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Are you considering moving to Kentucky in 2023? If you enjoy rock climbing, hiking, camping, kayaking and offroad adventures, moving to Kentucky will be perfect for you.

Famous for being the horse capital of the world, Kentucky is home to about 450 horse farms as well as the world's largest thoroughbred auction house. If you enjoy horse riding and horse racing, moving to Kentucky will be a great idea.

Violent and property crime rates in the Commonwealth of Kentucky are well below the national average making the state suitable for raising a family.

If you’re considering moving to Kentucky and wondering if the state is the right one for you or not, we have all the information you need to know about the state. This will make it easier for you to make up your mind about moving to Kentucky.


Kentucky Demographics

A quick look at the population and other demographics of Kentucky.

Male vs Female Population of Kentucky 2021

Male vs Female Population by Age Groups in Kentucky 2021

Population distribution by Ethnicity in Kentucky 2021

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Quick facts to note before moving to Kentucky

  • The median annual income for Kentucky is $52,295
  • The poverty rate in Kentucky is 16.3. The U.S. average is 10.5%
  • The median home value in Kentucky $146,000
  • The average rental price for a home or apartment in Kentucky $944 / per month
  • The average hourly rate for hourly jobs in Kentucky 17.89 an hour
  • The cost of living in Kentucky is 83.6
  • Property and violent crimes rates in Kentucky are lower than the national average

What’s the population of Kentucky?

As of 2020, Kentucky’s population is 4,509,342 and it is the 26th most populous state in the US. Kentucky’s density is 110/sq mi and it ranks 21st in density among the US states.

How is the weather like in Kentucky?

Kentucky enjoys four distinct seasons, each with its virtues. The state has an average annual high of 87°F in summer and an average low of 23°F in winter. Precipitation in Kentucky falls evenly throughout the year, averaging 46 inches. Most of it is rain though there is the occasional snowfall in the higher elevations.

While summers are warm, they are not oppressively hot and humidity levels would be too high. Thunderstorms are common and can turn violent. Tornadoes also hit Kentucky.

How fast can you commute in Kentucky?

The average one-way commute in Kentucky takes 23.1 minutes which is shorter than the US average. Interestingly, residents in the largest cities in Kentucky spend less time commuting to the office. In Louisville, the typical travel time to work is about 23 minutes while in Lexington, the state’s second-largest city, the typical commute takes 20.9 minutes.

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Top 10 reasons people are moving to Kentucky

Every year, lots of families and other people move to Kentucky for several reasons. While it’s not practically possible to figure out all the reasons people are moving to Kentucky, we’ve made a list of the notable reasons to give you an idea of why people are moving to the state.

Tip: While moving the home, safety of your belongings is the priority and you need a trustworthy mover at your side. Know the top-rated moving companies in Kentucky.

  • Kentucky has a low cost of living

    Kentucky has about a 21% cheaper cost of living than any other state with a 90 cost of living index. Housing, transportation, utilities, and healthcare are more affordable in Kentucky than in the neighboring states. The median home cost is $145,230 while the national median cost is $231,200.

  • Kentucky homes are affordable

    A studio apartment in Kentucky costs $536 a month while the average rent for a 1-bedroom is $601. You can rent a 2-bedroom apartment for $760 and a 3-bedroom house for $1,028. As the median home value in Kentucky is $145,230, much lower than the national average, up to 65% of the residents in the state own a house.

  • Kentuckians are friendly and hospitable

    Kentuckians are warm and generous, usually quick to help someone out, be it a stranger walking with a gas can or an elderly person that needs a lawn cut. Even strangers removing their hats when seeing an unreal procession is a common thing in the state.

  • Enjoy locally grown foods in almost all restaurants

    Kentucky is a farmland state and it cultivates almost everything. And you’ll be surprised to know that almost every restaurant serves locally grown food. The best way to relish a local cuisine is to pull a chair at the next restaurant.

  • You’ll enjoy all four seasons including derby season

    With a humid subtropical climate, Kentucky is mild and moderate. There are plenty of sunshine and state experiences in all four distinct seasons, with warm summers and moderately cold winters. Extreme cold winters are rare and it mildly rains in winter.

