What happened, Florida? Just one year ago, you ranked among the least stressful states in the nation, according to Gallup. But 2014 is the year of anxiety in Florida, at least according to the real estate blog Movoto, which recently named Florida the number one most stressed out state in the country.
To rank the lower 48 states according to stress, Movoto's study took several factors into account, including the percentage of the population with a commute over 20 minutes; the rate of unemployment; hours worked; population density; percentage of income spent on housing; and percentage of population without health insurance. Not measured: miles of beachfront; lack of polar vortexes; palm trees per capita.
Given those factors, it's not surprising that Florida came out on top (or bottom, depending on how you look at it). The Sunshine State's 11.3 unemployment rate and 25.8 percent of the population without health insurance earned it the number one ranking. (I-95 commute times probably didn't help, either.)
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Georgia, New Jersey, and California followed Florida in the rankings. In general, Movoto found, "the farther from water you are, the more relaxed you get." Which makes sense, given that the population thins out towards the middle of the U.S., and one of the site's criteria is population density.
Okay, so Florida can be a stressful place to live. But maybe the benefits of living here are worth a little stress. Remember: The least stressed state in the country, according to Movoto, is North Dakota. Would you rather live in North Dakota? Yeah, we didn't think so.