Moving to Anchorage, AK

Thinking about moving to Anchorage?

You’ve made a bold decision. Alaska certainly isn’t for everyone. The long, dark, cold winters are humbling, and while summers are pleasant and full of sun, they rarely crack 80 degrees. And then there’s the isolation: with over half of Alaska’s population residing in Anchorage’s metro area, there aren’t many other cities to visit, and even Juneau and Fairbanks are far away. And the lower 48: they’re a world — and a long flight — away.

Where Are All the New Residents of Anchorage Moving From?

Even though Anchorage seems far away from almost everywhere, it’s actually a central location for international trade because the airport is within a ten-hour flight of 90 percent of the industrialized world. So, it’s easy…


The 10 Best Neighborhood in Anchorage, AK

Anchorage is an incredible community to be a part of, as many of those looking to move into the area know. This city, the most populous in Alaska, is home to 40 percent of the…


But those very things that dissuade most people from moving to Alaska are what make it appealing to those who live there. To Anchoragites, isolation is freedom, peace, and quiet. It’s access to incredible nature, hiking and hunting and fishing unparalleled elsewhere in the world. And while even most Anchoragites will admit that the winters are tough, the climate also makes it great for winter sports, and the mild winters with their long hours of sunlight make up for it all. Many of those who do choose to live here wouldn’t ever consider moving anywhere else.

And Anchorage is growing. Between 2010 and 2016, more than 6,366 people have moved to Anchorage, an increase of 2.2%. It doesn’t hurt that the government will actually pay you to live in Alaska. Thanks to the Alaska Permanent Fund, each resident of Alaska receives a portion of the taxes paid by oil companies — in 2016, that was $1,022.

Living

Anchorage is home to 298,192 Anchoragites. With an area of 1,704.7 square miles, Anchorage has a population density of 175 persons per square mile, which makes it less dense than many other cities of comparable size.

The Anchorage, AK Metropolitan Statistical Area boasts a population of 402,557 people, of which Anchorage proper’s population makes up 74%.

Housing

Anchorage’s isolation comes at a cost: housing is pricey. The median home value in Anchorage is $294,900, 47% above the US median value, according to Zillow. The median price per square foot in Anchorage is $191. Over the past 5 years, home values in Anchorage have increased by 2%.

Renters in Anchorage will also have a hard time finding affordable housing. The median rent in Anchorage is $1,883 per month, which is 32% higher than the US median. Over the past year, rental rates in Anchorage have decreased by 3.5%.

Economy

Anchorage’s economy has been a bit sluggish over the past few years. The Anchorage metro area’s GDP remained a steady $29 billion between 2010 and 2015. The metro area has a per capita GDP of $71,731. According to the US Census Bureau, the median household income in Anchorage, AK is $76,917, 33% higher than the national median. Anchorage’s unemployment rate is 6.5%.

Anchorage, AK Arts and Entertainment

Hearth Artisan Pizza

1200 W Northern Lights Blvd, Ste F Anchorage, Alaska, AK 99503

Snow City Cafe

1034 West 4th Avenue, Anchorage, AK 99501, United States

Brown Bag Sandwich Co.

535 W. 3rd Ave Anchorage, AK 99501

Club Paris

417 W 5th Ave, Anchorage, AK 99501

Tommy's Burger Stop

1106 W 29th Pl, Anchorage, AK 99503

Moose's Tooth

3300 Old Seward Hwy Anchorage, AK 99503

Pangea

508 W 6th Ave Anchorage, AK 99501

Spenard Road House

1049 W Northern Lights Blvd Anchorage, AK 99503

Simon & Seafort’s Saloon & Grill

420 L St Anchorage, AK 99501

Restaurants
Hearth Artisan Pizza
Snow City Cafe
Brown Bag Sandwich Co.
Club Paris
Tommy's Burger Stop
Moose's Tooth
Pangea
Spenard Road House
Simon & Seafort’s Saloon & Grill

