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6 Reasons to Move to Cedar Rapids, IA

Looking for a new place to call home? Here's why you should consider relocating to this Midwestern gem in Iowa.

By Kevin Litwin on January 24, 2023

iStock/DenisTangneyJr

Fast fact: Cedar Rapids is the largest corn-processing city in the world and one of the leading bioprocessing and food ingredient centers in North America. As impressive as that is, Cedar Rapids has many other impressive aspects that help make life happy around here. Here’s the inside scoop on why moving to Cedar Rapids may be right for you:

1. You Can Afford to Live Here

The city has a typical home price of $187,000 (Zillow, September 2022). Quality of life amenities include museums, two main theaters, 74 parks, four golf courses, six public swimming pools, two major hospitals and Eastern Iowa Airport. Other advantages are top-notch schools, a good transportation network and a pro-business government.

2. Enjoy a Thriving Downtown Scene

Cedar Rapids’ downtown district has undergone a bit of a makeover. Today, it boasts theaters, restaurants, a thriving nightlife, new housing options and a creative vibe that exudes throughout the region.

3. Earn a Quality Education in Cedar Rapids

The high school-or-greater education attainment for the Cedar Rapids-Iowa City population is 95% for ages 25 and older, compared to the national average of 88.2%. And when area high school seniors head to college, many are choosing to remain in the region because of the excellent higher education choices. Top colleges and universities in the extended metro area include Mount Mercy University, Coe College, Kirkwood Community College, Cornell College, and University of Iowa. The University of Northern Iowa and Iowa State University round out the three Board of Regents universities.

4. You’ll Be Surrounded by Career Opportunities

It’s rather easy to find an excellent job and career path in Cedar Rapids because the city has a robust economy in many sectors. Cedar Rapids is home to 24 Fortune 500 companies, including big names like Cargill, General Mills, Nordstrom, Quaker Oats and Whirlpool. About 300 advanced manufacturing plants have operations in Cedar Rapids, and the insurance and finance industries keep growing strong, too. Other major sectors are aerospace, biotechnology, defense, education services, food and beverage, health care, IT, packaging and renewable energy.

5. You Will Never Be Bored Here

Cedar Rapids offers interesting things to do – and many are fun for the family. One activity is visiting the Cedar Rapids Downtown Farmers Market that convenes on the 1st and 3rd Saturdays June through September, with about 150 vendors in attendance. There is also a special season-opening market on Memorial Day Weekend and an evening festival called Market After Dark in late August. Speaking of food, savor the flavor of local eateries during Cedar Rapids Restaurant Week every February. Meanwhile, you can attend a trade show, sporting event, or concert at Alliant Energy PowerHouse. For an unusual night out, Hawkeye Downs Speedway provides stock car races during the warm-weather months.

6. But Don’t Just Take Our Word for It

The city has been recognized often in recent times with accolades trumpeting the excellent quality of life found here. Those accolades include Cedar Rapids being named Technology Community of the Year – Large by the Technology Association of Iowa, and SmartAsset.com recognized Cedar Rapids as the No. 1 Best Place for Children. Yahoo Finance ranked Cedar Rapids among the Top 10 Best Cities for Living the American Dream, and Livability.com twice named Cedar Rapids among the 10 Most Affordable Places to Live.

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