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Best Neighborhoods of Columbus for Young Professionals

Saad Dar

Writer and Editor at Baselane 19 July 2022 4 Min Read
Best Neighborhoods of Columbus for Young Professionals

Young professionals are flocking to Columbus, Ohio to be a part of the country’s fastest-growing tech hub. For the last decade, Columbus has been home to Meta, Amazon, and Google branches. The city has since attracted major Fortune 1000 companies and venture capital firms that fund some of the biggest startups, including Olive, Path Robotics, Lower, and Beam Dental.

Employment opportunities and competitive salaries draw a steady flow of young professionals to Columbus. While housing demand remains high due to relative affordability and in-migration, Columbus houses for sale are limited to a one-month supply. Inventory shortages have shifted the market to 52% renter-occupied, making Columbus one of the top cities for real estate investing. Here is a list of the best Columbus neighborhoods for young professionals to buy your next rental property.

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1. Italian Village

  • Median home price: $499,500
  • Median price per square foot: $337
  • Rental vacancy rate: 12.8%
  • Distance to city center: 1.3 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Bus, Trolleybus
  • Median rental income: $1,379/month

The Italian Village is considered one of Columbus’ first suburbs, offering an eclectic mix to over 2,845 residents. Located just north of downtown, the suburb, with its historic architecture, is surrounded by pastries, coffee, and pasta worth writing home about.

On average, the cost to rent a 1-bedroom apartment in Italian Village is about $1,303 per month. While this is a 6% increase compared to the previous year, residents earn around $72,000 in annual household income to support the additional cost.

Revitalization and large development projects have earned the Italian Village the highest home value appreciation in Columbus. With 82% of residents in the area living in rental properties, landlords can expect reliable cash flow and solid investment returns.

​​Pro Tip: Looking to invest in more properties for young professionals? Baselane’s banking tools for landlords can help you better manage your finances as you expand your business.

2. German Village

  • Median home price: $499,000
  • Median price per square foot: $334
  • Rental vacancy rate: 4.1%
  • Distance to city center: 1.2 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Bus, Trolleybus
  • Median rental income: $1,200/month

The German Village is one of the largest, privately funded historic districts in the United States. The community of 2,593 residents shares a passion for preserving the past through restored brick houses and sidewalks full of authentic charm.

Although the neighborhood is within reach of fast-paced urban life, German Village has green reprieves like Schiller Park and Frank Fetch Park. The rectangular street grid is pedestrian-friendly with easy access to the trolleybus for local destinations and buses to visit downtown and outlying areas.

Rental income falls below the average of other major districts on this list, but so does the vacancy rate of 4.1%. An annual household income of $83,501 and high occupancy rates means less turnover, and this can save landlords the $6,000 (or more) it can cost to find a new tenant.

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3. Arena District

  • Median home price: $649,000
  • Median price per square foot: $320
  • Rental vacancy rate: 8.9%
  • Distance to city center: 1 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Bus, Trolleybus
  • Median rental income: $1,346/month

Sports fans love this hood, conveniently named Arena, thanks to its proximity to the Blue Jackets, Clippers, and Crew stadiums. Situated in the northern part of downtown, this district is the best place to live in Columbus for young professionals that want the convenience of big games, bites, brews, and vibrant nightlife all in the same place.

Coined as Columbus’ billion-dollar belt, the Arena District is one of America’s leaders in mixed-use developments. The area offers its 1,125 residents 75 acres filled with 2.5 million square feet of office space, 300,000 square feet of retail, entertainment, and restaurants, and over 1,200 residences.


Available rental properties to buy tend to be multi-unit complexes and townhomes. Average rent prices have seen a 22% increase from the previous year, giving landlords and real estate investors the opportunity to make a quick return.

4. Short North

  • Median home price: $347,300
  • Median price per square foot: $331
  • Rental vacancy rate: Unavailable
  • Distance to city center: 1.6 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Bus, Trolleybus
  • Median rental income: $1,395/month

The Short North has been attracting young professionals since the 80s, thanks to its walkability and artistic vibes. Known as the “Art and Soul” of Columbus, this district is one of the best neighborhoods for young couples that appreciate buildings painted with colorful murals and a unique blend of history and modernity.

The Short North is an economic engine, nearly doubling its business operations since 2003. Today, there are more than 350 businesses, of which 91% are locally owned.

There are 896 housing units in The Short North for 1,356 residents. 778 units are occupied, with over 80% having renters live in them. With an average listing price of $347,300, it’s possible to break into this real estate market with less than a half-million dollars.

5. Grandview Heights

  • Median home price: $500,000
  • Median price per square foot: $309
  • Rental vacancy rate: 4.6%
  • Distance to city center: 3.6 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Bus, Trolleybus
  • Median rental income: $1,413/month

Moving into suburbia, Grandview Heights delivers a hybrid of urban flair and neighborhood warmth to a growing population of 8,254. This hip community has no shortage of award-winning craft breweries and taprooms, making it a go-to destination with the best bars for young adults in Columbus.

According to the Economic Policy Institute, a family of four should make at least $80,749 to be financially comfortable living in this district. Most residents are pulling in well over the comfort level, banking an average annual household income of $127,289.

Housing availability has increased by 7% since May 2022, with 46% of listings selling below the asking price. That said, properties are still selling for 5.7% more than they were a year ago. Real estate investors may be able to buy rental properties at a reduced price while maintaining decent home appreciation.

6. River South District

  • Median home price: $485,000
  • Median price per square foot: $348
  • Rental vacancy rate: Unavailable
  • Distance to city center: 0.7 mi
  • Access to public transportation: Bus, Trolleybus
  • Median rental income: $1,579/month

River South is a small community with the perfect blend of scenic views and city life. The Scioto Mile is a great getaway for young professionals looking to unwind from work with 175 acres of parks, bikeways, and pedestrian paths.


Keeping pace with development across Columbus, River South District is expected to see $400 million in revitalization projects, including several new residential properties. The plan coordinates other major projects in the area to foster the city’s most prominent features and economic growth.

If you’re looking to invest in River South District, you may want to act fast before the new developments drive the price tags up. 50% of residential real estate sold below the asking price last month, with 2-bedroom properties becoming 70% cheaper.

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FAQs
Where do most young professionals live in Columbus, OH?

Young professionals are looking for areas that offer walkability, great jobs, trendy nightlife, and access to nature. Short North and Arena District check these boxes thanks to the lively atmospheres, local boutiques, tasty restaurants, and luxurious condos.

Are there many jobs for young professionals in Columbus?

The city is projected to churn out 30,000 jobs in 2022, generating a growth rate of 2.8% that should push the Columbus area over 1.1 million jobs. The region also offers affordable housing rates 10% lower than the national average. Employment opportunities and the low cost of living make Columbus a great choice for young professionals just starting or growing their careers.

What is the safest part of Columbus?

As the capital city of Ohio, crime does exist in Columbus. Crime rates are higher in certain pockets, but Columbus is relatively safe. Being a smart citizen is encouraged no matter where you live in America. We recommend Northwest Columbus, Italian Village, and Upper Arlington.

Saad Dar

Writer and Editor at Baselane

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