Although it’s known as the “Crossroads of America,” Indianapolis is actually a great place to make home. This midwestern metropolis offers a booming job market, a low cost of living, and an endless list of things to do. It’s also home to the Colts, the Indianapolis 500, and one of the best high school marching bands in the country. If you’re thinking about making the move, here are 7 things that all Indianapolis residents need to know.
This may come as a surprise, but Indianapolis is consistently ranked as one of the best cities in the country for finding gainful employment. This is especially true if you’re looking for a job in tech or big pharma. As a matter of fact, the Indianapolis tech industry is so robust that some journalists have compared it to Silicon Valley. That said, the top three tech employers are DoubleMap, Infraware, and SmarterHQ. In big Pharma, Eli-Lilly is the major player. This massive pharmaceutical corporation responsible for manufacturing several brand-name drugs, including Cialis and Prozac.
For a city with so much economic growth, Indianapolis has a shockingly low cost of living. According to PayScale, Indy’s overall cost of living is a whopping 8% lower than the national average. To be specific, Indy’s groceries, utilities, transportation, and healthcare are lower than the national average by 8%, 9%, 8%, and 3% respectively. The best bang for your buck, though, is in real estate. The cost of housing is a whopping 19% lower than the national average. Some of the least expensive neighborhoods include Edinburgh, Beech Grove, and Mooresville.
If you like to experience the seasons, you’ll love Indianapolis. While the winters can be downright frigid, the summers are sunny and mild. According to Sperling’s best places, Indianapolis experiences 186 days of sunshine per year, and the average high in mid-July is only 85 degrees. Indiana is also home to several species of deciduous trees, so you’ll be able to watch the leaves change from the comfort of your own home. It also receives less rain and snow on average than the rest of the United States, so while it’s cold in the winter months, you may not have to shovel the driveway too frequently.
If you’re planning on living in Indianapolis, you’ll definitely want your own vehicle. According to Indianapolis Monthly, only 3% of Indianapolis households are without at least one car. 19% have just one vehicle, and the other 80% have two cars or more. On the other hand, Indianapolis has less traffic than most big cities. Every year, the Global Traffic Congestion Index compiles a list of the most congested cities in the world. Of the 174 cities on the list, Indy comes in at 171. Furthermore, only 1.8% of Indiana workers have a “super commute” of 90 minutes or more. So while traffic certainly exists, it’s much less of an issue that it is in New York, LA or the other 170 cities on that list.
Fans of professional football have a lot to look forward to in Indianapolis. The Colts relocated to Naptown back in 1984. Since then, they’ve made the playoffs 16 times, won two conference championships, and even the Super Bowl in 2007. The Colts’ fan base is so extensive that the 15th largest city in the United States transforms into a ghost town during home games. Today, the Colts play in Lucas Oil Stadium near Downtown Indianapolis. While the immediate surroundings have a relatively high crime rate, a skilled realtor can help you find a desirable neighborhood nearby.
In addition to professional football, Indianapolis is also home to one of the biggest motorsports competitions in the world. Every Memorial Day, more than 250,000 people fill the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to watch the Greatest Spectacle in Racing. The Indy 500 is part of the Triple Crown of Motorsports and celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2011. True fans of the sport can also learn about its history at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum. This interactive, educational facility includes race cars from IndyCar, NASCAR, Formula One, and more.
If you enjoy competitive sports, you owe it to yourself to check out the Drum Corps International World Championship. This professional marching band competition involves hundreds of talented marchers, musicians, and dancers. Every August, the best drum corps in the world gather in Lucas Oil Stadium to compete for the title of DCI World Champion. This affinity for great marching bands also extends to Indianapolis Public Schools. Take Carmel High School. Their Marching Greyhounds have won the Bands of America grand championships over 20 times—more than any other band in the country.