15 Pros and Cons of Living in Green Valley, Arizona

a road in between two mesas in Arizona

Everyone has their own preferences and needs that should get considered when making decisions. Of course, not all decisions can take these factors into account. 

But when you’re making a plan to move, it’s essential to know ahead of time how your new location will impact your life for better or for worse. It’s best to head into a life-changing event like a move with optimism, looking for the good but also being realistic about the not-so-good.

If you’re planning a move to the Grand Canyon State, here are 15 pros and cons of living in Green Valley, Arizona, that you should consider to help you make the most of your newly unfolding next chapter.

#1 Pro: Low Crime Rate

Especially for families, the level of safety in a new neighborhood is hugely important to know before following through on a big move. 

Thankfully, Green Valley, Arizona, is a very safe and secure area with a low crime rate. Crime rates get measured by different types of crime, both violent and nonviolent. In one of the most recent polls, the overall violent crime rate in America as a whole was about 366.7 per 100,000 inhabitants.

In Green Valley, Arizona, violent crime is 0.93 per 1,000 residents, whereas nonviolent property crime is 15.21 per 1,000 residents. Both these figures are below the national average for individual cities. 

Compared to other cities in the U.S., Green Valley falls in the middle and is still considered a safe place to live, especially in terms of violent crime. While your chance of falling victim to a violent crime in Green Valley is 1 in 1,077, in the state of Arizona overall, your chances of the same are 1 in 199.

So overall, it’s one of the safer places that you can live in the state of Arizona.

#2 Con: Large Older Population

While this may be one of the factors contributing to Green Valley’s sense of safety and security, many young families may consider it a drawback that Green Valley has a predominately older population.

In 2019, the median age of the city of Green Valley was measured at around 73.1. In 2018, the median age was 70, which signals that the population of this Arizona city is increasing in age each year.

Although this isn’t a negative thing in and of itself, this demographic may not provide an excellent fit for potential new residents of the city. Since it’s a popular area for older folks and retirees, young families or even younger singles may not feel as welcomed or at home.

#3 Con: Lack of Events, Entertainment, and Community

Because of its aging population, Green Valley, Arizona, doesn’t offer a lot in the way of entertainment. 

While some people might welcome the quiet and calmness of this town, the lack of restaurants, attractions, or other sorts of fun venues will likely leave some people feeling bored. 

To be fair, there is a sense of community and activities that probably cater more to the older crowd in Green Valley than to the younger ones. There are parks, small groups, several golf courses, a farmer’s market, and some historical sites in the area. 

#4 Pro: Proximity to Tucson

The lack of excitement doesn’t have to be a negative one for everyone. Some introverted families might enjoy the quiet and relative calm of the area immensely. But those looking for more excitement may find themselves disappointed.

However, Green Valley’s closest bigger-city neighbor is Tucson, Arizona, and it takes about 20 minutes to get from one to the other. Since there is plenty to do in Tucson, some people may be able to overlook the lack of entertainment in Green Valley, thanks to the short commute. 

#5 Pro: Low Cost of Living

Although the average household income in Green Valley, Arizona, is less than the average nationwide, living costs are correspondingly lower. In fact, the economy in this area is excellent for families and offers a wide array of jobs, especially in the technology and math sectors.

In areas like housing, health, groceries, and transportation, this area falls below the national average and below Arizona’s state average.

Green Valley’s averages are slightly higher than the national ones in the areas of utilities and miscellaneous costs, such as those for entertainment and restaurants. But still, even in these areas, Green Valley is on the less expensive end when it comes to Arizona’s averages.

#6 Pro: Positive Job Growth

An aerial photo of Tucson, AZ. Many houses in the front of the picture, a few large buildings in the middle, and some mountains in the background.

Job growth has been positive in this area. Most notably, in Green Valley, salaries for teachers, law enforcement officers, and those in the health sector surpass the national average.

With many people across the nation still working from home, Green Valley contributes to that percentage as well. Up to 15% of Green Valley inhabitants currently still work from home, one of the most significant city-wise percentages nationally.

#7 Pro: Good Health Care

As mentioned before, Green Valley is a great place to be in the healthcare industry. So not only is it a great place for physicians and workers, but it’s also a great place to seek healthcare. 

The national average is 210 physicians per 100,000 people, but in Green Valley, the ratio is 259 to every 100,000 residents. The cost of healthcare is also better than average in this city: almost 20% less than the national average.

What’s more, the risk for cancer and respiratory illness in Green Valley is well below that in Tucson, the state of Arizona on average, as well as the nation on average.

#8 Con: Lack of Diversity

Not only is the population lacking diversity in age, but the population is about 93.6% White. The Hispanic population accounts for 5%, while the Black population accounts for only .244% overall. 

Likewise, the city is predominantly religious, with around 40.5% claiming a faith of some sort. Aside from a combined 1.5% claiming Judaism or another Eastern faith, the rest of the religious population holds to a form of Christianity, whether it be Catholic, Baptist, or another denomination. 

