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Living in Virginia – Pros and Cons & Cost of Living

Virginia is a southeastern state of the U.S. Having a long Atlantic coastline it extends from the Chesapeake Bay to the Appalachian Mountains. It’s also one of the 13 original colonies. Richmond is the capital of Virginia.

Living in VirginiaThe languages most commonly spoken are Spanish as well as English. French and German are also frequently spoken by the locals, followed by Korean which too is widely spoken across the 92 localities. Their currency is the U.S Dollar (USD).

Having been known for a majority of well-educated citizens and hefty employment opportunities, Virginia has been a target living place for many. Not to forget the various lifestyles it offers with its small towns and considerably sized cities. According to your preference, there are traditional communities and well as other flexible ones which act as a plus point.
But before deciding to pack all your belongings and make a shift to Virginia, here are a few Pros and Cons that you should know:

Pros of Living in Virginia

Diversity

Being one of the most diverse regions in the country, Virginia is home to many ethnic groups such as Blacks or African Americans, Asians, Native Americans, Native Hawaiians or Pacifics Islanders, Whites and a few other races. It has formed a beautifully mixed palette of many cultures.

With an increasing population from different parts of the world, the diversity in Virginia is still growing and hence it can be a safe, homely community for different races.

Quality of Education

You could go places with a Virginia education as the University of Virginia, Virginia Tech and College of William and Mary, all three considered among the top colleges and universities in the nation are located there. Not to exclude other highly prioritized educational institutions. Also, there’s the in-state discount if you choose to settle and raise your children to send them to Virginian schools and colleges.

Vineyards, Award-Winning Wine and Food Culture

With a growing number of wineries and more than 200 magnificent vineyards, Virginia promises plenty of pleasant day trips for all its inhabitants. Tasting the award-winning wines with non-other than high-quality cheeses made in Virginia itself can alone come off as a major temptation for families to make a move there.

This state also offers an assorted range of delicacies and seafood, making it a haven for all food lovers. From barbecued meat to shrimps and oysters, there are so many mouth-watering treats that Virginia promises.

Festivals, Beaches and Beautiful Seasons

Folks at Virginia are never short of festivals or events as there seems to be one every weekend.

With the diverse cultures and accepting people all coming in together, there’s always a celebration happening. Also, there are plenty of events and races held of every kind. A point not to be missed is Virginia’s natural beauty, From mountains to beaches, the state has it all. And not just mediocre, the natural blessings are more than enough to keep you in awe. Also, pretty winter snow, summer beaches and amazing spring and fall seasons will make you fall in love with Virginia in all weathers.

Exceptional Job Opportunities

Even when more than a quarter of the folks work for the government, according to surveys, at 3.4% the Virginian unemployment rate is still below the national average.
Also not to forget, the various other job opportunities in the Virginian market for people of all calibres providing suitable wages.

Politically Stable

Two words that you’ll come across more than often when searching for Virginia is that it’s a Swing State, meaning it’s neither red nor blue. A swing state refers to any purple state, which means it could sensibly be won by either the Democratic or Republican presidential candidate in American politics. Such states are mainly focused on by both major-party campaigns.

Cons of Living in Virginia:

Nasty Traffic

Just like in any other bustling state, Virginia suffers from an issue of heavy traffic. Mainly around the busier sides where the population falls high. A traffic jam in average could last up to half an hour and cover six miles. Depending on the time and travel, driving into D.C. from Virginia might keep you sitting in the traffic for hours. So make sure to keep yourself updated about the traffic before leaving for anywhere, when in Virginia.

High Taxation

According to GOBankingRates list in 2015, Virginia was ranked #7 as the Top 10 Worst States for Income Tax. A load of state and local taxes are heavier on the residents of Virginia than on the residents of other states, according to sources such as the Tax Foundation.

Unpredictable of Weather

Virginia does mostly have pleasant weather in all seasons but it can for sure be unpredictable. The temperature shifts can sometimes be a problem as you do not know what to expect before heading out of the house. Summers can sometimes get sticky and hot also the winter snowfalls in the upper regions may be problematic to some people with cold allergies and such. But there’s always an option of checking the weather beforehand and settling at lower regions where the winters are mild.

Illegal to Curse

The law in Virginia forbids its residents or any person, in general, to use curse words in public, no matter what the situation. Anyone who mouths profanities is considered guilty and is charged a fine up to $250. There are signs that specifically request you to not curse when in Virginia. So if you’re someone who’s into swearing a lot, Virginia may be a little heavy on your wallet.

Nuclear Power Plants

Virginia alone inhabits 4 nuclear power plants. With two of them being close to the main city of Richmond, roughly 40 miles northwest. Virginia also shelters one of the largest naval facilities in the world where nuclear-powered aircraft carriers and submarines can be anchored.

Cost of Living

Compared to other states, Virginia has pretty high costs of living. In plain words, the cost is above the national average. Of course, it comes with a well-maintained quality of life. If you’ve chosen to settle in Virginia and raise a family, the costs of living may be considered as there are special discounts and privileges for residents.

But if you’re in Virginia not to settle and just for employment purposes this may not be the right state for you. So before moving into Virginia, you should consider the effect it might have on your budget and make a well-planned decision.

Healthcare

With top of the line healthcare facilities, and having more than 100 hospitals, also 21 of them meet the U.S. News’ highest standard, Virginia makes sure that the health of its residents is a top priority. So if you’re in Virginia and god forbid, some health problem occurs to you, it’s certain that you’ll be in the best care.
But also, the healthcare in Virginia will make you pay more than the rest of the country. This statement applies regardless of where you may live in Virginia.

A 2017 report from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality confirms this very idea. The numbers portray that the average individual employee contribution for single coverage healthcare at private companies in the U.S. is $1,415. Virginia residents pay quite more, as the average in Old Dominion is $1,625 – $210 more than the previously mentioned national average.

Groceries

The Missouri Economic Research and Information Center’s 2018 cost of living study considered the price of groceries in its review. Virginia was considerably near to the U.S. index of 100, as it stays put at 100.3. Mississippi (91.4) came in as the lowest, while Hawaii (124.2) was the priciest state.
Also, regarding food prices in Virginia’s capital. According to Numbeo.com data from May 2019, the recommended minimum monthly spend on food per person in Richmond is $309.87. That’s around $15 below the U.S. recommended minimum ($324.10). If you’re planning to eat out or buy non-staple foods in Richmond, you should prepare yourself to pay up more than just that.

Transportation

Gas prices in Virginia are below the national average by a regardable price. According to GasBuddy data from May 2019, the average price of a gallon of gas in Virginia is $2.64. The national average is more than 20 cents higher, at $2.90.
For public transportations, an unlimited-ride 30-day pass from the Greater Richmond Transit Company will cost you $60. The senior/disabled/medicare/minor rate is $35.
If you live in northern Virginia and need to take the Metrobus to connect with the D.C. Metro, you can buy a 7-day regional bus pass for $17.50.

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