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Safe, Affordable Neighborhoods in Salt Lake City

Moving to Salt Lake City? One of the country’s best mid-sized cities, Utah’s capital is one of the best cities for jobs and remote work, making it a perfect home for young professionals. Plus, in addition to offering a range of budget-friendly housing options and fun things to do, Salt Lake City provides residents with green spaces—like Big Cottonwood Canyon and the Twin Peaks—as one of the best cities for outdoor recreation. Check out these five safe, affordable Salt Lake City neighborhoods!

Central City

  • Home Price: $208,506 median purchase price; $770 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 74% of Salt Lake City neighborhoods
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals

If you’re looking for affordable neighborhoods in SLC for young professionals, Central City is a great place to start! This trendy hangout is known for its eclectic shops, indie bars, restaurants, fun events, and art near Downtown SLC. Residents of Central City can find affordable housing—everything from single-family bungalows to newly-constructed apartments. In addition to its great location and budget-friendly homes, this area’s proximity to The University of Utah makes it a popular neighborhood for college students and staff. Plus, in addition to using the easily-accessible UTA light rail, residents can bike or walk to work in the most walkable neighborhood in Salt Lake City.

Things to Do in Central City

Catch a concert, participate in free Weekday Workouts, ice skate in the winter, or chow down during Food Truck Thursdays at Gallivan Center. Window shop at Cabin Fever, Pottery Barn, Olive & Cocoa, and other boutiques at Trolley Square. Join classes in the Art Workshop Series or Craft Paint Night, learn from diverse speakers in Conversations at The Leo, or appreciate exhibits like Art Through Experience and science-focused Flight at The Leonardo. Wake up to the smell of fresh Bavarian Cream Bismarks, Applesauce Donuts, or Maple Bars at Banbury Cross Donuts. Grab a Halal lunch near Downtown SLC with a Keema Kabob Wrap, Curry Fried Fish Wrap, or Grilled Tandoori Chicken at Curry Fried Chicken. Splurge on Lobster Roll, Spicy Lobster Sliders, Clam Chowder, and more from Freshie’s Lobster Co. Grab a drink, see national musicians, and experience the underground local music scene at The Urban Lounge. Or make a toast with summer specials like the Dark Rye Manhattan or Perfect Daquiri from Red Rock Brewery.

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East Central

  • Home Price: $296,578 median purchase price; $894 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 68% of Salt Lake City neighborhoods
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families

With plenty of bus routes and a light rail to nearby University of Utah Hospital and the Salt Lake City International Airport—in addition to close proximity to Downtown SLC and The University of Utah—East Central is one of the best neighborhoods in Salt Lake City. This relatively quiet, affordable SLC neighborhood is especially favored by college students and other young adults for its international eateries, unique shops, underground entertainment scene, and welcoming community. In fact, the huge whale sculpture, Out of the Blue, was even commissioned near the 9th and 9th district to symbolize the respect and kindness of those living in this Salt Lake City neighborhood. Plus, renters can find modern apartment complexes to call home, while SLC home buyers have a variety of East Central houses to choose, including Bungalow, Contemporary, Craftsman, and Shotgun-style houses.

Things to Do in East Central

Shop for locally-made clothes, artwork, chocolate, accessories, stationery, and many more gifts at Salt & Honey Market in the 9th and 9th retail district. Catch indie flicks, award-winning shorts, film classics, and even Sundance Film Festival screenings at the iconic Tower Theatre—or learn filmmaking with their non-profit partner, MAST. Discover one-of-a-kind pants, shirts, bags, and more for your wardrobe at second-hand shop Vantage. Indulge in Brioche French Toast, a Frangipane Croissant, Tea Cake, Quiche, and other locally-sourced French sweets at Tulie Bakery. Fill up on a seasonal, locally-sourced plate of Tahini-Spiced Falafel, Lemon Dijon Roasted Chicken Breast, or Citrus Soy Tuna from Vessel Kitchen. Enjoy authentic dishes like Curry Puff, Shrimp Tom Yum, or Pad Siew at Skewered Thai. Or cool off with a rotating list of 40 monthly gelato flavors, including Pistachio, Chocolate, or Coconut Sticky Rice at Dolcetti Gelato.

Greater Avenues

  • Home Price: $442,638 median purchase price; $757 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 95% of Salt Lake City neighborhoods
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

Salt Lake City is known as one of the best places to live near the mountains, and the Greater Avenues‘ proximity to the Wasatch Mountains lives up to this claim! One of the most significant local historic districts in the city, the beautiful desert landscape of this safe SLC neighborhood is split into two zones—the Upper Avenues and the Lower Avenues. In the Upper Avenues, you can find historical Victorian, Craftsman, Queen Anne, and Tudor-style homes in Salt Lake City overlooking large foothills and green spaces like the City Creek Natural Area. In the Lower Avenues, Salt Lakers can easily access Downtown Salt Lake City and the Utah State Capitol, or participate in community activities like an annual Memory Grove Park Cleanup, the Avenues Community Garden, or the free two-day Avenues Street Fair. College students living in the Avenues—as locals often refer to the combined neighborhoods— can quickly walk or bike to class at The University of Utah, while younger children can attend Wasatch Elementary School, Ensign Elementary School, or Bryant Intermediate School.

