Moving to Portland

2019 Moving to Portland Relocation Guide

Welcome to 2019 Ultimate Moving to Portland Relocation Guide! Before this big step, find out all important information about Portland.

  • Basic information about Portland zip and area codes, average yearly temperature and spoken languages.
  • Read about Portland neighborhoods and learn some fun facts about the city.
  • Check out the list of Pros and Cons of living in Portland before deciding to actually move.
  • Most importantly, find out all about Portland moving and living costs!

    Take a look at the list of basic daily expenses, transportation costs, basic leisure, and recreation costs and housing and utilities cost in Portland.

  • Read all about moving and shipping costs.
  • Learn about flight costs from Portland.

    Every information regarding costs and pricing is compared with average US pricing.

  • You will also find very detailed information about the average yearly salary in Portland, as well as the information about schools and education.
  • We prepared lists of moving to Portland tips.

For moving tips in general check out our Moving Checklist and Paperwork page.


Welcome to the “City of Roses” the homeland of hipsters. Welcome to Portland, the city of many names, where differences are celebrated. Portland is a warehouse for all the new movements and hip ideas of 21. century. Embrace the neverending laid-back atmosphere coming from the Portlanders, or is it Portlanidans? Citizens of Portland are one weird group of bike lovers, vegans, hipsters, hippies, skiers, hikers, entrepreneurs and everything else. Because of the constantly growing progressive political values in this city, Portland is considered to be the “bastion of counterculture.”

Diversity is the beauty of Portland. In this city, you can raise chickens in your backyard while working for one of the 1200 technology companies. Nature in Portland is breathless, Willamette River separates the city's east and west neighborhoods, connected by numerous bridges. Surrounded by hills but relatively flat, Portland is perfect for long walks.

Originated from Austin, “Keep Portland Weird” became a popular informal city slogan and the mantra of the resident. Local businesses are as important in Portland as they are in Austin. Portland has more microbreweries per capita than any other city in the world, but the local beer industry is not the only local industry that is thriving in this city. Moving to Portland will be one of the most unique and exciting experiences in your life, so welcome, Portland is always open for new people with new ideas.

Moving to Portland Pros & Cons

Learning about Portland pros and cons will help you get prepared for living in this beautiful city. There are too many stereotypes about this city, and the city is too big and too diverse to be stereotypical. If you are moving to Portland you will find a lot of things that will take time to get used to, but once you do, you will never want to leave. Go ahead and read all about the pros and cons of moving to Portland, get prepared for this huge step and embrace all the perks of living in “The City of Roses”:

Moving to Portland Pros

1. Job Opportunities

Much like the rest of the West Coast, technology is thriving here. There are a lot of tech startups, and there are also some established tech companies, like Intel, which is the largest employer in the city. Apart from technology, Portland is the perfect place for raising small local business. Some of the most popular industries in Portland are food-related industries, athletic and footwear manufacturing, healthcare industry and of course, breweries are one of the leading industries in Portland.

2. Coffee, Wine, and Beer

Portland microbreweries are widely famous. There are over 60 of them in the city and craft beer choices are endless. Portland is one of the best craft beer cities in the world. Apart from great beer, you will also enjoy the great wine, there are over 460 wineries in Oregon and some of them are really close to Portland. There are also numerous independent coffee roasters in Portland and it was ranked as No. 1 coffee city in America.

3. No Sales Tax

Portland is one of the few large cities in the United States where the price tag is completely accurate. There is no sales tax that you need to worry about. When you start living here. If you manage your income smartly, you will pay a lower total tax rate, even with the higher income rate.

4. The Outdoor Lifestyle

There are plenty of outdoor activities that you can enjoy in Portland. Even if you are not into climbing, hiking, and other outdoor adventures, you will probably embrace them when you move here. Weather in Portland is beautiful from time to time, and you will want to take advantage of everything that nature offers.

5. Local Stores

You won't have to worry about the food quality here. Shopping locally will provide you with much more choices. Everything is local in Portland, from grocery stores to clothing boutiques, local coffee shops, food trucks, and breweries.

