Considered by many to be the prettiest state in the Pacific Northwest, Washington State offers the perfect blend of stunning nature, high quality of life, diverse opportunities, and a thriving economy (with no state income tax, to boot). No wonder so many people are flocking to the Evergreen State.

Mulling over the decision to relocate to Washington? We’re here to help. Great Guys Moving has put together an informative WA moving guide, broken down into the following sections:

  1. Things to Consider Before Moving
  2. Top Places to Live Here
  3. Interstate Moving Checklist
  4. Great Guys Moving Services

Our goal is to help you find clarity and make the best choices for yourself and your loved ones. Once you’re ready, we can provide you with free moving quotes from reputable Washington moving companies in a few minutes – simple & easy!

Find out how much your move costs!

Living in Washington: What to Know Before Moving to Washington

Moving to the Evergreen State? If so, you’ll want to consider a few things before heading to the nation’s 18th largest state by size (71,298 square miles) and the 13th largest state by population (7.67 million).

Pros and Cons of Living in Washington


  • The great outdoors: Nicknamed for its expansive evergreen forests, the state offers endless activities: hiking, cycling, sailing, fishing, rock climbing, boating, kayaking, skiing, the list goes on.
  • Thriving Economy: Recently ranked as America’s best economy, Washington currently has the highest GDP growth in the nation, thanks to aerospace, tech, and other major industries.
  • Job opportunities: Known for being a top state for business and innovation, this is a great place to start your career or find that perfect opportunity to expand your current one.
  • New home to tech: Speaking of innovation, Seattle is a mecca for tech jobs. Home to Amazon, Boeing, Microsoft, and Starbucks, the state is giving Silicon Valley a run for its money.
  • No state income tax: Yes, that’s right, no state income tax. Mid to high-income earners pay fewer taxes than in several other states (see cons for low-income earners).
  • Education: Home to renowned universities, including Gonzaga University and Seattle University, you’ll find first-rate academic options ranging from liberal arts to research-oriented institutions.
  • Overall Quality of Life: As a paradise for nature lovers, the state of Washington offers a high quality of life with its mountains, rainforests, lakes, deserts, and Pacific coastline.


  • Taxes for low-income earners: According to a report by WalletHub, Washington is the worst state in which to earn a low income. The tax burden for low-income earners is 14.59% (2019).
  • Cost of living: Straight up, it can be expensive living here. However, if you’re coming from a city like NYC or San Francisco, the cost of living is a major benefit.
  • Quality of healthcare: Ranked #28 in America, the state has room for improvement when it comes to healthcare costs, access, and outcomes.
  • Weather: The western portion of the state sees a lot of rainfall with fewer sunny days than the national average. Central and eastern Washington experience a dry climate with extreme temperatures.
  • Traffic: Washington was recently ranked the 2nd worst state for driving (with Hawaii taking top honors). This ranking depends on several factors, including traffic congestion, road quality, and gas prices.
  • Property crime rate: Though violent crime is significantly lower than the national average, property crime is higher compared to the rest of the United States.

Is Washington a Good State to Live In?

Washington is an awesome place to live because it offers a high quality of life in almost every aspect, its economy keeps growing, and there are loads of outdoor activities to enjoy. With many tech companies moving to the Evergreen State, there’s a host of job opportunities for professionals in various tech-related industries. At the same time, Washington has amazing outdoor experiences to give you the perfect balance of work and play.

Tax Rates

  • Property Tax: Ranked #29 in the US, Washington has an effective real-estate tax rate of 1.03%.
  • Sales Tax: The Washington State base sales tax rate is 6.5%. The total tax rate varies from county to county, which can be as high as 10.4%. For example, Seattle has a combined local and state tax rate of 10.1%. Spokane, on the other hand, enjoys a total tax rate of 8.9%.
  • Income Tax: 0%. There is no personal income tax in the state of Washington.

Housing Market

To Rent or Buy? Overall, it is a better option to buy rather than rent in Washington State. The average mortgage is $1,729. The average monthly rent is $1,995.

  • Median Home Value: $387,100
  • Median Rental Expense: $1,168 (1BR), $1,464 (2BR)

Cheapest Places to Live in Washington:

  1. Connell
  2. Ephrata
  3. Prosser
  4. Quincy
  5. West Richland
  6. Toppenish
  7. Pasco
  8. Hoquiam
  9. Othello
  10. Woodland

Cost of Living

According to the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center (MERIC), Washington ranks #38 in the nation for cost of living with a cost of living index of 110.7. This index is above the nationwide index of 100.

