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View of Downtown Tacoma, WA, during Rush Hour

Safe, Affordable Neighborhoods in Tacoma

Thinking about living in Tacoma? With its stunning views, walkable neighborhoods, plentiful outdoor recreation, and mild year-round weather, the City of Destiny is a great place to settle down. Not to mention, Tacoma is one of the best places to live in the Pacific Northwest and offers more affordable housing than neighboring Seattle. If you’re moving to Tacoma, here are five safe, affordable neighborhoods to consider!

  • Eastside-Enact
  • Fircrest
  • North End
  • Northeast Tacoma
  • University Place

Eastside-Enact

Two-story gray home in East-Enact, Tacoma. Photo by Instagram user @homeherollc.

Photo via @homeherollc

  • Home Price: $160,712 median purchase price; $915 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 21% of Washington cities
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

Eastside-Enact is one of the best neighborhoods in Tacoma, thanks to its budget-friendly housing! Alongside recently renovated historic homes, residents can find Craftsman and Victorian-style houses, as well as farmhouses and new construction homes. Those looking for larger-than-average lots, a tight-knit community, city parks, and well-kept yards will love this area. In addition, this Tacoma neighborhood has amazing views of the city, Tacoma Dome, and Mount Rainier! And its close proximity to I-5 makes it the ideal place for anyone looking for a short commute to downtown.

Things to Do in Eastside-Enact

Enjoy a picnic, hike pedestrian trails, or mountain bike at Swan Creek Park. Play baseball or softball, catch some air at the skate park, or spend a day at the pool at Stewart Heights Park. Hop on the 4.3-mile-long Pipeline Trail that runs through Eastside Tacoma. Let your kids run around Verlo Sprayground at Verlo Playfield. See your favorite artists like Harry Styles, My Chemical Romance, The Weeknd, and Celine Dion at Tacoma Dome. Shop for plants to landscape your yard with at the local Portland Avenue Nursery. Order the Buddha Delight or Peanut Sauce Noodles when you visit @ Thai Restaurant. Have Prawn Tempura Basket, Tofu-Soba, or Gyoza at Yummy Pho & Teriyaki. Go to Garden’s Gourmet Salads for healthy eats like a Washington Apple Salad or Teriyaki Bowl. Or try Carne Asada Especialidade or Mojarra Frita from Los Tamales Restaurant.

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Fircrest

  • Home Price: $282,400 median purchase price; $1,167 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 63% of Washington cities
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

One of Tacoma’s best suburbs, Fircrest offers a small-town feel within an urban area. The expansive presence of Mid-Century Modern homes—as well as cottages, Cape Cods, and Craftsmans—keep that small-town ’50s and ’60s feel alive. Plus, the neighborhood thrives on its strong sense of community, especially with its newly built community center and local events like Fircrest Grad Celebration and Community Yard Sale, Youth Nights. And although coffee shops, cafes, stores, and more line the streets, other jobs and activities are never too far away, as Fircrest is located right off WA-16! These are just a few of the reasons why Fircrest is called the Jewel of Pierce County!

Things to Do in Fircrest

Attend the Annual Strawberry Festival at Fircrest Park for strawberry shortcake and live music. Celebrate the dog days of summer at Fircrest Fun Days, where you’ll find food, field games, crafts, bouncy houses, and more. Become a member of Fircrest Golf Club and join competitions, tournaments, and club leagues. Enroll the kids in summer camp, watch roller derby, or roll around the rink at Skateworld Tacoma. Go for a swim in the pool at Fircrest Community Center. Savor a Fircrest Club while you enjoy a Flavored Latte at Espress-O-Yourself. Order Fresh Halibut Fish & Chips or Veal Marsala at Spring Lake Cafe. Pick up a Sammy’s Combo or Smokin’ Sweet BBQ Chicken pizza at Sammy’s Pizza. Visit Royal Thai Bistro for Sauteed Basil Curry or Pad Thai. Or devour The Po Boy at Verone’s Italian Kitchen & Sausage Company.

North End

Two-story Craftsman home with Tudor influences in North End, Tacoma. Photo by Instagram user @kyleehill.

Photo via @kyleehill

  • Home Price: $331,293 median purchase price; $939 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 68% of Washington cities
  • Perfect For: Students, singles, young professionals, families, retirees

With waterfront parks, quaint storefronts, and tree-lined cobblestone roads, North End offers a relaxing and beautiful place to live in Tacoma. Located adjacent to Commencement Bay, houses in the area offer breathtaking views of Puget Sound, Vashon Island, and Browns Point. This neighborhood is home to areas like Old Town Tacoma and Proctor District, each with historic landmark homes, Victorian houses, Tudors, and condos. It’s also home to liberal arts college University of Puget Sound and offers college students plenty of restaurants and fun things to do in the area!

