Renters’ Guide to Allentown
Flanked by vast woods and lush greenery, and with the Lehigh River cutting through on the northeast, Allentown, Pennsylvania is a fine mix of local arts, stable employment, and stunning natural scenery. Add a rich local history and a thriving local economy, and you have the perfect place for wholesome families and aspiring entrepreneurs to call home. This is undoubtedly why Allentown, PA was recently ranked among the top 100 “Best Places for Businesses and Careers” by Forbes magazine.
Allentown, PA is the 2nd largest city in the Lehigh Valley (which also consists of Bethlehem and Easton), and Allentown, PA is the 224th largest city in the United States, though it’s still roughly 7 times smaller than Philadelphia, and 3 times smaller than Pittsburgh. Allentown, PA is 81 miles northeast of Harrisburg, PA (a cozy small city), 18 miles northeast of Easton (and its small town charm), 10 miles northeast of Bethlehem (and its terrific artistic community), and 82 miles west of Newark, NJ (and its great museums).
Occasionally, the weather in Allentown can become severe, and some parts of the city seem to be prone to frequent storms and flooding. Springs average 49°F and can be quite rainy at times. Summers are much drier and warmer, averaging 71°. Falls average 53°F and can be somewhat damp and windy. Winters tend to bring lots of snow and sometimes freezing rain, averaging 30°F.
Allentown, PA Demographics
- Total Population119,261
Female 57,889Male 61,372
- Median Age32.7
Cost of Living in Allentown, PA
The cost of living in Allentown, Pennsylvania is relatively more expensive when compared to most of the United States. An inexpensive meal in Allentown is $13.00 ($2.00 cheaper than the national average), and a cappuccino costs nearly $0.40 less than in the rest of the United States at $3.87. However, a pound of potatoes costs $1.34 ($0.20 more than most places), and the monthly utilities for a 915-square-foot apartment in Allentown costs $230, whereas the national average is only $148.89.
LANTA handles transportation in Allentown with 2 bus routes—the 220 line goes from Allentown to Bethlehem and Easton, and the 324 line will take you from Allentown all the way to the Lehigh Valley Airport. The average cost for a bus ticket in Allentown is $2.00, with monthly and annual passes available as well. Children under 5 and seniors ride free, students and the disabled receive a discounted price of $1.00. In addition, the Allentown Airport provides roundtrips all the way to Florida for around $400.00. The commute time is 28 minutes (3 minutes longer than the national average), and most people drive a car.
Living in Allentown, PA
Living in Allentown, PA gives you access to some of the world’s most beautiful parks, and it also gives you access to New York City, Philadelphia, and Jersey Shore. With this in mind, you may find a lack of entertainment to be one of the negatives of living in Allentown, PA (unless you are an artist, in which case there is plenty here for you to see and do).
Things to do in Allentown
Allentown may be family-oriented and therefore a bit on the quieter side, but there are still plenty of fun things to do in Allentown, PA. If you are looking for things to do with kids, then the Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom is a great place to start. Otherwise, the Splash Park is another exciting Allentown water park that also has tennis, gym facilities, and a huge pool. If you and your family can’t get enough sports, then check out the basketball or hockey games, and music concerts at the PPL Center, a source of stadium entertainment since 2014.
If it’s free things to do in Allentown that you’re after, then go to the Allentown public library, or be sure to visit Cedar Beach Park for plenty of playground areas and walking trails that the whole family can enjoy. For shopping, the “Allentown mall” (officially known as the South Mall) offers plenty of fantastic deals and sponsored local events (like the Pet Expo). Otherwise, Wegmans, Walmart and Home Depot have got you covered.
When you get hungry, there’s always the wide variety of traditional chain restaurants, but if you want to experience the best restaurants in Allentown, then you must go to the Chilis Sandwichera El Punto (a family-run eatery) or the Allentown Brew Works. Of course, there are also several fitness centers to work off those calories once you’re done!
Couples’ attractions include catching a flick at the local Carmike Cinemas, observing the trendy exhibits at the Allentown Art Museum, or attending the annual Great Allentown Fair at the Allentown Fairgrounds.
Employment and Economy
Allentown has excellent career opportunities in the healthcare industry, thanks to the Lehigh Valley Hospital and St Luke’s Hospital, as well as the Sacred Heart Hospital. Air Products and Chemicals, Talen Energy, The Morning Call, and the PPL Corporation are all headquartered in Allentown.
Allentown, PA Households
- Total Number of Households41,244
Family 26,470Non-family 14,774
Children 15,289No Children 25,955
- Average People Per Household2.76
- Median Household Income$36,930
- Median Housing Costs Per Month$933
Education in Allentown
The Allentown School District—which consists of the Roosevelt Elementary School, the Ritter Elementary School, the William Allen High School, and the Central Catholic Allentown High School—frequently benefits from ample federal funding, and additional buildings are expected soon.
Allentown, PA Education Statistics
- No High School7%
- Some High School50%
- Some College22%
- Associate Degree7%
- Bachelor Degree9%
- Graduate Degree4%
Tips for Renting in Allentown
If you are renting in Allentown and a new landlord acquires the property, know that they must honor the old lease. They may also offer to buy your lease, meaning they will pay for the remaining months in order for you to leave sooner. However, if there is a termination clause, then your lease is immediately nullified once the new landlord obtains the deed.
If you are moving to Allentown from NYC (New York City), then you might want to ditch the city accent as soon as possible. Otherwise, locals might seem a bit standoffish at first. Also, be prepared to enjoy a substantially shorter commute to work (though still on the long side by national standards).
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