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Moving To Gay North Dakota? Thing To Know Before Relocating Here As An LGBT Person.

Moving To Gay North Dakota? Thing To Know Before Relocating Here As An LGBT Person.

One of the most common thoughts you might have before relocating anywhere is how accepting the locals are towards the LGBTQ+ lifestyle. It is a very valid concern and something that sadly still needs to be considered in this day and age.

To help queer folx who are considering moving to Gay North Dakota, we have put together this guide from experts on the ground, considering the pros and cons of life here, discussing LGBT rights in North Dakota and whether North Dakota embraces our community.

We also take a look at the most gay-friendly cities in North Dakota and LGBT community organizations in North Dakota that you should be aware of!

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North Dakota, also known as The Peaceful Garden State, has some beautiful scenery, friendly people, and interesting wildlife, along with affordable homes, a low cost of living, low crime rates, and short commutes. All of which combine to explain the state’s current boom.

Of course, as someone in the LGBT community, you’re bound to have many more questions if you’re wondering whether or not North Dakota is right for you. The truth is that you will have to consider things like whether living in the state will be safe for you, whether there’s a gay community here you can be part of, and whether the state as a whole is welcoming for people like you. 

And – as you may have already guessed, North Dakota is quite conservative and doesn’t have the same level of LGBTQ+ visibility, representation, and acceptance as other more liberal states.

However, that doesn’t mean that people from our community cannot build lives for themselves in this beautiful state. There’s a growing and vibrant LGBTQ+ community to be unearthed here, as well as people that love and support the LGBTQ+ community. Not to mention the fabulous Fargo-Moorhead Pride Festival that celebrates and promotes the local+ community to look forward to annually.

Fargo-Moorhead Pride Festival
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Both South Dakota and North Dakota are considered to be relatively conservative states in terms of LGBTQ+ rights. Both states lack explicit statewide protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and same-sex marriage wasn’t legal in either state until the Supreme Court’s decision in 2015.

That being said, some cities and municipalities within the states have implemented their own non-discrimination ordinances and some have a more vibrant LGBTQ+ community. For example, Fargo in North Dakota, is considered to be more gay-friendly than other cities in the state. Additionally, Sioux Falls, in South Dakota, has a relatively active LGBTQ+ community and a number of LGBTQ+ organizations and events.

Moving To Gay north dakota Thing To Know Before Relocating Here As An LGBT Person.

It’s also important to note that laws and policies are not the only indicators of how welcoming a place is for LGBTQ+ people. Factors such as community attitudes, culture, and the presence of supportive resources also play a role in determining a location’s overall “gay-friendliness”.

To reduce the stress of your potential relocation, we recommend engaging a gay realtor in North Dakota early in the process to help you find your new perfect home there. They will have up-to-the-minute information on the best cities and areas for LGBT people and be able to match your needs to a neighborhood most suited to you.

You can just start with a no-obligation conversation, and if you decide to continue with your move to North Dakota – they will not only have your best interests at heart but also ensure you are treated with dignity and respect throughout the entire process.

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Highlights Of Moving To Gay North Dakota

It’s hard not to get enthusiastic about the unique and tempting proposition that moving to North Dakota presents – especially once you get chatting with residents and long-time locals in the know about all their state’s hidden gems and best-kept secrets. After all, this is why many chose to live here. 

Once you move here, you should quickly befriend locals, let them ‘spill the tea’ and then spend your free time discovering the best sights, food, nature and culture North Dakota has to offer. On top of this, thanks to an offbeat yet deeply engaged LGBT community – which congregates at a few fabulous queer hot spots – securing a relocation to North Dakota should allow you to meet local queer people with similar interests. 

We are certain locals will have many more to add, but to get you excited, here are just a few highlights to look forward to as you become North Dakota’s newest denizen.

North Dakota Is Tax Friendly

The truth is that no one wants to live in a location that heavily taxes them, and fortunately, North Dakota is one of the country’s most tax-friendly states. Local and sales tax averages in the state average at 6.7%, and even income tax has been dropping, so you don’t have to worry about all your money going into taxes.

In addition, the state is quite economically stable, so you can be sure that finances will work for you here.

