Americans are well-known for constantly packing up their bags and seeking out greener pastures. While Texas and Washington are popular picks, Oklahoma often falls to the wayside.
As it stands, there are several reasons to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma. While not as glamorous as other cities, this location is becoming a sleeper hit for several reasons. If you’re wondering if it’s possible to enjoy a better work-life balance or live somewhere more affordable, read on.
We’ll list fifteen reasons to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma. All the basics will be covered so you can make the most informed possible decision on the next stage of your life.
But before continuing on, check out these helpful pre-move resources –
- Best interstate movers – The moving industry is full of shady players. With so much at stake, hiring a top-rated long-distance mover with verified customer reviews is imperative
- Moving cost calculator – Talk about a great budgeting tool. Just enter your move dates, origin and destination cities, and the estimated size of your move, and the magic algorithms will do the rest
What are the Pros and Cons of Moving to Tulsa?
Let’s take a look at what the moving landscape looks like in the United States. It’s no mystery that the pandemic has slowed things down, but some trends continue on.
According to recent data, major cities such as New York City are experiencing apartment vacancy highs of nearly 4%. General attitudes toward big-city living have been shifting over the years due to several factors:
- rise of remote work
- high rent
- student loan debt
As such, small and mid-size cities are starting to fill the gap for today’s workers, students, and/or families. These locations provide enough hustle and bustle for city lovers while still being friendly to fans of more rural areas. Living in Tulsa, Oklahoma is quickly rising to the top as a go-to destination for remote workers, retirees, and university returnees.
The Benefits of Tulsa, Oklahoma
Stepping outside the box of traditional moving destinations will pay off handsomely. Tulsa, Oklahoma is fast becoming the go-to option for movers who need a more supportive location.
Sunny, Agreeable Weather Nearly Year-Round
What is the weather like in Tulsa? It’s actually pretty nice! While there is a major downside to the Midwest climate, we’ll explore that more below.
On a day-to-day level, Oklahoma has a consistently sunny and temperate climate. You’ll still get to experience four seasons, of course, though you should expect variance in humidity. The West is arider, while the East is wetter.
Consistently Low Cost of Living
The United States is facing several economic issues. Not only are apartments more expensive than they’ve ever been, but food prices are also hiking up due to supply chain issues.
The comparatively low cost of living in Oklahoma will prove a major source of interest for most movers. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Oklahoma’s biggest city is below $1,000. Meanwhile, the average rent for a studio apartment rarely hits above $700.
Tulsa is the second-largest city in Oklahoma, with even lower prices across the board. Expect to pay between $700 to $1,100 depending on the size and location of your apartment. Grocery costs are also on the lower side, with no shortage of healthy markets to choose from, so you’ll have no problem-saving money.
Broad Variety of Job Opportunities
While jobs are increasingly losing location dependence, you may still have a position that requires you to commute to work. Tulsa is home to not just lower rental prices, but quite a few job opportunities.
Oklahoma used to be nicknamed the ‘oil capital for the world’. To this day, the oil and energy sector remains very lucrative for many. The state’s unemployment rate is lower than the national average of 6%, hovering at 4% for several years in a row. Even if you don’t work in oil and energy, you still have room for growth in the agricultural and technology sectors.
Speaking of which…
Friendly to Independent Contractors and/or Small Businesses
What’s better than a thriving real estate market? A thriving real estate market that’s paired with several tax incentives for small businesses.
Entrepreneurship has been the calling card of the Tulsa area for the past several years. The competition for good housing and startup locations hits that sweet spot between varied and low-cost. While many of the most desired spots are smack dab in the middle of metropolitan areas, there are some quiet neighborhoods you can set up shop in.
Modern and Accessible Public Transportation System
American transportation ranges from pretty good to pretty bad. Thankfully, Tulsa leans hard toward the former with its modern, accessible public transportation system.
High school students are provided free public transit Monday through Friday in accordance with their school schedule. Several key improvements have also been made to the infrastructure to ensure transportation runs longer and moves quicker.
Strong Sense of Community, Especially for Families
Do you want a city that has a warm, small-town feel…without the small-town boredom? Tulsa provides a balancing act between the hustle of a big city without losing its sense of community.
This charm is easily felt with its plethora of extracurricular activities and day trip locations for children. Your family can swing by the Tulsa Zoo on the weekend or relax at Woodward Park. If you’re an artistic person, consider the next point…
Varied and Thriving Arts and Entertainment Scene
New York City and Los Angeles aren’t the only big cities with a memorable art scene. Tulsa continues to make waves with its eclectic art districts and entertainment scenes.
Museum aficionados will love the Gilcrease Museum and the Philbrook Museum Of Art. If you’re eager to start seeing shows again, look no further than the Tulsa Performing Arts Center and the Brady Theater. Lastly, the Tulsa Botanic Garden is a showstopper for nature and flower fans.
This mid-sized city regularly sees concerts, conventions, and festivals every year. One way or another, you’ll be artistically fulfilled once you set up roots in Tulsa.
The Downsides of Tulsa, Oklahoma
There’s no such thing as a perfect city. While Tulsa is a well-rounded location that goes against the grain of America’s economic struggles, it still has a few downsides to keep in mind.
