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Fort Wayne, Indiana

Fort Wayne, Indiana

Affordable and Full of Opportunity: Fort Wayne for College Grads, Young Families

by Julia Alvarez

If anything good has come out of the economic downturn that started about five years ago, it's the efforts that cities and states are making to create new jobs and keep housing affordable. Fort Wayne, Ind., for example has seen an uptick in jobs by 3.53 percent, according to Sperling's Best Places, which compiles data from the U.S. Census Bureau among other organizations that monitor economic indicators. The cost of living is 14.2 percent lower than the U.S. average.

Housing

With the average cost of housing in the U.S. at more than $180,000, Ft. Wayne's homes are considerably more affordable. Fort Wayne apartments for rent and houses for sale average significantly less than the national average with owner-occupied units averaging $100,800, according to Census.gov's QuickFacts.

Job Growth

According to Wane.com, the Fiscal Times named Fort Wayne the best city to find a job because of a strong manufacturing sector and a growing business sector resulting in a steady rise in job opportunities for college graduates. Part of picking the right place to use as a launch pad for your career is focusing on opportunities that give you room to grow as your real-world skills develop.

Big Little City

Living in a gigantic metropolitan area is not without its pitfalls: crime, traffic, sub-par schools, just to name a few. Small towns can often lack the basics we all want: fun events, transportation infrastructure and shopping options, just to start. Fort Wayne gives you the small town feel with the big city amenities. Fun festivals from May through November, exciting nightlife, cultural activities, a wonderful zoo and a modern science museum, Fort Wayne has a lot of the things most folks expect from a city four times its size.

Low Cost of Living

An often overlooked factor in the quality of life in a city is the cost of living. Making $80,000 a year actually translates to a lot less if you’re living in a city where rent is high, taxes are outrageous and the cost of food is lofty. Fort Wayne's cost of living is lower than the national average, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That translates to, in a 40-hour work week, getting paid for an extra 5.7 hours because you’re not spending money on the necessities you need to live. Fort Wayne is a great place to get a low cost of living and a high quality of life.

Location, Location, Location

Nestled in the heart of the Midwest, Fort Wayne is close to metropolitan areas such as Chicago, Cincinnati and Indianapolis while being near the great outdoors. In Fort Wayne, you’re not in the middle of the hullabaloo of major cities, but not so far removed you feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere. From Minnesota to Michigan and over to Ohio, Fort Wayne acts as a great base of operations while exploring all the midwest has to offer.

After looking at what’s important to them and doing their due diligence, recent grads have been flocking to Fort Wayne for the job opportunities, mix of small town feel with big city amenities, low cost of living and convenient location.

Julia Alvarez A former grade school art teacher, Julia retired early to pursue a full-time career as an art critic, and now she's living the dream, traveling to different cities every week to write about the latest shows and art openings. She wouldn't changed her life now for all of the money in the world.

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