Monthly Archives: February 2017

The Pros and Cons of Living in a Gay Ghetto

Posted on February 28, 2017 in Buying a Home

Are you thinking about living in a gay ghetto? That’s the slang term for a neighborhood that’s mostly populated with members of the LGBT community. Often, the businesses in or around these areas are also owned by LGBT individuals. There are a number of reasons you might want to live in one of these areas, but there are a few reasons why you may not as well. Here are some of these pros and cons.

You’re Among Other LGBT Individuals and Allies

The Pros and Cons of Living in a Gay GhettoSome people simply feel more comfortable living among other LGBT individuals and families. You won’t have to worry about hiding who you are from your neighbors. You can proudly fly a rainbow flag from your home and display your Human Rights Campaign bumper sticker on your car without fear of being vandalized. You may find that you have a lot in common with your neighbors, too.

Your Children Won’t Be Bullied

Chances are, your children will be in school with at least a few other kids who have LGBT parents. This means that there’s less of a likelihood of your child being singled out and bullied. Many of these schools even have at least one LGBT person working there as a teacher or in the administration. Most also have a gay-straight alliance and a PFLAG chapter.

You May Pay More

Many LGBT neighborhoods are undergoing gentrification. That means property values are likely to increase, meaning you’ll pay more to buy a house in these neighborhoods. While that does mean that everything in the neighborhood is likely to have been remodeled and renovated, the bottom line is that some of these areas are simply no longer affordable for middle-class families.

You May Not like the Location

Some cities only have one small gay and lesbian community, and it may be located in an area of the city you don’t want to live in. For example, you may have to choose between moving into a gay ghetto or a much shorter commute to work. You’ll then have to decide if living in a gay neighborhood is more important to you than the commute or other things.

Finding the Perfect Gay Neighborhood

Some cities simply don’t have an LGBT neighborhood. That doesn’t mean there aren’t any gay or lesbian people in the city. It simply means they live throughout the area. Even in cities with a neighborhood with a high concentration of LGBT homeowners doesn’t mean you have to live there. Find the house that’s perfect for you.

Greensboro and Charlotte Rank Highly for LGBT Inclusiveness in North Carolina

Posted on February 20, 2017 in Buying a Home

If you’re a part of the LGBT community and are considering a move to North Carolina, there are a few cities that top the list of the most inclusive and welcoming. Ten different cities in the state were recently included in the Human Rights Campaign study of how inclusive a number of the largest cities in the U.S. are. Out of the 506 cities in this survey, Greensboro and Charlotte were the top two.

The Overall Scores

Greensboro and Charlotte Rank Highly for LGBT Inclusiveness in North CarolinaOverall, North Carolina’s cities were mostly above-average, which some may find as surprising. While no city scored a perfect 100, Greensboro did come in with an 80, while Charlotte received a score of 73. Four more cities scored above the national average of 55: Durham (69), Chapel Hill (68), Raleigh (59), and Carrboro (57).

The remaining four cities scored below average. Winston-Salem came in at 44, Fayetteville scored a 23, Wilmington was slightly lower with a 21, and Cary was at the bottom of the list with an 18. Overall, the state average was a 51.

Charlotte and Transgender Rights

While Charlotte is noted as having a number of protections for its LGBT citizens, the city was also at the center of the controversial House Bill 2. This bill passed the North Carolina General Assembly earlier in the year and preventing a non-discrimination law passed by the Charlotte city council from going into effect. This law would have protected transgender individuals from using the bathroom that corresponded to their gender identity. The Bill negated all non-discrimination policies passed by city officials.

Despite the city’s policy being nullified, Charlotte city officials do remain committed to making the city welcoming to everyone. Community leaders do plan on working on other protections that will shield the city’s LGBT residents from discrimination.

Other Cities

While the HRC does use a number of factors to determine which cities are included in their annual survey, it does sometimes miss cities that others rank as very LGBT-friendly. Asheville, for example, is known as one of the best places in North Carolina for LGBT individuals. It’s home to a large pride festival and parade, plus it has a large number of LGBT residents. The ratio of those who identify as LGBT to the rest of the city’s population is one of the highest in the state.

While the HRC list is certainly helpful, don’t always assume that cities not on the list aren’t LGBT-friendly. Some of the best aren’t included.

The Best Cities for LGBT People in Oklahoma

Posted on February 13, 2017 in Buying a Home

Oklahoma is known for being a fairly conservative state, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have several great places for LGBT individuals and families. While it may only have a couple of large cities, each does have a number of suburbs. If you’re considering moving to Oklahoma and want to be sure you’re living in an area where you’ll be accepted, you want to consider either Tulsa or Oklahoma City.

Tulsa

The Best Cities for LGBT People in OklahomaTulsa is a fairly large city that’s home to around 400,000 individuals. It’s the most progressive part of Oklahoma. Here, you’ll find a strong LGBT area anchored by the Oklahoma Equality Center. This group works to make sure LGBT individuals and families have equal rights in the state. The center has a number of different events throughout the year, including the Tulsa pride parade and numerous charity events. The center’s Dennis R. The Neill Equality Center assists Tulsa residents and those from the surrounding area with counseling, business assistance, and more. The center also offers support groups for LGBT youth.

Another resource for young LGBT individuals in Tulsa is the Open Arms Youth Project. It provides assistance with housing, food, counseling, and other needs for young people who may have nowhere else to go or who are struggling with their sexuality.

Homes in Tulsa are quite affordable and accessible. From homes on the edge of the city to downtown lofts, you’re sure to find something that fits your needs and your budget.

Oklahoma City

The capital of the state, Oklahoma City is one of the largest cities in the country by space. It’s very spread out, especially if you count its large suburbs of Edmond, Yukon, Bethany, Midwest City, and Del City. The OKCPride organization hosts many different events every year, including the annual pride festival. Many of these events are centered around the Penn and 39th street and the LGBT clubs and other businesses located there.

Another organization located in Oklahoma City is OKC Youth United. This group provides young LGBT individuals with support, housing, and other needs. The LGBT community as a whole is spotlighted by The Gayly Oklahoman, a free weekly newspaper available at many businesses in the city.

Housing in Oklahoma City is quite affordable, especially in the suburbs. Downtown lofts and homes in areas such as Nichols Hills are a bit more costly, but even so, many are less than the national average.