Best Suburbs to move to in Phoenix, Arizona
If you’re thinking of moving to Phoenix, but living in the fifth largest city in America has you a little bit trepid, let’s talk about the suburbs in Phoenix. Yes; downtown is bustling, Old Town Scottsdale is a nightlife playground, and Tempe is full of all the college bars you could want (or need), but for the family looking to make Phoenix their new home, the Phoenix suburbs bring more to the table than you might have imagined.
Since the mid twentieth century, the American Dream has been to load the family up in the car and move to the suburbs. There you’ll find spacious yards, friendly neighbors, quiet streets, and even a picket fence if you REALLY want to go that far. (Hopefully after the crisp, clean 60’s capitulated into bell bottom pants and unisex long hair, most of those picket fences went with them.) But fence or not, the suburbs still represent the dreams of Americans: safety, access to good schools, work, and healthcare, and above all else family values. The values and nuclear homes might have changed over the years, but they will always be family centric. If moving to Phoenix is the next step for your family, let’s look at the top suburbs to move to in Phoenix, Arizona.
Starting in one of the most expensive neighborhoods in the Phoenix area, Paradise Valley lives up to her name. Located north of Phoenix, Paradise Valley is nestled on the outskirts of some of the most stunning views of the American southwest. Desert valleys and mountains and buttes all frame the view in this striking location, so it’s no surprise that you’ll find a plethora of golf courses here. Paradise Valley is known for its array of activities and infrastructure. There are plenty of beautiful shopping centers, dining options galore, museums, and art galleries to feed your creative side.
Due to its expensive nature, Paradise Valley is also one of the safest places in Phoenix, and the crime rates here are extremely low. Residents can take in nature by enjoying a hike at the nearby iconic Camelback Mountain, or take a more leisurely stroll through the cactus gardens in Barry Goldwater Memorial Park. As with all of the suburbs on our list, the schools in Paradise Valley are highly rated, and you can find plenty of options to best suit the needs of you and your family.
With the fastest population growth in all of the valley, it’s clear that Gilbert is one of the best suburbs in the Phoenix area and it’s still on the rise! Safe streets, affordable housing, and excellent schools make Gilbert extremely attractive, but knowing the best is yet to come brings more residents yearly.
This area is very family-centric, and you’ll find plenty of bike friendly streets and paved walkways to boost the area’s walkability. The downtown area of Gilbert is growing rapidly, and there seems to constantly be a new restaurant to try, whether you’re looking for local southwestern eats, a craft beer, or a cappuccino to enjoy on the patio. As this downtown area grows, designers are keen to assure it remains walkable and family friendly.
Speaking of walkable, Gilbert has an outstanding farmers market which is open year round, every Saturday. One can find everything from food truck favorites, to take home goodies such as produce and locally sourced goods. One of the most alluring aspects of Gilbert is its proximity to Phoenix proper. It’s only about twenty miles from Phoenix, making it a great option for those who have to commute into the city, but want the suburban lifestyle.
Learn More: What is the cost of living in Gilbert, Arizona?
While most of this list is extremely family oriented, we want to make sure we don’t exclude those suburbanites that still want a little nightlife action! Scottsdale is still an excellent place to raise a family, but it’s definitely known for having a bit of a “younger vibe.” Young professionals and those just out of college flock to Scottsdale for its well known Old Town area. In Old Town Scottsdale you’ll find local eateries of every kind, and a bustling bar scene. On an afternoon on a Saturday or Sunday, you’ll find the patios packed with patrons enjoying brunch or game watching at one of the sports bars.
Because it’s almost still considered Phoenix, this is another great option for those who commute into the city. But Scottsdale isn’t all restaurants and bars. It has a well known art culture, and you can tour most of these local art studios. If they want to get out in nature, residents can also hit the trail at the well known McDowell Sonoran Preserve for some nearby hiking. Because Scottsdale is one of the most established areas in Phoenix, the age of the homes here range from the 1920’s all the way to extremely modern and contemporary homes. This gives the area a lot of character and homeowners plenty of options when it comes to finding their perfect home.
Learn More: Pros & Cons of Living in Scottsdale, Arizona
In keeping with the young blood vibe, Tempe is another great location for the young professional. Tempe is perhaps most well known for being home to Arizona State University, go Sun Devils! The area surrounding the university is full of fun and cozy dining spots cultivated with the young patron in mind. Most places have patios where those dining can enjoy the lovely Arizona weather, and dogs are always welcome here! (Because let’s face it, for the young family without children, dogs ARE the children!).
The beautiful Tempe Center for the Arts hosts performances all year. Here you can catch concerts, dance, comedy shows, traveling theatre and more. If you want to spend your Saturday out and about in nature, Tempe Town Lake offers residents an aquatic adventure with rentable kayaks and paddleboards. As another extremely established area in Phoenix, Tempe is very historic. Take a walk down Mill Avenue, Tempe’s main street; and experience the west when it was wild. This historic area does an excellent job of preserving its history (with many buildings dating back to the 1800’s!) and letting in just enough new shops and restaurants to keep it hip!
Once again, because of how long people have inhabited the Tempe area, you can find a huge selection of homes in every shape and size (and budget.)
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Just to the east of Tempe, you’ll find the largest suburb on our list, Mesa. More than 500,000 people call Mesa home, making it one of the biggest suburbs in the country. Mesa is the perfect fit for those moving to the Phoenix area who want everything at their fingertips. Mesa is truly its own town, with plenty of shopping malls, grocery stores, hospitals, schools, entertainment and more. You don’t ever really even need to leave Mesa to head into Phoenix unless you want to.
Perhaps the most attractive part of Mesa is the affordable housing. With a median home price of about $168,000, it’s a quick choice for many families. Not only is it much more affordable than many other suburbs in the valley, but it has excellent schools, and the largest school district in Arizona. Even with its lower housing cost, the crime rate remains very low here, keeping it family friendly. Kids (and parents) can feel safe utilizing Mesa’s great public transportation options.
Countless hiking trails and outdoor recreation options dot the Mesa area, making it an excellent place to not only buy a less expensive home, but find plenty of free things to do with the whole family.
Ending our list of best suburbs to move to in Phoenix, we have a small suburb that gives residents a true desert dwelling experience. The suburb of Goodyear has less than 100,000 residents. This “Mayberry” of the valley offers a slower lifestyle, well removed from the hustle and bustle of Phoenix. With extremely low crime rates, this area is very family friendly, and many move from Phoenix proper to Goodyear when they are ready to start a family.
Homes in Goodyear are slightly pricier, and many of them are new construction, leaving fewer options for older, less expensive homes. But just because it’s small doesn’t mean it’s sleepy! There’s plenty to do in Goodyear. The famed Goodyear Ballpark is host to Major League Baseball spring training. Residents can catch a game and watch the pros play ball before anyone else gets to! The massive Estrella Mountain Regional Park spans over 20,000 acres of gorgeous desert, showcasing mountains, and even desert wetland ecosystems. Because of its quiet nature and proximity to great golf courses, Goodyear is not only a great place to raise a family, but an excellent place to retire.
Thinking of Moving to the Phoenix Suburbs?
These are just a few of the spectacular suburbs in the Phoenix area. There are SO many good places to live in Phoenix; it’s just about deciding what is right for you and your family. If any of these fantastic suburbs seem to be the perfect place to call home, reach out to me! I would love to help you find your dream home in the Phoenix suburbs today!
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