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High Quality Of Life

Everyone wants to live in a state that will accord them a high quality of life, and the state is one of the nation’s best states to live in. If you’re wondering how this could be, you should know that it’s the little things in life that matter for a state to have a high quality of life.

This includes things like a sense of community, national parks that afford residents outdoor activities, and a healthy environment. If you’ve got young kids, you should know that the friendliness of the state will be perfect for you and them, ensuring that you live in a friendly community.

Plenty Of Job Opportunities

Want to move to find a new job? Well, North Dakota has some of the country’s lowest unemployment rates. Economic growth here is at an all-time high thanks to some of the state’s biggest industries like agriculture, oil, and gas.

Tech and manufacturing are also growing industries here and have provided hundreds of jobs of residents and transplants. The state is home to multicultural towns and cities with friendly neighbors, excellent dining opportunities, good schools, and growing art scenes.

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LGBTQ+ Rights In The USA

The laws governing lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people have altered considerably over time in the United States and vary from state to state. In many ways, LGBT rights are some of the best in the world – but the devil is in the detail and some places are much more hostile to queer life than others.

While same-sex marriage has been legal in every state since the landmark Obergefell v. Hodges ruling on June 26, 2015 (before Obergefell v. Hodges, same-sex marriage was legal in 36 states and Washington, D.C. ), LGBT people are still treated differently in different states – both societally and as inequality under the law.

Over half of all states still allow discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity/expression, while counties and cities within states often have distinct laws as well. While some states permit adoption by all couples, others forbid it for all unmarried couples.

This is all to say what most of us already know is that LGBT rights and equality differ greatly across the USA, and the specifics of family, marriage and anti-discrimination laws are different in every state.

Thus, while it is comforting to know that you can choose to marry whoever you love across the USA (and have it recognized as such) and are protected against hate crimes based on sexual orientation or gender identity (which can be punished under Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009), there are still many questions you will likely have about moving to North Dakota and what you can expect of LGBT life there.

LGBTQ+ Rights In The USA - LGBT Right In North Dakota

Does North Dakota Embrace The LGBTQ Community? 

ND’s treatment of its LGBTQ+ citizens has steadily improved over the last few years. Even so, its political climate still contains strong anti-LGBTQ attitudes. The number of LGBTQ-focused events, groups, and social gathering places in the state has increased as a result of its diversity celebration.

While there’s a lot that may attract your attention, the states month-long festivities are motivated by a need for better harmony, awareness, and equity for the LGBTQ+ community that calls the state home. Grand Forks and Fargo are some of the state’s most LGBTQ-friendly places. Fargo bears the unique honor of being home to North Dakota’s longest-running Pride. 

It was also the first city in the region to implement anti-discrimination laws protecting gay people. The state has a very high quality of life, well-developed industries utilizing natural resources, and a high employment rate.

However, even though the state is deeply red politically, it is not outright unfriendly to the LGBT population, although certain rural communities can be rather hostile. 

Based on where you reside in ND, being LGBT can be a varying experience for everyone. Smaller towns in the state have been known to be a little homophobic, although some larger cities are very accepting or at minimum, quite neutral.

If you’re single and think you might want to search for love or a long-term relationship, you might be a little disappointed because gay dating within the LGBT community in North Dakota has proved to be quite challenging.

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Is North Dakota An Expensive State To Move To?

In ND, living expenses are very reasonable. Even in the largest cities in ND, you may find affordable housing as well as affordable costs for basics such as utilities and food.  North Dakota has a roughly 2% lower cost of living than the rest of the country.

The most expensive city in ND is Bismarck, where the cost of living is 4% more expensive than North Dakota’s average and 1% more expensive than the average nationwide. Cities such as Grand Forks, have a cost of living that is 7% less than the national average and 5% lower than the state average.


Housing in ND is quite affordable, and one or two-bedroom apartment costs less than $1,000. The typical monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Fargo, the state’s largest city, is $780. This well-known, distinctive city is one of the least expensive in the country due to its low rents. Even more affordable solutions are available in smaller cities or towns around the state.

Food Costs

N.D’s food prices are higher than the country’s average, possibly as a result of the state’s isolation. The overall cost of groceries is 2% more than the national average. Each month, residents of the state spend between $230 and $270 on food. This equates to $2,800 to $3,300 each year.

