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Old 12-23-2012, 01:30 AM
 
Location: Florida
1,971 posts, read 2,373,600 times
Reputation: 1343

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Hi,

I have recently moved to the Silicon Valley, but thinking on maybe moving to Austin within a few years, maybe becouse of housing affordability. I dont own a house yet, planning to buy in a few years.
I know this was discussed on the forum before (I have read thrugh). Most people know that there are many (but not as many as in the SV) tech companies concentrated in the area. Also known that housing in Austin is much cheaper, a $1M SV home (quality, age, area, commute) is maybe $200k in Austin, as I see it from Zillow. I don't know the different areas of Austin.

So, how do other things like living/carreer compare between Austin and the Silicon Valley? (which one is better in each aspect)

Work:
- What is the Average commute look like in Austin (from a $200k home)? I mean distance/time, traffic jams, road conditions...
- What is the job security like for an engineer comparing to the Silicon Valley? I mean in the SV all tech companies seem to represent themself (many jobs to choose from). They fight for the available engineers, its like a "seller's market" on the job market.
- Level of challenge in jobs? In the SV I design hardware at the complexity that my previous employers have never seen.
- Salaries for engineers and non-engineers (family members)?
- Tech Companies are stable, not going into bankruptcy any time soon?

Life:
- Standard of living? What you can afford from what you earn. If I stay here then probably most of my future income will be spent on a small "cheap" old house at least 1 hour drive from work (if I can afford one at all).
- General enviroment? Meeting many educated people like in the SV.
- People's attitude, rudeness, niceness...
- Culture, open mindedness?
- Things to do in free time, places to go on weekends?
- Bad influences on children, like violance, drugs ...
- ugly areas to drive by every day, and unsafe areas?
- Weather? (I see Austin has real summers, while here in the SV summer-evenings are freezing. In july after work in the evening often 72F here which is cold) Is it good/bad?
- Feeling that you are in an important place, not in the middle of nowhere.
- Place feeling "american".
- Difference in values considered important?
- California is glorified by the movies and musicians, I dont know if it has any real value behind it, as opposing to for example Texas.
- Crowdedness feeling everywhere I go, like a car-mageddon.
- Any other important aspects?

Is it worth moving to Austin, is it worth staying in the SV?
One more thing, I have been to Florida, how does Austin/TX compare to that?
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Old 12-23-2012, 08:12 AM
 
Location: Central Texas
13,719 posts, read 29,115,028 times
Reputation: 9259
Austin's tech industry is scattered around Austin. Dell is in Round Rock. AMD and Freescale are in SW Austin. And there are software and silicon design companies all over. To me SV has the same situation, though people may tend to describe these companies as up and down 101 (Oracle in Redwood Shores, Apple in Cupertino, AMD in Sunnyvale, etc.).

I know more about software jobs than hardware jobs. Pay for skilled people here is very good. It is not difficult for a senior software developer to earn > $100K. I know many who earn much more than that. The software industry here is lots of small to medium companies, most are post startup. Some are California based companies who opened development offices here.

These jobs are different than the "IT jobs" many ask about here. Working for a company that makes a software or hardware product is not an stereotypical "IT job." Regular IT jobs do not pay as well because these skills are widely available.

I don't think tech companies here are any more or less stable than similar companies in SV. Some have been here a long time. Others are much newer. If you are skilled, I think you'll be able to work in Austin for a long time.
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Old 12-23-2012, 10:52 AM
 
Location: Volcano
12,971 posts, read 26,698,162 times
Reputation: 10705
Quote:
Originally Posted by buenos View Post
I know this was discussed on the forum before (I have read thrugh).
I'll be frank with you. Every question you asked has been answered before. Use the Search function to dig into the archives.

And I can say, having spent time both places, SV is far more frenetic than ATX.

