If you are looking for a place to live with clean air, friendly people, and lots of culture, then you should consider the state of Washington.
With a diverse economy and several different landscapes and living environments throughout the state, there are cities and towns to fit everyone’s preferences.
Relocating to Washington
Famously successful American corporations Microsoft and Starbucks call this state home, and Washingtonians sport an amazing do-it-yourself attitude that keeps the misty Pacific Northwest on par culturally with much larger U.S. regions. Seattle may be the best-known city in Washington, but searching for a rental property will expose you to many other cities and neighborhoods.
Whether you are looking for a trendy Seattle condo, a house in Olympia or Wenatchee, a townhouse in Spokane, or a duplex in Walla Walla, our exhaustive listing of homes for rent in Washington State will help you find a home to meet your needs.
The Birthplace of Grunge
The city of Seattle is the largest and most popular place to live and work in Washington. With a beautiful skyline featuring the famous Space Needle as well as the amazing Mount Rainier in the background, Seattle is one of the most photogenic places you can find. If the thought of rainy days has you shivering, remember that rain is what creates those enormous slugs, and with arguably the best coffee shops in the country, you can snuggle up with a good book or your laptop and a hot cup of Joe.
Moving to Washington
Apart from the rain, there is not much in the way of extreme weather in Washington. Despite how far north it is, the winters are fairly mild as are the summers. Bicycle enthusiasts will love the bike-friendly streets, apart from some steep hills. When looking at condos, duplexes, or houses in Washington, be sure to check for any preexisting damage that you may want the landlord to repair, and brush up on renter rights in Washington. Read your lease thoroughly before signing and keep a copy handy after you make your move.
Amazing Outdoor Experiences
The northwest portion of Washington has by far the greatest population density of the state. It is home to Olympic National Park, America’s only temperate rain forest, and, although swimming may not be advisable at the nearby Washington coast beaches, the Northern Pacific Ocean offers wonderful views. If you visit at low tide, you can even check out the tide pools.
Shopping Around Town
If you are looking for houses for rent in Washington, you can find affordable prices in and around Seattle, and, farther east, you’ll find ranch- and farmland-based rentals. Because Seattle is not the largest city in terms of area, finding a cheap house in town can entail a hunt. However, whether you live near the U District, home of the University of Washington, or near Pike Place Market, where the waterfront seafood markets are known for the flying fish, you’ll find interesting and fun activities.
The continued success of large Washington-based corporations could mean a great career path for you and your family. With great schools around Seattle and Redmond, home of Microsoft’s headquarters, you’ll be happy you decided to move to the great Pacific Northwest.
Living in Washington
Washington State has two areas that differ in culture and climate, divided by the Cascade Mountain Ranges.
Western Washington is home to Seattle, where around 60% of the state’s residents live. It has a reputation as a liberty and somewhat trendy city, and is known as a high-tech mecca. Microsoft is based out of Redmond, a suburb of Seattle, and large internet and tech companies like Amazon, Expedia, and Nintendo also call the area home.
Seattle is also well-known for its coffee culture; It was the birthplace of Starbucks and literally has a coffee shop on almost every block. Other well-known Washington State companies include Boeing Aviation, Zillow, Redfin, Real.com, John C. Scott, Jones Soda, Nordstrom, Eddie Bauer, R.E.I., & Cosco.
Another thing Seattle is also known for is rain. While Western Washington gets fewer inches of rain per year than some other places in the US, a fine mist or drizzle is very common, making the area a place to avoid if you’re prone to seasonal depression. The upside to this is that it makes Washington state home to the Hoh Rainforest, one of the only temperate rainforests in the United States.
Eastern Washington is more conservative, with more small towns and open spaces. Spokane is the only really large city in the eastern part of the state, but there are several medium sized towns with plenty to do. Eastern Washington is also much drier and less green than the western half of the state, with plains and some desert spots, but with agricultural and forest areas as well.
Because the area east of the Cascades is more arid and less fashionable and populous, homes in the middle and the eastern parts of the state are often much more affordable than those in western cities like Seattle or Redmond. Employment can be a little harder to get, but the difference won’t be that great unless you are a software developer or a barista, because the lower and more spread out population means less competition for the jobs that are available.
Renting In Washington
Residential rentals in Washington are covered by the Residential Landlord-Tenant Act (RCW 59.18). The State Attorney General’s Office provides a long list of resources for both landlords and tenants concerned about rental laws at http://www.atg.wa.gov/ResidentialLT/default.aspx
Residential Landlord-Tenant Resources & Links (AG’s Office)
New Resident Resources (wa.gov)
Community & Social Services (wa.gov)
Experience Washington: http://www.experiencewa.com/
Washington State School Districts: http://www.k12.wa.us/maps/SDmainmap.aspx
Consumer Guide: Moving in Washington State: http://www.utc.wa.gov/consumers/Documents/2009-8-HouseholdGoods-ConsumerGuide-PrinterFriendly.pdf