Las Vegas, Nevada, is one of the most exciting cities in the world. With world-class entertainment, casinos, and some of the best restaurants in the United States, there is never a shortage of things to do in “Sin City.”In addition to shopping, shows, gambling, dining, and outdoor adventures, residents also enjoy cheering their local teams—the Raiders of the National Football League and the Las Vegas Aces of the Women’s National Basketball Association. You can spend a day at the game or a night on the town, there’s never a reason to be bored here.
Las Vegas Economy and Job Opportunities
Las Vegas officially incorporated on May 15, 1905, when 110 acres of land were auctioned off by the railroad company who had purchased ground in order to expand the nation’s railroad system. Las Vegas became a railroad town, primarily because of the abundance of water available, which made it an ideal stop for passengers who were traveling from Southern California to Salt Lake City.
While dude ranches were popular in Vegas in the 1930s, it didn’t take long for gaming to become one of the most important aspects of the city’s economy. In fact, the first themed hotel and casino opened in 1941, and was quickly followed by three more over the next seven years.
Today, the city is known for its entertainment and gaming industries.
It’s not rare to walk down the famed Las Vegas Strip and see countless shows from some of the most recognized names in the world of entertainment. Additionally, there are countless casinos all around town that cater to gamblers of all experience levels.
While there are obviously multiple jobs within the entertainment and gaming industries, the sales industry is actually the most common employment field for residents, with food preparation, and office administration positions coming in second and third respectively.
Additionally, there are a number of tech startups that are establishing themselves here, operating out of co-working spaces which means you can connect with other entrepreneurs and network to help propel your startup forward.
Las Vegas Real Estate and Cost of living
The median list price for a single-family home is $540,000, while the median list price for a condominium is $245,000, with the average number of days on the market at 86 for homes and 100 for condominiums.
According to Altos Research, Las Vegas is in a strong sellers’ market as of December 2021.
The average rent for an 892 square-foot apartment is $1,341 according to Rent Cafe.
The kinds of homes you’ll find vary in architectural style, and usually include Mediterranean, Pueblo, Ranch, and Spanish-Inspired.
Short-term rentals are regulated here, and are only allowed in owner-occupied homes that have three or fewer bedrooms and are at least 660 feet away from another short-term rental.
High speed internet is available from CenturyLink, Cox, and HughesNet starting at $34.95 per month.
Utility costs like electricity, gas, water, sewer, and trash are generally low when compared to the rest of the country, according to Numbeo.
AreaVibes rates the overall cost of living score at 102, so just a bit over the national baseline of 100, and the city’s livability score at 70 on a scale of 0-100.
Las Vegas Food, Drink, and Entertainment
Las Vegas has tons of good restaurants all over town, from the comfort foods of Honey Salt, to the Taiwanese offerings at Every Grain, to the wildly popular Oyster Bar.
Las Vegas is also home to multiple coffee shops like Vesta Coffee Roasters and breweries such as Able Baker Brewing and Banger Brewing.
Some of the most iconic dining establishments in Las Vegas include Peppermill Las Vegas, Golden Steer Steakhouse Las Vegas, and Top of the World, famous for its varied drink menu and impressive offering of chilled or raw seafood.
Obviously, Las Vegas is world-renowned for the number of entertainment options available on the Las Vegas Strip. However, there are plenty of other nightlife options to consider. For instance, Chateau Nightclub and the Foundation Room are both wildly popular nightclubs in Las Vegas.
Additionally, there are plenty of bars and lounges, including The Commonwealth and The Chandelier Bar.
For moviegoers, Regal Red Rock IMAX and 4DX provides some of the best cinematic experiences anywhere in the country.
Obviously, if you’re considering a move to Las Vegas, it’s important that you know where to do your grocery shopping. Grocery stores like Albertsons, WinCo Foods, and Vons are easily accessible in every neighborhood.
There are plenty of other shopping options in Las Vegas. For instance, Las Vegas Premium Outlets (both north and south) provide more than 150 brand-name and designer stores at outlet prices.
Other shopping options in Las Vegas include The Forum Shops at Caesars Palace, The Grand Canal Shoppes, and Miracle Mile Shops.
