As a Tacoma native and Western Washington University alum, I’ve lived all along the I-5 corridor. As soon as I graduated college, I was bound and determined to move out of my parents’ house, so I moved to Seattle with big dreams of someday owning a home up there. After living in this major metropolitan city for 8 years, my husband and I began investigating different opportunities to invest our hard-earned money, and buying a home was the obvious choice.
Where we decided to move depended on these 3 factors:
- AffordabilityWe both agreed that we didn’t want to purchase a property that would require a ton of renovations, and we also wanted at least a small yard for our pup. Our dreams of owning a home in Seattle proper were instantly crushed once we determined our desired price range and started looking around in the neighborhoods we liked. So, I extended our search criteria to include Tacoma. Not only could we buy a turn-key home in a desirable area within our budget, but we could also have a sizeable yard! Homes are simply a better value in Pierce County, and property taxes are also considerably lower than King County.
During my time in Queen Anne and Ballard, I enjoyed the lively nightlife and access to restaurants and entertainment at every corner. When considering moving down south, I felt a slight twinge of panic at the thought of giving up living so close to local boutiques, tasty treats, and nights out on the town. I was raised in University Place, so I had an image of what the local scene was—but boy, was I wrong.
The City of Destiny has grown significantly in recent years, and the local culture is thriving. Since moving into our home in Tacoma, I still haven’t dined at all of the new restaurants because I’ve been visiting some of the long-time favorites like Indochine Asian Dining Lounge, The Harvester, and Cook’s Tavern. One of my favorite new restaurants is Indo Asian Street Eatery- if you haven’t been there yet do yourself a favor and check it out. I’ve also explored exhibits at the Tacoma Art Museum (TAM), brought my little one to the Children’s Museum of Tacoma, and attended multiple farmers markets at Point Ruston and Proctor District. They even have a Tacoma Night Market each month filled with local vendors and food trucks galore.
- CommunityMoving back home had its obvious perks of being close to my extended family, especially once we decided to grow our family. However, even if you are not from Tacoma, people actually smile at you when you walk down the street and there is a high likelihood that you’ll see a few familiar faces after frequenting the same brewhouses or local coffeeshops. Tacoma has a small town feel that is comforting and provides a nest to build upon. There is also a plethora of opportunities to get involved with your local neighborhood. For example, you can attend the Turkey Trot in Proctor, check out Pod Works (a club designed for entrepreneurial moms), or volunteer at one of the many organizations working to make a difference in our community.
If you’re considering taking the leap to get more bang for your buck, let’s chat about the various neighborhoods and where you could start your search. I would even make the trip up north to buy you a coffee—as long as we can go to Café Vita or Ballard Coffee Works! 😉