No. 6: New Jersey
Weaknesses: High tax rate, high cost of living
Thanks to Tony Soprano, New Jersey is often associated with crime and the mafia, but the state actually received excellent marks for safety. The problem with the Garden State is its high cost of living and high taxes, which pushed New Jersey into our bottom 10.
Last year, home prices in Newark were 63 percent higher than the national average. Renters didn't have much luck, either. Apartments in the city averaged $1,527 a month -- 67 percent higher than the national average.
New Jersey also received low scores for happiness in terms of emotional health and work environment, as well as for taxes. New Jersey's property tax collections are the highest in the nation, and state and local income taxes rank ninth among the states.