Key Highlights

  • Curbed just released its FIRST listed rankings of the 10 best cities to move to right now.
  • Curbed totaled several criteria such as job opportunities, walkability and housing costs to define the essential trait called livability

In this first-ever Curbed list of the 10 best cities to move to right now in the US, we’ll cover 5 of the 10 best cities to move to in Part I of this series. Part II of this series will cover the remaining best cities to move to as determined by Curbed.  

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Curbed used the following criteria to determine the 10 best cities to move to:

  • walkability
  • housing costs
  • job opportunities
  • park access
  • diversity

Adding up the scores of all these criteria gave Curbed the definition of which cities had the highest scored trait of livability.

Curbed sees all 10 cities as great alternatives to the highly expensive two coasts of the country.

  1. Arlington VA – a booming, upscale suburb buoyed by Amazon’s choice to be the company’s HQ2.
    1. Population: 396.394
    2. Median home price: $729,477
    3. Median rent price @ 2 bedroom unit – $2,123/month
    4. Proximity to Washington DC
      1. 20 minute walk to nearly any place
      2. A happening, diverse restaurant scene
  • Cultural diversity
  1. Amazon’s massive redevelopment effort in Arlington’s Crystal City neighborhood
    1. An extension of DC’s metro line
    2. The Virginia Tech Innovation Center in nearby Alexandria is piggy-backing on Amazon’s influx of capital
  2. Hot neighborhoods include Dimmit Hills, Herndon and Clarendon
  3. A 16-mile Arlington Loop bike trail
  4. A wealth of national monuments and memorials
  1. Boise ID – great for outdoor lovers and new business ventures
    1. Population: 226,570
    2. Median home price – $326,789
    3. Median rent price @ 2 bedroom unit – $950/month
    4. Boise became the nationally renowned relocation destination in the last decade
      1. Gorgeous, high desert, Boise River, often called the City of Trees
      2. Between 2013-2018, population increased 3 times the national average
  • Explosive economy especially in tech and health care
  1. Watch the downtown area for new construction and restoration projects plus a potential trolley service
  2. Hot neighborhoods include the North End (historic homes), Boise Bench (hip shops and easy access to outdoor adventures and Meridian (fast growing suburb)
  3. Central Idaho is the country’s only certified dark sky preserve
  1. Charlotte NC
    1. Population: 859,035
    2. Median home price – $248,811
    3. Median rent price @ 2 bedroom unit – $1,154/month
    4. The “Queen City” was recently christened “Millennial Boomtown”
      1. City is thriving and on a pace to add 9,000+ apartment units this year
      2. Epicenter of rapid regional expansion with almost 50,000 new apartment units
  • Rather than sprawling, city is densifying and diversifying with $800M in new development
  1. City focuses on walkable urbanism
  1. Hot neighborhoods include Plaza Midwood (mile from downtown with tree-lined areas and a hipster vib), Davidson (charm of a small, lakefront college town that 20 miles from the city) and Belmont and Optimist Park
  2. Look for greenway development and restoration projects
  1. Dallas TX
    1. Population: 1,341,100
    2. Median home price – $219,173
    3. Median rent price @2 bedroom unit – $1,137/month
    4. City’s current focus on adding density, not sprawl
      1. Lower cost of living is enticing relocators
      2. City moving towards walk-able, urban development
    5. City has led the nation in multi-family construction the last 6 years with more multi-family development coming
    6. Hot neighborhoods include Frisco (the most active apartment market in the region), Deep Elam (long time center of music scene and most walkable), M-Streets and Vickery (starter-sized homes, quiet, family friendly), Allen (family friendly, football crazy), the Pritzker District (architecturally rich buildings and homes)
    7. Caddo Lake State Park is a great day-trip
  2. Denver CO – growing urbanism fueling mountain metro renaissance
    1. Population: 619,968
    2. Median home price – $451,153
    3. Median rent price @ 2 bedroom – $1,353/month
    4. Unbeatable job opportunities
    5. Significant growth in tech jobs with office rents being one third the price of Silicon Valley
    6. Major infrastructure development keeping pace with influx of people
    7. Great lifestyle perks
    8. Hot neighborhoods include Sloan’s Lake Five Points (one-time “Harlem of the West” with galleries and hip music venues close to downtown), Arvada (historic district with an easy light-rail connection to Denver
    9. Unbeatable day trips to Breckenridge, Boulder and Colorado Springs


Thanks to Curbed’s Patrick Sisson for source data.

Also read: Three Satellite Cities Outshining Their Bigger Neighbors, Big Bargains in the Hamptons What the Imbalance of Supply & Demand Looks Like


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