Finding NWA - Where to Live in Northwest Arkansas

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People who decide to move to Northwest Arkansas discover a great surprise. The average home price in Benton and Washington counties is near $220,000, and the region’s overall cost of living is about 14 percent lower than the national average. Paychecks go farther in Northwest Arkansas, considering the region’s high per capita personal income coupled with a low cost of living. Those who move from other metropolitan areas often upgrade their housing when they move to Northwest Arkansas.

Each community has its unique qualities, but they are all outstanding. It’s possible to compare cities using this helpful tool. Whether it’s a downtown condo, townhouse in a walkable neighborhood, or family home with a big yard, you’ll find it in Northwest Arkansas.


Quick Look

Fayetteville 2016 Population: 83,800

Known for: University of Arkansas, Walton Arts Center, Fayetteville Public Library, Botanical Garden of the Ozarks, Downtown Square

Housing Options: Homes for rent/sale, apartments for rent/sale, sustainable living and eco flats for rent/sale

A woman checks produce at the Fayetteville Farmers Market carrying a reusable bag from WITH Home Supply
Fayetteville Farmer’s Market, Tanner McGinty | c/o: WITH


Razorback Stadium | c/o: The University of Arkansas

Fayetteville is the largest city in Northwest Arkansas, and home to the University of Arkansas, the Walton Arts Center, and Dickson Street Entertainment District. It’s also the home to many entrepreneurs, working to build and scale startups.

Fayetteville has held onto its great history while keeping up with the wants and needs of a growing urban population interested in modern amenities. Great bike-ped trails, large city parks, the region’s largest farmer’s market, and a fantastic recycling program are a few of the city’s impressive attributes.

Fayetteville’s housing stock may be more diverse than in any Northwest Arkansas city. There are large, tree-covered lots on Mount Sequoyah, in eastern areas of the city, and west of the UA campus. The city is also home to the Washington-Willow Historic District, a 37-acre area that was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980 because of its architecturally significant homes. Fayetteville, being a college town, also has the most apartment and condo options in the region.

Newer housing areas are quickly developing.

Old Main | c/o: Fayetteville Visitors Bureau
Walton Arts Center Rendering | c/o: Walton Arts Center
Entertainment District | c/o Fayetteville Visitors Bureau


Quick Look

Springdale 2016 Population: 78,600

Known for: Tyson Foods World Headquarters, The Jones Center, Shiloh Museum, Northwest Arkansas Naturals

Housing Options: Homes for rent/sale, apartments for rent/sale, townhomes for rent/sale

A young hockey player stands smiling at the camera waiting to take the rink.
The Jones Center Youth Hockey | c/o: The Jones Center


The Jones Center | c/o: The Jones Center

Springdale’s central location makes it the perfect spot for families to live, particularly if one parent commutes north to Bentonville or Rogers for work and the other stays in Springdale or heads south to Fayetteville.

The city is the corporate home of Tyson Foods, a Fortune 100 company. Springdale is also the home of Arvest Ballpark and the Northwest Arkansas Naturals, the Double-A affiliate of the Kansas City Royals.

Arvest Ballpark | c/o: Northwest Arkansas Naturals


Quick Look

Rogers 2016 Population: 65,000

Known for: Walmart AMP, Pinnacle Hills Promenade, Daisy Airgun Museum, Railyard Bike Park, Beaver Lake, Hobbs State Park

Housing Options: Homes for rent/sale, apartments for rent/sale, sustainable living for rent/sale

Railyard Bike Park | c/o: Northwest Arkansas Council

Everyone knows Bentonville is the headquarters of Walmart, but many people don’t know Rogers is where the first Walmart Store opened back in 1962. Additionally, Rogers is where many of the 1,450 Walmart suppliers maintain offices in Northwest Arkansas, including Coca-Cola, Kimberly Clark and Unilever.

