Moving to Akron
Welcome to our comprehensive guide designed to usher you into the heart of Akron, a city unassumingly nestled in Ohio, brimming with charm and charisma. Like an undiscovered gem, Akron beckons with its intriguing blend of history, culture, and scenic landscapes, offering recent transplants a novel yet welcoming home. Dive into this guide, let's tantalize your curiosity, and nudge your adventurous spirit as we unravel all you need to know about relocating to Akron, Ohio--a city that's quietly captivating and refreshingly surprising.
What to Know Before Moving to Akron
1. Rubber City History
Everyone knows Akron as the "Rubber Capital of the World", right? But here's something you might not have been aware of: Akron was the birthplace of companies that would grow to be global giants, such as Goodyear, Goodrich, and Firestone! From walking through the once bustling rubber factories to visiting the Goodyear World of Rubber Museum, Akron is a city rich in history and innovation. Whether you are a history buff or not, the story of Akron's rubber pedigree is sure to pique your interest.
2. Exciting Downtown Living
Downtown Akron may not be Times Square, but don't let that fool you. The downtown area has seen significant investment in recent years, transforming into an exciting and vibrant spot for locals and visitors alike. With a mix of trendy restaurants, eclectic boutiques, art galleries, and plenty of entertainment venues, downtown Akron is the perfect place for those craving a taste of city life in the heart of Northeast Ohio.
3. Parks and Trails Galore
Calling all outdoor enthusiasts! Akron is your playground. Just a stone's throw from downtown, you'll find the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, brimming with hiking trails, foliage-filled vistas and historic sites. Not to mention the beautiful Ohio and Erie Canal Towpath which runs through downtown Akron and offers an exceptional trail for biking, hiking, and wildlife spotting. What better way to unwind after a busy day than a walk in nature?
4. The Mystery of Signal Tree
Here's an intriguing local secret; Akron is home to a mysterious tree known as the Signal Tree. Located in Cascade Valley Metro Park, this 300+ year old Bur Oak has unnatural bends in its branches, which local legend attributes to being manipulated by Native Americans as a signpost or landmark. While historians have not been able to confirm this, the tree remains a captivating local curiosity and a must-visit.
5. Festivities Throughout the Year
Akron is filled with celebratory spirit, hosting numerous fun and diverse festivals throughout the year. From the famed National Hamburger Festival to the rich cultural experience of the Global Village Festival, there's always a reason to celebrate. And don't forget about the annual Rubber Duck Derby, where thousands of rubber ducks race down the Ohio Canal for charity. It's impossible to be bored with the array of events happening year-round.
6. The Ghost of Akron's Civic Theater
Last but not least, prepare yourself to live amongst the supernatural! Akron's Civic Theater, with its beautiful Moorish architecture, is believed to house its own ghost named Fred who reportedly loves to play pranks on the staff! If you are brave enough, be sure to pay a visit to see if you can spot Fred, making your move to Akron that bit more exciting!
And there you have it, just a few tidbits about this cool city nestled in the Buckeye State. With its rich history, lush parks, lively downtown living, and quirky local secrets, Akron offers a uniquely captivating experience. By this point, you should definitely be packing your bags, ready to explore your new adventure. Welcome to Akron, Ohio. You're going to love it here!
Pros and Cons of Living in Akron
Pros of Living in Akron
Affordable Cost of Living
Compared to many other regions in the United States, Akron offers a relatively low cost of living. Everything from utilities to groceries, housing to transportation is considered cheaper, making it an attractive option for both families and single professionals.
Plethora of Outdoor Activities
Akron is surrounded by natural beauty, providing plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities. Residents can enjoy hiking, biking, and picnicking in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, or boating and fishing in Portage Lakes State Park.
Rich in Arts and Culture
Akron offers a variety of cultural experiences, including a vibrant arts scene. The city is home to several theatres, art galleries, and the Akron Art Museum, plus annual events such as the National Hamburger Festival and the SOAP Box Derby.
Good Quality of Education
Akron residents have access to quality education through local public and private schools, as well as higher education institutions such as The University of Akron. The city also has unique career-oriented schools like the National Inventors Hall of Fame STEM Middle School.
