Homes for Rent in Decatur, AL: What You Need to Know
There are many cities in America named Decatur and many more described as a “river city,” but there’s only one Decatur fondly called the River City. It’s located along the Tennessee River in northern Alabama.
As an industrial hub, the city has historically relied on two major transportation outlets – the Tennessee River and the Tuscumbia, Courtland and Decatur Railroad. Today, Decatur has a diverse economic base composed of big and small companies alike, including 12 Fortune 500 corporations such as Pepsi-Cola, Decatur Coca-Cola, Nucor Steel, and 3M. Other top employers include GE Appliances, United Launch Alliance, Gemstone Foods, Daikin America, and Wayne Farms Prepared Foods.
Cost of Living
Your dollar goes far in a city like Decatur, home to 54,445 people. Its cost of living rate, food, and housing costs are 7.9%, 8.8%, and 16.5 % lower than the national average, respectively. The median gross rent in Decatur is $645. The Yellowhammer State is known for low income tax, ranging from 2% to 5%. Statewide sales tax ranges from 4% to 11.50%.
Know Your Neighborhoods
Decatur, considered a suburb of Huntsville (26 miles away), is a great small city, according to residents. It boasts of Southern friendliness and excellent public schools. Other Huntsville suburbs with above-average schools include Hartselle and Priceville. They’re primarily residential communities known for their tranquility, so just don’t expect a wild nightlife.
The area used to be called Rhodes Ferry Landing, after Dr. Henry W. Rhodes, who operated a ferry across the Tennessee River in the 1810s. The name was changed to Decatur in June 1820, in honor of Stephen Decatur, a naval hero of the War of 1812. The Alabama legislature incorporated the city in 1826. Decatur grew rapidly after it became the eastern boundary of the first railroad line west of the Appalachian Mountains in 1836.
Things to Do in Decatur
The Tennessee River is an important part of outdoor recreation in the region. The 35,000-acre Wheeler Wildlife Refuge along the banks of the river provides a crucial habitat for migrating birds such as Canadian geese and red-tailed hawks. A wildlife observation tower and five hiking trails are excellent places to spot wildlife. Wheeler Lake, a manmade impoundment along the Tennessee River, is a popular destination for boating, fishing, hunting, and wildlife watching. The lake spans about 60 miles. The Tennessee Valley Authority completed the Wheeler Dam in 1936 for hydroelectric power generation and flood control.