Moving to Ohio: Is Ohio a Good Place to Live? [2024]

Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati, the Three C's of Ohio

Thinking of moving to Ohio? The Buckeye State is one of the best places to live in the country, thanks to its affordable cost of living, ample employment opportunities, and impressive real estate market. Living in Ohio is more than just practical; it's exciting. Ohio's best cities are home to professional sports teams, rock 'n roll legacies, American history, and delicious foods you can't find anywhere else in the country. Ready to make yourself at home in Ohio? Here's everything you need to know first.

Top 3 Reasons to Move to Ohio

  • Ohio offers a lower cost of living, 11% below the national average, with affordable housing, utilities, and childcare.
  • Job opportunities in diverse industries contribute to Ohio's favorable unemployment rate, with significant growth in consulting, healthcare, and advanced manufacturing sectors.
  • Vibrant cities and the best small towns in Ohio make it easy for homebuyers to find everything from downtown condos to lakefront mansions.

Affordability and Cost of Living in Ohio

Ohio is a Cheap Place to Live

Moving to Ohio is easy on the wallet. The cost of living is 11% lower than the national average, and it boasts the ninth cheapest housing in the country. This means buying a home in Ohio is more accessible than the majority of other states. Moreover, the low-cost affordability extends to utilities and childcare, contributing to a lower cost of living that positively impacts residents' quality of life.

The overall cost of living draws on many aspects, including taxes, gas prices, childcare costs, and more. Here are some key factors to consider when it comes to the affordability of life in Ohio:

  • The sales tax rate is 5.75%, with local municipalities adding between 0.75% and 2.25%.
  • The state has a progressive income tax system that ranges from 0% to 3.75%.
  • While transportation costs can be a significant portion of expenses for Ohioans, the overall affordability of life in Ohio more than compensates for it.

Job Opportunities and Economic Growth

Ohio's job market mirrors the diversity of its landscapes. The state offers a range of opportunities in various industries, contributing to a favorable unemployment rate. Additionally, Ohio's affordability is inspiring investment from top companies. Intel, for example, is set to build two semiconductor manufacturing factories in the state, creating thousands of jobs.

The economic landscape of Ohio is shifting towards advanced manufacturing sectors, evidenced by the partnership between Honda and LG to build a battery manufacturing plant, which is planning to employ 2,000 people by 2026. Top employers like the Cleveland Clinic Hospital System and Honda Motor Company reflect this diversity. Ohio offers something for everyone, with average annual salaries varying by sector, from management occupations at $109,760 to installation, maintenance, and repair occupations at $51,340.

City Highlights: Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati

Ohio isn't defined by a single city but is a constellation of three major cities, each possessing its unique charm. These Ohio cities, Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati, also known as the "Big C's," offer diverse culinary scenes, vibrant nightlife, unique architecture, and world-class performances, providing an array of experiences for the state's residents.

Cleveland: Ohio's Flagship City

Photo of Cleveland, Ohio

The city of Cleveland is known as the Rock and Roll Capital of the world. This city's music scene is anchored by the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, celebrating the history and influence of rock music and its icons. The city also hosts the annual Cleveland International Piano Competition, drawing the world's most talented pianists and classical music fans. Historic music venues, such as the Agora Theatre and Ballroom, have long contributed to the city's reputation as a hub for live music and performances.

But Cleveland is not just about music. It's also about a mix of historic and modern attractions. From the Lake Erie shoreline to skyscrapers, stadiums, and restored communities, Cleveland is a city rejuvenated with cultural energy.

Moving to Cleveland gives homebuyers access to the entire Northeastern Ohio region, which includes cities like the city of Akron, the Chagrin Falls community, and the waterfront town of Sandusky.

Columbus: A Thriving Capital City

Photo of Columbus, Ohio

Columbus, the capital city of Ohio, is a city like no other. Its retail sector is experiencing evolution as it becomes a hub for experimentation by brick-and-mortar companies benefiting from the city's demography and favorable geography. This gives residents of Columbus the unique benefit of early access to new products, thanks to the city's position as a testing ground for retail innovations.

Art and culture are at the heart of Columbus. From the Columbus Museum of Art and the Wexner Center for the Arts to the Greater Columbus Convention Center, the city showcases contemporary artwork and talent from local artists. The city also prides itself on being home to "The Best Damn Band in the Land," the Ohio State University Marching Band, significantly enhancing the sports culture and game day experience.

Sustainability is also a key focus in Columbus, as it steers towards a more environmentally friendly economy with initiatives emphasizing solar power and electric vehicle adoption.

Cincinnati: Rich History by the Ohio River

Photo of Cincinnati, Ohio

Situated by the Ohio River, Cincinnati is known for its rich history, promising future, and die-hard sports fans. The city offers a blend of urban and suburban living, making it a great place to call home.

Sports are a way of life here, whether it's the Cincinnati Bengals roaring on the field or the Cincinnati Reds hitting a home run. The passionate sports culture in Cincinnati is matched only by its rich history and the promise of a brighter tomorrow.

Sports Culture & Teams

For sports enthusiasts, Ohio is a paradise. They have several professional sports teams, including:

  • Cleveland Browns
  • Cincinnati Bengals
  • Cleveland Cavaliers
  • Columbus Blue Jackets

But it's not just about the big leagues. Ohio also boasts a rich college sports culture with institutions like Xavier University, known for men's basketball, and Bowling Green, for its enthusiastic spirit crew.

The epic stories accompanying each team create unbreakable bonds between residents. From the Cleveland Guardians' players earning numerous awards to the Cleveland Cavaliers' multiple division titles and Hall of Fame players, the sports culture in Ohio is steeped in history and accomplishments. Ohioans' passion and enthusiasm for the field, court, or rink is second to none, uniting fans across all sports disciplines.

