Moving To Bellingham? 12 Reasons Why You Should – A Complete Guide to Living in Bellingham in 2018.
Moving to Bellingham – 12 Reasons Why You Should!
Why on earth would anyone ever consider moving to the rainy State?
If you’re considering moving to Bellingham then you’d better read this article first! After all, you want to make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into, right?
Now I’m going to be straight with you…I’m biased…Like REALLY biased. Why? Because I freakin LOVE this town. But what else can you expect from someone who grew up in the best place on earth? 😏 That said, I will do my best to be as fair as possible. But no promises.
The good thing about Bellingham is that there’s a lot to do and just about anyone can fit in here. The bad thing is sometimes people don’t know where to start, which is why I wrote this guide about moving to Bellingham. It’s my goal for you to know all the ins and outs of Bellingham so that when you inevitably decide moving to Bellingham is the right choice for you and your family, you’ll come thanking me. 😎
So, you’re thinking of moving to Bellingham?
If you haven’t spent much time here, then you’d probably think there’s nothing but constant rain and bearded men who ride bikes and drink micro beer all day long. But that’s simply not the case (Well…mostly). In fact, it doesn’t rain 24/7 and summers are actually quite nice. Think of it this way, we get a good healthy balance of weather. But don’t worry, It’s mostly sunny.
Alright, now to the important stuff.
The City of Bellingham is the last major city before the Washington coastline meets the Canadian border. It is at the center of a uniquely picturesque area with beautiful Mount Baker as it’s backdrop, and offers a vast variety of recreational, cultural and educational activities. Bellingham’s historic character is remarkably well-preserved, with a large number of historic buildings downtown, in Fairhaven’s Historic District, and in nearby neighborhoods.
Voted one of the 16 Best Places To Live by Outside Magazine in 2016 and one of The West’s Best Places To Live by Sunset Magazine, this college town is a ferry away from prime sea kayaking and whale-watching in the San Juan Islands, and is full of beautiful parks for hiking, swimming and fishing.
In addition to being beautiful and full of culture and recreational activities, Bellingham is also home to six breweries and brewpubs. The annual Bellingham Beer Week draws hundreds of people for 10 days of events at breweries, bars and restaurants. There’s a reason Bellingham was #8 on The 10 Best Beer Cities by www.Livability.com.
Bellingham is also home to the famous annual Ski to Sea Race. Held on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend every year, it is a 93.5-mile, 8-person relay featuring downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, running, canoeing, bike riding and kayaking. This race draws nearly 500 teams of competitors, some with Olympic pedigrees, and at the finish line is the annual Fairhaven Festival, with live music, food and crafts booths, beer garden and more. For more information on Ski To Sea, visit http://skitosea.com. Bellingham is a very beautiful and unique city, always has great homes for sale and is a beautiful place to live.
Semi Boring Stats
- Population in Bellingham: 87,574 People
- Unemployment rate In Bellingham: 4.1%
- Median Home Price In Bellingham: $355,000
- Median Family Income In Bellingham: $74,460
1. Bellingham Is Simply Beautiful
The views here are breathtaking. You have the ocean on one side of you and Mt. Baker on the other, while simultaneously being surrounded by beautiful evergreen trees. If you aren’t a fan of beautiful views then you’re straight out of luck, because Bellingham is gorgeous.
For Pete’s sake, just look at these pictures!
Here’s one I just took the other day while driving down Chuckanut.
And here’s another one while driving up to Mt. Baker.
But here’s the thing, we don’t only have great scenery, we also have beautiful architecture. Fairhaven and downtown Bellingham are just chock full of beautiful buildings that you just can’t help but admire.
2. Lots Of Great Jobs
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistic the unemployment rate in Bellingham is only 4.1%. There are lots of major employers that make moving to Bellingham a great opportunity. The economy is thriving with new construction, several refineries (such as BP), major technology companies (like Faithlife), and even St. Joseph Hospital, employing over 2,750 people.
We are also a large tourism destination, which means there are tons of restaurants, retail stores, and tour companies that always seem to need people. Plus, with Vancouver just across the border, we get a lot of Canadians coming to spend their money here too.
A healthy job market is also a great thing for home values. If you own a home in Bellingham, and if we keep growing and growing like we have been, you’ll be on the winning end of a nice big chunk of equity. Plus, with Bellingham, Ferndale, and even Lynden attracting families like never before, due to great schools, low home prices, lots of shopping, restaurants etc. Home prices will only continue to rise.
3. We Have KILLER Restaurants Here In Bellingham
If you are hungry for seafood, we have the freshest! If you’re hungry for gourmet wood fired pizza, ours is the best! If you’re craving that perfect burger, we’ve got it. If you’re looking for a classic American drive-in restaurant, we have it. Or maybe you’re in the mood for organic farm to table with a French twist, well, you’re in luck!
