Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by jsbarone, Jun 18, 2008.

  1. jsbarone macrumors regular

    May 8, 2007
    Hey Guys,

    I'm married with two kids, and am looking into moving out of Northern California in search of a better life. Things are very expensive here, and the quality of life is low. I've been considering Portland, Oregon for a variety of reasons. My Wife and I like it there, but the weather is kind of a put off. Can you guys recommend anywhere else to live that's similar and affordable? Also, if anyone from the UK is reading is quality of life there? An out of country move is also a possibility.
  2. taylorwilsdon macrumors 68000


    Nov 16, 2006
    New York City
    This seems like a huge, fairly rash decision. I think it would be in your best interests to take a step back and really put things in perspective. If your kids are young (school age), uprooting is not going to do them any good. Will you have a job where you move? Will you have your friends and family where you move?

    I'm from Seattle but the weather is similar to Portland, and I can say happily that I'll be headed your direct (California) as soon as I can. Different strokes for different folks I guess, but I couldn't imagine raising my family here. Its a nice place to live but borderline depressing based on how dark and grey it is most of the year.
  3. Stampyhead macrumors 68020


    Sep 3, 2004
    London, UK
    Kids are more resilient than you think. They can easily get used to a new school and find new friends. The job thing is a valid argument, but I think we should treat the OP like an adult, give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he's thought of these things already.
    In my experience costal states tend to be more expensive while you will find more affordable places to live as you move farther inland. You can find affordable housing in Nebraska, Missouri and Ohio (to name a few where I have lived) and the job situation will just depend on what you do for a living.
    As far as moving to the UK, I am doing that in the fall so I have been looking into it quite a bit and spending time there getting used to it. The quality of living is good there but everything is at least twice as expensive as the most expensive place in the U.S. Food prices are exorbitant and gasoline is upwards of $8/gallon. A small family home will run you upwards of £250,000. Yet for most jobs the salary is not much more than what you would make over here. Plus, unless you work in some highly skilled and highly sought-after job you'll have a hard time getting permission to work there. If you really want to move out of the country (and who wouldn't?) I would take a look at Canada. It's a beautiful country with a high quality of living.
  4. jsbarone thread starter macrumors regular

    May 8, 2007
    My kids are 20mos and 5mos, so no worry about relocating them. We've been thinking about moving for the better part of three years---trust me, California is *not* a good place to raise a family---at least not here in Northern California. The weather may be good for most of the year, but the quality of life outweighs that by far. No friends or family worth staying here for, and we have enough money to get us through a few months there while I find a job. Advice on moving wasn't really what I was looking for---mostly just good places to live.
  5. adk macrumors 68000


    Nov 11, 2005
    Stuck in the middle with you
    What are your criteria as far as what you're looking for? Are you most worried about weather and climate or are you more interested in finding the best place to raise a family? I would argue that the midwest would be a great place to raise a family and is pretty affordable, but it obviously gets COLD in the winter. Minneapolis is a fantastic city, but I'd suggest spending a week there in January before making a commitment to live there.
  6. jhawk2 macrumors member


    Jun 14, 2008
    2 words: Spokane Washington! It is the best place! Weather is nice, People are nice...... I cant begin to describe it!
  7. mcarnes macrumors 68000


    Mar 14, 2004
    USA! USA!
    I'm in Portland. Lived here all my life. Any Q's, just ask.
  8. tMac85 macrumors 65816


    Sep 15, 2007
    in a great place
    Asheville Or Hendersonville North Carolina. Great State Great People Affordable Living, great schools, low cost on food. Charlotte or Raleigh are of the top 10 cities to live in in the US. BOTH in North Carolina.

    oh and i live here ( hendersonville)
  9. Osarkon macrumors 68020


    Aug 30, 2006
    I wouldn't move to the UK. This place is awful to live in at the moment. Fuel prices are sky high, taxes are sky high, can't say the UK has much going for it at the moment...
  10. wordmunger macrumors 603


    Sep 3, 2003
    North Carolina
    Asheville is a nice town and similar to Portland in some ways. Also I'd guess quite a bit cheaper. Whether the weather is nicer is a matter of opinion, though -- it gets pretty hot in the summer, by West Coast standards.

    I live near Charlotte and I have to say I much prefer Seattle where I grew up. But it's definitely cheaper here!

    My relatives from Portland say it's not as rainy as Seattle....

    The least expensive places to live will be inland -- Missouri, Iowa, Texas, Kansas. But of course salaries are lower there too.
  11. tMac85 macrumors 65816


    Sep 15, 2007
    in a great place
    Average Temp in Asheville in the summer 76. right now its 71.
  12. jsbarone thread starter macrumors regular

    May 8, 2007
    Thanks for all of the replies.

    Sounds like the UK isn't for us---we're both just sick of American politics and social climate. We were hoping to move somewhere Free College and Health Care is a bonus too.

    I'll put things in perspective by describing myself---maybe it'll help with your recommendations. I'm 24, Agnostic and work in IT. I've lived in California all my life, and would prefer to live in a coastal state. The idea of completely changing everything and moving to Canada/UK/France is very attractive to me---why, I don't know...probably the grass is greener scenario.

    Weather isn't too important to me, but it would be nice to have it sunny more often than rainy. Price is important---I want to be able to buy a house on 80k or less joint income. I love culture and things to do, so a large city is nice. Schools are important because I want my kids to get the best education possible. Crime also needs to be low.

