Is Newport, KY a good place to live? Pros & Cons

Is Newport, KY a good place to live? Pros & Cons

By: Eric Mees

 | 

February 23, 2022

When considering relocating to the Greater Cincinnati area, people often ask if Newport, KY is a good place to live. We might be a little biased (since we have a location there), but before you decide, we’ll share with you some numbers and a guide to help you make an informed decision.  

What is Newport Like?  

Newport, Kentucky, is situated at the confluence of the Licking and Ohio rivers. Directly across from Cincinnati, Newport had a reputation as “sin city,” dating back more than 100 years because of casinos, speakeasys and racketeering (and other unmentionables).   

More recently, the city decided to turn its focus to family-friendly endeavors, with the construction of the Newport Aquarium (1999) and the Newport on the Levee entertainment complex (2000), effectively reinventing the city as a tourist destination.  

Newport and the surrounding communities have also become important suburbs to Cincinnati, offering a lower cost of living than their cross-river counterparts.  

These key statistics will give you an idea of Newport’s size and population. Find even more information about Newport’s history, cost of living and crime further below.  

Newport Data 
Population (2010) 15,273 
Population (2020) 14,150 
Land Area (sq. mi.)  2.99 sq. mi. 
Elevation (ft.) 512 ft 
Time Zone UTC-5 (EST) 

*Data from Census.org 

Cost of Living in Newport, KY 

Overall, the cost of living in Newport is slightly less than the rest of the state of Kentucky and considerably less than the national average. Areas of value can be considered housing and rental costs:  

  • Median home values are $169,200, versus the national average of $291,700
  • Median rental costs are $737, versus the national average of $1,062. 
  • A one-bedroom apartment in Newport averages $654, while in Cincinnati, it would be $739.  

Other areas of value include utilities, transportation and groceries, all below the national average.  

Nearby Cities Median Home Cost 
Newport, KY $169,200 
Cincinnati, OH $200,000 
Covington, KY $147,700 
Fort Thomas, KY $282,900 
Dry Ridge, KY $162,200 

*Data from BestPlaces.net 

Quality of Life in Newport 

There are a number of factors that impact the quality of life in Newport. While Newport’s riverfront has turned into an entertainment district for the Cincinnati Metro, that’s led to an increase in traffic throughout the area, as well as a decline in Newport’s downtown.  

Newport is well ranked in several areas. Niche.com considers it to be the 8th-best suburb for young professionals in Kentucky, with a low cost of living, great nightlife and diversity, and easy access to outdoor activities. 

At 4.4%, the unemployment rate in Newport and the Cincinnati Metro as a whole (4.9%), is lower than the national average (6%). Being just across the river from Cincinnati also shortens commuter time. The average is about 20.8 minutes, while the national average is 26.4 minutes.  

Safety: Is Newport safe? 

According to CrimeGrade.org, the rate of crime in Newport is 46.60 per 1,000 residents. Newport ranks in the 18th percentile of safety, meaning that 82% of cities are safer. This gives Newport an overall “D” rating, putting it on par with neighboring towns of Covington and Southgate, but well behind Fort Thomas.   

City CrimeGrade.org Overall Score 
Newport, KY 
Southgate, KY 
Fort Thomas, KY A- 
Covington, KY D- 
Bellevue, KY 
Wilder, KY 

*Data from CrimeGrade.org 

As with most cities, there are areas of Newport that are considered safer than others. The most dangerous neighborhoods are to the central and east, while the safer areas are in the southeast of town.  

Food & Entertainment in Newport 

As mentioned, the Newport riverfront has largely become a destination for residents and visitors to the Cincinnati Metro. Driving across the Ohio River, on either the Taylor Southgate Bridge or the Daniel Carter Beard Bridge (or walking on the Purple People Bridge) from Cincinnati, deposits visitors into the entertainment district, which includes the Newport Aquarium, riverboats, shopping, movies, and a plethora of nightlife and dining opportunities.  

The riverfront offers many upscale and fast-casual chain restaurants, while Monmouth Street and York Street offer several local eateries, such as the York Street Café, the Purple Poulet, the Baker’s Table, Mad Mike’s Burgers, La Mexicana, the Pepper Pod, and Press on Monmouth. Jot India Restaurant and Amol India are also highly regarded for their traditional dishes.  

Of course, since many Cincinnatians are crossing into Newport, it’s perfectly acceptable to turn the tables and visit the Queen City for dining, attractions or fun. The Reds (Great American Ballpark) and Bengals (Paul Brown Stadium) play just across the river. Smale Riverfront Park is always a fun summertime destination, as is Cincinnati’s array of museums and galleries.  

Getting outside of the metro area affords ample opportunity to explore. Big Bone Lick State Historic Site is about 30 miles away from downtown Newport. Boone Cliffs and Dinsmore Woods are about 40 minutes away, and although closed at this writing, offer some great hiking and exploring opportunities as well.  

Pros & Cons of Living in Newport 

As with any location, there will be pros and cons to living in the area. Newport has plenty to offer in terms of entertainment and adventure, supported by a low cost of living. Weighing those benefits against a higher-than-average crime rate and weather extremes is an important consideration.  

Pros 

  • 18% lower cost of living than U.S. 
  • 4.4% Unemployment rate 
  • Entertainment opportunities 
  • Ease of access to Cincinnati Metro 

Cons 

  • Weather: Hot and humid summers, cold winters 
  • Crime rating:  “D” Score, equates to 46.60 per 1,000 residents  
  • Downtown decline 

Wrapping Up: Is Newport, KY, a good place to live? 

Only you can decide if moving to Northern Kentucky is right for you. Hopefully, this guide has answered some of the burning questions you might have about living in Newport.  

No matter where you decide to move, or even if you stay put, give us a call if you need self-storage. You can find self storage facilities in Newport, or use our storage finder to locate our other facilities around the United States.  

Eric Mees

Writer who also enjoys cars, guitars and Mars bars.

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