Thinking of Moving to Bellingham? This is for YOU!

Hey there, Bellingham enthusiasts! Aldo here, and I'm excited to welcome you back to the Living in Bellingham YouTube channel. In today's blog, we're going to dive deep into the heart of Bellingham, Washington, based on the video script from one of our recent episodes. So, if you missed out or prefer to read, you're in for a treat!


Getting to Know Bellingham

Bellingham is nestled in the stunning landscapes of Whatcom County, and it's a place I've called home since I was seven years old. Over the years, I've watched this city grow and evolve, making it a fantastic place to live and explore. With a population of around 90,000 people, Bellingham maintains a perfect blend of a bustling community and a cozy, small-town feel.


Navigating Bellingham's Geography

To truly understand Bellingham, it helps to grasp its geography. The city is surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty, with Lake Whatcom being the largest of three picturesque lakes. Lake Whatcom stretches an impressive 14 miles and offers not only stunning views but also various housing options.


Coming from the south, you'll encounter Lake Samish, a man-made lake perfect for boating and waterfront living. And, don't forget Lake Padden, a serene lake ideal for paddle boating and outdoor enthusiasts. Bellingham's close proximity to the Canadian border makes it incredibly convenient for those interested in international travel.


Exploring Bellingham's Traffic

One aspect to consider when moving to Bellingham is its traffic. While we may not have the colossal highways you find in major cities, our main artery is I-5, connecting us to the northern border and beyond. Traffic is typically manageable, with some congestion around the Sunset exit during peak hours.


Compared to larger cities, Bellingham's traffic may seem like a breeze. Even a 10-minute delay during rush hour can feel like an eternity to us locals.


Bellingham's Neighborhoods

Now, let's talk neighborhoods. Bellingham boasts a diverse range of neighborhoods, each with its own unique character. While I can't claim one to be definitively better than the others, I can offer some insights.

  • Barkley Neighborhood: Here, you'll find a well-rounded community with everything you need, from a movie theater to grocery stores and restaurants.
  • Silver Beach: Known for its lakefront properties, Silver Beach is an upscale area with an average home price around $950,000.
  • South Hill: This neighborhood offers stunning views as it sits atop a hill, overlooking the city and water.
  • Fairhaven: Perhaps the most famous of Bellingham's neighborhoods, Fairhaven is rich in history, boasting numerous condos, walkability, and vibrant nightlife.


The Most Expensive Areas

If you're looking for luxury, Bellingham has you covered. Edgemoor tops the list as the most exclusive and priciest neighborhood, with stunning homes and beautiful views. Properties here can range from $2.6 million to $4 million, but the property taxes are surprisingly reasonable.


Affordable Areas in Bellingham

On the flip side, let's talk affordability. Sudden Valley offers some budget-friendly housing options, with homes typically around $450,000. Cordata is another area where you can find newer construction homes at a more reasonable cost.


Bellingham's School System

For families, schools are a significant consideration. Bellingham's public school system is decent, with various elementary, middle, and high schools. Each has its unique strengths and is generally rated positively. The choice often depends on your specific needs and preferences.


Amenities and Restaurants

Bellingham has a lot to offer in terms of amenities. We've got fantastic parks like Cordata Park and Squalicum Creek Park, perfect for outdoor family fun. Boulevard Park, right on the water, offers a picturesque setting for a relaxing stroll or a family picnic.


Now, let's talk food. Bellingham has a solid restaurant scene, though some may argue we're a bit lacking in culinary diversity. Some notable spots include the Oyster Bar on Chuckanut Drive, Aslan Brewing, and Deanna's Café Italian for some delightful Italian cuisine. For the best breakfast in town, don't miss the Birch Door Café, a local favorite.


Cost of Living in Bellingham

It's essential to understand that Bellingham's cost of living can be on the higher side. With an average home price of nearly $700,000, housing costs can be a challenge for some. Groceries and dining out can also be more expensive compared to other areas. Gas prices, for some reason, tend to be on the higher side as well.


Closing Thoughts

And that's a wrap! I hope you enjoyed this comprehensive guide to Bellingham, Washington. Whether you're considering a move to this beautiful city or just curious about what it has to offer, I hope you found this information helpful.

Remember, Bellingham may have its quirks and challenges, but its natural beauty, vibrant community, and unique neighborhoods make it an incredible place to call home.

If you have any questions or need further information, feel free to leave a comment or reach out to us. Thanks for tuning in, and we'll catch you in the next blog post or video!

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