Also, the Dakota Dunes area in North Sioux City, SD has homes from $160,000 to $1 million. Because of last summer's flood a person should be careful when buying here and in the nearby Wynstone development and make sure any water damage has been repaired and that there is adequate sump hole drainage. Also, ask about the requirement of flood insurance. The entire development is built on sand dunes along the Missouri River. There are several reasons for buying in The Dunes, including: SD has no state individual income tax (but makes up for that with higher property taxes). The area has an ample number of medical offices as well as a surgery center, a few restaurants, banks, convenience store, coffee shop and brokerage firms. There is a private golf course and a nice bike path in the community. The nearest grocery store is across I-29 in the Riverside area of Iowa.
North of downtown Sioux City (north of 20th St. or so) the homes are mostly older, but well-built. Some of these homes were built 100+ years ago and feature architectually classic and beautiful designs. The northern neighborhoods are safe and near shopping, grocery stores, parks, a golf course. Property taxes here are higher than the west side and Morningside areas.
The west side of Sioux City has some good neighborhoods, but you'll have to search for them. This was one of the oldest residential areas in town, but a lot of the homes have fallen into disrepair and the crime rate is generally higher in this area. However, there are several neighborhoods on the west side where the homes are well-kept and are made up of a diverse residential population from young families to seniors. As I said, be sure to search the west side carefully and do your research on neighborhood you are considering buying in.
For me, the best neighborhood in all of Sioux City is the Morningside area. Generally, this area lies south of Gordon Drive, bordered by Business 75 on the west, Hwy 75 and 20 bypass on the east and Sergeant Road on the south. There are plenty of schools, from elementary through East High School. Lying in the middle of the neighborhood is Morningside College, a private four-year institution owned by the United Methodist Church. This area, like many others in Sioux City is hilly. The far south side of the area is bordered by the Southern Hills Mall and Lakeport Crossing, a large shopping center with many free-standing chain stores and a restaurant row. Morningside Avenue runs through the area and has many independent stores, taverns, health professionals, banks and churches on it. There is also a branch of the Sioux City Public Library in the middle of the neighborhood. Nearly every other part of Sioux City is accessible within 15-20 minutes from Morningside. The homes range from older homes built in the early 1900s to newer ones on the far south side built in the last decade. Buyers will find Craftsmen bungalow, four-square, Queen Anne, 50s-60s ramblers, Cape Cod and more classic designs in this area. Sioux City bus transportation is fairly accessible from most of the central and southern Morningside area. You can find fixer-uppers with good bones from $65,000 to well-maintained and modernized Craftsmen bungalows for $100,000 or less.
Of course, "good" is in the eye of the beholder, and others on this page may have their own opinions.For example, there is also South Sioux City, NE and Sergeant Bluff, IA, which have nice neighborhoods with houses priced along a spectrum of mid-$70,000 to $200,000+. That said, you are best served by finding a good "buyer's" real estate agent who can educate you on the plusses and minuses of the various areas. Also, be sure to ask people you become acquainted with. Finally, take the time to drive through all the myriad neighborhoods in Sioux City to see for yourself what feels comfortable. A word of warning: the city is layed out along a bend in the Missouri River and the street platting doesn't seem to follow a rational pattern. But with some persistence, MapQuest, a good, detailed city map and/or a knowledgeable guide you will soon find yourself getting comfortable with driving the streets.