  • Kentucky’s proximity to other big cities around including Nashville, Cincinnati etc

    The proximity to big cities including Nashville and Cincinnati plays a major role in the state’s business climate. In addition, it also boosts up job opportunities for state residents.

  • Kentucky has a beautiful and unique geographical feature

    With moonshine, bourbon, bluegrass music, and acres and acres of gorgeous farmland, Kentucky is a state drenched in scenic beauty and takes pride in its serene landscapes.

  • Enjoy lots of local events and festivals

    Kentucky is a great place to party. And the state hosts unlimited events and festivals annually to rev up the spirits. Here is a list of some of the popular festivals in Kentucky.

    • Kentucky Derby Festiva
    • MainStrasse Village Oktoberfest
    • The St. James Court Art Show
    • International Bar-B-Q Festival
    • WorldFest
    • IdeaFestival
    • Highland Renaissance Fair
    • Lebowski Fest
    • Great American Brass Band Festival
    • Garvin Gate Blues Festival
    • Kentucky Bourbon Festival
    • Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event
  • Kentucky’s world-famous Bourbon Trail

    The world’s 95% of bourbon comes from Kentucky, especially in Bourbon County and there is no better way to relish it than to take a trail through the best distilleries in the state. The trail is not just limited to sipping the best-brewed bourbon but it also includes knowing the history and preparation of each brand.

  • Kentucky great outdoors are remarkable

    Kentucky is about inspiring outdoors and unbridled adventure. Here you’ll find hikes and horseback rides on rolling hills of the bluegrass. Rock formations and mountains are waiting for adventure seekers. And there are wild rivers and lakes to explore.

    Here are some of the best outdoors to explore in Kentucky

    • Boone Creek Outdoors
    • Carter Caves State Resort Park
    • Dog Slaughter Falls
    • The Appalachians
    • Breaks Interstate Park
    • Fairmount Falls
    • Gallatin County
    • Kentucky Lake
    • George Rogers Clark Memorial Bridge
    • Mammoth Cave
    • Perryville
    • Big South Fork National River

Pros and cons of moving to Kentucky

Kentucky or the Bluegrass State is famous for breeding horses, tobacco farms, fine bourbon and the Kentucky Derby.

There is a spectacular collection of natural attractions and parks with mysterious forests, fresh lakes, magnificent waterfalls, and caves. Fair enough! But do these factors make Kentucky the right place to move in? Before you take the final decision, weigh the honest pros and cons of living in Kentucky.

We’ve evaluated the pros and cons of living in Kentucky to help you make the right decision.

Pros of living in Kentucky
  • Kentucky is home to a robust workforce
  • Kentucky provides you with an excellent centralized location
  • The tax code is beneficial for most households in Kentucky
  • Housing costs in Kentucky are relatively affordable
  • You’ll have access to plenty of outdoor adventures when living in Kentucky
  • There are numerous hunting seasons to enjoy in Kentucky
  • You will get to enjoy the rivalry between Louisville and Kentucky
  • Kentucky makes some world-class bourbon.
  • Kentucky and hot browns are the perfect combination
  • You’ll get to enjoy five seasons every year when living in Kentucky
Cons of living in Kentucky
  • Getting to know the language of Kentucky can be a challenge
  • The educational system needs improvement
  • You’re going to need to learn the barbecue differences in the state
  • The weather might be nice, but it can also be frightening
  • Hunting season equates to more vehicle-animal accidents.
  • Kentucky’s income tax rate is a flat 5% for everyone.
  • Retirees experienced a reduction in their exemption.
  • The cities in Kentucky have pollution issues that you’ll want to consider.
  • Many people tend to group together based on their ethnicity.

Where are the best places to live in Kentucky?

If you’re moving to Kentucky, you’d like to live in the best places in the state. To help you put the right foot forward when you start searching for a home in the right neighborhood, we’ve made a list of the ten best places to live in Kentucky.

If you're considering moving to Arizona, living in the best places in the state should be among your top priority.

So, we've compiled relevant data about the ten best places to live in Arizona to help you get started.