Things to Do in Greater Avenues

Stroll the curving walking trails, paint beside the duck-filled ponds, or soak in the stunning sunset from the Anderson Tower Monument at Memory Grove Park. Bring your teen to a Coding with Clark Planetarium workshop or a Dungeons & Dragons quest at the Salt Lake City Public Library. Take adult water aerobic classes or sign your kids up for swim lessons or the Northcrest Narwhals Swim Team at Northcrest Swim Club. Head to the Natural History Museum of Utah to explore ten different galleries and learn about the local history. Start your morning with a Browned Butter Carmel Latte, Mint Limeade, or Lox Toast at Publik Coffee Roasters. Expand your palette with vegan BBQ dishes like Chipotle Jackfruit Tostadas or Korean BBQ Strips at Blatch’s Backyard BBQ. Pair your meal with house-brewed beers like a Blizzard Wizzard IPA, City of Gold pale ale, or Sour Ranger ale at Avenues Proper. End your night with a sweet treat like a Decadent Hot Chocolate, Banana Split, or Brownie Caramel & Chocolate Ganache at Hatch Family Chocolates.

Liberty Wells

A dark red brick cottage with black shingles, white accents on windows and doors, and a LGBT pride flag in the front yard. Photo via Instagram user @lovelyoldhomes

Photo via @lovelyoldhomes

  • Home Price: $215,480 median purchase price; $731 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 42% of Salt Lake City neighborhoods
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families

Want tree-lined streets and a yard without sacrificing location near Downtown Salt Lake City? Liberty Wells is a laid-back, friendly neighborhood for people who want a mix of urban and suburban amenities! As an affordable SLC neighborhood that blends historic architecture with modern development, Liberty Wells has plenty of budget-friendly homes in SLC—ranging from two-story Victorians to Contemporary apartments and condos. This area is also one of the best Salt Lake City neighborhoods for families, thanks to its tight-knit community and top-rated schools like Hawthorne Elementary School and Salt Lake Arts Academy. And older students can attend the South City Campus of Salt Lake City Community College to study arts and sciences close to home. Plus, residents who call Liberty Wells home while living in SLC will love the shared community garden and the Liberty Park Farmers’ Market in the summer!

Things to Do in Liberty Wells

Go swimming, play volleyball and Bocce ball, or check out the Chase Home Museum of Utah Folk Arts at Liberty Park. Stick around to admire native and global birds at the Kennecott Wetlands Immersion Experience, help your kids search for plants and animals at the daily Sense-ational Stream Exploration, or have an interactive Breakfast with the Birds at the Tracy Aviary & Botanical Garden. Take the kids to Herman Franks Park to have fun on the playground, socialize your dogs at the Herman Franks Dog Park, or play a game of baseball. See the Salt Lake City Bees (MiLB) take on their rivals at Smith’s Ballpark. Pick up a Nina Simone or Choco Chai signature drink and Greek Toast in the morning at Alchemy Coffee. Relax with a casual breakfast of FTF (French Toast Foolishness), Huevos Mexicanos, or a Jazz Omelet at The Park Cafe. Bring the whole family for a Sumbusa with Beef or Chicken, Siga Wot, or Yemisir Alicha at Mahider Ethiopian Restaurant. Or sing karaoke, play poker, or battle it out during The World Famous Trivia Night at Piper Down Pub while chowing down on Canadian Poutine Fries, Irish Stew Bowl, or Shepherd’s Pie.

Yalecrest

A brown brick tudor home with tan accents, a clean sidewalk and ard, and flowers blooming around the home. Photo via Instagram user @lovelyoldhomes

Photo via @lovelyoldhomes

  • Home Price: $405,460 median purchase price; $1,049 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 79% of Salt Lake City neighborhoods
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

Prime location, historic architecture, green spaces, and safe streets all make Yalecrest one of the best Salt Lake City neighborhoods. Close to both Downtown SLC and The University of Utah, this safe SLC neighborhood provides access to the city’s hustle and bustle while maintaining a suburban feel. Yalecrest—known locally as “Harvard-Yale”—is also one of the best places to buy a home in Salt Lake City, especially compared to more expensive neighborhoods nearby like Wasatch Hollow and East Bench. Home buyers can take their pick of Tudor homes, Craftsman-style cottages, or Victorian bungalows. Many residents also love calling this Salt Lake City neighborhood home because of its unique streetscapes, irregularly-shaped lots, and architectural subdivisions, like the Cottage District. Plus, families love living in Yalecrest, too, for the neighborhood’s kid-friendly activities in SLC and highly-rated schools like Uintah Elementary School and Bonneville Elementary School.

Things to Do in Yalecrest

Go for a jog or practice your birding skills at Miller Park Bird Refuge and Nature Park. Practice your swing at the driving range, work on your short game at the chipping green, or book a tee time at Bonneville Golf Course. Drive a few minutes west to see a Black Howler Monkey, watch the daily elephant performance, or attend animal-themed Paint Nights at the Hogle Zoo. Admire exhibits like Air and 2020: From here on out, draw the sky with cyanometers, or make a chalk mural with the kids at the Utah Museum of Fine Arts. Grab a Macchiato and Lemon Ricotta Pancakes in the morning, or a Truffle & Asparagus Grilled Cheese with a City Whale cocktail in the evening at Emigration Cafe. Order Sour & Spicy Cold Noodle, Scallion Pancakes, Beef Hot Pot soup, or Boba Milk Tea from Sasa Kitchen. Or share Smoked Salmon Salad and Roasted Fingerlings or specialty pizzas like the Children of the Corn or Pretty in Pink at Nomad East.

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Neighborhood statistics from AreaVibes

Salt Lake City, UT 5 Safe Affordable Neighborhoods.

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.