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Living in Lakewood Washington - EVERYTHING You Need to Know

What is Living in Lakewood Washington Like?

Living in Lakewood, Washington, is a unique experience that offers a mix of small-town charm and big-city amenities. Located in Pierce County, just south of Tacoma, Lakewood has approximately 60,000 people. The city is known for its natural beauty, access to outdoor recreation, and a diverse community that includes military personnel and retirees, families, and young professionals.

One of the most popular attractions in Lakewood is the Lakewold Gardens. This 10-acre estate is a hidden gem with an English-style garden, a greenhouse, and a collection of rare plants. Another attraction is the Lakewood Towne Center, an outdoor shopping center with over 40 shops, restaurants, and a movie theater. Lakewood is also home to several parks, including , the largest park in the city, with over 340 acres of land for hiking, biking, and sports. The American Lake Park is a beautiful spot for picnicking, swimming, and fishing, with a stunning view of Mount Rainier. Lakewood also has access to Chambers Bay, a world-renowned golf course that hosted the 2015 U.S. Open.

Lakewood is centrally located between Seattle and Olympia in the heart of Pierce County. This location provides easy access to major employers in the area, including Joint Base Lewis-McChord, which provides over 40,000 jobs. Other major employers include Clover Park School District, CHI Franciscan, and Pierce County Government.

The cost of living in Lakewood, Washington, is very affordable compared to other cities in the region. Housing costs are the most significant contributor to Lakewood's overall cost of living, with the median home price hovering around $450,000. However, various housing options are available, including apartments, townhouses, and single-family homes at different price points to accommodate the varying budgetary needs of those living in Lakewood, Washington.

If you're searching for a tranquil and relaxed town with abundant outdoor recreational activities, convenient proximity to a major city, and affordable cost of living, then Lakewood, Washington, might be the perfect place for you! Keep reading to discover more about living in Lakewood, including details about Lakewood's neighborhoods, schools, cost of living, and the pros and cons of living in Lakewood, Washington, to help you decide whether moving to and living in Lakewood, Washington, is the right choice for you!

The Moving to Lakewood Washington Team

Let our team of trusted professionals help you buy or/and sell a home in Lakewood, Washington. To connect with a local expert/real estate professional in Lakewood, Washington, CLICK HERETo start receiving emails with homes that match your criteria anywhere in Washington, CLICK HERE and sign up for Listing Alert. With a little info on what, where, and how much, you'll get newly listed homes matching your criteria sent to your inbox as they hit the market. This can give you a big leg up in your home search.

The first step in the home-buying process is getting pre-approved for a mortgage. Todd Davidson is an experienced mortgage broker and can help you get the best financing option for your home purchase. Not quite ready yet? Todd can help you put together a plan to get you there. Whether you're thinking a few months or a year or more if you want to buy a home, reach out to Todd and he can help. CLICK HERE to email Todd and set up a call to get the process started or just call him at 971-275-2465. 

Todd Davidson Headshot.JPG

Todd Davidson

Mortgage Broker

What is the Cost of Living in Lakewood Washington?

If you're exploring a move to Lakewood, Washington, or any place, the cost of living would be a significant factor in your decision-making. I calculated the REAL cost of living in Lakewood, Washington, by factoring in today's costs for housing (rent and own), utilities, food, transportation, healthcare, and other necessities to live. To live in Lakewood, Washington, and rent, you would need to make $44,000 a year. To live in Lakewood, Washington, and buy a home, you would need to make $72,000 a year. Rental amount is based on current low end cost of studio or one bedroom, purchase is based on recent low end sales of a three bedroom and monthly payment with 20% down.

Cost of Living

Renting and want to buy a home someday? Or even own currently and want to buy a new home. I've partnered with USAFE to provide a FREE digital financial assistant. In one place you can track and improve your credit, get help saving, budget, figure out payment, search properties, and when your ready, even get pre-approved for a mortgage. CLICK HERE to learn more and watch a video on USAFE and find out everything it can do for you!

Living in Lakewood Washington Tips/Info/Blog Posts

Helpful Tips for Moving to Oregon and Buying a Home







Top Neighborhoods in Lakewood Washington

Lakewood, Washington has several top neighborhoods that offer residents a great quality of life. Some of the top neighborhoods in Lakewood include:

  1. Oakbrook: Located in the southern part of Lakewood, Oakbrook is a beautiful, tree-lined neighborhood with a mix of single-family homes and townhouses. It has a small-town feel with a community park, golf course, and easy access to major highways.

  2. Lake Steilacoom: Situated around the lake with the same name, Lake Steilacoom is a desirable neighborhood with waterfront properties, parks, and a community center. Residents enjoy kayaking, fishing, and hiking on the trails around the lake.

  3. Tillicum: Tillicum is a diverse neighborhood located in the eastern part of Lakewood. It has a mix of single-family homes, apartments, and townhouses, and it is known for its affordable housing and easy access to amenities.

  4. Woodbrook: Woodbrook is located in the northern part of Lakewood, close to Joint Base Lewis-McChord. It has a mix of single-family homes, apartments, and townhouses, and it is known for its quiet streets and proximity to shopping and dining options.

  5. Springbrook: Springbrook is a well-established neighborhood in the western part of Lakewood, with a mix of single-family homes and townhouses. It has easy access to the Lakewood Towne Center, which offers a variety of shopping and dining options.

If moving to Lakewood, Washington, and you'd like to buy a home in one of these fabulous neighborhoods, CLICK HERE to sign up for LISTING ALERT to be the first to know when a home matching your criteria gets listed for sale in Lakewood, Washington.

unset at Fort Steilacoom Park, Near Lakewood Washington

20 Pros and Cons of Living in Lakewood Washington

Living in Lakewood Washington Pros

  1. Location: Lakewood is located in close proximity to several major cities, including Tacoma and Seattle.

  2. Natural beauty: The area is home to several lakes, parks, and forests, providing ample opportunities for outdoor recreation.

