Des Moines offers a high quality of life, affordable housing, and a strong job market. Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer looking to start a family or a property veteran looking to invest, Des Moines has something great to offer. Its diverse range of cultural and recreational activities, excellent schools, and strong real estate market make it a top consideration for prospective Midwest homeowners.

What makes Des Moines a good place to live?

Des Moines, Iowa, has grown in popularity over recent years—and for good reason. This midwestern gem offers a lot to those searching for a place to put down roots.

Affordability: Des Moines is incredibly affordable compared to other U.S. cities.  According to Zillow, the median home value in Des Moines is around $153K, making it well within the budget of the average hopeful homeowner.

Strong job market: Des Moines has a strong job market with plenty of employment opportunities in the insurance, finance, and technology industries. It is home to major employers such as Wells Fargo, Principal Financial Group, and Meredith Corporation.

Great quality of life: Des Moines offers a great quality of life with its vibrant arts and culture scene and abundance of recreational opportunities. The city has many places to explore and discover, such as the Des Moines Art Center and the Des Moines Symphony. The area is abundant with parks, trails, and outdoor attractions.

Family-friendly: Des Moines is a family-friendly city with excellent schools, safe neighborhoods, and plenty of activities for children. Its low cost of living makes it an attractive option for young couples wanting to start a family.

Strong real estate market: The Des Moines real estate market has been consistently strong in recent years, with low inventory and high demand driving up home prices. This makes it a good investment opportunity for those looking to buy a home and build equity over time.

Nice white home with a wrap around porch

What are the suburbs of Des Moines?

If city living is too fast-paced, the Des Moines area has many great suburbs. These towns offer a quiet, suburban lifestyle, while still being nearby all the amenities of the city.


Located just west of Des Moines, Waukee is a popular suburb for families. It offers excellent schools, affordable housing, and many parks and outdoor recreational areas. The city is home to the Waukee Farmers Market, which features local vendors selling fresh produce, baked goods, and other items. It offers plenty of community events to encourage residents to get involved, which fosters a pleasant and inclusive atmosphere.


Located north of Des Moines, Ankeny is one of the fastest-growing suburbs in the state. It has plenty of exciting shopping and dining experiences. Like Waukee, Ankeny has great schools and affordable housing. It’s right near Saylorville Lake, a popular summertime destination for residents to kick back and relax, or spend the day kayaking.


Located just northwest of Des Moines, Urbandale is a great suburb for those who want easy access to the city. Urbandale is home to Living History Farms, a museum that showcases Iowa’s agricultural history.

West Des Moines:

Located just south of Des Moines, West Des Moines is a popular suburb for families and young professionals. Residents enjoy its never-ending options for outdoor recreation. Additionally, it’s home to Jordan Creek Town Center, a shopping and entertainment complex featuring over 150 stores and restaurants.


Located just west of Des Moines, Clive is another great option for those searching for easy access to downtown. Clive is great for families and is home to the Clive Aquatic Center, which features a water slide, a lazy river, and other attractions.

From family-friendly Waukee to accessible West Des Moines, there’s a suburb to fit every lifestyle and budget. Great schools, affordable housing, and appealing atmospheres are just a few benefits of the Des Moines metro. Check it out yourself—it’ll be home before you know it!

Aerial view of a new community