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Safe, Affordable Neighborhoods in Milwaukee in 2024

Relocating to Milwaukee? Living in Brew City means a lower cost of living than comparable cities like Madison, access to great schools, and an endless list of fun things to do. Check out these five safe, affordable Milwaukee neighborhoods!

Bay View

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  • Home Price: $185,616 median purchase price; $992 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 63% of Milwaukee neighborhoods
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

With great views of Lake Michigan, affordable real estate, hip bars and restaurants, and plenty of things to do, Bay View is one of the best neighborhoods in Milwaukee! Green space is abundant in Bay View, with South Shore Park, Cupertino Park, and the 73-acre Humboldt Park—where you can hike, attend community events, or ice skate in the winter. The real estate in Bay View ranges from classic brick cottages and Tudor-style, single-family houses to more modern apartments and townhomes—making this affordable Milwaukee neighborhood a popular spot for both renters and first-time homebuyers. Bay View also has a strong art scene—residents of all ages can sign up for art classes at the The Art School or attend the annual Bay View Gallery Night (BVGN), which features local art and small Milwaukee businesses. And with the the Bay View Neighborhood Association throwing fun events like Film On The Hill and Central Bay View Classic, there are plenty of opportunities to get together with the Bay View community!

Things to Do in Bay View

Peruse old and new books at neighborhood favorite Voyageur Book Shop. Pick out candles, home goods, clothing, and jewelry from local Milwaukee artists, or sign up for fun jewelry metalworking workshops at local boutique Sparrow Collective. Discover old-school jams and classic albums at Acme Records. Catch a blockbuster or classic film at the gorgeous Avalon Atmospheric Theater. Grab Short Rib Hash, Breakfast Casserole, Biscuits & Gravy, or other brunch staples—and make sure to grab a pie to-go—at retro-inspired Honeypie Cafe. Split a pizza with your choice of toppings, or try specialty pies like the Diavola or Margherita at Tenuta’s Italian Restaurant. Pick and choose from rolls like the California Roll and Spicy Scallop Roll on the maki menu at Hungry Sumo. Or sip on a Deadhead IPA, Sleeper Street, or other craft beers with friends at hip Milwaukee pub Burnhearts.

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Jackson Park

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  • Home Price: $149,242 median purchase price; $851 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 68% of Milwaukee neighborhoods
  • Demographics: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

Located in the southwest area of Milwaukee, Jackson Park is an excellent neighborhood for those wanting a suburban feel and a tight-knit community. Full of affordable bungalows, cottages, and ranch-style homes, this small neighborhood is ideal for anyone looking to buy a home in Brew City. Families in the area can send their children to Milwaukee Public Schools like Manitoba School or Milwaukee Spanish Immersion School. College students looking to stay close to home can attend Alverno College, while healthcare professionals will appreciate Jackson’s Park’s accessibility to Aurora St Luke’s Medical Center. The Jackson Park Community Association helps neighbors get to know each other through frequent community events like the Jackson Park Farmers Market. And with the Kinnickinnic River running through the northern portion of the neighborhood, the adjoining Kinnickinnic River Parkway, and Jackson Park—it’s easy to find green space for outdoor recreation.

Things to Do In Jackson Park

Play a game of doubles, go fishing at Jackson Park Pond, bike the Oak Leaf Trail, and more at Jackson Park. Check out a book, encourage your kids to join the Kid’s Club, or attend a Discovery Lunch and other family-friendly events at Milwaukee Public Library-Zablocki Branch. Watch the little ones go down the slides at Manitoba Park. Get your heart pumping with a private boxing session or a one-on-one session with a personal trainer at MKE Fitness. Start your morning with Old Fashioned Buttermilk Pancakes, a Greek Yogurt Parfait, or a Grecian Skillet paired with a fresh cup of coffee from Omega Restaurant. Try a bowl of Homemade Chili, a Triple Decker Club, or Zebb’s Fried Chicken at Zebb’s Restaurant. Devour Tu Casa Nachos, Enchiladas De Mole, or Empanadas from Tu Casa Mexican Restaurant & Bar. Or try the Triple “P” or spicy PLT Pizza with Pesto Tomato Cheese Bread at Ned’s Pizza.

Northpoint

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  • Home Price: $284,080 median purchase price; $1,077 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 73% of Milwaukee neighborhoods
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, retirees

If you’re looking for a cozy Milwaukee neighborhood with tree-lined streets, lakeside views, and a friendly community—Northpoint may be the right place to live! The neighborhood shares its name with local Victorian Gothic landmark, the North Point Tower—a 175-foot water tower that was built in 1874. Unique architectural influences are evident in this affordable MKE neighborhood, which range from stately Victorian mansions and single-family homes to affordable Milwaukee apartments and townhouses—not to mention the presence of the Fredrick Bogk House designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Located about 15 minutes from Westown, this area is close enough to Milwaukee’s city center that you can find great shopping, dining, and entertainment nearby. And be sure to check out outdoor recreation opportunities at Bradford Beach and McKinley Beach along Northpoint’s eastern border. With private schools like Catholic East Elementary School and Maryland Avenue Montessori School nearby, Northpoint is an excellent neighborhood for families, while medical professionals will have an easy commute to Ascension Columbia St. Mary’s and Madison Medical Milwaukee – Water Tower Medical Commons.

