s how one of the authors explains it:

“We were struck by the states that come at the bottom, because a lot of them are on the East Coast, highly prosperous and industrialized,” Oswald said. “That’s another way of saying they have a lot of congestion, high house prices, bad air quality.”

He added, “Many people think these states would be marvelous places to live in. The problem is that if too many individuals think that way, they move into those states, and the resulting congestion and house prices make it a non-fulfilling prophecy.”

Bingo. For us, at least. I’ve always thought about moving back up northeast, but have always decided against it because of the high costs. Down here, we live in a nice house in a nice neighborhood and can still afford to have only one of us work full time, and that’s as a teacher. Up there? Two full time all year round jobs wouldn’t come close to allowing us to enjoy the equivalent type of home and neighborhood. We’d be crammed into some dinky two bedroom two hours commute from our jobs. So while we’d be in an objectively nicer area, we sure wouldn’t be able to enjoy it.

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