Arizona is a state with a population of little over 7.1 million people, where the home-ownership rate is 63%, according to the US Census Bureau. With 2.68 persons per household, the Grand Canyon state is definitely pro-family life. In fact, 40,555 weddings took place in Arizona last year. But since most of its surface is covered by desert, you might be wondering where is the right place to settle down and grow a family in Arizona. Well, the real estate agents listed on RealEstateAgent.com picked five of the most family-friendly cities so take your time to read their comments.
The city of Scottsdale
The best places to raise a family in Arizona are concentrated around Phoenix, with Scottsdale always ranking well for livability. With over 35 years of experience, John is among the best real estate agents in Scottsdale. He’s been helping families settle down in this city for years and none of them ever complained. Quite the contrary! Many have encouraged their family and friends to move to this booming city also called the “most livable city”. Michael and Beth took this decision last year and hired him.
“We come from a rural town in Massachusetts. We both grew up in the Catholic faith so when I came to my sister’s wedding here, two years ago, I found that Scottsdale’s population is about 40% Catholic. Of course, I was hooked by the weather, too. I started to really crave for the desert lifestyle and landscape. I wanted to move here ever since, so Michael and I took the plunge and kissed winters goodbye. John was our agent and he helped us find the right house for us, not too far from Our Lady of Perpetual Help – the catholic school where our kids get the best education we could have hoped for,” Beth explained.
We stay around the capital city of Phoenix, and moving down to the south, we find another gem for families of all sizes – Chandler.
When Terry got her real estate license back in 2000, Chandler had a population of 176,580. Projections for 2020 advertise a population of 267,069. So, what motivates newcomers to grow roots here? “Most families decide to move to Chandler for the many job opportunities it has,” says Terry. “It may have a small-town feeling but the amenities rival any metropolis and the job market features some great employers like Intel, Wells Fargo, and PayPal. The city has done a lot to welcome new businesses, so there’s plenty of growth potential.
Chandler is definitely among the best places to raise a family in Arizona. And don’t just take my word for it! Gary and Robin are the last couple I helped relocate from Cleveland. When I called them a few months after they had moved, can you guess what they told me? They said they should have made the move a long time ago. Gary had found a job in the IT industry while still in Cleveland, and Robin is now pregnant.” What’s also great about Chandler is the fact that it is affordable, has a younger population than Scottsdale, and a low crime rate. If it sounds like the place you could live forever, don’t hesitate to find a real estate agent in Chandler!
The city of Maricopa
Only 35 miles south of Phoenix lies the city of Maricopa, in the county of Pinal. Why did we include it among the best places to raise a family in Arizona? Well, with a population of about 54,000 and little over 18,000 households, there is no doubt this city values family life. It boasts no more than 13,845 families with an average size of 3 members. Maricopa is a vibrant city with plenty of residential and commercial developments. Any real estate agents in Maricopa would tell you that there are most pros than cons to raising a family in this city.
“The main reason why I encourage people to move to Maricopa is that money can buy a lot more here, especially bigger homes. Trevor and Susan were a lovely couple that moved here recently and I helped them buy a new construction in a northern subdivision. They love it here, even though Trevor has a daily commute to Phoenix. They also have two girls and so far they have no complaints about the schools here,” said Jason, a real estate agent from Maricopa. Now, going north, another family-friendly city in Arizona is Peoria.
The 9th largest city in Arizona has a population of over 160,000 people. This Phoenix suburb is huge. Peoria Unified School District provides education to more than 36,000 students in 34 elementary schools and seven high schools. Trevor and Susan have moved here from Covina, CA with their two sons and never looked back. “There are plenty of good schools all over the city, so when we tried to find a real estate agent, we didn’t know what neighborhood to choose. We’ve got everything sorted out and we absolutely love our new home and the lifestyle we have here. The heat is bearable, there are plenty of things to do and many water parks where we go for a swim and cool down. Besides, for me, as a woman, Peoria is retail therapy on steroids,” Susan confessed.
“We spend a lot of time in Arrowhead Towne Center, Park West Mall, and in the other malls as well. There’s a restaurant galore. We never get bored! Nor do our boys!” The median household income is $63,025 per year which means that the city is quite affordable. Many visitors have also noticed the beautiful landscaping and the great curb appeal of the homes here. If you’re ready to look for a home in Peoria, find a real estate agent and get pre-approved for a home loan.
Founded in 1775 by the Spanish, Tucson is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the US. Lexi Clark has been among the top real estate agents in Arizona for almost two decades. She can never get tired of the Sonoran landscape. Besides, Tucson gets 350 days of sunshine in the US, so Lexi admits that this city is not for everybody.
“I’m usually very curious about what motivates people to move to Tucson. So, when I met Ben and Valerie I supposed they were looking for a place to retire. And the city is quite a good choice for empty nesters. However, Ben had a skin condition and they decided to move here for the sun that benefits his condition. I personally recommend the north part of the city which has great mountain views.” As you see, Arizona has a city for families at any point in their life cycle.
How to identify yourself the best places to raise a family in Arizona?
You don’t have to grow old in the place you were born. Nothing should force you to stay in a city that doesn’t provide the best amenities for a growing family. Moving after the wedding is a natural step for many newlyweds who want to start fresh. Whether that is your case or not, let us leave you a few tips on how to identify the best places to raise a family in Arizona.
Look at the population
Now it is easier than ever to analyze online the statistics of a certain city. There is plenty of data. All you have to do is to search for it and analyze it. Do you prefer to live in a big city or in a rural town, where you can make friends easier? Are you looking for towns with a dominant religion? Or a certain level of income? All these questions can help you filter down your options.
Look at home prices
There are regions where you can buy a bigger lot and a bigger house for the same amount of money, just like in the city of Maricopa. If you plan to have more than one child, it is wise to buy a larger house from the beginning. Overall, Arizona is quite affordable, but you should know that the most expensive area for housing is Paradise Valley.
Check the school district
Arizona has some of the best schools in the country, so think in perspective. What school would you like your children to attend? Don’t be surprised if the best schools are in very expensive areas. Homeowners in that area also pay higher property taxes so the schools get more dollars for each student. However, good schools may also be in cities with good employability rates.
Find more about the crime rate
Safety is of paramount importance for any family. A great data resource is the Crime in the US report from FBI – https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2017/crime-in-the-u.s.-2017 Also, check if your home insurance covers your garage, too. And look at the neighboring homes. Do they have window grills? For extra security, you may want to look for properties in gated communities, as well.
Get a feeling of the job market
There is no point in buying a large house in a small town where jobs are scarce. Of course, you can always commute, so take that time into consideration as well as the cost of your commute. Other good indicators should be the unemployment rate, the structure of the population according to the level of education, and the number of big employers in the area. Also, how many empty commercial spaces do you see when walking down the street? Run away from the cities with many vacant spaces!
Every day, people move in and out of a home looking for a breath of fresh air, a new start, a new miracle. The real estate market is constantly shifting creating waves of well-being here and depressions there. If you felt the wind of change blowing towards you, where would you let it take you? We would like to find where you would like to live with your family so please leave a comment below.