Moving to Washington

2019 Moving to Washington Relocation Guide

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

  • Basic information about the Washington population, average yearly temperature and spoken languages.
  • Read about important cultural venues, the best places to live in and learn some fun facts about the state.
  • Check out the list of Pros and Cons of living in Washington before deciding to actually move.
  • Most importantly, find out all about Washington moving and living costs!

    Take a look at the list of housing, transportation and childcare costs, and learn about the living cost index in Washington.

  • Read all about moving costs.
  • All information regarding costs and pricing is compared with average US pricing.

  • You will also find very detailed information about the average yearly salary in Washington.
  • We prepared lists of moving to Washington tips.

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


Welcome to one of the most beautiful states, welcome to the state of rainforests, beaches, mountains, and plains. Welcome to the state of the space needle, the state of wine and apples, the state of education and economy growth. Welcome to the evergreen state, welcome to Washington.

The state of Washington represents the perfect combination of a growing economy, job opportunities, education, amazing cities, and breathtaking nature. Washington is home to numerous world-famous tourist attractions, the birthplace of many music genres and several world-recognized bands started in Washington. Washington is home to rich and diverse flora and fauna and it is one of the best states for exploring wildlife. With its diverse climate and geographic regions, Washington offers options for almost every choice of lifestyle.

Moving to Washington Pros & Cons

Washington state is one of the most beautiful USA states. It keeps attracting new residents with the perfect combination of nature, job opportunities, economic growth, and education opportunities. The state itself will offer you numerous different lifestyle opportunities, but you need to be prepared and get to know the biggest cons of moving to Washington. Go ahead and read all about the pros and cons of moving to Washington, get prepared for this step, the perks of living in Washington are endless:

Moving to Washington Pros

1. Affordable Housing Costs

If you are moving to Washington, you will be able to find affordable home prices everywhere except in Seattle. Washington housing costs are below the national average. Housing costs are lower than the national average in the state capitol too.

2. Job Opportunities

If you want to get a new job, you should move to Washington! Washington state job opportunities are amazing. There are numerous renowned employers with headquarters in Washington. You will have the opportunity to work for some of the big names including Google, Amazon, Boeing or Starbucks.

3. Education

Washington is home to several world-famous universities and it is one of the few states that will provide you with the opportunity to get your college degree in less than 4 years. Seattle is famous for educated and smart people, is known as the city in which residents read the most. There are also several top-rated school districts located in Washington.

4. Lower Taxes

Washington is one of the 7 US states that have no personal income tax, which can lower your overall tax burden significantly.

5. Nature:

The State of Washington is known as one of the most beautiful states in the USA. Nature will leave you breathless and wanting to explore further. The state is famous for its parks, natural preserves and you will have the opportunity to explore diverse landscapes.

6. Recreation and Activities

The State Of Washington is filled with numerous amazing state parks, national preserves and recreational areas that will provide you with the opportunity to enjoy almost any kind of outdoor activity. There are numerous hiking, biking, skiing, boating, fishing and wildlife exploring options. The only thing that can stop you is rain.

7. Art and Culture

The state of Washington is filled with world-famous art venues, museums, galleries, and historic spots. If you exploring arts Washington state is perfect for you, whether you are a fan of music, visual art or performance you will enjoy Washington.

8. Things To Do

You will never get bored in Washington, apart from amazing art venues and outdoor recreation opportunities you will also be able to visit numerous festivals and fairs, enjoy live music or sports events almost every day.

9. Great Music Scene

Mostly Seattle but the whole state of Washington too will provide you with amazing live music. Seattle played a significant role in the musical culture for many years, and it still has a very vibrant music scene. Many grunge rock bands started their careers in Washington but you will also be able to listen to the music of almost any genre here.

10. Overall Well-being

Washington residents report higher overall well-being. The state of Washington is famous for fresh fruit produce, amazing recreation opportunities and there is always something to do here.

Moving to Washington Cons

1. Living Costs

Washington has a higher cost of living than most other states. Everyday living costs are high and rents too, only taxes are lower than the national averages. Good thing is that the salaries are higher too and you will probably be able to cover all your expenses.

2. Crime Rates

Washington has a higher overall crime rate of crime than most other states. State ha the biggest problem with property crimes. Washington is ranked first in the number of property crimes all around the US.

3. Health Care

Washington’s quality of health care rating is lower than it is in most other states. This does not mean that there are no great hospitals in Washington.