Anchorage Alehouse

2830 C St Anchorage, AK 99503

Glacier Brewhouse

737 W 5th Ave Ste 110 Anchorage, AK 99501

49th State Brewing Co - Anchorage

717 West 3rd Ave Anchorage, AK 99514

Darwin's Theory

426 G St Anchorage, AK 99501

Koot’s

2435 Spenard Rd Anchorage, AK 99503

Van's Dive Bar

1027 East 5th Avenue, Anchorage, AK 99501, United States

Bernie’s Bungalow Lounge

626 D St Anchorage, AK 99501

Bubbly Mermaid Champagne & Oyster Bar

417 D St Anchorage, AK 99501

Tequila 61

445 W 4th Ave Anchorage, AK 99501

Nightlife
Anchorage Alehouse
Glacier Brewhouse
49th State Brewing Co - Anchorage
Darwin's Theory
Koot’s
Van's Dive Bar
Bernie’s Bungalow Lounge
Bubbly Mermaid Champagne & Oyster Bar
Tequila 61

Anchorage Museum

625 C St Anchorage, AK 99501

Alaska Native Heritage Center

8800 Heritage Center Dr Anchorage, AK 99504

The Alaska Museum of Science & Nature

201 N Bragaw St Anchorage, AK 99508

Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum

4721 Aircraft Dr Anchorage, AK 99502

Alaska Trooper Museum

245 W 5th Ave Anchorage, AK 99501

Alaska Experience Theater

333 W 4th Ave Ste 207 Anchorage, AK 99501

Oscar Anderson House Museum

420 M St Anchorage, AK 99501

Alaska Veterans Museum

333 W 4th Ave Ste 227 Anchorage, AK 99501

Culture
Anchorage Museum
Alaska Native Heritage Center
The Alaska Museum of Science & Nature
Alaska Aviation Heritage Museum
Alaska Trooper Museum
Alaska Experience Theater
Oscar Anderson House Museum
Alaska Veterans Museum

Weather

If you’re allergic to cold weather, Anchorage might not be for you. Anchorage winters are cold, with an average temperature of 21 degrees. Summers in Anchorage are cool, with an average temperature of 55 degrees. The average temperature in Spring is 47 degrees and the average temperature in Fall is 25 degrees.

If you’re moving to Anchorage, you better bring your umbrella! Anchorage sees an average 115 rainy days per year, and had an average annual rainfall of inches. Anchorage is relatively humid, with an average annual relative humidity of 71. And don’t sweat it if you forget to pack your sunglasses. Anchorage only gets an average of 1,857 sunny hours per year and 61 sunny days, fewer than much of the rest of the country, although keep in mind that because of Anchorage’s northerly position, days are short with only a few hours of sunlight during the winter, and long with only a few hours of dark during the summer.

Crime

Anchorage does have some problems with violent crime, with a violent crime rate of 1,071 incidents per 100,000 persons according to the FBI, a higher rate than average. Property crime rates in Anchorage are relatively high, with a rate of 3,918 incidents per 100,000 persons, a higher rate than average.

Traffic

Because of its size and low density, traffic isn’t as much of a problem in Anchorage as it can be in cities in the lower 48, but there are some special conditions you need to consider when planning your commute. First, winter snows and long periods of cold weather can make driving even short distances a challenge, and most people drive sport utility vehicles of trucks. Second, Anchorage is very spread out, and you will need to drive between most destinations. Finally, you’ll need to watch out for wildlife while driving — those moose crossing signs aren’t a joke!

Cost of Living

Thanks to its isolation, Anchorage is an expensive place to live with a high cost of living. Many goods have to be imported across a long distance into Anchorage. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis‘s Regional Price Parity survey, which takes into account cost of living metrics including the price of goods and services and housing, Anchorage has a regional price parity of 119.2, 8.9% above the average for US metro areas.

Education

There are four institutions of higher education in Anchorage: the University of Alaska – Anchorage, Alaska Pacific University, Charter College, and Wayland Baptist University. The University of Alaska – Anchorage is the largest institution of higher education in Alaska, while Alaska Pacific University is a prestigious liberal arts school.

Demographics

Anchorage is 51% male and 49% female, a higher ratio male than in most cities in the lower 48. Anchorage is a racially diverse city, with a large Native American population. 60% of residents are white, 8.6% Hispanic, 8.2% Asian, 7.6% of two or more races, 7.1% are American Indian, 5.8% black, and 2.3% are Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander.

Among the population over the age of 25, 92.7% have a high school diploma, while 33% have at least a bachelor’s degree, and 11.2% have a graduate or professional degree. 50% of Anchoragites are married. 8.2% are foreign born.

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