Popular culture portrays moving to the suburbs as boring and unoriginal. However, with the difficulties of city life many people are still moving to the suburbs. The increased space, lower cost of living, lower crime rates, and better schools are all major reasons the suburbs remain popular. However, there are certainly some downsides to moving to suburbs as well. Here are a few things you can expect when moving to the suburbs.
1. A Longer Commute
If you still work in the city, commuting from the suburbs will probably take up a larger chunk of your day. Whether you take a train or drive, commutes from the suburbs can sometimes take well over an hour each way. According to the Washington Post commutes that were greater than 90 minutes grew by 8% between 2014-2015. Longer commutes can lead to increased stress and take time away from family bonding.
2. Less to Do
No matter what suburb you move to, you’ll never have the same opportunities for cultural enrichment that you did in the city. While some suburbs offer art galleries and small museums, most cannot compare to the endless cultural opportunities offered by a major city. Instead of weekend museum trips, you may be spending more time at movie theaters. Although you can still make trips to the big city, it will be much more of an ordeal than it used to be. When you move to the suburbs, try to come up with more ways to create your own fun.
3. More Space
Perhaps the most common reason people leave urban centers is to have more space. The idea of a multiple bedroom home and a backyard can be very appealing to someone used to a concrete jungle. Additionally, if you’re moving from an apartment to a house in the suburbs, you’ll no longer have to worry about noisy upstairs neighbors. However, the increased space will also create more work to keep your living space neat and orderly.
4. Increased Interaction with Neighbors
Although you may live further away from your neighbors in the suburbs, you’ll probably be talking to them more. City dwellers tend to go to great lengths to keep to themselves. On the subway, on the street, or in an apartment complex you may pass by a person dozens of times without a peep. In contrast, suburbanites are usually much more talkative with neighbors. Whether it’s to invite you to the neighborhood block party or to tell you to mow your lawn, suburban neighbors have no qualms about striking up a conversation.
5. More Driving
Many city residents don’t need to own a car. In a large city public transportation, taxis, ride sharing, and walking can get you most places. However, those modes of transportation will be much more limited in the suburbs. Additionally, schools, restaurants, and shops will all be more spread out than in a city. As a result, most suburbanites own cars. While the upkeep costs can be burdensome, owning a car can create a new sense of freedom. Instead of having to wait on others to take you somewhere, you can decide to go anywhere at any time.
While there are certainly positive and negative aspects of moving to the suburbs, ultimately it’s a personal decision. If you value the frenzy of city life, the suburbs may not be for you. On the other hand, if you need more space and better schools, the suburbs could be perfect for you.