4. Traffic

Washington was recently ranked the 2nd worst state for driving. Bad traffic in Washington includes drivers, roads, gas prices, congestion and commutes time.

5. Weather

If you love the sun, you want to reconsider your decision about moving to the state of Washington. Washington has fewer sunny days and a lot of rainy ones.

Washington Pros and Cons
Washington Fun Facts

Moving to Washington Tips

Moving to Washington is a big, challenging step and the state 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 Washington, 10 facts that will help you prepare for this step.

  • Choose The City Wisely - Each city in the state of Washington has its own character, its own pros, and cons. If you love being in the center of happenings, you should choose Seattle, but there is much more to Washington then Seattle.
  • Use The Public Transport - Traffic in Washington is bad but the public transportation systems are well developed and using it will reduce your commute time.
  • Buy a House - Washington state is one of the few states where buying a house is more affordable than renting one. The average mortgage rate is lower than the average monthly rent.
  • Washington Is Family Friendly - There are only a few places throughout the state where kids are not allowed, don't be surprised if you see them in beer pubs and bars.
  • Learn To Love Nature - Washington nature is breathtaking and most of your friends will want to go on outdoor adventures. Embrace the recreation opportunities and explore the state parks whenever the wheater allows it.
  • Washington Is Pet-Friendly - Whether you are a dog or a cat lover, or both you and your furry friends will enjoy living in the state of Washington. You can bring your pet almost anywhere with you.
  • Beer Industry Is Big - Washington residents love their beer and the beer industry is providing more than 40.000 jobs. There are almost 300 breweries throughout the state, and Washington is one of the largest beers making USA states.
  • Get Used To Getting Up Early - Most of the Washington residents love to get up early in the morning and go out for a walk or just enjoy the outdoors. Outdoor activities are the most popular hobby in the state, and you should prepare yourself for the new lifestyle.
  • Taste The Wine - California is the top one wine producer but Washington is the second. The wine scene is amazing in the state, and you should take a lot of road trips to explore it.
  • Umbrellas Are Not Popular - Rain is frequent in Washington but the state residents do not use umbrellas that much.

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

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

Moving Checklist

Best Places to Live in Washington

You know you want to live in The Evergreen State but you don't know which city to choose? Take a look at the list of top 6 best places to live in Washington according to niche. Every city in Washington has its pros and cons and you should choose wisely, there are a lot of factors that you should consider.













Washington 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.

Moving to Washington

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. Costs are calculated for moving entire two bedroom home, in the next three monts.

Moving From Cost
Vancouver (Canada) $3,400 - $4,700
Sydney (Australia) $4,500 - $6,100
Auckland (New Zealand) $4,400 - $6,100
Beijing (China) $4,400 - $6,100
Tokyo (Japan) $4,100 - $5,700
Dubai (United Arab Emirates) $4,100 - $6,900
Mexico City (Mexico) $3,800 - $6,200
London (United Kingdom) $4,700 - $6,300
Dublin (Ireland) $4,700 - $6,300
Singapore $4,500 - $6,200

Cultural Venues in Washington

Washington is filled with numerous art and culture venues, music and art festivals and it attracts art lovers from all around the world. Whether you are a fan of visual arts, performance, music or dance you will enjoy living in Washington. There are a lot of important historical spots around the state that you should visit. Take a look at our list of top 6 cultural venues in Washington.

Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture

Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture

Cultural Organization

  • City: Spokane
  • Adress: 2316 West First Avenue, 99201
  • Admission Fee: $0 - $10
The Olympic Sculpture Park

The Olympic Sculpture Park

Sculpture Park

  • City: Seattle
  • Adress: 2901 Western Avenue, 98121
  • Admission Fee: $5 - $22
The Washington Center For The Performing Arts

The Washington Center For The Performing Arts

Performing Arts Facility

  • City: Olympia
  • Adress: 512 Washington St, 98501
  • Admission Fee: Depends on the event
Bellevue Arts Museum

Bellevue Arts Museum

Museum Of Arts

  • City: Bellevue
  • Adress: 510 Bellevue Way NE, 98004
  • Admission Fee: $0 - $15
Museum of Northwest Art

Museum of Northwest Art

Art Museum

  • City: La Conner
  • Adress: 121 First Street, 98257
  • Admission Fee: Free
Museum Of Glass

Museum Of Glass

Glass Art Museum

  • City: Tacoma
  • Adress: 1801 Dock Street, 98402
  • Admission Fee: $0 - $15

Washington Living Costs

Compared with other parts of the country, Washington State is a rather expensive place to live in. Costs of living in Washington State vary throughout the county. Everyday living costs are above national averages but housing costs are reasonable almost everywhere, except Seattle. Taxes are lower than in most other USA states. Moving to a new state is always challenging and you need to learn all about the costs. For more information about living costs visit numbeo or BestPlaces.

