Alex is the founder of 9Kilo Moving, which he started to help people easily find and choose the right moving company to make their move as stress-free and seamless as possible.
He has spent over 20 years working in the moving industry, so he knows every aspect of the business and uses his knowledge to write about the industry and give moving advice.
You know how they say that it’s often the little things that
make a huge difference? Well, it sure can apply to Rhode Island. This little
island on the east coast is not just the smallest state in the nation, but it
also happens to be the seventh least populated region. It’s true that even the
second smallest state (Delaware) is twice the size of Rhode Island. You may
have to squint your eyes to find it on the map, just like you do to read fine
print. But the incredibly compact size is just one of the interesting factors
of living in Rhode Island.
Since you’ll be moving from a bigger state into the tiniest
one, chances are that you’ll find things to be reasonably close here. So much
so that you perhaps run into familiar faces often. The state is also appealing
to many for its scanty traffic, close proximity to big cities like New York and
Boston, small town charm, miles of unspoilt beaches and quaint islands. Another
aspect that newcomers find impressive is that you can reach anywhere within the
state in less than an hour.
In all honesty, it would truly take you roughly an hour to cover the state from the north-south direction, while it’s even lesser if you drive from east to west. It shouldn’t be shocking to hear that anything beyond an hour is considered to be a long drive in Rhode Island! We know that reading a miniature version of the state’s profile isn’t going to cut it if you have to uproot your whole life to move here. Therefore, let’s delve into other practical aspects to help you form a better perspective about moving to Rhode Island.
CALCULATE MY MOVE
As a transplant, you may have to get used to the fact that
the temperatures in Rhode Island can swing in every direction. Weatherwise,
things are pretty inconsistent and could be termed as ‘moody’. You could have
days when it’s unreasonably cold during the summers too, even though ideally it
should be hot. But on an average, the state enjoys roughly 200 days of
sunshine, while the rest is a mix of bitterly cold days and moderate
precipitation. Overall, the quote by Mark Twain, ‘If you don’t like the weather
in New England now, just wait a few minutes’ truly applies to the climatic
conditions of Rhode Island. Having said that, below is a gist of the estimated
temperatures you can expect throughout the year.
Winters (Mid November to Mid March) – Winters in Rhode Island are cold, snowy and far from being
mild. It is necessary to be prepared to battle the icy conditions of the
season. Average temperatures fall in the range of 15°F (-9.4°C) to 20°F (-6.7°C)
for most of the winter months. Things are slightly warmer in the coastal
regions at 25°F (-3.9°C). If you’re a fan of snow, you’ll enjoy the fact that
the state receives roughly 8-14 inches of snow in a month, which is
approximately 22-55 inches of snow annually.
(Mid March to May) – During the transition from winter to
spring, snowfall decreases to roughly 4-12 inches. Do note that early spring
tends to register the most amount of rainfall, so you have to factor in the
unpredictable rains. In spring, average high temperatures could be anywhere
between 63°F (17.2°C) to 70°F (21.1°C). While low temperatures could drop to
45°F (7.2°C) to 50°F (10°C).
(June to August) – Summers in Rhode Island switch between
warm to hot. At times, temperatures do cross the 90°F (32.2°C) mark. But on
most days, you can expect it to come under the 73°F (22.8°C) to 78°F (25.6°C)
zone. The coastal areas tend to be cooler during the summers. Keep in mind that
you have to watch out for the occasional thunderstorms especially in the month
Autumn (September to the beginning of November) – Fall is when the weather turns around and it gets pleasantly comfortable. You can expect temperatures to come under the lovely range of 52°F (11.1°C) to 75°F (23.9°C) range. Yes, at times it can get cold, so it’s necessary to carry a light jacket. Bristol, the tree-lined streets of Providence and the small village of Jamestown are some of the best places to catch fall foliage.
