17 Reasons Not to Move to Fort Wayne, Indiana

Fort Wayne city smoke flag, Indiana State, United States Of America

If you’re considering a change and want to move to this seemingly lovely city, think again. Here are a few reasons why you should not move to Fort Wayne, Indiana.

1. Snow

Snow! It’s fun at first, but then it just won’t stop. In Fort Wayne, Indiana, snow passes the pretty phase and is just bothersome. The cold is bad enough, but the snow, which comes at an average of over 33 inches a yearOpens in a new tab. and often comes in large snowstorms, is the cherry on top of the freezing cold sundae. Unlike an ice cream sundae, however, winter in Fort Wayne is not at all sweet.

You’ll have to keep your car indoors or the doors are likely to freeze shut. Keep that ice scraper handy! You’ll need it in this frozen wasteland. I suppose you could always just carry around a small space heater. That would probably work better and melt the ice on your car doors.

2. Flooding

Fort Wayne was built around three rivers: St. Mary, St. Joseph, and the Maumee. These rivers are beautiful and bring in tourism, but also bring in something a lot more dangerous. Floods and flash floods are not usually dangerous in Fort Wayne, but the rainy season will cause the rivers to overflow, flooding nearby areas.

Residents should keep an eye out for flash flood warnings, as these quickly occurring disasters are known for making roads undrivable and leaving massive puddles everywhere you go. The flooding happens at the riverbank, so the closer you are to those beautiful rivers, the more you should keep a look out during rainstorms. Consider investing in some knee-high rubber boots if you choose to move to Fort Wayne.

3. There is No Sun

There are only 182 sunny days a yearOpens in a new tab. in Fort Wayne, making it a great place to move to if you’re a vampire. That’s nearly a month below the US average for sunny days a year at 205. Residents complain of never seeing the sun, which must have a grudge against this city in particular because it never comes here. Maybe, Fort Wayne is just a vacation home and is visited occasionally to get a break!

The cloudy skies are enough to make anybody feel gloomy, and the thick fog isn’t boosting morale either. Well, at least all those rainstorms will bring in lots of rainbows! If you can see the rainbows past the fog.

4. Termites

Who can forget about termites? These tiny insects live in colonies and can cause major damage to wood structures if left to their own devices. They can also irritate allergies!

To keep these household pests from tearing your house apart, look for some of the signs of infestationOpens in a new tab.. Wood affected by termite sounds hollow when you knock on it, and these critters leave behind small holes. You may also notice drooping walls and peeling paint. If you see these signs and think you have termites, call an exterminator immediately.

If you ever move to Fort Wayne, you have been warned. Don’t be caught with your guard down, as termites can be a troublesome and expensive fix.

5. Spiders

Spider, Redback or Black Widow at rest in chaotic web

Fort Wayne is home to two of the most venomous spiders in AmericaOpens in a new tab.. One is the black widow, a small black spider known for its red hourglass marking. Black widow bites contain venom that is more than 15 times more toxic than that of a rattlesnake.

Luckily, black widows are so small that the amount of venom they inject isn’t always fatal, but for small enough children it can be. The second is the brown recluse, a small brown spider that likes dark corners and edges.

Brown recluse bites can cause necrosis, or death of the surrounding tissue, causing a big, painful black spot to form around the bite.

Deaths from either spider are at a minimum due to modern antivenom and medicine. Still, exercise caution around both of these spiders! If you’re in Fort Wayne, you’ll have to take care and not put your hands into any dark crevices. You never know what may be lurking in the shadows.

6. Snakes

Indiana is home sweet home to a lot of different kinds of snake breeds. These range from harmless constrictors to deadly rattlesnakes. Fort Wayne has several different kinds of different types of rattlesnakesOpens in a new tab. inhabiting it.

These snakes are not naturally aggressive and will try to avoid biting humans, as humans are not their prey and are too big to be eaten. However, these snakes are also hard to spot due to their natural camouflage and quiet nature, so humans often don’t realize they’re there until it’s too late.

Don’t ever approach a wild snake, especially a rattler! The risk of death from a snake bite is extremely low, but they can still hurt! Bad rattlesnake bites can even result in amputation. Avoid any high grasses in Fort Wayne, Indiana, or just avoid Fort Wayne altogether.

7. Ticks

Is there anything on this earth nastier than a tick? These small arachnids are the perfect parasite. They’re small and blend into the tall grasses and weeds where they live.

Ticks will drop off the grass and attach themselves to a host, like a human. They burrow into your skin and suck your blood until their bodies have swelled up and they drop off. When swollen, they can be as big as a grape! These little arachnids are disgusting and painful to remove.

They can also spread Lyme disease and other illnesses. Plus, they are impossible to kill. They are too flat to smash, can swim if you try to drown them, and have tough outer shells called exoskeletons. The current methods to kill a tick are to drown it in rubbing alcohol, burn it, or cut it into little pieces, which is a nasty business all around.

8. Crime

Like any city, Fort Wayne has its fair share of crime. Violent crime is at 4.26 per capitaOpens in a new tab., a low-level competitor for property crimes, which is at 23.18 per capita. Property crime affects your belongings and property, including theft and destruction. This beats the state average for crime per capita, which is 3.56.