It doesn’t matter what you’re hungry for, we got it and by golly it’s good! The food we have here is simply amazing and it’ll take a lifetime to try it all!
Some of my favorite Restaurants include:
La Fiamma: Wood fired pizza, amazing beer, and gourmet salads! Need I say more?
EAT: You want that farm to table restaurant that I was talking about that includes a French twist? Yeah, they’re awesome!
Boomers: This place is a classic. Great place to take the kids for a good ol’ fashion American Drive in.
If you’d like a list to some of my favorite restaurants, then click here: 9 Bellingham Restaurants You Simply MUST Try!
4. We Have The Best Beer and Delicious Wine
Beer is a very important part of our culture, and if you’re moving to Bellingham then you’re in for a treat! If there’s one thing people in Bellingham love, it’s their beer. Seriously, if you’re a beer fanatic then Bellingham will feel like home! We have more breweries than we know what to do with. In fact, we have more breweries per capita then both Seattle and Portland. Really!
Not only that but we have events about beer such as April Brews Day, A crazy thing called The Hamster Crawl, we even have the Bellingham Bay Beer Cruise. Or if you’re feeling really crazy, you can join Tap Trails! I’ll let you go figure out what that is. 😏
Some of my favorite Breweries include:
Wander: This place is just neato burrito. It’s tucked away in a corner, but if you’re able to find it, you’re in for a real treat. My favorite is their Uncommon Common. Try it!
Boundary Bay: These kids are far from being the new kids on the block. They’ve been around as long as I can remember and are a staple of Bellingham. Their Scotch Ale is my go to.
Aslan: This place is HOT. Only a few years old, this brewery is doing something right! I Love their Porter.
5. We have AMAZING Coffee
Coffee is a very important part of my daily life. So much so that I am fairly addicted and can’t start my day without it. Sure, I tell myself I can quit whenever I want but you and I both know that’s a lie…
Sorry… got a little carried away haha.
Bellingham folk love their coffee just as much as they love their beer. So much so that they compare Starbucks to McDonalds. If fact, good luck finding anyone with a Starbucks in their hand. In Bellingham we drink Woods Coffee, a local coffee company that has more coffee shops in rock throwing distance then Starbucks does in down town Seattle. Not to mention all the boutique coffee shops that we have in town.
The point is, if you love good coffee, we’ve got you covered.
6. Bellingham Is Very Friendly
I’ve always had a job that involved meeting a lot of people, which is awesome because I love meeting new people (I know I know, classic extrovert!). Over the years I’ve noticed a trend, whether I’m talking to someone from out of state or out of country, they all say the same thing, “People here are so nice!” and it’s true! People will literally stop whatever it is they’re doing to help a complete stranger out. If you’re walking by people on the streets, they’ll smile and say “good morning!”. Heck, you could literally start up a meaningful conversation with anyone!
Community here is important, and for the most part, everyone here in Bellingham is kind of like one big family! Sure you have a few sour grapes (what city doesn’t?), but for the most part, people here really care.
If you decide moving to Bellingham is right for you and your family, then you can rest easy knowing that you’ll be coming into a community that truly cares.
7. We Have Lots Activities
You’ll be hard pressed to be bored in the great city of Bellingham. There is always something exciting going on!
We have amazing ocean and lake kayaking, hundreds of beautiful hikes, some of the best mountain biking in the nation, swimming, waterslides, skiing, snowboarding, camping, and so much more. Think of it this way, we’re a very active community, so if you can do it outside we probably have it.
Now, if you’re looking for something a little less physical, don’t worry, we’ve got you! We have dozens of community events like Sea to Ski which is a massive race that the entire county takes part in. Or the Washington State Fair in Lynden. We also have some amazing farmers markets that are always a blast to go to, plus so much more.
8. Location Location Location
Let’s be real here, location is EVERYTHING! Which makes Bellingham King! Why, you ask? Because we’re literally in the middle of everything. To the North you have Vancouver BC and to the South you have Seattle WA. Both an hour and a half away and if desired, you could make a round trip to both cities and still be home in time for dinner. In fact, I’ve done it several times.
And let’s not forget that Bellingham is still located in a beautiful area surrounded by evergreens, mountains, and the ocean.
Not to mention Bellingham’s real estate market is on fire right now! (in a good way)
Which brings me to my next point.
9. Moving to Bellingham Is A Smart Investment
Now, you might hear of doom and gloom from your friend’s uncle about how we’re heading for another crash and now’s a terrible time to buy. But that’s simply not true and who ever says that hasn’t studied the market. Home prices are up, and that’s okay. Home prices will always go up, sure they may dip every now and then, but they always go up. Just look at this chart projecting where the market was heading prior to the 2008 crash. Predictions from 20 years ago show us right where we’re supposed to be even with the 2008 crash.
