HIGH POINT, N.C. (WGHP) — Safety is often the number one priority when searching for a new home.

Whether it be feeling safe from crime, natural disasters or financial crises, everyone seeks security and comfort in their environments.

Based on these factors, WalletHub has created a ranking comparing 180 U.S. cities based on how safe they are.

Six North Carolina cities, including two in the Piedmont Triad, made appearances on the list.

The results for those cities varied widely with some being among the safest in the country, others in the middle and one towards the lower tier of the list.

The cities are ranked based on these three weighted factors:

  • Home & Community Safety: 50 points
    • Factors include the number of violent crimes, amount of first responders, traffic fatalities, drug-poisoning deaths and road quality
  • Natural Disaster Risk: 30 points
    • Factors include the risk of earthquakes, flooding, hail, hurricanes, tornadoes and wildfires
  • Financial Safety: 20 points
    • Factors include unemployment rates, the share of uninsured people, debt-to-income ratios, poverty rates, job security and employment growth

Without further ado, here’s how North Carolina cities were ranked on the list of 182 U.S. cities with #1 being the safest and #180 being the least safe.


Fayetteville, North Carolina: #138

Home & Community Safety Natural Disaster RiskFinancial Safety
Fayetteville’s rankings in the three weighted factors

The home of Fort Bragg and award-winning artist J. Cole is ranked as the least safe NC city on the list.

Factors holding down Fayetteville include its ranking in the bottom 40 of the list for both Home & Community Safety as well as Financial Safety.

Fayetteville does rank as an above-average city in terms of safety from Natural Disaster Risk.

Greensboro, North Carolina: #69

Home & Community Safety Natural Disaster RiskFinancial Safety
Greensboro’s rankings in the three weighted factors

More specifically to the Piedmont Triad, Greensboro comes in as an above-average city in terms of overall safety.

The number one factor holding down Greensboro is its slightly below-average ranking in terms of Home & Community Safety which is the largest weighted factor in the rankings.

Greensboro ranks as a solidly above-average city in terms of Financial Safety.

Greensboro’s most positive factor is safety from Natural Disaster Risk where it ranks near the top 30 nationally due to its position in Central NC.

Durham, North Carolina: #53

Home & Community Safety Natural Disaster RiskFinancial Safety
Durham’s rankings in the three weighted factors

Next up on the list is Durham which comes in with a solidly above-average ranking nationally despite being fourth out of six ranked NC cities.

The main factor dragging down Durham’s ranking is its barely above-average rankings for Home & Community Safety.

Working in Durham’s favor is the fact that it ranks in the top 45 for both safety from Natural Disaster Risk and Financial Safety.

Charlotte, North Carolina: #43

Home & Community Safety Natural Disaster RiskFinancial Safety
Charlotte’s rankings in the three weighted factors

Coming in at number three for safest cities in NC is its most populous city, Charlotte.

In the case of Charlotte, we see the impact that Home & Community Safety has on the rankings as it vaulted The Queen City 10 spots ahead of Durham despite Charlotte ranking lower in all other factors.

Charlotte’s best factor is its ranking in the top 40 for financial safety, which is not surprising given its status as a banking center.

Charlotte also makes a strong case for its spot in the rankings by ranking well above the average in all three factors.

Winston-Salem, North Carolina: #12

Home & Community Safety Natural Disaster RiskFinancial Safety
Winston-Salem’s rankings in the three weighted factors

The second safest city in North Carolina hails from the Piedmont Triad in Winston-Salem.

Winston-Salem is in the upper tier of safest cities in the entire nation with its ranking in the top 15 nationally.

While Winston-Salem ranks lower than Charlotte and Durham in terms of Financial Safety, it vaults into the upper tier of the national rankings thanks to its top 30 ranking in Home & Community Safety.

Also, much like its Piedmont Triad neighbor, Winston-Salem offers great protection from Natural Disaster Risk.

