After 12 years, I’m moving back to Illinois and making the transition from Billings, Montana where I’ve been since 2018.  

When people hear I’m leaving Big Sky Country for Rockford, many of them will immediately ask “why?”

They see the beauty of the landscape on the TV show Yellowstone, and yes, if you love to fish, hunt, ski, and/or live the ranch life, this is an ideal place to call home.  

Montana has unmatched natural beauty and it’s nice to look at, but when all of your family lives in the Midwest and your interests are going to Cubs and Bears games, attending concerts and stand-up comedy shows, then personally it’s not much of a “Treasure State.”  

Having no sales tax is a nice perk of living in Yellowstone County, Montana but they make it up in other ways like with property taxes. The cost of living out west has skyrocketed since the pandemic with many wanting to live away from big cities and work remotely.  

I’m one of the few residents who are leaving Montana to head back to Illinois and plan to buy a home somewhere in the Land of Lincoln, but the more time I’ve spent talking to people who live in the Stateline area near Rockford, many suggest living across the border in the land of Cheeseheads. 

When we asked "which state would you rather live in, Illinois or Wisconsin, and why," here are some of the responses we received: 

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If you could live on either side of the Stateline, which would you choose? Illinois or Wisconsin?

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