Flourishing Job Market
Akron has a strong job market, particularly in sectors like healthcare, education, and manufacturing. Major employers include Summa Health System, Goodyear Tire & Rubber, and the University of Akron, creating a diverse range of opportunities.
Cons of Living in Akron
Challenging Weather Conditions
Akron experiences a wide range of weather conditions, with freezing winters and humid summers. Snowfall can be heavy, making commuting difficult during winter, while summers can become uncomfortably warm.
Higher Crime Rates
While Akron is generally safe, it does have higher than average crime rates in certain neighborhoods. It's always important to research and choose the right community when deciding to move.
Lack of Public Transportation
Akron's public transportation system is not as developed as those in larger cities. While there are bus services, they may not cover all areas of the city and schedules can be inconvenient, making owning a car almost a necessity.
Less Diversity in Dining
While Akron has some local restaurants and eateries that offer various cuisines, it may not offer as much diversity as larger cities. If you are someone who is looking for a wide variety of international culinary experiences, it may fall short.
Slow Economic Growth
Although there are job opportunities in Akron, the city has experienced slower economic growth than some other parts of the United States. However, this trend could potentially change as more businesses continue to enter the local market.
Is Akron a Good Place to Live?
Akron, OH is a great place to live because of its vibrant arts scene, beautiful outdoor spaces and friendly, community-centered residents. This city offers affordable housing, excellent school systems and a host of recreational activities, including the famous Akron Zoo. Its rich history, combined with the modern amenities of a thriving city, make Akron, OH a truly delightful place to call home.
What Is Akron Famous For?'
Home of the Goodyear Blimp
When you think of Akron, the first thing that might come to mind is the famous Goodyear Blimp! This grandiose airship is manufactured and headquartered in Akron, serving as one of the city\'s iconic symbols. It\'s not an unusual site for locals to see this floating marvel in the sky - talk about an uplifting commute!
Birthplace of LeBron James
Swoosh! Akron scores big as being the birthplace of NBA superstar LeBron James. The basketball prodigy was raised and first dunked a basketball here, before making his name as one of the greatest players in NBA history. His high school games at St. Vincent-St. Mary were legendary, and LeBron remains a proud Akronite at heart.
Rubber Capital of the World
It\'s no stretch to say Akron is synonymous with rubber! Known as the "Rubber Capital of the World", Akron was once the home of major tire manufacturers Goodyear, Firestone, and General Tire. Though the industry has since downsized, Akron\'s history remains firmly treaded in its rubber roots.
Pioneers in Soap Box Derby
Ready, set, derby! Akron is the proud host of the All-American Soap Box Derby, an annual race of gravity powered cars piloted by youngsters from all over the world. Beginning in 1934, Akron\'s derby hill has seen thousands of children race down its slope, bringing joy and a healthy dose of competition each summer.'
Overview of Tax Rates
In Akron, OH, the average property tax rate is around 2.29% of a property's assessed fair market value as of 2023. This is significantly higher than the national average of 1.07%.
As of 2023, Akron, OH has a combined sales tax rate of approximately 6.75%, which is lower than the national average of around 7.12%. It combines the Ohio state rate of 5.75% with Akron's city rate of 1%.
Their income tax is a flat tax rate of 2.5% on gross income as of 2023. Ohio's state income tax rate is 3.465%, which when combined gives a total of 5.965%, this is slightly below the average US state and local income tax rate.
The Akron, OH housing market remains an appealing choice for both home buyers and renters. With a median home value significantly lower than the national average, purchasing property is a feasible option, yielding a promising ROI for investors. Despite rising slowly, Akron's rental prices are comparatively affordable, presenting a cost-effective living solution for renters. The average rental yield fares well against records around the US. However, while Akron's property appreciation rates are robust, the housing market shows paced growth relative to faster-appreciating American cities. Before finalizing any decision, it is advisable to retrieve up-to-date housing market information.
Cost of Living
Living in Akron, OH currently offers a significantly lower cost of living compared to other U.S. cities. Basic amenities such as housing, groceries, and healthcare are generally more affordable here. While the average cost of living index in the U.S. is 100, Akron stands at 79.6, making it a more economical choice. Despite the lower cost, Akron's quality of life is competitive, with access to recreational activities, quality education, and cultural events. Therefore, Akron represents an advantageous location for those seeking to balance cost and lifestyle.