Raleigh, North Carolina: #9

Home & Community Safety Natural Disaster RiskFinancial Safety
Raleigh’s rankings in the three weighted factors

The safest city in North Carolina is its capital, Raleigh.

Not only is Raleigh ranked as the safest city in the Tar Heel State but it also ranks among the top 10 in the nation and number one in the Southeastern U.S.

The top factor for Raleigh is its Home & Community Safety ranking which is the best in the state and top 20 nationally.

Not far behind for reasons that Raleigh is so highly ranked is its Financial Safety Ranking which is also the best in the state and top 25 nationally.

While its safety from Natural Disaster Risk is the second worst in NC, that ranking still places it well above average nationally.


The full 180-city list can be viewed below.

Overall RankCityTotal Score Home & Community SafetyNatural Disaster RiskFinancial Safety 
1Columbia, MD85.9916392
2Nashua, NH84.4411272
3Laredo, TX83.96424107
4Portland, ME83.4916118
5Warwick, RI83.1952298
6Yonkers, NY83.19339113
7Gilbert, AZ82.04121460
8Burlington, VT81.90273711
9Raleigh, NC81.46195524
10Lewiston, ME81.40331221
11Juneau, AK81.3960501
12Winston-Salem, NC81.03264059
13Madison, WI80.92158949
14Bismarck, ND80.51376418
15South Burlington, VT80.2559363
16Chandler, AZ80.1141838
17Fremont, CA79.98101575
18Virginia Beach, VA79.852044100
19Scottsdale, AZ79.75355341
20Brownsville, TX79.70222153
21Boise, ID79.56387123
22Cedar Rapids, IA79.532810132
23Manchester, NH79.51533016
24Pearl City, HI79.482N/A10
25Pembroke Pines, FL79.451448152
26Irvine, CA79.25615061
27Cape Coral, FL79.1913111115
28Worcester, MA79.01431769
29Peoria, AZ78.87482665
30Casper, WY78.70562083
31Bridgeport, CT78.334716108
32Fargo, ND77.99737713
33Chesapeake, VA77.973069130
34Las Cruces, NM77.89516679
35Salem, OR77.89657037
36Fort Wayne, IN77.83545981
37Aurora, IL77.771791155
38Chula Vista, CA77.691813274
39Santa Rosa, CA77.662115314
40Glendale, CA77.508151124
41Henderson, NV77.412595140
42Tempe, AZ77.4077954
43Charlotte, NC77.34695736
44Providence, RI77.335010126
45Cheyenne, WY77.25499782
46Mesa, AZ77.24611880
47Nampa, ID77.19664971
48San Diego, CA77.113613033
49Irving, TX77.062912570
50Lincoln, NE77.006210519
51Missoula, MT76.865810851
52Rochester, NY76.82754101
53Durham, NC76.82824234
54Santa Clarita, CA76.777168147
55Grand Prairie, TX76.6539112105
56Sioux Falls, SD76.576710325
57Hialeah, FL76.369128176
58Vancouver, WA76.35818726
59Grand Rapids, MI76.3186753
60Spokane, WA76.09901939
61Tampa, FL75.69689284
62Omaha, NE75.617110745
63Oxnard, CA75.553114889
64Rancho Cucamonga, CA75.473415947
65Salt Lake City, UT75.428011622
66Oceanside, CA75.324214457
67New Haven, CT75.13101673
68Huntington Beach, CA74.823217063
69Greensboro, NC74.711023367
70North Las Vegas, NV74.654099169
71Tallahassee, FL74.638828131
72Norfolk, VA74.247481150
73San Jose, CA74.19721696
74Newport News, VA73.849721146
75Honolulu, HI73.8323N/A27
76Garden Grove, CA73.784417188
77Glendale, AZ73.5811213106
78Ontario, CA73.575715675
79Plano, TX73.5010511342
80Fontana, CA73.495216387
