Residing in the midwestern region of the United States, Missouri is named after the Missouri River that flows along the eastern border of the state. You will be astounded by the state’s natural beauty with its 7,300 caves of which many are located in Perry County. So it won’t come to you as a surprise that many people call it the ‘Cave State’. The Ozark Mountains and St. Francois Mountains will blow your mind with their beautifully formed sinkholes and caves as a result of the high limestone content there.
Whether it’s the mouth-watering Kansas City-style barbecue, a tour at the Lake of the Ozarks, or the most talked-about Missouri wine, this Show Me State has a lot to offer you. So keep reading to know about all the different amenities of the state.
What Should I Know Before Moving To Missouri?
With as many as 6,160,281 people residing here, Missouri is the 19th most populated state in the US and 23rd in terms of its area. The state is bordered by the states of Lowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Nebraska. One of the most popular tourist destinations of the state is the Ozarks. You will find it towards the southern part of the state where you’ll witness a forested highland that is rich in timber and minerals. You can have a nice quiet time for your recreation in these highlands.
The state boasts its various freshwater tributaries like the Mississippi River, Missouri River, Table Rock Lake, Lake of the Ozarks, etc. The sight of the beautiful rolling hills at the Great Plains towards the north of the Missouri River is simply breathtaking. Just go towards the south of the Missouri River and you’ll greet the beautiful hardwood forest of the central US. But if you want a taste of the city lifestyle, then you should know that Missouri has several metropolitan areas that you can explore both for employment and educational purposes.
Crime Rate In Missouri
It’s natural to get carried away by the state’s beauty and to feel like moving there right away. But we want to remind you that you also need to look at other important aspects of Missouri, like for example, your safety in the state.
Although the state seems welcoming when you think about exploring its delights, the crime rate in Missouri is something to consider before moving there. The state has had the 8th highest violent crime rate and 12th highest property crime rate in the state according to SafeWise. The study conducted by NeighborhoodScout states that the crime rate for violent crimes in Missouri is 4.95 per 1000 people. That means your chance of becoming a victim of violent crimes (murder, rape, robbery, and assault) is 1 in 202 people. Being higher than the US median of 4 per 1,000 people, it paints a rather grim picture.
On the other hand, the crime rate for property crimes in the state is 26.39 per 1,000 people as stated by NeighborhoodScout. So your chance of becoming a victim of property crimes (burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft) is 1 in 38 people. As you can see, the property crime in Missouri is higher compared to the national median of 21 per 1,000 people.
Some of the safest cities you can consider in the state are Clever, Vandalia, Savannah, Oronogo, Glendale, etc.
Missouri is known to have a humid continental climate. So if you plan on residing here, you’ll get to experience mildly cold and sometimes extremely cold winters while the summers here can be hot, humid, and sometimes wet. Because of the state’s location and lack of high mountains that can moderate the temperature, the cold Arctic and the humid Gulf of Mexico affect the weather to a great extent.
In the months from June to September, you’ll get to experience really hot summers. The state’s average temperature in summers sometimes reaches up to almost 100°F. But if you go towards the northwestern part of the state, you’ll experience slightly mild summers.
During winters, especially in the month of January, the temperature drops down to as much as -30°F. But if you go towards the Ozarks in winters, you’ll be practically freezing! Also, the state experiences unusual and heavy snowfall during winters, especially in the months of December and February.
Speaking of the state’s annual precipitation, the state experiences as much as 890mm towards the northeastern region. But if you go towards the southeastern part of the state, the precipitation is as much as 1,270mm.
The fall season (September to November) is when Missouri is at its most beautiful, with mild temperatures and clearer skies for most days.
Just so you know, the state falls into the ‘Tornado Alley’ of the United States. That means you’ll have to deal with dangerous tornadoes in the state if you’re planning to settle here.
Is It Expensive To Live In Missouri?
This is something you need to look at before you get carried away by Missouri’s beauty and plan your move. There will be so many things you’ll need to take care of once you move into the state. Right from your housing expenses to your food, you need to check whether all these necessities fit your budget. Let us help you crunch those numbers before you make a move!
Cost Of Living In Missouri
The Midwestern and Southern states are known for being relatively inexpensive, and Missouri is no exception. In fact, it is among the most affordable states in the US!