High Crime Rate Compared to Similarly-Sized Cities
Is Tulsa a safe place to live? Unfortunately not. Compared to similarly-sized cities, Tulsa tends to rank top ten lists for the highest rates of crime in the country.
More specifically, the average person living in Tulsa has a one out of the ninety-one chance of becoming a victim of violent crime. Physical assault is the most common crime, followed closely by robbery.
Flat Terrain and Lack of Biodiversity
Are you a fan of beaches, forests, and rivers? You’ll be left wanting in Tulsa, Oklahoma: this state is well-known for being quite flat and hot.
Oklahoma is primarily composed of prairies, plains, and…more plains. The lack of variety can prove frustrating for movers who are used to more colors breaking up their field of vision. While you can still enjoy the view of the beautiful Arkansas River cutting through Tulsa, you won’t have many other water vistas.
High Chances of Extreme Storms and Tornadoes
While the West Coast is still struggling under endless wildfires, the Midwest is better known for its extreme storms and tornadoes.
Oklahoma is located right next to Kansas and overlaps a large area known as ‘Tornado Alley. It’s estimated around 1,000 to 1,200 tornadoes occur in the United States annually, with most of them in this location. While most tornadoes barely form a complete funnel, a few reach levels that can decimate entire neighborhoods.
High Sales Tax
While the city is still very entrepreneur and startup-friendly, there are still a few caveats. The sales tax of Tulsa is a little high at 8.517%.
Compare this to the sales tax of Texas, which is just 6.25%.
Few Opportunities for Education-Based Careers
The education landscape of Oklahoma is a troubled one. While the University Of Tulsa and Tulsa Community College offers competitive degrees, the K-12 education system has been struggling for years.
Oklahoma currently ranks the seventh least educated state in the country. This data was accrued by gathering up the number of degree holders that call the state home, as well as test scores and education spending.
What are the Best Places to Live in Tulsa?
Tulsa is a decently sized city, so you’ll have the pick of the litter when you move. Narrowing down your choices should include details such as budget, lifestyle, safety, education, and job opportunities.
Best Locations for Families with Children
Are you raising children? Perhaps you’re expecting and you want to know your neighborhood will be able to accommodate your new life.
Family-centric neighborhoods vary widely in Tulsa, but we have a few good places to start.
Riverview Historic District is Scenic and Classic
This idyllic, old-fashioned neighborhood is extremely attractive to many families. The sense of history is palpable as you walk through shaded streets filled with hundred-year-old homes.
This location is also located next to several K-12 schools, making it highly convenient.
Jenks is a Quiet and Rural Haven
Do you want to keep the big city in your backyard? Jenks provides families with a quiet, rural haven to raise their children.
This suburban area is a prime location for working professionals and families with young kids, located right next to schools and a slew of beautiful parks.
Best Locations for Remote Workers
Being able to work remotely has opened up a whole new world for today’s workers. Ideal locations should be low-cost and highly walkable to help you save as much money as possible.
Brookside is a Shoe-In for Remote Workers
Remote work locations don’t get much more ideal than Brookside. This neighborhood recently offered up an incentive program offering $10,000 to remote workers who want to relocate to Tulsa.
More specifically, Tulsa Remote is a remote work program that pays for relocation expenses and monthly stipends to help workers transition smoothly. Considering this neighborhood is a bastion of art and culture, this program is icing on the cake. Expect to enjoy a slew of art galleries, small boutiques, and local restaurants.
Bixby is Affordable and Peaceful
Do you want to settle down somewhere and really put your nose to the grind? Consider Bixby for your remote work venture while living in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
This relaxing location has enough parks, coffee shops, and walkability to make your stay very comfortable. According to many online reviews, Tulsa residents are friendly and accommodating to newcomers.
Best Locations for Artists
Are you an illustrator, photographer, or designer? Enriching your craft is best done with a creative, stimulating environment.
Pearl District is a Rapidly Evolving Creative Hub
The name of this neighborhood is reason enough to consider it for your new stomping grounds. This location has seen a significant revival over the past few years, birthing cafes, galleries, and farmers markets.
Downtown Tulsa is an Art Deco Paradise
Look no further than Downtown Tulsa to scratch your creative itch. This neighborhood is brimming with iconic Art Deco-styled buildings and monuments.
What Should I do Before Moving to Tulsa?
Just like any other move, it’s imperative you plan ahead as much as possible. The pandemic has thrown a few monkey wrenches into a common process.
Here’s a series of basic steps to help you prepare for your move to Tulsa, Oklahoma.
- Start budgeting your move from the ground-up
- Choose your moving service or moving method
- Sell or give away unwanted belongings
- Find a place to stay overnight if you’re moving long-distance
- Consider shipping the rest of your furniture or belongings
You don’t have to go to a big city to support your career or your family. There are more than enough reasons to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Tulsa is a shoe-in for working professionals, ambitious students, families with children, retirees, and artists craving creative inspiration. Tulsa boasts a lower cost of living than many similarly-sized cities, as well as key features such as reliable transportation and a welcoming attitude toward remote workers.
The downside to Tulsa is the high crime rate and the propensity for violent storms or tornadoes. You may also find the lack of environmental variety disappointing, especially if you come from a heavily forested or oceanic area.
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