How much are utilities in Seattle

  • 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:


Austin VS US Average

Average Living Costs in Washington

Cost of Living Washington United States
Housing 164.9 100
Transportation 113.6 100
Utilities 74 100
Grocery 101.1 100
Health 83.8 100
Other 99.4 100
Housing Buy per Sq Ft Monthly Rent
Seattle $698.81 $2,086.83
Spokane $188.02 $834.00
Tacoma $261.96 $1,237.67
Vancouver $252.93 $1,172.92
Bellevue $598.47 $2,033.76
Everett $291.68 $1,323.69
US Average $242.48 $1,294.88
Transportation One Way Ticket Monthly Pass
Seattle $2.75 $99.00
Spokane $2.00 $50.00
Tacoma $2.00 $72.00
Vancouver $2.00 $62.00
Bellevue $2.75 $99.00
Everett $2.62 $100.00
US Average $2.25 $70.00
Child Care Preschool Primary School
Seattle $1,745.83 $21,963.64
Spokane $775.00 8,530.00
Tacoma $1,266.67 $18,266.67
Vancouver $936.00 $18,266.67
Bellevue $1,000.00 $21,963.64
Everett $1,000.00 18,266.67
US Average $896.05 $16,125.51

Work and Salary

Average Yearly Salary in Washington is $72,000

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

  • Software Engineer - $103,000/yr
  • Project Manager - $76,000/yr
  • Operations Manager - $65,000/yr
  • Senior Software Engineer - $132,000/yr
  • Mechanical Engineer - $74,000/yr
  • Software Development Engineer - $111,000/yr
  • Software Developer - $85,000/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 Washington US Average
Cashier $12.92/h $10.57/h
Receptionist $15.50/h $13.34/h
Repair Technician $18.13/h $16.24/h
Actor $11.06/h $11.06/h
Registered Nurse $38.75/h $33.87/h
Secretary $19.12/h $13.96/h
Preschool Teacher $15.57/h $12.52/h
High School Teacher $19.88/h $19.20/h
Lawyer $68.54/h $65.62/h

Top 6 Universities in Washington

There are almost 300 school districts in the state of Washington, serviced by nine Educational Service Districts. Elementary and secondary schools are under the jurisdiction of the Washington State Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI). The state also has several public arts-focused high schools including Vancouver school of Arts and Academics, The Center School and Tacoma School of the Arts. There are more than 40 institutions of higher education in Washington. Take a look at the list of top 6 universities in Washington, according to UniRank.

University of Washington

University of Washington

Acronuym: UW

  • City: Seattle
  • Address: 1400 NE Campus Parkway, 98195-4550
  • Founded: 1861
Washington State University

Washington State University

Acronuym: WSU

  • City: Pullman
  • Address: French Administration Building, 99164-1009
  • Founded: 1890
Western Washington University

Western Washington University

Acronuym: WWU

  • City: Bellingham
  • Address: 516 High Street, 98225-9008
  • Founded: 1893
The Evergreen State College

The Evergreen State College

Acronuym: TESC

  • City: Olympia
  • Address: 2700 Evergreen Parkway NW, 98505-0001
  • Founded: 1967
Central Washington University

Central Washington University

Acronuym: CWU

  • City: Ellensburg
  • Address: 400 East University Way, 98926-7463
  • Founded: 1891
Seattle University

Seattle University

Acronuym: Seattle U

  • City: Seattle
  • Address: 900 Broadway, 98122-4340
  • Founded: 1891

Washington - Important Information

State of Washington

Washington Seal

Washington is the 18th largest state, with an area of 71,362 square miles and the 13th most populous state, with more than 7.4 million people. Approximately 60 percent of Washington's residents live in the Seattle metropolitan area. Washington is one of the wealthiest and most socially progressive states in the country. The state consistently ranks among the best for life expectancy and low unemployment. Washington is a leading lumber producer, the largest producer of apples, hops, pears, and sweet cherries.