Yup, a $200K Austin house could easily cost $1 mil or more in SV. ATX is more sane in every regard except for summer temperatures.
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Old 12-23-2012, 11:45 AM
 
2,627 posts, read 6,180,044 times
Reputation: 1228
I don't think that the $200k Austin area home is comparable to a $1 million Bay Area home. I think $250k compared to $700k would be more accurate with the Bay Area home being a bit smaller. The age of the homes and neighborhoods just don't match up well enough, but I think that most Bay Area people moving here would go with a home that is $250k or more in the Austin area.

With that said, I live in a $200k Round Rock/Cedar Park home and commute between 40 and 65 minutes each way every day depending on traffic. I see my family trying to get a bit closer in and will be in a $250k-ish house at some point. I lived in Santa Clara for a couple years and I'm familiar with the Bay Area.
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Old 12-23-2012, 01:11 PM
 
Location: Folsom, CA
522 posts, read 1,632,189 times
Reputation: 298
Quote:
Originally Posted by OpenD View Post
ATX is more sane in every regard except for summer temperatures.
Some categorize those living in Austin as placing value on the adjective "weird". That is a much more benign description than that attributed to those living in "Shallow Alto". You can't tell the net worth of Austinites by the car they drive or clothes they wear. In Silicon Valley, on the other hand, appearances are everything.
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Old 12-23-2012, 03:23 PM
 
Location: Volcano
12,971 posts, read 26,698,162 times
Reputation: 10705
Quote:
Originally Posted by sanmiguel View Post
Some categorize those living in Austin as placing value on the adjective "weird". That is a much more benign description than that attributed to those living in "Shallow Alto". You can't tell the net worth of Austinites by the car they drive or clothes they wear. In Silicon Valley, on the other hand, appearances are everything.
I'd say Austin is more relaxed about most things.
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Old 12-24-2012, 05:40 AM
 
51 posts, read 109,255 times
Reputation: 55
As a recent transplant from Bay area, I find Austin to be much more similar than I was expecting (overall cultural feel). Sometimes I forget that I am not in CA. The biggest cost differences are price of housing ($300K house in Austin would cost $800-900K there). Also, there is a huge savings in income tax (10% in CA vs nothing here)! It's like getting a 10% raise if you can keep the same job/pay. Otherwise, prices are mostly the same, maybe 10% cheaper for things like groceries, household items etc in TX.
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Old 12-24-2012, 06:44 AM
 
7,660 posts, read 13,827,489 times
Reputation: 4196
Quote:
Originally Posted by buenos View Post
Hi,

I have recently moved to the Silicon Valley, but thinking on maybe moving to Austin within a few years, maybe becouse of housing affordability. I dont own a house yet, planning to buy in a few years.
I know this was discussed on the forum before (I have read thrugh). Most people know that there are many (but not as many as in the SV) tech companies concentrated in the area. Also known that housing in Austin is much cheaper, a $1M SV home (quality, age, area, commute) is maybe $200k in Austin, as I see it from Zillow. I don't know the different areas of Austin.

So, how do other things like living/carreer compare between Austin and the Silicon Valley? (which one is better in each aspect)

Work:
- What is the Average commute look like in Austin (from a $200k home)? I mean distance/time, traffic jams, road conditions...

austin

- What is the job security like for an engineer comparing to the Silicon Valley? I mean in the SV all tech companies seem to represent themself (many jobs to choose from). They fight for the available engineers, its like a "seller's market" on the job market.

SV - if you are good

- Level of challenge in jobs? In the SV I design hardware at the complexity that my previous employers have never seen.

