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Choosing a new place to live can be overwhelming when you can move anywhere. Even if you know which city you’re moving to, you can choose from 10 or more suburbs. Because every town has its personality, it helps find the best location for your lifestyle. To help you answer the question “Where should I live?” we’ve selected the qualities you’re looking for in a new city and explored some of the best options for each. Just decide what’s important to you and read on for our recommendations in this category.
Where Should I Live? If you want to live near the beach
Who can resist the beach? From sunbathing to surfing to boating, there is always something to do. Also, the temperature during the day is usually moderate and comfortable due to the water. Living near the beach also has health benefits. Salty air can ease asthma, and sunlight can help you produce vitamin D. Plus, the sound of ocean waves can relieve stress.
But you will pay for the privilege of living near the beach. Real estate costs more in beach communities, as do things like groceries.
Florida has many great beach towns, but Sarasota is known for its arts scene and food. It is also one of the fastest-growing communities in the country. It has one of the best beaches in the world, Nap Beach. As if that wasn’t enough, six islands are located off the city’s coast. Sunbathe, hike, golf, and more.
Charleston, South Carolina
Long known as a big city for food, Charleston also attracts water sports enthusiasts who come to surf, paddle, kayak, and fish. Folly Beach is known for its wide beach and second-largest fishing pier on the East Coast, but other fun spots in the sun include Kiawah Island, Sullivan Island, and Palm Island.
Port St. Lucie, Florida
Another great Florida beach town, Port St. Lucie, has 21 miles of beaches, each with a unique personality. For example, Waveland Beach has a lifeguard on duty, perfect for families. Frederick Douglass Park Beach is one of the few beaches in Florida that allows horseback riding. Need more reasons to move here? Property prices in beach communities are reasonable, with the average listing price of just $390,000.
Corpus Christi, Texas
If real estate prices are high on your list of worries, consider moving to Corpus Christi. The city has access to over 100 miles of sandy beaches between the Gulf of Mexico and Corpus Christi Bay. These include Mustang Island, Padre Island National Seashore, and Whitecap Beach. The average home listing here is $274,900.
San Diego, California
With 70 miles of coastline, the San Diego metro area offers the ultimate beach life. Spend your free time on the shore sunbathing or surfing some of the best waves in the country. Or watch the sunset while dining at the beachfront restaurant. Top beaches include Coronado Central Beach, Empire Beach, and Mission Bay. However, this comes at a price. Homes in the area are expected to pay close to $1 million, according to Realtor.com.
Where Should I Live? If you want to live near a prestigious school
When looking for a new city, parents often prioritize their children’s education. But you pay dearly to live in a community with an excellent school district. And the cost of living can be higher than in other surrounding areas. It costs more, but you also get access to amenities like community parks, playgrounds, and swimming pools.
Naperville was ranked No. 1 in Niche.com’s America’s Best Cities to Raise a Family, and its cities with America’s best public schools. It also claimed that four of the state’s top 10 secondary schools and six of its top 10 primary schools were occupied. It has several special high schools. The Adler Planetarium and Museum of Science and Industry in downtown Chicago are also just an hour away.
Lake Oswego, Oregon
This Portland suburb deserves high marks as home to many of Oregon’s best schools. Both high schools are ranked in the top five nationally. It has some of the best public secondary and primary schools. But that’s only part of the story. Lake Oswego is a walking and hiking trails community. It also has a substantial park and recreation program. The tradeoff is a higher cost of living and a home transaction price of $387 per square foot.
Dallas, Southlake, Plano, and Koper all have excellent schools. But in terms of overall quality, the Frisco is hard to beat. The suburb has 70 miles of hiking trails, sculpture gardens, museums, and sports teams. Compared to other suburbs in Dallas, it is affordable. The average list price for a home in Frisco is $550,000 (or $174 per square foot). By comparison, Southlake’s average list price is $995,000.
Many cities have great school districts. Only one of them crosses the Potomac River directly from the nation’s capital. That means your kids should have plenty of opportunities to visit the top attractions in Washington, D.C. visit.
I look forward to seeing the Smithsonian, the National Mall, and even the White House. Or visit us with the whole family on weekends. Arlington also has 1,759 acres of parkland.
Overland Park, Kansas
Overland Park is part of the Kansas City metropolitan area and is home to the state’s top elementary, middle, and high schools. But that’s not the only reason to move here. The city has many attractions, such as the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art and the National World War I Museum. Housing is also affordable. The median home listing price is $375,000, and the average price per square foot is $161.
Where Should I Live? If you want to live in a city rich in nightlife
After sunset, some cities come alive with theaters, live music, dance clubs, and late-night restaurants. It can be attractive, especially if you don’t have kids or your kids are grown up. If you’re looking for a city with a lot to do late at night, pay close attention to its personality. Las Vegas never sleeps, but if you’re not interested in the excesses of the Strip, it’s probably not the place for you.
