Pros and Cons of Living in Alaska

Around this time of year Alaskan’s remember why they chose this beautiful state to call home. However, like any state, Alaska has its pros and cons. It’s important to consider both sides when making the decision of whether or not to buy real estate in the last frontier. So what should one consider when moving? Here is a list of a few pros and cons to keep in mind.

Pro- Due to the revenue collected from the pipeline, each Alaskan who has lived in the state a full calendar year receives a dividend. The Alaska Permanent Dividend has been in affect since 1982. In 2008 the PFD reached a high of $3269, and has declined with the recession with the amount of $878 in 2012.

Con- Because of shipping and Alaska not being part of the contiguous states, cost of living can be more expensive than the lower 48. According to the municipality of Anchorage, cost of living in the city is 26 percent higher than the national average.

Pro- There is less of a local tax burden, and no sales tax in Anchorage when purchasing goods. Out of the 18 boroughs in Alaska only 14 levy property tax. According to the Office of the Estate Assessor, typical sales tax rates range from 2 to 5 percent.

Con- Alaska’s climates can be harsh and extreme, with long 8-month cold winters, with an average of 7 hours of sunlight during the winter and a 20 degree temperature. Alaska’s summers are usually mild with highs reaching the 70’s during most summers. Some areas during these summer months reach up to 24 hours of daylight on average. This weather is what makes Alaska unique, and usually ends up being one of the largest factors to consider when living in Alaska.

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