    Basically, Portland is the city for us but the rain is holding us back. I've also heard that the job market isn't super hot.
  13. wordmunger macrumors 603


    Sep 3, 2003
    North Carolina
    Yeah, but that includes temp at 3 a.m.

    The average max in August is 82.

    In Seattle it's 75.

    But if the OP is looking for something more "progressive" than Seattle, N.C. is not his place. Maybe Vermont. More likely Canada.
  14. yojitani macrumors 68000


    Apr 28, 2005
    An octopus's garden
    The weather is terrible in the UK. If you are worried about Portland, then forget Cornwall. Don't move to the mid-west. The hype about the quality of living here is just hype. I'd swap places with you in a heartbeat!

    Ever thought of Australia? Most Aussies I know actually like it there, which is more than can be said for many other nationalities.
  15. iJohnHenry macrumors P6


    Mar 22, 2008
    On tenterhooks
    If you are strong in IT, then check-out Vancouver.

    Universal Health Care, higher taxes ... yes, but you get nothing for nothing.

    Lots of Pacific Rim money flowing into Vancouver right now.

    And a much better environment to raise your children in.

  16. c073186 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 2, 2007
    If you enjoy hot, humid summers and cold winters with about four good weather weeks out of the year, move to Wisconsin.
  17. Melrose Suspended


    Dec 12, 2007
    If you move to Seattle, let me know what this place is like. I've always wanted to check it out (well, along with a million other things in Seattle)
  18. Keebler macrumors 68030

    Jun 20, 2005
    well, i'm Canadian so I love my country. I guess BC would have similar (but not quite the same) weather as CA.
  19. Deefuzz macrumors 6502a


    Jan 27, 2004
    St. Louis, MO
    Ignore suggestions of moving to the midwest. I live in Missouri, moved to this area from California around 16 years ago and I am still longing to move back.

    You definitely wouldn't be happy out here.
  20. tsice19 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 16, 2008
  21. 63dot macrumors 603


    Jun 12, 2006
    i too live in northern cal (just far enough from sf and sj to squeeze any culture out) and the cost of living is high in the sf range but there is a serious lack of good jobs (especially if you are educated), and gas at $4.65, and underwhelming public transportation has made my wife and i consider vancouver, bc...sometimes i hear one too many stories about a university of california graduate who happens to live here that has to work an almost minimum wage job at a strip mall

    people who want a fulfilling job that pays them what they are worth often have to commute two hours a day each way, and these days, that's crazy

    there was a time when high earners left the inner city and moved out to distant and safe suburbs, but gas has changed all that...and those once safe suburbs are not as safe anymore

    pick an area that fits your values, your skills, and your pocketbook
  22. egor macrumors regular

    Jun 3, 2004
    I'm from/in the UK. As others have said it's not really to be recommended, we've got social problems in a country which isn't neccesarily diverse enough to get away from them. I suppose everyone is normally negative about where they live though. As someone who will be doing a Computer Science degree soon I've heard alot about Canada's demand for techies and to be honest it looks alot more scenic than the best the UK has to offer. Also piping hot in summer in some places, if that's what you want.

    I can think of some plusses for the UK (in comparison with the US):

    1) A more focussed education, not neccesarily that much better (if better at all), but I believe by the time you're 16 you shouldn't be studying more than three subjects and at university the majors/minors system sounds silly... you should have a well rounded education by then.

    2) Public transport, lets not kid ourselves here... we're miles behind other parts of the world, but you don't neccesarily have to own a car depending on where you live and what you do.

    3) No death penalty and a justice system which is widely regarded as being more meticulous.

    That aside (and point number 3 depends on personal preference) I can't recommend it.

    p.s. I moved between cities and countries multiple times when I was growing up, its not an issue.
  23. The Doctor macrumors member

    The Doctor

    Jun 19, 2008
    Chestnut Ridge, NY
    i have a little perspective on your situation... i am originally from bergen county, nj... i moved to southern ca about 2 years ago... it was horrible... the job market is terrible, the people are terrible, there is no culture... there is no middle class... its just poor people and rich people... anyway, i could go on forever about why i do not like southern ca... i did love the weather, but i really missed having seasons... but my main reason for leaving was that we are getting ready to start a family, and as you said, ca is not a good place right now to raise a family... so i suggest living around nyc... bergen county nj and rockland county ny are nice... long island can be nice, brooklyn is a good time... i would rather raise a family in any of those places than ca... and they are all signifigantly cheaper than sf... they are not cheap like the midwest, but you get to be by the best city in the world, and on the coast... anyway, i have been back here for two weeks, and i am so happy with it... i already have a job... and i am making way more than i was settling for in ca... the weather isnt fantastic, but it doesnt suck either... i also think that the north east is way more europe like than the southwest...
  24. adroit macrumors 6502


    Sep 28, 2005
    Victoria, BC
    I agree that Vancouver is probably a good fit. But there is no way he's going to be able to afford to buy a house in Vancouver with 80k income though. Unless the OP wants to live in Abbortford and commute or have some really big down payment.
  25. tkidBOSTON macrumors 6502a


    Aug 14, 2005
    The Hub of the Universe
    Austin TX

    Doesn't fit in what youre looking for weatherwise but it might be a good fit.

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