Montgomery, Alabama – Your 2024 Moving Guide

Montgomery, the capital city of Alabama, is steeped in history and Southern charm. The city's landscape, characterized by rolling hills and picturesque river views, provides a beautiful backdrop for its vibrant cultural scene. From its historic downtown to the expanding suburbs, Montgomery is a city that both honors its past and embraces the future.

In recent years, Montgomery has experienced a renaissance, with revitalized neighborhoods and a booming arts scene. The city's downtown, once quiet after business hours, now buzzes with activity thanks to new restaurants, shops, and residential developments. This resurgence has attracted new residents, drawn by the city's rich history, affordable cost of living, and growing job market.

Mongomery, Alabama Government Building | Bellhop

What’s the vibe in Montgomery?

Montgomery's defining characteristics are rooted in its rich history and cultural diversity. As the site of pivotal events in the Civil Rights Movement, the city is a living museum of American history. Landmarks like the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church and the Rosa Parks Museum offer insights into the struggles and triumphs of the civil rights era.

Apart from its historical significance, Montgomery boasts a thriving arts scene. The Alabama Shakespeare Festival and the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts are prime examples of the city's commitment to the arts. Additionally, Montgomery's location along the Alabama River adds to its scenic beauty and offers recreational opportunities for residents and visitors alike.

Montgomery is currently experiencing a dynamic phase of demographic change. After periods of population decline in the late 20th century, the city is now seeing a steady influx of new residents. This growth is fueled by the city's affordable housing market and diverse economic opportunities. As people from various backgrounds and age groups discover Montgomery's appeal, the city is gradually becoming more culturally diverse.

Population growth in Montgomery has been steady, but moderate. This growth rate is reflective of a city that is evolving, but not at an overwhelming pace. This measured growth allows for sustainable development and helps maintain the city's character and charm.

Meet the neighbors – cities close to Montgomery

Prattville, located just to the north, is known for its golf courses and the Autauga Creek Walk. Wetumpka, to the northeast, offers a charming downtown area and the Wind Creek Casino. Auburn, home to Auburn University, is a vibrant college town with a strong sense of community. To the south lies Troy, a smaller city known for its university and annual Peanut Butter Festival. Each of these cities contributes to the diverse tapestry of the greater Montgomery area.

Top Five Neighborhoods in Montgomery, AL

Cloverdale: Known for its historic homes and tree-lined streets, Cloverdale is one of Montgomery's most picturesque neighborhoods. Average home prices in Cloverdale hover around the mid-$200,000 range. The neighborhood boasts popular restaurants like Vintage Year, known for its fine dining, and El Rey Burrito Lounge, a local favorite for Mexican cuisine.

Deer Creek: This is a family-friendly neighborhood with a mix of single-family homes and townhouses, averaging around $250,000. The neighborhood is close to dining options like Chappy's Deli and The Juicy Seafood.

Hampstead: A newer development, Hampstead combines modern living with a sense of community. Homes here average around $350,000. The neighborhood features amenities like the City Grill and The Tipping Point, a cozy bar and restaurant.

Old Cloverdale: Adjacent to Cloverdale, Old Cloverdale is rich in history and charm, with homes averaging in the low $200,000s. The neighborhood's charm is complemented by spots like Café Louisa for a casual bite and Filet & Vine for its renowned deli and wine selection.

Pike Road:Pike Road is an expanding area known for its newer homes and larger lots, with prices averaging around $300,000. Dining options include spots like Watershed and Pike Road BBQ.

Montgomery’s economy and job market

The job market in Montgomery is diverse and evolving. The city's unemployment rate generally hovers slightly above the national average, but job growth has been steady. Major industries in Montgomery include government, defense, manufacturing, and healthcare. The presence of Maxwell Air Force Base and state government offices are significant employment drivers. The average salary in Montgomery is competitive, reflecting the city's cost of living, which is lower than the national average.

Cost of living in Montgomery

Housing costs in Montgomery, Alabama, are notably lower than the national average, making it an attractive option for those seeking affordability. The housing market offers a diverse range of options, from historic homes in established neighborhoods to modern developments in suburban areas. The average price for a home in Montgomery is significantly less than the national average, with even the more upscale neighborhoods remaining relatively affordable. Renters will also find the market favorable, as rental prices for apartments and homes are quite reasonable compared to larger metropolitan areas. This affordability in housing extends to property taxes, which are also lower than many other parts of the country, further enhancing the appeal for both homeowners and investors.

Utilities and services in Montgomery are generally in line with the national average. Residents can expect to pay reasonable rates for essential services such as electricity, water, and gas. The city's climate, characterized by hot summers and mild winters, does lead to higher electricity costs during the summer months due to air conditioning usage. However, these costs are often offset by the lower heating bills in the winter. Internet and cable services are provided by several companies, offering competitive pricing and various package options. Waste disposal services in Montgomery are efficient and cost-effective, adding to the overall affordability of living in the city.