Intra City Travel In Rhode Island
Public transportation in Rhode Island primarily consists of
bus services operated by the Rhode Island Public Transit Authority (RIPTA). Major
hubs and roughly 38 cities and towns are connected to each other via the bus
service. The most convenient fixed bus routes fall in the downtown Providence
area, Pawtucket and Newport. A huge percentage of the population depend on the
RIPTA to get in and out of the Providence area.
from the bus, Rhode Islanders also have the option to make use of the East Bay
Bike Path. This is a railway track that was no longer in use and hence got
converted into a 14.5 mile path for cycling. The path begins at Providence and
travels up to a point in Bristol County. The trail never disappoints and is
used annually by over a million residents.
Island also has an extensive network of well-connected roadways. And you’ll
probably find yourself using the highway almost everyday to get around the
state. Some of the primary roads are:
There are also several bridges that connect the islands on the bay to the mainland. The Claiborne Pell Newport Bridge and the Jamestown-Verrazano Bridge are two of the most commuted bridges among the rest.
See also: RI DMV Change of Address
Amtrak, which is the passenger railroad service that serves
most of the cities in the United states, has 2 train lines running through the
state of Rhode Island. In total, the whole state has 3 Amtrak train stations.
Below is a short snippet of these two train lines:
Some of the primary and most extensive airports of the state of Rhode Island are:
We’d also like to mention that residents in Rhode Island have easy access to the Logan International Airport that’s actually situated in the city Boston, Massachusetts. It can take you just 45 minutes to drive to Boston. And since there’s a wide variety of flexible flight options at the Logan International airport, many residents do take that extra step to drive up to Boston to get a better flight deal.
Health services, manufacturing industries and tourism are
few of the vital sectors contributing to the health of the economy of Rhode
Island. In addition to this, the finance division and tech industries are
equally growing into high-profile sectors, providing lucrative job
opportunities for residents.
Some of the notable companies that are part of the
prestigious Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 list have their headquarters set up in
the state. Below is a list of the top corporations so you can glance at the top
In a nutshell, the industries that are showing a significant presence in the job market are the healthcare industry, financial services and manufacturing. Newport, Woonsocket, Warwick, East Providence, Cranston and Pawtucket are few of the top cities where most of the largest employers of the state are concentrated.
According to reports by HomeSnacks, the average median rent
of houses in Rhode Island is $2,000, while the national average is roughly
$1,650 (so that’s a 21% difference in cost). The state has been ranked as one
of the highest rental costs in the nation several times. This is mainly because
of the widening gap between the rental prices and wages. However, you can
always browse for affordable apartments for rent in desired neighborhoods.
Since this is just an average, it is still very much possible to find places on
rent below the $2000/per month mark.
Having said that, here is a list of areas where the rent costs are relatively high:
You can choose to look at this list as places to avoid,
depending on the budget you have kept in mind. Like we said earlier, you don’t
necessarily need to be taken aback by the high rent, since there is a wide
range of rental options available.
Since housing is the biggest factor to consider while
calculating the cost of living, let’s address that first. When it comes to housing,
the average median value of homes in Rhode Island is $325,805 (according to
Zillow). To give you a price point, this
means you would be paying roughly $285,200 in RI, while the national average
for the same house stands at $231,200. This huge margin makes home ownership an
expensive affair for residents and transplants.
In regards to utilities, a single person’s estimated monthly
cost falls in the range of $1,000 to $1,200 (without rent). Depending on your
lifestyle habits and family size, monthly expenditure could go way above this
cost. This makes the cost of living in Rhode 22% higher than the national
average. However, on the plus side, the average median household income is
roughly $63,296 (according to Niche). That’s certainly relatively higher than
the national average which stands at $55,322.
The annual figure suggested to live comfortably in Rhode Island for a family of 2 adults and 2 children is $77,839. Do note that we’re sharing a rough price point to give you a better perspective into the cost of living. Depending on individual lifestyle patterns and the neighborhood you reside in, costs could turn out to be affordable or more expensive. For instance, the further you move away from the Providence area, the more affordable things begin to look.
