Mississippi view from the sky

Is Mississippi a Good Place to Live? Pros and Cons

Is Mississippi a Good Place to Live?

Mississippi is a popular state for people to relocate to from all over the world. It is extremely popular for ethnic minorities, and people with religious beliefs. But is Mississippi the right state for you and your family? 

In this article we’ll help you answer the question, is Mississippi a good place to live? We go through several pros and cons to help you make the best decision.

Pros of Living in Mississippi

Let’s take a look at the positives of living in Mississippi.

1. Mississippi Cost of Living

Mississippi is the lowest cost of living state in the USA in 2022. Unlike Glendale CA, Mississippi has the cheapest property prices in the country. This means if you’re looking to move house and only have a small budget, Mississippi could be perfect for you and your family! You can also click here to find out more of the cheapest US states to live in.

If you’re looking to rent, the average cost of a house is $780 per month. The cost of buying a house is currently really cheap though, so if you can afford it, definitely consider this option.

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2. Calm, relaxed lifestyle

If you’re looking to slow down in life, Mississippi is a great state to move to. Living in a big city means you’re busy all the time, and there’s people everywhere! You might live in a large apartment block and your neighbors keep you up at night.

Mississippi also has some amazing greenery, and if you life in certain areas there’s some beautiful countryside. 97% of Mississippi is rural land, so there’s lots to explore!

3. Mississippi is a Highly Religious State

This is a pro that could be seen as a con to some people. Mississippi is one of the most religious states in the USA, with 77% of adults claiming to be “highly religious.” A vast amount of Mississippi citizens go to church on Sundays, which some possibly use as a way of socializing with the community.

This means that if you also consider yourself as a highly religious person, you will find a lot of like-minded people in Mississippi. However, you likely won’t be looked down upon if you do not go to church on Sundays.

4. Low Opioid Death Rate

In the USA, there’s currently an ongoing Opioid Crisis, but Mississippi ranks pretty low amongst other states for deaths caused by Opioid overdose. This could be due to a large majority of Opioid deaths in Mississippi are in the White population, with the African American population in the state being amongst the highest in the country.

5. Good Food!

Mississippi definitely isn’t the place to live if you’re looking to go on a diet. One of the most famous foods in the state is fried chicken, which tastes amazing! Mississippi is also known for its’ biscuits and collard greens.

The state also has great seafood, as Mississippi is on the Gulf Coast of Mexico. If you’re still wondering: is Mississippi a good place to live, hopefully these pros have shown you there’s lots of great aspects to living in the state.

6. Rich Cultural History

Mississippi is a state that is rich in cultural history and has notable contributions to American culture that are deeply embedded in the daily life of Mississippi residents.

Blues music, which was conceived and born in Mississippi, is famous throughout the world. You can experience this richness by going on the Mississippi Blues Trail which is a multiple historical marker that denoted significant sites within blues music history. 

Furthermore, Mississippi has a prominent literary tradition. William Faulkner and Eudora Welty were native sons of Mississippi brought into prominence through their writings. This led to many international recognition for Mississippi writers during the past few years.

7. Outdoor Recreation

Mississippi’s rich and varied terrain offers plentiful options for outdoor recreation. The state is renowned for its spectacular Gulf Coast that offers unrivaled opportunities for fishing, boating and, of course, sun-kissed sandy beaches.

Flowing through Mississippi are multiple rivers and tranquil lakes providing excellent fishing, canoeing and kayaking experiences. Further attractions include the bountiful parks and forests, with the vast expanse of De Soto National Forest boasting incredible hiking, camping and wildlife spotting prospects. For nature lovers, Mississippi serves as an incomparable playground.

8. Friendly Communities

Another attractive aspect of living in Mississippi is the presence of congenial and unified social networks throughout the locality. The compassionate natives here tend to show respect and friendliness towards outsiders, even bestowing them with courteous salutations and warm greetings.

This natural inclination of community spirit brings about a sense of cohesion and acceptance by its residents, which can facilitate a smoother transition of relocation to an unfamiliar place. From the remote rural towns to large cities such as Biloxi and Jackson; you are more likely to experience the advantageous kindness and hospitality when relocating to Mississippi. This makes Mississippi a brilliant place to live for black families.

Cons of Living in Mississippi

Here are the cons of living in Mississippi.

1. High Poverty Rate in Mississippi

Although Mississippi isn’t an expensive place to live, it has the highest poverty rates in the USA at almost 20%. Residents in the state also have a much lower average income compared to the rest of the US. This means you should make sure you’ve already secured a job in Mississippi before moving to the state.

2. Guns

Now depending on your beliefs, this could be a pro or a con to you. It is common for citizens in Mississippi to own a gun with the state ranking 7th in gun ownership. Over half of Mississippians own guns, which could possibly mean they feel they need to protect themselves. However, hunting is a popular sport in Mississippi, so this could be a reason as to why so many people own guns in this state.

3. Education Rankings

Mississippi typically doesn’t rank very high amongst other states when it comes to education. In 2019, Mississippi was ranked 33rd in higher education, and 45th out of the 50 states for Pre-kindergarten to 12th grade education. When the state is generalized, these results don’t look great.

However, if you look in the right cities/districts, you’ll find some great schools! If you move to a more rural area of Mississippi however, it is likely the education system is poor. If you have the finances, it may be a good option to look at sending your children to a private school in Mississippi, as these are highly rated.

The universities and colleges in Mississippi aren’t as poor as pre-K to 12th grade education, and are also more affordable compared to higher education in other states. You can pay less then $10,000 per year for a full-time class.

4. Weather

Mississippi is located in the Southern part of the US, and is one of the most humid parts of America. The heat isn’t the problem, it’s the humidity. Even at 85 degrees you can be sweating as soon as you walk out the door of your house! This is fairly common in the Summer months.

