City Guide / Seattle

Moving to Seattle? Here Are 14 Things to Consider

By Landing | Apr 23, 2024
Broad view of Seattle with a mountain on the background

If you’re thinking about moving to Seattle, here are 14 things to consider before calling the Emerald City home.

As soon as you land in Seattle, you’ll understand its reputation as “The Emerald City” faster than you can order your first flat white. The city’s lush green landscapes, abundant public parks, and surrounding forests create a vibrant green hue, regardless of the season. 

Built around the Puget Sound and Lake Washington, Seattle is an oasis for city dwellers who yearn for a dose of nature.  

And it isn’t just nature that makes Seattle stand out among other American cities. The Pacific Northwest city has a booming tech economy, legendary arts community, and food and drink scene worth exploring. 

If you’re considering a move to Seattle, Landing has you covered. Here are all the things to know before moving to Seattle.

Is Seattle a Good Place to Live? 

Choosing the “right” place to live is all a matter of perspective. Like any other city, living in Seattle has pros and cons

For some, the Pacific Northwest’s overcast afternoons and frequent rain are the perfect excuse to peruse Seattle’s bookstores and become a regular at a neighborhood coffee shop. But it’s not all books and cappuccinos. Seattleites don’t let the lack of vitamin D spoil a stroll through public parks, kayaking in the Puget Sound, or a hike in the surrounding Seattle area.  

If you accept a rainy city as a trade-off to Seattle living, its walkable neighborhoods have all the amenities you need. Digital nomads have access to an innovative tech economy with plenty of meetups and coworking spaces to build community. Creatives naturally fit in with the galleries, museums, and a legendary music scene. And a low unemployment rate and high minimum wage can help offset Seattle’s cost of living

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Why Move to Seattle: Here’s 4 Reasons

If you’re debating the pros and cons of living in Seattle and still asking yourself, “Should I move to Seattle?”, we have some enticing benefits for you to consider. 

Here are 4 of our favorite reasons to move to Seattle. 

1. There’s So Much To Do

People visiting Pike Place Market during the day

Once you’ve visited the Space Needle, Pike Place Market, and everything else on your Seattle Bucket list, the fun really begins. Seattle is full of walkable neighborhoods that all have something unique to offer. From Capitol Hill’s inclusive LGBTQIA+ and arts communities, breweries that line Ballard and Fremont, or more than 500 acres of greenery in Discovery Park, there’s no shortage of restaurants, activities, and things to do.

2. A Thriving Job Market

Rows of desks with multiple people working on them with their computers.

The Emerald City has a long-standing tradition for innovation, with a dynamic job market that stretches across technology, healthcare, and aerospace. 

Seattle is home to industry giants like Starbucks, Microsoft, and Boeing, to name a few. And the robust job market is complemented by a culture of entrepreneurship and a strong startup ecosystem. Digital nomads and self-starters will find themselves among established professionals and others looking to bring their ideas to market.

3. The Great Outdoors

A lake in the middle of a green field full of trees and in the background a white mountain

It’s worth repeating: The Emerald City is a nature lover’s dream. Surrounded by water, mountains, and evergreen forests, the city has no shortage of outdoor activities. You can hike Mount Rainier National Park, paddleboard in Lake Union or Ballard Locks, or hop a ferry to the nearby San Juan Islands. And if you don’t feel like leaving the city, most Seattleites live within a 10-minute walk of a public park. 

4. Strong Sense of Community

Two men hugging each other.

If you ask a local what living in Seattle is like, they might mention the “Seattle Freeze.” Seattleites have a reputation for being as cold as the weather. It might take you a minute to find your crowd in this city.

But once you thaw them off, you’ll discover an inclusive, welcoming spirit. The city’s “live and let live” attitude creates a space where everyone finds a niche, regardless of their quirks or interests. There are many strong communities you can warm up to, with plenty of festivals, farmers’ markets, and clubs to strengthen your sense of belonging. 

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10 Things to Know Before Moving to Seattle

Here’s what to know before moving to Seattle, including practical advice and cultural insights to make your move smooth. Be sure to add them to your go-to guide to moving to Seattle

1. Coffee Culture Reigns Supreme

Coffee machine being used, surrounded by steam.

