Moving to Phoenix, AZ

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Phoenix At-A-Glance

Nestled in the heart of scenic Arizona, Phoenix is aptly called the “Valley of the Sun.” With over 300 days of sunshine a year, it’s a sun-worshiper’s paradise. Considered one of the most diverse cities in Arizona, Phoenix is renowned for its luxurious resorts, meticulously maintained golf courses and abundance of outdoor activities.

With a population of 1.7 million, Phoenix was recently crowned the “Most Popular Migration Destination” for a good reason. Its job market is exploding, and the city offers its residents an exceptional quality of life with attractions and amenities galore. From world-class spas to first-rate museums to “Have I died and gone to heaven?” tacos, Phoenix truly has something for everyone.

Phoenix Essential Resources

City of Phoenix website Everything you need to know about living in Phoenix. Chock full of useful resources, including information about the City of Phoenix government, calendars of city meetings and events, important city terminology and more. Voter registration Register to vote in the state of Arizona. Vehicle registration and license Everything you need to […]

Day-To-Day Life in This Desert Paradise

If cities had their own theme song, Phoenix’s would likely be The Merrymen’s “Feeling Hot Hot Hot!” This scorching city consistently tops lists for the nation’s most sweltering temperatures, with over 100 days each year of temperatures over 100 degrees. On the bright side, if you settle down here, you can be active outdoors 365 days a year. 

 Yes, Phoenix’s heat is world-famous, but there is so much more to this dynamic desert town.

Incredible Outdoor Adventures: Phoenix’s one-two punch of warm weather and breathtaking beauty makes it a mecca for outdoor enthusiasts. Hiking is far and away the most beloved physical pursuit, but golfing, cycling, kayaking and fishing are also popular. 

An Impressive Arts Scene: Phoenix’s arts scene ranges from world-class institutes like the Heard Museum to edgy street art and eclectic annual arts festivals like the popular Phoenix Art Walk.

Culinary Delights Galore: Phoenix is a foodie haven emphasizing farm-to-table fare and boasts an envious food truck scene. When it’s time to wash down your delicious Phoenix food, you’ll have plenty of options thanks to the city’s thriving wine and coffee culture.

Talented Teams: Boasting teams in all four major professional sports leagues, the NFL (Arizona Cardinals), the NHL (Arizona Coyotes), the NBA (Phoenix Suns) and the MLB (Arizona Diamondbacks), you can root for the home team all year long. 

Pinch-Yourself Sunsets: No, you’re not dreaming, and yes, they are always that beautiful. Phoenix’s remarkable sunrises and sunsets ensure that even amateur photographers capture frame-worthy shots.

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Living in The Valley of the Sun Comes with a Price

Arizona’s tax system is made up of several taxes, including a 2.5% individual income tax, a 4.9% corporate income tax rate, and an 8.37% combined state and local sales tax rate. 

Compared to other large cities, Phoenix is relatively affordable. However, if you decide to move here, prepare to pay more for things like housing, utilities and transportation. 

According to Payscale, this is what you can expect to pay for some everyday expenses in the city:

  • A home: $559,132 
  • Rent: $1,700/month
  • Energy bill: $181.59/month
  • Phone bill: $195.36/month
  • Gas: $3.62/gallon
  • Milk: $2.42
  • Doctor’s visit: $116.67

Phoenix’s thriving economy and rapid population growth have led to an increase in housing costs, which are around 24 percent higher than the national average. Before deciding where to live, newcomers need to consider the affordability of neighborhoods, especially given the city’s median household income of around $65,000. Paradise Valley and Scottsdale offer high-end homes but at a premium price. On the other hand, South Mountain and Maryvale are a few of the more affordable areas.

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A Hotspot for Finding Jobs & Building Businesses

Phoenix boasts a robust and diverse economy. With an unemployment rate lower than the national average, it’s an attractive destination for job seekers and businesses. You’ll find several Fortune 500 companies in town, along with plenty of tech startups. Phoenix is often ranked as one of the best places in the country to start a business, thanks to its supportive business environment and a growing number of resources and incentives for entrepreneurs.

A few of the top industries in town include education, hospitality, financial services, and trade/transportation/utilities. For young professionals seeking employment opportunities, Phoenix offers a range of options with top employers such as the State of Arizona, Wal-mart Stores Inc., and Banner Health. 

Navigating Phoenix’s Real Estate Market

Phoenix’s strong job market and growing population have driven the demand for housing. However, houses here are relatively affordable compared to many other major cities. The median home price sits at around $464,900.

 Currently, 64 percent of homes are owner-occupied, and 36 percent are renter-occupied. The average rent for a 1-bedroom apartment is $1,400, a studio apartment is $1,245, and you can expect to pay around $1,700 for two bedrooms.

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Discover Your Dream Neighborhood

With its abundance of attractions and activities, deciding to move to Phoenix is easy. But choosing which of its incredible neighborhoods to live in? That’s a whole other matter. This shortlist of three fantastic spots should help. 


If the term “living in the lap of luxury” is music to your ears, Arcadia will likely top your list of neighborhoods to consider calling home. Not only will you enjoy breathtaking views of Camelback Mountain, you’ll also have easy access to high-end shopping, lavish spas and gourmet dining. Arcadia offers a variety of home styles and is known for its impressive amenities, lush greenery, and walkability.

