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Moving to & Living in West Chester, PA

West Chester, PA [2023] | COMPLETE Moving to & Living in West Chester Guide

The small township of West Chester, PA is located about 36 miles west of Philadelphia and is found between other cities like Windon, Caswallen, and West Goshen. Residents living in West Chester enjoy the life of a college town as it has grown steadily over the years.

Known for being the government seat of Chester County, the unique architecture around West Chester has given it the nickname “Athens of Pennsylvania”. If you’re thinking about moving to West Chester, you’ll find there are many interesting facts you should know about this little town.

1. People of West Chester – Population & Demographics

In a city with a population of 19,698 people, West Chester is the definition of a college town. Out of the nearly 20,000 residents living in West Chester, more than 17,000 of them attend the local university. This is one of the main reasons why the median age in this area is less than 24 years old.

Having grown by over 2,600 people since the 1980s, West Chester demographics vary from about 76% Caucasian to 10% Hispanic or Latino and about 10% African American. The gender split in the West Chester population is 53.13% female and 46.85% is male.

2. Best Things to Do in West Chester

Although individuals relocating to West Chester will find themselves in a small area, you’ll find plenty of fun activities in and around the city. Longwood Gardens is easily one of the most popular things to do in West Chester, offering incredible views of gardens, fountains, and so much more. Visit their location to see beautiful greenhouses, learn about horticulture, or take photos with every changing season.

Longwood Gardens


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Longwood Gardens, 1001 Longwood Rd, Kennett Square, PA 19348

(610) 388-1000

Also among the top local attractions in West Chester, Stroud Preserve covers 571 acres of open green space for wildlife watching, beautiful nature, and room to play frisbee or other sports. It’s a top-rated place where locals love to spend time all year round.

Stroud Preserve


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Stroud Preserve, 454 N Creek Rd, West Chester, PA 19382

(610) 353-5587

One of the most fun things to do in West Chester is visit the American Helicopter Museum & Education Center. It is an educational experience where you can learn about aviation history, helicopters, and other rotary-wing aircraft while attending their scheduled tours. The museum is one of the best West Chester activities for families.

American Helicopter Museum & Education Center


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American Helicopter Museum & Education Center, 1220 American Blvd, West Chester, PA 19380

(610) 436-9600

3. Popular West Chester, PA Restaurants

Out of the many options for top-rated places to eat in West Chester, one of the most well-known is Limoncello Ristorante & Caterers. Visitors to this comfortable Italian restaurant will have access to a menu filled with pizza, pasta, flatbreads, and their choice of protein dishes. Its classic feel offers a laid-back atmosphere you are sure to enjoy.

Limoncello Ristorante & Caterers


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Limoncello Ristorante & Caterers, 9 N Walnut St, West Chester, PA 19380

(610) 436-6230

Are you a fan of Ramen? As one of the best restaurants in West Chester, the owners of Rai Rai Ramen & Hawaiian BBQ have got you covered with a full menu of it. Combining the flavors of Hawaii and Japan, this friendly eatery is definitely a place to check out after moving to West Chester.

Rai Rai Ramen & Hawaiian BBQ


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Rai Rai Ramen & Hawaiian BBQ, 124 E Market St, West Chester, PA 19382

(610) 738-8808

4. Cost of Living in West Chester

Compared to average expenses in the state of Pennsylvania, the cost of living in West Chester is about 28% higher. While local transportation costs are lower, residents relocating to West Chester should expect to pay more for food, utilities, healthcare, and real estate.

While only about 38% of locals living in West Chester own their living space, you will have plenty of options if you are looking to buy. A search for West Chester, PA homes for sale will point you to locations ranging from $275,000 to over $1 million. Having increased by 1.2% over the past year, the average price of a home in West Chester is $429,969.

If you prefer to lease your home or apartment, the average price of rent in West Chester is between $1,434 per month for a one-bedroom location and $1,953 per month for a three-bedroom place.

5. Safe West Chester Neighborhoods

Covering less than two square miles, communities in West Chester are among the safest in Pennsylvania. Residents enjoy easy access to all the amenities the area has to offer. The most popular neighborhoods in West Chester are:

A local neighborhood in West Chester, PAThis area is part of a much larger part of Pennsylvania that is known as West Chester Borough PUMA, which houses about 132,152 residents in total. Located near the southeast border of Chester County, zip codes in West Chester include 19380, 19382, and 19383. New residents switching to West Chester who want a new phone number will get either a 484 or 610 area code.

And with convenient shopping found all over town, people residing in West Chester have access to locations such as Carlino’s Specialty Foods, Rite Aid, Ace Hardware, Walgreens, GIANT Food Stores, and the Bradford Plaza Mall.

6. Local Schools in West Chester

Making up only 5.5% of the West Chester population, there are about 1,100 students in the area between the ages of 5 and 17 years old. These children attend schools within the West Chester Area School District, some of which have education programs ranked among the top in the state of Pennsylvania. A few of the most trusted West Chester schools include:

  • Westtown-Thornbury El School
  • Penn Wood El School
  • Stetson Middle School
  • J R Fugett Middle School
  • West Chester Henderson High School
  • West Chester East High School

As mentioned above, more than 17,000 students are enrolled at the West Chester University of Pennsylvania campus, making it the largest secondary school in the city.

7. Steady West Chester Jobs

As you might have guessed, the local university is also one of the largest employers in West Chester with nearly 1,000 professors, administrators, and additional staff members. Across the city, there is a median household income of about $55,313, which is slightly lower than the national average. A few of the other top employers around town offering jobs in West Chester are:

Some individuals living in the area commute from West Chester PA to Philadelphia about 36 miles away. While this may sound like a long drive, the trip is mostly traveled along the freeway, making it only about 40 minutes.

8. Weather in West Chester

Large changes take place throughout the year when it comes to West Chester weather. Summertime brings comfortable days between the mid-60s and mid-80s with only scattered showers on occasion. While winters dip below freezing with temperatures that reach between the mid-teens and the upper 30s along with about 22 inches of annual snowfall.

Winter weather in West Chester, PADepending on the time of year and what you’re in the mood for, you’ll find plenty of enjoyable outdoor activities to experience. This includes popular places such as Treehouse World and local parks like Hoopes Park and Everhart Park.

Tips for Moving to West Chester

  • This is a college town and it shows.
  • You’ll have close access to all the great restaurants and fun activities around town.
  • Enjoy the security of safe neighborhoods in West Chester.
  • There are jobs available beyond the local college.
  • Prepare for both warm and freezing weather.

Whether you’re a college student relocating to West Chester for school or a young family looking for your start, this is a great city worth a look. And if living in West Chester sounds like a good fit for you, our dependable Philadelphia movers are here to make the transition smooth and simple. Give Suburban Solutions a call today at (610) 314-6868 or complete the Request a Quote form for a free West Chester moving estimate!


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