Using EPI’s Family Budget Calculator, we can compare the average monthly costs in two Washington cities. We’ll use a family of four for these examples (2 adults + 2 children).

For our first example, we’ll look at Seattle. The cost breakdown is as follows: $1,527 for housing, $854 for food, $1,691 for childcare, $1,230 for transportation, $849 for healthcare, $961 for other necessities, and $984 for taxes, totaling $8,095/month or $97,142/year.

Next, let’s look at the eastern city of Spokane. The cost breakdown: $810 for housing, $749 for food, $1,239 for childcare, $1,168 for transportation, $808 for healthcare, $629 for other necessities, and $572 for taxes, for a total of $5,975/month or $71,704/year.

Weather & Natural Disasters

The state of Washington is split into two distinct zones: western and central/eastern.

The western region is mild and humid with plenty of rain, cloud cover, and fog. Average summer temps typically stay under 80°F, while winter temps rarely dip below 46°F. Annual rainfall can reach 160 inches. The western side of the Cascades can see up to 200 inches of snow.

East of the Cascades, the central/eastern climate is much drier with hotter summers and colder winters. Overall, snowfall is much more significant here compared to the western part of the state. Conversely, this zone sees an annual rainfall of only six inches.

Natural Disaster – Threats & Risks:

  1. Avalanches
  2. Drought
  3. Earthquake
  4. Flood
  5. Landslide
  6. Severe storm
  7. Tsunami
  8. Volcanic activity
  9. Wildfire
  10. Hazardous material / Radiological

Economy & Job Market

Ranked as the top state economy by US News and several other publications, Washington State is an economic powerhouse. Home to several top companies (including Boeing, Microsoft, and Starbucks), it has become a haven for innovation and a top agricultural producer.

Top Industries:

  1. Aerospace
  2. Agriculture & Food
  3. Clean Technology (Cleantech)
  4. Information & Communications Technology (ICT)
  5. Forest Products
  6. Life Science & Global Health
  7. Maritime
  8. Military & Defense
  9. Tourism

Top Employers:

  1. Amazon (Seattle)
  2. Starbucks (Seattle)
  3. Costco (Issaquah)
  4. Boeing (Redmond)
  5. Microsoft (Redmond)
  6. Providence Health & Services (Renton)
  7. Barrett Business Services (Vancouver)
  8. Nordstrom (Seattle)
  9. T-Mobile (Bellevue)
  10. University of Washington (Seattle)
  11. Fortive (Everett)
  12. PACCAR (Bellevue)
  13. Expedia Group (Bellevue)
  14. Savers (Bellevue)
  15. Alaska Airlines (Seattle)
  16. Expeditors (Seattle)
  17. Solstice Holdings Inc. (Seattle)
  18. Esterline (Bellevue)
  19. Recreational Equipment Inc. (Sumner)
  20. Carrix (Seattle)

Looking for work in Washington? Here are some handy resources:

  1. gov page: Access Washington – Get a Job
  2. Job search: Indeed, LinkedIn, CollegeRecruiter, CareerBuilder
  3. Resume help: Monster, TopResume, ResumeRobin

Traffic and Transportation

Major forms of transportation in the state of Washington include:

  1. Ferry system (3rd largest in the world)
  2. Public airfields (140 in total)
  3. Freight railroad system
  4. Amtrak
  5. The Sounder commuter rail (Seattle metro area)
  6. Sound Transit Link light rail (Seattle and Tacoma)
  7. Bus systems (King County Metro being the largest)
  8. Personal vehicles
  9. Taxi / Uber / Lyft
  10. Streetcar network (Seattle)

Washington has a network of 7,000+ miles of highways, which are maintained by the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT). Major interstate highways include I-5, I-82, and I-90. Auxiliary interstate highways include I-182, I-205, I-405, I-605, and I-705. According to Wallethub, Washington traffic is some of the worst in the country. It also comes in at #33 for road quality, along with having some of the highest gas prices in the United States.

