What's it like to live in Cincinnati, OH?

Jessica Esemplare

Profile written by local expert:

Jessica Esemplare

Although Cincinnati is often perceived as a sleepy Midwestern metro area, residents benefit from a wealth of amenities, including museums, professional sports teams and a wide selection of restaurants.

Families are drawn to Cincinnati for its excellent public and private schools, and its large number of Montessori schools. Plus, Fortune 500 companies bring in national and international talent.

But Cincinnati is hardly a place that's all work and no play. Locals love a good party, be it for the first day of baseball season or in honor of the city's German heritage. Even when the event calendar is empty, residents have plenty of ways to stay busy, from visiting an array of museums to noshing on the region's famous chili. 


U.S. News analyzed 125 metro areas in the United States to find the best places to live based on quality of life and the job market in each metro area, as well as the value of living there and people's desire to live there.

Cincinnati, Ohio is ranked:

#49 in Best Places to Live

#54 in Best Places to Retire




Best Places to Live

  • Desirability
  • Value
  • Job Market
  • Quality of Life
  • Net Migration

Read how we rank places

Cincinnati, OH Quick Stats

  • 2,146,410

    Metro Population

  • $48,130

    Average Annual Salary

  • 65.1° / 43.4°

    Avg High/Low Temps

  • 37.6

    Median Age

  • $148,967

    Median Home Price

  • 41.9 inches

    AVG Annual Rainfall

  • 4.3%

    Unemployment Rate

  • $767

    Median Monthly Rent

  • 24.6 minutes

    Avg Commute Time

What's the cost of living in Cincinnati, OH?

Cincinnati is relatively affordable compared with other large metro areas, especially those on the coasts. Still, Cincinnati's home prices are some of the highest in Ohio, though everyday expenses, such as groceries and transportation, are lower than the national average.

Value Index

Index Score: 7.7 /10

How we calculate this.

Cincinnati offers a better value than similarly sized metro areas when you compare housing costs to median household income.

Housing Costs this Year



Housing Costs Over Time

Data sourced from Zillow median home sale price data series. Additional data provided by the Austin Board of Realtors, Houston Association of Realtors, Intermountain MLS, Omaha Area Board of Realtors, San Antonio Board of Realtors, and the Salt Lake Board of Realtors.

Buying or selling a home? Find top real estate agents in Cincinnati, OH.


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What's the weather like in Cincinnati, OH?

Cincinnati has a fairly temperate climate. Winters in Cincinnati are rainy and gray, and summers reflect the city's nearly southern location with hot, humid weather.

Seasonal Temperature (Avgs)









Seasonal Rainfall (Avgs)

3.2 in


5.0 in


4.1 in


3.2 in


Monthly High and Low Temperatures (°F)

Data sourced from the National Climatic Data Center.

What's the best way to get around Cincinnati, OH?

Most Cincinnati residents live close to three major highways (Interstate 71, Interstate 75 and Interstate 275) and rely on their own cars to get around.

The Metro buses primarily operate downtown and in the suburbs immediately surrounding the city center.

Traveling in and out of Cincinnati is easy, with Amtrak located at Union Station, a Greyhound station downtown and two major airports (Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport in Hebron, Kentucky, and Dayton International Airport) within driving distance. 

Commuting in Cincinnati, OH

Means of Transportation
Above national average

Equal to national average

Equal to national average

Public Transit
Below national average
Average Commute Time

24.6 minutes

1.5 minutes less than national average

Average Commute Times by Zip Code

Data sourced from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey.

Who lives in Cincinnati, OH?

Cincinnati's strong job market, good schools and relatively low cost of living attract families. Some choose to stay close to the city proper in neighborhoods such as Oakley, Hyde Park and North Avondale. Others raise families in suburbs like Kenwood, Loveland and West Chester where there's more space and reputable schools.

While there are many affluent residents in Cincinnati, there's also a significant number of those who are struggling. Roughly 30 percent of residents live below the poverty level.

Less than half the population is religious, with a large portion identifying as Catholic. 

Age Distribution

Marital Status Breakdown

About the same number of single people in Cincinnati as national average

Data sourced from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey.

What is there to do in Cincinnati, OH?

There's no shortage of things to do in Cincinnati. Families enjoy the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, the Cincinnati Museum Center and the Newport Aquarium, which is just over the Ohio River in Kentucky. The metro area's northern suburbs boast attractions like Kings Island, Great Wolf Lodge and the Beach Waterpark.

Meanwhile, the area's breweries are a nod to Cincinnati's German heritage. MadTree Brewing, Fifty West Brewing Co. and Moerlein Lager House are just a few places to enjoy local beer. Arts and entertainment venues include parks with free concerts, shows at historic Music Hall and live performances at Riverbend Music Center.

Cincinnatians are also loyal to their football and baseball teams, the Bengals and the Reds, respectively, and there's a friendly rivalry between teams at Xavier University and the University of Cincinnati. 

Find out more about what there is to see and do in Cincinnati, OH