Located in the northwest part of the state of New York, Rochester is just 75 miles east of Buffalo and around 85 miles from Niagara Falls. The area offers a combined urban and suburban atmosphere, surrounded by rural landscapes as you head out of the city. Rochester is a charming historic city, with a wealth of historic districts and neighborhoods, as well as 12,000 acres of parkland. The Genesee River runs through the city into Lake Ontario, offering more great sights and endless opportunities for fun on the water.

Before you make your move to Rochester, here’s what you need to know about the city:

1. How big is Rochester, NY?

Situated on the banks of Lake Ontario, Rochester is the county seat of Monroe County in New York State. Known as one of the first boomtowns in the U.S., it made its name by producing flour, and with a population of around 207K, it has since grown to be the third largest city in New York state.

Rochester is divided into four quadrants, each having its own neighborhoods and Center City or the Central Business District, and Center City or the Central Business District is located in downtown. As a historic city, Rochester has many old communities, such as the 19th Ward, Beechwood, Browncroft, Susan B. Anthony, Park Avenue, Cascade District and others.

2. What’s the weather like in Rochester, NY?

Rochester has a humid continental climate, with four distinct seasons. Winters bring cold temperatures and vast amounts of snow because of the lake effect, as the city is close to Lake Ontario. Springs can be rainy, and summers are warm and sunny. You can also get periods of high heat and humidity, but summers are typically comfortable and cool. In the fall, the city gets plenty of rain and cooling temperatures.

Living in this type of climate means you need to be careful with your belongings, especially those that don’t get everyday use. Instead of keeping seasonal décor, gear and more in your garage, attic or another area of the home that doesn’t get AC, you’re better off putting these items in a climate-controlled storage unit in Rochester. Such a unit offers the ideal conditions to keep your belongings in great shape so that you can use them again when you need them you can use them again when needed.

Beautiful colorful Autumn leaves in Rochester City of New York
Beautiful colorful Autumn leaves in Rochester City of New York

3. What is the economy like in Rochester, NY?

Rochester offers many job opportunities in high-tech fields, with a particular focus on the imaging and optics fields, with STEM sectors employing just under 6% of the workforce. Meanwhile, health care is by far the most common industry, employing almost 22.5% of the workforce. Other major industries include education and retail. Additionally, some Fortune 1000 companies are headquartered or have facilities in Rochester.

Companies that maintain offices here can use self storage to store excess furniture, printed records and more to avoid crowding their main floorplan. Moreover, brick-and-mortar businesses such as restaurants, clothing stores and boutiques can also take advantage of the service to streamline their workflow. Additional merchandise can sit in a storage unit until it’s ready to come on the shelves.

4. Transportation in Rochester, NY

Public transit in Rochester is provided by the Rochester-Genesee Regional Transportation Authority (RGRTA), which offers a number of bus services throughout the city. Around 9% of commuters rely on public transport to get to work, while just under 70% drive their own vehicle. Residents experience average commutes of 19.5 minutes, well under the national average of just over 25 minutes.

5. What are the education options in Rochester, NY?

Rochester is served by the Rochester City School District, which provides several facilities in and around the city. There are also a number of private and charter schools operating in the city. Rochester University is the main college in the city and often ranks among the top universities in the country. Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) is another renowned university that calls the city home.

College students in Rochester can use self storage to keep bulky and seasonal items away from their dorms or apartments to help them keep a tidy and breezy living space. Moreover, as the school year draws to a close, they can put all their belongings in a storage unit instead of moving them back home. This saves them a costly and logistically challenging relocation process. As the new semester resumes in the fall, they can easily retrieve their items.

6. Entertainment options in Rochester, NY

Art and culture lovers can enjoy a variety of theater shows, live music, ballet performances, musicals, art galleries, and museums in Rochester. The city is also known for its strong culinary scene, with restaurants serving up dishes from across the globe. History buffs can take in spectacular sights in the city’s historic districts, home to a wealth of protected buildings and cultural institutions. There’s also plenty for outdoor lovers to enjoy, with sprawling parklands, riverside trails, and even beaches.

7. What is Rochester, NY, famous for?

Sometimes called the “Home of Photography”, Rochester is where both Kodak and Xerox Corp were founded and based. The Kodak Museum and flower garden remains a top attraction in the city to this day. Rochester is also known for its amazing festival season, kicking off with the annual Lilac Festival, which gives the city its nickname, “The Flower City”. A strong foodie scene has put Rochester on the culinary map, while a treasure trove of entertainment venues offers endless things to do. Essentially, Rochester offers all the amenities of a big city, while still remaining small and cozy.