Crime tends to rise in more urban areas, and Fort Wayne proves itself to be no exception. You should think about getting a good security system if you ever move here. It’ll save you a lot of anxiety and help you sleep better at night.

9. Education

Schools in Fort Wayne, Indiana are not ideal, according to a set of statistics that compare student test scores in Fort Wayne to student test scores in the rest of the US.

Fort Wayne students on average don’t test higher than 40%, often achieving scores of 35%, 36%, and 33%Opens in a new tab. in standardized tests for Proficiency in Reading and Math, Proficiency in Reading, and Proficiency in Math respectively. The US averages are 47%, 49%, and 45%.

While standardized tests aren’t a foolproof way to judge intelligence or success, scores this low are concerning. You might want to consider homeschooling if you ever have to move here. There will be less testing and more learning.

10. Low income

Everybody likes a lower income, right? In Fort Wayne, the average income is lower than the US average of $25,066 per capita compared to $31,177Opens in a new tab.. Household income is lower on average as well by more than $10,000.

This lower income reflects lower wages for employees on average within Fort Wayne, and apparently, employees aren’t doing great financially. If you want to humble yourself by leaving money and worldly possessions behind, then you might want to consider moving to Fort Wayne.

11. High Population Density

Fort Wayne is becoming more urbanized, which is a direct result of the large population. It’s nice to have neighbors nearby to borrow sugar from, but in Forty Wayne those neighbors are getting more and more crowded, with the high population causing worse traffic, higher cost of living, and fewer job opportunities for residents.

This higher population can also lead to a sense of anonymity and lack of support, as people start to feel less like impactful individuals and more like they are just another face in the background of a large crowd.

Not everybody is opposed to crowding and urbanization, so this might be for you, but for most of us, we’d like a little room to breathe.

12. Bad Air Quality

Woman closing her nose feeling bad because of the air pollution on the bridge with traffic in the city

The air quality in Fort Wayne is less than ideal, with a higher than average pollution rateOpens in a new tab.. This pollution and low air quality can make everything from your house to your car to your lungs dirty and causes uncomfortable coughs. Watershed quality is also much lower than the national average, which already was not considered a safe level.

All in all, this seems like a rather dirty city to live in. The poor air quality can affect you more than you think, so breathe a little easier and don’t move to Fort Wayne!

13. Respiratory issues

Remember when I said the bad air would have some nasty consequences? Well, in Fort Wayne, those consequences are respiratory illnesses. Coughs, pneumonia, and other lung-related illnesses are usually going around, and in 2021 a huge breakout of RSV (Respiratory Syncytial Virus) baffles doctors, as the city had been following Covid protocols and there was no apparent reason for the spread of RSV.

Regardless of how it happened, coughs and sick lungs are common in Fort Wayne. Now, deaths caused by respiratory illness are not high, but it is a big inconvenience. Illness makes everybody’s life harder and can prevent productivity. So, for your health’s sake, stay home and don’t move to this city.

14. Bad for Walking

Fort Wayne is rated as a bad place for walking, possibly due to their high population of 253,691. Their score is 32 out of 100Opens in a new tab., and the city is described as car-dependent. Few sidewalks and lots of crowds make this a bad city if you rely on your own two feet to get you around the city.

If you were hoping for a green form of transportation, forget it. You’ll need to get a car to move around in Fort Wayne. It’s frustrating when walking anywhere becomes a hassle. The point of walking is that it isn’t a hassle! But it is in Fort Wayne. You should clean out your car, as you’ll be using it more if you move here.

15. Bad for Biking

Walking in Fort Wayne is bad, but the biking ability in the city is barely better. Biking in Fort Wayne is given a score of 44 out of 100Opens in a new tab., with few bike trails in Fort Wayne. It’s not hard to find a city that’s bicycle friendly, but Fort Wayne isn’t one of them. Biking is another form of green transportation that Fort Wayne seems to have shot down.

It’s difficult to maneuver around with a bike, so plan your routes out carefully. You might end up carrying that bike, as there is no place you can safely ride it.

16. Bad for Public Transportation

The public transit in Fort Wayne has the worst score yet at 22 out of 100Opens in a new tab.. Fort Wayne does have public transportation, the Citilink, but it just doesn’t cover very much ground. Transit is minimal in this city, leaving you to drive through the traffic head-on or just stay put.

This is really a city designed for homebodies, as you won’t be able to easily go anywhere. Perhaps if you combined all three forms of transportation– walking, biking, and transit– you might get somewhere.

17. It’s No Fun

Imagine being so boring that you got yourself on a list of boring cities! Fort Wayne, Indiana only ranks at #93 in a 2018 studyOpens in a new tab. reporting on the best and worst cities! There isn’t a lot in the way of entertainment or recreational opportunities in Fort Wayne, and most of the tourist attractions are parks and parkland. It’s not exactly where you would go for a good time on a Friday night.

There is stuff to do in Fort Wayne, but overall, it’s just a boring place. If you really like spending your weekend indoors, this might be the place for you.

Nathan Aydelotte

Hello! I'm Nathan, the lead editor for Suggested by locals. I grew up in the Boise, Idaho area and have lived here most of my life. I enjoy being close to the mountains where I can go hiking, camping, and mountain biking.

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