Living Here

What’s It Like Living in Columbus, Ohio?

From youthful exuberance and plenty to do, to broad-based economic and job growth, living in Columbus, Ohio has it all.

Sep 13, 2021 // By David White

When a metro area leads a region of the country in job growth, population growth, and GDP growth year after year, it raises the question, “Why?” In the Midwest, that metro is Columbus and the reasons are numerous – diverse industry and employment options, well-paying jobs, a variety of living options, and an affordable lifestyle.

But those don’t do Columbus justice in explaining the momentum that the entire area is experiencing. What’s it really like living in Columbus, Ohio?

Columbus Short North District

Vibrant People. Vibrant Economy. 

Living in Columbus surrounds one with youthful energy, with an average resident age of 32.2 years and a top 10 concentration of millennials. That’s aided by the presence of The Ohio State University, a boon to the Region’s economy, with many graduates choosing to stay local thanks to the Region’s affordability and high quality of life.

“When my husband and I moved out to Columbus, we fell in love with the city’s youthful energy—the same optimism I felt in Seattle 15 years ago,” says Brady Konya, co-founder of Middle West Spirits, of living in Columbus, Ohio, since 2008. “The people we met here were smart and welcoming. Columbus won us over with its Midwestern charm and East Coast sensibility.”

Among the reasons to consider living in Columbus, Ohio, are a booming technology industry driven by an ever-increasing presence of startup unicorns (those valued at $1 billion or more), an energetic food scene, and budding brewery districts. You’ll find trendy taprooms, such as Wolf’s Ridge Brewing in vibrant Downtown Columbus, and landmark family-owned restaurants, such as Lindey’s, a 40-year-old gem tucked away in the city’s historic German Village.

“I just love the fact that you have different neighborhoods that reflect different characters because people want flavor,” says Alexia Winfield, an analyst at JPMorgan Chase, which has its second largest global operations center and largest technology presence in the Columbus Region. “They want to see a reflection of themselves, but they also want to see a different reflection where they can experience different cultures and not feel as though they have to travel far to experience those things.”

When everyone says Columbus is a very easy city to live in, they're right

Edward Liang,

Artistic director, BalletMet

Things to Do in Columbus, Ohio

When living in Columbus, Ohio, there’s something for everyone. Not only do residents have the nation’s top zoo, science center, and public library in their backyard, but major concerts, professional sporting events, theater, and art exhibits to explore year-round.

The Arena District in Downtown Columbus boasts premier entertainment venues, including the Columbus Crew’s brand new, one-of-a-kind Field (sponsored by a local tech superstar). Nationwide Arena, home to the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets, hosts the world’s top music artists, where Dave Matthews Band, Elton John, Justin Bieber, and Chris Stapleton have taken the stage on tour. In fact, Twenty One Pilots, best known for its Grammy Award-winning single, Stressed Out, hail from Columbus, where the founding members met at The Ohio State University. The University District can’t be beat for the many who love The Ohio State Buckeyes, as well as the vibrant Gateway Film Center which offers both independent, wide release, and foreign movies.

An extraordinary array of local talent such as the Travis Reid Ball Band,  BearFuzz, Joey Aich, and T. Wong take the stage throughout the city. The Columbus Children’s Theater, Opera Columbus, Catco, and Balletmet Columbus, for example, are chock full of theater and dance performances. The Short North Arts District, situated along the stretch of High Street between downtown and The Ohio State’s campus, is an arts neighborhood at heart, decorated with murals, more than 100 restaurants, galleries, and boutiques among new mixed-use and residential development. Nature admirers can find 13-acres of lush gardens, special horticulture, and art exhibitions at Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, just two miles from Downtown Columbus.

Columbus is a great place to raise a family

Great Companies. Great Jobs. Great Value.

Professional opportunities are also plentiful when living in Columbus, Ohio. A list of the forty largest employers in the area reveals a wealth of opportunities for those seeking employment, and in industries like e-commerce, gene therapy, and insurtech. Further, as one of the top 5 cities to work in technology, plenty of local jobs are available at such industry giants as IBM, Google, Amazon, and Facebook.

READY Robotics founder Benjamin Gibbs finds the city so appealing that he relocated from Baltimore in 2018, despite advice from venture capitalist fund leaders urging him to move the company to the West Coast. Since moving, the company has nearly tripled its staff.

Driving this momentum – and an important factor for anyone considering living in Columbus, Ohio – is housing affordability. The Columbus Region offers lower than average home prices, as well as a significantly lower cost of living, allowing you to live your best life without breaking the bank. Housing in Columbus is generally lower (check the latest percentage here) than the national average, while at the same time seeing an active reselling market that is setting the stage for real estate investors and those able to buy and hold.

In short, the advantages of living in Columbus, Ohio, are beyond measure. Featuring a robust job market, lower than average home and living costs, countless entertainment options, and green options galore, the Columbus Region is vibrant and booming.

“What I’ve learned coming from New York City and Chicago is that when everyone says Columbus is a very easy city to live in, they’re right,” says Edward Liang, artistic director at BalletMet. “It’s so accommodating and easy and friendly, with access to all different types of foods and culture.”

Interested in learning more about living in Columbus, Ohio? Contact us today and we’ll get you connected with the right people to help you find a place to live, find a new job, and otherwise plug into the community.


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