Minneapolis is a city surrounded by water. Long before it was colonized by Europeans in 1680, the Minneapolis area was (and still is) home to the Dakota Sioux, whose name for it is Bdeóta Othúŋwe, or “Many Lakes City.” Years later, the power of the Mississippi River helped give rise to what would become booming lumber and flour mill industries, which helped Minneapolis take off as it developed in the late 1800s.
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What you need to know about Minneapolis before you move
There’s a lot to consider before deciding whether you should move to a new city. Most importantly, does Minneapolis align with your lifestyle preferences? Will you be able to enjoy both work and play? To get a better sense of what this city has to offer, take a look at some of the factors that come with living in Minneapolis below.
1. The cost of living is fairly average
With an index score of 117.1, housing will likely be the most expensive part of your living expenses in Minneapolis. Still, it’s not quite as expensive as other comparable U.S. cities. The average rent for a typical one-bedroom apartment in the Twin Cities falls between $1,200 and $1,600 per month.
Grocery and utility costs hover right around the national average. You could expect a gallon of milk to cost you about $5.09.
The city’s job market is also strong and continues to grow—recent unemployment rates were some of the lowest on record. The tech industry is booming here, and other growing sectors include hospitality, transportation, finance, mining, and logging.
Minneapolis also recently got a boost to its minimum wage, which is now $13.50 per hour for small businesses and $15 per hour for businesses that employ more than 100 people. Census data places the median annual income in Minneapolis at about $66,000 per year.
2. There’s a great live music scene
It shouldn’t come as a surprise that the city that brought you artists like Lizzo and Prince has a rich music scene. With plenty of legendary live music venues ranging from intimate coffeehouses to massive outdoor music festivals, you’ll get your live entertainment fix all year long.
3. It’s a great place to get outdoors
Minneapolis has over 100 miles of trails for hikers and bikers to explore. One favorite park among locals,
Minnehaha Regional Park, even boasts a waterfall within city limits!
In total, Minneapolis has about 160 city parks to enjoy. During the summer months, many of them play host to free outdoor entertainment, including concerts, movie showings, and various festivals and programs.
Plus, Minneapolis’s lakeside parks mean you have ample opportunity for swimming, boating, and fishing.
4. Your dog might love Minneapolis just as much as you do
Plus, several restaurants and breweries have dog-friendly patios, and some even have special menus dedicated to your four-legged friend.
5. Minneapolis is more walkable than most
Having a car in Minneapolis can definitely make getting around the city a lot easier (especially during winter), but it’s not the only way.
6. The local sports scene talks a big game
Whether you’re a fan of baseball, football, basketball, hockey, or soccer, there’s a sports team for you in Minneapolis. Most obviously, the city is home to the Minnesota Twins, the Minnesota Vikings, the WNBA’s Minnesota Lynx, the NBA’s Minnesota Timberwolves, the Minnesota Wild hockey team, and the Minnesota United FC soccer team.
7. Prepare for some cold winters
One of the most brutal parts of living in Minneapolis—especially for pedestrians—is cold winters. Luckily, the downtown area’s
Skyway Systemthat runs between buildings can make some of your errands a little warmer in winter. At more than 9.5 collective miles, it’s the largest system of its kind in the world.
So, if you’re from a city that stays relatively warm year-round, you’ll want to prepare to brave those below-freezing temperatures.
On the bright side, that winter weather means you can enjoy winter recreation like ice fishing, skating, skiing, sledding, or hockey. Or, if you’d rather not deal with the snow and stay indoors, you can get used to the pleasure of bundling up inside with a cup of hot tea, coffee, or cocoa.
Does Minneapolis live up to the hype?
Whether it’s worth it to live in Minneapolis depends on what you can afford and what you’re looking for in a lifestyle. If you’re a fan of pro sports teams, live entertainment, and outdoor recreation, or if you love bringing your dog along to places with you and don’t mind cold, snowy winters, Minneapolis is definitely worth considering.
Finding a place to live in Minneapolis
One of the most important steps in making a move to Minneapolis is figuring out where you’re actually going to live.
While prices continue to rise, the housing market in Minneapolis isn’t quite as expensive as other major U.S. cities.
The cost of rent will vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. As far as averages go, you might find a studio
apartmentfor about $1,300, while a 3-bedroom apartment could cost you upwards of $3,000 per month.
If you’re looking to buy a house in Minneapolis, the median home sale price is about $336,000, which is up 4.7% over the last year, according to
To find the right Minneapolis neighborhood for you, establish a budget and look at apartment and real estate listings to see what kind of homes fall within your price range. To further narrow down your options, make a list of locations and amenities you’d like to be close to and see which ones align with your budget.
As you search for the right Minneapolis neighborhood to call home, here are some places worth looking into:
- Most iconic neighborhoods: Downtown West, Downtown East, South Uptown
- Best neighborhoods if you’ve got kids: Page, Fulton, Hale
- Best neighborhoods for foodies: North Loop, Loring Park, Southwest
- Best neighborhoods to buy a house: Page, Kenny, Hale
- Most affordable neighborhoods: McKinley, Morris Park, Willard-Hay
If you’re able, it also helps to visit the neighborhoods you’re considering before you move to get a sense of the atmosphere and whether you think you’ll enjoy the surrounding locations.
Pro Tip If you’d prefer to cut down on rent costs without commuting from a suburb, consider finding a roommate or two to share an apartment with.
Moving to Minneapolis checklist
Okay, it’s official—you’re moving to Minneapolis! As you prepare for your big move, here are some items worth adding to your moving checklist.
Before you go
Before starting your new chapter in your new Minneapolis home, be sure to:
- If you plan to DIY your move,reserve your U-Haulin advance.
- For long-distance moves, some circumstances might make it more convenient toship your carinstead of driving it to your new home.
- Update your address and set up mail forwarding with theUSPSto avoid missing any important communications.
- Let important contacts know you’re movingas well—that includes your landlord, employer, insurance provider(s), and utility provider(s).
After you get there
It might take a little while to
settle intoyour Minneapolis home. In the meantime, there are couple more things you may want to take care of after you’ve unpacked the last of your boxes:
- Get to know your new city! Now that you’re finally here, start building your lists of go-to restaurants, parks, and shops to enjoy Minneapolis the way only a local can.
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Is it worth moving to Minneapolis?
Minneapolis is worth your consideration if you’re looking for a city with great food, entertainment, and outdoor recreation options. You’ll just have to be ready to deal with the harsh Minnesota winters.
How much money do I need to move to Minneapolis?
How much money you need to move to Minneapolis will largely depend on your budget and lifestyle. When it comes to the move itself, you might spend somewhere between several hundred to several thousand dollars depending on the size of the move and the distance.
If you're renting an apartment in Minneapolis for $1,600 per month and want to spend no more than a third of your income on housing, you’d need to earn at least $4,800 per month.