Weather & Natural Disasters
Akron, Ohio experiences a humid continental climate. The region is distinguished by hot, humid summers and cold, snowy winters. The average temperature ranges from 21degF in January to as high as 83degF in July, alongside a yearly average precipitation of about 38 inches. The city experiences the majority of its rainfall during the late spring and throughout summer. The change of seasons brings a dynamic array of colors, making Akron extraordinarily scenic. In terms of natural disasters, though not exceedingly common, Akron is susceptible to thunderstorms, tornadoes, blizzards, and floods. Earthquakes are relatively rare. The region's weather variability and occasional extreme weather events are testament to its position within North America's primary storm path. Despite these occasional weather-related challenges, Akron's climatic diversity contributes to its charm and appeal.
Economy & Job Market
* Retail Trade
Known as the "Rubber Capital of the World," Akron, Ohio, has a rich history in the rubber and tire manufacturing industry, with companies like Goodyear and Firestone once dominating the city's economy. However, just as a rubber band stretches and morphs, so too has Akron's economy. While manufacturing still holds a place, it's the healthcare, education, and retail sectors that now take the leading roles in this midwestern city's economic narrative. Some of the largest employers are education-based, like the University of Akron and Akron Public Schools, but the city's crown jewel is the Summa Health Systems, part of a massive healthcare industry that has, like a caring nurse, helped Akron's economic lifeblood keep pumping.
If you're aiming to make Akron your new home sweet home, there are a few things to consider regarding the job market. The city boasts a lower unemployment rate than the national average, indicating a healthy job market, and the cost of living index is significantly lower than the national average, causing your hard-earned dollars to stretch further. While healthcare and education might be the usual suspects for job hunting, don't overlook the manufacturing and retail industries. And who knows? As you tuck into a hearty breakfast at an Akron cafe, or shop for knick-knacks in one of its many retail stores, you might stumble across an unexpected job opportunity. After all, in Akron, the economic landscape is as constantly evolving as its vibrant, bustling streets.
Traffic and Transportation
Zooming through Akron, OH and wondering about the average commute time and local transport options? Well, you're in the right place, my friend! Usually, folks in Akron have it quite cushy with an average commute time of about 22 minutes - that's a breeze for those used to city traffic! Not a fan of driving? No worries, Akron Metro Regional Transit steps in as your chariot, with bus services that conveniently crisscross the city. For those with a penchant for air travel or those seeking fast, long-distance trips, the Akron-Canton Airport offers your wings, serving major airlines with a dash of Ohio charm. Step into Akron, where your commute is not just a ride, but an experience!
Best Neighborhoods in Akron
1. Highland Square
Highland Square holds a crown jewel status among Akron neighborhoods. Known for its eclectic vibe filled with art, culture, and history, it's a haven for artists, students, and young professionals. With a variety of independent businesses, vintage shops, art galleries, and restaurants, it's the perfect place for anyone who enjoys a diverse and lively scene. Plus, there's never a dull moment with events like the Highland Square Film Festival, PorchRokr Music and Art Festival, and events at the stunning Highland Theatre.
2. West Akron
Imagine a place where the charm of historic homes meets modern-day conveniences, and you have West Akron. Home to some of the most prestigious homes in the city, this neighborhood is characterized by winding streets, mature trees, and beautifully maintained landscapes. On the other hand, it also features top schools, a robust retail presence with trendy shopping outlets, and amenities like the renowned Firestone Country Club and exceptional healthcare facilities. It's a family-friendly community that really does have it all!
Quaint, small-town feel with big city amenities would be a perfect description of Wallhaven. Nestled amongst green spaces and parks, it's a terrific place for nature and outdoor enthusiasts. Plus, it's home to 'The Boulevard,' known for its unique blend of restaurants, boutiques, and bakeries, offering plenty of entertainment. With a mix of single-family homes, apartments, townhouses, Wallhaven offers diverse living options, making it suitable for both families and singles alike.
4. North Hill
North Hill is an inviting melting pot of different cultures that offers a rich and diverse living experience. With a strong sense of community, this neighborhood boasts a wonderful array of local eateries and Asian markets thanks to its vibrant Asian community. Being the host of the annual Italian-American Festival, North Hill also embraces its Italian heritage. Plus, the scenic Gorge Metro Park is only a short drive away - making it a great place for picnics or strolls along the valley.
