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Things You Should Know Before Moving to Fargo, ND

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The Academy Award winning 1996 film may have been named after this North Dakota city, but Fargo was famous long before it made it to the big screen. Being the largest city in the state, it is a center for industrial, retail and health care sectors and continously boasts one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country.

Can't decide if moving to Fargo is right for you? Take a look at the following guide for tips and information you need to know before making your move. Once you've decided, you can fill out a quick and easy quote form and compare moving services right here at Movers.com!

Fargo Climate

Living in Fargo will provide a humid continental climate thanks to its proximity to the Great Plains, mountains and oceans. Winters in this city are often long, cold and snowy, with night temperatures dropping below zero over 40 nights per year. Generally, annual snowfall is approximately 50 inches.

Both fall and spring are shorter seasons, and can vary considerably when it comes to average highs. March can have temperatures ranging from 19 to 36 degrees, whereas September can range from 47 to 70 degrees.

Summers are warm and humid, with thunderstorms occurring quite often. The hottest month is July, with average temperatures in the 80s.

Fargo Neighborhoods

The city's downtown area, like many other metropolitan downtowns, is filled with museums, restaurants, community events and concerts - so if you're looking for a place to be at the heart of it all, downtown may be a place for you.

If you are looking for a more secluded residential area close to public schools and the airport (for city-to-city work commutes), you may want to consider neighborhoods close to McKinley Elementary: West Fargo, Pinkham, Prairie Rose and Harwood, among others.

Registering Your Car

If you are new to the state, you will have five days to register your vehicle for a permanent title; however, if you cannot make it to MVD office within that window, you may obtain a self-issuing temporary registration permit that is valid for 30 days.

Once you've obtained residency in North Dakota - which will automatically take place after being in the state for 90 days unless you are a student, tourist, or in the Armed Forces - you will have 60 days to update your current license to a North Dakota one. You must present proof of legal presence, current name and date of birth. Acceptable forms of ID are generally government issued - be sure to check with the department of transportation for more information.

Fargo Schools

Fargo Public Schools is responsible for the public education in most parts of the city, and includes three middle schools, four high schools and a performing starts school. High Schools in the area are: Davies High School, North High School, South High School and Woodrow Wilson. West Fargo Public Schools serves the southwestern part of the city.

North Dakota State University is located in Fargo, which is part of the Tri-College University System in Fargo-Moorhead, which also includes Concordia College (Moorhead) and Minnesota State University.

For private learning opportunities, Fargo holds Rasmussen College, a branch of University of Mary, and Masters Baptist College.

Fargo Employment

The economy in Fargo, which used to be centered on agriculture, is now dependent on retail, health care, education and cultural industries. Food processing, manufacturing and technology are also popular industries in the area.

Some of the top employers in the city are: Sanford Health, North Dakota State University, Fargo Public Schools, Blue Cross Blue Shield of ND/Noridian, Fargo VA Medical Center and Microsoft.

As of mid-2013, the unemployment rate in the Fargo Metropolitan area was at 3.7 percent, well under the national average thanks in part to oil shale drilling that has reinforced North Dakota's economy.

Living Costs in the City

Aside from some of your grocery expenses, you will most likely end up paying much less to live in Fargo than many other cities in the U.S. The city comes in well below the national average for utilities and the overall cost of living.

You can find single-family homes that range from $140,000 to multi-millions, depending on the size of the home. Mortgage rates are reasonable, according to locals, and though property taxes are slightly higher in Fargo than other areas of North Dakota, they are still less costly than some major metropolitan areas in the U.S.

If you rent, a one-bedroom generally starts around $500 per month and upwards, with some more expensive units in the Moorhead, Minnesota area. The average gas price per gallon as of July 2013 was 3. 65, and electric bills range from $100 to $200 a month for homes approximately 2,000 square feet.

Fargo Moving Resources

Moving and storage companies are ready and willing to help you with your move to Fargo, whether you're moving from out of state or from another county in North Dakota. Make sure you get estimates from multiple moving services before you commit to hiring any (at least three estimates). Check back to our guides for tips on how to choose your moving service wisely with important questions to ask, differentiating between types of estimates, and mistakes to avoid. Visit the following pages at Movers.com to get quotes for the following services:

Fargo Transportation

Getting around via public transportation in Fargo and its surrounding areas isn't too difficult, since Fargo is a major transportation hub for the region. For air travel, locals use the Hector International Airport for flights to Minneapolis, Chicago, Denver, Salt Lake City and various other cities.

For train service, you can hop on the BNSF Railway, which runs through most of the metropolitan area, or Amtrak service via a passenger train that leaves the Fargo Amtrak Station.

If you own your own car, you will get familiar with highways like Interstate 29, Interstate 94, U.S. Highway 81, U.S. Highway 10 and U.S. Highway 52 which connect to all parts of the city and its surrounding regions.

Culture & Contemporary Life

There are three universities located in the area, and as a result, Fargo is alive with numerous cultural events and experiences to enjoy at any age. You'll have the choice between various private theatre companies, including the Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre, Theatre ‘B' and Tin Roof Theatre Company. There's also the Fargo-Moorhead Opera and Fargo-Moorhead Symphony Orchestra for classical music lovers. The Fargo Theatre, an Art Deco movie house from 1926, features movies, community events and various film festivals throughout the year.

For outdoor recreation, try one of the numerous golf courses like Edgewood Golf Course and Fargo Country Club. The city is also home to a skate park and plenty of neighborhood parks to enjoy.

Fargo Relocation Tips

  • The unemployment rate may be favorable in comparison to other parts of the U.S., but that doesn't mean you shouldn't plan ahead. Do a thorough job search before you pack your bags. If you own a business, or are looking to start your own business, contact the chamber of commerce in your area.


  • If you aren't used to the cold, invest in plenty of warm jackets, scarves, hats and snow boots. While you will experience warm weather and sunshine as well, winters tend to be rather long and snowy.


  • The city is set up in a grid system, so you should be able to find your way around easily. North and south running routes are called streets, and east to west running routes are called avenues.

Jenna Farmer  Posted by Jenna Farmer on July 30, 2013

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