USA Today published their “worst cities to live in America” list, and two Hawaii cities made the top ten.   Out of the fifty cities listed, four cities were in the state of Hawaii.     The report rated factors including high crime rates, widespread poverty, lack of entertainment options and weak job markets.     

* Rankings provided by USA Today and Wall Street 24/7

#4. Makaha, Hawaii


• Population: 8,832
• Poverty rate: 30.1 percent (top 10 percent)
• 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: N/A
• Median home value: $407,200 (top 25 percent)

USA Today states:

Makaha is the worst city to live in in Hawaii and among the five worst in the country. Like other cities in the state, Makaha ranks poorly largely because of its high cost of living and low affordability. Goods and services are 61.4 percent more expensive in the city than they are on average nationwide. Housing is particularly unaffordable. The typical home in Makaha is worth nearly $564,000 – about eight times the median annual household income in the city of $51,833. Meanwhile, the typical American home is worth $193,500 – just 3.4 times the median income of $57,652.

Makaha is also struggling with a high jobless rate. The Census estimates that an average of 9.7 percent of the city’s labor force has been out of work over the last five years, more than double the comparable national unemployment rate of 4.1 percent.

#8. Waianae, Hawaii


• Population: 13,636
• Poverty rate: 27.0 percent (top 10 percent)
• 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: N/A
• Median home value: $339,500 (top 25 percent)

USA Today: 

Waianae, Hawaii, is one of the few cities on this list with a higher median income than the U.S. as a whole. The typical household in the city earns $60,282 a year, or $2,630 more than the typical American household. Bigger paychecks are not nearly enough to cover the high cost of living in Waianae, however. Goods and services in the area are 61.4 percent more expensive than they are on average nationwide.

The high cost of living imposes an especially heavy burden on the relatively large share of Waianae residents living below the poverty line. Of the city’s 13,636 residents, 27 percent live in poverty, a higher poverty rate than in over 90 percent of U.S. cities.

#23. Maili, Hawaii


• Population: 10,190
• Poverty rate: 20.2 percent (top 25 percent)
• 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: N/A
• Median home value: $436,200 (top 25 percent)

USA Today:

Maili, Hawaii, ranks among the worst cities to live largely because of its high cost of living – which does not align with what many residents can comfortably afford. Goods and services in the area are 61.4 percent more expensive than they are nationwide, on average. Though the typical area household earns $71,806 per year, incomes are actually far lower than average after accounting for cost of living. The cost of living is especially straining for the larger than typical 20.2 percent share of residents living in poverty.

Housing is particularly expensive in the city. The typical area home is worth $436,200 – or about 6.1 times the median household income. Nationwide, the typical home is worth $193,500, or just 3.4 times higher than the $57,652 median income.

#25. Nanakuli, Hawaii


• Population: 11,757
• Poverty rate: 16.2 percent
• 2017 violent crimes per 100,000 people: N/A
• Median home value: $310,300 (top 25 percent)

USA Today:

Even though Nanakuli, Hawaii, has a relatively high median annual household income at $65,101, residents typically do not have as much purchasing power as the average American. This is because the cost of living in the city is 61 percent higher than the average cost of living across the nation. Adjusted for cost of living, the median income in Nanakuli is only about $40,000.

A high cost of living is especially burdensome for people who are out of work. Nanakuli has an 8.3 percent five-year unemployment rate, more than double the comparable U.S. rate.


For the full list of all fifty cities, click here