Starting a family can be very expensive, which new parents learn immediately. That's why when economic times get tough, such as the current U.S. recession, birth rates tend to take a dip.
However, 2013 saw a small increase in births after a five-year span in which each successive year had a decrease in the number of births. This inspired "Forbes" to ask demographer Wendell Cox to see which cities in the U.S. had the fastest-growing number of new families. Cox looked at the changes in the number of 5 to 14-year-olds in the country's largest metropolitan statistical areas, and here's the list of the top 10 cities attracting the most families:
1. Raleigh, N.C.
2. Austin, Texas
3. Las Vegas
4. Charlotte, N.C.
5. Phoenix, Ariz.
6. Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas
7. Atlanta, Ga.
8. Houston, Texas
9. Nashville, Tenn.
10. Orlando, Fla.
So as you can see, the south and southwest are booming with new families. Many of these cities also have a strong suburban feel to them. Economic growth and affordable housing available in a few of these cities, such as Raleigh, Austin and Charlotte, have helped them attract families.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, the biggest decrease in new families has occurred in the larger cities on the coasts, such as Los Angeles and the New York metropolitan area. Some of these cities, like New York, have recovered from the recession, so other factors, such as a culture of childlessness and the rising cost of housing, have influenced the flight of new families. Cities that have been hit the hardest by the recession, including Buffalo and Rochester, N.Y., Pittsburgh and Detroit, are at the bottom of this list.
But in case you want to raise your family amidst luxury and riches, maybe you'd like to be around some of the most affluent Americans. Business Insider recently looked at the most affluent town in every state based on income estimates from the 2008 to 2012 American Community Survey. Top towns in this list include many suburbs of major cities, such as Hidden Hills, Calif., Chevy Chase, M.D. and Scarsdale, N.Y.
Or maybe you're really vain, and you need to raise your kin around beautiful people. If that's the case, San Francisco, Providence, R.I. and Nashville are your best bets with as cities with the most attractive people, according to "Travel + Leisure." Or perhaps a strong sense of patriotism in your city is really important to you, in which case Nashville, Cinncinati and Indianapolis would be good choices, since they've been deemed the top three "Most American Cities."
Some of these aforementioned factors might be important to you in deciding where you want to start a family. But really, as long as your hometown is safe and has what will make your family happy, that's all anybody really needs.