The REAL Truths About Living in Phoenix: Things You NEED to Know Before Moving

Arizona’s capital city, Phoenix, is a magnet for those seeking sunshine, desert beauty, and a unique lifestyle. But before you pack your bags, it’s important to go beyond the tourist brochures and learn the real truths about living in Phoenix. This blog post dives into the must-know aspects of life in Phoenix, from the controversial to the quirky, so you can make an informed decision about calling it home.

Schools in Arizona – Don’t Believe the Hype

Arizona schools often suffer from a poor reputation. While there are certainly challenges, there are also fantastic public, charter, and private school options throughout the Phoenix metro area. Don’t get discouraged by generalizations; do your research (here’s a good place to start: Great Schools website). Ask locals for recommendations and consider resources like Niche’s school rankings. Choosing where to live based on your desired school district is essential. You can also check our videos talking about the Top Schools in Phoenix.

Where’s the Basement? Storage in Phoenix

Don’t be surprised – most homes in Phoenix don’t have basements. This is due to the hard, volcanic soil and a relatively high water table. Be prepared for limited storage space, and factor that into your home search. If a basement is a must-have, there are a few areas where you might find one, but they’re rare.

Cracked Windshield? It’s an Arizona Thing

Arizona leads the nation in windshield replacements. The dry climate and lack of snow and rain mean fewer road-clearing plows, leaving small rocks and debris to fly up and damage cars. Make sure your auto insurance includes free windshield replacement – you’ll likely need it sooner or later.


Arizona’s Gun Laws

Arizona has some of the most relaxed gun laws in the country. You can purchase a firearm at 18 and carry it openly (21+ for concealed carry) without a permit. Familiarize yourself with the laws (Arizona Department of Public Safety [invalid URL removed] is a good resource), especially if relocating from a state with stricter regulations.

Air Quality and the Phoenix Heat

Phoenix sits in a valley, causing air pollution to linger, leading to about 24 poor air quality days a year. If you have respiratory sensitivities, be aware and take precautions. Check resources like AirNow for air quality updates. Summers in Phoenix are notoriously long and HOT. Heat-related illness is a real danger; always stay hydrated and know the warning signs.

Phoenix is a dynamic, ever-evolving Southwestern city with its own unique quirks and charms. Being informed about these real truths, both the positive and the challenging, will help you make the best decision about whether Phoenix is the right place to call home.


We have so many people contacting us who are moving to the Scottsdale/Phoenix area, and we are so happy to make the transition easier for them. If you have any additional questions about all the things that come with living in Phoenix, Arizona, reach out to us at or by phone at (480)660-5974!