We know you’d want to avoid the topic of taxes altogether. After all, who loves it? But to give you something to cheer about, Missouri is relatively tax-friendly! This is because of the state legislature’s decision to cut down on income tax rates from 6% to 5.4%. When it comes to sales taxes, you’ll be paying 4.225%, and adding up the local rates, it can go to a maximum of 6.125%.
When it comes to food, it’s no exception either. If you’re living alone, you’ll have to keep aside around $3,001 and with a family of four, $8,666 to keep everyone well-fed. As these numbers are lower than the national average, that’s another point for the Show Me State!
But on the downside, healthcare is on the pricier side in Missouri. A single person would spend about $4,576 a year on healthcare while a family of four would be set back by about $13,879. These expenses are slightly higher than the US averages of $4,266 and $12,950 respectively.
Buying A House
Home value in Missouri has increased by over 11.6% since 2020, according to Zillow. Even with this trend, buying a home would still be quite feasible as the median home value in the Show Me State is $188,302, which is less than the US average of $281,370.
Renting A House
There’s always the option of renting a house in case you can’t afford to buy one. Let’s look at the house rent estimates given by 24/7 Wall St. The average rent for a house in Missouri is around $809 per month which is less than the US national average of around $1,023.
If at all you’re a single person looking for a one-bedroom house in the state, then your rent would be around $643 per month. But if you want to live with your family in a five-bedroom house, then you’ll have to pay as much as $1,126 per month in house rent. Of course, the price varies depending on the size, location, and the number of bedrooms in the house.
Utility bills in Missouri are also on the more affordable side. You can expect to spend about $407 per month on electricity, natural gas, water supply, cable, and Internet.
Transportation costs will also influence your overall cost of living to a large extent. If you’re a person who travels a lot or if you need to travel to work every day, you’ll have to pay around $1.92 for a gallon of gas. So your average expenditure on gas itself will be as much as $988 per year as stated by 24/7 Wall St.
Also See: State Wise Cost of Utility
Missouri Economy And Employment Opportunities
Missouri is known to have a very diverse economy with several industries operating in the state like agriculture, aerospace, manufacturing, electrical equipment, tourism, financial services, etc. The state’s agricultural production includes dairy products, beef, cotton, rice, and soybeans.
Speaking of the state’s other prominent industries, Emerson Electric, Wells Fargo Advisors, Centene Corporation, etc. operate in various metropolitan areas of the state. Because of the popular spots like the Gateway Arch National Park and the Ozark National Scenic Riverways, the state’s economy also benefits from the tourism sector.
To give you an insight into the job scene in Missouri, we’re pleased to tell you that the state’s economy is growing and the unemployment rate here, at 4.1%, is lower than the national average. That’s not to say that you’ll earn big bucks when in Missouri, as an individual earns an average of $30,810 a year here. But when you combine that with the low cost of living, it’s not a bad trade-off.
Zippia has given certain salary estimates for people who are seeking employment opportunities in Missouri. Anaesthesiologists and psychiatrists can earn a salary of around $263,990 and $241,670 respectively. If at all you’re a dentist, you can expect a salary of around $169,360. People who are working as chief executives can earn a salary of up to $172,430.
Considering aerospace and chemicals are major industries here, working as airline pilots, copilots, and flight engineers can bag you an average salary of $106,120. Chemical engineers and computer hardware engineers can earn as much as $104,890 and $102,340 respectively. As you see, there’s scope for you to explore the state for employment opportunities in different sectors and earn enough to pay all your living expenses.
If you’re seeking educational opportunities in the state, Missouri has plenty of public and private colleges and universities for you to choose from. Some of the most prominent and largest universities in the state are the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, Lincoln University, etc.
Speaking of the famous private institutions in the state, Washington University in St. Louis has earned a reputation of being one of the top-ranked institutions in the US. You can also explore the state’s other universities that offer several associate degrees, technical education, art, and design courses especially in the metropolitan areas of the city.
Getting Around Missouri
While a good part of Missouri is rural areas, the state does have systems in place for both rural and urban public transportation. Composed of highway-based and light rail programs, public transportation in Missouri is managed by the Missouri Public Transit Association (MPTA).
