All the palm trees in the world can't fan away the stress of maxing out your credit cards while trapped in a hateful marriage based exclusively on money, prestige, and Botox injections. Such is life in Miami: For the last eight years running, the city has ranked as one of the most-stressed places in America, and this year is no different. According to the financial analysis and web content creation machine WalletHub, Miami is the fifth-most stressed city in America, behind only Newark, Detroit, Cleveland, and Jackson, Mississippi.
Given that this city has been grinding its residents into frazzled messes for at least a decade (if not more), the methodology behind the rankings shouldn't surprise anyone: WalletHub sorted 150 cities according to each town's relative job stress, financial difficulties, family stability, and health and safety.
Miami performed well when it came to the one thing we're pretty good at, which is not showing up to work. We rank exactly average (70 out of 150) in terms of job stress, given that nobody wears ties here and everyone shows up late to everything always. (WalletHub ranked cities on weekly work hours, job security, commuter stress, and wages — given that commuting in this town is hellish, they seem to have underrated Miami here.)
But Miami ranked among the 25 worst American cities in terms of "health and safety," a category that measured cities in terms of their depression, suicide, health insurance, physical activity, and crime rates. Not surprisingly, Detroit was worst in this category.
However, Miami pretty much tanked when it came to WalletHub's other two major categories: financial and family health.
In terms of financial burden, we're the third worst place in America. (No surprise there.) The county's median income is dreadfully low — about $43,000 per year — compared to pretty much every other major metropolis in America. WalletHub also dinged the Magic City when it came to personal debt, bankruptcy rates, poverty rates, and housing affordability.
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Likewise, our "family stress" rate reflects Miami's deep affordability issues, too: We rank fourth worst in America when it comes to divorce rates and our number of single parents. We're also apparently just selfish assholes: WalletHub's "family stress" category took relationship cheating and "relationship ties" into account, too.
Various news outlets, websites, and actual scientists have measured cities based on these same factors for years, and for the last decade, Miami has ranked within the five or six most mentally taxing places to live in the nation. Other cities have topped the ranks and then faded: Over the last ten years, Las Vegas, Tampa, Orlando, and now Newark have topped various lists from the likes of Forbes, CNBC, and others.
But Miami keeps hanging in there, which is proof positive that the city's political class has done little to make residents' lives better in that time frame. Recent news exemplifies this point: Miami Beach has failed to create affordable housing and is kicking its workforce-housing goals down the road another ten years, and Miami-Dade officials are still fighting over whether to follow through on a public-transportation plan that was first floated in 2002.
As the city's jet-set class gets rich, we've been left to tear our hair out in the meantime.