Moving to St. Louis? 13 Reasons Why it's the City for the Next Century

Moving to St. Louis? 13 Reasons Why it's the City for the Next Century

The internet is filled with articles about fun things to do in almost every city in the United States. We could tell you all about what makes St. Louis great—from the Arch to gooey butter cake to the free zoo to our beloved Cardinals and Blues—but that’s been done. If you’re thinking of moving here, you don’t need another “best of” article. Let’s talk about what it’s like to really live in or near The Lou. 

The appeal of St. Louis boils down to livability. The city and surrounding area are affordable, accessible, and on track to remain one of the most desirable places to live for years to come. We’ve compiled a list of non-touristy reasons why you’ll want to call St. Louis home.

A Little Bit About St. Louis Geography

Many newcomers to St. Louis are surprised to find out how compact the actual city is. The city limits have a population of around 300,000. The St. Louis region, however, consists of about 100 different municipalities and 2 million people. So some people may use the name “St. Louis” when they’re in fact talking about the neighboring communities of Clayton, Shrewsbury, or Richmond Heights. 

Part of what makes the St. Louis region so great is that there is something for everyone. City neighborhoods and suburbs run the gamut of prices and lifestyles. Once you take a look at our 13 reasons why St. Louis is right for you, follow it up with our article Where to Live Near St. Louis, MO. It gives a rundown of places to buy a home based on what’s most important to you and your family.

1. Big Business Opportunities

St. Louis’ location in the Midwest, and in fact smack dab in the middle of the United States makes it a favored location for many corporate headquarters. Fortune 500 companies such as Centene, Emerson Electric, Edward Jones, and Peabody Energy all call St. Louis home. Other heavy hitters like Express Scripts, Nestle Purina, Anheuser Busch InBev, as well as the Department of Defense’s future National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, offer loads of employment and nearby economic opportunities.

2. Tech Startups

St. Louis is a boomtown for entrepreneurial startups, particularly in tech. It even earned a spot on Forbes’ Top 10 Rising Cities for Startups list in 2018. Collaborative coworking centers like CIC (Cortex), NexCore, Nebula, and T-Rex dot the area, making it possible for some of the best and brightest in the tech industry (and those that support them) to live and work here.

3. Medical Mecca

St. Louis’ many hospitals not only present job opportunities, but also provide some of the best medical care in the country. Five major hospital systems are represented by dozens of hospitals and two University Medical Centers. Whether looking for work in the medical field, or in the event that a family member needs medical treatment, St. Louis is the place to be. 

4. Higher Education

Nationally recognized Universities draw people from around the world, making St. Louis a destination for students and educators alike. Beautiful campuses provide a college-town feel within a big city. Academic institutions in the area employ thousands of residents while giving local students a top-notch education close to home. There are some great choices for kids who want to live with Mom and Dad or be home every weekend.

5. Getting Around

It’s true that St. Louis does not boast the same type of intricate public transit system as metropolitan locations like New York, Boston, or Chicago. But, to compensate, the city does have a network of highways that make it super easy to get around by car, along with plentiful, inexpensive parking once you get where you’re going. This has been an especially important feature of the city with the COVID-19 pandemic, which made travel via mass transit (bus, train) much less desirable. The extensive system of highways and roads also makes it easier for delivery services such as Uber Eats, Door Dash, and Instacart to offer convenient services for those that want to stay at home.

6. Traffic

But doesn’t all that car travel lead to some pretty nasty traffic? Not really. In fact, some St. Louis natives refer  to St. Louis as “the 20-minute city,” meaning you can get just about anywhere within 20 minutes. And while that might be a slight exaggeration, it is true that the region ranks below the national average for commute times. Transplants from metropolitan areas like New York and L.A. are pleasantly surprised to find that the traffic is manageable at just about any time of the day. And, if you really don’t want to deal with traffic, rideshare services like Lyft and Uber have a strong presence here.

7. Getting Away

When it’s time to travel further than just across town, there’s St. Louis Lambert International Airport. Not only is it a major hub for Southwest Airlines it’s easy to get to, inexpensive to park, and quick to get around. Compared to most other international airports, travelers will find refreshingly short TSA lines and quick walks from one terminal to another.

8. Cost of Living

Unlike other cities, St. Louis is not ridiculously expensive, even though it boasts quality homes, great school systems, and a lot of events and amenities for residents. While houses run from economical to extravagant, according to Zillow, median home prices are hovering at around $180,000 (as of this writing). The job market is diverse and it’s affordable to live and play here. 

9. Homes

St. Louis city neighborhoods and suburbs come in all shapes and sizes. Every budget will find a suitable place to live, in a convenient location, and often with a yard. That’s something that’s almost unheard of in other cities, especially for singles, self-employed creatives, and young families looking for a first home

10. Free Stuff

The St. Louis Zoo, The Gateway Arch, Grant’s Farm, and St. Louis Science Center are just some of the free things to do in and around the city. And they’re not just for tourists but are regularly enjoyed by residents too. There are parks large and small everywhere in the region. The piece de resistance is Forest Park, which, at 1,400 acres, is bigger than New York’s Central Park. Living in St. Louis means having all of this at your fingertips, not to mention some fantastic places to take relatives when they visit.

11. Entertainment

Being a modest-sized city does not mean that St. Louis doesn’t have a big-time entertainment scene. Indoor and outdoor venues are stops on national tours for musicians of every genre. Summertime is a time for festivals, fairs, and fireworks. St. Louis has its own symphony orchestra as well as The Fox Theater, the Muny, and other repertory theaters that present straight-from-broadway shows. Add to that a vibrant live comedy and music scene in bars and clubs throughout the city, and there’s never a weekend without something to do.

12. The Food Scene

Yes, you’ll find St. Louis style barbeque here, as well as local delicacies like toasted ravioli and the gooey butter cake we mentioned before. But St. Louis has a diverse ethnic food scene as well as cutting-edge restaurants boasting Michelin stars. You won’t go hungry in St. Louis—or thirsty. Sure, Budweiser ruled the city for decades, but these days the craft beer scene is thriving. It’s something of a beer lovers paradise, with breweries like 4 Hands, Urban Chestnut, Schlafly, and Civil Life making a name for themselves here and across the country. 

13. Experiences

People want work/life balance wherever they live, and that means enjoying experiences with family and friends. No matter your lifestyle or tastes, St. Louis has the experience to fit the bill. A stroll on the Arch grounds along the riverfront is an experience that everyone must have at least once. There are also riverboat cruises and casinos along the Mississippi and Missouri rivers. Historical river towns are great for antiquing. Take a short drive outside of the city and you’ll find horse farms, wineries, and river float trips. In the winter visit, Hidden Valley Ski Resort. That’s right. You can even ski and snowboard here in the Midwest! 

Relocating to St. Louis

St. Louis is filled with people from all over the country and around the world, along with loyal life-long residents. They’ve chosen to make a home here because it is a friendly, affordable, livable place to settle. We’ve come up with 13 reasons, and we didn’t even have to mention sports! 

If you are considering relocating to St. Louis or the surrounding area, you’ll need a tried and true real estate professional. Call our team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties. We’ll help you get started with your house hunt.

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