I was single at 20 and single at 30, and to my surprise, single (again) as I slammed into 50. I could have used a good resource on best places to live for singles, not only once – but twice.
Naturally, what we want in a partner will change over time, just as our needs change when it comes to housing. At 25, we may have the stamina for skiing all day and partying through the night — hello, Denver? — so a well-located studio would suit us fine.
But 10 years later our preferences may shift. We’re happy with bustling cafés, jazz clubs or symphony, and pay no mind to a reasonable drive. We want more comfort and functionality in our homes, and possibly the same in our loved ones!
And what if you find yourself newly single as I did a few years back?
Single moms and dads have other criteria to factor into their choices of living situation: childcare, schools and transportation, not to mention proximity to the other parent. Cost of living becomes a significant issue, as the extent to which our wallets are thinned by divorce is critical to how we restart and reconfigure our lives.
Single and Looking? Best Cities for Love?
I’m a city girl at heart, and have always adored thriving urban centers. This was true before marriage and kids, and remains true after.
Zillow.com was kind enough to provide the following graphic. It’s useful in pinpointing the best cities for singles to find love, and equally, factors we should consider like: the percentage of single residents; the flow of new (single) residents; disposable income; and the number of hot spots – if you know what I mean – that are ideal for spending on meeting, greeting, tingling, mingling and generally having a great time!
Those top 10 cities for singles in pursuit of love?
Cities I Love. What About You?
On Zillow’s list, Washington, D. C., Atlanta, and Boston take the top three spots for cities conducive to singles finding love. As for their socializing styles and how they stack up, doesn’t that depend on who and what we’re looking for? Doesn’t it depend on our pursuit of hookups versus lasting love?
I love the D. C. area, though it’s been many moons since I lived there. Then there’s Boston, a.k.a. Bean Town, which is a terrific city, though I remember what it’s like to be snowbound for what seems like forever, and dreaming of warmer climes. Speaking of warmer, Atlanta certainly fits the bill, and not only in temperatures but warmth when it comes to Southern smiles and plenty of places to party!
Of course, the first two metro areas on the list are also known to be very expensive. And in addition to the items that Zillow mentions, in any consideration of relocating, at any age or stage, we have to consider:
- cost of living
- present and future income
- median income
- professional opportunities
- our unusual expenses
- transportation options
- health issues we may need to accommodate (for ourselves or kids)
- demographics of age, gender, gender orientation and marital status.
And how great is it that same sex marriage is now legal in so many states? That too, certainly, is a factor.
I Left My Heart…
I did in fact leave my heart in San Francisco — not once, but twice!
What a magnificent city, coming in at #9 on Zillow’s list.
Raleigh? I’ve passed through, but know little about it. I welcome your comments, for the benefit of those considering a move.
Then there is Pittsburgh, where I spent a weekend with one of my sons and have also traveled several times on business. All of my experiences were extremely positive, aided by great transportation, Carnegie Mellon and Pitt, along with culture and neighborhoods that drew me right in.
I have never visited St. Louis (#4), Denver (#5), Minneapolis (#7), and Nashville (#8), and I welcome your thoughts on these cities as single-friendly and family-friendly areas.
If you ask me, what makes a great city for singles isn’t just the availability of possible partners to date. Don’t we all need a wide range of activity options when it comes to girls night out or the guys’ equivalent, and the disposable income to enjoy what our neighborhoods have to offer?
Distance and Lifestyle Choices
If you’re not able to afford the city of your dreams, you can still date a resident of your favorite burg while you reside at a reasonable distance. In my own experience, when you start getting into longer distance coordination — especially if either of you have kids — you may find that the weekend relationship is the best you can do. And if your new-found love lives halfway across the country, you can manage that for awhile (I’ve done it), but do consider more proximate and pragmatic dating options.
Here are a few more of my dating do’s and don’ts:
- DO search on specific demographics if you know what you want.
- If you’re a woman looking for men of specific age / ethnicity / religion, there’s plenty of census data on the Internet.
- If politics is important to you – and relationships are political, aren’t they not? – consider red states and blue states, or red neighborhoods versus blue.
- DO consider the presence of educational institutions, to increase the likelihood of academically inclined partners.
- DO consider these same educational centers for yourself, always enriching personally, a great way to meet new people, and important if you’re considering switching careers.
Neighborhood News Flash!
When it comes to neighborhoods and rural areas, other sources remind us to consider all the factors that impact lifestyle. For example, dating life may pose challenging ratios for women, as in the case of Washington, D. C., which is far more advantageous for men seeking women than the other way around.
Want more when it comes to the down-and-dirty details of dating optimization?
Check out this nifty Interactive Map of US Singles Age 18-64.
And not incidentally, Zillow has interesting research on rents and home prices, which are obviously factors in any decision to move, as we decide on timing of relocations and choices to rent or to buy. And remember, whether you’re starting out or starting over, ask those with relevant experience in the cities that interest you.
Your Best City? Wherever You Are Your Best Self
Your best city for love? I’d say it’s the city where you feel like your best self. If it suits your values, your interests, your wallet and your profession, that’s a great start. If you’re a single parent considering relocation, and the lifestyle supports education and opportunities for kids, that’s a huge weight lifted. If the climate pleases you and you see growth potential for yourself, won’t you find ways to socialize?
Still, finance and demographics are either in your favor or working against you, so do keep in mind the influx of new residents, the affordability given where you are in life, and the nature of the relationships you’re looking to encounter.
What else might I recommend to my fellow singles entertaining the possibility of relocation?
Wherever you live, you deserve to feel at home in a place you can love — and that includes finding love when it’s a priority in your life.
Care to share some of your favorite cities for single life? Any insights into these top 10 and your experience of others as you start out for the first time or begin a second chapter?
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