Things to Do

  • Food & Drink: Beth’s Café, Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, Salty’s on Alki Beach, A La Mode, Canon, Fremont Brewing Company, The Lakehouse, Sam’s Tavern, Tacos Chukis, Mike’s Chili Parlor, Facing East, Theo Chocolate, Milstead & Co., Elysian Brewing Company, Cupcake Royale, The 5 Point Café, Daddy’s Donuts, Vancouver Farmers Market, PCC Market, Ma’ono
  • Family Friendly: Zip San Juan, Gesa Carousel of Dreams, Slidewaters, Seattle Great Wheel, Great Wolf Lodge, Surf ‘n Slide Water Park, Henry Moses Aquatic Center, Hands On Children’s Museum, Manito Park, Imagine Children’s Museum, B&B Family Farm, Moran State Park, Pioneer Park, Lake Sacajawea Park, Whatcom Walls Park, Mount Rainier, 5 Mile Drive & Trails
  • Parks & Monuments: Mount St. Helens National Monument, Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Olympic National Park, Mount Rainier National Park, Hanford Reach National Monument, San Juan Islands National Monument, North Cascades National Park, Discovery Park, Cape Disappointment State Park, Flaming Geyser State Park, Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park
  • Museums: The Future of Flight Aviation Center & Boeing Tour, Museum of Glass, the Tacoma Art Museum, Washington State History Museum, Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture, North Cascades National Park, Nutcracker Museum, SPARK Museum of Electrical Invention, the Whatcom Museum, The Museum of Flight, Living Computers: Museums + Labs
  • Art Galleries: Chihuly Garden & Glass, Sandphifer Gallery, Tacoma Glassblowing Studio, Callahan’s Firehouse Studio& Gallery, Seattle Glassblowing Studio, Childhood’s End Gallery, Island Studios, Glasshouse Studios, Arctic Raven Gallery, Fusions Gallery, Orcas Island Artworks, EarthenWorks Gallery, Northwest Native Expressions Art Gallery, Don Nisbett Art Gallery
  • Events & Festivals: Christmas Lighting Festival, Redmond Derby Days, Scottish Highland Games, Omak Stampede, Kla Ha Ya Days, Brass Screw Confederacy, Fremont Solstice Fair, Kent Cornucopia Days, Washington Oyster Fest, Marysville Strawberry Festival, Paradiso Festival, Summer Meltdown Festival, Bumbershoot Festival, Lucky, Watershed Music Festival
  • Nightlife: Tacoma Dome, Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley, The Pink Door, Pike Brewing Company, Bathtub & Gin Co., The Triple Door, The Tasting Room, Pourhouse, The Crocodile, Kells Irish Pub, Flatstick Pub, Trainwreck BAR, Loretta’s Northwesterner, Teku Tavern, Bookwalter Winery, Port Townsend Brewing Company, Keys on Main, Wine Rose Cellars, No Boat Brewing Company
  • Zoos & Aquariums: Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, Leavenworth Reindeer Farm, Northwest Trek Wildlife Park, Woodland Park Zoo, Port Townsend Marine Science Center, Point Defiance Park, Seattle Aquarium, Feiro Marine Life Center, Cougar Mountain Zoo, Wild Felid Advocacy Center of Washington, The Reptile Zoo
  • Destinations & Attractions: Seattle, San Juan Islands, Coulee Corridor National Scenic Byway, Port Angeles, Spokane, Lake Chelan, Leavenworth, Washington State Ferries, Snoqualmie Falls, Bellingham, Vashon Island, Columbia River Gorge, Space Needle, WA State Capitol Building
  • Cool & Unusual: Mystery Soda Machine, Seattle Underground, Fremont Troll, Ye Olde Curiosity Shop, Hall of Mosses, Museum of Pop Culture, Seattle Metaphysical, The Ape Cave, UPS Waterfall Garden Park, A Sound Garden, Olympic Hot Springs, Steve’s Weird House, Seattle’s Official Bad Art Museum of Art, Seattle Meowtropolitan Cat Café, Seattle Pinball Museum

Schools and Universities

Washington is home to several acclaimed universities and public schools. Here are the top picks:

Top WA Colleges:

  1. University of Washington (Seattle)
  2. Gonzaga University (Spokane)
  3. Seattle University (Seattle)
  4. Washington State College (Pullman)
  5. Whitworth University (Spokane)
  6. Western Washington University (Bellingham)
  7. Seattle Pacific University (Seattle)
  8. Pacific Lutheran University (Tacoma)
  9. Whitman College (Walla Walla)
  10. Northwest University (Kirkland)

Top WA Public School Districts:

  1. Bellevue School District (Bellevue)
  2. Mercer Island School District (Mercer Island)
  3. Bainbridge Island School District (Bainbridge Island)
  4. Lake Washington School District (Redmond)
  5. Issaquah School District (Issaquah)
  6. Northshore School District (Bothell)
  7. Oakesdale School District (Oakesdale)
  8. Pullman Public Schools (Pullman)
  9. Shoreline School District (Shoreline)
  10. Camas School District (Camas)

How to Become a Washington Resident

To become an official resident of Washington, the state requires you to satisfy any of the following:

  1. Have a WA residence for personal use
  2. Registered to vote in the state
  3. Have a state business license
  4. Attend a WA school and pay in-state tuition
  5. Use a WA address for state and federal taxes
  6. Have a WA driver’s license
  7. Receive state benefits

To become a resident student, you must establish domicile in Washington for 12 months.

Moving to Washington DMV

Acquiring a new driver’s license:

After moving to the state, new residents have 30 days to get a driver’s license.

Steps to getting a new license:

  1. Establish Washington residency
  2. Choose standard or enhanced driver’s license
  3. Discover if you can pre-apply online
  4. Visit a driver licensing office
  5. Request WA vehicle plates

Vehicle registration:

New WA residents must register an out-of-state vehicle within 30 days. First, you must get a WA driver’s license. Next, call a vehicle licensing office for details on forms and fees. Finally, submit paperwork and payment. If you visit an office, you will receive plates immediately. If you mail everything in, it can take up to three weeks from when your application is received.

To qualify to vote, you must be:

  1. A United States citizen
  2. A legal Washington State resident
  3. 18 years or older on election day
  4. Not under WADOC supervision for a felony conviction
  5. Not disqualified due to a court order

You may register to vote by mail, online (must have Washington ID or driver’s license), or in person (via your local county elections department).

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Best Places to Live in Washington


Population: 139,000
Median Home Value: $665,700
Region: Western Washington

Meaning “pretty view” in French, Bellevue is more than just another Seattle suburb. As one of Washington’s biggest cities and Seattle’s largest suburbs, the western city offers mild weather, a thriving economy, easier commuting, and great neighborhoods. Most residents own their homes and tend to be liberal. The city is diverse, and its public schools are some of the best in the state.

Bellevue is a prime location that allows nature lovers to go east for hiking and west for beach fun, all both within a short drive. Career opportunities are plentiful, especially in tech and healthcare. Also known to be kid-friendly and safe, it’s a great place to raise a family. It is also a major tech hub. This industry attracts more affluent residents, however, which has led to skyrocketing housing prices.

Though smaller than other US cities, Bellevue still offers a plethora of activities and attractions. Nicknamed ‘The City in the Park,’ it has an expansive park system. Outdoor enthusiasts love it here. If you’re more into indoor activities, then you’ll be at home as well. There are plenty of theaters, museums, the award-winning library system, bars, clubs, and more. With hundreds of stores, the city is also a prime shopping destination.

Looking for a top neighborhood? Consider Northeast Bellevue, Bridle Trails, West Bellevue or Beaux Arts Village. As mentioned before, public schools are highly rated here, which include Interlake Senior High School, International Community School, Newport Senior High School, Bellevue High School, and International School. Private school options include Forest Ridge School of the Sacred Heart and Hillside Student Community School, among others.

If you’re looking for a nice blend of suburban and urban mixed with stellar amenities (close to Seattle), this diverse city should be on your radar.


Population: 50,000
Median Home Value: $322,200
Region: Western Washington

Next on our list is Olympia. Situated along the southern tip of Puget Sound in Thurston County, the capital city of Washington offers breathtaking scenery, growing communities, top transportation (from buses and vanpooling to 32+ miles of bike lanes), affordable housing, and plenty of government jobs. Conservatives and hippie spirits alike call the city home, and residents tend to rent. Like most western Washington cities, the public school system is highly rated.

There is plenty of rain here, but if that doesn’t bother you, Olympia is situated perfectly between gorgeous mountains and sandy beaches. Continually growing, the city nonetheless maintains a welcoming environment ideal for younger professionals, families, and retirees. On the downside, it has gotten less safe over the years, particularly in the downtown area.

Popular attractions include the Capitol Tour, Tumwater Falls Park, and the Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, Centennial Station, the Fish Brewing Company, the Washington Center for Performing Arts, and the Olympia Family Theater. Olympia is also a regional hub for fine arts, and it is home to Olympia Little Theater, Harlequin Productions, Animal Fire Theater, Olympia Family Theater, and Theater Arts Olympia (TAO).