5. Merriman Valley
Last but definitely not least, Merriman Valley combines urban living with an outdoor lifestyle flawlessly. Flanked by the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, it's a paradise for outdoors lovers, offering hiking, biking, and kayaking opportunities at your doorstep. To add to its charm, this neighborhood hosts numerous popular restaurants, pubs, and shopping establishments, ensuring there's no shortage of weekend entertainment. Offering a mix of housing options from chic apartments to cozy bungalows, Merriman Valley is, in many ways, the perfect balance between city conveniences and natural beauty.
So there you have it, five neighborhoods in Akron that each bring a unique flavor and charm to the city. Regardless of what you look for in a location - vibrant city living, a family-friendly community, a historic charm, or natural beauty - Akron has a neighborhood just for you. So pack your bags and come find your dream home in this beautiful city!
Things to Do
Welcome to Akron, Ohio, where old industrial city charm meets modern city vibrancy. Famed as the Rubber city of America, Akron hides a slew of delights ready to discover. Here are seven top-notch things you must do when moving to this vivacious city.
1. Dive into the Rich History at Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens
Go back in time as you explore one of the largest homes in the United States. This classic Tudor Revival mansion, built by F. A. Seiberling, co-founder of Goodyear Tires, boasts stunning English-style gardens that will leave you bedazzled. Roam around the furnished rooms, take a stroll in the beautiful gardens, or experience the Manor House - the tour possibilities are endless.
2. Unleash Your Inner Scientist at Akron Fossils & Science Center
Kid or adult, it doesn't matter. At Akron Fossils & Science Center, you can touch fossils that are millions of years old, peer through microscopes, and unravel the mysteries of science with hands-on displays. And how about a science-themed mini-golf course? Yes, they have that too!
3. Have a Blast at Akron Art Museum
Get ready to have your senses stimulated as you wander through the Akron Art Museum. With an immaculate collection ranging from 1850 to present, their commitment to modern and contemporary artworks provides a unique perspective on the course of art history. It's a tremendous artistic ride you won't regret.
4. Explore the Unusual at Don Drumm Studios & Gallery
Akron keeps its artistic spirit soaring high with this one-of-a-kind studio and gallery. Don Drumm Studios displays the work of over 500 artists across the U.S., some of them quite unique. Walk into this art maze and be amazed at the creativity inside a single space.
5. Enjoy the Great Outdoors at Goodyear Heights Metro Park
Ready for some environment-friendly fun? Get lost amid the colorful wildflowers and observe native animals at Goodyear Heights Metro Park. The nature trails and picnic facilities make it an ideal family outing spot. It's the natural escape everyone needs to refresh their mind.
6. Feed Your Fun Side at Akron RubberDucks' Canal Park
Want to feel the local spirit? Join the frenzy at a home game of Akron's very own minor league baseball team, the RubberDucks, at Canal Park. With its terrific ambience and fun family events, it is one of the finest baseball facilities for players and spectators alike.
7. Indulge your Sweet Tooth at Mary Coyle Ice Cream
A sweet secret not too many outsiders know about, Mary Coyle has been spooning out happiness since 1932. Serving heaps of traditional homemade ice cream, this retro spot will transport your taste buds to yesteryear. The cherry on top? Their specialties include Black Raspberry chip and Butter Pecan - yum!
So spread your wings (or rather open your car door) and start exploring Akron. From its historical roots to its unique art scene and natural splendor, Akron is proven to be more than just its rubber. Play, eat, learn, walk, and more - get ready to bask in the diverse charm Akron, Ohio has to offer!
Find Movers for Your Akron Relocation
As you embrace the possibilities that accompany your transition to Akron, Ohio, remember that the process of moving need not be overwhelming. By utilizing the services of Great Guys Moving, you can savor the anticipation of your new chapter, while we simplify your relocation. With our longstanding relationships with quality movers known for their affordability, you are guaranteed skilled and insured professionals to facilitate your move. Leave the tedious logistics to us. We invite you to submit the specifics of your move, so we can swiftly connect you with the perfect movers for your needs. With Great Guys Moving, obtaining a free moving quote is just a click away.
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