Moving to Des Moines IA


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    Preparing to move to Des Moines, the capital city of Iowa? Well, the hidden treasure of the Midwest, Des Moines, is a combination of both astir and agrestic, offering a fascinating medley of bustling city life and serene countryside appeal.

    Picturise a place that gives you a homely feel, persuading you of enriching culture and compelling experiences, top-to-toe opportunities, warm people and a decent environment.

    No matter the type of personality you are- nature lover, family person, adventurer, urbaniser or retiree, you’ll love this enchanting city and our blog post will guide you through this exciting new journey of life! 

    1. Is Des Moines safe?

    Des Moines is a relatively safe city to live in with an average violent and much higher property crime rate of 37 and 61, than the national average crime rate of 23 and 35, respectively.

    However, the city is quite safe for residents, and tourists at night as it has safer neighbourhoods, well-managed hotels and resorts to stay in and continuously patrolled cities at night. 

    Like other metropolis US cities, Des Moines also has a higher crime rate than the national average.

    This seems to be startling, and safety precautions like the presence of police in high-risk communities and crime-zoned areas, and continuous patrolling in cities and tourism areas should be considered to make sure of residents’ safety while living in the city. 

    If you are relocating to Des Moines, consider settling down in one of the safest Des Moines neighborhoods which include Millman, Brook Run, Waterbury, Westwood and Salisbury Oaks. 

    2. Things to know before moving to Des Moines, IA

    Knowing about a place is essential before moving and settling down in an unknown place.


    This helps in overcoming the consequences and leading a trouble-free life in Des Moines. So, here is what you all should know about the Hartford of the West. 

    3. Living in Des Moines, IA

    Living in Des Moines gives you a peaceful life in the bustling city and downtown.

    With a score of 6.8 for quality of life, it offers a great place to enjoy the outdoors, great food, fun things, and culture, get in touch with friendly people, grow your career, and experience a cheaper lifestyle in a thriving urban city. 

    Life in Des Moines is about leading a charming big-city life with a laid-back small-town vibe. People here are friendly, welcoming and helpful, creating closely knitted communities.

    The world seems so small, you will know everyone and be friendly with each passing day.

    The big city amenities, ample job opportunities, vibrant culinary scenes, and remarkable festivals and events, with the friendliness of a small town, make Des Moines soulful. 

    4. Cost of living in Des Moines, IA

    Des Moines, Iowa has a much lower cost of living of 79, which is 21% less than the national average.


    The annual average salary in Des Moines is around $48,000 and an ideal hourly minimum wage in Iowa’s Des Moines averages $20 per hour.

    This means to lead a great life in Des Moines, one needs to earn anything over $42,000. 

    Des Moine’s reasonable cost of living makes it a considerable place to live in Iowa and the entire US nation.

    According to the Bag Credit 2023, the city ranks #4 best city with lower cost of living and #5 top cities for higher salaries and lower cost of living.

    The city offers an affordable lifestyle with a great advantage for house owners to buy properties from single condos or modern apartments, while renters can also get attractive offers on rental homes. 

    Besides this, groceries, utilities and transportation are also cheaper in Des Monies, but healthcare expenses and miscellaneous expenses are found to be higher than the national average.

    Hence, the city drags attention as a socially and economically stable area to reside in than other urban cities of the nation. 

    Cost of livingDes MoinesIowaUS
    Overall Expenses8680100
    Housing cost6855100


    5. Tax system in Des Moines, IA

    Des Moines imposes an income tax rate of 5.50%-8.40%. It also has a sales tax rate of 6.94%, which includes the state sales tax of 6% and local sales tax of 1%.

    Along with that, a property tax of 1.79% is imposed on the asserted value of the property owned by the city’s residents. 

    Des Moines is a tax-friendly city. The tax system of des moines ranks #38 in the state business tax climate index 2023.

    It offers a deduction of income tax of $6000-$12000 on the senior’s income and applies taxes on other forms of their income. However, social security is exempted from state income tax. 

