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Apartment Living in Alaska
When the visitor's bureau says "Welcome to the great state of Alaska" the emphasis is on the word great! Alaska is the largest state in North America with 570,380 square miles, twice the size of Texas. 17 of the highest mountain peaks are in this great state. Denali, the Indian name for Mt. McKinley, the highest peak in Alaska, means "The Great One." Nearly 2000 miles long, the Yukon River is the third longest in the nation and one of more than 3,000 rivers statewide. Alaska has over three million lakes and over 100,000 glorious glaciers, covering five percent of the state. It is the picturesque wilderness, summer sunlight, and mild temperatures in the spring and summer that make Alaska one of the most attractive states to visit. If you plan to stay, be prepared for the frigid temperatures and harsh winter winds to come. The winter weather and lack of sunlight will make you appreciate your apartment, making the selection of your new home that much more important.
Alaska is one of the wealthiest states per capita, ranking 20th among the states, with its economy relying mostly on petroleum extraction. Alaska is home to over 675,000 people and is divided into boroughs. Its three major cities are Anchorage, Fairbanks and Juneau. You'll find the cost of living higher in Alaska than in other states. The limited transportation can sometimes drive the cost of goods up in rural areas. Alaska however, can boast of having the lowest individual taxes, they have no state sales tax and they don't levy individual income taxes, which helps counterbalance their higher prices for food and apartments.
Located in south central Alaska, between the Chugach Mountains and Cook Inlet, Anchorage is the state's largest city with all the modern-day conveniences of highways and high-rises. The climate is milder than other cities due to its nearby seacoast. Anchorage is the hub for the state's tourism and delights the tourists with its many shops, museums, and cultural centers. Depending on apartment amenities and location, the average price for a one-bedroom apartment starts at $600 with two bedroom apartments beginning in the $900 range.
Coming in second in both population and cost of living categories, Fairbanks is located near the middle of the state and located about 120 miles from Anchorage. Fairbanks is a bit more rustic, embracing the outdoors and all the popular activities that it comes with. The climate can be unpredictable at times giving the city claim to some of the state's record highs and lows of the seasons. The cost of living in Fairbanks has dropped in the last five years with the average price tag on a two-bedroom apartment beginning at $800 per month.
Alaska's capital is located in the mainland and while it may be difficult to get to, the milder winter temperatures make the trip worth it. The city's average temperature is above freezing, which makes renting an apartment in Juneau more realistic. With a population of only 30,000, Juneau is only accessible by boat or plane. While no roads lead to Juneau, the city still comes alive in the summer months with hundreds of thousands of tourists, a major source of revenue for the city. The cost of an apartment averages in the mid $800 range for a two-bedroom apartment.