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Honest Pros and Cons of Living in Columbus, GA

Columbus, located on the Chattahoochee River and a little under a two-hour drive from Atlanta, has a population of about 200,000. It’s the ideal community for those who want the amenities of a large city, but don’t want to deal with the hassles of a huge metropolitan area. Of course, no location is perfect, no matter how many perks there are to living there. This blog discusses the honest pros and cons of living in Columbus, GA so you can make an informed decision if you’re debating whether or not to relocate.

Pros of living in Columbus, GA

It’s affordable

Columbus came in at #3 on a 2022 Forbes list of the most affordable places to live with good weather. With a median home listing price of just over $200,000 as of July 2023 and a cost of living 12% below the national average, Columbus provides an opportunity to get more for less.

It has a fantastic location

Just three hours away from the major cities of Atlanta, Birmingham, Alabama, and Tallahassee, Florida, Columbus has a stellar location for commuters and those who want to take frequent trips to major metro areas. It also has the Columbus Airport which recently benefited from a $21 million upgrade, making it a convenient way to access pretty much anywhere you want to go.

It features plenty of fun activities

Whitewater rafting, plenty of trails for hiking and biking, several museums, and lots of festivals and events throughout the year provide endless opportunities for entertainment. During any given day, you can stroll along the Chattahoochee RiverWalk, peruse the 14,000 objects at the Columbus Museum, check out an interactive exhibit at the Coca-Cola Science Center, and get some fresh produce at the Market Days on Broadway. It’s also home to The National Infantry Museum, which offers a compelling and immersive experience showcasing the evolution of infantry tactics, weaponry, and technology, along with a Walk of Honor, which pays tribute to fallen soldiers.

It has a vibrant cultural scene

You don’t need to head to Atlanta to get your culture fix! RiverCenter for the Performing Arts puts on concerts, shows movies, and brings in acts like ballets and orchestras. The Springer Opera House has Broadway shows and musicals, and the Columbus Orchestra features a variety of unique performances and programs for art lovers of all ages. If you love art, you can also head to the Gallery on 10th, Heritage Art Center, or the Bo Bartlett Center.

It has beautiful weather

If you enjoy mild climates, you’ll love living in Columbus, GA. Highs rarely go above 90 and lows dip only occasionally into the 40s. You won’t have to deal with much snow or ice, and rainfall is typically just enough to keep everything vibrant and green.

It’s the home of Fort Moore

As the home of the massive Army base Fort Moore (formerly Fort Benning), Columbus boasts a strong military presence. More than 120,000 people call Fort Moore home, adding to the economy of the city. Fort Moore is also Columbus’s largest employer, providing jobs for military personnel as well as civilians.

It has fantastic restaurants and bars

Foodies won’t be disappointed if they decide to move to Columbus! From the Southern-inspired comfort food of The Black Cow to the upscale American cuisine and large wine list at Epic, there is something for everyone (and every occasion) in Columbus. Craving a steak in a quaint environment? Head on over to Mabella Italian Steakhouse. Looking for a trendy spot with great food as well as live music and comedy? The Loft perfectly fits the bill. Just want to grab a drink? You can check out all the craft beer options at Chattabrewchee, bring your canine companion to Fetch Park and grab a drink at the BARk while your pup plays, or savor a smoke and a whisky in the speakeasy atmosphere of 18th Amendment Cigar Bar.

It’s a great place to raise a family

With its highly rated public school system, family-friendly activities including museums, rafting, parks, and museums, and affordable cost of living, Columbus is a wonderful place to raise a family. Some of the best neighborhoods to do so include Dinglewood, Rose Hill, Boxwood Estates, and Phenix City, Alabama, a mere five-minute drive from Columbus.

Cons of living in Columbus, GA

There is a risk of severe storms

Though the climate and general weather in Columbus are a plus, there is a chance for severe storms which many people consider a drawback of living in this riverfront city. Tornadoes and damaging thunderstorms with high winds and hail are quite possible and occur most often in the spring months.

No major league sports

As with the majority of mid-sized cities, Columbus does not have any major league baseball, basketball, hockey, or football teams. However, it does have the Columbus Lions arena football team and the Columbus River Dragons minor league hockey team, and it hosts numerous sporting events throughout the year from roller derby to pro bull riding. If you really need a pro sports fix, Atlanta is less than two hours away and is home to the Falcons (NFL), Braves (MLB), Hawks (NBA), and United (MLS).

It’s not on the coast

Unlike the gorgeous Savannah, Georgia area with its Atlantic ocean breezes, and peaceful beaches, Columbus is not on the coast, and it will take several hours of driving to get there. However, if you really need a water fix, you can head to the Chattahoochee River or the Lake Oliver reservoir.

Though you won’t get to enjoy the ocean breezes or attend a major league sports game in Columbus, you will be able to afford a lovely home, have access to great schools, and partake in a variety of cultural, culinary, and entertaining activities. Decided the pros outweigh the cons and want to learn more about living in Columbus, GA? Reach out to experienced agent Mia Manns for expert guidance and to see what’s on the market.

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