Young black man is commuting in the city.
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Ready to Make a Move? These Are the Hottest Cities for Young Black Professionals in 2024

Explore top locations for young Black professionals to live in 2024! From Atlanta to D.C., these are our top picks ranked by cost of living!


Mar. 28 2024, Published 8:03 p.m. ET

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Navigating the process of finding a new home can feel overwhelming, especially for Black people. Safety, community, representation, and affordability are valid concerns.

To offer guidance, we've curated a list of six cities to consider for your next destination, ranked from highest to lowest cost of living.

New York City

new york city
Source: Getty Images

New York City skyline.

New York City is a melting pot with a rich history, diverse food, and vibrant music. It's a city of dreams, which requires a grind culture mindset. About 20.2% of its population is Black, adding to its diversity. Winters bring heavy snowfall, and living costs exceed the national average by 27%. Comfortable living requires a six-figure salary, with a median of $74,000.

Washington D.C.

With a Black population of 44.66%, Washington, D.C. provides a vibrant environment but demands a higher income for comfort, usually starting at $80,000. Its northern location leads to higher living costs, making it more expensive compared to the South.

As the historical capital, it has landmarks like the White House and diverse seafood cuisine. It is in close proximity to Virginia and Baltimore. D.C. experiences all four seasons, with July being the hottest and January the coldest month.

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Chicago, Illinois

Chicago has a Black population of 29.2%, contributing to its diversity. However, living costs are quite steep. To live comfortably you'd have to make an income of at least $65,000. Chicago is known for its food and the famous deep-dish pizza and is also celebrated for its architecture and culture. The weather in the city varies from cold winters to warm summers. The fall season brings increased winds, which is why it's also known as "The Windy City."

Atlanta, Georgia

Atlanta is referred to as the "Black Mecca" of the South, with a Black population of 47.7% and a vibrant cultural scene. With HBCUs, prominent Black leaders, and diverse entertainment, it's the Black Hollywood of the United States. Additionally, Atlanta leads with 9% Black-owned businesses.

Enjoying all seasons with minimal snowfall, Atlanta offers warm weather year-round. However, living costs have risen to 2% above the national average, requiring close to six-figure salaries for comfort.

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Houston, Texas

With a Black population of 22.41%, Houston has over 10,000 restaurants with diverse cuisine — making the city a food lover's dream. Its 500+ public institutions focus on arts, technology, and history. Despite a cost of living 8% below the national average, a comfortable lifestyle in Houston requires around $63,000 annually. While the city enjoys mostly warm weather like other Southern states, temperatures may slightly drop in fall and winter.

Charlotte, North Carolina

charlotte north carolina skyline
Source: Getty Images

Skyline in Charlotte, North Carolina.

With a Black population of 35.2% and a rising, Charlotte is an excellent choice for young individuals and families looking to settle down. With so much history, culture, and an exciting sports scene, North Carolina offers a cost of living 2% below the national average. To live comfortably there, aiming for an income of about $63,000 is suggested. Overall, Charlotte is generally warm year-round.

The author’s content and opinions have not been pre-reviewed, approved or endorsed by Discover.

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