6. Breathtaking Nature

The grass is greener in Portland. There is a lot of rain in this city, which means that the trees are healthy and tall. Portlanders share a genuine love for the environment and they are very protective of their natural resources. You can enjoy almost any kind of landscape here, there are hills, rivers, waterfalls, mountains and even the desert is nearby. If you are a type of person that needs to get away from the city crowd from time to time, Portland will be the perfect city for you.

7. Level of Walkability

Portland is perfect for walking and biking. You can get anywhere on foot and avoid the public transportation crowds or the famous slow portland traffic.

8. Relaxed and Causal Lifestyle

You will actually save many on clothing because you won't need to get dressed up very often. Dress code in Portland is casual, reflecting the general lifestyle and atmosphere. There are also many companies that will not bother you for your tattoos or piercings. Also, nothing is too weird, the most random outfits will probably be complimented.

9. Great Music

Live entertainment opportunities in Portland are endless. You will hear some of the best bands on your night. Nightlife in Portland is diverse, and you will always find something to do. Live music is all around the city, and you will enjoy the new sounds.

10. Art & Culture

You will enjoy the art scene in Portland. The city is home to great classical performing arts institutions, and the music scene is one of the most vibrant in the United States. Street art is also a big part of the city, there is even and Original Art Mural permit, meaning that the city allows and encourages street art.

Moving to Portland Cons

1. Earthquakes

Portland is part of the Cascadia megathrust fault. This fault has been relatively quiet in the past decades but there are some researches that say that there is a chance that big earthquake will hit this area in the short future. This is one of the biggest cons of moving to Portland, you will have to deal with the stress of constantly expecting “The Big One.”

2. Weather

The weather in Portland can be both a pro and a con but it still is one of the biggest negatives about the city. Winters can be really cold, and you will have to deal with some snowstorms. There is a lot of rain in Portland too, so you will have to bring your umbrella with you all the time. Summers can be extremely hot from time to time, but on the bright side, you will get to experience all four seasons in here.

3. Higher Property Taxes

Property taxes in Portland are higher than in other places in the Pacific Northwest. You’ll also pay a tax on any personal property used for business purposes. The property taxes are still lower than the national average and there is no sales tax.

4. High Rent Prices

Portland used to be affordable, but with today the rent prices are rising with the growth of job opportunities and population. Portland has a free-market system, and landlords are charging whatever they think the population will support. Sometimes, the rents can go up for 15% from year to year.

5. Traffic

The traffic in Portland is not as bad as in other major cities, and rush hours are not as crowded but for some reason, drivers are extremely slow here. The pro is that it is safe, but it is very time-consuming too. Sometimes, the roads will make no sense and you will feel like the city was built only for walking.

6. Traveling

If you plan o travel a lot, this will be a really big con for you. Finding direct flights is hard and flight gat delayed a lot because of the weather.

7. Public Education

Public schools system is not bad, but there are some big differences among the schools. You just need to plan your move right and choose the right neighboorhood, there are many great public schools in Portland.

Portland Pros and Cons
Portland Fun Facts

Moving to Portland Tips

Moving to Portland is a big, challenging step and the city itself offers so many different opportunities. Whether you are moving for work or for pleasure you will find our tips useful. Here are 10 TIPS about moving to Portland, 10 facts that will help you prepare for this step.

