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Moving to Salem: Everything You Need To Know

Salem, Oregon, is a beautiful and vibrant city in the heart of the Pacific Northwest. Located just 47 miles south of Portland, Salem offers the charm of small-town living and easy access to big-city amenities. Surrounded by the Willamette River and the foothills of the Cascade Mountains, Salem also offers residents a unique blend of natural beauty and urban living. From its thriving downtown and cultural scene to its abundance of outdoor recreation, there is something for everyone in Salem.

Salem, OR Moving Companies

Community Profile

Salem is the capital of Oregon with a population of about 180,000. It is centrally located near Portland, the Cascade Mountains, and the beaches, making it an ideal location for various lifestyle activities. The city has seen steady growth over the years, which includes ongoing redevelopment of the historic downtown along with sustained commercial and residential development. Commutes are easy, parks are plentiful, and the people are friendly, making Salem an ideal place to call home. 

Cost of Living in Salem

The overall cost of living in Salem is slightly higher than the national average but more affordable than nearby Portland. Salem is about 6.9% more expensive than the national average, but Portland and many of its surrounding suburbs are about 25% higher than average. This makes living in Salem appealing for those who want to live near Portland on a budget. Housing is the biggest factor in the cost of living, with median home prices around the low $400s. The average monthly rent is about $1,400.

Salem Job Market

With a diverse range of employment opportunities, Salem is an excellent place for those looking to start or advance their careers. The city’s largest employer is the State of Oregon, which employs over 20,000. These include employers such as the Salem-Keizer School District, the Federal Government, and the City of Salem. Salem Health is the city’s largest private employer. Other top employers include Truitt Bros., Inc, Portland & Western Railroad, T-MOBILE, Wells Fargo, and May Trucking. 

Salem Climate

Salem residents are treated to four distinct seasons with warm, dry summers and cool, wet winters. Though the climate is similar to Portland, Salem gets less rain and fewer extreme temperatures. The summers include long, warm days that aren’t too hot. Winters are colder and rainer, with an average rainfall of about 45 inches annually. That said, there is little snowfall, and temperatures average in the mid 40’s to mid 50’s. Spring typically brings showers and cloudy weather, while the fall has less rain and cool, crisp temperatures. 

Things to Do in Salem

Outdoor Recreation

Salem is packed with exciting things to see and do for residents of all ages and interests. Its location puts it within a short drive to plenty of outdoor recreation. From the Willamette River and the Cascade Mountains to Mt. Hood National Forest and San Salvador Beach, there is something for everyone who enjoys spending time outdoors. Salem also boasts enormous parks, beautiful gardens, and stunning trails. Hiking, cycling, skiing, camping, and water sports are popular activities in the area. 

Local Attractions

Salem is packed with history, museums, and cultural attractions. Visitors can visit the Oregon State Capitol building and explore the grounds. They can also check out the Hallie Ford Museum of Art, the third-largest museum in the state. There are also plenty of historical museums highlighting pioneer life on the Oregon Trail, such as the Gilbert House Children’s Museum. Check out live music and theatrical performances at the Elsinore Theater or the Reed Opera House. Finally, the wine culture is quite popular, with popular tours along the Salem Wine Trail, where visitors can sample some of the region’s best wine producers. 

Where to Live in Salem

One of the biggest challenges of moving to a new city is figuring out where to live. Fortunately, Salem has lots of different kinds of neighborhoods to appeal to a diverse group of people. Here are some of the top neighborhoods in Salem: 

Bush Park: Considered one of the most walkable neighborhoods in Salem, Bush Park features historic architecture and charming homes. It is located a bit farther from downtown than other neighborhoods but is still an easy walk to the downtown area. Willamette University, Salem Hospital, and plenty of restaurants and theaters.

Jan Ree: The Jan Ree neighborhood is located in the far northeast corner of Salem and has long been regarded as one of the best affordable neighborhoods in the area. Though there aren’t any restaurants or shops within walking distance, you can easily get around by car and enjoy larger homes for less money. 

South Salem: If living by good schools is a top priority, South Salem fits the bill. South Salem neighborhoods have something for everyone. From gated communities to upscale neighborhoods on golf courses, there are plenty of excellent housing options. 

Ready to Move to Salem? Allied Van Lines Can Help

From the picturesque landscapes to the charming historic homes, Salem is a beautiful city to call home. If you are ready to move to Salem, let the professionals at Allied Van Lines assist you with your relocation needs. As a leader in the moving industry for more than 95 years, we have the knowledge and skills necessary to move you with ease. Allied offers a comprehensive list of moving services to fit any budget, so call today or start by getting a free quote using our convenient Instaquote tool.