81Minneapolis, MN73.409913117
82Billings, MT73.34134589
83Moreno Valley, CA73.2845166119
84Overland Park, KS73.239812148
85Boston, MA73.111293520
86San Antonio, TX73.079473132
87Jersey City, NJ73.068984136
88Sacramento, CA72.969111956
89Columbia, SC72.918783157
90Newark, NJ72.907829179
91Des Moines, IA72.728314350
92Santa Ana, CA72.7155167116
93Mobile, AL72.5710043164
94Anaheim, CA72.556315499
95Arlington, TX72.4284122122
96Rapid City, SD72.3510812935
97El Paso, TX72.3210974133
98Huntington, WV72.3111947104
99Lubbock, TX72.2911011464
100Montgomery, AL72.209593165
101Port St. Lucie, FL71.9224N/A114
102Gulfport, MS71.8711156162
103Tucson, AZ71.7111765118
104Amarillo, TX71.648516268
105Jacksonville, FL71.6112062128
106Columbus, GA71.5111338167
107West Valley City, UT71.4746N/A30
108Anchorage, AK71.409216144
109Miami, FL71.3770118178
110Fort Smith, AR71.231339446
111Aurora, CO71.1496133117
112Knoxville, TN70.9011878135
113Phoenix, AZ70.821372594
113Fresno, CA70.8212111776
115St. Paul, MN70.6764N/A15
116Augusta, GA70.6413661171
117Huntsville, AL70.5810714297
118Modesto, CA70.5212413531
119Toledo, OH70.4812860141
120Pittsburgh, PA70.441387258
121Nashville, TN70.4112211577
121Tulsa, OK70.41116120102
123Dover, DE70.391311173
124Louisville, KY70.3712710678
125Austin, TX70.231439829
126Riverside, CA70.219316495
127New York, NY70.1313234138
128Charleston, WV69.991504528
129Fort Worth, TX69.88104134144
130Buffalo, NY69.72152540
131Akron, OH69.6412668163
132Garland, TX69.64130110111
133Chicago, IL69.6411579174
134Atlanta, GA69.6312382154
135Reno, NV69.5111415872
136San Francisco, CA69.501461234
137Portland, OR69.481518612
138Fayetteville, NC69.2514051151
139Long Beach, CA69.10103152134
140Wichita, KS68.66106172110
141Cincinnati, OH68.4414576137
142Albuquerque, NM68.411498866
143Corpus Christi, TX68.27160390
144Bakersfield, CA68.16125146109
145Wilmington, DE68.1014423175
146Lexington-Fayette, KY68.0976N/A52
147Springfield, MO67.9214212786
148Seattle, WA67.921481417
149Stockton, CA67.7213514085
150St. Petersburg, FL67.5479N/A55
151Indianapolis, IN67.35138124120
152Shreveport, LA67.23147100143
153Houston, TX67.18141102158
154Orlando, FL66.741633296
155Milwaukee, WI66.6615452148
156Las Vegas, NV65.3515396161
157Colorado Springs, CO64.86157126112
158Tacoma, WA64.1815914591
159Columbus, OH64.1616946139
160Charleston, SC63.9415516593
161Baltimore, MD63.2816767159
162Kansas City, MO63.00162138129
163Little Rock, AR62.94156147145
164Denver, CO62.8016613962
165New Orleans, LA62.4817031177
166Dallas, TX62.19172104121
167Birmingham, AL61.90161136170
168Washington, DC61.7517780103
169Cleveland, OH61.2617154180
170Philadelphia, PA61.1217615160
171Richmond, VA60.8217875127
172Los Angeles, CA60.75164149149
173Chattanooga, TN60.54175109125
174Jackson, MS60.48168137172
175Oakland, CA60.4517415543
176Oklahoma City, OK58.49158173123
177Memphis, TN58.4717385182
178Baton Rouge, LA56.5118290166
179Detroit, MI55.5818141181
180San Bernardino, CA54.41180160142
181Fort Lauderdale, FL48.78165N/A168
182St. Louis, MO42.81179N/A156