The Queen City. Porkopolis. The Paris of America. Cincinnati is a dazzling place brimming with elegance and opportunity. On the one hand, it’s a thriving metropolis dotted by Fortune 500 companies and influential individuals. On the other hand, it is a humble Midwestern town at heart that still knows how to do things old school.
If you’ve grown tired of the Big Apple’s hectic 24/7 environment, Cincinnati offers a refreshing change of pace. Here’s your all-in-one guide to moving to the Queen City from the City of Dreams.
Brace Yourself for a Massive Cost of Living Change
Moving for the first time, there’s a high chance you’re going to experience culture shock. Things are super cheap here. To illustrate, a single restaurant meal in NYC can buy you two large ones in Cincinnati. Here’s an overview comparing costs in the two cities from bestplaces.net:
- Taking every expense into account, New York City is 121.3% more expensive than Cincinnati. Moreover, CIN is 16.4% cheaper than the U.S average.
- The primary factors to this whopping difference are home prices and housing costs.
- CIN’s median home price is only $144,300 compared to NYC’s $680,500. Meanwhile, the average rent in CIN is only $1,022 while it’s $3,628 in Manhattan, NY.
For other categories, NYC outprices CIN by 19.5% in groceries; utilities – 53.6%; transportation – 93.5%; healthcare – 31.9%; and misc. – 25.5%. Keep in mind that just because things are more affordable doesn’t mean the quality is bad. Cincinnati is one of the most beautiful cities in the country, thanks to its beautiful architecture, robust food scene, and eclectic neighborhoods.
The Weather Can Be Unpredictable
Sitting in the heart of America, Cincinnati gets hit by winds from all directions. Forecasts often get bamboozled by Ohio’s moody climate. If you don’t want your plans to be ruined, you better be prepared at all times. One big advantage you have as a New Yorker is your existing wardrobe. Bring all of your winter clothing with you. Note that winters here tend to be icy, windy, with mainly a fair amount of snow.
Meanwhile, summer never fails to bring joy and warmth to everyone. It’s as hot and humid as one would expect. Spring is beautiful with everything in full bloom, although you should expect some occasional drizzles here and there. As for fall, there’s not much to say except that the city transforms with some of the most beautiful fall foliage in the northern hemisphere.
Don’t Expect Too Much from the Economy
Just a heads up. Your salary is going to suffer significantly after you move. To be fair, it wouldn’t be equitable to compare a small city like Cincinnati to a finance giant like New York. Don’t worry. You can still find plenty of opportunities in the city. Just don’t expect the same number of zeroes as your paycheck in NYC.
While it’s not as high-paying as NYC, Cincinnati’s economy is diversified at the very least. You can still nurture a healthy career in finance. You can also branch out to other established industries, including manufacturing, retail, education, and healthcare.
It’s important to know that the unemployment rate is pretty high at 4.8% compared to the national average of 3.7%. Moreover, 27% of the population lives below the poverty line. Perhaps the only redeeming factor to these depressing stats is the taxes. Income and property taxes are half of what the government collects in NYC.
Best Places to Live in Cincinnati
While it’s not perfect, Cincinnati has a lot of great neighborhoods to call home. Of course, some areas are more appealing than others. To save you time hunting, here are the best neighborhoods to settle down.
- Mount Adams – Named after President John Quincy Adams, Mount Adams is a place of charm and historical beauty. You’ll love the brownstone homes huddled closely with plenty of trees to freshen up the surrounding air.
- Hyde Park – An upscale neighborhood, there’s lots to love about Hyde Park. You’ll appreciate how it brims with life and culture, thanks to the Hyde Park Square that is chock-full of shops and restaurants. The streets are well-kept, the people are friendly, and the crime rate is low. What more can you ask for?
- West Chester – Weirdly enough, West Chester is actually located north of the city. If you’re looking for an active neighborhood filled with an ample number of establishments and big-city amenities, this is the place to be. Here you’ll find malls, cafes, museums, and boutiques.
- Downtown Cincinnati – If you wish to be always at the center of all the action, Downtown won’t disappoint. Although relatively pricier than the rest of the city, you’ll get to enjoy several shopping districts, live music venues, a wild nightlife, and never-ending opportunities to meet new people.
- Pleasant Ridge – Nestled near the eastern quadrant, Pleasant Ridge is a vibrant up-and-coming business district. Its competitive housing rates and average proximity to Downtown never fail to attract young professionals.
Goodbye NYC, Hello Cincinnati!
There’s no doubt you’re going to miss a lot of things in NYC when moving to Cincinnati. However, you’ll eventually learn to love your new city and find the beauty in your new environment. Give it time. Enjoy the adventure and make the most out of the experience.