Best counties to live in Mississippi

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(Courtesy: Jerrye & Roy Klotz, MD // Wikimedia Commons)

What makes a particular county the best? Oftentimes, it’s a good mix of opportunities for fun outdoor activities and cultural attractions. Throw in some historical sites, good schools, job opportunities, and affordable housing, and the county will most likely have happy residents.

Stacker compiled a list of the best counties to live in Mississippi using rankings from Niche. Niche ranks counties by a variety of factors including: public schools, educational attainment, cost of living, and housing.

Many counties on the list are experiencing growth due to their job opportunities, education, or home values. Others are adored for their historic or well-designed value, or devotion to cultural opportunities. Keep reading to see if your county made the list.

Courtesy of the Mississippi Department of Archives and History // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Lincoln County

– Population: 34,320
– Median home value: $99,500 (75% own)
– Median rent: $713 (25% rent)
– Median household income: $42,606
– Top public schools: Mississippi School of the Arts (A), West Lincoln Attendance Center (B), Bogue Chitto Attendance Center (B)
– Top private schools: Brookhaven Academy Educational Foundation (B+), Easthaven Christian Childcare & Kindergarten (unavailable), Faith Presbyterian Kindergarten (unavailable)
– Top places to live: Brookhaven (B)

Z28scrambler // Wikimedia Commons

#24. Franklin County

– Population: 7,733
– Median home value: $76,600 (77% own)
– Median rent: $507 (23% rent)
– Median household income: $40,219
– Top public schools: Franklin County Middle School (A), Franklin Upper Elementary School (B), Franklin Lower Elementary School (B)
– Top places to live: Meadville (B), Roxie (B), Bude (B)

Calvin Beale // Wikimedia Commons

#23. Simpson County

– Population: 26,888
– Median home value: $87,900 (80% own)
– Median rent: $660 (20% rent)
– Median household income: $43,850
– Top public schools: Simpson Central School (B), Mendenhall Elementary School (B), Magee Elementary School (B)
– Top private schools: Simpson County Academy (B)
– Top places to live: Magee (C+), D’Lo (B), Mendenhall (B)

CapCase // Wikimedia Commons

#22. Neshoba County

– Population: 29,332
– Median home value: $83,000 (72% own)
– Median rent: $666 (28% rent)
– Median household income: $37,987
– Top public schools: Tucker Elementary School (A), Neshoba Central Elementary School (B+), Neshoba Central Middle School (B+)
– Top private schools:
– Top places to live: Philadelphia (B), Pearl River (B), Bogue Chitto (C)

Brian Stansberry // Wikimedia Commons

#21. Monroe County

– Population: 35,673
– Median home value: $91,700 (74% own)
– Median rent: $618 (26% rent)
– Median household income: $42,354
– Top public schools: East Amory Elementary (A), Amory Middle School (A), Smithville Attendance Center (B)
– Top private schools: Amory Christian Academy (unavailable)
– Top places to live: Amory (B), Aberdeen (B), Hatley (B)

Skye Marthaler // Wikimedia Commons

#20. Alcorn County

– Population: 37,090
– Median home value: $102,700 (69% own)
– Median rent: $617 (31% rent)
– Median household income: $42,086
– Top public schools: Kossuth Elementary School (A), Kossuth Middle School (B+), Corinth Middle School (B)
– Top private schools: Wheeler Grove Learning Center (unavailable)
– Top places to live: Corinth (B), Farmington (B), Glen (B)

Cohee // Wikimedia Commons

#19. Union County

– Population: 28,507
– Median home value: $100,600 (73% own)
– Median rent: $696 (27% rent)
– Median household income: $45,754
– Top public schools: New Albany Elementary School (A), New Albany Middle School (A), East Union Attendance Center (A)
– Top private schools: Victory Christian Academy (A)
– Top places to live: New Albany (B+), Blue Springs (B+), Myrtle (B)

Michaelswikiusername // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Pontotoc County

– Population: 31,618
– Median home value: $106,500 (71% own)
– Median rent: $722 (29% rent)
– Median household income: $44,759
– Top public schools: D.T. Cox Elementary School (A), Pontotoc Junior High School (A), Pontotoc Middle School (B+)
– Top private schools:
– Top places to live: Pontotoc (A), Ecru (B), Thaxton (B)