Things to Do in Northpoint

Tee up with friends on the 18-hole range at Lake Park Golf Club, attend free community events in Milwaukee like Music in the Park, or play tennis at Lake Park. Explore art exhibits, sculptures, and the Renaissance Garden at Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum. Learn about Milwaukee’s maritime history at the North Point Lighthouse & Museum. Marvel at the Marble Hall, see exhibits like Talk Back and Not Pictured, or take a guided tour at the Charles Allis Art Museum. Gather with friends for shareable, vegan-based bites like Roasted Red Cabbage, Eggplant Caponata Orzo, or Mushroom Tartine at Strange Town. Fill up on Korean menu items like Bibimbap, Samgyeopsal, or a Korean Style Hot Stone Bowl with your choice of toppings at Stone Bowl Grill. Make a reservation for an upscale date night with beautiful views and classic French entrees like Steak Tartare, Tapenade de Saumon, and Coq Au Vin at Bartolotta’s Lake Park Bistro. Or order the Happy Cow Impossible Burger, Corn Dogs, and Cheesy Beef Fries paired with a Peanut Butter Custard Shake from MooSa’s.

Story Hill

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  • Home Price: $166,700 median purchase price; $770 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 74% of Milwaukee neighborhoods
  • Demographics: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

Located along the Menomonee River, the neighborhood of Story Hill is another safe, affordable place in Milwaukee. This neighborhood offers Milwaukee residents a quiet, suburban feel with affordable housing options ranging from modern apartments to Tudor and Colonial houses along tree-lined streets. As a family-friendly neighborhood, kids can attend Story Elementary School, Woodlands School-Bluemound Campus, Hawley Environmental School, or nearby Marquette University High School. Need to commute to nearby places in Milwaukee County? Story Hill is only 10 minutes to Wauwatosa, West Allis, and the Village of West Milwaukee.

Things to Do in Story Hill

Watch the Milwaukee Brewers (MLB) hit a home run at American Family Field. Let the kiddos play on the playground, have a family picnic, or set up lawn games at Mitchell Boulevard Park. Find your inner zen with yoga classes like Vin to Yin or Feel Good Hot Vinyasa at Firefly Yoga Loft. Try the Shakshouka, Brunch Burger, or Crep-uritto for brunch in Milwaukee at Story Hill BKC. Order classic Italian entrees like a bowl of Tomato Bisque, Linguine Carbonara, or Risotto Quattro Fungi from Balistreri’s Bluemound Inn. Devour an Onion Straw Basket, Signature Ribs & Fried Chicken, or BBQ Cubano from Saz’s State House. Snack on Killer Bee Wings, Crispy Beans, or Mini Tacos paired with a Lakefront Riverwest Stien from Spitfires on Stat. Or enjoy a Shaved Steak Sandwich, Pork Loin Sandwich, or Perch Ruben at 4th Base Restaurant.

Washington Heights

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  • Home Price: $184,610 median purchase price; $977 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 70% of Milwaukee neighborhoods
  • Demographics: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

One of the best neighborhoods in Milwaukee, residents of all ages will enjoy living in Washington Heights! Those looking to purchase Milwaukee real estate with manicured front yards along tree-lined streets can find a variety of affordable housing styles ranging from single-family Bungalows to multi-family Craftsman-style homes. Children living in this safe MKE neighborhood can go to Hi-Mount Community School, Saint Sebastian School, or Neeskara Elementary School. And with shops, restaurants, community events along West Vleit Street, or Washington Heights Neighborhood Association-sponsored events like the Washington Heights Night Market or Washington Heights Easter Egg Hunt, there’s plenty in the neighborhood to keep residents busy.

Things to Do in Washington Heights

Spend the day fishing at the Washington Park Pond, attend a summer concert series at the Emil Blatz Temple of Music, or learn about the environment at the Urban Ecology Center in Washington Park. Shop for clothes, jewelry, lotions, and more made by local artists at Swoon Trinkets & Doodads. Learn how to blow glass by signing up for classes at Square One Art Glass. Watch classic films, or attend Friday Night Freak Show at Times Cinema. On your way to work, grab a Mexican Mocha with some Steel Cut Oatmeal or a Kitchen Sink Omelet from Highlands Cafe. Looking for BBQ in Milwaukee? Order the Pulled Pork Sandwich, Rib Tips, or The ‘Alex’ Rib Platter paired with Potato Salad or House Baked Beans from Heaven’s Table BBQ. Try the Guinness Onion Soup, Cajun Chicken Wrap, or the Shepherd’s Pie from O’Brien’s Irish-American Pub. Or satisfy your sweet tooth with a scoop of Mixed Berry Sorbetto or Caramel Sea Salt Gelato from Cold Spoons Gelato.

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About Mike Beutler

Mike Beutler is a writer and digital content specialist who transitioned to self storage in 2020 after several years in the airline industry. His travels cultivated a passion for exploring cities across the U.S. and abroad and inspired him to learn more about practical insights for urban living. With 14 moves under his belt, both locally and cross-country, he also has a passion for minimalism and organization, and sharing tips to help others make any space feel like home while staying organized.