  • State Capital:


  • Largest City (By Population):


  • Official State Website:

  • Official Language:


  • Spoken Languages:

    Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Russian, Tagalog, Korean, German and other.

  • Dimensions:

    Length - 240 mi (400 km)

    Width - 360 mi (580 km)

Washington Population:

  • According to the last census (2010): 6,724,540
  • According to the latest estimate (2018): 7,535,591
Washington Demographics by Race
White 5,500,837 76.72%
Asian 578,822 3.03%
Other Race 225,497 8.07%
Black or African American 261,743 3.65%
Two or More Races 394,733 5.51%
Native American 94,754 1.32%
Native Hawaiian & Pacific Islander 46,071 0.64%

Washington - Average Yearly Temperature

Temperature Annual High Annual Low Average
Seattle 18.3°C 2.4°C 10.35°C
Spokane 16.7°C 2.1°C 9.4°C
Tacoma 18.3°C 2.4°C 10.35°C
Vancouver 17.6°C 2.7°C 10.15°C
Bellevue 18.3°C 2.4°C 10.35°C
Everett 18.3°C 2.4°C 10.35°C

Washington - Crime rates

Very low: 0 - 20, Low: 20 - 40, Moderate: 40 - 60, High: 60 - 80, Very high: 80 - 100. By numbeo.

City Crime Index Safety Index Level of crime
Seattle 46.51 53.49 50.09
Spokane 52.88 47.12 58.97
Tacoma 50.52 49.48 60.40
Vancouver 31.53 68.47 36.93
Bellevue 25.97 74.03 20.42
Everett 69.61 30.39 75.00

Famous National Parks in Washington

Nature is one of the Washingtons' most admirable features. The diversity of landscapes will provide you with endless recreational and sightseeing opportunities. From mountains, rainforests, planes, beaches, lakes, volcanos and hot springs to the protected areas of wildlife. Forests cover 52% of the state's land area, mostly west of the North Cascades. Washington has a variety of National Park Service units and three national parks - the Olympic National Park, North Cascades National Park, and Mount Rainier National Park. Olympic National Park's area has been designated as wilderness under the National Wilderness Preservation System.

Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park

Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park

Dry Falls State Park was the site of a waterfall formed during the Missoula Floods which was ten times the size of Niagara Falls. The park will provide you with amazing sightseeing opportunities, hiking trails, boating, and camping spots.

  • Nearest city: Coulee City
  • Nearest big city: Spokane
  • Visitors per year: -
North Cascades National Park

North Cascades National Park

North Cascades Park features two national recreation areas, several national forests and wilderness areas. The park covers more than two million acres of rugged mountains and 90 percent of the park is designated as the Stephen Mather Wilderness.

  • Nearest city: Sedro-Woolley
  • Nearest big city: Bellingham
  • Visitors per year: 30,085 (in 2018)
Mount Rainier National Park

Mount Rainier National Park

Mount Rainier Park is the fifth national park established in the US. The park features valleys, waterfalls, subalpine meadows, and 91,000 acres of old-growth forest. Mount Rainier is one of the most iconic peaks and most scenic volcanos in the USA.

  • Nearest city: Tacoma
  • Nearest big city: Tacoma
  • Visitors per year: 1,518,491 (in 2018)
Olympic National Park

Olympic National Park

The Park is located on the Olympic Peninsula and it features breathtaking coastlines, alpine areas, forests, and rainforests. The park will provide you with numerous fishing, boating, hiking, backpacking, camping, and many other outdoor activity opportunities.

  • Nearest city: Port Angeles
  • Nearest big city: Olympia
  • Visitors per year: 3,104,455 (in 2018)
Deception Pass State Park

Deception Pass State Park

Deception Pass State Park is Washington's most popular state park located between the northern tip of Whidbey Island and Fidalgo Island. The park is connected by a pair of Deception Pass Bridges that were added to the National Register of Historic Places.

  • Nearest city: Anacortes
  • Nearest big city: Bellingham
  • Visitors per year: 2,000,000 (Annually)
Lake Wenatchee State Park

Lake Wenatchee State Park

Lake Wenatchee State Park is split into two parts, the north shore park, and the south shore park, separated by the Wenatchee River. The park will provide you with breathtaking views of Lake Wenatchee and numerous recreational outdoor activities.

  • Nearest city: Leavenworth
  • Nearest big city: Everett
  • Visitors per year: -