Brewri92535 // Wikimedia Commons

#17. Newton County

– Population: 21,360
– Median home value: $85,600 (77% own)
– Median rent: $658 (23% rent)
– Median household income: $35,958
– Top public schools: Union Elementary School (A), Newton County Elementary School (A), Union Middle School (A)
– Top private schools: Newton County Academy (C)
– Top places to live: Newton (C+), Union (B+), Decatur (B)

NatalieMaynor // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Webster County

– Population: 9,768
– Median home value: $84,000 (76% own)
– Median rent: $528 (24% rent)
– Median household income: $45,730
– Top public schools: East Webster Elementary School (B+), Eupora Elementary School (B+), East Webster High School (B+)
– Top private schools:
– Top places to live: Mathiston (B+), Mantee (B), Eupora (B)

Michlaovic // Wikimedia

#15. Hinds County

– Population: 238,797
– Median home value: $118,600 (58% own)
– Median rent: $869 (42% rent)
– Median household income: $44,625
– Top public schools: Lovett Elementary (A+), Eastside Elementary School (A), Northside Elementary School (A)
– Top private schools: Jackson Academy (A+), Mt. Salus Christian School (A), Clinton Christian Academy (B+)
– Top places to live: Clinton (A), Raymond (B), Byram (B)

Matthew Nichols // Wikimedia Commons

#14. Grenada County

– Population: 21,088
– Median home value: $105,000 (64% own)
– Median rent: $682 (36% rent)
– Median household income: $40,122
– Top public schools: Grenada Middle School (A), Grenada Elementary School (A), Grenada High School (B)
– Top private schools: Kirk Academy (B)
– Top places to live: Grenada (B), Holcomb (B), Elliott (B)

Librarylady2726 // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Jones County

– Population: 68,352
– Median home value: $98,600 (73% own)
– Median rent: $690 (27% rent)
– Median household income: $41,775
– Top public schools: Glade Elementary (A), West Jones Elementary School (A), North Jones Elementary School (B+)
– Top private schools: Laurel Christian School (B+)
– Top places to live: Ellisville (B), Laurel (C+), Sharon (B)

Leigh T. Harrell // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Lowndes County

– Population: 59,150
– Median home value: $134,200 (64% own)
– Median rent: $805 (36% rent)
– Median household income: $50,441
– Top public schools: The Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science (A+), Caledonia Middle School (A), Caledonia Elementary School (A)
– Top private schools: Heritage Academy (B+), Columbus Christian Academy (B), Victory Christian Academy (C)
– Top places to live: New Hope (A), Columbus (C+), Caledonia (B+)

Quentin Melson // Wikimedia Commons

#11. Jackson County

– Population: 142,376
– Median home value: $135,900 (70% own)
– Median rent: $879 (30% rent)
– Median household income: $51,657
– Top public schools: Ocean Springs Middle School (A), Oak Park Elementary School (A), Ocean Springs High School (A)
– Top private schools: Resurrection Catholic School – High School Campus (B+), Resurrection Catholic School – Elementary Campus (unavailable), St. Alphonsus School (unavailable)
– Top places to live: Ocean Springs (A), Gulf Hills (A), Gulf Park Estates (A)

Mthunter58 // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Oktibbeha County

– Population: 49,512
– Median home value: $162,900 (52% own)
– Median rent: $788 (48% rent)
– Median household income: $40,453
– Top public schools: West Elementary School (B+), Armstrong Middle School (B), Starkville High School (B)
– Top private schools: Starkville Christian School (B)
– Top places to live: Starkville (B+), Sturgis (A), Maben (C)

Dudemanfellabra // Wikimedia Commons

#9. Lauderdale County

– Population: 76,279
– Median home value: $96,300 (64% own)
– Median rent: $752 (36% rent)
– Median household income: $42,534
– Top public schools: Clarkdale Attendance Center (A), West Lauderdale Elementary School (A), Southeast Lauderdale Elementary School (A)
– Top private schools: Lamar School (A), Russell Christian Academy (B+), St. Patrick Elementary School (unavailable)
– Top places to live: Marion (B), Nellieburg (B), Meridian (C+)