  3. Military presence: Lakewood is home to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, a major military installation that employs thousands of people and contributes to the local economy.

  4. Diversity: The city is known for its diverse population, with a mix of ethnicities and cultures.

  5. Cost of living: The cost of living in Lakewood is lower than many other cities in the area, including nearby Seattle.

  6. Small town feel: Despite its proximity to major cities, Lakewood still maintains a small town feel, with friendly locals and tight-knit communities.

  7. Education: Lakewood is home to several well-regarded public and private schools, including Clover Park Technical College.

  8. Arts and culture: The city is home to several museums, galleries, and theaters, providing a rich cultural experience.

  9. Healthcare: The area is home to several healthcare providers, including the Lakewood Multicare Clinic and St. Clare Hospital.

  10. Employment opportunities: There are several major employers in the area, including the military base, healthcare providers, and the Clover Park School District.

Living in Lakewood Washington Cons

  1. Traffic: Lakewood can experience heavy traffic during peak hours, particularly on Interstate 5.

  2. Crime: Lakewood has a higher crime rate than the national average, particularly in regards to property crimes.

  3. Cost of housing: While the cost of living is generally lower than other nearby cities, the cost of housing in Lakewood can be relatively high.

  4. Public transportation: The city's public transportation system is limited, with few options for commuters.

  5. Limited nightlife: Lakewood is a quieter city, with limited options for nightlife and entertainment.

  6. Weather: The area can experience frequent rain and overcast skies, particularly during the fall and winter months.

  7. Limited job market: While there are several major employers in the area, the job market can be competitive and limited in some industries.

  8. Limited dining options: While there are some great dining options in the area, there are fewer options than larger cities.

  9. Education funding: While there are good schools in the area, the Clover Park School District has faced funding challenges in the past.

  10. Crowded schools: Some of the schools in the area can be crowded, particularly in high-growth areas.

FAQs About Living in Lakewood Washington

What is Lakewood known for?

Lakewood, Washington is known for its beautiful parks and outdoor recreational opportunities. Fort Steilacoom Park, one of the largest parks in Lakewood, offers 340 acres of green space, including trails, sports fields, and a lake for fishing and boating. Another popular park is American Lake Park, which features a beach area, fishing pier, and picnic shelters.

What cities are nearby Lakewood?

Lakewood, Washington, is close to several other cities in the area. Some of the nearest cities to Lakewood include Tacoma, just a few miles away, and Olympia, about 25 miles to the south, and Seattle, 40 miles to the north. Other nearby cities include University Place, Steilacoom, DuPont, and Lacey. With its central location in Pierce County, Lakewood provides easy access to various urban and suburban communities in the region.

What is the weather like in Lakewood?

Living in Lakewood, Washington, you can expect mild weather throughout the year. In the winter months, the average high temperatures range from 44°F to 48°F, and the average low temperatures range from 34°F to 38°F. The city occasionally experiences light snowfall during the winter, but it is not common. Summers in Lakewood are mild, with average high temperatures ranging from 70°F to 77°F and occasional hot spells in the high 80s. The city receives around 46 inches of rain annually.


Does Lakewood Washington have good public schools?

Students in Lakewood, Washington, attend public school in the Clover Park School District. For school year 2022-23, ranks Clover Park School District #127 out of 252 school districts in the state of Washington, giving it a B- rating. The district has strong graduation rates and offers a variety of programs to meet the diverse needs and interests of its students. Families living in Lakewood, Washington, can feel confident that their children will receive a pretty average education attending school in the Clover Park School District.

Is Lakewood Washington safe?

Living in Lakewood, Washington, you'll find it a relatively safe place. Property crime rates in Lakewood are lower than the national average, and violent crime rates are significantly lower than the national average. According to, Lakewood has a crime rate lower than 61% of all US cities. With these statistics, if you're living in Lakewood, Washington, you should feel reasonably safe.

What is there to do living in Lakewood, Washington?

Living in Lakewood, Washington, there's always something to do. The city offers plenty of outdoor recreation opportunities, including American Lake, perfect for swimming, boating, and fishing. There are also plenty of parks and trails to explore, like the stunning Fort Steilacoom Park. The city also hosts various annual events, such as the SummerFEST celebration and the Lakewood Farmers Market. If you're in the mood for a day trip, Lakewood is only a short drive away from beautiful destinations like Mount Rainier National Park and the Olympic Peninsula. Whether you're looking for outdoor adventure or cultural experiences, there's plenty to keep you busy living in Lakewood, Washington!

Who are large employers in Lakewood, Washington?

If living in Lakewood, Washington, some of the top employers include: Joint Base Lewis-McChord, which is the largest employer in Pierce County and employs over 56,000 people, Clover Park School District, which employs over 3,000 people, Lakewood School District, which employs over 600 people, and Pierce College, which has a campus in Lakewood and employs over 400 people. Other notable employers in Lakewood include the city government, Lakewood Towne Center, and St. Clare Hospital.

I want to relocate to Lakewood.  How do I make it happen?

You've come to the right spot if you're looking to move to Lakewood, Washington.  There’s a lot of information on this website to help including some helpful links below. If you want to ask questions, try our Facebook Group > Moving to Washington  where we have broad group of locals to answer any question you might have. If you’re looking to buy a home in the Lakewood area, getting pre-approved for a mortgage should be your first step. For Mortgage Info, reach out to me. I would love to tell you more about what living in Lakewood, Washington, is like as well as help with your mortgage if you decide to purchase a home.

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