Seattle is the home of aerospace giant Boeing and a growing number of high-tech employers. That’s why it had the third-highest annualized growth rate among large U.S. cities in 2020. But what is it like to live here? Here’s an overview of what to expect when living in downtown Seattle.
Living In Downtown Seattle
The Real Estate Prices Are High Unless You’re from Silicon Valley
Silicon Valley’s real estate prices are so high that people pay hundreds of dollars a month to sleep in a box or share a bunk bed in a room with six other people. This is one reason why Big Tech firms have been building offices in Seattle and expanding outside of Silicon Valley. This has led to an influx of high paying jobs in the Seattle area. Unfortunately, it has also driven up downtown Seattle real estate prices. The average home costs around eight hundred thousand dollars, three to four times the national average. But that’s a bargain compared to the 1.5-million-dollar price tag for a home in San Francisco. Seattle’s real estate appreciation will continue for the foreseeable future, because it faces the same literal constraints as San Francisco – ocean on one side, mountains on the other.
It Is a Convenient Lifestyle as Long as You Don’t Have Kids
Seattle is a densely built urban city. You can walk, bike or take public transit almost anywhere. There is almost certainly a restaurant, bar or entertainment venue nearby. The only thing really missing is schools. There are no public schools in downtown Seattle, though private ones exist. There’s also a dearth of family friendly activities unless you’re going to museums and concerts. There are a few childcare options for young children catering to young families that haven’t left yet, but almost nothing is available for school aged children. That’s understandable given that the area is dominated by childless twenty-somethings and empty nesters, but it often forces young adults to leave when they have kids. After all, they have to drive the kids to school. And Seattle is terrible for car owners because there is no free parking and paid parking is expensive.
It Can Be Chaotic in Seattle
Seattle is a fast-moving modern city. The good news is that you can see brand new art and cutting-edge technology in the same place. The downside are protests that can disrupt your life, and turn unruly, such as when Antifa blocks roads for hours on end. This is aside from the constant construction and flow of tourists through the city. Seattle is relatively safe for a big city, protests aside, though the inner city has more crime. This is partially due to the number of criminals preying on tourists. Develop situational awareness, know where you are at all times, and know how to avoid potential trouble.
Your Escape from the City Is an Adventure
Many people leave downtown Seattle on the weekend. They may head to Puget Sound or Mount Rainier. If you enjoy snow sports, then Steven’s Pass is where you want to go. And all of these destinations are within a two-hour drive.
Final Thoughts on Living in Seattle
Living in Seattle is great for those of you who want a fast-paced, non kid-friendly city. The real estate prices are high and the things to do are plenty for the 20 some year olds.