Utility Expenses

Utilities like water and electricity are comparable to or lower than the U.S average. While coal-powered power plants generate more than half of the state’s electricity, N.D also uses renewable energy sources, including hydroelectricity and wind.


Although the cost of owning a car might vary greatly, many North Dakotan counties and cities provide public transportation. All counties in the state offer some type of public transportation, such as bus service. Other modes of transport systems and more regular services are typically seen in larger cities. For those in remote regions, however, there are additional rural routes available. 

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LGBTQ+ Community Organizations In North Dakota?

Wherever you live, it is essential that you support LGBT organizations in any way you can so that they can keep reaching out to and assisting other more vulnerable members of the community. After all, we are stronger when we work together, and each of us will likely have a time in our lives when we require a little extra support.

Thankfully, North Dakota has a supportive and diverse LGBTQ community, which has helped the state become more gay-friendly in recent years.

As a result, there are a variety of LGBT resources available to community members, their allies, friends, and families – and you ought to feel free to utilize them or consider giving your support as needed to keep your new home state moving forwards! They are also great places to meet new people and find your queer chosen family in Gay North Dakota.

Dakota Outright

Dakota OutRight serves the LGBTQIA2S+ community in central and western North Dakota through activism, connection, and visibility. The goal of Dakota OutRight is for LGBTQIA2S+ persons to live in an area that is equitable, and offers inclusion, and equality. 

The organization understands that the LGBTQIA2S+ community in North Dakota is not represented or served as it should. It aims to satisfy the needs of the community by cooperating with other like-minded groups and building solid ties.

They also value and honors every aspect of the community and places a high value on establishing and maintaining relationships that are characterized by honesty, openness, reliability, and integrity.

Magic City Equality

Magic City Equality informs both the LGBTQIA+ community the general public about LGBTQ2S+ news, culture, and issues that affect the community. Magic City Equality is a non-profit accredited with the State of North Dakota.

The organization aims to offer one-of-a-kind events that serve as a platform for outreach, advocacy, networking, leadership opportunities, and support services for LGBTQ2S+ individuals and their friends and families. 

LGBTQ+ Community Organizations In

Most Gay-Friendly Cities In North Dakota

In North Dakota, there are many wonderful areas to live in, but when relocating to LGBTQ North Dakota, you should be cognizant that there are a few cities and gaybourhoods that are nearer to the queer hubs of life. Knowing them will allow you to pull your U-Haul up to your new house in a gay-friendly neighborhood or town that is best suited to your needs.

If you’re a lesbian, gay, bisexualtransgender, or otherwise queer person seeking a welcoming neighborhood with facilities you’ll cherish, start with these top gay and gay-friendly North Dakota cities to discover your perfect new home, each with its distinct personality.

Give yourself enough time to acquaint yourself with North Dakota’s diverse personalities, and remember that there is no one perfect answer when it comes to the most gay-friendly places in North Dakota… and just because it does not make our list doesn’t necessarily make it a bad option.

We recommend speaking to a local LGBT real estate agent for a more detailed understanding of the best options today. Now, let’s take a look at where these fabulously gay-friendly cities in North Dakota are and why you might want to consider them!

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When most people think about Fargo, the first thing that crosses their mind is a white wasteland, wacky accents, and eccentric people. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.  Your expectations of Fargo couldn’t be further off from what the city truly is. 

The city is forward-thinking, hospitable, and enjoyable. There is also a big brewery culture here. Fargo holds a Pride festival with Moorhead, Minnesota, which is also its sister city over the Red River. The downtown area is of Fargo is bustling and has lots of hip local eateries and shops. Fargo is a small city with much to offer. 

The city restaurants are known to lean towards local ingredients utilized by local chefs in a small-town atmosphere to create some of the most delicious food you have ever tasted.

Fargo is also home to many coffeehouses and lots of local eateries that will appetize your taste buds. The city is an excellent choice for those who want to live in a place that’s a little far off from most of the conservative areas of the city. 

Fargo welcomes the LGBTQ community and is the hub of activity for communities such as Bismarck, Valley City, and Minot. While these locations also have LGBT populations and communities of their own, the combined area of Fargo/Moorhead is home to a much more visible LGBT community.

