This spectacular region in Montana offers it all: breathtaking outdoors, affordability, career opportunities, a vibrant downtown, and so much more.
If you are wondering what kind of life you could live in Great Falls, MT, the answer is right in its name – great! Not only will you have a wealth of career options to choose from, but, work aside, you’ll find that the area is affordable, welcoming, easy to navigate and full of some of the best outdoor recreation you can find.
And, once people move to Great Falls, they are positively surprised to discover even more aspects that they love about this city – think standout museums, a lively downtown, fantastic restaurants, diverse entertainment options and even a symphony orchestra.
Why Residents Love It Here
“I love everything about Great Falls. Immediately when I landed, I knew it was home, and I never wanted to leave,” says Haley Thomas, who moved to the region from a small town in Kansas four years ago to join her soon-to-be husband in his hometown.
But a move to Great Falls isn’t just appealing to new residents looking to build a new life. People who grew up here find it attractive, as well. In fact, many who moved away for a spell are coming back to the region to raise their own families.
“When we lived in Bozeman, we were in a manufactured home that was almost $300,000. We built our house in 2017 (near Great Falls) for significantly less. Honestly, we wouldn’t be able to have the life we have here anywhere else in Montana.”
One example is Emily Drazich, a former clinical researcher turned stay-at-home mom, and her husband, who grew up in Great Falls, attended college in nearby Bozeman and stayed for almost 12 years before returning to the region. “It’s super welcoming, and we’re part of a great school community,” Drazich says. “We love our kids’ school, and that is a big part of our family.”
For them, returning to the city where they grew up was a no-brainer, as they wanted to be closer to family. But the move also allowed them to build their dream home on a beautiful piece of land just outside of the city.
Here, the median home value is $249,800 (September 2021), about two-thirds of the state average and far lower than the national average of $374,900.
Build a Great Career Here
When it comes to finding a job in Great Falls – whether you are just starting out or looking to level up your career – you will find ample opportunities here. The region is home to a collection of well-known companies, such as Blue Cross and Blue Shield; Centene, a health insurance agency; and D.A. Davidson, a financial planning company. Plus, residents can find jobs with local companies of different specialties.
“When I moved to Great Falls, there were multiple job opportunities across many companies that aligned with the parameters I was looking for and my experience,” Thomas says. “I’ve been with Wendt (an advertising agency) for about 18 months. I was so excited when my position came up and I got the chance to work for them.”
The Great Outdoors Are Calling
Residents who move to Great Falls love the idea of being surrounded by the amazing outdoors. “We’re centrally located, so within a half hour, you can be in a totally different atmosphere with no end to the possibility for exploration,” Thomas says. “Great Falls has four excellent golf courses (two public and two private). The River’s Edge Trail is right in town for hiking and biking, and I walk to work every day.”
River’s Edge Trail is a paved urban path that links many local parks and attractions along both sides of the city’s historic riverfront.
Great Falls boasts 57 parks. A local favorite is Gibson Park, which features a historic cabin, beautifully maintained gardens, playground space and a pond.
“We’re right outside of town,” Drazich says. “Even though we’re on 10 acres, we get country living right next to the city. It only takes five minutes to get to something outdoors.”
And when it comes to ease of mobility, Great Falls offers virtually no traffic or commute time: 80% of residents spend less than 15 minutes traveling to work. “If you have to slow down and wait at a stoplight, that’s annoying,” Thomas says. “There’s no backup and no traffic – ever.”