If you are looking for a city that is warm with southern hospitality and rich with culture, Louisville, Kentucky is a great place to settle.
As Kentucky’s largest city, it was estimated to have a population of 766,757 as of the 2019 census.
In this guide, we will tell you more about what it is like to live in Louisville. We will go over cost of living, employment opportunities, education, transportation, and other important things to know.
One of the best things about Louisville is the city’s overall affordability. For data to help us analyze cost of living, we will turn to Sperling’s Best Places.
Sperling’s uses a scale to rate cost of living where the US average is 100. Ratings above 100 are higher than average costs of living, while ratings below 100 are lower than average costs of living.
On that scale, the rating for Louisville is 88.4, making it less expensive to live in than the average location in the US.
The rating for Kentucky is 83.6, so that is a little bit lower than the rating for Louisville, but not too much lower. So, for a metropolitan area, Louisville is a very cost-effective place to live.
You are probably wondering about the breakdown of costs. The only category in which Louisville is more expensive than the nationwide average is transportation, which is still quite close (103.2).
Costs are lower than the nationwide average in Louisville for all other categories, including grocery expenses, healthcare costs, housing, utilities, and miscellaneous expenses.
In fact, the most dramatic savings are in the area of housing, as you will see below.
On the same scale where the nationwide average is represented by 100, housing costs in Louisville are only 69.6.
In fact, the median home cost is only $160,800. You can contrast that with the median nationwide home cost of $231,200.
So, that is spectacular news if you are in the market for a house.
Now you know about the low cost of living in Louisville, Kentucky. But what can you expect in terms of the local job market?
The US median income in 2019 was $65,712. The US Census reports a median household income in Louisville from 2015 through 2019 of $53,436, and a per capita income for the same time period of $30,943.
Although that is a lower income for Louisville than the US average, it is not unexpected given the reduced cost of living for this area.
Kentucky is also a state with a flat income tax rate of 5%. There are some states with lower income taxes, but there are also some with much higher income taxes (indeed, some states have tax brackets in excess of 9%).
The sales tax rate in Kentucky is 6.00%, which is fairly low.
So, between the low cost of living and moderate tax rates, you should be able to earn and save effectively living here.
Sperling’s also gives some projections on future job growth, stating that Louisville may see a 38.33% job growth rate in the future compared to 33.51% nationwide.
In which industries can you expect to find jobs in Louisville?
Shipping and cargo are big in Louisville, as are automobile manufacturing and bourbon whiskey distillation.
Top employers in Louisville, KY include UPS, Ford Motor Company, GE Appliances, Humana Inc., Norton Healthcare, UofL Health, Yum! Brands, Papa John’s International, Brown-Forman, Anthem, Kindred Healthcare, LG&E and KU Energy, and the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Louisville.
For elementary and secondary education, there are 246 schools in Louisville. These comprise 168 public schools and 78 private schools. Not surprisingly, given the prominent presence of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Louisville, a lot of them are Catholic schools. View Louisville school ratings.
On average, the budget in Louisville is $12,392 per student, which is right around the nationwide average of $12,383.
Some of the local schools are very highly rated, for example Dupont Manual High School.
What about postsecondary education? Options include the University of Louisville, Bellarmine University, Spalding University, Louisville Bible College, Boyce College, Simmons College of Kentucky, Spencerian College, Strayer University, Sullivan University, Jefferson Community and Technical College, and Sullivan College of Technology and Design. Indiana University Southeast.
As you might expect given its prominent role in the shipping industry, a number of beltways pass through the city. It also is home to the Louisville International Airport. The Norfolk Southern and CSX freight railroads run through Louisville, along with the Paducah and Louisville Railway and the Louisville and Indiana Railroad (both regional).
Ironically, however, the Kentucky Cardinal passenger rail was discontinued, and no other passenger rail service replaced it.
There is also no light rail system for commuters. There used to be a set of motorized trolleys, but those went away in 2014.
But this is not to say that Louisville is lacking in public transportation options. LouLift zero-emission buses can get commuters to select locations downtown, and there are also regular city buses operated by the Transit Authority of River City (TARC). These buses can not only get you around Louisville itself, but also to other parts of Jefferson County and beyond.
Walking is another great way to get around Louisville. In fact, “Walk Score”: https://www.walkscore.com/cities-and-neighborhoods/ listed Louisville in 2016 among the most walkable cities with populations above 200,000.
Sperling’s commute stats are a little out of date with many more people working from home than in pre-pandemic times, but when they were last updated, they said that 3% used mass transit to get to work, 3.8% worked from home, 8.9% carpooled, and 80.4% drove to work by themselves.
The average time listed for a one-way commute in Louisville was 22.4 minutes. As the US average is 26.4 minutes, that is significantly shorter. So, if you do need to commute to work rather than work from home, that is excellent news.
Something else that makes Louisville an attractive place to live is its climate. Sperling’s climate index scores locations on a scale of 1 to 10 where 10 is the most comfortable climate possible. On that scale, the US average is a 7, and Louisville gets a 7.3.
Thus, the climate in Louisville is more comfortable than the average climate nationwide.
During the summer, temperatures range up to about 88 degrees Fahrenheit. During the winter, they drop down to around 26 degrees Fahrenheit.
Louisville gets around 46 inches of rain each year and about 9 inches of snow.
So, for those that are looking for four distinct seasons, this is a very nice place to live. View our local weather.
You may be wondering what you can do during your time off while you are living in Louisville. What kind of leisure and entertainment opportunities await you?
Louisville is particularly famous for its sports. The Kentucky Derby takes place here at Churchill Downs. While there are no major league sports teams here, there are a number of professional, semi-professional, and college teams that are popular.
This city also hosts a number of important events every year. Examples include the Derby Festival, the Humana Festival, Abbey Road on the River, the Forecastle Festival, and others. There are quite a few popular indie bands that hail from Louisville as well.
If you are looking for museums and other attractions, you can visit the Frazier History Museum, the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, the Kentucky Science Center, the Speed Art Museum, and more.
Those who prefer outdoor parks will be glad to know there are 122 of them in the city, providing more than 13,000 acres of land to enjoy. Prominent parks include the Otter Creek Outdoor Recreation Area and the Jefferson Memorial Forest.
For more to do, check out our Arts & Events Calendar.
So, whatever you are into, you will find it in Louisville!
Now you can envision what it would be like to live and work in Louisville, Kentucky. Ready to apply for a mortgage and move to a beautiful, affordable home in this community? To schedule your consultation, please give us a call at (502) 327-9770.
We also have offices in Cape Coral, Florida. You can reach us there at (239) 766-8344. Along with Kentucky and Florida, we serve customers in the states of Indiana, Tennessee and Colorado as well
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