Now you might be wondering, “ok cool, so what’s going on with Bellingham?” Well, we’re in high demand, and will be for a long time. We have thousands of people relocating from California, Texas, even Seattle. Homes here are affordable for a lot of people and they really like the area (which is why I wrote this article). As a result, this will drive up home prices and will continue to do so for a long time. Now’s a good time to buy, because I’m willing to bet that your $400,000 house will be worth $1.4M someday.
10. Our Schools
Bellingham is known for having some of the top-rated schools in the State. Whether you’re looking for K through 12, or you want your kids to go to a great university like WWU or trade school like BTC, we’ve got you covered!
11. The Communities: We Have The Perfect Neighborhood For You
Regardless of your personality or preference, whether you want old, new, modern or in the woods. We have the perfect neighborhood for you.
Home to over 20 communities, you have Neighborhoods like Fairhaven, one of Bellingham’s original settlements filled with beautiful Victorian homes overlooking the ocean. Not to mention, with the old Fairhaven city within walking distance, there is no place like it.
On the other side of the city you have Cordata, with new modern, green built homes. If you like not having a yard to maintain and solar panels on your roof, then you should check out some of the awesome homes out here!
Or maybe you’re more interested in a classic neighborhood with narrow tree-lined streets and mature landscaping. In which case the Columbia Neighborhood, one of Bellingham’s finest, might be perfect for you.
For a full list of our Bellingham neighborhoods, click here.
12. The Theaters!
Of course, we have a new IMAX and RPX theaters, over at the Barkley cinema, but that’s not all. We have a TON of local entertainment that’ll have you coming back for more!
We have places like the Bellingham Theater Guild which puts on talented local plays. Pickford Film Center, which plays classic movies and even has a full beer and wine bar. Then you got the Firehouse Performing Arts Center which is just more goodness. And of course, you have Mount Baker Theater which has everything under the sun!
My favorite, though, is The Upfront Theater. If you’ve ever watched Whose Line Is It Anyways you’ve likely seen Ryan Stiles. And if you’re a fan of the show than you’re in luck! The Upfront Theater is Ryan Styles’ personal comedy and improve theater.If you ever want a good laugh, then you’ve got to come see one of their shows.
Bonus Tip: Bellingham Is Very Dog Friendly
Seriously, just go walk around Fairhaven or grab a cup of joe at Boulevard Woods and you’ll see just how dog friendly Bellingham is. Heck, we even have dog friendly bars where you can grab a local pint, relax, and let your dog roam free with other pooches. Just another reason why moving to Bellingham is such a good idea.
Final Thoughts on Moving to Bellingham.
Whether you’re moving to Bellingham or one of its neighboring communities, you’ll be able to rest easy knowing you’re living in one of the greatest places on earth. Today we’ve gone over several reasons as to why you should consider moving to Bellingham, and I think you’ll be hard pressed to find a better place to live. Considering how safe it is here, you have unlimited things to do, not to mention just how beautiful it is. While this guide isn’t perfect and doesn’t mention everything Bellingham has to offer, I honestly believe you’ll love it here.
If you’re seriously considering moving to Bellingham, then please feel free to reach out to me. I have special offers I can give you that are exclusive to RE/MAX Agents. These include discounted hotels, Virtual Reality Home Tours, and More.
Still have questions about a potential move to Bellingham? You can get in touch with me HERE, or call or text me at 360 972 3227. I can provide you with whatever information you’re looking for or, at the very least, point you in the right direction.
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Here are some other links you might like:
- 9 Must Try Restaurants In Bellingham
- 6 Best Parks In Bellingham
- Homes For Sale In Bellingham WA
- What’s My Bellingham Home Worth? (Free, Fast, Updated Monthly!)
- Ultimate Home Buyers Guide
- Why Moving To Bellingham Is A Great Idea
- How To Buy A Home With Virtual Reality
- Get In Touch With Tommy
About the Author: The article above on Moving to Bellingham was provided by Tommy Mutchler an authority on Bellingham real estate and a leader in the field of real estate blogging. Tommy loves to use blogging, social media marketing, and all things tech to serve his clients and grow his real estate business. Tommy is a member of WCAR and is a Certified Negotiator with his MCNE. He’s also helped hundreds of people buy or sell their home. It is certain that Tommy will be able to help you achieve your real estate needs goals.
Are you thinking of selling your home? I’m very good at marketing homes to sell quickly and for more money. Check out my home sellers guide HERE! If you’re a first-time home buyer then you’ll be in good hands – check out my video just for first time buyers. I’ve helped countless first-time home buyers through the entire process of buying that first home! Are you a veteran home buyer? Well than don’t worry because I can help you too! I have a real passion for helping people buy and sell homes here in Washington and I would love to connect with you! 😎
Thank you for reading Moving to Bellingham – 12 Reasons why you Should!