    Although the property tax rates are higher than the national average, housing costs, demand, and lower cost of living make it affordable to get a property in the city.

    The sales and the income tax rates in Des Moines are reasonably competitive compared to the state and the US average, although high-income individuals may end up recompense more. 

    ParticularsDes Moines
    Sales tax6.94%
    Property tax1.79%
    Income tax5.50%-8.40
    Excise tax4.40%-6%


    6. Weather conditions in Des Moines, IA

    Des Moines has a humid continental-type climate with hot warm summers and frizzy snowy winters, with partly cloudy skies throughout the year.


    Over the entire year, the average annual temperature varies from 15°F to 85°F, and rarely drops down to -5°F or rises above 95°F. 

    Des Moines enjoys plentiful sunny weather and experiences stunning spring blossoms and fall foliage, leaving a compelling natural beauty all over the city.

    It gets 205 sunny days, 35 inches of rainfall for 107 days, and 33 inches of snow on average per year.

    While January is the coldest month of the year, with an average temperature of 13°F, July is the hottest month of the year in Des Moines, which receives an average high temperature of 86°F. 

    Des Moines sees rainfall during the spring and autumn seasons, and snow during winters.

    As the city comes under tornado alley, it mostly experiences severe tornadoes and thunderstorms anytime in early summer and spring. 

    MonthWeather conditions in Des Moines Iowa
    December-AprilThe weather is dry and cold. Snowfall is less with around 5 inches on average. During March, the atmosphere becomes warm and rainfall occurs. Average high temperature of 49oF.Average low temperature of 15oF.
    April-MayThe weather is both dry and wet. Rainfall is common. The humidity level is quite high. The mean high temperature is up to 71oF. The mean low temperature is up to 40oF.
    SeptemberThe weather is cool and pleasant. Rainfall is moderate with fewer thunderstorms. Average high temperature of 78°F.Average low temperature of 56°F.
    June-NovemberA significant drop in temperatures, with occasional snowfall at the end of the month. Cooler evenings and rainfall are less common. The average high temperature is up to 81oF.The average low temperature of 45oF.

    7. Things to do in Des Moines, IA

    Des Moines is home to Iowa’s largest, and most reputed attractions, and offers something for everyone with its seasonal flavours, festivals and entertainment.

    There are a lot of things to do, explore, and visit all across this metropolis; keeping a clear picture of your itinerary will keep your visit interesting in this midwest city. 

    Here is a list of fun things to do in Des Moines for different groups. 

    KidsVisit Blank Park Zoo to see a variety of animals. Explore the Science Center of Iowa with kids for a fun and educational experience Take a walk-through of Adventureland Park. Visit the Iowa State Fair in August
    SinglesRide on the 9 km long paved trail around Easter Lake Park. Attend sporting events at Iowa Cubs. Explore the vibrant Downtown Des Moines. Visit a ghost town in Iowa, Des Moines`s Iowaville.
    CouplesGo to Flix Brewhouse to watch movies. Shop outlet stores in Des Moines. Enjoy the scenic High Trestle Trail. Spend a day at Gray’s Lake Park.
    FamiliesSee the stunning Iowa state capitol. Visit Pappajohn Sculpture Park. Take a tour of Historic East Village. Watch special events at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden.
    SeniorsTake a tour of Salisbury House. Explore the State Historical Museum. Enjoy nature at Water Works Park. Buy fresh veggies at the Downtown Farmers Market.

    8. Housing in Des Moines, IA

    Des Moines has an affordable housing market and offers reasonably priced rental real estate and homes for both buyers and renters.


    The median housing price in Des Moines is about $175,000 which is much lower than the national average’s median home value of $338,500.

    The cost of rental homes in Des Moines varies from $700-$1700 for a studio to 3 bedroom apartment. 

    The recent year has witnessed a fall in Des Moines home prices by 6.2%, and a rise in appreciation rate by 11%, compared to last year.

    This becomes a reason for home buyers to make a smart investment in properties and apartments in Des Moines.