Woodlot // Wikimedia Commons

#8. Harrison County

– Population: 204,502
– Median home value: $150,500 (57% own)
– Median rent: $895 (43% rent)
– Median household income: $47,894
– Top public schools: Popp’s Ferry Elementary School (A), Biloxi Junior High School (A), Bayou View Elementary School (A)
– Top private schools: St. Patrick Catholic High School (A), Cedar Lake Christian Academy (A), Christian Collegiate Academy (B+)
– Top places to live: Biloxi (A), Pass Christian (A), Long Beach (B+)

Cohee // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Lee County

– Population: 85,072
– Median home value: $133,700 (68% own)
– Median rent: $752 (32% rent)
– Median household income: $50,559
– Top public schools: Milam Elementary School (A), Pierce Street Elementary School (A), Rankin Elementary School (A)
– Top private schools: Tupelo Christian Preparatory School (A), Tupelo Christian Academy (C+), Calvary Baptist Kindergarten & Preschool (unavailable)
– Top places to live: Tupelo (A), Saltillo (B+), Shannon (C+)

Thomas R Machnitzki // Wikimedia Commons

#6. DeSoto County

– Population: 178,975
– Median home value: $168,500 (74% own)
– Median rent: $1,057 (26% rent)
– Median household income: $67,038
– Top public schools: Lewisburg High School (A), Center Hill Middle School (A), Hernando Hills Elementary (A)
– Top private schools: Northpoint Christian School (A), Desoto Christian Academy (B), Sacred Heart School (unavailable)
– Top places to live: Olive Branch (A), Hernando (A), Southaven (A)

NatalieMaynor // Wikimedia Commons

#5. Rankin County

– Population: 152,677
– Median home value: $162,500 (77% own)
– Median rent: $983 (23% rent)
– Median household income: $65,996
– Top public schools: Northshore Elementary School (A), Brandon Middle School (A), Highland Bluff Elementary School (A)
– Top private schools: Jackson Preparatory School (A), The Piney Woods School (B), Park Place Christian Academy (C+)
– Top places to live: Flowood (A), Brandon (A), Pearl (A)

Sturmgewehr88 // Wikimedia

#4. Forrest County

– Population: 75,224
– Median home value: $122,700 (55% own)
– Median rent: $773 (45% rent)
– Median household income: $39,840
– Top public schools: Petal Middle School (A+), Petal Elementary School (A+), Petal Upper Elementary School (A)
– Top private schools: Sacred Heart Catholic School (A), Presbyterian Christian School (A), Central Baptist School (unavailable)
– Top places to live: Petal (A), Hattiesburg (B+), Glendale (C+)

The diva777 // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Lamar County

– Population: 61,969
– Median home value: $177,700 (67% own)
– Median rent: $927 (33% rent)
– Median household income: $60,328
– Top public schools: Oak Grove Lower Elementary (A), Oak Grove High School (A), Oak Grove Middle School (A)
– Top private schools: Lamar Christian School (B+), Bass Memorial Academy (B+), Benedict Day School (A)
– Top places to live: West Hattiesburg (A), Arnold Line (A), Sumrall (A)

Jerrye & Roy Klotz, MD // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Lafayette County

– Population: 53,590
– Median home value: $199,700 (62% own)
– Median rent: $954 (38% rent)
– Median household income: $50,272
– Top public schools: Oxford Elementary School (A), Della Davidson Elementary School (A), Oxford Middle School (A)
– Top private schools: Regents School of Oxford (B)
– Top places to live: Oxford (A), Taylor (A), Abbeville (B)

Scoutandboo // Wikimedia Commons

#1. Madison County

– Population: 104,562
– Median home value: $219,700 (72% own)
– Median rent: $940 (28% rent)
– Median household income: $71,824
– Top public schools: Madison Middle School (A+), Mannsdale Upper Elementary School (A), Madison Station Elementary School (A)
– Top private schools: St. Andrew’s Episcopal School (A+), St. Joseph Catholic School (A), Madison-Ridgeland Academy (A)
– Top places to live: Madison (A+), Ridgeland (A+), Canton (C)

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