Reasons to Move to Iowa City, Iowa

View of old capital building downtown Iowa City during fall

Are you thinking about moving to Iowa City? If yes, you’ll need all the information possible to make your decision! Lucky for you, the storage experts at Moove In Self Storage put together the following guide on what makes Iowa City a great place to live! The guide is packed with facts, tips, and advice you can use to decide if you want to live in the “Athens of the Midwest”!

The 8 Best Reasons to Move to Iowa City

There are many different reasons to move to Iowa City, IA! Below, we’ve got 8 of them to give you a taste of why folks love this charming city.

1. The Job Market in Iowa City is Strong

Team of people working at desk

From small startups to international conglomerates, there are thousands of employment opportunities in Iowa City. It’s a great place to plant and watch seeds grow if you’re an entrepreneur! Creativity and collaboration abound in this city, and the unemployment rate is a low 3.5%.

2. The Cost of Living is Genuinely Affordable

With a cost of living index of 87.2, it’s about 13% less expensive to live in Iowa City than comparable U.S. cities. Transportation costs are incredibly low at 68.5%, and utilities are about 8% less than the national average.

3. Spring and Summer are Gorgeous!

With a comfort index of 8.6/10, Iowa City is wonderful from late spring until the end of fall. Warm days and comfortable nights are the norm, with low humidity and lots of sunshine. Yes, winter can be frigid, but there’s a lot to do indoors to take your mind off the cold. (Brewery, anyone?)

4. Iowa City’s Public Schools are Highly Rated

With a grade of A- from Niche, the 31 public schools in Iowa City will give your kids an excellent start to their education!

5. The College Town Atmosphere is Charming and Laid-Back

Iowa City is the very definition of a college town with many historic and beautiful buildings. It’s also culturally diverse, thanks to the University of Iowa, with the Manville Heights neighborhood being a standout for its architecture and scenic streets.

6. Amazing Outdoor Adventure Opportunities

From Backbone State Park to the Sauk Rail Trail and Pikes Peak State Park, there’s no lack of unique places to enjoy the outdoors in Iowa City! The Rail Trail also connects two state parks, including Blackhawk State Park and Swan Lake State Park!

7. You’ll Find Very Low Commute Times

With an average commute of under 18 minutes (one way), getting around Iowa City is a breeze. It’s also a walkable city with plenty of bike lanes, making it easier to get around if you don’t have a car.

8. The Culinary Scene is Amazing!

Close up of a hamburger and french fries on a plate

Foodies from all over the U.S. flock to Iowa City for the culinary scene found here! Diverse and delicious, you’ll find something to tempt the taste buds of everyone in the family! Here is a short list of some popular restaurants in Iowa City:

  1. Pullman Bar & Diner – An American diner offering a twist on classic dishes using local and sustainable ingredients.
  2. Basta Pizzeria Ristorante – Known for its delicious Italian cuisine, particularly its variety of pizzas.
  3. Oasis Falafel – A favorite spot for Mediterranean and Middle Eastern dishes, famous for its falafel, hummus, and other classics.
  4. Hamburg Inn No. 2 – A classic diner famous for its breakfasts and pie shakes. It’s an iconic spot in Iowa City and has even hosted several U.S. presidents during their campaign stops.
  5. Formosa – A trendy spot that offers a variety of Asian dishes, particularly known for its sushi.
  6. The Bluebird Diner – A comfort food paradise, serving Midwest food in a retro environment.
  7. Devotay – Features Spanish and Mediterranean-inspired dishes, including a variety of tapas.
  8. Exotic India – As the name suggests, it’s an Indian restaurant offering a broad spectrum of flavorful dishes.
  9. A & A Pagliai’s Pizza – A long-standing spot in Iowa City, famous for its crispy and delicious pizzas.
  10. Thai Spice – A favorite for those craving Thai cuisine, known for its flavorful curries and noodle dishes.

How Is the Housing in Iowa City?

As of this writing, the Iowa City housing market, while still affordable, is experiencing a significant shift, much like the rest of the United States. The median home price increased by 3.6% between 2022 and 2023, while the number of homes sold dropped by about 22%.

Quick Essential Things to Know About Iowa City

Group of college students laughing

Below are some of the essential facts you need to know if you’re going to live and work in Iowa City!

  • Everything is covered in Hawkeye black and gold! (The Iowa Hawkeyes are Big Ten Conference members and compete in Division 1 of the NCAA.)
  • Iowa City is the world’s 3rd United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) City of Literature.
  • The city has 3 fantastic farmer’s markets!
  • University of Iowa Hospitals was named by the U.S. News & World Report as one of “America’s Best Hospitals.”
  • Iowa City is a wind power pioneer state.
  • The “Public Ivy League” resides in Iowa City and is one of the country’s diversity leaders.
  • The country’s first female mayor was in Iowa City. (Her name was Emma J. Harvat.)
  • The city’s median age is a low 24.8 years of age.
  • The downtown district has a 95/100 walkability score, which is phenomenal. (Thanks partly to the “Ped Mall” where cars aren’t allowed.)

Frequently Asked Questions about Iowa City, IA

Q: How is the job market in Iowa City?

A: As we saw earlier, the job market in Iowa City is very strong, and the city’s unemployment rate is substantially lower than the U.S. average.

Q: What are the storage options in Iowa City when moving?

A: Moove In Self Storage has 9 self-storage facilities in and around Iowa City to serve you.

Q: What are some tips for a smooth move to Iowa City?

A: Start planning 2 months ahead. Reserve a storage unit online before you arrive. Reserve a moving truck as early as possible. Get rid of everything you don’t need, want, or use before you move.

Let Moove In Self Storage Help You Make Your Move to Iowa City a Stress-Free Success

Whether you’ve lived here your entire life or just got here, when you need storage units in Iowa City, Moove In Self Storage is your best choice. Moove In offers world-class storage amenities and features, including month-to-month leases that keep you from getting stuck in a long-term rental contract. From convenient drive-up storage units to 24/7 video security, wide lanes, temperature-controlled storage, and much more, you can be sure your valuables will be safe and sound when stored with Moove In Self Storage! When you’re ready, you can reserve your storage units in Iowa City online. There’s no deposit needed and no credit card to reserve your Iowa City storage units, making it easy and convenient to reserve them before you get here!