Major quality-of-life investments have occurred in Rogers, including the 2006 opening of Pinnacle Hills Promenade, a retail lifestyle center. The city is also home to the Walmart AMP; the Railyard Bike Park; and the Rogers Aquatic Center, a three-acre waterpark operated by the city. Rogers is also close to Beaver Lake, which provides recreation as well as drinking water for our entire area.

A female golfer puts at NW Arkansas Championship, an LPGA golf tournament held in Rogers.
NW Arkansas Championship | c/o: NW Arkansas Championship


Quick Look

Bentonville Population: 47,100

Known for: Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Scott Family Amazeum, The Walmart Museum, Brightwater Culinary School, Downtown Square, Walmart Stores Home Office

Housing Options: Homes for rent/sale, apartments for rent/sale, sustainable living for rent/sale

Sustainable pocket houses were recently added to the Bentonville Housing Market.
Black Apple Pocket Community | c/o: Black Apple


Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art | c/o: Casey Crocker
c/o: Scott Family Amazeum
Scott Family Amazeum | c/o: Scott Family Amazeum

Bentonville draws attention these days for its major quality-of-life upgrades over the past several years, most notably Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art (est. 2011) and the Scott Family Amazeum (est. 2015). There are walkable neighborhoods throughout the city, including the downtown area where the city’s investments, new restaurants and 21c Museum Hotel have made it one of the region’s most popular places to go after the workday ends. Bentonville is a great city for families as well, with the Bentonville Community Center, as well as the Bentonville Public Library. There’s also a fantastic dog park in a northern area of the city.

Bentonville is home to the corporate offices of Walmart and Sam’s Club, meaning a quick commute for the thousands of employees who choose to live in town. The Walmart Museum provides an interesting and fun history of the company.


Black Apple Pocket Community | c/o: Black Apple
Museum of Native American History |c/o: Northwest Arkansas Council

Bella Vista


Quick Look

Bella Vista Population: 27,000

Known for: Golf Courses, Bike Trails, Lakes, The Mildred Cooper Chapel, the Veterans Wall of Honor

Housing Options: Homes for rent/sale, apartments for rent/sale

Established as a summer resort community in 1965, Bella Vista became one of the state’s largest retirement communities. Since then, the city has transitioned from being a primarily retirement-focused community to welcoming young couples and families.

Bella Vista residents enjoys seven lakes, a marina, large treed lots, wooded common grounds, seven golf courses, tennis courts, the Mildred Cooper Chapel, parks with playgrounds as well as dog parks, and miles of gorgeous hiking and mountain bike trails.

Berksdale | c/o: Marc Henning
Lake Windsor| c/o: Marc Henning

Siloam Springs

Quick Look

Siloam Springs Population: 16,400

Known for: John Brown University, Siloam Springs Kayak Park, Siloam Springs Public Library, Simmons Foods headquarters

Housing Options: Homes for rent/sale, apartments for rent/sale

Downtown Siloam Springs, Feyerabend Photoartists | c/o: City of Siloam Springs

While many Northwest Arkansas cities have grown so much that they press up against once another, Siloam Springs is unique because it’s still a short drive from the region’s larger cities.

The city is home to John Brown University, a private Christian college. Located adjacent to the Arkansas-Oklahoma line, Siloam Springs is recognized as one of the nation’s best small towns.


It’s still possible to live in a smaller city or a rural setting in Northwest Arkansas without facing a long commute to the region’s primary work centers in Bentonville, Fayetteville, Rogers, or Siloam Springs or Sringdale.

The largest of our region’s neighboring communities are Gentry, Pea Ridge, Centerton, Lowell and Farmington. Each of those cities provide residents with ample housing options as well as banks, restaurants and retail businesses.

Smaller cities such as Huntsville, Prairie Grove, Elkins, Gravette, Decatur and Lincoln are still near the larger cities, and most of them have their own unique downtowns, banks, retail businesses, restaurants and school districts. Housing in Northwest Arkansas’ smaller suburbs can be less expensive than in the larger cities, and it’s possible to acquire larger tracts of land at reasonable prices.