Top public schools include Olympia High School, Jefferson Middle School, Washington Middle School, Aspire Middle, and Centennial Elementary School. If you’re looking for private K–12 education, schools to consider should include Evergreen Christian School, St. Michael School, Nova School, Capital Montessori School, and Olympia Christian School. As for higher education, Olympia is home to Evergreen State College and South Puget Sound Community College.

If you’re a lover of nature and looking for an affordable place to live, Olympia offers the right balance!


Population: 60,700
Median Home Value: $579,400
Region: Western Washington

Located less than 20 miles northeast of Seattle, we have Redmond. This picturesque city was once known for logging and fishing (along with being home to Native Americans for at least 10,000 years), but it has since become a tech hub. With companies like Nintendo of America and Microsoft headquartered here, the population is mainly comprised of higher-income couples and singles that tend to be liberal and own their homes. Again, schools rate highly in this western WA city.

Known as the tech capital of Washington (and the bicycle capital of the Northwest), it has a lot to offer for everyone from art enthusiasts to nature lovers and children (along with kids at heart). Popular attractions include Redmond Derby Days, Redmond Saturday Market, Big Picture movie theater, Marymoor Park, Uncle’s Games (great for families), Reading with Rover (therapy dog program), Redmond Town Center, and a bustling downtown.

Crime is low here, and the unemployment rate is roughly half that of the US average. On the other hand, the cost of living isn’t cheap, but you get what you pay for here. Top neighbors include Willow-Rose Hill, Overlake, Sammamish Valley, Downtown Redmond, Education Hill, and Bear Creek.

Looking for top K–12 academics? Check out Tesla STEM High School, Interlake Senior High School, International Community School, International School, and Redmond High School. Those interested in private schooling should consider the Sammamish Montessori School, Cascadia Montessori, School, Northern Lights Montessori School, Faith Lutheran School, and Brightmont Academy – Redmond. The city is also home to DigiPen Institute of Technology, a highly rated for-profit university.

In search of a fantastic city with a small-town feel? Redmond offers dynamic diversity, great job opportunities, and proximity to numerous activities and attractions.


Population: 688,200
Median Home Value: $717,800
Region: Western Washington

When people think of Washington State, the first thing that usually comes to mind is Seattle. Sure, the rain and traffic congestion can be a bit too much, but this unique, edgy seaport city holds so many charms that most residents easily look past its less-than-ideal attributes. As one of the fastest growing cities in America, Seattle is a cultural powerhouse with its history in grunge music, tech, and trade.

As the biggest city in both Washington and the Pacific Northwest (and home to household names like Amazon and Starbucks), it offers a temperate climate with less rain than several other major US cities. It is still a rainy place and known to be chilly, though. The weather informs everything here, from music and art to how people dress and think. Coffee-centric, dog-friendly, educated, and environmentally conscious, Seattleites take pride in their way of life.

If you haven’t picked up on it yet, western Washington tends to be liberal and filled with tech professionals, eccentrics, and families alike. The Emerald City is no exception. Ethnic and economic diversity is high, and neighborhoods are constantly seeing dynamic change. Top neighborhoods include Fremont, Belltown, Pioneer Square, and Magnolia.

Highly rated public schools include Raisbeck Aviation High School, Garfield High School, Roosevelt High School, Chinook Middle School, and Ingraham High School. Looking for Seattle private schools. There’s Lakeside School, the Bush School, the Northwest School, Seattle Academy, and University Prep. On the college end, the city does not disappoint. Acclaimed schools include the University of Washington, Seattle Pacific University, Cornish College of the Arts, and Pima Medical Institute – Seattle.

Those who like live music, innovative tech, endless outdoor adventures, fabulous food, fine art, and even major sports love it here. If you want to live in a one-of-a-kind Northwestern city surrounded by unbelievably beautiful nature (and can afford it), Seattle should be at the top of your list!


Population: 207,300
Median Home Value: $312,700
Region: Western Washington

Rounding out our list of top western WA cities is Tacoma. Located in Pierce County along Puget Sound, this medium-sized city is a much more affordable alternative to pricey Seattle. Most residents are homeowners, and people tend to be politically moderate here. After going through a rough patch in the 90s, the port city has re-emerged as one of Washington’s top destinations for creatives and businesspeople, including writers, visual artists, and entrepreneurs.

