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Old 07-16-2007, 11:03 AM
 
Location: Denver, CO
1,278 posts, read 659,522 times
Reputation: 885

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Hey everyone,

I'm just about to finish up with my undergrad at UM in Ann Arbor, MI and I'm really interested in moving out west to Arizona. I've checked out a few areas on this site including Scottsdale, Phoenix, Tempe, and Mesa. Now obviously, being fresh out of school, I don't have the most financial resources. I'm looking for an affordable place to live. Scottsdale is ultimately the destination that I want to live, but I realize that I'll probably have to establish myself out there first before I can afford a place in that area. I know Tempe is a college town, so it is likely that I will find more affordable living in that area. I don't know much about Mesa and Phoenix. Coming from Ann Arbor, I'm really into the college town ambiance. I'd prefer to live in a more urban environment. I was hoping that some of you native Arizonans would be able to suggest affordable living arrangements in this general vicinity. Also, do you know of any agencies that specialize in helping people with long distance relocations? Something along the lines of helping to find jobs and housing would be great. If anybody could help me with this, I'd greatly appreciate it. Feel free to email me with suggestions as well (mikeborts@yahoo.com). Thanks!!!
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Old 07-16-2007, 11:23 AM
jco
 
Location: Austin
2,106 posts, read 4,585,233 times
Reputation: 1332
There are job assistance places, but honestly, we have such an awesome job market out here that it's easier to look at websites like careerbuilder.com and craiglist.org to find jobs.

You might want to find your job first because you could end up with a nightmare commute. Other cities build up, but we build out, so Phoenix metro area takes up a huge amount of land.

More affordable areas that are nice include Gilbert, parts of Chandler, Queen Creek, and Surprise. You wouldn't want to live in the east valley if you're working in NW Phoenix, and vv.
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Old 07-16-2007, 11:53 AM
 
Location: Inside the 101
1,538 posts, read 4,108,037 times
Reputation: 801
There are two options to save on your housing cost: 1) move to an outer suburb where houses are relatively inexpensive 2) rent for several years before buying a home. #1 is a popular chioice, but I think #2 is the better option, especially given your interest in a more urban lifestyle. If you end up in Surprise, Queen Creek, etc., you may find yourself facing a long commute and situated far from things a young college graduate is likely to enjoy.

Tempe does not feel like a college town in quite the same way as Ann Arbor. In some ways, it's more suburban, especially in the southern part. In other ways, it's more urban, with 30-story condo towers and light trail transit under construction. Central Phoenix -- Downtown, Midtown, Arcadia, etc. is probably also a good choice for you. Scottsdale is nice, but Tempe and Central Phoenix generally feel more authentic to me. That's largely a matter of personal taste, but if you do go for Scottsdale, you'll find a better atmosphere for the young college grad in the central portions of the city, not the far north, which is more suburban. Keep in mind that in all these locations the new spiffy condos can be expensive. It would probably be better to rent for a while, build up some savings while determining which areas you like best, and then buy a few years later. Premature home ownership is overrated and leads to sprawl on the outskirts of town.
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Old 07-16-2007, 12:16 PM
 
Location: Denver, CO
5,465 posts, read 14,241,712 times
Reputation: 4450
Noooo, not another recent college grad from Michigan!!! Just kidding, everybody is welcome here. Tempe and Scottsdale are only 5 miles apart, if you lived in Tempe you could easily drive to "Flops"dale-- as I call it-- anytime you want. Not all of Scottsdale is that expensive. If you are going to be renting, there are many affordable apartment complexes in South Scottsdale and North Tempe which will put you equidistant between the downtowns of both cities. Some of these are better than others-- make sure you shop around first before rushing into a lease. If you live in that area, off Scottsdale Rd between the Salt River and say, Indian School, you'll have all the conveniences you need and you'll be really close to the 202-- you should be able to commute to anywhere in the valley.
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