There’s reason for founders to look to smaller cities for their latest ventures. While San Francisco and New York receive nearly half of all venture capital investment in the country, a high cost of living makes it hard for entrepreneurs to start businesses there, and workers can be stretched thin even on six-figure salaries. Even smaller start-up scenes that have cropped up in response, like Austin, Texas, have seen real-estate prices skyrocket thanks to an influx of newcomers. As a result, workers are moving beyond city limits. A 2018 Gallup poll found a greater share of Americans would prefer to live in a small city or a suburb, over a big city. Millennials especially are now fleeing big cities for greener, and more affordable, pastures.
8. Chandler, Arizona Median household income: $85,527 Living wage: $11.90 VC deals since 2016: 122
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