Thirty to 45 minutes south of Seattle, Tacoma offers a plethora of things to do for both residents and tourists. Highlights include a host of acclaimed restaurants, parks, breweries, art galleries, museums, and performing arts centers, among other things. Considered to be one of the most diverse cities in the state, it is a melting pot that offers a vibrant, dynamic experience. The job market is strong, and the city offers four seasons with mild weather. One downside is a higher crime and drug use.

Education is above average in this western city. Top public schools in the area include University Place Primary School, Narrows View Intermediate School, Evergreen Primary School, Curtis Senior High School, and Science & Math Institute. Top private schools include Annie Wright Schools, Bellarmine Preparatory School, Covenant High School, Life Christian Academy, and Concordia Christian Academy. Those looking for institutes of higher learning have several options, such as Pacific Lutheran University, University of Puget Sound, University of Washington – Tacoma, Bates Technical College, and Summit Salon Academy.

In search of a mid-sized port city that offers relatively affordable living and easy access to Seattle and other urban areas? Tacoma is one of Washington’s best-kept secrets in this regard.


Population: 32,400
Median Home Value: $291,200
Region: Eastern Washington

Though there are a handful of attractive western Washington metro areas, the eastern portion of the state also offers great places to live. Enter the city of Pullman. Located just south of Spokane, this city of less than 33,000 has roots in agriculture (nicknamed ‘The Lentil Capital’) and is a park-and-path lover’s paradise. Most residents rent and tend to be more politically conservative. With a small-town vibe, Pullman offers a refreshing alternative to the hustle and bustle of other WA cities.

Home to 15+ miles of pathways and 17 parks, the city has prioritized the construction and maintenance of green spaces. Offering a nice balance of a youthful, college-town atmosphere and great outdoor activities, Pullman has a median age of less than 25 years old. Even though it has hot summers and cold winters, the city enjoys breathtaking autumns filled with colorful leaves and crisp weather. And let’s not forget the gorgeous sunsets!

If you have kids, there are several well-rated public schools like Pullman High School (a top school in the United States), Franklin Elementary School, Jefferson Elementary School, Lincoln Middle School, and Sunnyside Elementary School. If you’re in the market for K–12 private schools, look at Pullman Christian School, Montessori School of Pullman, and Royal Garrison School. As for colleges, Pullman is home to Washington State University.

Snuggled between rolling hills, Pullman is a friendly, safe, and inexpensive college town that should be seriously considered by prospective students and families looking to move to Eastern Washington.


Population: 54,000
Median Home Value: $226,300
Region: Eastern Washington

Part of the closely tied Tri-Cities (along with neighbors Kennewick and Pasco), this southeastern Washington city located in Benton County is a bit of a hidden gem. Offering a safe, small-town lifestyle mixed with big-city amenities, Richland is a close-knit community built in the desert region of Washington State. Many residents own their homes and tend to lean conservative.

With hotter summers and relatively frigid winters, the city isn’t exactly the typical WA place that pops in mind. This, of course, may be an attractive point. Filled with charming shops and some the nicest parks in the state, Richland has other attractions which include the Yakima River, the Badger Mountain Centennial Preserve, Hanford Nuclear Reservation, the Arid Lands Ecology Reserve, the Hanford Reach, the Amon Creek Natural Preserve, Barnard Griffin Winery, and Bookwalter Winery.

Top public schools include Hanford High School, White Bluffs Elementary School, Orchard Elementary School, Cottonwood Elementary School, and Lewis & Clark Elementary. As for private education, there’s Liberty Christian School of the Tri-Cities, Christ the King School, Children’s Garden Montessori School, Sagebrush Montessori School, and Sagebrush Elementary School. Richland is also home to Washington State University – Tri-Cities, Academy of Cosmetology – Washington, and Paul Mitchell the School.

In the market for an affordable home in a picturesque city? Peek at what Richland has to offer!


Population: 213,000
Median Home Value: $214,600
Region: Eastern Washington

Last, but not least, we have the eastern city of Spokane. Situated in Spokane County, this once-sleepy city (now 2nd largest in Washington) has consistently ranked on Top 100 lists of best places to live in America. The majority of Spokaneites tend to lean conservative politically and own their homes. However, there is a wide diversity ranging from big families to hipsters.

