17 Reasons Not to Move to Montgomery, Alabama

Montgomery, Alabama, USA downtown skyline at night.

Montgomery, Alabama is the capital city of Alabama. A state which has had a long and complicated history that the residents have worked hard not to be defined by. There are several things about the state and Montgomery specifically that someone looking to move there should consider.

17. Surprise Dangerous Weather

Weather can be rather unpredictable. When people wonder where the weathermen get the stereotype of being guessers rather than being able to scientifically tell what the weather will be, Alabama is a good example of why that stereotype exists. Dangerous tropical storms can crop up in a matter of minutes with aggressive winds, and downpours that can cause copious amounts of water damage to an unprepared resident.

Montgomery natives will usually have to take this into account during certain times of the year and be prepared to have anything from excessive heat to torrential downpours that could make things dangerous super fast. These dangerous weathers might even include thunder and lightning storms, which if anyone is caught out in the open, could become extremely dangerous as well as the risk of downed trees and power lines. It’s not a daily occurrence, but a danger.

16. Humid and Hot

Because Alabama is a Southern state, it has been credited with being warmer, but what comes with that is aggressive humidity. Instead of dry heat, it is like moving through air sludge when the air and the water in the air heat up a lot. This humidity and heat can be killer. It’s not fun to be in and is a drain on resources such as electricity.

Some residents have even pointed out that they usually have to run the air conditioning unit all day and every day in the hottest months of the year such as August. This heat and humidity combo can be unhealthy for a variety of reasons, most specifically the danger of dehydration and heat stroke are real, and it doesn’t help to feel sluggish in the heat.

15. Hurricane Weather

Montgomery may be the capital city, and a bit inland, but it has its fair share of impact from hurricane seasons. The state has a small portion in the gulf and is one of the many states affected each year by the increasing number of hurricanes. The level of damage and lives lost from these storms is often astronomical.

Being prepared for these often take time and money out of people’s budgets. Having preparedness is important, but it can be especially scary for a family to have to go through an event like this. Additionally, the damage to property and possessions is often devastating depending on what category the hurricane was. Even tropical storms have the potential to cause some serious damage to houses, cars, and trees in the area of Montgomery.

14. Generally Unfriendly to those in the LGBTQIA+ Community

Montgomery isn’t the best place to be if someone is part of the LGBTQIA+ community. While for the most part, individuals can be kind and respectful of others, the state of Alabama has never been great about those in different circles. If someone isn’t into the Christian point of view, they are usually and often outcasts of society.

This is extended and heightened to the people who might’ve chosen to directly oppose the religion and religious beliefs they may have been raised with. Considering the high volume of Southern-specific Christian ideals, this is highly offensive to the people who are extremely religiously inclined, and they see only this offensiveness over the person to who they are less than friendly. Instead of focusing on the person who is in these opposing communities, they can’t get past the differences.

People in the LGBTQIA+ communities find it more difficult to exist in a peaceful and happy manner in Montgomery. They’ll consistently be faced with homophobia, people who don’t understand, and disrespect. It’s not a safe space for these individuals to embrace what they feel is part of their whole identity and that makes Montgomery less inclusive as a result.

13. Highly Racist

Right along that vein, because of the troubled and long past of Alabama, Montgomery is highly racist. While the volume of black and people of color in the community is pretty high, they are treated with the same disrespect that these people have fought to overcome. While not everyone is like this when a city has people who are not even impacted by this racism individually can recognize it, that means there is a problem.

This kind of mentality brings up a whole slew of problems that Montgomery faces as these people, skin color considered or not, struggle to exist just the same as their next-door neighbor with white skin. Montgomery is unfortunately one of those cities where racist ideals are held in higher esteem than those of openly inclusive ideals.

12. Extremely Religion Focused

The Southern states as a whole tend to be pretty focused on religious beliefs and while this can be a great thing, it can also saturate the things that don’t need a religious viewpoint with that religion as a result. Montgomery has a high volume of believing populace who constantly impress their beliefs on everything they do, whether it be kind or not.

This can make activities that others might enjoy or a potential new resident would want to participate in highly frowned upon by the existing residents and often the choices leading through this viewpoint are generally poor and not as thought through logically as other places that don’t have such a tie to religious leadership and views.

11. Places Closed on Sunday

Right along with this religious view is the idea of the Sabbath. The greater part of individuals doesn’t hold Sunday to be a holy day anymore. Either out of necessity due to workdays or simply because that’s not something that they believe or have as a special part of their life. But because of the high religious saturation of MontgomeryOpens in a new tab., there are many businesses that are closed on Sunday and that can be a bit of a con for people who want their Sundays not working to be able to do something.

Many of the businesses also close around 10 pm almost like it were a retirement city. This early turn-in might be encouraged at some points to promote a safer city, but for people that don’t have anything to do after 10 pm and want to do stuff, they might and often do turn to less savory activities.