Education & Universities

Education and Universities in Ohio

Ohio excels in education. There are more than 600 school districts throughout the state, meaning students of all ages have easy access to a school that meets their needs. Additionally, Ohio's private schools encourage choice in schooling styles and curriculum. This commitment to education is mirrored at the higher education level, with Ohio State University offering over 200 undergraduate majors and renowned graduate programs in education, business, and medicine.

Other notable institutions in Ohio include:

  • Kent State University, which offers nearly 300 academic programs
  • Miami University in Oxford is known for its strong liberal arts education
  • The University of Dayton, with a focus on experiential learning and community engagement
  • The University of Cincinnati which offers a wide range of programs and a vibrant campus life

Local Cuisine & Dining Experiences

The culinary offerings of Ohio include:

  • Cincinnati chili, uniquely spiced and served with cheddar cheese
  • Polish Boy from Cleveland, combining kielbasa with coleslaw, fries, and barbecue sauce
  • Corned beef in Cleveland
  • Indigenous fruits like the Pawpaw
  • Dishes such as Johnny Marzetti casserole and Buckeyes sweets
  • Comfort food like fried bologna and sauerkraut balls

These dishes provide a glimpse into the state's varied culinary traditions and influences and are beloved Ohio staples.

The dining experience in Ohio is not just about the food but the ambiance. Dining in Ohio is a memorable experience. Some of the unique options in Ohio include:

  • The Buckeye Express Diner's homage to Ohio State Buckeyes and vintage dining cars
  • Schmidt's Sausage Haus, which serves hearty German fare
  • The Schoolhouse Restaurant in a historic school building
  • The Haunted House Restaurant, which is adorned with horror memorabilia
  • Olde Jaol Steakhouse, a restaurant in an old jailhouse

Outdoor Adventures & Natural Beauty

Ash Cave in Hocking Hills State Park, Ohio

Ohio's beauty is not confined to its cities but is also reflected in its varied landscapes, including the picturesque rolling hills. The state, boasting natural wonders from the impressive earth-fill dam at Pleasant Hill Lake to the pristine beaches and cliffs of Kelleys Island, truly is a treasure trove. Outdoor recreational activities in Ohio cater to all levels and preferences. For example, there are wheelchair-friendly trails and trails for people of all ages at Ledges Loop at Hocking Hills State Park.

Yet, Ohio's appeal is broader than daytime adventures. The state provides distinctive outdoor experiences stretching into the night. Whether it's camping next to Kelleys Island beach or exploring the scenic marina trail at Geneva State Park, there's always something to discover in Ohio. And for the little ones, venues like Shawnee State Park and Kelleys Island offer splash parks, golf cart rentals, and new campgrounds near the river.

Weather & Climate

Ohio enjoys a genuine four-season climate, each season unfolding its unique charm. The state transitions from warm, humid summers to long, cold winters punctuated by occasional picturesque snowstorms. Winter in Ohio can see average high temperatures of around 35-40°F and average low temperatures of around 24-25°F. Spring and summer temperatures can fluctuate, with averages typically between 60-85°F.

The climate of northern Ohio is characterized by:

  • Relative humidity averages range from 70–73%, with higher readings in the morning
  • Around 6.1–7.1 days of precipitation in January, indicating a considerably humid climate
  • Significant influence from Lake Erie, which helps moderate heat and cools neighboring cities, adding another layer to Ohio's diverse weather patterns.

Public Transportation & Accessibility

RTA Train in Cleveland, Ohio

Ohio's cities generally have sizeable public transportation networks. The RTA in Cleveland, the state's largest public transit service, accounts for almost half of all public transit journeys. However, in rural areas, public transportation operates in various modes, such as fixed-route, point-deviated fixed-route, and demand-response service, catering to the needs of these communities.

In addition to being the 14th highest public transit ridership in the nation, the state's driving infrastructure keeps everyone well-connected. The average one-way commute takes about 23 minutes, which is a few minutes shorter than the national average.

Major highways in Ohio include:

  • Interstate 75
  • Interstate 76
  • Interstate 70
  • Interstate 80
  • Interstate 90
  • Interstate 91
  • The Ohio Turnpike

Pros & Cons of Living in Ohio

Like any state, moving to Ohio has its advantages and disadvantages. Ohio offers residents an appealing blend of urban and suburban living and swift commutes to work, school, shopping, dining, and entertainment facilities. Coupled with an affordable housing market with a low median home price, Ohio presents an attractive prospect for those considering living in Ohio. However, some disadvantages include the lack of public transportation and the cold winters in some areas.

Despite the challenges, Ohio's reputation for Midwestern kindness and hospitality helps create a welcoming environment and eases the transition for new residents. The state's resilience, spirit, and promise of a brighter future make Ohio a place you'd want to call home.

Moving to Ohio: Your New Home Awaits in the Buckeye State

Ohio offers something for everyone! Living in Cleveland promises a big-city experience with affordable housing and ample job opportunities, while Ohio's rural regions invite residents to enjoy the state's natural beauty. Whether you're a foodie, a sports enthusiast, or a nature lover, the Buckeye State has a place for you. It's a place where opportunity meets affordability, where Midwestern kindness meets big-city living. Move to Ohio to discover the home you've been looking for!

Frequently Asked Questions

Are people moving to or out of Ohio?

More people are moving to Ohio than moving away. In 2022, an estimated 252,000 people moved to the state and 197,000 left.

How is the job market in Ohio?

The job market in Ohio is growing, especially in consulting, healthcare, and advanced manufacturing sectors, with big companies like Intel creating thousands of jobs.

Ready to start looking for your new home in Ohio? Call The Young Team at (216) 402-4774 today to get in touch with a local real estate expert who can help you start your homebuying journey.

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