Pennsylvania has a rich cultural history, an affordable cost of living, low taxes, and a strong job market. Weather-wise, it experiences all four seasons. This is beneficial since there are rolling farmlands, lakes, rivers, parks, and outdoor trails to enjoy during warmer months. Amazing fall foliage, plus ski mountains and other winter activities round out the rest of the year. Some of the best schools in the country are here, like the University of Pennsylvania, great for continuing education. Big cities like Philadelphia and Harrisburg offer urban adventures and top-drawer medical care, while charming, small towns give residents plenty of local flavor.
Here are five of the best areas to live in Pennsylvania.
1. Mount Lebanon Township
A suburb of Pittsburgh, Mount Lebanon sits about seven miles south of the city. Its population is close to 33,000 and it has an average home value of around $235,200. Its history dates back to the 1700s, and it's divided into several neighborhoods, each with its own unique character.
The town is home to a popular outdoor swim facility, Mount Lebanon Golf Course, a tennis center, and an excellent library. There are lovely gardens, mature trees, and nature trails throughout the neighborhoods, helping this town to earn a Tree City USA designation. Locals take advantage of the easy to use light rail transit system and have top-notch medical care from St. Clair Hospital and hospitals in Pittsburgh.
With energetic downtowns at Castle Shannon Boulevard, Beverly Road, and the Galleria mall, Mount Lebanon was also recognized by Main Street America.
55+ Communities Near Mount Lebanon
High $200s - Mid $300s
133 new attached and single-family homes
Mid $200s - Mid $500s
80 new attached and single-family homes
Travel eight miles northwest of Philadelphia and you’ll run into Ardmore. This dynamic suburb of around 12,500 has average home values near $310,000. It was settled in 1853 and later renamed after the Pennsylvania Railroad station there. It's part of Philly’s Main Line area, which refers to a section of the city’s western suburbs. Its main street, Lancaster Avenue, features Ardmore Music Hall, plus trendy shops and restaurants. Ardmore also has one of Pennsylvania’s well-appointed shopping centers, Suburban Square.
Ardmore also offers a strong sense of community, diverse housing options, and farmers markets. There are two nearby country clubs: Llanerch Country Club and Merion Golf Club. The closest hospital is Lankenau Medical Center, and there are numerous groceries, shops, and recreation areas throughout the city. Public transport in Ardmore is provided by Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority. This includes several bus routes, the high-speed line, and regional rail.
55+ Communities Near Ardmore
Mid $100s - High $100s
306 resale condo homes
Low $600s - Low $1Ms
198 new and resale condo homes
Lemont is the quintessential small town, with a population of just over 2,100 residents. It is close to the heart of Pennsylvania, near State College, and median home values range around $229,000. It is surrounded by parks and recreation areas, like Mt. Nittany Conservancy, Millbrook Nature Center, and Centre Hills Country Club.
The town is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, partly because of its historic Granary. Built in 1885, this storehouse was used with the Pennsylvania Railroad to distribute grains. Now a community activity hub, it is used for holiday events, dinners, and more. The town’s Village Green hosts festivals and concerts.
Penn State University is less than two miles away in the town of State College and offers all of the amenities of a good-sized city. There are some small shops in Lemont, but most folks head towards the Walmart Supercenter, Trader Joe’s, international grocery stores, and other State College stores
55+ Community Near Lemont
Mid $200s - Mid $400s
282 new and resale attached and single-family homes
4. Radnor Township
Radnor is a Philadelphia suburb that is also part of the Main Line, about a 40-minute drive from Philadelphia. With a population of around 32,000 and high home values, this well-appointed town is desirable for home seekers of all ages. Community members are quite active and belong to service organizations and groups like the Radnor Conservancy.
The unincorporated communities of Wayne, Villanova, Rosemont, Garrett Hill, and parts of Newtown Square and Bryn Mawr are all contained in Radnor Township. Wayne is minutes from Radnor, and the two towns share events and activities. The area is home to many attractions, including Valley Forge National Historic Park, King of Prussia Mall, Valley Forge Casino, and Villanova University.
55+ Community Near Radnore
Low $200s - High $700s
1,720 attached homes
5. Blue Bell
This well-to-do village of 6,400 is around 20 miles north of Philadelphia. It is part of Whitpain, one of Montgomery County’s oldest townships. Whitpain was visited by George Washington and his troops during the Revolutionary War. Its Parks & Recreation Department sponsors many activities, like yoga, workshops for adults, concerts, and trips to Washington, DC and New York City.
The two country clubs nearest Blue Bell are Bluestone Country Club and pristine Cedarbrook. There are also over half a dozen nature preserves in the area, the Wissahickon Valley Public Library, shops, and restaurants. The well-respected Abington Health Center is right in Blue Bell, and other area medical centers include Suburban Community Hospital in Norristown, and Jefferson Surgery Center.
55+ Communities in Blue Bell
Mid $200s - High $200s
135 new and resale single-family homes
High $300s - Low $600s
171 resale attached and single-family homes