  • Explore the Neighborhoods - Before moving to Portland, get to know the different neighborhoods and figure out which one will be the best fit for your unique interests and lifestyle. Each neighboorhood offers a different experience, and this is also a very important tip if you are moving with your family.
  • Learn About Public Transportation - Public transportation in Portland is ranked among the best in the world. There are plenty of options for getting around town so that can be a little confusing from time to time. Plan your trips ahead and make sure you know your best options.
  • Embrace the Outdoor Activities - Nature is one of the biggest perks of living in Portland, there are numerous options for spending the day out of the house. Take advantage of everything nature has to offer, explore the landscapes, visit mountains, hills, and deserts, enjoy the rivers.
  • Recycle - Recycling in Portland is strict, almost everyone is recycling here. Take it seriously. Portlanders are very protective of the natural environment. If you need any help, let them know. They will be glad that you want to save nature too.
  • Get Prepared For The Rain - As mentioned before, it rains a lot. Make sure you have enough clothes that will help you get through the rainy days. Portlanders are not big fans of the umbrellas, but you can have one until you get used to the rain.
  • Learn About the Portland Bridges - Get to know the names of the bridges, there are plenty of them and knowing the names will help you navigate through the city. Also, Portlanders are very proud of their bridges, so you will want to know them if you plan to get along with the locals.
  • Shop Local - There are not many chain stores in Portland. Explore the local stores, soon, you will realize that you have a lot more choices if you shop from the local store, and you also won't have to worry about the quality of the product.
  • Enjoy the Craft Beverages - Portland is filled with local breweries, coffee shops, distilleries and all sorts of food stores. Embrace the local food, there is no Starbucks in Portland but you will be able to find your own favorite coffee.
  • Take Up New Hobbies - Biking is mandatory. Other popular hobbies in Portland are knitting, reading, hiking, growing food in the backyard or even small animal.
  • Be Careful When Talking About Portlandia - Portlanders are not big fans of the show, you can talk about any other tv series or movie, but if you really need to talk about Portlandia try to find someone who recently moved to Portland too.

Check out our printable Stage-by-Stage MOVING CHECKLIST.

This ultimate moving checklist will help you complete your moving without stress.

Moving Checklist

Portland Moving Costs

There are certain costs associated with moving that most people tend to neglect. Even if you have opted for a self-moving job that does not involve hiring a professional moving company, you will have to pay extra for certain things. Here is a list of moving and packing costs you may have forgotten.

  • Packing Supplies

    If you plan to move on a budget and want to fo the packing yourself, you must know that you will need to invest in packing supplies like boxes, tape or bubble wrap.

  • Moving Insurance

    During the move something almost always brake. Getting moving insurance is always recommended. Most of the moving companies offer insurance and you can decide how much to get, considering how valuable your things are.

  • Moving Start-up Costs

    For renting new space start-up costs include things like your first and last month’s rent, a security deposit, a pet deposit or an application fee.

    If you are buying start-up costs are much bigger. They include closing costs for your new mortgage which is often measured in thousands of dollars. Average closing costs typically range from 2% to 5% of the cost of your home. These costs include things like a fee for running your credit report, a loan origination fee, attorney’s fees, the cost of a home inspection, a title search, an appraisal fee, and a survey fee, etc.

  • Boarding Your Pets

    You can expect extra costs for boarding your pets. Often enough, people tend to move their pets overnight, that way pets are not exposed to the stress.

  • Stair Fees

    Some of the moving companies will ask you to pay a stair fee.

  • Moving Large Items Fees

    It is always best to check with moving companies about extra fees and inform them about your large items, like piano or pool table, in advance. That way you will avoid surprises on a moving day.

  • Valuable Artworks or Decorative Pieces Are Often Handled by Specialised Movers

    There are professionals who are trained to handle valuable items. Packing and moving valuable items is more complex than regular moving. So you can expect to pay extra on moving those kinds of pieces.

  • Storage Space Renting

    Sometimes, you don't want to bring all of your things to your new home, but you don't want to throw them either. If you find yourself in this situation you will have to find storage space for those things. Having to store items could mean an additional monthly expense.

  • Re-buying Items Once You've Moved In

    While you shouldn't get rid of everything before a move, there are going to be some items that you're not going to want to bring to your new space.

  • Tips For Your Movers

    Your movers are doing a lot of hard work and heavy lifting, and they deserve to be compensated. Just note, that tips are always expected by your movers.

Portland Shipping Costs

Here you can find a list of shipping costs. Please note that the cost of international shipping (calculated with reallymoving) is solely the cost of shipping itself, while the cost of shipping within the United States (calculated with also includes other additional expenses. Costs are calculated for moving entire two bedroom home, in the next three monts.