Whether you’re going sightseeing or commuting to work, you can choose the below modes of transportation:
Buses: Missouri has as many as 33 cities with bus services. The average cost for a bus ticket for the topmost routes is around $84. The cheapest ticket available for you would be around $19 whereas the most expensive bus ticket will cost you around $173. There are three major bus companies that can take you to and from Missouri to other locations.
The Jefferson Lines will take you to 16 cities within the state and has services from as many as 133 locations to Missouri from outside the state. You can also choose to travel by the Greyhound which will take you to 2 cities within the state and from 24 locations outside Missouri.
Taxis: The minimum taxi fare that you would have to pay in the state would be around $7.5 where you’ll be charged around $1.28 per km. There’s also the option of booking an Uber if you want to travel around in the state.
Trains: Missouri has as many as 13 cities with train services. The average train ticket for the top routes will cost you around $87. The cheapest ticket available for you would be around $11 whereas the most expensive train ticket will cost you about $213. There’s also the Burlington Railways which will take you to around 4 cities within the state and from 31 cities outside the state to Missouri.
The Amtrak will take you around 6 cities within the state and from 301 other cities to Missouri. There’s also the Amtrak Missouri River Runner that will take you to 10 cities within the state but it does not provide services from outside the state. The Amtrak Texas Eagle will take you to 3 cities within the state and from 31 other locations to Missouri. You can also choose to travel from Amtrak Southwest Chief that will take you to 2 cities within the state and can connect you to Missouri from 29 locations outside the state.
Also Read: Missouri DMV Change Of Address
Best Cities To Live In Missouri
1. St. Louis
Residing along the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers, St. Louis is one of the largest cities in Missouri with a population of as many as 319,294 people. Be it education, economy, or tourist spots, St. Louis has it all which makes it a perfect place to settle in. If you want to explore the state’s natural wonders and plants, you should definitely pay a visit to the country’s second-largest herbarium located in the city called Missouri Botanical Garden.
For those seeking educational opportunities, the most prestigious St. Louis University and the Washington University Medical Center are located in the city. Speaking of the prominent businesses operating in the city, Ameren Corporation, Peabody Energy, Nestle, Wells Fargo Advisors, etc. have their headquarters here. So this city is the perfect place for those wanting to live in a metropolitan area with plenty of educational and employment opportunities.
- Median Home Value: $115,700
- Median Home Rent: $924
- Unemployment Rate: 6.3%
Also See: 5 Best Moving Companies In St. Louis
2. Kansas City
With a population of as many as 486,404 people, Kansas City is one of the largest metropolitan cities in Missouri. There’s nothing that can beat the Kansas City-Style barbecue, wine, and the Kansas jazz that the city is known for. The city boasts its largest employer which is the federal government having as many as 146 agencies in the city.
You’ll never get bored in this city as the various amenities like the attractive neighborhoods in the Country Club Plaza and 18th and Vine Jazz District will keep you entertained. So if you’re looking for a lavish and busy city lifestyle with amazing food, music and entertainment, this is the city for you.
- Median Home Value: $146,300
- Median Home Rent: $944
- Unemployment Rate: 5.3%
See Also: Moving To Kansas City
Residing in Boone County, Columbia is one of the fastest-growing cities in Missouri with a population of over 108,500. For those of you who want to live in a place that’s full of educational opportunities, Columbia is the right place for you. It’s often referred to as the learning center of Missouri as it’s home to several renowned educational institutions like the University of Missouri and the Columbia College. If you’re keen on exploring employment opportunities here, then you’ll be glad to know that the city has a diverse economy with several healthcare, insurance, and technology businesses operating here.
The city has much more to offer than just learning centers. The caves, springs, and creeks of the city will leave you spellbound, especially if you visit the Rock Bridge Memorial State Park and Mark Twain National Forest. So if you want a city that has sightseeing along with good education and employment opportunities, Columbia is definitely the place to go to.
- Median Home Value: $182,500
- Median Home Rent: $800
- Unemployment Rate: 3.0%
Is Missouri A Good Place To Live In?
Missouri is definitely a wonderful place to live in for those wanting to move for educational and employment purposes. Even those of you who want to start a family here will enjoy the state’s amenities. The rural, small-town feel might not be for everyone, but the overall low cost of living and the ample outdoor opportunities at your disposal here could be enough for you to seal the deal for making the move!
Also See: Top-rated Out of State Moving Companies