What does it cost to live here?
Property values in Fortuna are on the rise; they've more than doubled since 2000, but are still well within affordable margins. Fortuna offers both luxury apartments and homes for rent at reasonable rental costs. Living in the city center is a more expensive choice, but for those who want to be close by, the outskirts of the town make a good choice.
Another option to consider is rent to own. Many of the homes in the area have that option, and if you aren't sure about committing until you've lived there for a while, it's a perfect compromise. Why not hole up in a one-bedroom apartment for rent for a while before you make your final decision about the place?
How long should I start looking before I make a decision?
Starting your search well in advance of your move is always a good idea; it gives you more time to find great deals on both rentals and purchases. Although Fortuna isn't one of the cities where houses immediately disappear from the market, that doesn't mean you shouldn't take your time. A rushed decision is usually a bad one. There are varied levels of homes and rental condos in Fortuna; some are large, beautifully designed, and cater to a more sophisticated lifestyle, while other homes are more functional in design -- but every bit as comfortable. Depending on what it is you're looking for, the search might take more time.
What do I need to successfully move in?
Make sure you have all the important documentation with you: credit history, proof of income, past rental history, etc. Both the real estate agencies and the independent landlords will require this sort of information.
The city is one big neighborhood in and of itself. The west side of the city borders the Eel River. To the east and north lies the Headwaters Forest Reserve, home to hundreds of acres of wilderness and beautiful, untouched redwood trees. The south of the town is met by the neighboring city of Alton. Property values don't vary too much, although homes on the west side are slightly higher in value due to their waterfront location and their closer proximity to the Pacific Ocean.
Fortuna really shines when it comes to that small-town lifestyle. The residents are proud of their history and their location, and celebrate it each year with a number of festivals. The Daffodil Festival is always a local favorite, although the Redwood AutoXpo is one of the largest auto shows in the entire state, attracting thousands of visitors each year. Other events include Apple Harvest, Hops in Humboldt, and even the Paddle to the Headwaters canoe race.
Most residents in the area drive anywhere they need to go. Public transportation isn't an overly popular option, as the infrastructure isn't readily designed for it.
As for entertainment, the options are nearly limitless. Many people enjoy jumping on Highway 101, locally known as the Redwood Highway, and simply driving. The scenery is absolutely breathtaking. Other people drive the seven or so miles to the Pacific Ocean and spend a day at the beach fishing, swimming, and more. Still others head east into the forests and hike any of the hundreds of trails that exist there.
Dining options are plentiful, but you won't find many chains here. Fortuna is home to local specialties like the Eel River Brewing Company, the Redwood Caf, Hot Brew, and many more. These institutions are local favorites where it's not uncommon to see the same set of regulars day in and day out.
No matter what side of Fortuna you live on, the entire area has that same friendly, hospitable feel to it. Newcomers will be welcomed.