There's just something about New Orleans that gets to you. My husband and I visited often and volunteered here after Hurricane Katrina—but being a resident is a totally different story. We had to get regular jobs and are often working on our home instead of partying on Bourbon Street. But even when you're adulting, New Orleans is a weird and wonderful—and very fun—place to live.
According to the Zumper National Rental Price Index, New Orleans ranked as the 21st most expensive city to rent in the U.S. with a one-bedroom apartment averaging $1,360 in April 2018. We bought our two-bedroom, two-bathroom shotgun-style home (the classic long and narrow NOLA style) after renting for many years in New York City; a desire for homeownership was one reason that we moved to New Orleans.
Ever wonder if someone has moved to New Orleans and regretted it? Do you think anyone ever has? Me neither. The decision to move to and live in New Orleans is a pretty easy one to make. The city has so much to offer in so many ways. It caters to the desires of millennials, students, families, working class, middle class, upper class … essentially, New Orleans can be the perfect fit for anyone. This is due to the diversity of the city’s people, as well as the diversity of the city’s areas. Two adjacent streets can often offer completely opposite spectrums of the city’s values and qualities.
New Orleans has some good public schools. But if you want your child to get the best education while going to a public school, you would have to get him or her tested. The 2 best public schools in New Orleans are Lusher and Ben Franklin. But you have to take a test to get into those 2 schools. And it is pretty hard to get into those 2 schools. Many people in NOLA send their children to Catholic Private Schools or just regular private schools. Private schools in NOLA have the BEST education, but it is extremely expensive. And plus it cost a lot for a decent home in New Orleans.
Mid-City is cool and probably a little less expensive then the LGD or Uptown. Metairie encompasses an enormous area (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Me…) which is most of unincorporated Jefferson Parish on the Eastbank. It's more like suburban USA anywhere, although there are parts that are quite charming.
New Orleans is known for being unlike any other city in the US, both culturally and aesthetically. With its heavy French influences, it has a far less ‘structured’ appearance than some US cities, giving it a great character. Lively and exciting, the city has a fantastic buzz and a relaxed, laid-back atmosphere, making it a great city to settle in.
On moving to New Orleans, expats may find the city is very easy to navigate on foot, and there are also some excellent transportation links to get around town. Expats living in the city will also get the chance to experience its famous Streetcars, which were featured in the Tennessee Williams play A Streetcar Named Desire. Thanks to its mostly flat land, it is also an excellent city for cycling.
New Orleans is famous internationally for its likeable, welcoming and friendly people, who go out of their way to help. There is a great sense of community in the city and residents are more than happy to help newcomers settle in – ask them about their city and for directions and you’re sure to get an enthusiastic and welcoming response.
There is so much to see, do and enjoy in New Orleans that it’s virtually impossible to pack everything into one day. You will want to start with a super southern breakfast to get the day off to a great start, and there is nowhere better than the 24 hour French Market stand known as Cafe Monde. Whether it’s just a coffee or one of its selection of beignets you will get the rush you need for a full day ahead.
The classical beauty of Jackson Square makes it a great place to hang out for a few hours, and the amount of locals you spot here is always a good sign. Flanked by the Mississippi, this French Quarter landmark is packed with colourful characters, buskers, and has that wonderful ‘good to be alive’ vibe. The 1850 House on the edge of the French Quarter is part of the Louisiana State Museum and is a perfectly recreation of how life was 175 years ago.
Mardi Gras World at the port gives a unique, behind the scenes look at what goes on behind one of the world’s greatest spectacles. The craft and artistry that goes into creating this jaw dropping extravaganza has to be seen to be believed.
The hedonistic haven that is the French Quarter is one of those places you keep being drawn back to time and time again. From the classiest joints in the city to the seediest dives, visiting the ‘Quarter’ is an experience not to be missed.
New Orleans isn't heaven. Good always comes with bad. In our case, it's almost proportionally distributed. There's tons of wonderful things about New Orleans and tons of negative things about New Orleans.
bus transportation is serviceable but not great. it might not be feasible depending on where you live. i live and work uptown so i usually bike it but i have a car too for rainy days and trips to metairie/kenner/westbank.
it's easy to get to know people. most people here are pretty outgoing. we have weekly bike rides where you can meet people, bars, saints tailgaiting, music, art shows... tons of stuff.
southern hospitality is what we call common courtesy down here. we say hello to strangers and ask how they're doing. i invite strangers to sit with me at crowded restaurants. i hold doors open for people. if you ask someone if you can bum a smoke from them it'll probably work. don't expect random people to invite you in for sweet tea or anything like that, though.
i can't really comment on the job situation. i work in the IT field and have been regularly employed for the last 6 years. (3 jobs)
ISPs are at&t and cox. they vary from neighborhood to neighborhood. try cox first and switch if it doesn't work. the variables are the number of subscribers on your node with cox and the cable distance from the telco with at&t.
the utility company is entergy. if there are alternatives i'm not aware of them.
New Orleans school system can be really confusing (surprise?). Charter schools became popular after Katrina because they are essentially independently run, while still receiving federal and state funding. Since so many Orleans Parish-run schools were failing, the state of Louisiana took over a few, and the rest are now charter schools. I believe that each charter system has its own application process. They are still public, so there is no tuition fee. They are criticized for not including all types of students, since they can choose which students they want.
I am not entirely sure about buses; it might be different for each school. I know I see buses at many different schools, so there is definitely something. I know at Ben Franklin, where I went to high school, there was a privately-run bus where parents had a pay a fee for service.
As far as private schools, Catholic schools are definitely the cheapest. I think elementary schools average at $5,000/year and high schools at $7,000.
If I've gotten anything wrong here, please correct me!
i don't recycle, but i think the service is available for a fee.
there are a lot of places where you don't want to be alone at night. don't wander out of the quarter/marigny area. stay out of treme. if you see something that looks like public housing you should probably turn around. IMO it's pretty easy to tell from the vibe of the neighborhood... but that might just be because i'm a native.