In MCDM problems, the decision maker is often ready to adopt the closest solution to the reference values in a choice or ranking problem. The reference values represent the desired results as established subjectively by the decision maker or determined through various scientific tools. In a criterion, the reference value could be the maximum value, the minimum value, or a specific value or range. Also, the acceptances degrees of ranges outside the reference may differ from each other in a criterion. Furthermore, measurements in a criterion may have been obtained with any of the nominal, ordinal, interval, and ratio scales. For the decision problems, including qualitative criteria, the solution cannot be achieved without scaling of criteria with the existing MCDM methods. The purpose of this study is to propose the Nearest Solution to References (REF) Method, a novel reference-based MCDM method, for the solution of decision problems having mixed data structure where references can be determined for criteria. (c) 2021 by the authors; licensee Growing Science, Canada.