International Cost
Vancouver (Canada) $1,400 - $4,700
Sydney (Australia) $4,400 - $6,000
Auckland (New Zealand) $4,400 - $6,000
Beijing (China) $4,300 - $5,900
Tokyo (Japan) $4,200 - $5,700
Dubai (United Arab Emirates) $4,100 - $6,800
Mexico City (Mexico) $3,700 - $6,200
London (United Kingdom) $4,600 - $6,300
Dublin (Ireland) $4,600 - $6,200
Singapore $4,400 - $6,200
United States Cost
San Francisco, California $2,676 - $3,351
New York, New York $5,080 - $6,486
Washington D.C. $4,862 - $6,199
Chicago, Illinois $4,191 - $5,324
Austin, Texas $4,159 - $5,281
Boston, Massachusetts $5,095 - $6,503
Miami, Florida $5,296 - $6,764
Seattle, Washington $2,066 - $2,556
San Diego, California $3,247 - $4,096
Denver, Colorado $3,294 - $4,155

Portland Living Costs

Portland is definitely more affordable than New York, but it is one of the top 10 most expensive cities to live in the USA. Housing is the most challenging but even the everyday expenses are much higher than in other major cities. If moving to Portland is the next step you will probably need to get informed about the cost of basic and personal necessities in this city. For more information about living costs visit numbeo or expatistan.

How much are utilities in Portland

  • 85m2 Apartment Monthly Utilities, Basic (Electricity, Water, Cooling, Heating, Garbage):


  • 1 Min. Of Prepaid Mobile Tariff Local (No Discounts or Plans):


  • Internet (60 Mbps or More, Unlimited Data, Cable/adsl):


  • Mortgage Interest Rate in Percentages (%), for 20 Years Fixed-rate, Yearly:


Portland VS US Average
Food Portland US Average
Meal in Inexpensive Restaurant $15 $14.50
Mcmeal at Mcdonalds (or Equivalent) $7.5 $7.00
Water (1.5 Liter Bottle) $1.79 $1.45
Milk (Regular), (1 gallon) $3.27 $3.11
Loaf of Fresh White Bread (1 lb) $2.72 $2.36
Eggs (Regular) (12) $2.71 $2.27
Chicken Breasts (1 lb) $5.09 $3.85
Potato (1 lb) $0.95 $1.1
Apples (1 lb) $2.41 $2.02
Local Cheese (1 lb) $6.08 $4.74
Child Care Portland US Average
Preschool (or Kindergarten), Monthly $1,214.96 $886.18
International Primary School, Yearly $17,968.67 $17,116.12
Self Care Portland US Average
Private Doctor Short Visit $171 $112
Box of Antibiotics $24 $17
Tube of Toothpaste $2.25 $1.78
Hair Shampoo 2-in-1 $4.68 $4.77
Deodorant, Roll-on $3.54 $3.39
Toilet Paper - 4 Rolls $3.4 $3.41
1 Box of 32 Tampons $8 $7
Transportation Portland US Average
Local Transport - One-way Ticket $2.5 $2.20
Local Transport - Monthly Pass $97 $70.00
Taxi Start (Normal Tariff) $3.25 $3.25
Taxi 1km (Normal Tariff) $2.6 $1.71
Gasoline (1 gallon) $3.22 $2.77
Housing Portland US Average
Apartment (1 Bedroom) - City Centre $1,532.45 $1,291.27
Apartment (1 Bedroom) $1,139.89 $1,015.10
Buy Apartment in City Centre - Per Sq Ft $371.5 $239.62
Buy Apartment - Per Sq Ft $252.78 $173.92
Hourly Rate for Cleaning Help $24 $21
Leisure and Recreation Portland US Average
Fitness Club Monthly Fee, 1 Adult $43.12 $36.17
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour) $15.89 $15.14
2 Movie Tickets $24 $25
2 Theater Tickets (Best Available Seats) $148 $171
Coke/pepsi (Small Bottle) $1.92 $1.80
Cappuccino (Regular) $4.2 $4.07
Domestic Beer (500ml) $5 $6.00
Bottle of Wine $14.5 $12.00
1 Cocktail Drink $11 $12.00
Marlboro Cigarettes 20 Pack $6.83 $7.25
Clothing Portland US Average
Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 or Similar) $48.07 $43.12
Summer Dress (Zara, H&m or Similar) $34.93 $34.67
Pair of Nike Running Shoes $79.84 $73.84
Pair of Men Leather Shoes $93.96 $94.36
Laundry Detergent (3 L.) $9 $11

