DIGGS Live- Move To Tacoma

You would love to sell your Glendale Ca home…

but where would you go? We are super excited to welcome Anne “Tacoma” Jones to the DIGGS Live show! Many Glendale homeowners dream of the Pacific NW lifestyle, but we think Seattle is too crowded and expensive. I visited Tacoma last year and I was so impressed! It seems like they have all the fun at a fraction of the cost of living. Anne is one of the bomb diggity agents that I’ve come to love in Tacoma.

Show Notes

Anne Jones has been an agent for 10 years and grew up in the area. Her dad is a semi-retired home builder. She has some experience in the construction side of the business.

Most of the homes are built from the 1920’2 to the 1950’s. Some of the “suburbs” like Gig Harbor are homes built in the 1970’s and 1980’s. These areas are 15 – 30 minutes away from the urban areas of Tacoma.

Why do people love living in Tacoma?

We are surrounded on three sides by water and we get to see the incredible Mt Ranier (when it’s out) we have great access to the outdoors, and access to the water. We have a mellow life and the work-life balance is pretty good.

Is Tacoma commutable to Seattle?

There those who do it! For some it isn’t a choice- it is where they can afford to live.  The community might be 90 min up and three hours back.  If there is light traffic it can only take 45 minutes.

What does a middle-class home in Tacoma look like and what does it cost?

That is going to be about $400,000 and that is a dramatic change for us. Not long ago a reasonable starter would be more like $200,000. But the Seattle transplants are driving the prices up. You can still get a 3 bedroom 1 bath home for around $250,000- but those homes will likely need upgrades to the wiring or heating systems, sewer lines or replacing the single paned windows.

Are there homebuyer assistance programs in Tacoma?

We use FHA and down payment assistance grants. (check out our post on home buyer tools for down payment grant information.) These are still viable loan programs, but it is a challenge. We also have a fairly competitive market, as well.

What are the people like in Tacoma?

The University is an amazing anchor for our downtown.  This, combined with our affordability attracts a lot of young people and a lot of creatives. The people who buy are attracted to the open-mindedness- we are fairly liberal. It is easy to move here, set down roots and get involved and make connections fairly easily. Some people feel that the natives are not so friendly just “on the street” because most natives don’t use an umbrella, they have a hood pulled over their faces.

REI ads are a great reflection of the culture in Tacoma.

What do people like to do in Tacoma?

We only get a couple days of snow in any given year. Puget Sound is very cold, but there is lots of water sports. We also have an amazing park system. Point Defiance is similar to Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. People love that you are not far from anything, water, skiing, hiking- it is all less than an hour away.

There are a lot of telecommuters- office space is very affordable as well as many co-working spaces.

So- what is the truth about the weather in Tacoma?!

We can get down to freezing- by February most people are just DONE.  But spring happens and the by-product of all that rain is beautiful, gorgeous green. People cope by taking weekend trips or just cuddle up by fires, read books.

It is cold and cloudy November – February, but the summer months are simply glorious. Our weather is mild, it is rarely too hot to eat outdoors

What is your hot tip for neighborhoods in Tacoma?

There are two neighborhoods designated for significant growth.  The first is along Sixth Ave where they will replace granny homes into multi-story buildings offering a walkable lifestyle to restaurants, entertainment, and shopping. There another district called Lincoln District has a similar development and growth plan. It is close to the historic Lincoln High School, the best Asian grocery and the best Vietnamese restaurant.

How about the cost of living in Tacoma?

Property taxes are lower than our surrounding communities as we have already invested in our parks and schools. Milk is about three bucks and a gallon of gas is over three dollars.

Want to find out more?

You can find Anne Jones at TacomaJones.com

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