FILE - DuPage County

DuPage County administration building located in Wheaton.

(The Center Square) – A website that ranks the best schools and places to live in the country has made a list of the best counties in Illinois.

Niche ranks counties by using a variety of factors including schools, cost of living, job opportunities and home values.

The most livable county is DuPage County just outside Chicago. DuPage County also showed up in the national rankings at #9. Niche lists Clarendon Hills, Naperville and Hinsdale as the best places to live in DuPage County.

Lake County was ranked second followed by McLean County in third.

Charlie Moore, president and CEO of the McLean County Chamber of Commerce, says housing affordability helped put McLean County near the top of the list.

“The cost of a home in Bloomington-Normal or in McLean County compared to that of Cook County or DuPage County really is amazing on what you can buy per square foot in McLean County than you can in large major metro markets,” Moore said.

The median home value in McLean County is $167,000 compared with $308,500 in DuPage County.

The rest of the county rankings:

4. Champaign

5. Sangamon

6. Cook

7. Kane

8. Peoria

9. Will

10. St. Clair

11. Kendall

12. Monroe

13. Jackson

14. McHenry

15. Madison

16. Woodford

17. Piatt

18. Rock Island

19. DeKalb

20. Macon

21. Winnebago

22. Effingham

23. Brown

24. Tazewell

25. McDonough

Nationally, Los Alamos County in New Mexico was ranked as the most livable county in America, receiving an A+ grade from Niche. Johnson County in Kansas was second, followed by Hamilton County in Indiana.

Staff Reporter

Kevin Bessler reports on statewide issues in Illinois for the Center Square. He has over 30 years of experience in radio news reporting throughout the Midwest.