For those who may fit into these demographics, the lack of diversity may not be an issue. However, for those who are looking for a more inclusive or diverse environment, they’re not likely to find it.

#9 Con: HOAs Can Be Picky

For those who like the idea of settling in a quiet and calm town, the suburbs might be the perfect destination. But be forewarned that even this ideal white-picket-fence dream will be met with a healthy dose of reality.

Home Owners Associations don’t always have the best reputation overall and can be known for being overbearing and difficult to please. Although not all of them stick to this stereotype, Green Valley has its share of pesky HOAs.

Since it’s a popular spot for retirees, many of the members of the older demographic are more particular about home upkeep and standards. Some younger families who don’t have as much time to devote to lawn care or home upkeep might desire more lax standards.

#10 Pro: Perfect for Retirement

If you haven’t already guessed it by now, we’ll come out and tell you: Green Valley is a great place to settle down in your golden years.

Not everyone looking to relocate has a young family in tow or is looking for bright lights and excitement. Many couples or singles are looking for a secure and pleasant place to put down roots for a new chapter after retirement.

For that goal, Green Valley is the perfect spot. Although it’s not an official retirement community, the demographics already suggest that it’s a calm and easy place to live for retirees both in terms of cost of living, health care, and other essential standards.

#11 Pro: Cooler Weather

A photo of a desert at sundown. The sun dropping below mountains in the distance. We see the silhouettes of several cacti.

The state of Arizona isn’t exactly known for its moderate temperatures. Still, if you’re not a fan of insanely hot weather, but you’re looking to move out west amid some desert terrain, Green Valley is a good compromise.

It’s cooler than Tucson and much cooler than Phoenix because of its higher elevation. Average temperatures reach their highest at 79 degrees Fahrenheit in July, while average winter temperatures are around 48 degrees in January.

#12 Pro: Decent Public Schools

Even though the city caters to older folks, its public schools are better than the national average. Correspondingly, Green Valley’s residents tend to have more higher education than the national average as well.

As mentioned before, STEM jobs are popular and growing in the area, putting a greater focus on education. Compared to 29% nationally, 33% of Green Valley residents have some college education, and 18%, compared to the national, 12% have a master’s degree or higher.

#13 Con: Home to Some Creepy Crawlies

For anyone who’s never lived in the western United States, the wildlife may not cross your mind as a factor. However, it’s good to prepare for the change in the ecosystem that comes with moving to an arid area.

Green Valley has its share of desert animals, including some that may intimidate. Among them are poisonous snakes like rattlesnakes, biting centipedes, scorpions, and even tarantulas, most of which are active at nighttime. So it’s crucial to both watch your step and be vigilant if you have pets.

#14 Pro: No Light Pollution

Green Valley is located in a dark skies zone, meaning that there are several observatories in the area. Because of this, ordinances in the area keep the artificial light at a minimum. 

You’ll see this reflected in a small number of street lights that cast light down instead of up as well as house lights that are also down-lit. While this means you might want to keep a flashlight handy if you venture out at night, it also means that you’ll have a beautiful view of the sky every night.

Without lots of ambient light pollution, the stars are highly visible. The night sky is often extremely clear, making for a scenic view that’s perfect for the neighboring observatories and for residents to enjoy.

#15 Pro: Lots of Space

A photo taken from the top of a mountain. A few buildings can be seen on top of the mountain. Down below is a large valley, with more mountains in the distance.

With a population of a bit over 20,000 with an area of around 19.75 square miles, the population density in Green Valley, Arizona, is around 714 per square mile. This provides a reasonable population density for suburban areas.

People moving from large cities will be able to appreciate the extra space that many homes in Green Valley, even within the suburbs, occupy. For families, it’s a great way to have yard space for playing.

Many homes are traditional in style, with some Mediterranean architecture thrown in as well. The homes are often spacious as well, and as mentioned before, you get more bang for your buck when purchasing one in the Green Valley area in terms of square footage as well.

Final Thoughts

When it comes down to the pros and cons of living in Green Valley, Arizona, the city is a great area that will meet people’s preferences and needs differently. It’s up to you to decide if this peaceful town is the perfect fit for you or not.

But here’s what to keep in mind when making your decision. Don’t forget that this small city has a low crime rate, a short commute to Tucson, low cost of living, excellent job growth, and good healthcare, offers an ideal environment for retirees, has moderate weather for its area, decent public schools, beautiful night skies, and plenty of space to roam.

On the other hand, remember that the population of Green Valley is predominantly older and not very diverse, the town doesn’t offer many exciting attractions, the HOAs can be picky. You might run into some intimidating creepy crawlies at nighttime.

When you weigh the pros and the cons, we hope it becomes easier to see whether or not Green Valley, Arizona, is the perfect place for you to settle down. 

Related: 25 Pros and Cons of Living in Arizona