Ahwatukee Foothills

Located at the foothills of the South Mountains, Ahwatukee boasts excellent schools, high safety ratings and a family-friendly atmosphere. The neighborhood’s numerous festivals and events, including the popular weekly Ahwatukee Farmers Market, offer residents plenty of opportunities to connect with their community. The area has abundant recreational activities, including numerous golf courses, community centers and the South Mountain Park and Preserve.

North Scottsdale

This stunning Phoenix suburb is home to many well-known golf courses, luxury spas and trendy wine bars. With spectacular mountain views and a highly desirable quality of life, it’s no surprise North Scottsdale is one of the most popular areas in Phoenix. People from far and wide flock to the area for its upscale shopping and to hike, bike and ride horseback in the McDowell Sonoran Preserve.

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Navigate Like a Local in Phoenix

With a Walk Score of 41, Phoenix residents need to rely on more than just their feet to get around. Luckily, there are several other convenient transportation options available.

  • Valley Metro Rail: Powered by electricity, these quiet street-level trains run 18-22 hours each day of the week. You’ll find 38 stations throughout Phoenix, each showcasing unique artwork reflecting its community.
  • Phoenix Transit: The city’s public bus transportation system operates over 100 routes seven days a week, with some routes offering 24-hour service.
  • Phoenix Dial-a-Ride: Available from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, the Phoenix Dial-a-Ride provides reliable service for persons with disabilities. 
  • E-Scooters: While downtown, Phoenix residents can take advantage of E-Scooters to get around. However, safety rules are in place, such as avoiding no-ride zones and not riding on sidewalks.
  • Rideshare: For those seeking convenient and reliable transportation options, Uber and Lyft are readily available citywide.    

A Brighter Future Begins Here

Phoenix’s diverse school system offers many educational opportunities, with 325 public schools and over 200 chartered, alternative and private schools available. The city’s public school system is one of the nation’s largest, serving over 110,000 students.

Regarding higher education, there are 19 postsecondary options. Students can attend a highly populated school like Arizona State University (the largest public university in the nation), Grand Canyon University or the University of Phoenix-Arizona. Or, they can opt for less intimidating settings. No matter their school, students can count on receiving a high-quality education in Phoenix. 

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Get Used to Hearing, “But it’s a Dry Heat!”

Phoenix’s weather can be summed up quite easily: cool winters, hot, dry summers and sunshine for days. This place is nicknamed the “Valley of the Sun” for a reason! Actually, for around 300 reasons. 

With an average daily high of 98+ degrees, Phoenix’s hot season runs from May 29 to September 20. If three-digit temperatures have you running for cover, you’ll definitely want to hide in July when the average high is a staggering 106 degrees. The cool season, from November 21 to February 26, brings some relief with average highs of <74 degrees. 

Ten Awe-Inspiring Experiences You Won’t Want To Miss

Frankly, there are far more than 10 incredible things to experience in Phoenix, but these should be at the top of your list.

  1. Visit the Grand Canyon. Exploring the Grand Canyon is a common bucket list item you can easily cross off if you live in Phoenix. Less than a 4-hour drive is all that separates you from one of the planet’s most breathtaking natural wonders.   
  2. Take a self-guided tour through the Desert Botanical Garden. One of Phoenix’s top attractions, the gardens showcase an impressive collection of over 50,000 desert plants.
  3. Take a hot air balloon ride. Another popular bucket list entry, hot air balloon rides, are readily available in Phoenix. The lifts provide breathtaking views of the Sonoran Desert, the Tonto National Forest and the Superstition Mountains.   
  4. Take a hike. Phoenix’s rugged terrain and beautiful vistas make it a top hiking destination amongst outdoor enthusiasts. Phoenix has everything from easy, serene half-hour hikes to more adventurous and hazardous trails.
  5. Sign up for a Jeep tour. Looking for an exciting way to explore the desert? Consider a Jeep tour. You’ll cover plenty of ground and learn about Phoenix’s landscape, wildlife and plant life along the way.
  6. Visit the Pueblo Grande Museum and Archeological Park. This cultural and historical site showcases the ancient Hohokam civilization through artifacts, exhibits and a fascinating reconstructed prehistoric village.
  7. Take a day trip to world-renowned Sedona. Sedona’s gorgeous red rocks, vast canyons, and reputation for spiritual transformation draw curious visitors worldwide. A mere two-hour drive from Phoenix, it is absolutely worth your time. 
  8. Explore your wild side at the Phoenix Zoo. This popular attraction boasts a mix of over 3,000 domestic and exotic animals. Visitors enjoy unique experiences with animals through interactive activities like feeding giraffes and live animal shows.
  9. Enjoy some eye candy at the Phoenix Art Museum. More than 20,000 works of art on display at the museum, which hosts exciting special events and houses trendy, temporary exhibits.
  10. Race through the desert on an ATV. If you’re an adrenaline junkie, this is one of the best ways to get your heart rate up in Phoenix. Exploring the desert’s rugged hills and rocky trails on one of these bad boys is about as exciting as it gets!

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