Home to Gonzaga University and Whitworth University, Spokane has a healthy downtown, low cost of living, cost-effective commercial space, stellar trails (for hiking, jogging, and biking), easy access to five ski resorts and dozen of lakes, 28+ microbreweries, 26+ wineries/tasting rooms, and plenty of hip & family friendly neighborhoods (including Browne’s Addition, The South Hill, and Peaceful Valley).

Public schooling is above average, with top schools like Lewis & Clark High School, Libby Center, Hutton Elementary School, Prairie View Elementary School, and Moran Prairie Elementary School. Top private schools include Gonzaga Preparatory School, Enlightium Academy, and All Saints School. As mentioned before, Spokane is home to Gonzaga University and Whitworth University, along with Carrington College – Spokane, Spokane Community College, and Spokane Falls Community College.

Those in search of the perfect mix of affordability, job/academic opportunities, and high quality of life will find that Spokane checks all the boxes and more.

How to Move to Washington State

2-3 Months Before Moving Day

  • First, on the agenda – plan: If you want a drama-free moving experience, give yourself plenty of time to schedule and perform your relocation. In general, you should start planning logistics at least 8 to 12 weeks in advance. The sooner, the better.
  • Hire a WA moving company: Compare at least 3 to 5 fully licensed and insured movers. Once you’ve narrowed your search, select one as soon as possible. Early hiring will ensure the best rates and availability. Great Guys makes the process easy. Get hold of us today for a smooth Washington move.
  • Notify neighbors, landlord, etc.: It can be costly if you procrastinate, especially if you rent. Give your landlord a heads up ASAP. This heads-up will save you from extra fees and the risk of losing your security deposit.
  • Create inventory & declutter: The purging process will save a lot of space and money. Tour your home to assess the situation and create a mental inventory. One room at a time, label or create piles of stuff that you either want to keep or discard. Repeat this process until you’ve covered every space.
  • Donate, sell, recycle: Now that you’ve gone through the initial downsizing step, it’s time to let it go. Any disused items can be sold online, donated to a local charity, or recycled.
  • Visit your new town or city: If possible, take a trip to your future home. See what it has to offer. If this isn’t in the cards, subscribe to the local newspaper or newsletter to learn more about the area.
  • Prepare kids: Moving is stressful for everyone. Take the time to explain things to children. Be kind and use play or a story to help them understand. Maintain normal routines as much as possible.

1 Month Out

  • Begin packing: If you decide to pack yourself, be prepared. Grab plenty of cardboard boxes, tape, and packing materials. Try not to mix belongings from different rooms. Tape and label boxes. If DIY packing isn’t doable or desirable, we can find you a cheap packing service.
  • Update your address: Go online to com or visit a local USPS office. While you’re at it, change your address for online services/home delivery services and subscriptions.
  • Transfer prescriptions and medical records: Also make sure you have more than enough medications on hand. The last thing you need is to run out at the most inconvenient time.
  • Disconnect and activate services: This includes utilities (electric, water, gas, etc.). Schedule for services to be disconnected the day after you move. Make sure that new services will be available when you move into your new home. Also, if possible, coordinate with new residents, so they are covered, too.

2 Weeks to Go

  • Service your vehicle: If you’re driving your vehicle, you’ll want to make sure it’s in tiptop shape. Don’t forget an oil change, tire change, and any other services that your car, truck, or van requires.
  • Arrange cleaning services: This can include flooring (wood, vinyl, tile, carpet), drapes, paint, and even furniture. Have cleaners come in right after movers have cleared out everything.
  • Schedule pet transport: If it’s not possible for your furry friends to travel alongside you, you can always arrange special transportation. This tip goes for plants as well.
  • Throw a moving sale: If you want or need to downsize, this is the perfect opportunity to find new homes for your old stuff (and make a few extra bucks).
  • Check insurance coverage: Contact your moving company and insurer for details and options. It’s better to be safe than sorry, especially if you have a lot of valuable possessions being relocated or stored.
  • Schedule arrangements for kids: If you have children (or pets), you’ll want to consider daycare or a play date. Moving day can be extremely distracting. Ensure your little ones are safe and secure.
  • Celebrate this new chapter: During the hustle and bustle of moving, it can be easy to forget to take a moment to appreciate everything. Commemorate your time here and the memories you’ll make in the future with close friends and family. Throw a get-together, dinner party, or group outing.

