city life vs suburbs

City vs. Suburb: Where Should You Move?

Have you always loved the energy and excitement of big city life and couldn’t imagine spending your Saturday night in a sleepy small town?

Do you prefer the ease and laid-back lifestyle of a suburb because the noise, hustle, and bustle of a metro area make your head spin?

You are on the fence, and with the prospect of hiring expert packers and movers looming, it is time to make a seemingly impossible decision.

Instead of spending time you could be packing and saying goodbye to friends and family, let us do the research for you! Here is the definitive guide to the ups and downs of living in a big city vs a small town or suburb:

small town suburbs vs big city

What Exactly Is the Difference Between the “City” and the “Suburbs?”

In a large city or metropolitan area, the lines between the “big city” and the “suburbs” can become blurred, so what exactly is the difference?

The city is the main metropolitan hub or center, while the suburbs are the smaller towns on the outskirts or boundaries of the larger city.

Suburbs, including Denver, surround most larger cities. For example, if you are moving to Denver, some of the city’s most popular suburbs include Holly Hills, Castle Pines, and Cherry Creek.

rush city lifestyle

Consider Your Lifestyle, Goals, and Expectations

Finding a new hometown poses a unique challenge, especially if you are unfamiliar with the area.

Should you live in one of the best 5 places to live in the U.S. or top 10 must-see cities, or call one of the periphery small towns or suburbs home? Here are a few factors to consider:

  • Your Budget: Want to take advantage of lower housing, utility, and miscellaneous costs? Are you renting or buying? Be aware that, in most cases, the cost of housing is higher in urban areas. For example, consider Denver’s average rent in 2024 for a better idea of the expected costs of an apartment in the metro area.
  • Your Family Goals: Living in a suburban setting makes sense for most parents who want to enjoy the safety and security of a smaller neighborhood.
  • Job Opportunities: In most cases, larger cities offer more job opportunities and higher salaries.
  • Your Five-Year Plan: Do you want to retire in a small town, start your career after college, or want to start a family? Consider where you are now and, of course, where you want to be in the future. If you are moving to college, check out this college moving ultimate checklist!

bay of boston city

Pros of Living the Big City Life: From Denver to Boston, San Francisco, and NYC!

A new town means a new lifestyle, especially if you are considering relocating to one of the biggest metropolitan areas of the country, including San Francisco, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, or Seattle. Whatever the case and wherever you call home, the team at Denver Moving Group can help.

Let us provide you with the answers to FAQs for long-distance movers in Denver and help with selecting Denver’s best long-distance movers (Here’s a hint: We are decidedly the best!)

Cultural and Entertainment Options

Living in a big city allows you to eat, drink, and be very merry at dozens or even hundreds of excellent restaurants, bars, nightclubs, theaters, and hot spots.

For example, after you read our Denver to Portland relocation guide, be sure to check out Jake’s Famous Crawfish or Urban Farmer Portland, two of the best eateries in the city!

Are you considering moving from Denver to Seattle for the world-class coffee, food truck scene, and overall eclectic urban environment?

Ask any locals, and they will tell you the first place to check out would be the Pike Place Market.

When you’re done perusing this massive outdoor market, take a break and have lunch at Elliot’s Oyster House!

big public transportation options

Public Transport and New Friends Around Every Corner

As a tried-and-true Denverite, you have been enjoying the city’s stellar public transportation and aren’t willing to give up on the convenience and cost-savings of catching the bus or getting to work on a light rail.

Luckily, most big cities have well-planned public transportation infrastructures. However, some are better than others.

For example, be aware that if you are considering a Boston relocation from Denver, the public transport system, or “The T,” as it is called by the locals, is comprehensive but notoriously unreliable.

Other large cities, including New York City, San Francisco, and Philadelphia, have more dependable public transportation services.

Are you planning a journey from Denver to Tampa? Like other big cities, Tampa has plenty of ways to meet new people, connect with potential clients, and quickly become a member of your community. Unfortunately, this isn’t always true if you live in the suburbs.

Fast Paced Neighborhoods and Plenty of Jobs

There are more jobs in urban areas, meaning that if you are exploring a new industry or want a reliable job in your existing profession, it won’t be difficult, which cannot always be said if you live in a small town.

NYC’s job market, for example, is consistently on the rise. If NYC is on your radar, here is a simple Denver to New York City moving checklist!

