So you're looking to move to Columbus? Great! It's an awesome city with plenty of things to do, places to go, food to eat, and obviously we're the home of The Ohio State Buckeyes!
But let's be honest, every city has its pitfalls. Before you decide to move here, let's breakdown the pros and cons of living in Columbus Ohio.
Columbus is FULL of incredible restaurants and eateries, both downtown and scattered around the city. All of the neighborhoods in Columbus like The Short North and German Village, have their own style and type of food. From cold pressed juice bars, to hot dogs joints like Dirty Frank's Hot Dog Palace (You read that right...Hot Dog Palace), all the way to at least one restaurant for any ethnic food you can dream of, there is truly something for everyone.
Not only do we have a lot of different places to eat, but Columbus is becoming a craft beer hub. We even have a brewery district. Many of our local brews are making their way nationwide, and we just recently had international brewery BrewDog make it's home just outside of downtown.
Cost of Living Is Relatively Low
Columbus gives you the feel of a bustling city, without the cost of one. Of course housing varies by neighborhood, but the overall cost of living in Columbus is relatively low compared to other major cities. According to PayScale.com, the cost of living in Columbus is 10% lower than the national average.
A Mix of City and Nature
While downtown Columbus is a bustling urban area, the entire Central Ohio area is filled with nature preserves, state parks, and metro parks. Some notable parks that offer just a little bit more than your normal park, are Schiller Park in German Village, the Park of Roses in Clintonville, and Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Garden.
When you think of Ohio, you probably see rolling fields and farm land. But we actually have some pretty cool parks right outside of Columbus that feature beautiful lakes and waterfalls. Head to Indian Run or Hayden Falls Park, both less than 20 miles from downtown, to see these natural wonders.
If you're up for a trip, there's even more waterfalls within a half-day's drive from the city.
So, depending on where you're from, this could be totally new to you. Ohio as a whole is in the eastern portion of the United States and that means we're blessed (or cursed, each year is a different sentiment) to experience spring, summer, fall, and winter. Unlike states that are coastal, or far north or south, and only get mild weather changes, we get them all!
The Drivers & Traffic
Any major city is going to have traffic problems and rush hour, and while Columbus traffic may be inferior compared to places like Los Angeles or New York, we actually have some of the worst drivers in the nation.
Columbus was ranked in the Top 10 Worst Drivers by City by QuoteWizard. The study ranked the 75 most populated metropolitan areas and was based on data from over two million incident counts that included accidents, speeding tickets, DUI's, and citations like running a red light, using a cellphone while driving, etc).
So yeah, having all four seasons is a pro, but after you live in Columbus for a calendar year, you'll understand how our love/hate relationship with the weather is like a bond that we all share. You'll also understand the benefit of a good winter boots and a raincoat.
Not only will you have all four seasons in a year, you'll also have all four seasons in the span of a week and sometimes a day. The inconsistencies in the weather can make it really hard to plan for temperature changes, or even preparing your house/car for things like snow and winter storms.
The other con to living in Columbus, like any other major city, is that we actually have five seasons: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, and Construction. Unlike the other four, Construction is a year-round season and just like winter, it really messes up your travel plans.
It's Tough To Buy A Home
Columbus is a bustling city that is truly growing and prospering, which makes it a great place to live. However, that also makes it hard to actually buy and own a house. Because of the growth and the large amount of higher education institutions in the area, there is a lack of inventory, so finding a home in a neighborhood you like, that you can afford, that has what you need, becomes difficult.
The flip side, however, is that there are a lot of rental homes and apartments in the area. The large student and recent graduate population in the area drives steady demand for rental housing. While many places around downtown may be catering to market renters, there are rental companies that make sure to offer affordable housing for students as well.
There you have it, some of the major pros and cons of living in Columbus Ohio. Overall, the city is an incredibly diverse, welcoming, unique city that has a lot to offer and many of the cons on this list are subjective and could changed based on your personal preferences and experiences.