Moving from NYC to Chicago

Moving from NYC to Chicago is a bittersweet transition. The city on Lake Michigan is one of the largest metro areas in the U.S. and has much to offer to any newcomer who wishes to settle in. Great dining, spacious city parks, bountiful museums – the Windy City has all it takes for cozy urban living. But before you make a call to leave the beloved NYC, get some basic info on this vast Illinois city. Moving to a new city is never simple. And moving to Chicago, with 77 different communities and neighborhoods to choose from, takes some serious planning. However, there’s no reason bite your nails. The array of housing options, employment opportunities, and amenities make the shift worthwhile.

Housing costs and options

One of the best things about moving from NYC to Chicago is the significant reduction of housing costs. This is definitely a change for the better. Whereas in Chicago you can rent a 1 bedroom apartment in the city center for $1,200, it is virtually impossible to do so in NYC.

A brick building with exterior stairs.
Housing options range from waterfront houses to small studios in the city center

To sum up the situation, statistics show that NYC is by 72.08% more expensive than Chicago! Of course, prices vary depending on the neighborhood and the choice of housing unit, but they are still rather affordable in relation to average annual income. And the options are endless. From Victorian-era buildings, luxury waterfront units to affordable small studio apartments there’s something to fit every taste and pocket.

Where to live?

Mainly, the city can be divided into five major areas:

  • North Side
  • North Side – Lakefront
  • West Side
  • South Side
  • Downtown

Each of these neighborhoods has its advantages. Whereas West Side holds relatively low rents, families with children prefer North Side due to a wide range of single-family homes and a neighborly small-town feel.

The famous Chicago Theater in downtown Chicago.
Living in Downtown is great – it’s lively and walkable but the rents are higher

The abundance of parks and outdoor activities make this area similar to some of the best Brooklyn neighborhoods for families. Students tend to flock to South Side, a melting pot of ethnicities and the home of the University of Chicago. As for Downtown, it’s great to be in the heart of the city, but you’d better have the means!


Is Chicago safe? No metro area can take pride in low crime rates. It is true that Chicago has long had a reputation as a center of crime, but things have changed for the better over the past decade. Most areas are safe and well-kept, but with the population of 2,716,450, incidents are bound to happen. And with the history marked by  Al Capone and John Dillinger, the perception of Chicago as a crime capital is understandable. But that’s not Chicago of today. Local authorities have been trying hard to reduce the number of incidents and the results are not missing out. Statistics show that the number of shooting incidents has been reduced by 30% over the past two years.

The job market

When you’re moving from NYC to Chicago, the bad news is that you are moving away from a world of opportunities. The Big Apple offers jobs that virtually fit every profile. The rich cultural scene offers jobs for musicians, art handlers, curators, designers – you name it. But the transition to Chicago lifestyle should not concern you in that way. You’ll be lucky to find that Chicago offers an abundance of work opportunities in all kinds of industries. Finance, health care, and education are some of the strongest branches. However, the cultural scene is not to be underestimated either. As for tech experts, there’s never a shortage of things to do. In addition, Chicago is home to dozens of Fortune 500 companies that offer opportunities for high-flying career seekers that like to climb the corporate ladder.

Make the transition quick and painless

Every relocation is difficult, especially when you’re moving long distance. Moving from NYC to Chicago implies a 12-hour drive, and this is the least of your worries.

A truck moving from NYC to Chicago.
Moving from NYC to Chicago takes up to 12 hours.

As both cities are known for harsh winters and loads of snow, a DIY winter relocation is out of the question. Make the move as painless as possible and leave the hard work to experienced long distance NYC movers. You have enough planning and preparation to do already. Concentrate on how to adapt to the new environment and how to make the best use of the opportunities that are before you.

Pack your stuff wisely

The long journey by road requires an experienced professional driver, but it also takes packing expertise. As the costs of your move will be based on the mileage and the weight of your luggage, there’s no need to overload the truck. Declutter your home before the move and get rid of all the things you keep for no reason. Pay attention to fragile items. They need extra wrapping and sturdy boxes to keep them safe from breakage. As for artsy objects, heavy and delicate items such as piano, professional assistance is a life-saver. Should you need assistance in this matter, do not worry. Dorothy & Martha Moving NYC experts are your next door neighbors.

Moving from NYC to Chicago – why not?

If you’re still worried about the major change you are about to make, maybe you should rephrase the question that bothers you. Why not move to Chicago? In many aspects, Chicago is similar to NYC. It’s a huge and diverse city that offers a plethora of opportunities. The same goes for New York. There are some great neighborhoods for newcomers to NYC, and some that are better avoided. In fact, as you are already used to the advantages and disadvantages of living in the big city, you can only benefit from the shift. Lower housing costs will leave more space in your budget to do the things you’ve never had the chance. Do not be afraid of the change. Pack up and head for the Windy City!

Free Moving Quote