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Home Value
1 Fort Thomas 16,313 3.2% $226,300
2 Edgewood 8,723 2.6% $222,300
3 Villa Hills 7,410 4.7% $220,500
4 Fort Mitchell 8,237 0.4% $258,500
5 Wilmore 6,299 2.4% $158,900
6 Fort Wright 5,724 1.9% $195,800
7 Cold Spring 6,319 2.9% $195,600
8 Bellevue 5,828 3.6% $130,900
9 Jeffersontown 28,178 3.6% $176,000
10 Douglass Hills 5,702 3.2% $244,700


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How to move to Kentucky from any state

Moving to Kentucky from any state is easy. All you have to do is hire a professional long-distance moving company to help you relocate. But where can you find such movers? Request for free moving quotes and you’ll get free multiple quotes from reputable moving companies near you.

If you’re wondering how much your moving to Kentucky will cost, you can use this free moving cost calculator to figure out your moving cost. This will make it easier for you to come up with a realistic moving budget for moving to Kentucky.

Kentucky Cities Moving Guides

What’s the cost of living in Kentucky?

The cost of living in Kentucky is 83.6. The United States average is 100. This means that the cost of living in Kentucky is 16.4% lower than the national average. This is one of the key things you should take note of if you’re moving to Kentucky.

What’s the average home rental cost in Kentucky?

Moving to Kentucky could mean renting a home or an apartment in the state. The average cost of renting a home or an apartment in Kentucky is $950 per month.

Here’s a simple breakdown of Kentucky’s rental cost:

  • Average cost of a Kentucky Studio Apartment is $536. The U.S. average is $821
  • Average cost of a Kentucky 1 Bedroom is $601. The U.S. average is $930
  • Average cost of a Kentucky 2 Bedroom is $760. The U.S. average is $1,148
  • Average cost of a Kentucky 3 Bedroom is $1,028. The U.S. average is $1,537
  • Average cost of a Kentucky 4 Bedroom is $1,190. The U.S. average is $1791

What’s the median home value in Kentucky?

The median home value in Kentucky is $145,230. If you’re considering moving to Kentucky, the cost of buying a home in the state is lower than the United States average. Here’s a simple analysis of Kentucky’s real estate market:

  • Up to 65% of Kentucky residents are homeowners
  • About 35% of Kentucky residents are renters
  • 12.5% of homes in Kentucky are available to rent
  • 67.1% of homes in Kentucky are single-family homes
  • 2.5% of homes in Kentucky are townhomes
  • 7.4% of homes in Kentucky are small apt. building
  • 10.9% of homes in Kentucky Apt. complexes
  • 12.0% of homes in Kentucky are mobiles homes

Median House Price in Kentucky vs USA 2021

Median Rent Price in Kentucky vs USA 2021

Cost of Living by Categories in Kentucky vs USA 2021

Kentucky Job Market

Your chances of getting a job if you move to Kentucky is fairly high. The unemployment rate in the state is below 5 percent.

10 largest industries in Kentucky

Kentucky is home to 54 fortune 500 companies that have always been on the list since the first list was released in 1955. The state is home to several large industries powering its economy. Since you’re considering moving to Kentucky, here’s a list of the ten largest industries in the state:

  • Aggrotech
  • Automotive
  • Manufacturing
  • Aerospace
  • Primary metals
  • Food and beverage
  • Logistics
  • Chemical
  • Plastics and rubber
  • Healthcare

What are the top career options in Kentucky?

Moving to Kentucky could mean getting one of the fastest growing jobs in the state. Here’s a list of the fastest growing jobs in Kentucky, according to Zippia:

Rank Job Title Growth % Average Wage Jobs in 2024
1 Home Health Aid 159.5% $25,710 6,620
2 Physical Therapist Assistant 152.2% $54,060 2,450
3 Operations Analyst 149.4% $73,290 2,390
4 Physical Therapy Aide 149.2% $24,410 1,000
5 Physical Therapist 147.2% $83,270 4,150
6 Certified Nursing Assistant 146.1% $25,160 37,180
7 Occupational Therapist 145.7% $80,110 2,710
8 Tour Guide 144.4% $23,740 3,120
9 Diagnostic Medical Sonographer 143.5% $62,740 1,320
10 Nurse Practitioner 143.3% $94,790 3,510

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What’s the average salary and income in Kentucky?

