Your Next Home: 2023’s Best Places to Live Near JBLM, Washington State

Are you or someone you know moving to JBLM in 2023? It’s a significant transition, and we want to ensure you have all the information you need to make the best decision for your new home. Whether you’re a military professional, a first-time homebuyer, or a downsizer, finding the right place to live near JBLM is crucial. This guide will help you uncover the top locations on both the north and south sides of JBLM, ensuring you’re well-prepared for this exciting chapter.


Understanding the Geography of JBLM

Before diving into the details, let’s get acquainted with Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM) and its surroundings. Located in Washington State, JBLM is a significant military installation known for its strategic importance and vibrant community. Situated in the heart of the Pacific Northwest, it offers unique living opportunities that cater to various preferences and lifestyles.


North Side of JBLM: Tacoma, Spanaway, and Puyallup

If you’re considering the north side of JBLM, your primary choices for residence include Tacoma, Spanaway, and Puyallup. Here’s a breakdown of these locations and what you can expect:

  • Tacoma:

    Tacoma is the largest city in Pierce County and offers diverse living options. Known for its vibrant culture, it’s perfect for those who want to be closer to Seattle, just 30 to 45 minutes away. Tacoma boasts an array of restaurants, parks, and cultural attractions, making it an excellent choice for families and professionals alike.

  • Spanaway:

    Spanaway, a peaceful suburban area, is ideal for those seeking a quieter environment. It’s a family-friendly community with parks, schools, and shopping centers. Commuting to JBLM from Spanaway is convenient and can be done within 20 minutes.

  • Puyallup:

    Puyallup, known for its rich agricultural history, offers a mix of suburban and rural living. The city is famous for its annual Washington State Fair and has a close-knit community feel. Puyallup provides excellent schools and easy access to JBLM, making it a top choice for families.


South Side of JBLM: Olympia, Lacey, Yelm, and More

On the south side of JBLM, you’ll find a range of attractive options, including Olympia, Lacey, Yelm, and other neighboring areas. Here’s a closer look at what these locations offer:

  • Olympia:

    Olympia, the capital of Washington State, is a thriving city with a unique blend of urban and natural attractions. Living in Olympia means you’re close to the state government, making it a suitable choice for those working in politics or seeking cultural experiences. With beautiful parks and access to Puget Sound, Olympia offers diverse recreational opportunities.

  • Lacey:

    Adjacent to Olympia, Lacey is another fantastic option for JBLM residents. It’s known for its friendly neighborhoods and excellent schools. Lacey’s location provides easy access to Olympia, JBLM, and the stunning Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge for outdoor enthusiasts.

  • Yelm:

    Yelm, located a bit further southeast, offers a more relaxed pace of life. It’s perfect for those who prefer a quieter, rural setting. Yelm is a tight-knit community with picturesque landscapes and easy access to JBLM.


What Truly Matters to You

Ultimately, the decision between the north and south sides of JBLM depends on your unique preferences and priorities. Here are some factors to consider when making your choice:

  • Proximity to Seattle: If you value being close to Seattle’s urban attractions, the north side may be your best bet.

Example: If you’re a professional who frequently travels to Seattle for work or leisure, residing on the north side can significantly reduce commute times and provide more convenient access to the city’s amenities.

  • Commute Time: Consider your daily commute to JBLM, especially if you’ll be working on the base.

Example: A shorter commute can mean more time spent with your family or pursuing hobbies. Assess how much time you’re willing to spend commuting and choose a location that aligns with your preferences.

  • Lifestyle Preferences: Think about the lifestyle you desire, whether it’s a bustling city or a quieter suburban or rural area.

Example: If you appreciate the energy and cultural diversity of city living, Tacoma might be the perfect fit. However, if you prefer a more serene environment with a small-town feel, the suburbs of Spanaway or Puyallup may be more appealing.

  • Family Needs: Evaluate school options, recreational activities, and community amenities for your family’s well-being.

Example: Families with children should research the quality of schools in their chosen area. Olympia, for instance, has excellent schools and numerous parks for family outings.

  • Outdoor Opportunities: Consider your proximity to natural attractions, parks, and outdoor adventures.

Example: If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, living near Olympia provides easy access to the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, perfect for hiking and birdwatching.



Moving to JBLM in 2023 is an exciting opportunity to explore the beauty of Washington State while serving your country. Whether you prefer the north side’s urban convenience or the south side’s serene landscapes, there’s a perfect place for you near JBLM. Keep in mind what truly matters to you and your family.

At Joe and Charity Slawter’s Live Well Home Group, we understand that finding the right home is a significant decision. We’re here to help you every step of the way, ensuring you make the most of your JBLM experience. With 30 experienced realtors under our guidance and in-depth knowledge of the local market, we can provide expert insights and personalized guidance to ensure you find your ideal home.

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to secure your dream home near JBLM. Reach out to us today, and let’s start your journey to your next home!


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