If you are moving from Denver to Chicago, you won’t have trouble finding employment in this central metropolitan area, as well.

However, if you live in some of the smaller towns and suburbs of the city, Winnetka, Evanston, or Glenview, the jobs are not as plentiful, which is true of most small towns around the country.

The Downsides of Calling Any Metro Area Home

Unfortunately, big-city living isn’t the right choice for everyone, and there are cons to living in a major metro area.

Doing your homework before moving to any big city is critical, so in addition to reading this Washington State Moving Guide, here are a few things to keep in mind before packing and moving to a bigger city:

crime rate is higher in big cities

Higher Crime Rates

Unsurprisingly, it is universally true that small towns are safer. You can get to know your neighbors in a smaller town, and you will just feel like a more present, secure member of your community.

While considering all the factors of moving to any big city, including this Denver vs. Phoenix Moving Comparison, research the rates of both violent and property crimes.

Forget About Fresh Air and Space

Moving to a big city means living in an apartment for many, as the cost of purchasing a home in the country’s largest metropolitan areas, from Chicago to Houston, San Francisco, and New York City, just isn’t economically feasible.

Affordable housing is complex to come by, and how much space you can afford should be a consistent factor. Check out apartment listing websites and read how to Get a Quote for Moving to New Jersey!

Apartment Living Isn’t Always Glamorous

Let’s face it: Living in an apartment can be difficult under the best circumstances.

Before you decide on a new place, research the neighborhood and spend a few hours reading blogs or reviews for apartment buildings to ensure you find a safe, affordable, and well-kept place to live.

When you’re done, check out this Guide for Denver to Dallas Move!

living near the golden gate rush

Cost of Living and Lack of Outdoor Activities

Most people move to a big city for the excitement, job opportunities, and a certain amount of danger and intrigue!

No matter the reason you are moving, realize that in addition to having less access to open space, you will also pay a premium for all that excitement, hustle, and bustle.

For example, before completing your San Diego Moving Plan, consider the cost of living, which is nearly 55% higher than the rest of the country.

Salt Lake City is an excellent alternative because the living costs are much lower. If you decide to pack up and move to The Crossroads of the West, check out our Guide to Moving from Denver to Salt Lake City!

Is the City of Angels on your radar? Check out this: Relocating to Los Angeles: A Guide!

small town benefits

The Benefits of Small-Town Life

Many Americans dream of living somewhere they can raise a family, play with their dog in the backyard, and spend their weekends grilling with the neighbors.

If this is your dream, and you are considering working with the fantastic team at Denver Moving Group, read these Long-Distance Moving Client Testimonials and consider some of the pros of small-town living:

pace of a small town

Slower Pace, Laid Back Lifestyle, and Safer Educational Opportunities

Life in a small town is simpler, laid back, and calm. Your kids can happily walk to school, and you can feel safe, allowing them to walk to their best friend’s house for a sleepover.

If you are Moving to Maryland from Colorado, some of the safest small towns in the state include Ocean Pines, Hampstead, and Centreville!

Save Money on Everyday Expenses: And You Can Even Afford to Buy a House!

In this turbulent economic client, people tend to shy away from purchasing a new home. In many major metropolitan areas, including New York City and San Francisco, the median home cost is well over $1 million!

The first step to home ownership is living in a small town with much lower housing costs. Want to learn more about the San Francisco area? Read these Bay Area Moving Insights.

free and wild outdoor activity

Access to the Great Outdoors!

Sure, seeing the latest and great art, watching a play, or eating at a five-star restaurant is excellent, but sometimes, you must get back to basics and spend time outdoors!

Smaller towns have easier access to green spaces and well-kept parks; nothing compares to a small-town community fair!

Whether you decide to live in a small town or a big city, here are the Best Cities for Outdoor Lovers!

Aren’t ready to give up the Rocky Mountains, beautiful sky, and skiing in Colorado? Check out this Colorado Springs vs. Durango: Where to Move!

Reasons Why Suburban Life Isn’t All It’s Cracked Up to Be

Living in the suburbs is ideal for many, but unfortunately, there are downsides to living in smaller communities.

Before you pack up your stuff and choose which day of the week to schedule the moving truck, consider these downsides to living in a smaller town or suburb:

old school bus transportation

Longer Commutes to School and Work

Unfortunately, many suburban areas and smaller towns have an underperforming public transportation system or no system at all.

