Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Go to Bell

Philadelphia Skyline
Philadelphia Skyline
Rittenhouse Square, Downtown Philly
Rittenhouse Square, Downtown Philly
Philadelphia City Hall - Wintergarden
Philadelphia City Hall - Wintergarden



Sunny Days: 93
52100 Affordability
69100 Schools
57100 Diversity
60100 Safety

These are the toughest fans there are. They threw snowballs at Santa Claus. - Carol Vermeil/Paige Turco

The Best Thing About Philadelphia?

East Coast Energy on a Budget

It’s cheaper than NYC. It can be pretty rough and tumble in places, and in general, but it’s a big city. Compared to other big cities, Philly's housing is tremendously affordable. If you are willing to live in a neighborhood that is racially and economically mixed, you can find a 3-bedroom apartment for under $2,000. Houses can be found for under $100K in many of the city's neighborhoods, as well. The housing stock does tend to be older--but if you want to pay top dollar for a new condo in a hip neighborhood, you might pay around $300-400K.

Young people can live in Center City (Downtown) and take advantage of all the funky street festivals and pop-up beer gardens, art museums. The area near Olde City is a nice compromise between not horrendously expensive and relatively safe. Young families with some money can take advantage of some of the best private schools in the country. If you like Quaker schools, boy, are you in luck.

Here's a long-time transplanter on the pros of Philly:
So I'm a transplant and have lived here 10 years, renting the whole time, and will likely buy out somewhere in the suburbs within the next 2 years or so. Philly has some great neighborhoods: Fairmount, Cedar Park, Fishtown, Society Hill, Fitler Square,Queen's Village, Old City to name a few. Those will be expensive to buy in. Not as much as Boston but if you want a new construction particle board rowhome those usually go for at least 400k. Some neighborhoods, like Point Breeze and Brewerytown, are very up and coming and thus will be cheaper. But those neighborhoods will likely be more "block by block" and much much trashier.

Our public transit isn't bad. The MFL and the BSL will get you pretty much anywhere you want to go and then we have the trolleys and buses. This is persona opinion but if you like to eat it's imo that Philly smacks the shit out of Boston, food wise.

For more reviews of Philadelphia from locals check out: Reviews

The Worst Thing About Philadelphia?

The Attitude

There's really no getting around it; Philly's got attitude. You’ve likely heard the stories already. We’re not sure if it’s the winters or the sports teams or the potholes that cause people to have a little bit of a chip on their shoulders, but it’s there. Our advice? Don’t take it personally. Locals call it “character” and you’ll develop it too after a few years here. Keep in mind it’s not like people are passing you on the street randomly telling you where you can shove it (unless you’re crazy enough to wear a Cowboys jersey and, frankly you’d deserve to be told off). You’ve got to earn the kindness at the heart of Philly residents and we don’t think that’s necessarily a bad thing.

Here's a 10-year transplanter on the cons of living in Philly:
For some negatives, the trash is a big one if that bothers you. The wage tax is super shitty if you live within city limits. It can be dangerous in certain areas but as one user here use to say, don't start shit won't be shit so as long as you're aware of your surroundings you'll be unlikely to run into trouble. We have gangs of dirt bikers and ATV riders who terrorize streets when the weather is nice. Schools aren't very good, but we do have some wonderful universities in the area.

Lifestyle of Philadelphia

Philadelphia is a tried and true northeastern city. It’s dense, gritty, and passionate. Pros are that it’s super diverse (there was an insanely high rate of immigration from about 2000-2016), gay-friendly, and sports-crazy. With four professional sports teams, the city creates a huge camaraderie by rooting for the home team. And if you aren’t loyal to local teams? Be prepared to practice your sports worship in private. Because of the makeup of the city, you can live without a car, which is a plus for a lot of people. Philly is a diverse city both in terms of the people and the areas. A lot of different people live here and that’s because there’s an area that’ll suit each person.

Workstyle of Philadelphia

Philadelphia’s big industries include government, financial services, health care, biotech, and information technology. Financial services are huge and Philadelphia is also home to one of the largest health education and research centers in the US, which makes sense when you take into account that there are a ton of universities and higher education institutions in the area. The largest employers are the local city government, University of Pennsylvania, and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. There are also a ton of headquarters in the city like Comcast, Cigna, Urban Outfitters, Pep Boys, and more. Along with these industries, tourism is also a huge draw to Philadelphia and a huge part of the economic structure of the city. Just in Independence National Historical Park, which includes the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, there are 42 million domestic tourists, yearly.