10. Unbalanced Southern Hospitality

The Southern Hospitality in Montgomery is one of two things. It is either extremely overbearing or over the top for anyone who might be visiting. Or it is practically non-existent. Either side of this scale presents a unique problem, especially for a southern state where its hospitality is usually legendary.

The southern hospitality mentality is supposed to represent the willingness to share whatever is had, even in cases where abundance isn’t the current status. It’s a simple act of sharing lemonade with neighbors, helping the community out with projects, and doing it because it is right, not because of any desire to seek out praise. This has slowly been lost over the years and a place like Montgomery has lost a significant amount of that in the most amounts.

9. Phrases Can be Insults

The southern phrases that someone would often hear in conjunction with states like Alabama or Georgia have a nasty surprise for them. Things like bless your heart aren’t always meant to be kind and concerned, in fact, a lot of these southern phrases are intended as a passive-aggressive insult to the person that they’re intended for.

This can be rather insulting to someone who understands the implications of what is being said and it can be disheartening to new residents. Bless your heart, for example, is often taken to mean that an individual is quite hopeless, or that they don’t have any chance with whatever it is that is negative or a struggle in the individual’s life. It’s a common phrase, but due to the fact that it can be twisted so many ways, it’s hard to tell if it’s going to be meant as kind or as an insult.

8. Football Focused

If someone isn’t really involved in the college football scene, then they’ll have a hard time finding anyone to have anything in common within a new city. Montgomery is heavy on football and the entire state is focused on this quite often. This means that someone moving into the state will not be as immersed in the culture surrounding this particular sport especially if they’re not someone who particularly enjoys the American football scene.

Montgomery residents can get quite aggressive about which football team they like best, and it’s not something extremely easy to understand or insert oneself into a conversation or start to connect with anybody whose entire personality or existence is focused on these games.

7. Excessive Golfing

As if the obsession with football wasn’t enough, there is also a high presence of golfing and golfers in Montgomery. While golfing isn’t anything to be ashamed of and is a great sport, the obsessive nature of the focus on these sports can get extremely exhausting and for someone who is new to the area and wants to settle down in a new place, it is a huge detriment to making relationships and feeling safe with their new neighbors and new environment.

6. Potential for Uncontrollable Pests

While Northern Alabama usually has more issues with cockroachesOpens in a new tab., Montgomery is not exempt from this kind of pest infestation. The usual ones and common pests seen at least are mosquitoes, bedbugs, cockroaches as well as spiders. These pests make living conditions unsafe in a variety of ways.

Mosquitoes are known to carry deadly diseases that can make people extremely sick and it’s hard to keep those bugs away since the humidity volume keeps those insects happy and healthy. The presence of a bedbug infestation means that the living conditions aren’t the greatest, and at best need to be completely scrapped to start fresh which can be extremely expensive.

5. Dangerous Wildlife

The wildlife of Montgomery isn’t one that anyone will get too close to, but the state does have a variety of dangerous wildlife that residents and new, potential residents of the area should be well aware of in order to keep themselves safe and happy.

Alligators are known to be in the area and have been known to bite people. Usually just staying away from them will keep things from becoming aggressive. The same goes for the black bears and the wild boars.

The eastern diamondback rattlesnake is the most venomous snake to be found in Alabama and as with any rattlesnake, it can be found in hot places, and being bit by one of these danger noodles will not be good for anyone involved.

The black widow is the most venomous spiderOpens in a new tab. found in Alabama, closely followed by the brown widow spider, as well as the brown recluse spider, and the black-footed yellow sac spider. All have less than pleasant side effects from being bitten and do require medical attention.

4. Public Transportation is Lacking

There isn’t a great way to get around Montgomery as the public transportationOpens in a new tab. is not well taken care of or advertised. This makes commuting a huge pain. There isn’t a reliable bus system, there are no tracks, and the ride-share services only recently got approved for the area.

3. Drivers and Commuting are Terrible

As mentioned before, drivers in Montgomery are terrible and generally don’t pay attention to their surroundings. For people out of state, this can be incredibly frustrating and due to the volume of people who own cars, the public transportation issue was never really looked at or resolved, which makes commuting a fresh hell.

2. Crime Rates are Not Great

The crime ratesOpens in a new tab. of Montgomery are higher than elsewhere. It’s an unsafe area and there are a variety of different crimes that frequent the area, including rapes, murders, and all the way down to petty pickpocketing and thievery. None of this constitutes as a safe city that someone could be comfortable with moving into.

1. Lower Income Area

The lower incomeOpens in a new tab. of Montgomery affects the city in many ways. There is less done about the resident’s well-being, the jobs are not the best paying since they can’t afford to be, and housing may be cheap and affordable, but it’s not the best quality. The roads aren’t as well taken care of as other places and it makes things like disaster cleanup and crime aftermath incredibly difficult.

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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