Spokane Relocation Guide

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Spokane Relocation Guide

Here’s all you need to know about moving to Spokane. If you’re still considering relocating to Spokane and feel undecided, then check this post out: 12 Reasons to Relocate to Spokane.

1) The best kept secret

Spokane has long held the reputation of being a hidden gem in the Pacific Northwest. It’s smaller than Seattle and Portland, but offers all of the same amenities you could want or need.

The phrase we have for people that move to Spokane from Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, and Los Angeles is “Tech Refugees.” As I write, we are in the middle of being discovered. In 10 years, Spokane will be a very different place from many perspectives, not the least of which being increased diversity.

From a financial perspective, Spokane is peering up a trend line of significant growth. Now’s the time to buy.

2) Choose the right city in the metro to live in

If you’re into cities that have real downtowns and a degree of historic value, then there are only two to choose from in metro Spokane, and the other is Ceour d’Alene, Idaho. (For a complete ranking of the metro’s cities, check out Metro Spokane Places to Live.)

Spokane and Coeur d'Alene are the metro's central cities.
Downtown Spokane, WA skyline with the Steamplant
Spokane serves an unusually large economic region. As a result, its downtown is the most dynamic urban environment for miles around. (Photo by Timothy Eberly)
View of the Coeur d'Alene Resort from Tubbs Hill
The sandy beaches and cool blue waters of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, are only a 40 minute drive from downtown Spokane. Coeur d’Alene is resort town living at its best — water fun in the summer and skiing in the winter. (Photo courtesy of Jason Buscema)

3) The basics: A broad view of Spokane neighborhoods and general price points

General prices of homes in Spokane
Although it doesn't capture the smaller neighborhoods, this map provides an overall sense of Spokane's neighborhoods and the costs to live in them.

4) The details: Spokane’s best neighborhoods ranked and rated with pictures and maps

Below are the best neighborhoods in Spokane. If you’re moving to Spokane, we have all sorts of great neighborhoods that will fit your lifestyle. If you’re interested, SpokanePlanner ranks all Spokane neighborhoods, from top to bottom, on the Ranking All Spokane Neighborhoods page. For Spokane’s best neighborhoods, many are so small you won’t find them on the map above. Others encompass parts of broader level neighborhood geographies, like the South Hill. They are all, however, very distinct places and create the soul of Spokane, as follows:

#20 Vinegar Flats

#19 Garland Neighborhood

#18 Emerson / Garfield

#17 Corbin Park

#16 Lower South Hill

#15 Comstock Neighborhood

#14 Manito Country Club

#13 Medical District

#12 North Bank

#11 High Drive

#10 University District

#9 Indian Canyon Neighborhood

#8 Lincoln Park / Altamont

#7 Audubon / Downriver

#6 South Perry Neighborhood

#5 Peaceful Valley

#4 West Central / Kendall Yards

#3 Downtown

#2 The South Hill

#1 Browne’s Addition

5) Up and coming neighborhoods where great homes are still affordable and investment opportunities abound

The map below illustrates the five neighborhoods in Spokane that are on the up-swing. Among them, the safest (and most kid-friendly) are Garland, the U-District, and West Central. Emerson/Garfield is a tweener but it’s also the neighborhood with the largest stock of historic homes. Want a big Victorian for around around $180k? Emerson/Garfield has plenty to choose from.

Finally, Chief Garry is the most rugged neighborhood on this list and, therefore, less family friendly. However, recent beautification improvements to the nearest commercial corridor, Sprague Avenue, as well as a couple large scale private sector commercial projects within the neighborhood have turned the market in what was traditionally a rough part of town. If you’re without children, moving to Spokane, and can weather a few years of neighborhood transition from bad to good, Chief Garry neighborhood is absurdly affordable (around $125k per home), which means your return on investment has great potential.

Spokane's Best Investment Neighborhoods
The five neighborhoods above represent the next phase of Spokane's transition into a 21st century city.

6) Best shopping and pub districts

Spokane's food scene punches above its weight class. On par with far larger markets, our menu will satisfy any palate.

7) Moving to Spokane: How to fit in with the locals

  • Get a Whammy burger at Dick’s Drive In and dip it in tartar sauce while you eat.
  • Become an expert in all things tartar sauce and decide who serves the best stuff.
  • Figure out which locally brewed IPA you like best.
  • Learn to speak Zags basketball.
  • Participate in our marquee annual events (at least once): Bloomsday and Hoopfest.
  • Participate in our cool artsy/hipster events (at least once): Terrain and Bazaar.

8) Walk Tubb’s Hill

Coeur d’Alene is Spokane’s little sister, and the best way to get to know her is to walk Tubb’s Hill, which is a conserved natural area right in the middle of downtown. The loop around Tubb’s Hill is generally traversable for all ages. At about 2.5 miles long, the trail provides a bounty of discoveries with sandy beaches, an array of bio diversity, and abundant wildlife. As result, Tubb’s Hill is among the best urban natural areas in the nation.

If you’re feeling particularity energetic, clime to the top for an amazing view of Ceour d’Alene.

If you’re looking for a broader scope of metro Spokane places to live, then peep these regional city rankings:

#29 Dalton Gardens, Idaho

#28 State Line City, Idaho

#27 Huetter, Idaho

#26 Athol, Idaho

#25 Worley, Idaho

#24 Waverly, Washington

#23 Latah, Washington

#22 Spangle, Washington

#21 Airway Heights, Washington

#20 Hauser, Idaho

#19 Deer Park, Washington

#18 Fairfield, Washington

#17 Spokane Valley, Washington

#16 Hayden, Idaho

#15 Post Falls, Idaho

#14 Twin Lakes, Idaho

#13 Rockford, Washington

#12 Medical Lake, Washington

#11 Rathdrum, Idaho

#10 Liberty Lake, Washington

#9 Fernan Lake Village, Idaho

#8 Tekoa, Washington

#7 Harrison, Idaho

#6 Cheney, Washington

#5 Spirit Lake, Idaho

#4 Hayden Lake, Idaho

#3 Millwood, Washington

#2 Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

#1 Spokane, Washington

(Featured photo courtesy of Timothy Eberly on Unsplash)

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