Even so, there aren’t many venues and hideouts for the LGBTQ community in these areas. The community, however, finds a way to come together by meeting in LGBT-friendly eateries and establishments.

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Grand Forks

Grand Forks offers different living experiences for almost everyone that has chosen to call this city home. Thanks to the presence of the University of North Dakota and policies by the local government, the city of Grand Forks has been very supportive of sexual and gender minorities. 

Most of the younger generation living in Grand Forks is accepting and welcoming to the LGBT community. However, the older generation isn’t as welcoming and accepting, and you might have some trouble with them. Despite the mixed atmosphere in this city, you will find a very supportive and welcoming LGBTQ community. 

Grand Forks is home to the state’s oldest advocacy group for sexuality, known as the Ten Percent Society. The organization hosts drag shows each month in East Grand Forks. There are also many other LGBTQ+ community organizations located in the city, such as North Dakota Women’s Network and Ruby River Society, both of which are very welcoming. 

In addition to this, you should also know that Grand Ford has cold weather most of the time, so you might find that dating and meeting new people can become quite a challenge thanks to the weather.

best gay-friendly cities in North Dakota - Grand Forks


The state capital of North Dakota is a medium-sized city located in Burleigh County. Through the years, there hasn’t been much growth in Bismarck in terms of new residents, but the city has maintained its population. The population here is very cosmopolitan, and most people are drawn to Bismarck or its safety, pleasant weather, and top-notch schools. 

There are also plenty of lucrative jobs in the city for those who wish to advance or change their careers once they relocate. Quite unsurprisingly, the unemployment rate here is less than the national average at 4.8%. Bismarck is very popular with tourists thanks to its galleries, movie theaters, and shops that are open all through the year. 

The town welcomes visitors who come all the way from Japan and Europe for the winter festival that gives way to a winter wonderland magic in the city. Bismarck Winter Carnival welcomes all to experience ice skating, snow sculptures, and so much more throughout the winter.

best gay-friendly cities in North Dakota - Bismarck

Finding Gay Realtors In North Dakota

When looking for the ideal realtor, why would you consider someone’s sexuality? This may seem strange at first, but there are several reasons why contacting a gay realtor in North Dakota is a great way to find your dream house.

After all, when it relates to one of life’s most significant transactions, it’s not unreasonable to expect fair, equal, and honest representation from someone who understands the queer community’s particular needs and wishes.

Furthermore, unfortunately, many people (up to a third of Americans) believe that our community does not deserve protection and dignity in housing, adoption, employment, and other areas of life.

So it’s no surprise that LGBT people who use mainstream realtors often describe feelings of discomfort, unnecessary trouble, unenthusiastic representation, or even antagonism or outright contempt.

Everyone deserves a pleasant, stress-free home buying or selling experience while being adequately represented, and this is why we feel you should hire a gay realtor to assist you in finding your future home.

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LGBTQ realtors are more likely to be familiar with the diverse communities in their area and know which ones may be best suited to you when looking for a home.

That’s not to say a heterosexual realtor isn’t capable, but they’ve probably never had to address many of the issues LGBT people face.

Rather than just being concerned with how bustling, fashionable, or up-and-coming a neighborhood is (or what it may appear like), gay realtors conduct extensive research into the neighborhoods in which they sell homes to ensure that clients are safe.

It used to be challenging to locate professional LGBT-friendly real estate agents in North Dakota, and it was virtually impossible to find one if you were relocating here from out of state and didn’t have access to a local referral.

You no longer have to search for a realtor without knowing whether or not they are accepting of others because you can use a list of gay, lesbian, and gay-friendly agents in North Dakota to do all of your homework for you.

Simply go to the page, and you’ll be presented with a free list of gay, lesbian, and gay-friendly agents who can help you with your relocation as well as other useful information like LGBT+friendly schools, shopping, storage firms, tradespeople, and more.

Read the biographies of LGBT real estate agents, then choose the one who is right for you. It’s critical that you find someone who will be by your side and support you and your family during one of life’s most exciting occasions.

Even better, there is no hidden motive, cost, or obligation whatsoever!

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