12/20/2012 03:37 pm ET Updated Dec 21, 2012

The 15 Friendliest Towns In America Named By Forbes And Nextdoor.com

Did yours make the cut?

No matter where life takes us, we always have a special connection to our hometowns. It's only natural to feel some pride for the place you grew up. And according to a recent assessment, your town might have actually helped turn you into a friendlier person.

In the study, Forbes and San Francisco-based social network Nextdoor.com rated 500 small metro areas with populations between 5,500 and 150,000 to determine which ones were the kindest.

But what exactly makes a town "friendly"? Based off the assessment, which pulled data from the U.S. Census, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Chronicle of Philanthropy and City-Data.com, these are the factors that were considered:

  • Percentage of owner-occupied homes
  • Crime rate
  • Charitable giving
  • Percentage of college graduates

Sammamish, Wash. nabbed the number one spot on the list, with a couple of other west coast towns trailing close behind. And it doesn't come as much of a surprise that many of the towns that placed fall in the midwestern and southern regions of the country. They don't call it southern hospitality for nothing.

And although being the friendliest might not necessarily mean they're the most popular, living in one of these upstanding communities will definitely give you major bragging rights. But don't brag too much -- that wouldn't be very friendly, now would it?

Flip through the slideshow below to find out if your town made the list!

America's Friendliest Towns

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