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April 23, 2018

15 Things you need to know about Vancouver before you move there

Vancouver you beauty! With that perfect skyline and amenities such as perfect schools and green spaces is it really surprising that you want to move there? The city is gorgeous and full of promising opportunities for all those who are willing to take up the challenge of packing up and moving to this curious place. Gorgeous as the ‘Couve’ is, moving to a new place is always full of hassle and often stressful.

This is where your preliminary research becomes relevant. This is also when we revert to the experience of other people who have moved or professional Vancouver realtors. These folks would tell you that even though Vancouver is magnificent, ‘the move’ is stressful but worry not! It is worth it. We gleaned insights and composed a list of fifteen things you should know before you move to this wonderful place so you can eliminate the stress that accompanies the ‘big move’ and be proud of your decision:

1)        You’d love it if you are ‘Outdoorsy’:


Vancouver is an outdoorsy person's dream. There's just so much you can do outdoors, you'd only want to stay inside to nap, and you'd only want to nap so you can be back outside as soon as possible. During the summer, there are carefully orchestrated series of activities you can get busy yourself with. These include concerts and displays in Esther Short Park and county public spots. During the winters, you can enjoy a lazy walk by the Columbia River. Throughout the year, you can chill out at the farmer's market where you get fresh organic produce, or you can schedule a visit to one of the sunny hilltop wineries. See there's so much to do, you won't even get time to regret your move.

2)        Vancouver is synonymous with ‘Serenity’:


We know serenity means different things to different people but then ‘The Couve' has different things for different people too. Take a short drive to the mountains on a Friday and Mt. St. Helens, in all its glory would welcome you or bask at one of the beaches overlooking the pristine Pacific Ocean. If Vancouver gets too familiar, you can always take a two-hour drive to Seattle and immerse yourself in the bustle of the city. If the city is too much, take an hour-long drive to Lake Merwin. In short, all sorts of possibilities await you in this scenic city.

3)        Housing does not cost much:


As any true Vancouver real estate agent would tell you, housing is pretty cheap in Vancouver. In fact, housing costs are three percent less than the overall average American housing costs. A one bedroom apartment costs only $1013 a month, so if you don't need a lot of space, you can probably live on a budget. A two bedroom apartment typically costs around $1079, so there is little monetary difference that goes into expanding your space. Hostels and dorms are other alternatives that cost less too. The property taxes are pretty low too, so Vancouver won't take its toll on your wallet as far as housing is concerned.

4)        ‘The move’ will help you save up:


In addition to a low property tax, Vancouver does not even levy income tax on its residents, so it will be pretty easy for you to save up since you will have lesser tax deductions. You get to keep more of your hard earned money. Also, grocery prices are pretty average too (they match the overall American average). You can begin budgeting more effectively from this moment on!

5)        It has a well-established transportation system:


Vancouver has a well-planned transportation system. The C-Tran or the Clark County Public Transportation Benefit Area authority run the transit system effectively and maintain it on a regular basis. The routes are pretty helpful for the citizens since they connect Vancouver with Clark County and even Portland. Most areas are accessible thanks to the 135 bus lines, vanpools and transit vehicles. Two interstate freeways also join Vancouver to Portland and Seattle.

6)        You can avoid the high sales tax:


Vancouver has a slightly high sales tax but a nonexistent income tax. The neighboring Portland has a high-income tax but virtually no sales tax, now you do the math. All a Vancouver resident needs to do to avoid the sales tax is cross the bridge to Portland and make big purchases from there. You'll be buying things for cheap.

7)        The job market is thriving:


There is no income tax, so everyone wants to work here. The economy once depended on trade and salmon fishing, but now it is transitioning from these traditional sectors to the technology based sector. There is plenty of room in the IT industry for new employees. There is also a lot of focus on the services sector, so job opportunities are available in schools and medical centers too.

8)        It has good schools:


If you are moving in with young ones, know that you are placing them in safe hands. Vancouver Public School and Evergreen School District handle the schooling in the city. In the West part of Vancouver, Vancouver Public schools take charge of their 36 facilities and five standardized high schools and qualified teachers. Two schools for specialized learning are also available.

The Eastern side likewise is handled by Evergreen with a bulk of 36 schools and 26000 students. It's the fastest growing district, and it is the fourth largest in all of Washington. Also, for higher education, there is Clark Community college and Washington State University.

9)        Lots of green spaces:


Despite rapid development in some parts of the city, Vancouver has managed to preserve its aesthetic appeal. The surrounding areas are full of natural beauty, and we've mentioned the mountains before, but even within the city, there are many green spaces. There is a lot of green to feast your eyes on. Think lush lawns, canopies, lots of shady trees and foliage. You can find a quiet bench to sit on and sparrows to feed almost anywhere in the city.

10)     There’s a small town charm to it:


Uptown Village is a spot you can unwind at with your group of friends after a week of work. In need of retail therapy? The cute old fashioned shops and boutiques have a lot of distinct apparel to offer. Eateries with their outdoor seating arrangement and small cafes with almost religious devotion to coffee make Uptown special. Then there are yearly events like St. Patty’s Day Parade.

11)     The weather is interesting:


Here you’ll get a bit of everything. The summers are sunny, dry and warm and the winters are chilly and wet. The city gets plenty of rain through, from refreshing drizzles in Spring and fall to freezing rain during the winters. There’s a bit of snow too but only enough to make the city pretty. It doesn’t accumulate and make life hell for residents.

12)     Lots of places for kids:


If you are moving with babies or planning on having them soon, know that Vancouver is heaven for children. There are so many public parks, and there's even a new baseball field in the city. There is also this focus on sports, and healthy athletic leagues work on tapping into children's kinesthetic potential. Then there are community projects; art inspired events and literary activities for children.

13)     ‘The Couve’ wants to remain green:


The Couve is green, and it intends to remain that way. There is a lot of focus on the preservation of the environment and organic produce. An example is the farmer's market where organic produce is encouraged. There is also a city wide emphasis on recycling. The city has an annual Recycled Arts Fest and several events to encourage recycling and reuse.

14)     Its welcomes your pets:


Doggos don’t get left behind either. Your ball of floof can go anywhere with you since there are many dog parks in Vancouver. The Dogtober Fest is when all the residents get together to celebrate the joy dogs bring to our lives. Events such as Dog Olympics are a part of it. Hotels and restaurants are pet-friendly too. You can even take your cat on hiking since The Columbia River Renaissance Trail welcomes pet parents with their pets.

15)     Can we talk about the beer?


Finally yes. The beer you should know about before you move to ‘The Couve’. There’s an annual Brewfest that celebrates beer and all things liquor. You can sample local brews and watch them being made. If this wasn’t enough, there’s a summer Brewfest and a winter Brewfest. There are even wineries atop the hill that you can enjoy!

What are you even waiting for? Contact a Vancouver realtor today to check out homes for sale in Vancouver WA.

July 31, 2017

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