Las Vegas Attractions and Things to Do
Most of the tourist attractions in Las Vegas revolve around The Strip and the various dinner shows and casinos that line one of the most famous streets in the United States.
However, Las Vegas has many other tourist attractions including the Fremont Street Experience, gondola rides at the Venetian Hotel, and helicopter rides over Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon.
There is also a vibrant art scene located on and around the Vegas Strip. For instance, the Bellagio Gallery partners with foundations and museums from around the world to present a wide variety of compelling art pieces. Past exhibits have included pieces from Warhol, Picasso, and Faberge.
The Arts Factory, located at the corner of Main Street and Charleston Boulevard, and The Martin Lawrence Gallery, situated in the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace are both incredible art galleries in their own rights.
If you’re a sports fan, Las Vegas is also home to the Las Vegas Raiders of the National Football League, the Vegas Golden Knights of the National Hockey League, and the Las Vegas Aces of the Women’s National Basketball Association.
In addition to those three teams, Las Vegas is also home to a large number of minor league and semi-pro teams, ensuring there is always something for sports lovers to enjoy.
Las Vegas is also home to a number of parks and trails. For example, the Peccole Ranch Walking Trail is a hit among those who want to go outside and enjoy a leisurely walk in the ample shade, while the Burkholder Trail and the Historic Railroad Trail both provide bicycling opportunities for riders of all experience levels.
Finally, there are plenty of family parks in Las Vegas, including Floyd Lamb Park and Centennial Hills Park, each of which provide a multitude of activities.
Las Vegas Transportation
Las Vegas is served by McCarran International Airport, which is also referred to as LAS. McCarran International Airport is incredibly easy to get in and out of, has numerous international nonstop flights, and is most noted for its wide variety of duty-free shops and the aviation museum found inside.
Getting around Las Vegas on public transportation is pretty easy, as there are plenty of options.
In addition to Uber, Lyft, and other ridesharing options, many people prefer the Las Vegas monorail that runs up and down the Vegas Strip. You can also take advantage of the strip trams, which run along only one side of the Strip, but are free. Finally, there are multiple bus services in and around Las Vegas, including Deuce, a double-decker bus, and SDX.
You won’t necessarily need a car living in Las Vegas, but if you have one, you’ll notice that parking varies in price and difficulty based on where you’re at in the city. On and around the strip, you can often find parking that ranges between $6 and $10 per hour, while there are plenty of free parking options elsewhere in the city.
Additionally, you’ll want to account for car insurance, which is around $2,640 per year according to TheZebra.com. That number is around $1,100 higher than the national average.
Las Vegas Schools
Las Vegas has numerous schools and universities that provide students with a variety of degree programs to choose from, ensuring that Las Vegas has another generation of well-educated professionals ready to lead the city into the future.
The public school system has been rated below average by Great Schools.
But there are also many highly regarded private schools to choose from, including Building Blocks Child Care, Kids R Kids #2 Child Care Center, and International Christian Academy.
You’ll also find numerous local homeschooling groups if you prefer to educate at home.
Las Vegas Community Groups
If you’re religious, you’ll find a vast array of churches and houses of worship in Las Vegas, including those that cater to members of the following faiths: Catholics, Protestants, Jewish, Muslims, Buddhists, and more.
Also, if you are a member of the LGBTQ community, you will find several resources in and around Las Vegas, including The LGBTQ Center of Southern Nevada, Henderson Equality Center, and Las Vegas TransPride.
Las Vegas also has numerous neighborhood and community organizations that you can become involved in, including the Las Vegas Rescue Mission, Vegas Roots Community Garden, and Spread the Word Nevada just to name a few.
Other good places to meet people as a newcomer are local Facebook groups and at Meetup.com.
Las Vegas Health and Wellness
As for Covid restrictions, Las Vegas is open for business without capacity limits.
The state of Nevada mandates that everyone wear a mask in public indoor settings, but as of Aug 16, all large indoor events with 4,000 or more attendees may show proof of vaccination as an exception to the indoor mask requirement.
These rules are always changing, so check with official sources before making plans for Vegas.
