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Living in Seattle: A Moving Guide

Seattle skyline in golden hour

Seattle, the Emerald City, and the Pacific NW is a fantastic place to live! Sure, it rains sometimes, but that’s why we have so many trees and lush green vegetation year-round! When the sun shines, it reveals majestic mountains, beaches, sapphire lakes, parks, and outdoor activities for the city folk to come out and play in the great outdoors.

Of course, we can’t forget about coffee, farmers’ markets, fresh seafood, world-class restaurants, and the music& art options− everything that makes up the fabric of the city’s rich culture.

This is your new home, and this page is your primer to moving to Seattle. Let’s get started.

Cost of Living

Living in Seattle isn’t necessarily cheap when compared with smaller cities in the United States. In fact, the cost of living here is about 24 percent higher than your average American city, according to SmartAsset. However, our living costs are offset by an extremely strong, diversified economy offering higher wages in many sectors.

Home Prices and Rental Rates

The crown for the most expensive real estate in the United States still belongs to San Francisco. According to Zillow, the median price of homes in Seattle is $726,000.

There are, however, many neighborhoods and areas that offer the opportunity for lower-priced homes. For example, Bothell, Mill Creek, Lynnwood, Kenmore, Issaquah Highlands, etc. can offer alternatives for buyers seeking more affordable alternatives.

Voting in Seattle

Now that you’ll be living in Seattle, you should consider exercising your civic right to vote here (provided you are U.S. citizen). Politics plays an important role in the local culture, and Seattleites tend to be vocal and active in the political scene.

Registering as a voter in Seattle is convenient. You can fill up and submit the form online or just head to a county elections department to apply in person. You can find the corresponding requirements here. Are you unsure whether you’re eligible to vote in Seattle? You can find information about eligibility here.

Best Neighborhoods in the City

Seattle has a great number of fantastic communities. Where you should move ultimately depends on your needs, priorities, and preferences.

If you want to live close to Downtown Seattle, places such as Belltown and Capitol Hill are popular choices. Meanwhile, if family-friendly living is the most important goal, you may want to consider neighborhoods like Magnolia, Greenwood, Green Lake, and West Seattle.

Living outside Seattle but still within the Greater Seattle area (i.e. Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Bothell, Edmonds, Mill Creek, etc.) are also increasingly popular choices. As mentioned earlier and in other articles, home prices in the Greater Seattle area have been increasing for many years in this strong economy.

Here are the 25 best neighborhoods in Seattle according to Seattle Met.

Getting In and Around Seattle

If you’re living close to Downtown Seattle, you can get away with not owning a car. The best way to get around is through the local bus system, which has numerous stops in Seattle, King and Snohomish County. You can even download an app to track your bus.

Link light rail is a rapid transit system that is continually expanding throughout the Seattle area.

If you are moving to one of Seattle’s outlying neighborhoods, the most convenient way to get around is with a private vehicle. Parking in downtown Seattle, however, can be challenging. You also have to register your car at the local DMV and get a driver’s license.

Seattle is fast becoming a bike-friendly city. There are many dedicated bike lanes scattered throughout the metro and the community is strong. This can be a great option if you want to keep trim and lessen your carbon footprint at the same time.

Moving in with Pets

In Seattle, dogs and cats are not just pets− they’re family. If you’re moving in with a furry friend or two, take note that you need to register them with the local government. This licensing rule covers not just cats and dogs, but potbellied pigs and miniature goats as well. You can find more information about the licensing and related fees here.

Once you’ve registered your pets, you will find plenty of spaces in Seattle that cater to your four-legged companions. Green spaces and parks abound, as well as pet-friendly restaurants and establishments.

Moving to Seattle

You will never regret moving to Seattle and the Pacific NW! Learn more about living in Seattle, WA by checking my life in Seattle resource page. You can also connect with me today at mary(at)marypong(dotted)com or 425-829-3417 for more information.