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Five Reasons to Buy a Home in Erie, Pennsylvania

Are you thinking about buying a home in Erie, Pennsylvania? Erie is a scenic and beautiful city known for Presque Isle State Park, friendly residents, and is rated as one of the best places to live in Pennsylvania. If you are looking for a small-town feel with big-city opportunities and enjoy spending summers outside by the lake, then moving to Erie will be perfect for you

From the low cost of living, to the many facets of Erie, PA weather, here is a chance to get to know our region at a glance!

Erie, Pennsylvania Realtor

Low Cost of Living

According to, the overall cost of living in Erie, Pennsylvania is about 11% lower than the national average. For housing, the city of Erie costs 34% less than the national average! Not only are you getting more “bang for your buck” on your home or investment property, but you’re also setting yourself up for more savings in the long run. Even if you’re just moving from Pittsburgh to Erie, the cost of living is 12% lower and the price of housing is 31% lower. Looking at the same two cities on Nerdwallet gives you similar results, along with 8% cheaper food costs in Erie. 

With remote work gaining in popularity post-COVID ( actually states that remote working tripled between 2019 and 2021), there could be opportunities for you to live in Erie while still working in major metropolitan markets. Say you found a remote job based out of Los Angeles. According to Forbes, Erie is 71% cheaper to live in than LA. Houses cost a staggering 72% less! Erie could be your perfect partner for remote jobs.

Simply put, you’d be hard-pressed to find a city this cheap and with this much to offer (read on for those offerings). The surrounding regions — like Millcreek, Fairview, and Summit — can run more expensive, but it’s still below big city prices. You can always browse my website for examples of what exactly you’re getting and at what price range. 

Erie, Pennsylvania
Mazza Vineyards

Convenient Location 

Erie is about 100 miles away each from Buffalo, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh, which means you can get the benefits of small-city living while major metropolitan areas are just a short drive away! We’re truly a melting pot of those three regions (you can tell by the equal amounts of Bills, Browns, and Steelers jerseys present on Sunday mornings).

If you’re a music fan, there are great venues in each direction. Between the Roxian in Pittsburgh (2 hours away), the Beachland Ballroom outside Cleveland (90 minutes), to Shea’s in Buffalo (again, 90 minutes away), it’s all at your fingertips. 

Shorter destinations also offer ample attractions. North East is a hub for wine lovers, sporting great spots like Arundel Cellars and Mazza Vineyards. Meanwhile, Edinboro has a charming lake and is a popular summer getaway. And we haven’t even talked about the city of Erie!

Access to Lake Erie and especially Presque Isle is the big highlight. Presque Isle has multiple beaches, long trails for running, biking, and rollerblading, and a must-see lighthouse. The city has easy parking (not a given for most cities!) and a growing number of restaurants, bars, and shops. If you drive down State Street, you’ll see the ongoing construction, the newly redone and gorgeous Warner Theatre sign, and a remodeled Perry Square area that features a new food hall and more.

Arundel Cellars (Top), Mount Pleasant (Bottom)

Affordable and Varied Recreation

The Erie, Pa weather features its fair share of snow. No reason to lie to you! But, if you can handle a couple of snow storms a winter, then you’re rewarded with all four seasons. Erie’s summers tend to be sunny, but not too hot, with an average high of 80 degrees in July. Not bad if you’re looking to control electricity costs from air conditioning. The fall is beautiful, and the winter....well, we get plenty of snow for skiing and snowboarding! We like to look at the positives here. 

The best way to show the variety of activities is to go season by season:

— Winter: Skiing and snowboarding at Mount Pleasant in Edinboro. Or, you could travel a little further and visit Peek’n Peak. This year, the Erie Downtown Partnership brought an ice skating rink to Perry Square. 

— Spring: Our winter lasts a little longer, so you have an extra long skiing season. If you can handle about 45-50 degrees, then other outdoor activities are a go. 

— Summer: The Presque Isle beaches, or some nice runs/walks on the Bayfront path.

— Fall: A great collection of hiking spots, including Asbury Woods Nature Center, the Erie Bluffs State Park, and much more. Or, you can check out Wooden Nickel Buffalo Farm’s famous corn mazes in late autumn. No matter where you choose to explore, you’ll be admiring some of our great fall colors. 

Northwest Pennsylvania is also home to the Millcreek Mall, which features over 100 stores for you to splurge at, including familiar names like Sephora, H&M, and Eddie Bauer. If you’re into games, check out Round1 USA at the mall, which offers bowling, billiards and beer in addition to their claw machines and arcade cabinets. For the thrill seekers out there, the Waldameer theme park is a must-visit.  The park has an attraction for everyone, ranging from spinning upside down 60 feet in the air on Chaos, to a merry-go-round for the kids. If you’re looking to cool down on a hot summer day, Waldameer is also home to a water park with wild slides and a 500,000-gallon wave pool. If you’re looking for some more grown-up fun, test your luck at the Presque Isle Downs and Casino.

History and Culture 

Erie became part of Pennsylvania in 1792, and the history behind this region is vast. Visit the Brig Niagara, a historically accurate battleship from the War of 1812, and the associated Erie Maritime Museum. The Hagan History Center on W. 6th St. is another must-see for history buffs. 

For those who love the arts, Erie is home to many galleries and theatre groups. For a classical music experience, try the Philharmonic at the Warner Theatre. If you like drama, the Erie Playhouse puts on a variety of shows for those of all ages. The Erie Art Museum has rotating exhibits and lists their overall collection at over 8,000 objects. Glass Growers Gallery is right next to the Art Museum and is another local favorite. The alternative art scene in Erie is strong and growing stronger. I’d recommend 10/20 Collective and the variety of recent murals that Erie Arts & Culture has placed around the city. It’s part of their Purposeful Placemaking initiative. 

Erie has always had a historical and cultural focus, and the city is always welcoming to those interested in learning more!

Places to eat in Erie PA

Erie Food Scene

Last, but not least, Erie has an excellent and varied food scene. While I won’t be naming every single restaurant that I love (perhaps that’s for another blog post), I can point you to the Erie Reader’s annual “Can’t Miss Dish” lists. The 2022 list features a sandwich from the always busy Federal Hill Smokehouse, the excellent sushi from samurai kitchen, and a couple of standouts from the new Flagship City Food Hall downtown. Personally, I’m a big fan of the Acai Bowl from Juice Jar, which is on their 2021 list.

We also have all the food delivery apps of a big city — Doordash, Uber Eats, etc. — but again at lower prices.

erie, PA

Making Erie Your Next Home

Whether you’re moving here for a new job, to be with family, or a fresh start, Erie has something for almost everyone. Buying a home is one of the most important purchases in a person's life. It's essential to find a REALTOR ® who can give you the information you need to make the best home-buying decision possible. Whether you're looking for niche neighborhood knowledge or in-depth marketing insights, there is an agent in Erie who can guide you through your entire home-buying journey.

Buying a home doesn't have to be riddled with stress. When you find the right agent, the journey can actually be enjoyable. If you're considering buying a home in beautiful Erie, Pennsylvania, reach out to me, Sarah Hordusky.

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