There are plenty of places where you can work on your personal fitness. Places such as Power Yoga + Pilates + Fitness, Kintsugi Yoga, and KILO CLUB provide great fitness options.
There are multiple world-class hospitals in Las Vegas, including Valley Hospital Medical Center, Summerlin Hospital Medical Center, and Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center. There are also several urgent care clinics, including Las Vegas Urgent Care and DispatchHealth Urgent Medical Care Las Vegas.
For elderly residents or those with extenuating health issues, there are multiple assisted living facilities in Las Vegas, including Avamere at Cheyenne, Aegis Living Las Vegas, Oakley Assisted Living, and Silver Sky at Deer Springs Assisted Living.
For pet lovers, there are several vet and kennel options in and around Las Vegas. These include Boca Park Animal Hospital, Pet Health Animal Hospital, and Just Like Home Doggie Hotel and Grooming.
Las Vegas Climate and Safety
Las Vegas’ weather is generally hot. Summertime temperatures in July average around 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Winters are generally mild, but temperatures do drop into the upper 30s.
Spring and fall are significantly milder, with temperatures that range anywhere between 50 and 80 degrees, depending on the month.
Because Las Vegas is in the desert, there is a myth that it’s always hot, but that’s simply not the case. December is the coldest month of the year, and even though snow is rare, temperatures often hover around freezing point, especially at night.
Unfortunately, Las Vegas does have a crime rate that is 17% higher than the national average.
Crime here is rated an F by AreaVibes, however, Las Vegas’ crime rate is lower than metropolitan areas that are of similar size. Property, theft and violent crimes are the top three categories.
To combat the problem, metro police in Las Vegas have recently started focusing more on The Strip, where many of the crimes committed take place.
Clark County officials indicate that around 34,397 people, or 1.8% of Las Vegas’ population is homeless, some living underground in the sewers. City leaders are working with local shelters and other outlets to help them get access to the resources they need, but not all of them want the help.
As for pests and predators to watch out for in Las Vegas, you’ll find Cicadas, Scorpions, Cockroaches, Ants, Spiders, Elm root borer, Bees, and Crickets. You also want to keep an eye out for mountain lions and Gila monsters if you venture outside the city.
Las Vegas Politics, Government, and Taxation
Las Vegas city government does have a bit of a reputation for some financial corruption, as reported by the Las Vegas Review Journal, which provided accounts of multiple city officials using campaign funds and taxpayer money to travel and visit expensive restaurants.
The city received a C from Data-Z.org regarding its overall fiscal state.
In the last presidential election, 53.7% of voters voted for the Democratic candidate while 44.3% of voters voted Republican. 2% of voters voted independent/third party.
Las Vegas’ sales tax is at 8.38%, making it one of the higher city sales taxes in the nation. However, Las Vegas has some of the lowest property taxes in the nation at 0.53% according to Smartasset.com.
Finally, according to CNBC, Las Vegas is considered one of the most business friendly cities in the nation, as there is no business income tax, personal income tax, or franchise tax.
Nevada does not have a state income tax, which is certainly a bonus.
Las Vegas’ infrastructure is generally considered very good, as is the case with most of Nevada.
The staffing of first responders is considered good, as is reflected in quick response times. For instance, the Clark County Fire Department has an average response time of around 7 minutes and 34 seconds according to Elite LV Medical Center’s website.
The Bottom Line
If you’re single and looking for a city with an exciting nightlife where you can meet plenty of new people… Las Vegas may be the right choice for you. But if you’re looking for somewhere quiet and slow-paced to call home, there may be better options elsewhere.
If you’re a couple without children and want a place that provides a healthy mix of culture and entertainment… it’s hard to beat the excitement of Las Vegas. However, if you’re concerned about crime and a rapidly growing population, you might want to keep looking.
If you have a family and want to raise your children in a thriving, diverse community with something always going on… Las Vegas may work for you. However, if you prefer a slower paced, laid-back community where you know everyone in town, you may want to consider another location like nearby suburbs Summerlin South, Spring Valley, or Henderson.
Where to live in America is a very personal choice, because what’s important to us may not be important to you.