In Fall, Spring, and Winter, the weather is typically mild. It’s rare for the weather to go below freezing for a consecutive number of days.

Another issue in regards to the weather in Mississippi is tornadoes and hurricanes. Mississippi is a high-risk area in the US for tornadoes. However, it does not fall into the tornado alley.

It is also extremely unlikely for a tornado to go through one of the major Mississippi cities. Tornadoes can also be minor and short-lived, so do not do any damage.

5. Bugs & Mosquitoes

If you live in one of the wet land areas, or live close to a river or lake in Mississippi, then in the Summer season you’ll likely experience a lot of mosquitoes. You’ll need to wear insect repellent everyday to keep them from biting you. Issues with insects and wildlife is also a con of living in Ave Maria, Florida.

Mosquitoes tend to prefer people with type-O blood, so if this is you, make sure to wear plenty repellent. Getting severely bitten by mosquitoes can lead to health problems, so make sure to take this into consideration before moving to Mississippi.

6. Poor Road Maintenance

The roads in Mississippi are not maintained to the same standard that you see in other US states. In Texas, roads are repaved all the time, whereas in Mississippi it feels like they wait until the road can no longer be used until something is done about it.

This means when you’re driving in Mississippi, you must be careful to not drive over some deep potholes, as this could lead to severe damage to your vehicle.

7. Lack of Sports in Mississippi

If you’re a huge sports fan, and like attending professional sports games in the NFL or NBA, you will be disappointed. There are no pro sports teams in Mississippi. However, there are some minor league baseball teams, but that’s about as big as it gets. There is college football and college baseball too.

8. Limited Job Opportunities

While Mississippi has a quite affordable cost of living, the state suffers from inadequate job opportunities. Some sectors such as technology and engineering industries have few employment opportunities and it can be frustrating for individuals trained in these fields to search for suitable employment within their home state.

Also, Mississippi’s median household income markedly trails the national average, leading to an arguably diminished quality of life for some.

9. Health Care

Healthcare is another challenge for the state of Mississippi, which ranks low in the availability of essential health indicators such as rates of obesity and access to premium medical services. This can significantly affect individuals with pre-existing health conditions, or those who necessitate frequent visits to physicians.

Although there are commendable healthcare facilities within the state boundaries, attaining access to these facilities – specifically in rural regions – can be difficult.

10. Lack of Public Transportation

Public transportation in the Mississippi is somewhat limited, particularly outside the major cities which contain Jackson and Gulfport. For people who depend on public transit, this can be fairly problematic.

Although there are initiatives to enhance mass transit resources, the present absence of widespread networks implies that having a personal automobile is virtually essential for expediently traveling around Mississippi.

11. Fewer Amenities

In contrast to larger states or cities, Mississippi offers fewer amenities and complexities. This may very well be a contributing factor to Mississippi’s appeal with its tranquil pace of life; yet, for those who like a more energized metropolis-like environment, it might not be satisfying.

The number of shopping centers, restaurants, cultural institutions, and places of recreation are fewer in number than those found in larger states or cities.

12. Limited Diversity

While Mississippi has distinct cultural heritage, it does not have quite the level of diversity that is common in larger cities with more diversified cultures. While many Mississippians cherish and celebrate the state’s long-standing traditions and history, people who have a broader notion of what culture is and are looking for greater ethnocultural diversity may be somewhat disadvantaged by this one-dimensional view of culture.

13. Inadequate Infrastructure

Infrastructure issues, including those with public services and roads and bridges, exist in some areas of Mississippi. This may affect how people live their lives, especially in more rural or remote areas. This can be an important consideration for people who have become used to well-kept public infrastructure.

14. Limited Higher Education Opportunities

While universities such as the University of Mississippi and Mississippi State University are well known in Mississippi, rural areas are not always able to offer access to more advanced education. This is probably a significant disadvantage for many persons interested in pursuing more advanced studies or continuing education.

Is Jackson Mississippi a good place to live?

In comparison to other metro areas in the US, Jackson Mississippi is a very affordable place to live. Jackson residents pay less for utilities, transportation, and groceries, compared to other US cities.

If you’re looking for love, Jackson could be the perfect place for you, as over half of the residents are single.

Jackson Mississippi is one of the areas in the state where roads are least maintained. The local authority doesn’t seem to care about the standard of the roads, which can lead to some safety hazards when travelling. This also means you need to prepare to frequently pay for car repairs.

Jackson Mississippi is one of the most common areas in the state for tornadoes to occur! So definitely keep this in mind when living in the area.

Is Laurel Mississippi a good place to live?

Laurel Mississippi has a great cost of living rating, and also scores well in terms of livability. 2/3 Laurel residents own their home, and 1/3 rent their property. Two of the best elementary schools in the town are Glade Elementary, and West Jones Elementary School.

However, the crime rate in Laurel is higher than the national average. One of the most common crimes is larceny/theft.

Where is the best place to live in Mississippi

If you’re looking to move with your family to Mississippi, the recommended place to live is Long Beach. This is a beautiful community along the seaside, with low crime rates.

However, if you’re at retirement age, and looking for a quiet life, then Hattiesburg would be an ideal place to settle down. It’s an extremely welcoming city, with great healthcare, and housing.

So is Mississippi a Good Place to Live?

Hopefully our article and research helps you if you were wondering “is Mississippi is a good place to live?” If you’re looking at affordability, then it is a great state for you!

But maybe look somewhere else if you’re a sports fan, or looking for top ranking US schools to send your children to. If you’re a young adult, single, and looking for affordable living, Jackson Mississippi would be the perfect place for you to live.

If you’re looking for other places to live in the USA, check out the best places to live in Northern Arizona!

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