Living in the Windy City is not for the faint of heart. There are many great things about Chicago, but some harsh realities need to be understood before you move. We teamed up with friends and coworkers to get some insider knowledge on living in Chicago, so we hope this post will come in handy. If you are living in Chicago, you might want to check out this quick guide.
Here are our tips and tricks on living in Chicago:
1. Evaluate what your reasons for moving to Chicago may be so that you can plan accordingly. Think about what you want to see, do, eat, and experience in the city. The best part about living in Chicago is also what sometimes makes it very challenging. Neighborhoods and areas are very different from each other. For example, people who are drawn to living downtown typically are looking for a particular lifestyle that does not include a lot of space or need for transportation. However, if people who move downtown don’t have a car, they quickly realize that walking to the grocery store is not an option without a long walk home with groceries in hand.
2. Plan your schedule and make sure you’re not going to work in the same area daily. For example, if you live in a more expensive area, like River North or Lincoln Park, it might be wise to try to get a car to drive to other sites in Chicago.
3. Talk with your landlord about any issues or concerns in your residence, especially if your lease has expired on your property.
4. Ask around the neighborhood for tips on finding a place to stay when visiting other neighborhoods in Chicago, like Logan Square or Wicker Park (for college students).
5. To get affordable housing, look for accommodation via Craigslist or Apartments Near Me.
6. Students can find student housing online through the university website and sites like Studio Apartments or Uloop
7. If you are happy with your neighborhood, consider buying a home instead of renting.
8. Look into volunteer opportunities in the city, such as working at an animal shelter or rescue organization.
9. Consider working remotely to explore other areas of the city and make sure that you’re aware of what is happening in different parts of the town for fun and educational activities (i.e., art, theater, etc.).
10. If you are moving to Chicago for work, make sure to reach out to your coworkers who have lived in Chicago for a while and ask them any questions you may have. For example, do they commute or see if they can recommend an excellent place to live or any fun places to check out?
11. If you are going to move somewhere in or around the city, make sure to factor transportation costs into your budget. Public transportation is the only way people get around when living in Chicago.
12. Don’t be afraid of making friends where you live with people who are very different from yourself.