Spokane : Washington


What It Is Like to Retire in Spokane

Spokane is the 2nd largest city in Washington and one of the largest in the Northwest. It is located on Washington's eastern border with Idaho.  It is the cultural, social, and economic hub of this area, along with neighboring Coeur D'Alene.  The population is about 228,989 (2020 Census). Kendall Yards is a huge, new urban neighborhood development with restaurants, business district, and walkable new home community. There are also many interesting neighborhoods ranging from the late Victorian-era style Browne's Addition, to the Davenport Arts District of Downtown, and the more contemporary neighborhoods of North Spokane. The Spokane River and Spokane Falls run through the city which makes for a very interesting physical feature. 

Watch this short Youtube video prepared by Visit Spokane:

Where to Retire in Spokane and Home Prices

Baby boomers or active adults looking for retirement communities in Spokane will find every kind of neighborhood, from traditional downtown homes to brand new over-55 communities.
The National Association of Realtors reports the median home sales price in the Spokane-Spokane Valley area to be $404,300 in the 1st quarter of 2022, an increase of 19.8 % from a year earlier.


What Is Special about Spokane

Spokane has 75 parks!  Those include Riverfront Park and Riverside State Park, which are either or adjacent to downtown. There are 76 lakes or bodies of water nearby, in addition to plentiful festivals and things to do. Spokane is one of the most affordable cities in the northwest. Two private universities - Gonzaga and Whitworth - along with satellite campuses of several state universities.

What Is Not Special about Spokane

Spokane is remote - almost 300 miles to the nearest large city, Seattle.  Well, remote is relative; 300 fast miles on Interstate 90 to Seattle and "the coast".  Another point about not special Spokane -it is not diverse.


Who Will Like Retirement in Spokane

Outdoor people and those who want to live in a growing and active small city.  Especiallty people who like outdoors in the winter and perhaps winter sports - good/great skiing nearby, for example.


Local Economy Is Driven by

Construction, healthcare, government, education

Climate and Physical Environment

Spokane is where the steppe meets the foothills of the Rockies (Selkirks). It is dry and fairly cold in winter. The Spokane River and Spokane Falls run through the city.  There is often snow cover in winter, summers can be hot. Being east of the Cascades, Spokane is in a very different and much drier climate than Seattle. The average July high is 82 degrees and the average January low is 22.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

The Spokane Symphony and several theatre groups perform in Spokane. There are a number of galleries in the Davenport  and Garland Districts. The Fox Theater is active, restored original Art Deco state. Festivals and events are held throughout the year, including Spokane's two main Artwalk dates which attract large crowds to the art districts.


The crime rate is very high vs. the national average.


Medical Facilities

Spokane has 2 major hospitals, Sacred Heart Medical and Deaconess Medical Center. It is the medical hub of this part of the northwest


Spokane International Airport (with no international flights!) is one of the busiest airports in the northwest. I 90 goes through town. Rapid Transit is provided by ample bus service, a light rail system is planned.

Valuable Links

Wikipedia entry for Spokane
Washington retirement guide
Spokane Visitors Center


What people are saying about Spokane

Spokane is an up and coming town as Seattlites and Portlanders arrive seeking new entrepreneurial opportunities and reasonably priced real estate. Recently named #1 City for Outdoor Recreation with Affordable Housing by Realtor.com
Posted by Staci on August 20, 2018
What\'s \
\"Another point about not special Spokane - not diverse, pretty \"white bread\" and Red.\" I find this comment offensive.   Editor's note: This comment was introduced by a member. We decided to edit that edit because offense could be taken
Posted by samandrose on July 25, 2015
From Marketwatch article
Situated in the far eastern part of the state, Spokane is a far cry from rainy Seattle. In fact, this city boasts an average of 260 days of sunshine per year, making the outdoor amenities all the more attractive. Most notably: The area has 35 golf courses within an hour’s drive from town, with many set in pine forests that flank the area’s lakes and rivers. Among the region’s most renowned are the Coeur d’Alene Resort Golf Course, which sits on the shores of Lake Coeur d’Alene and has scored the No. 1 ranking in the category of “Beauty and Aesthetics” from Golf Digest; and Circling Raven, a 7,189 yard, par-72 course, which several prominent golf magazines have listed among their top 100 courses in the nation. Spokane also has seven municipal courses, on some of which you can play 18 holes for under $30. “Because of those prices, we’ve seen some people play two courses in one day,” says Jeanna Hofmeister, chief marketing officer for Visit Spokane, the area’s tourism bureau. The outdoor recreation in Spokane doesn’t stop there, say locals. Within an hour’s drive of town, there are 76 lakes, which means retirees can take their pick of activities from kayaking and fishing to parasailing and power boating. For the more adventurous, the Spokane River, which has class-three and higher rapids, runs right through the center of town, as does as does the 37-mile Centennial Trail for biking and walking.
Posted by glenns on August 21, 2013

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