Groceries and foodcosts align closely with national averages. Montgomery has a good mix of local markets, national grocery chains, and discount stores, providing residents with a wide range of options to fit their budgets. Local produce is often more affordable, especially when purchased at farmers' markets or directly from local farms. Dining out in Montgomery can be as economical or as lavish as one chooses, with a variety of dining options ranging from affordable Southern eateries to more upscale restaurants. The diversity of food choices, including regional specialties, adds to the city's culinary appeal without significantly impacting the cost of living.

Transportationcosts in Montgomery are influenced by the city's layout and public transportation system. While public transit options exist, including bus services, many residents find it more convenient to own a car due to the city's spread-out nature. This reliance on personal vehicles can lead to higher transportation costs in terms of car payments, insurance, and maintenance. However, the cost of gasoline in Montgomery tends to be lower than the national average, which can help mitigate some of these expenses. For those using public transportation, the fares are reasonable, making it a cost-effective option for commuting within the city.

Healthcare costs in Montgomery are comparable to national averages. The city is home to several major hospitals and healthcare facilities, providing residents with access to a range of medical services. Health insurance premiums and out-of-pocket costs can vary widely depending on individual circumstances, but overall, residents find healthcare services in Montgomery to be accessible and reasonably priced. The presence of specialized medical centers and a variety of healthcare providers ensures that residents can receive quality care without excessive financial burden.

Entertainment in Montgomery offers a blend of affordability and variety. The city hosts numerous cultural and recreational activities, many of which are either free or have minimal charges. From visiting historical sites and museums to attending local festivals and community events, residents can enjoy a vibrant social life without spending excessively. Movie theaters, bowling alleys, and other entertainment venues offer standard pricing, and the city's nightlife, including bars and clubs, is lively yet affordable. Outdoor activities, such as parks and riverfront attractions, provide additional low-cost entertainment options.

Taxes in Montgomery are generally favorable compared to many other regions in the United States. Alabama has one of the lowest property tax rates in the nation, which benefits Montgomery homeowners. The state income tax is also relatively low, with a progressive rate that varies depending on income level. Sales tax in Montgomery is in line with the average for Alabama, which is higher than some states but is offset by the lower property and income taxes. This combination of tax rates contributes to the overall affordability and financial attractiveness of living in Montgomery.

Things to do in Montgomery, AL

Montgomery offers a wide range of attractions and activities. History enthusiasts will find no shortage of landmarks, including the Civil Rights Memorial and the Alabama State Capitol. For outdoor lovers, the Blount Cultural Park and Riverfront Park offer beautiful spaces for relaxation and recreation.

The city's nightlife and culinary scene are burgeoning, with establishments like The Alley downtown offering a mix of dining, entertainment, and shopping. For sports fans, the Montgomery Biscuits baseball games are a local favorite, providing family-friendly entertainment.

Schools in Montgomery, AL

The educational landscape in Montgomery is diverse, with a range of public and private schools. Generally, the schools in Montgomery are working towards improvement, with some districts standing out for their excellence. The best school districts include Pike Road City Schools, and Montgomery Public Schools in certain areas, both are known for their strong academic programs and extracurricular activities.

Crime in Montgomery, AL

The crime rate in Montgomery has seen fluctuations over the years, with efforts ongoing to reduce crime and enhance safety. Compared to nearby cities and the national average, Montgomery's crime rate is higher, but recent initiatives and community engagement are contributing to a downward trend in some types of crime.

Advantages to Living in Montgomery, AL

- Affordable cost of living compared to many other U.S. cities.

- Rich historical and cultural heritage offering unique educational and cultural experiences.

- Growing job market with opportunities in government, healthcare, and manufacturing.

- Proximity to natural attractions and a variety of recreational activities.

Disadvantages to Living in Montgomery, AL

- Higher crime rates compared to some nearby cities.

- Hot and humid summers can be uncomfortable for those not accustomed to Southern weather. (You’ll adjust, give it a year or so!)

- Public transportation options are limited, necessitating reliance on personal vehicles.

- Some areas of the city are still undergoing development and revitalization.

Making the move to Montgomery

And if you’re heading to Montgomery,****Bellhop can help you get there. We know moving is no one’s idea of a good time, and we’ve dedicated ourselves to figuring out how to make the experience as stress-free as humanly possible.

We have long distance service in Montgomery and local Montgomery movers for moves of any size and budget. We can help you with packing, storage, car shipping, junk removal and many other needs. And our flat rate pricing option ensures that you are not surprised by hidden fees on move day. Plus, our terrific customer support team is with you every step of the way. Tell us what you need, and we’ll do our best to find a way to make it happen.