    Also, potential real estate property buyers can take a chance of owning a land and building their dream home, instead of looking for a readymade house.

    The average cost to build a house in Iowa’s Des Moines ranges between $150,000-$350,000. 

    Housing costsDes Moines IowaUS
    Median home$175,000338,100
    Rental house$700-$1700$1500-$3500


    9. Cost of Moving to Des Moines, Iowa

    Generally, the cost of moving is based on the service and its provider. The moving companies in Des Moines, Iowa charge $145 per hour.

    If you are planning to relocate locally within Des Moines, the average cost of moving companies ranges from $950 to $5,120.

    If you are moving out of Des Moines, the cost will depend on the distance and time.

    Moving to Des Moines by hiring a moving company is effortless, and budget-friendly, as they provide quality service and works on all license, documents and certificates, which makes moving hassle-free.

    Below are a few recognized moving companies in Des Moines, Iowa.

    • Two Men and a Truck
    • U-Haul Moving & Storage of Southeast
    • Smooth Moves
    • College Hunks Hauling Junk & Moving
    • Maher Brothers Transfer & Storage

    10. Pros and Cons of Moving to Des Moines, Iowa

    Des Moines is a thrilling city that offers the perfect combination of urban convenience and attractions. It is one of those cities that people consider best as a moving destination.

    However, it still has quite a few merits and demerits that you need to know before relocating to Iowa’s capital city.


    • Low cost of living.
    • Affordable tax rates.
    • Plenty of job opportunities.
    • Art, creativity and wonderful nightlife.
    • Warm and friendly people.
    • Moderate and suitable weather


    • The crime rate is quite high.
    • It’s a harsh winter season.
    • Health insurance is costly.
    • Lack of public transit.
    • Poor school system.
    • Low-income rate.

    11. Places to stay in Des Moines, Iowa

    Des Moines is home to around 2 lakh people, including many retirees and young professionals who want to move to the Midwest, in search of peace, outdoor opportunities, jobs, lower living costs and more.


    Needless to say, the cost of housing and living is affordable here.

    While it has all the amenities and attractions, read on more to learn about the suitable neighbourhoods to stay in Des Moines, Iowa.

    1. Waterbury

    Waterbury is one of the best neighbourhoods in Des Moines. There are plenty of bars, coffee shops, parks, schools and attractions.

    Many retirees reside in this city. The place is also free from violent crimes.

    2. Clive

    Clive is a suburb of Des Moines, Iowa that stands at the third position as the best place to raise a family. It is highly eminent for its Greenbelt Park and trail system.

    The region is close to the best schools, gyms, food trucks, music festivals, gas stations, grocery stores, etc.

    3. West Des Moines

    It is a quiet place, with a population of about 68,000 people. The cost of housing is decent and many affordable apartments are available in this area.

    The people and neighbours are amazing and the crime rate is too low.

    4. Waukee

    Waukee is a segment of the Des Moines metropolitan area. There are two modern and well-built high schools.

    You may not find big food chains but there are several worthy local restaurants. Moreover, the crime rate is moderate.

    5. Urbandale

    It is located in the western part of Des Moines. Urbandale has various kinds of housing options convenient for residents. 

    It is filled with various parks, sports fields, and community centers. The region is also close to Walnut Creek State Park, a huge natural area for exploring and hiking.

    Moving to Des Moines, Iowa FAQs

    What’s the best way to get around Des Moines, IA?

    The best way to get around Des Moines, IA is by bus (DART).

    Is Des Moines rural or urban?

    Des Moines is the fastest-growing urban city, known to be the capital of Iowa.

    Why is Des Moines so great?

    Des Moines is so great because of its low cost of living, business sector, and strong infrastructure and community to raise a better life. 


    As you have disclosed the hidden treasure of the Midwest, the city’s responsibility of providing sustainability, exceptional quality of life, big city amenities and fantastic recreational opportunities ensures a universal and satisfied lifestyle.

    So whether seeking a change in the city, new opportunities or a quick vacation, embark on your journey to this Mid-Western city and create the life you crave.