Your average salary and income in Kentucky will depend on several factors, including the kind of job you do and who your employers are. Below is a simple analysis of the average salary and income of people living in Kentucky. This data is crucial since you’re considering moving to Kentucky.

  • The median annual income of households in Kentucky is $50,247. The U.S. median is $61,937
  • The average annual pay for the Hourly Rate jobs category in Kentucky is $37,205 a year
  • The average weekly pay for hourly jobs in Kentucky is $715/week
  • The average monthly pay for hourly rate jobs in Kentucky is $3,100/month
  • The average hourly rates for hourly jobs in Kentucky are $17.89 an hour

What’s the unemployment rate in Kentucky?

How fast can you get a job if you’re moving to Kentucky? Here’s a simple analysis of Kentucky’s job market.

  • Unemployment rate in Kentucky is 5.10%. The U.S. average – 3.70%
  • Recent job growth in Kentucky is 1.32%. The U.S. average is - 1.59%
  • Future job growth in Kentucky is 34.83%. The US average is 33.51%

Biggest companies in Kentucky

After moving to Kentucky, you may decide to work with some of the largest employers in the state. To help you figure out who they are easily, we’ve listed ten largest employers in Kentucky, including their names, city and number of employees. Here’s the list below:

Rank Company City Employees
1 Yum! Brands Louisville 90,000
2 Texas Roadhouse Louisville 56,300
3 Humana Louisville 41,146
4 Kindred Healthcare Louisville 38,300
5 Grupo Antolin Hopkinsville 28,000
6 Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America Erlanger 623,307
7 Papa John’s International Louisville 23,100
8 INOAC USA Bardstown 20,000
9 Houchens Industries Bowling Green 16,000
10 Almost Family Louisville 15,500

Number of Households by Income Level in Kentucky

Median Income in Kentucky vs USA

Unemployment Rate in Kentucky vs USA

How much will you be paying in taxes in Kentucky?

Sales and property taxes in Kentucky are below the United States average while the state income tax is just about the national average. This makes the state tax friendly if you’re considering moving to Kentucky.

  • The state income tax in Kentucky is 5.00%
  • Kentucky local income taxes is 0.01% - 2.50%
  • Sales tax in Kentucky is 6.00%
  • The average effective rate of Kentucky property tax is 0.86%
  • Gas tax in Kentucky is 26 cents per gallon of regular gasoline, and 23 cents per gallon of diesel
  • The average property tax in Kentucky is $1,120 annually
  • Kentucky imposes taxes on inheritances

What is Kentucky most known for?

Kentucky is known for many reasons. While it’s impossible to list everything, the state is known for, we’ve made a list of some of the most notable ones. Since you’re considering moving to Kentucky, here’s a list of the key things the state is known for:

  • KFC

    Kentucky Fried Chicken or KFC is the world’s second-largest fast-food chain with a presence in over 150 countries worldwide. Started in North Corbin, Kentucky, it was one of the first American fast-food chains to expand internationally.

  • Horse farms in the bluegrass

    Kentucky is famous for thoroughbred racehorse breeding and is home to some of the best horse stud farms in the US. Visiting the horse farms in bluegrass is the best way to learn about horse racing and breeding and meeting up with some of the best horse breeds.

  • Horse racing

    Do not miss the opportunity to catch up with the best horse racing events in Kentucky as the state hosts some big events at the best racecourses in the country.

    Here is a list of some of the best horse racing events in Kentucky

    • Vinery Racing Spiral Stakes
    • Kentucky Derby
    • Blue Grass Stakes
    • Kentucky Oaks
    • Kentucky Cup Day of Champions
  • Big, outrageous hats for good luck

    Kentucky Debris is famous for big outrageous hats just like the horses. A style statement by ladies since the 1960s, the hats have gotten bigger and more colorful since then.

  • It’s the home of Bourbon Whiskey

    Bourbon Whiskey is primarily made from corn and legally cannot be prepared outside the US. It must have 51% of corn content and can be diverse in flavor profile, typically characterized by vanilla, oak, caramel, and spice. About 95% of bourbon whisky is prepared in Kentucky.

  • The home of the legendary Muhammad Ali

    Mohammad Ali, the legendary American professional boxer and activist was born in Kentucky. Mohammad Ali Center in downtown Louisville is a museum dedicated to his life and displays his accomplishments.

