What is it Like Living in Pittsburgh?

Pittsburgh is one of the best places to live in the United States. Yes, you read that right. It was voted America's third most liveable city in 2021. The quality of life for residents in Pittsburgh is high in relation to the cost of living. There are several reasons for this. Pittsburgh has a rich culture and history, education is strong and healthcare is accessible and affordable. Additionally, it's easy to find an affordable apartment for rent in Pittsburgh.

Historically, Pittsburgh was famous for its steel mills. Even their football team, the Pittsburgh Steelers, was named after these mills. However, the city's reputation has changed in recent years, with Pittsburgh being voted one of the top ten cities in America for young professionals. It is also ranked the twenty third best city for families in the United States, out of a hundred and fifty major American cities.

Affordability and Cost of Living in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh is one of few cities that have managed to strike a balance between the cost of living and quality of life. Compared to other major metropolises, Pittsburgh is very affordable. In fact, Pittsburgh is 20% less expensive than New York. The average one-bedroom apartment for rent in Pittsburgh goes for less than $1000 per month. Two-bedroom and three-bedroom apartments for rent tend to cost about $1400 - $1600 per month on average. This may seem quite expensive, but it is low when compared to other cities like New York City and Chicago. It's also quite low when compared to the average salary in Pittsburgh. The average salary in Pittsburgh is $68k annually, with an income tax rate of only 3%. Most major cities in the United States have tax rates as high as 12%.


For many, especially families, affordable healthcare is a priority that can be difficult to find. The state of Pennsylvania has some of the best healthcare in the country, and Pittsburgh is right at the centre of it all. UPMC Presbyterian Shadyside Hospital was ranked as the second-best hospital in the state. It was also nationally ranked as the top hospital in ten different specialties. A typical doctor's visit in the city ranges from $50 - $150 without medical insurance.

It's also worth noting that Pittsburgh is one of the only cities that has acknowledged barriers to healthcare for low-income and racialized people, and is actively trying to bridge the gap with action-based programs. Families with many children or complex needs may be interested in finding an apartment for rent near UMPC hospital. Family-sized apartments for rent in this area actually rent at below Pittsburgh's typical price threshold.


Schooling is an important part of Pittsburgh's identity. They are one of the most educated cities in the country, with over 93% of its residents holding a high school degree, and nearly half holding a Bachelor's degree or beyond. So, it's no surprise that Pittsburgh has a wide variety of choice in academic institutions. Parents have a lot of choice in the type of education they want their children to receive.

In fact, there are 104 private schools and 150 public schools, including K - 8 and high schools in the city of Pittsburgh alone. There isn't a truly “best” school either, as academics rank quite highly across all schools, and curriculum is focused on providing the best education to match students' needs. Many school services and extracurriculars are very local to the school campuses themselves, so finding nearby apartment rentals becomes extra important to ensure that children get the most out of their education.

The strength of Pittsburgh's education doesn't just stop at the high school level though, Pittsburgh is also home to four universities, two of which rank highly among the top one hundred colleges and universities in the United States. Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh University, Point Park University and Duquesne University are all located in Pittsburgh. Commuting can be an extra burden for many university students, so finding an apartments for rent close to campus is essential. With ApartmentLove's map feature, it's easy to spot Pittsburgh apartments for rent in the area you want.

Food, Arts and Culture

Pittsburgh might be one of the country's most underrated cultural centres. Its arts and food scenes are blooming, with a particular focus on breweries. The city has over forty breweries to choose from! The two most recommended brewers are Southern Tier Brewery and Allegheny City Brewery. Allegheny City is also dog-friendly.

Other notable and important landmarks include the Andy Warhol Museum, Rivers of Steel Boat Tours, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Kennywood Park and the Senator John Heinz History Center. Recommended for locals and tourists alike, these attractions offer endless knowledge and valuable insight into the history, growth and development of Pittsburgh. They are also suitable for anyone: families looking for something to do with the kids, students looking for a little extra enrichment, a fun girls or guys night out, or even just a quiet solo adventure. Check attraction websites for student and family discounts as well!

Apartment rentals near attractions, especially breweries are popular. Residents say that living near any one of Pittsburgh's breweries provides a greater sense of community. This is especially true for young people, who are the lifeblood of Pittsburgh's brewery scene.

ApartmentLove | Apartments for rent in Pittsburgh, PA

At ApartmentLove, we are committed to helping everyone find the feeling of home. With thousands of listings available across the United States and Canada, there is an apartment rental for every need and budget. Whether you're looking in Shadyside or the Strip District, we can help you find the perfect apartment for rent in Pittsburgh, PA. Browse our listings today!

Published: November 09, 2022