15 Safest Places to Live in Iowa – 2016

The 15 Safest Places to Live in Iowa, 2016

About the State of Iowa

Iowa is the only state with both its east and west borders formed by rivers. Originally an agricultural economy, the state of Iowa suffered a major recession due to the farm crisis of the 1980s which caused a significant decline in the state’s population. Today, the state’s population growth outpaces the overall U.S. population growth rate with a more stable and mixed economy including manufacturing, biotechnology and services for finance, insurance and government. In 2010, CNBC recognized Iowa as the sixth best state in the nation for business.

More than just farmland and fields, Iowa is part of the heart and soul of our country. A state with a proven resilience, emerging from economic struggle to rank as the 3rd Safest Place To Live in the U.S. Below are the safest communities you’ll find in the Hawkeye State.

How We Picked the Safest Places to Live in Iowa

Where do the Iowans hang their hats each night and rest peacefully knowing they’re in one of the safest places to live in the third safest state? To find out we took a look at the most recent complete data available from the FBI with the Uniform Crime Report and other verifiable data sources to find out what the communities of Iowa looked like when it came to crime, health and safety. We limited our search to towns and cities that had a minimum population of 2,500 residents. Once we had our list we compared the numbers of reported crimes in each place. Looking at both violent crimes like murder, assault and rape as well as property crimes like burglary, theft and arson, we calculated the overall total number of crimes and then determined the rate of crime per 1,000 residents in each community and then stack ranked them.

If you live in Iowa and can’t find your town listed, it may be due to one of two reasons: either you live in a small town with less than 2,500 residents which falls outside of our minimum population threshold. Or, the FBI Uniform Crime Report did not have complete data available to us, in which case we were unable to include the town for our consideration. Below is AlarmSystemReviews.com’s list of the 15 safest places to live in Iowa.

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Marengo Iowa’s Safest Place To Live

Situated in the heart of the Iowa River Valley, Marengo is bordered by the Iowa River to the north offering residents and visitors beautiful parks and trails, fishing and hunting along the Iowa River. Known for the Marengo Public Library, it is believed that Marengo is the smallest town in the United States to have received a donation from Andrew Carnegie to build the library in 1904.

Population: 2,511
Violent Crime Rates (per 1,000): 2.0
Property Crime Rates (per 1,000): 2.4


A suburb of the Quart Cities metropolitan area, Eldridge suffered numerous setbacks during its early years between a faltering railroad, smallpox epidemic and major fires and tornados. But the town has shown remarkable resiliency, recovering and flourishing thanks to their farming community maintaining the town’s position as a grain and livestock shipping center.

Population: 6,126
Violent Crime Rates (per 1,000):1.3
Property Crime Rates (per 1,000): 3.4


Located in the southeastern part of Iowa near the Missouri border, Bloomfield Iowa is the county seat for Davis County. The town is part of the Emergency Communications Network, offering residents high-speed telephone emergency notifications through the CodeRed program which delivers critical community alerts for events such as weather emergencies, gas leaks, evacuation notices, missing children reports, to help the community prepare and respond more effectively in times of crisis.

Population: 2,644
Violent Crime Rates (per 1,000):2.3
Property Crime Rates (per 1,000): 3.8

Orange City

Orange City is located in the northwest corner of Iowa and was first called Holland before being renamed in honor of William of Orange. The towns Dutch roots are perhaps best illustrated by the city’s annual Tulip Festival which started in the 1930s and today is celebrated by over 100,000 visitors each year.

Population: 6,211
Violent Crime Rates (per 1,000):0.2
Property Crime Rates (per 1,000): 6.1


Founded by Richard Williams in 1854 along a bend in Old Man’s Creek, Williamsburg remained a small Welsh community until the railroad line from Cedar Rapids to Ottumwa was built in 1884. The railroad line passed through Williamsburg, leading to a surge in the town’s population. Until just recently, it wasn’t uncommon to hear conversation in German and Welsh inthe streets of Williamsburg.

Population: 3,146
Violent Crime Rates (per 1,000):0.0
Property Crime Rates (per 1,000): 6.7

#6. Independence

Population: 5,970

Violent Crime Rate: 0.3
Property Crime Rate: 6.5

#7. Humboldt

Population: 4,623

Violent Crime Rate: 1.3
Property Crime Rate: 5.8

#8. New Hampton

Population: 3,570

Violent Crime Rate: 1.4
Property Crime Rate: 6.4

#9. Wilton

Population: 2,809

Violent Crime Rate: 2.5
Property Crime Rate: 5.7

#10. Polk City

Population: 4,123

Violent Crime Rate: 0.0
Property Crime Rate: 8.2

#11. Story City

Population: 3,434

Violent Crime Rate: 0.3
Property Crime Rate: 8.4

#12. Algona

Population: 5,504

Violent Crime Rate: 2.5
Property Crime Rate: 6.4

#13. Waukee

Population: 17,952

Violent Crime Rate: 0.8
Property Crime Rate: 8.2

#14. Norwalk

Population: 9,797

Violent Crime Rate: 0.1
Property Crime Rate: 9.2

#15. Johnston

Population: 20,435

Violent Crime Rate: 0.8
Property Crime Rate: 8.5

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Don’t See Your City?

If you live in Iowa but do not see you city on our safest places list it may be for a couple reasons. Our rankings only cover towns with populations of at least 2,500 residents and complete crime data based on the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report. If your community didn’t meet this criteria, we were unable to include it in this year’s rankings.  For those visitors who would like to see more than the top 15 safest cities in Iowa we’ve included rankings for the top 100 below.

1. Marengo
2. Eldridge
3. Bloomfield
4. Orange City
5. Williamsburg
6. Independence
7. Humboldt
8. New Hampton
9. Wilton
10. Polk City
11. Story City
12. Algona
13. Waukee
14. Norwalk
15. Johnston
16. Shenandoah
17. Le Claire
18. Hawarden
19. West Liberty
20. Albia
21. Carroll
22. Pleasant Hill
23. Osage
24. North Liberty
25. Decorah
26. Camanche
27. Vinton
28. Dyersville
29. Mount Vernon
30. Monticello
31. Ankeny
32. Eagle Grove
33. Jefferson
34. Bettendorf
35. Cherokee
36. Estherville
37. Washington
38. Anamosa
39. Cresco
40. Forest City
41. Marion
42. De Witt
43. Atlantic
44. Emmetsburg
45. Pella
46. Charles City
47. Carlisle
48. Winterset
49. Urbandale
50. Osceola
51. Ames
52. Glenwood
53. Sheldon
54. Tipton
55. Waverly
56. Cedar Falls
57. Manchester
58. Creston
59. Webster City
60. Spirit Lake
61. Clive
62. Sergeant Bluff
63. Hiawatha
64. Iowa Falls
65. Onawa
66. Boone
67. Fort Madison
68. Le Mars
69. Storm Lake
70. Spencer
71. Perry
72. Adel
73. Muscatine
74. West Des Moines
75. Iowa City
76. Dubuque
77. Indianola
78. Grinnell
79. Coralville
80. Oelwein
81. Evansdale
82. Mount Pleasant
83. Altoona
84. Fairfield
85. Red Oak
86. Clarinda
87. Chariton
88. Maquoketa
89. Marshalltown
90. Mason City
91. Clear Lake
92. Windsor Heights
93. Burlington
94. Cedar Rapids
95. Sioux City
96. Newton
97. Centerville
98. Ottumwa
99. Davenport
100. Carter Lake
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