  • UPS Airlines

    UPS Airlines is a Louisville-based cargo airline, the fourth-largest cargo airline in the world. Launched in 1988, it flies to 815 destinations worldwide and has a fleet size of 283.

  • Coal mining

    Coal is a major natural resource in Kentucky and the state has more than 442 operating coal mines employing about 4,000 coal miners.

  • Health and well-being in cities like Louisville

    The healthcare system in Kentucky is impressive and this is highly visible in major cities, including Louisville, where some of the best hospitals in the US are located.

    Kentucky Health Collaborative strives to raise the health standards in the state by reducing the cost of care through better operational efficiencies.

    Here is the list of best hospitals in Louisville

    • Baptist Health Louisville
    • Norton Hospital
    • UofL Health-Jewish Hospital
    • Brook at Dupont Hospital
    • Brook Hospital-KMI
    • Central State Hospital-Louisville
    • Kindred Hospital-Louisville
    • Norton Children’s Hospital
    • University of Louisville Hospital
  • The Kentucky Derby and all the Derby festivities

    An annual horse race in Louisville, the Kentucky Derby is always on the first Saturday in May. The 1.5-mile race was first held in 1875 and is now considered one of the prominent events in Kentucky.

  • Beautiful landscape with rolling hills, green pastures, wooded areas

    Never-ending prairies, bluegrass swaying, and stunning features including waterfalls, caves, and natural bridges define the portrait of Kentucky. Unlimited scenic towns complemented with lakes, rivers, and old buildings it a postcard state worth exploring.

    Some of the enticing nature attractions in Kentucky include

    • Red River Gorge
    • Churchill Downs
    • Cumberland Gap National Historical Park
    • Lake Barkley
    • Berea
    • Daniel Boone National Forest
    • Dale Hollow Lake
    • The Land Between the Lakes
  • Delicious food both country, southern cuisine

    Like many southern states, Kentucky is famous for its cuisines, especially fried catfish, cornbread, hushpuppies, and barbeque. But the list of cuisine doesn’t end here. There is a lot more to relish.

    Here are a few traditional Kentucky dishes to explore:

    • Kentucky Derby Pie
    • Kentucky Benedictine Spread or Dip
    • Southern Wilted Lettuce (Kilt Lettuce)
    • Kentucky Bread Pudding With Bourbon Sauce
    • Bourbon Balls
    • Owensboro Mutton Barbecue
    • Burgoo
    • Kentucky Butter Cake
    • The Mint Julep
  • Daniel Boone National Forest

    The 708,000-acre Daniel Boone National Park is home to a wide range of animals and plant species and is also a destination for nature lovers to explore. Spread over 21 Kentucky counties, the park is a major source of clean and water in the state.

  • Abraham Lincoln Birthplace National Historic Park

    A historic park preserving two separate farm sites in LaRue County, Kentucky, where Abraham Lincoln was born and lived early in his childhood, it has a memorial museum, theater, and bookstore.

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How is the Kentucky School System?

Kentucky is home to some of the Elementry, Middle, High Schools & best universities and colleges in America. Since you’re considering moving to Kentucky, here’s a list of the best higher institutions in the state and their locations:

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

High salaries, low taxes, a pleasant climate, affordable homes, and abundant outdoor spaces wait for you in Kentucky. It’s highly urbanized, which means more jobs. If these factors excite you, Kentucky is a good state for you to move to.

Before you pack your bags for Kentucky, you need to know that the state is highly urbanized and has ample job opportunities. The food scene is rich, the cost of living is minimal, and while the salaries are higher, taxes are lower. However, the population is not diverse, and the climate is extreme.

Kentucky, despite its booming economy, is not diverse in population, and the weather here is extreme. A big impact of urbanization in Kentucky is high pollution. Wildlife can also be a nuisance at times during your stay in Kentucky.

Air and water pollution seriously impact life in Kentucky. In addition, bears and deer often cause serious accidents on Kentucky roads, which is another impact of severe urbanization. You also need to know that the crime rate is extremely high here.

A big reason for people moving out of Kentucky is air and water pollution. Despite the tall claims about the booming economy, jobs are not as plentiful as you expect. In addition, safety is also a major concern in the state.

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