Work and Salary

Average Yearly Salary in Portland is $56,624

Currently, most popular and best-paid jobs in Portland are:

  • Software Engineer - $81,817/yr
  • Operations Manager - $61,395/yr
  • Project Manager - $67,312/yr
  • Account Manager - $55,153/yr
  • Graphic Designer - $46,778/yr
  • Senior Software Engineer - $112,188/yr
  • Mechanical Engineer - $70,962/yr

All the information is provided by Glassdoor and Payscale where you can get more detailed information about the job of interest. If you don't have a specific job in mind, you can also check this list of 10 common jobs and professions in the United States with an average salary for each of them.

Job Portland US Average
Cashier $24,995/yr $22,711/yr
Receptionist $33,187/yr $29,844/yr
Repair Technician $34,921/yr $32,606/yr
Actor $38,062/yr $37,208/yr
Registered Nurse $79,706/yr $69,270/yr
Secretary $31,376/yr $31,279/yr
Preschool Teacher $29,529/yr $28,973/yr
High School Teacher $49,546/yr $51,027/yr
Lawyer $106,091/yr $117,188/yr
Truck Driver $56,185/yr $57,062/yr

Portland - Important Information

City of Portland

Portland Seal

Portland is the largest and most populous city in the U.S. state of Oregon and the seat of Multnomah County. The city is a major port in the Willamette Valley region of the Pacific Northwest, at the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia rivers. Portland is currently the 25th most populated city in the United States and the second-most populous in the Pacific Northwest.

  • Official City Website:

  • Official State Website:

  • Official Language:


  • Spoken Languages:

    Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Russian, German, French, Korean, Japanese, and other.

  • Area Codes:

    503 and 971

  • Zip Codes:


  • 145.09 sq mi (375.78 km2),:

    Land: 133.43 sq mi (345.58 km2)

    Water: 11.66 sq mi (30.20 km2)

Portland Population:

  • According to the last census (2010): 583,776
  • According to the latest estimate (2018): 653,115
Portland Demographics by Race
White 487,660 77.37%
Asian 49,200 7.81%
Other Race 14,399 2.28%
Black or African American 35,929 5.70%
Two or More Races 34,358 5.45%
Native American 4,871 0.77%
Native Hawaiian & Pacific Islander 3,914 0.62%

Taxes in Portland

Single Filing Status, Average Portland Salary ($56,624) Taxes:

  • Income Tax: - $14,206
  • Sales Tax: - $0
  • Fuel Tax: - $211
  • Property Tax$: - $2,736
  • Total Estimated: - $17,153

Percent of income to taxes = 33%.

For more personal information calculate your taxes with smartasset.

Portland - Average Yearly Temperature

  • Hours of sunshine: 2,341 hours
  • Average Rainfall: 914 mm
  • Annual high temperature: 17.3°C
  • Annual low temperature: 7.6°C
  • Average temperature: 12.45°C

Portland - Crime rate

Portland struggles with crime-related problems in certain areas, in most city parts crime rates are moderate or low. Homelessness is an issue in Portland, and there are some areas that yoy will want to avoid. Portland crime index by numbeo is 48.13 (moderate).

  • Level of crime: - 53.28 (moderate)
  • Property crime index: - 62.40 (moderate)
  • Violent crime index: - 42.50 (moderate)
  • Corruption and bribery: - 36.09 (moderate)

Flight Costs from Portland

List of flight costs, from Portland to other major cities. Based on the cheapest flights from skyscanner, booked one month ahead.

  • Vancouver (Canada): $118 (direct)
  • Sydney (Australia): $572 (1 stop)
  • Auckland (New Zealand): $593 (2 stops)
  • Beijing (China): $417 (1 stop)
  • Tokyo (Japan): $478 (2 stops)
  • Dubai (United Arab Emirates): $382 (3 stops)
  • Mexico City (Mexico): $137 (1 stop)
  • London (United Kingdom): $300 (1 stop)
  • Dublin (Ireland): $308 (2 stops)
  • Singapore: $427 (2 stops)

Portland Reviews