River Forest, IL
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Living in River Forest


River Forest is a somewhat small village located in the state of Illinois. With a population of 11,199 people and two constituent neighborhoods, River Forest is the 204th largest community in Illinois. Much of the housing stock in River Forest was built prior to World War II, making it one of the older and more historic villages in the country.

River Forest home prices are not only among the most expensive in Illinois, but River Forest real estate also consistently ranks among the most expensive in America.

River Forest is a decidedly white-collar village, with fully 93.45% of the workforce employed in white-collar jobs, well above the national average. Overall, River Forest is a village of professionals, managers, and sales and office workers. There are especially a lot of people living in River Forest who work in management occupations (14.71%), office and administrative support (12.04%), and sales jobs (10.70%).

Of important note, River Forest is also a village of artists. River Forest has more artists, designers and people working in media than 90% of the communities in America. This concentration of artists helps shape River Forest’s character.

One interesting thing about the economy is that relatively large numbers of people worked from their home: 9.46% of the workforce. While this number may seem small overall, as a fraction of the total workforce this is high compared to the rest of the county. These workers are often telecommuters who work in knowledge-based, white-collar professions. For example, Silicon Valley has large numbers of people who telecommute. Other at-home workers may be self-employed people who operate small businesses out of their homes.

Because there are quite a few people attending college in River Forest, it is thought of as a college town. To the benefit of the many students in the area, River Forest provides a number of services, amenities and opportunities geared towards their needs and activities.

Because of many things, River Forest is a great place for families with children to consider. First of all, many other families with children live here, making River Forest a place where both parents and children are more likely to develop social ties with other families, as well as find family-oriented services and community. The village’s good public school district and large population of college-educated adults provide an environment conducive to academic values. With regard to real estate, River Forest has a high rate of owner-occupied single family homes, which tends to reflect stability in the local community. Finally, River Forest’s overall crime rate is lower than average for the country.

In River Forest, however, the average commute to work is quite long. On average, people spend 31.13 minutes each day getting to work, which is significantly higher than the national average. One bright side is that local public transit is widely used, so it may be an option to avoid the headache of driving in the heavy traffic by leaving the car at home and taking transit. In addition, the village is also quite pedestrian-friendly, because many neighborhoods are very dense and have amenities close enough together that people find it feasible to get around on foot.

Even though River Forest is a smaller village, it has many people who hop on public transportation – mostly the train for their daily commute to work. Typically, these people are commuting to good jobs in the surrounding cities.

Do you have a 4-year college degree or graduate degree? If so, you may feel right at home in River Forest. 72.88% of adults here have a 4-year degree or graduate degree, whereas the national average for all cities and towns is just 21.84%.

The per capita income in River Forest in 2010 was $67,055, which is wealthy relative to Illinois and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $268,220 for a family of four.

River Forest is a very ethnically-diverse village. The people who call River Forest home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of River Forest residents report their race to be White, followed by Asian. Important ancestries of people in River Forest include German, Italian, English, and Polish.

The most common language spoken in River Forest is English. Other important languages spoken here include Spanish and Chinese.