With four distinct seasons, you’ll experience snowy winters, warm summers, and refreshing transitional seasons. As such, there’s a cycle of different things to enjoy throughout the year, from skiing to relaxing on the beach.

Corn Hill, Rochester, NY
Corn Hill, Rochester, NY in the spring

8. What does the moving process to Rochester, NY, involve?

Once you’ve found your ideal home in Rochester, the moving process is relatively straightforward. However, proper planning will ensure your relocation is smooth and care-free. To ease the load, it always helps to hire a professional, high-rated moving company.

As you prepare for the move, it might be worthwhile to send your belongings ahead of time and have them put in a storage unit close to your new Rochester home. This way, when moving day comes, you’ll have one less thing to worry about. You can visit your storage unit and gradually decorate your new home without feeling overwhelmed by everything being there at once.

9. Is Rochester a good place to live?

Rochester boasts a diverse population, with everyone from young professionals to families calling the city home. It frequently appears in lists of the most diverse cities in the U.S., resulting in a city that caters to many different needs and tastes. Let’s take a look at some of some the popular moving routes leading to Rochester, NY:

Moving to Rochester, NY, from Boston

When you’re moving from Boston to Rochester, you get a better bang for your buck. The cost of living is much lower here, which also includes real estate prices. You’re probably going to get more house in Rochester as opposed to what you enjoyed in Boston. You’d also have a short commute here, whether you’re going to use public transit or driving your car to work. The city also has diverse dining options and plenty of festivals where locals and visitors come together to explore Rochester.

Moving to Rochester, NY, from NYC

Rochester can be a great alternative for those fleeing the hectic pace of New York City while still wishing to remain in the state. There are great schools in the area for families with children moving here, with college options included, too. Rochester is close to Lake Ontario and the Erie Canal, making it an excellent place for nature lovers, with trails, parks and rivers offering ample opportunity to take advantage of the area’s natural beauty.

10.  What are the housing options in Rochester, NY and how can self storage help?

Rochester is a vibrant city with plenty of housing options depending on the lifestyle of your choice. If you wish to be closer to the action, perhaps a downtown rental would be more to your liking. The downtown area is the financial and cultural hub of the region, displaying 19th century architecture and the amazing High Falls of the Genesee River.

If you’re considering single family living, the 19th Ward might be a good choice. It is the largest residential community in Rochester, whether you’re looking for a small cottage or a mansion. Other residential neighborhoods include Browncroft or Cobbs Hill, where you can find historic homes. Once you find your ideal home, consider using self storage beyond the moving stage. The service can help you keep your home organized and uncluttered – you can put your seasonal items, such as decorations, outdoor gear, bulky clothing and more, in storage until you need them again. Moreover, if you’re remodeling, you can also place items from the area under construction in a storage unit to keep clutter to a minimum for the duration of the project.

Lakeside master planned community in Rochester, NY

Another instance when you can use self storage is when you move in with your parents to form a multi-generational household. As two households, merge, it’s likely that many belongings won’t fit into the new home. Consider putting additional furniture, appliances, family heirlooms and more in storage until you can use them again. If you’re working from home and need to set up a home office, self storage can also help you. Furniture, decorations and other displaced items can sit in storage until you find new uses for them.

11. What are the storage options in Rochester, NY?

Once you have found your ideal home, it’s time to find a storage unit to your liking. One easy way to do so is to consider an option in your neighborhood so that you don’t have to drive far when you have to visit it.

Next, consider your needs and let that help you decide what unit size you need. Most people rent a 10’x10’ unit, but you can rent a 5’x5’ or 5’x10’ if you’re storing decorations and small outdoor gear. For the contents of a one-bedroom apartment, a 10’x15’ unit is ideal. A 10’x20’ unit is great for keeping the belongings of a two-bedroom home or for car storage, whereas for a three- or four-bedroom, you’ll need a 10’x30’. The same unit size is also suited for boat storage.

To find your ideal Rochester storage unit, check out the StorageCafe portal.


Mirela is a real estate writer and lifestyle editor for Yardi. With an academic background in English and translation, Mirela now covers a range of topics including real estate trends, lifestyle and economy. Her previous experience in proofreading academic articles has inspired Mirela to choose a writing career path. In her free time, Mirela enjoys reading, but also hiking and creating art. You can contact Mirela via email.

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