The city of Barrington ranks as the number one place to live
in the state of Rhode Island (according to Niche). It also tops the chart for
best places to raise a family in the state. Barrington is mainly recognised for
its excellent school systems and exceptionally low crime rate. Boat clubs, golf
courses, well-maintained cycle paths and a great sense of community are few of
the other things that makes this city extremely appealing. The city is also
extremely green and has scenic waterfront views, since it’s situated right next
to the Providence river.
Median price of homes sold: $418,900Median rent: $1,350
Providence is the capital and the most
populated city of the state. It lies in close proximity to big cities like New
York and Boston. A large percentage of Rhode Islander’s are concentrated either
in central areas of this city or occupy the suburbs here. Providence also has
an extremely rich history, since it is one of the oldest cities in the United
States. 7 of the state’s top universities are situated in this city.
International college students and young professionals definitely contribute to
the vibrant atmosphere of Providence. The city is known to be extremely diverse
Median price of homes sold: $192,100Median rent: $972
East Greenwich is one of the wealthier
and more affluent parts of the state. Housing costs here are relatively high in
comparison to other cities. But on the plus side, the city boasts of a low
crime rate, family oriented atmosphere and an excellent location. Residents
here enjoy waterfront views and have easy access to the North and South
Providence areas, the beach and walking trails. But like we said, all the
fantastic amenities and perks of living in East Greenwich come at a luxurious
Median price of homes sold: $429,600Median rent: $874
If you’re looking for a city that is on
the quieter side of things, Kingston would be your best bet. The town is made
up of small villages, rural landscape and close knit communities, where most of
the residents own houses. If you seek the city bustle, you can always choose to
head to Providence, which is just 30 minutes away from Kingston. The city is
also home to the main campus of the University of Rhode Island. A strong sense
of community and the fact that everything is within walking distance are few of
the attractive aspects of living in Kingston.
Median price of homes sold: $353,000Median rent: $1,371
The city of Cranston is located just 10
minutes away from the hustle and bustle of the Providence area. It’s a great
little town to escape the city crowd. But you can always plug into big cities
and have enough access to all of its amenities. The neat streets, low crime
rate and variety of parks encourage residents to walk and bicycle here.
Overall, this city is extremely convenient, since you get a mix of both big
city life and small town charm. Residents here have the best of chain
restaurants and local small businesses.
Median price of homes sold: $228,300Median rent: $1,021
You will definitely be saving a few extra bucks when living in Rhode Island as compared to living in Massachusetts. As per Numbeo, a comparison between Boston in Massachusetts and Providence in Rhode Island, shows that all prices in Rhode Island are cheaper than those in Massachusetts.
rent prices are around 64% higher in Boston than in Providence, restaurant
prices and groceries are also pricier in Massachusetts. In other words, you
would be needing around $6,548 in Boston, MA, to maintain the same standard of
living that you could have with $5,100 in Providence, RI.
all other states, living in Rhode Island also has its own upsides and
downsides. Few of things that do not work in favor of Rhode Island include poor
infrastructure, high population density and extreme weather conditions. Another
thing worth mentioning are the high taxes in the smallest state of the country.
State and local taxes in Rhode Island seem to be around 25% higher than the US
Being the smallest state in the country, Rhode Island seems to be a place which you can easily navigate across, in a short spell of time. Now, depending on your fitness level, it is possible for you to walk across the entire state of Rhode Island within 2-4 days. If you’re planning to go from the east to west end, that would be around 37 miles and if you’re in great shape, then it is even possible for you to walk across Rhode Island in a day or two.
Rhode Island considers you to be its resident, if you are domiciled in Rhode Island or have at least been spending more than 183 days in the state. You will be required to file taxes in the state to establish your Rhode Island residency.
The state of Rhode Island has an appealing mix of small and big cities. Even though it is the smallest state in the nation, it has a cultural character that’s big enough to surprise you. If you’re particularly seeking a strong sense of community and a slower paced life, you may actually fall in love with everything Rhode Island has to offer. There are many little things that make up the identity of the tiny state of Rhode Island. And if you resonate with most of it, there’s a high chance that you’d like to call it your new home.
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