These are the best US cities for a fresh start, study finds

With its low rents and nearly fully insured population, Buffalo, NY, takes the top spot

If you’ve ever had to move to another city for a job, you’ll know just how difficult relocating your life can be.

But some parts of the country may be better suited for a fresh start — places like Buffalo, New York; Minneapolis; Salt Lake City; and Austin, Texas; are among some of the most receptive, a new study by online lending exchange LendingTree indicates.

To come to these findings, the study’s authors looked at eight elements that would impact a person’s launch in a new city, including the cost of housing, median income and rates of health insurance coverage at 50 of the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S. To calculate a resident’s chances of landing a good job, the study also examined the number of adults between 35 and 64 who are single, enrolled in school and covered by some form of health insurance.

With its low rents and nearly fully insured (94.2 percent) population, Buffalo outpaced every other U.S. city as the best place in the country for a fresh start.

Minneapolis, Salt Lake City and Austin also fared well, ranking next (and closely) for factors including employment, median income and school enrollment. Seattle, the city that has outpaced San Francisco lately in home values, came in at number 12 on the list.

Credit: LendingTree

Credit: LendingTree

LendingTree Fresh Start Top 25

Credit: LendingTree

As an online marketplace for loans, LendingTree also looked at someone’s chances of recovering from a financial disaster — in particular, debt collector laws and credit scores three years after declaring bankruptcy. When it came to someone’s chances of getting out of debt, Buffalo, Austin, Milwaukee and Boston came out on top.

“[Buffalo] residents who declare bankruptcy have an average credit score of 664 three years on, tied for the second highest score for the cities reviewed, suggesting that conditions are favorable for financial recovery,” the study summary reads.

But those who seek a fresh start in sun-basked parts of the country may be out of luck — Miami; Orlando, Florida; and Riverside, California; all ranked at the very bottom of cities due to high rents and low median incomes.

Email Veronika Bondarenko