When I think of Fargo, I inevitably picture Frances McDormand's Marge Gunderson on the hunt for a pair of roadside murderers. But of course there's much more to this city. (Fun fact: The 1996 film was not even shot in its namesake city; it was filmed mainly in Minneapolis.) According to a recent Wallethub study, North Dakota's most populous city is also the sixth "happiest" in the United States, based on a ranking that looked at the emotional and physical health of residents, cost of living, income, employment and other factors.
Fargo residents are apparently happy despite the notoriously miserable winters there. The city is a vibrant college town thanks to North Dakota State University, where football games are a popular draw. Prices are also extremely low, compared to New York City: The median asking price for a house is $244,900. And crime rates are low, taxes are low, and when you aren't freezing, there's lots of nature to enjoy. Local breweries like Fargo Brewing Company and eateries like Doolittles Woodfire Grill and HoDo Restaurant and Lounge round out the culinary experience, and cultural institutions like the Plains Art Museum and the Hjemkomst Center (home to a Viking ship!) in nearby Moorehead, Minnesota are popular destinations.
If any of that sounds appealing to you, here's a taste of what's out there.
909 8th St. S., Hawthorne
This five-bedroom, three-bath bungalow, also pictured above, is located in Hawthorne, one of the city's oldest neighborhoods and a popular spot with young professionals thanks to its large number of bars and parks. The bungalow, which was built in 2012, features an open concept kitchen with quartz countertops, a living room with a modern fireplace, and a master suite with a walk-in closet. Other highlights include a downstairs apartment with a kitchenette, two bedrooms, and family room. The house is priced at $545,000.
716 3rd St. N., Downtown
This five-bedroom, two-bath house was built in 1893, and still features a few period-appropriate touches, like hardwood floors and a clawfoot tub. The massive kitchen has been updated with modern appliances and a built-in fridge, and the bedrooms are spacious, with lots of of room for storage. There's also an unfinished basement, an outdoor deck, and a big yard. The downtown area is full of bars, restaurants, hip shops, and hangouts for college students and young professionals. The house is priced at $165,000.
2904 27th St S., Bluemont Lakes
Bluemont Lakes is a suburban-esque neighborhood in Fargo, rife with restaurants, lovely parks, and great public schools, making it popular with young professionals and families. This four-bedroom, two-bath house, has an eat-in kitchen with stainless steel appliances, in addition to a large open-concept dining and living room, and a den featuring recessed lighting and a modern fireplace. There's also a front and backyard, and a deck. The house is priced at $254,900.
2831 23rd St. S., Brunsdale
Next to Bluemont Lakes is Brunsdale, a more urban area with parks, restaurants, and a lot of young families. This five-bedroom, three-bath house was built in 1980, and is located close to the neighborhood's main action. Highlights include exposed brick, wood accents, a large kitchen with tiled floors and wood cabinets, and a big living room with a brick fireplace. Big bedrooms, an awning-covered patio, and a massive deck with a hot tub are additional perks. The house is priced at $299,900.
4768 40th St. S., Woodhaven
If you can swing something slightly fancier, consider this four-bedroom, two-bath farmhouse, which was just completed in September. Highlights include a white brick-accented kitchen, which has brand new stainless steel appliances; a modern fireplace, and a walk-in closet and his-and-hers sinks in the master suite. It also looks like the house has fun farmhouse touches, like sliding barn doors and vaulted ceilings. It's located in Woodhaven, a suburban-like area with lots of young families. The house is priced at $438,900.
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