Why You Should Move Here Now?

Brooklyn But For Real

There has been a fair amount of Millennial movement from NYC to Philly. A good way to think of Philly is as "Brooklyn lite." Mixed neighborhoods: some fabulous ethnic neighborhoods, some gentrified, people who are in a hurry, and rude and obnoxious. A lot of cursing. If this appeals to you, it can be had for much less money than Brooklyn these days. If you want access to this but prefer to go home to the suburbs, the Main Line suburbs (fed by commuter trains) have a lot to offer.

Neighborhoods in Philadelphia

View All

The Area

Philadelphia is the largest city in Pennsylvania and the sixth most populated city in the US. If you’ve never been to PA before, just know it’s a lot wider than you think. You can be on the west side of the state near Pittsburgh and be close to Ohio and West Virginia, but the east side is just a quick drive to D.C., New York, or New Jersey. Philadelphia is situated across the Delaware river from New Jersey, in the southeastern corner of the state, smack-dab in the middle of New York and D.C. The city itself can feel dense if you’re not used to that sort of thing. Like LA has more people, but it’s much more spread out than Philly and it can be shocking. Philadelphia is much closer in relation to other northeastern cities like NYC and D.C.

Spruce Hill

College Students

Philadelphia is like a giant playground for college students.Away from home for the first time, especially for those from the burbs, students will be amazed at how much there is to do. There are museums, libraries, parks, sporting events, restaurants, and a great amount of nightlife. The universities and colleges in Philly are a part of the city itself, which gives students a good chance to explore the city after classes or on weekends. We suggest Spruce Hill if you’re going to Penn. It has a dense feel with a ton of rental opportunities, but there are also a ton of bars, restaurants, coffee shops, and parks.

  • Spruce Hill
  • University City
  • Cedar Park

East Passyunk

Young Professionals

There is a ton to love about Philly, but you really hit the jackpot if you’re a young professional (and single!). One of the neighborhoods that’s recently been seeing a lot of love is East Passyunk (pronounced “Pashyunk,” obviously). This neighborhood sits on one of the only diagonal streets cutting across Philadelphia’s carefully planned grid-system. And that’s kind of the base of where you start to understand Passyunk: it’s a bit off, in a good way. The seriously walkable main avenue is lined with indie boutiques, bars, cafes, and some of the best spots to eat in the city. Don’t be put off if you tell someone you’re moving here and they tell you to go to “the shady deli by the CVS.” You’ll get the absolute best hoagie you’ve ever had and for only $3.50 you’ll be thanking us later.

  • East Passyunk
  • Fishtown
  • Washington Square West

Graduate Hospital

Young Families

Philadelphia is a steal for young families looking to settle down for a while. Locals know it’s way better than Boston and NYC (or God forbid, New Jersey) and you still get an amazing city. Graduate Hospital is a great neighborhood for anyone in their 20s or 30s and wanting to start a family. Locals will tell you that the area was “rough” about 10 years ago, but the people who have recently moved here love the area and intend to stay! If you visit you’ll see a ton of people out with a dog and a stroller, people out in Julian Abele park just hanging out or listening to live music, and friends enjoying dinner and drinks along South.

  • Graduate Hospital
  • Rittenhouse Square
  • North Broad

Lower Merion

Established Families

There is no shortage of great suburbs in Philly. If you can afford it, the Main Line suburbs are the ones you want to start with. There are gorgeous homes, good schools, and trains that get you downtown, easily. We suggest Lower Merion, which is a Main Line suburb and has fantastic schools and colleges (a sore spot for downtown-ers). In this area you’ll get relatively low taxes, a safe area for the kids, and a decent commute by car or train.

  • Lower Merion
  • Gladwyne
  • Penn Valley

Rittenhouse Square

Empty Nesters

Philly is a great, walkable city for someone looking to have a bustling, but enjoyable retirement. There are a ton of great things to do year round and the large tourism culture ensures your family will have a ton to see when they visit. Check out Rittenhouse for a sophisticated city feel. It has well-manicured streets, beautiful stately row homes, and gorgeous well-kept public parks. Situated near the river and sandwiched between other bustling downtown Philly neighborhoods, you can easily walk to any other spot to get out and enjoy the city.

  • Rittenhouse Square
  • Midtown Village
  • Fairmount