This means more time in traffic on the way to work or your kids relying on you to get them to soccer practice.

For many, this is a deal breaker and why Settling in Sacramento or another major city with a robust transportation system is necessary.

Expect to Depend on Your Car

From the cost of rent to groceries and entertainment, living in a big city across the board is typically more expensive.

However, this doesn’t include the cost of maintaining a vehicle if you opt for public transportation instead. Factor in the price of gas, repairs, and upkeep into your budget.

Denver, of course, has a great public transportation system, which is only one benefit of calling the Mile High City home. If you are considering moving to Denver, check out our High Altitude Living Tips in Denver!

working man in suburbss

Lack of Big City Networking Opportunities

Traditional workplaces are becoming obsolete; many rely on alternative environments, including virtual and coworking offices.

Coworking and Networking in Denver and other metro areas is the future, and unfortunately, small towns and suburban settings are falling behind.

Small-Town Living and the Lack of Diversity

Diversity is the hallmark of urban areas, and living in a big city allows you to meet new people and introduce your kids to various unique cultures.

Most suburbs or small towns simply aren’t as diverse. Whether you are moving to a metro area or one of these suburbs, Avoid These Worst Places in the USA!

moving out of the big city to a small town

Moving to a Smaller Town or Big City? Let Our Expert Team Plan Your Next Move

Congratulations! You’ve decided to take the plunge and move to a new city. Whether you choose a big city or a small town, let the fantastic team at Denver Moving Group help.

Whether you need assistance in Choosing Between Moving Brokers and Companies or want some easy-to-follow Summer Moving Strategies, we have your back, no matter what the question or situation!

Let us help you plan every aspect of your relocation from start to finish. You can rest assured that with our help and some Ultimate Moving Tips, your move from Denver to anywhere in the country will be as stress-free as possible!

make your relocation plans early

All The Services You Need to Plan a Stress-Free Relocation

From packing to storage and beyond, we are the best Cross-Country Movers in Denver who also offer all the services you require to plan your next move.

Don’t you have time to pack and protect your most precious belongings expertly? Let our team pack all your stuff and safely get it to your new house!

If you are planning a local move, we can help! We are proud of our work, and our customers are pleased to share their stories. Check out these Local Moving: Customer Experiences!

Contact Us Today for a Free Quote

In addition to these helpful Long-Distance Move Packing Tips, we offer you a free quote on all our services. We pride ourselves on our professionalism and transparency. When you work with our team, you will never be confronted with unexpected fees or unwanted charges.

big city or small town suburbs

FAQs From Our Customers

Is it better to live in a city or the suburbs?

It really depends on your lifestyle, goals, and priorities. Big-city living is a better option if you are focused on your career and friendships. Want to raise a family or retire? Consider a small town. Do your homework and read the comparisons above.

While at it, read this guide: Longmont vs. Lakewood, CO: A Comparison. If you want to stay in Colorado, check out Discovering Estes Park, CO, for even more information!

What is one downside of living in the suburbs?

Homeowners in the suburbs love to brag about their lush, green backyard, but what about the upkeep? Owning a home and a yard can be expensive. For example, did you know the average company charges between $30 to $70/hour to mow a lawn?

No matter where you move, keep this cost in mind. Considering The Lone Star State? Learn more about Why Moving to Texas is Trending!

moving in or out the big city

How do you cope with moving to a big city?

Relocating from a small town to a bigger city can be overwhelming. The best way to cope is to do your homework and get to know your neighborhood. For example, check out these Denver, Austin, Raleigh City Comparisons if you are moving from a small town to one of these metropolitan areas.

Still haven’t decided where to move, but know that big city living is right for you? Consider these Fastest Growing U.S. Cities in 2024!

How do you adapt to a small town?

If you’ve always lived in a big city, the slower pace of a small town can seem downright boring.

Making friends or volunteering in your community are two great ways to adapt to your new environment.

Of course, the first step is to hire the right movers. But what happens if they cancel? Check out this: What to Do When a Long-Distance Mover Cancels!

If this is your first experience moving across the country to a big city or small town, learn about the experiences of others and check out Personal Stories of Cross-Country Moves!

Picture of John Brikertalli

John Brikertalli

John is a mover since he can't remember when. As a son to a family of movers, John has experience in all moving aspects. Contact us and ask John about your next move.

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