WalletHub ranks Crystal Lake in top 10 for Best Small Cities in America

Algonquin, McHenry, LITH also rank high

CRYSTAL LAKE – A national survey told the people of Crystal Lake something many of them already know – it's a great place to live.

WalletHub, a Washington, D.C.-based personal and small business financial advisory group, named the city in the top 10 of the Best Small Cities in America and the best of small towns in Illinois. Crystal Lake placed 10th out of 1,268 small cities ranked.

The city also has some local company – the top three Illinois cities as calculated by WalletHub are in McHenry County.

The ranking, Crystal Lake Mayor Aaron Shepley said, is no surprise. He said a number of factors – from good residents, lots of amenities and a forward-thinking city staff – contributed to the honor.

“I think when you combine all those things together, it makes for a wonderful community," he said.

WalletHub ranked Algonquin 25th and McHenry 45th. Also placing in the top 100 was Lake in the Hills, ranked 65th.

WalletHub ranks cities on a 100-point scale based on 22 different criteria, with a maximum of 25 points each granted for affordability, economic health, quality of life and education and health.

Crystal Lake scored 56.2 percent, ranking at 12th highest on the list for education and health. It scored particularly high for access to health care and the quality of its school systems, where it is served by Crystal Lake Elementary School District 47 and Community High School District 155.

Individual criteria also include items such as employment rate, number of restaurants, cost of living and bars and coffee shops per capita.

Princeton, New Jersey, won the top honor with a score of 61.9 points. The city in Illinois that ranked the worst on the list was East St. Louis, which scored 35 points and ranked 1,200th out of 1,268.