The nightlife in the Miami metro area is rich and varied. You can go salsa dancing one night in Little Havana and have a cocktail at the rooftop bar in the city center the next. Then dance another night at the Miami Beach Club. The city also celebrates diversity, with many venues catering to the LGBTQ+ community. Although the cost of living is 11% higher than the national average, it is much cheaper than New York City or San Francisco.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Do you like food? Of course, MGM Grand has nightclubs like Hakkasan, and Cromwell has Drai’s. But the city has also attracted some of the biggest names in music, from Lady Gaga to Lionel Richie. Chances are your favorite chef has a restaurant here. Start or end the night with a drink at a famous cocktail bar or party bar like Cabo Wabo Cantina.
New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans knows how to throw a party home to jazz and many of your favorite cocktails. But you’ll enjoy great music, food, and cocktails throughout the French Quarter. Bourbon Street is the hub of fun, with live music and free-flowing cocktails. Look for the same in French Row and Garden District.
Music lovers will appreciate Austin. The Texas capital is home to more than 250 live music venues, including rock, blues, jazz, hip-hop, etc. The city hosts numerous events throughout the year, including South by Southwest. It also hosts music festivals. However, living in Austin can be expensive. The average home listing price is $620,000. The cost of living is 9% higher than the national average.
Where Should I Live? If you long for big city life
Big cities have a lot to offer. Most have great nightlife and good public transport, weekend activities and good jobs. But they can also be expensive. Still, the high cost of living can be the price you pay for enjoying big city life.
New York City, New York
New York City tops the list when it comes to big city living. It is home to Wall Street and more than 50 Fortune 500 companies. After that, get off work, and you can catch a show on Broadway. Or dine at some of the best restaurants and parties in the country in this city that never sleeps. The Big Apple is also one of the most expensive places to live. The cost of living is 61% higher than the national average, and the median home listing price is $859,000.
San Francisco, California
On the West Coast, San Francisco has fantastic restaurants and cocktail bars. It has a historic music venue and is one of the most robust LGBTQ+ communities. Living in San Francisco is more than double the national average. Additionally, the average home listing price is $1.3 million.
Chicago has it all. It has a theatre district, excellent museums and extensive public transport. It is also home to legendary sports teams such as the Chicago Cubs, White Sox, Bulls, and Bears. The median home price in this market is $350,000.
Los Angeles, California
In addition to world-class museums, Los Angeles is also close to attractions like Disneyland. It also has access to more than 75 miles of coastline and hundreds of hiking trails. The median home price is $985,000. Mild climate: The average year-round temperature is between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Where Should I Live? If you want to live in a small town
Small-town living has its perks. It’s quieter and slower-paced, and you can develop a real sense of community over time. However, what exactly is a small town is still up for debate. Some say small towns have less than 1,000 people, while others increase it to 50,000. We’ve narrowed our search to less than 10,000 people.
Hood River, Oregon
Hood River is about an hour’s drive from Portland and has a population of 8,000. It is the gateway to Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area and Oregon Wine Country. Agricultural and outdoor adventure jobs are typical but don’t always result in a high cost of living in Hood River. The median home listing price is $672,000. Living here costs 28% more than the national average. Hood River’s schools have above-average grades.
Whitefish has 9,225 residents who enjoy world-class skiing, fly fishing, and access to Glacier National Park. It has a similar cost of living to Hood River and has the second-best public high school in the state. But real estate is costly. Expect to pay $1.4 million for a home in Whitefish.
Bar Harbor, Maine
This historic tourist town of nearly 3,000 people is the gateway to Acadia National Park. While you may have to deal with park visitors, it’s a quiet and safe neighborhood with great schools. The city also offers excellent restaurants and great nightlife. With this in mind, real estate prices are reasonable for the quality of life.
If you’re looking for a quaint but affordable town, Petoskey might be for you. Located on the shores of Lake Michigan, the city has 5,808 residents. It is home to the Hemingway Hangout and Petoskey State Park Beach. Although the median household income of $58,197 is lower than the national average of $67,521, it is affordable. The cost of living is 10% lower than the national average, and the median home listing price is $325,000.
This Nebraska city is located on the Missouri River and has a population of about 7,500. But it exploded during the annual AppleJack festival, which drew between 60,000 and 80,000 people. The rest is spent hunting, golfing, bird watching, and rodeo. Unfortunately, high-paying jobs are rare. But the cost of living is 19% lower than the national average. Housing costs are 51% lower than the national average. The average home is listed at $156,000, or $90 per square foot.