For being such a small state, Delaware has a lot to offer and a lot to love. While its pristine beaches and historic estates make Delaware a great vacation destination, “the first state” is also a great place to work, raise a family, and retire. Here are our top nine reasons to move to and celebrate living in Delaware.
1. Natural Beauty Abounds
Delaware is packed with natural beauty with 19 state parks that offer diverse topography. Rent a cabin at or bring a tent to one of the beautiful campgrounds or explore the maritime forest and beaches at Cape Henlopen State Park. According to Recreation News, “Delaware beaches have consistently ranked first for water quality among the 30 coastal states in the U.S.” Favorite water sports include kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, surfing, fishing, boating, jet skiing, canoeing, parasailing, and more. Beyond its beaches and campgrounds, Delaware is famous for its numerous parks and nature trails that have helped in its ranking as the third best state for cycling.
2. Tax Laws to Celebrate
To the practical mind, Delaware’s tax laws are just as attractive as its coastal views and quaint lighthouses. No matter which city you’re in, you won’t be hit with any sales tax. The only downside? The 0% sales tax may invite you to indulge in more frequent shopping sprees!
But wait, it gets better. Delaware also has no social security tax, no inheritance tax, no personal property taxes, and low property taxes (information courtesy of The Oldfather Group.) In fact, Delaware’s real estate property tax rates are the sixth-lowest of any state (and the District of Columbia) in the US, according to a 2019 WalletHub report.
3. Everything is Close to Delaware
Delaware itself contains many local points of interest like Cape Henlopen State Park, Delaware Seashore State Park, Winterthur Museum and Gardens, Brandywine Creek State Park, Hagley Museum and Library, and more. While there is no shortage of things to do right here in the First State, Delaware is also a great place to live because of its proximity to other major cities and cultural hubs. Catch a Broadway show in New York City in just 2.5 hours. Visit the history and culture of our nation’s capital in a 2-hour drive. Or simply be in Philadelphia for dinner in under an hour. The centrality of Delaware to so many booming cities (or beaches and mountains!) is truly unparalleled.
4. Housing is Affordable
Westhampton has officially SOLD OUT as of September 2021 but a beautiful new and exciting community is coming to Hockessin soon.
Introducing: Valley Grove. Learn all about this new community and sign up for the interest list to receive the latest news and updates at the community logo above!
According to Business Insider, the median home list price for all of America was $226,800 as of April 2019, and Delaware was very close to that average at $237,300. Pretty affordable when you consider a large number of employment opportunities and comfortable salary average in the state (see below). Plus, you can get a brand new construction home for just a small amount over the state's total average.
Homebuilders like Blenheim offer desirable communities like The Ponds at Bayberry, with housing starting at $279,900, The Village of Bayberry, with homes starting at $287,900, and Westhampton, with homes starting at $379,900. Explore each community to find the home that fits your budget and meets your needs.
5. Property Appreciation is on the Rise
On the whole, Delaware’s home values have been steadily on the rise for some time now. According to Zillow’s Delaware Home Index Value, house prices in Delaware have been pretty consistently increasing since 2013 and are estimated to rise another 0.3% by August 31st, 2020.
Buying now means your house will most likely continue to appreciate, meaning it’ll be easier for you to sell it for a profit if you do decide to move. Additionally, buying into a stable housing economy is always a smart move.
6. Plenty of Employment Opportunities
According to a recent article by Destination Scanner, Delaware offers plenty of job opportunities, with major employers like J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp., Citibank, Capital One Financial Corp., State of Delaware, University of Delaware, and E.I. Du Pont De Nemours & Co.
Moreover, Delaware jobs pay well compared to other states. TheStreet reports that the average 2019 income in the United States for a full-time wage or salary worker is approximately $46,800. The average salary for the state of Delaware is about $62,000. (Click here to see average salaries for Software Engineers, Project Managers, Administrative Assistants, Operations Managers, Office Managers, Executive Directors, and Financial Analysts in Delaware.)
7. Desirable Retirement Location
While working and raising a family in Delaware is certainly desirable, it is also a great place to retire. With highly ranked healthcare facilities (5 of the top 20 hospitals in the nation are within a 2.5-hour drive or less), close proximity to area shopping and attractions (include a large number of local golf courses), tax benefits for retirees, and one of the best 55 and better resort-style communities in the region, it is easy to see why Delaware is a top choice for retirees.
Bonus: Delaware’s affordable housing market and plentiful work opportunities make it easier for you to convince your children and grandchildren to live nearby!
8. History is Everywhere
Known as “The First State” for being the first state to ratify the U.S. Constitution, it is not surprising that Delaware is home to several historical attractions – some even date all the way back to the 1600s! From the beautiful replica of the Kalmar Nyckel, the ship that carried Delaware’s first settlers to shore (and is often docked in Historic Old New Castle), to the Old Swedes Church in Wilmington, which is one of the last remaining landmarks from the 1600s, there is plenty to explore for the history buff in you.
Only in Your State notes some of the more notable museums and landmarks, which include: Nemours Mansion and Gardens, Hagley Museum, Winterthur Museum and Gardens, Governor Ross Mansion, John Dickinson Plantation, WWII Military Base Fort Miles, a Mason Dixon marker, and more! No matter where you are in Delaware, you’ll be sure to encounter an important landmark or historic site.
9. There’s a Lot to Celebrate
When you live in Delaware there is a lot to celebrate, as displayed through its many festivals throughout the year. Some of Delaware’s more famous events include the Firefly Music Festival in late June, which is recognized as the premier music experience in the East Coast; the Delaware State Fair in mid-July, which was first held in 1920 and today draws over 300,000 people; and the twice-yearly NASCAR races at Dover International Speedway.
Other celebrations throughout the year include the Point-to-Point steeplechase horse races in May; the annual Clifford Brown Jazz Festival in June; the Middletown Olde-Tyme Peach Festival in July; the Delaware Saengerbund Oktoberfest in late September; the annual Sea Witch Festival in October and so much more!