Moving Week

  • Finalize packing: Now that you’ve (hopefully) taken care of the broad strokes, it’s time to cover the essentials you’ll need at your new place. Create a ‘first-night’ box. Fill it with meds, bedding, snacks, toys, tools – whatever you’ll need handy for the first 24 to 48 hours. Make it easily accessible.
  • Confirm with a moving company: Make sure everyone’s on the same page. Check arrival time. Provide a phone number that the company or truck driver can call to contact you quickly, and vice versa.
  • Confirm travel arrangements: If you’re flying, go over flight times, and double check reservations. If you’re driving, look over the vehicle (tire pressure, oil, etc.) and double check planned route.
  • Get some rest: Partying or staying up late the night before a move isn’t exactly ideal. You’ve got a long day ahead of you. Stay in, eat a healthy meal, and get plenty of sleep.

Moving Day

  • Be there when the movers arrive: Taking the time to answer your movers’ questions and clarify any instructions in person goes a long way.
  • Offer snacks: It’s hard to find someone who doesn’t appreciate a nice gesture. Supply your moving crew with snacks and bottled water. It will help motivate them and keep the vibe positive.
  • Tour old place one last time: Before you head out, perform one last walkthrough. This final check will ensure you don’t leave behind any messes or items you would have otherwise forgotten.
  • Enjoy the experience: Finally, remember the journey and not just the destination. You’re about to embark on a whole new set of adventures and create some amazing memories. Enjoy it!

Quality Moving Services from Washington Movers

Great Guys Moving offers top moving services at unbeatable rates.

Long Distance Moves

Your interstate move doesn’t have to be overwhelming. With the right assistance, you can relax and enjoy this exciting, new adventure. Our long-distance moving partners come fully equipped, licensed, and insured to handle any size move to or from the great state of Washington.

Intrastate & Local Moves

Moving to the coast? Headed to eastern WA? No worries! Our local moving partners know all the ins and outs of relocating anywhere within the state. Whether you’re moving to a small town or bustling city, we can connect you with a short distance moving company that fits your needs and budget.

International Moves

Relocating across the globe? Whether your move is for work or a fresh start, you want to make sure you cover all the complicated logistics, from visas to customs clearance. Let Great Guys connect you with a fully licensed overseas relocation service you can count on.

Small Load Moves

It’s amazing how efficient the right help can make a smaller move. If you’re looking for a small-load service for your studio, apartment, or dorm, we can hook you up with the right fit at an inexpensive rate that will put a smile on your face.

Furniture Shipments

Why risk injury or property damage? Instead of lugging around bulky furniture, leave it to the professionals. Our furniture movers come prepared with the right tools, experience, and attitude to safely and securing transport everything from leather coaches to antique cabinets.

Piano Transport

Need to move your piano across town or to another state? Whether you have a cherished heirloom upright or concert piano, you don’t want to leave it in the hands of just anyone. Our highly trained piano movers see to every detail, ensuring a harm-free transit.

Art Shipping & Transport

Fine art should be handled by experts. Don’t make the mistake of relying on a standard moving company. Whether you have a private collection or run an art gallery, you can rest assured that our specialized art handlers will handle your prized pieces with the utmost care.


Moving, renovating, or traveling? In any case, you probably need a cost-effective storage option. Fortunately, our network of reputable moving companies also offers short-term and long-term storage. Contact us today to book your storage solution.

Last Minute & Short Notice Moves

An abrupt move can be beyond stressful. Who are you supposed to trust on such short notice? Whether you just landed a new job or are facing eviction, we can help ease your anxiety. Contact us today to find a cheap, last-minute moving company in your area.

Residential Moves

Okay, so it’s time to move your entire household. Considering all the logistics, it can be daunting. By hiring reputable residential movers, you can save yourself any undue headaches. Enjoy a smoother relocation with one of our experienced Washington moving partners.

Packing Services

Don’t have the desire, time, or ability to pack everything? You’ve got options. From partial packing to a full-packing service from start to finish, we can find you a packing crew at a great rate. Enjoy the time and effort you’ll save while the pros wrap, crate, and box your belongings.

Commercial and Office Moves

Moving your entire office or retail space? We’ve got you covered. No need to worry about delays or downtime. Our network of highly qualified commercial movers helps you to stay on schedule. Focus on your business while your relocation is in great hands!

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Need affordable, quality WA moving services? Request a free moving estimate from Great Guys Moving today!

Get price estimates for your move right now.

Devin Barroga

Ever been bitten by the wanderlust bug? It's a powerful force, one which has captivated Devin for his entire life.... Read More