Things to Do in North End

Visit Puget Creek Natural Area for access to the Puget Creek Trail, Procter Street Trail, a playground, and one of Tacoma’s three salmon-bearing streams. Spend Saturdays shopping at Proctor Farmers’ Market for local plants, produce, dairy, and baked goods. Join a summer bowling league at Chalet Bowl. Catch the latest movie release at Blue Mouse Theatre or watch a screening of Rocky Horror Picture Show every second and fourth Saturday of the month. Grab a Nitro Draft Latte or a Cortado at Bluebeard Coffee Roasters. Enjoy gourmet sandwiches like Rick’s Dip, Key West Cubano, or 26th Street Rueben at Rosewood Cafe. Head to Northern Fish in Old Town for your choice of Fish & Chips right on the water. Order a Cheeseburger, Hot Dog, or Chickenwich at retro 1950s burger joint Frisko Freeze. Or plan a night out with friends at Dirty Oscar’s Annex for electric cocktails like The Motherload, Mountain’s Out, and Minty Suspect.

Northeast Tacoma

Executive house in Northeast Tacoma. Photo by Instagram user @mbzphotos_pnw.

Photo via @mbzphotos_pnw

  • Home Price: $307,282 median purchase price; $1,471 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 79% of Washington cities
  • Perfect For: Singles, young professionals, families, retirees

Need some distance from the bustle of downtown? Located about 20 minutes from Downtown Tacoma is Northeast Tacoma, one of the safest neighborhoods in the city! Although the area has a variety of bars, coffee shops, and parks, Northeast Tacoma is known for its dense suburban feel. Initially a planned housing development built in the 1990s, this neighborhood has winding roads and sidewalks, with several family-friendly homes in cul-de-sacs. Homes often offer a view of Commencement Bay, Port of Tacoma, and Downtown Tacoma’s skyline.

Things to Do in Northeast Tacoma

Head to the beach for a picnic at Browns Point Lighthouse Park. Search for horse clams or go saltwater fishing at Dash Point State Park. Grab your clubs for a challenging but scenic 18 holes at North Shore Golf Course. Visit Center at Norpoint, which has a playground, splash pad, pool, fitness classes like Barre and Senior Power, and summer camps for kids. Become a member of Corinthian Yacht Club of Tacoma (CYCT) and sail around South Puget Sound. Chow down on Chicken Fried Steak, Greek Scramble, or Golden French Toast for a hearty breakfast at Browns Point Diner. Try a fusion of European and Latin American food at Pimienta Bistro & Bar with dishes like Pollo Rostizado and Mesquite Prawns & Scallops. Get your seafood fix when you order a Clam Chowder Sourdough Bread Bowl or Prawns & Scallops at The Cliff House Tacoma. Or get a Gyro Plate or Falafel Plate at Mediterranean Gyro Grill.

University Place

Craftsman-style executive home in University Place, Tacoma. Photo by Instagram user @ruthyanntaylor.

Photo via @ruthyanntaylor

  • Home Price: $293,700 median purchase price; $1,017 median monthly rent
  • Crime Rate: Safer than 45% of Washington cities
  • Perfect for: Students, singles, young professionals, families, retirees

Looking for a quiet Tacoma suburb that boasts great schools, modern homes, and plenty of parks? Look no further than University Place! While this water-view neighborhood has some historic homes, most were built after 1950. On top of that, residents will find west-facing homes that offer a gorgeous view of Pacific Northwest sunsets over the water. For families who want good local schools, University Place has highly rated public and private schools like Sunset Primary School, Narrows View Intermediate School, and Charles Wright Academy—the area is even recognized as one of the best places to raise a family in Pierce County! University Place is also home to the only Trader Joe’s in all of Pierce County and the only Whole Foods in Tacoma!

Things to Do in University Place

Visit Chambers Bay Golf Course, home of the 2015 U.S. Open Championship and one of the greatest public courses in the country. Head to Curran Apple Orchard to pick apples, attend the summer concert series, or celebrate the annual Cider Squeeze festival in late summer. Hike the Chambers Bay Loop—which includes the Grandview Trail and Soundview Trail—for breathtaking views of the bay and snow-capped mountains in the distance. Take the family to 75-acre Titlow Park for a day at the beach, pick-up game of basketball, or tennis match. Order a Dirty White Chocolate Americano or Coffee On The Beach at Classic Coffee. Go out for hibachi and sushi dishes like the Sake Don or Rock & Roll at Sapporo Steakhouse. Sink your teeth into Grilled Mahi Mahi Tacos or the Boathouse Prime Rib Dip at Boathouse 19. Or grab delicious Thai dishes like Gai Yang BBQ Chicken or Kee Mao Noodles at Chili Thai Restaurant.

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Tacoma, Wa 5 Safe, Affordable Neighborhoods

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