The original Starbucks isn’t the only coffee shop in town. Seattleites pride themselves on the abundance of independent coffee shops and roasters. Whether you’re meeting with a coworker or friend or need a temporary office, you can always count on a quality cup of coffee

2. The City of Hills

A man walking a dog in one of Seattle's hilly streets.
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Prepare yourself for Seattle’s challenging topography. Seattle’s famous seven hills don’t just add to the city’s natural beauty — they make it a challenge to get around on foot or bicycle. Luckily, you can skip leg day at the gym. 

3. Traffic Troubles

Cars stuck at a traffic jam

Seattle’s traffic is notorious. A growing population and geographical constraints pose big challenges to transport infrastructure. Be prepared for time-consuming congestion, especially during rush hour. 

4. Sustainability is a Way of Life

A man and a woman planting plants into a vertical garden

Eco-conscious living is the norm. Seattleites take green initiatives seriously, from recycling programs to zero-emission vehicle standards and carbon-free hydroelectricity. 

5. It’s the Pacific Northwest’s Tech Hub

Woman using VR Oculus glasses

Seattle’s tech workers are consistently rated as the most competitive tech workers in the country, edging ahead of Silicon Valley and Austin. Although the competition is stiff, Seattle is the place to build connections in the tech sector. 

6. It’s expensive

Two hands holding a stack of 100 dollar bills

Seattle is one of the country’s most desirable places to live. It’s also one of the most expensive U.S. cities. That’s because the city’s rapid growth has caused a surge in prices. While housing costs are less expensive than San Francisco and Los Angeles, food and transport costs compete with New York City. Luckily, no state income tax and high minimum wage help offset extra costs. 

7. Lots of Indoor Activities

Man rock-climbing indoors
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If the rain and cloudy weather keep you from enjoying the great outdoors, don’t worry. You’ll find diverse indoor physical activities, including ice sports, rock climbing clubs, and indoor running tracks. Rain or shine, you’ll never have an excuse not to exercise. 

8. A City of Book Nerds

Young girl checking out books at a book shop

UNESCO named Seattle a “City of Literature.” The city is full of independent bookstores, publishing houses, and professional writers. 

The city also supports literary events and festivals that promote local and international writers, like the Seattle Arts and Lectures series, writers’ reads, and book signings. The Seattle library even offers a book group DIY toolkit to build your own book club. 

9. A Foodie’s Dream

Food signs at the Public Market Center

Access to fresh produce, artisan goods, and a long coastline make Seattle an obvious choice for a foodie’s paradise. Seattle wins for casual dining, plenty of diversity (particularly East Asian cuisine), and local brews and wine. 

10. A Progressive Pulse

Girl friends pilling their hands together

It makes sense that a green oasis would also house progressive politics. Seattle has long championed LGBTQIA+ rights, environmental stewardship, and economic equality, creating a welcoming environment for diverse communities and forward-thinking initiatives. 

The 3 Best Neighborhoods in Seattle

Whether you’re looking for waterfront views, access to green spaces, or vibrant urban life, there’s no shortage of great Seattle neighborhoods to choose from. Here are the best places to live in Seattle. 

1. Capitol Hill

Broad overview of Capitol Hill, Seattle
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Capitol Hill is the epitome of Seattle’s dynamic and diverse culture. Its history of arts, music, and dining culture makes it a haven for foodies and creatives. Plus, it’s an easy commute to downtown Seattle and well-connected to other Seattle neighborhoods on public transportation. Landing has several apartments in Capitol Hill that let you enjoy the heart of Seattle’s social scene. 

2. Ballard 

A picture of Ballard's port with houses on the edge
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Sunset Hills, Whittier Heights, and Phinney Ridge are just a few sub-neighborhoods in Ballard, a vast neighborhood with waterfront views, boutique shops, and green parks. If you’re looking for a Seattle neighborhood that has all the amenities in one spot, Landing has several apartments in Ballard to choose from. 

3. Bellevue 

Aerial view of Bellevieu neighborhood with the mountains in the background
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If you don’t need a view of the Space Needle, Bellevue is a great Seattle neighborhood for nature lovers. It’s further from the Seattle center, but it has prime views of Lake Washington and easy access to plenty of walking trails. If you’re looking for a family-friendly Seattle neighborhood, Landing has fully furnished apartments in Bellevue

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

Have we given you enough reasons to consider moving to Seattle? All you have to worry about is packing a good jacket and reading our moving to Seattle guide. Landing has the rest covered with fully furnished, flexible apartment rentals available all over the city. Become a member today.