Wonder what it’s like to live in Washington State? Washington is attracting lots of attention to the Pacific Northwest. In fact, record numbers of millennials are putting roots down in Seattle which is home to about 60 percent of the state’s population. There are many reasons for this and an equally diverse landscape to explore.
Washington leads in eco-friendliness as one of the top 5 states with the highest consumption of green energy. As a major agricultural producer of cherries and apples, it boasts one of the best soil qualities in the nation. The terrain and natural beauty make it an outdoor enthusiast’s dream too.
Beaches, Mountains and More
In terms of weather, the Cascade Mountains carve Washington State into Eastern and Western sections. To the east, you’ll find wine country and rolling hills. To the west, more cities (Seattle, Tacoma, Olympia, Bellingham, Vancouver), marine shoreline and mountains that reminds you the Glaciers were there first.
Either way, there’s a laid-back vibe that doesn’t surprise you since Washington’s one of the safest states to live in. People here are motivated to hike Mount Rainier, whale watch, bike, go camping, or spend a day on the lake. It’s no wonder that the American League of Bicyclists awarded Washington first place: Most Bicycle Friendly State.
Jobs and Growth
With a thriving job market, the state of Washington also has a corporate side. Here you’ll find Fortune 500 companies like Microsoft, Costco, Amazon, Paccar and your corner café icon, Starbucks. Furthermore, reports point to an overall 74.27% rate of start-up growth (Kauffman Index). While you won’t pay personal income tax, sales tax is high 6.5% so make sure to factor that into a budget.
3 of the Best Places to Live in Washington State
Here are several cities in Washington State each of which has numerous neighborhoods to choose from depending on what your needs are.
Seattle City, Washington is the 6th fastest -growing city in the nation – outpacing the Big Apple and California. With a population of 724,745, the Emerald City is great for staying fit. Professionals are also drawn to the entrepreneurial culture. On your time off, head to the Space Needle and Chihuly Garden and Glass or check out the panoramic views from the Smith Tower. The city is also known for its culture, highly educated residents, public schools, food and architecture. Niche ranks South Lake Union, Westlake and Belltown some of the best neighborhood choices for millennials.
- Median annual home value (Census 2017): $537,800
Redmond City, WA
East of Seattle, the suburb of Redmond City with its 64,291 residents ranks as the best suburb to live in Washington State. Known for excellent public schools, the area attracts both families and young professionals. Plus, the city is gearing up for the arrival of four new light rail stations which will connect it to downtown, Bellevue, Seattle and the rest of the area. You can also keep your eye out for new construction as the city continues its development of Overlake Village.
- Median annual home value (Census 2017): $579,400
If you are specifically looking at the quality of schools for your kids, Bellevue City, Washington ranks third in the nation. With a population of 127,887, the suburb stands out as one of the best cities to raise a family and ranks in the top ten for outdoor activities. Here you’ll access the conveniences of city life plus you’ll be close to hiking or the beach depending on which way you drive. Prepare to scan 15 neighborhoods such as Beaux Art Village, Cougar Mountain and Somerset.
- Median annual home value (Census 2017): $665,700