Portland, Oregon


No matter what time of year I come here [to Portland], people always say the same thing: ‘It’s not usually like this" -Garrison Keillor

The Best Thing About Portland?

No “housing farms".

Portland neighborhoods were not built in clusters so you don’t see houses clumped together that look similar. The homes on a given block were often built in different time periods and in different styles. The results are genuinely charming and give or reinforce the idea that Portland is for free and independent thinkers.

Pros of living in Portland from a local:
-beautiful surroundings naturally and geographically; lots of outdoors stuff to do
-cost of living lower than larger cities (although housing has exploded now)
-laid back people
-great weather 6 months a year including summer

For more reviews of what living in Portland is like from locals check out: The Buzz

The Worst Thing About Portland?

Lack of diversity.

Portland is 78% white. And there’s a homelessness problem and a congestion problem (even though 7% of the population travels by bike). For an ultra-liberal city, lack of diversity and high volumes of homeless expose issues many cities contend with. In particular they are not alone on the homeless front. The West Coast from Seattle to San Diego wrestles with the same issue. Diversity is also tricky. Oregon is not diverse overall and once you head east of Portland the state is much more conservative than many would expect.

Here's the point of view of a local on the biggest con of living in Portland:
If you are planning to relocate or stay long term, be reallllllly ready for the gray weather. I’m a lifelong Oregonian and every year I have to remind myself that I won’t truly be warm or see the sun from ~ November - April

Lifestyle Of Portland

Perhaps no show in the history of television has so explicitly portrayed an exaggerated but pretty spot-on illustration of a city’s lifestyle than Portlandia. Groovy, grungy, smug, self-satisfied and utterly wonderful, this city is all about attempting to live differently and at least aspirationally better. What you do in Portland you tend to do intensely. Getting a good meal? You may not be dressed in a tuxedo but the ingredients will be locally grown. Ordering a cocktail in a local pub in your pajamas? Chances are the spirits, mixers and garnishes were brewed or distilled or grown in boutique fashion. People may go casually here but they take the things they do seriously.

Overall the lifestyle of the city involves a lot of outdoor behavior mixed with plenty of amazing food and craft beer and spirits at the end of the day. Some people live in densely urban neighborhoods and enjoy great walkscore experiences to crafty commercial districts and some pick rural-feeling neighborhoods from which they hide from the commercial scene and stick to their knitting. While there are plenty of people who move to Portland and live conventional suburban lifestyles for less than San Francisco or New York, why would you? Portland’s weird and that makes it great.

To see what's happening in Portland check out the calendar of events: https://www.travelportland.com/events/

Workstyle Of Portland

Portland, like a lot of the west coast, has a lot of tech. But the tech scene here feels more relaxed than San Francisco. That’s by design. If you pick Portland over SF for your startup you’re doing so because you prefer the more quirky vibe of the city (and lower costs), so your business will run accordingly. While we imagine many of the tech scenesters here might return to an office we imagine it simply will be a more chill choice. Coming in today? Cool. Staying home? Cool. Do your job and we’re copacetic.
Outside of tech Portland also has a big market for Athletic/Outdoor Gear – Hello, Nike. That Nike influence has attracted other brands like Adidas, Icebreaker, Keen among others. If you want to work in the outdoor gear business while experiencing the great outdoors, this is your city.
Finally, Portland has a huge healthcare workforce with four of the top ten employers in that industry. One of the consistent factors across the workforce is the high degree of education. These Portlanders went to school.

Why You Should Move Here Now?

Smaller than Seattle, more relaxed than San Francisco.

It’s green, there’s proximity to nature, there’s no sales tax (new Macbook anyone?) easy, breezy airport, a lot of big name employers in town and the summer is worth the winter.