SV
- Salaries for engineers and non-engineers (family members)?
SV

- Tech Companies are stable, not going into bankruptcy any time soon?
SV
Life:
- Standard of living? What you can afford from what you earn. If I stay here then probably most of my future income will be spent on a small "cheap" old house at least 1 hour drive from work (if I can afford one at all).
- General enviroment? Meeting many educated people like in the SV.
SV

- People's attitude, rudeness, niceness...
TIE

- Culture, open mindedness?
TIE (liberals can be closed minded)

- Things to do in free time, places to go on weekends?
SV (close to napa, sf, mountains,ocean etc)

- Bad influences on children, like violance, drugs ...
AUS

- ugly areas to drive by every day, and unsafe areas?
AUS

- Weather? (I see Austin has real summers, while here in the SV summer-evenings are freezing. In july after work in the evening often 72F here which is cold) Is it good/bad?
SV

- Feeling that you are in an important place, not in the middle of nowhere.
SV

- Place feeling "american".
TIE

- Difference in values considered important?
SV is more intellectual, but snobby. People work long hours. Aus has more work life, not as materialistic. SV is the plastic surgery capital

- California is glorified by the movies and musicians, I dont know if it has any real value behind it, as opposing to for example Texas.
??

- Crowdedness feeling everywhere I go, like a car-mageddon.
AUS

- Any other important aspects?
SV feels more like empty suburbs after 9pm. Austin is like a sliver of SF and has more late night stuff
Austin schools are better than SV


Is it worth moving to Austin, is it worth staying in the SV?
I would stay in SV

One more thing, I have been to Florida, how does Austin/TX compare to that?
aus is better than fl.
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Old 12-24-2012, 09:22 AM
 
2,633 posts, read 6,092,433 times
Reputation: 2885
Quote:
Originally Posted by buenos View Post
Hi,

I have recently moved to the Silicon Valley, but thinking on maybe moving to Austin within a few years, maybe becouse of housing affordability. I dont own a house yet, planning to buy in a few years.
I know this was discussed on the forum before (I have read thrugh). Most people know that there are many (but not as many as in the SV) tech companies concentrated in the area. Also known that housing in Austin is much cheaper, a $1M SV home (quality, age, area, commute) is maybe $200k in Austin, as I see it from Zillow. I don't know the different areas of Austin.

So, how do other things like living/carreer compare between Austin and the Silicon Valley? (which one is better in each aspect)

Work:
- What is the Average commute look like in Austin (from a $200k home)? I mean distance/time, traffic jams, road conditions...
- What is the job security like for an engineer comparing to the Silicon Valley? I mean in the SV all tech companies seem to represent themself (many jobs to choose from). They fight for the available engineers, its like a "seller's market" on the job market.
- Level of challenge in jobs? In the SV I design hardware at the complexity that my previous employers have never seen.
- Salaries for engineers and non-engineers (family members)?
- Tech Companies are stable, not going into bankruptcy any time soon?

Life:
- Standard of living? What you can afford from what you earn. If I stay here then probably most of my future income will be spent on a small "cheap" old house at least 1 hour drive from work (if I can afford one at all).
- General enviroment? Meeting many educated people like in the SV.
- People's attitude, rudeness, niceness...
- Culture, open mindedness?
- Things to do in free time, places to go on weekends?
- Bad influences on children, like violance, drugs ...
- ugly areas to drive by every day, and unsafe areas?
- Weather? (I see Austin has real summers, while here in the SV summer-evenings are freezing. In july after work in the evening often 72F here which is cold) Is it good/bad?
- Feeling that you are in an important place, not in the middle of nowhere.
- Place feeling "american".
- Difference in values considered important?
- California is glorified by the movies and musicians, I dont know if it has any real value behind it, as opposing to for example Texas.
- Crowdedness feeling everywhere I go, like a car-mageddon.
- Any other important aspects?

Is it worth moving to Austin, is it worth staying in the SV?
One more thing, I have been to Florida, how does Austin/TX compare to that?
Work/Life balance in Austin is a bit more important than SV. You'll find stores closing earlier, etc. Salaries are lower in Austin, and the "$200K House" you're using as a comparison doesn't really exist - it's more like $250-$275 to get a real comp to SV neighborhoods, etc.

The weather is a HUGE difference. If you're like me and find 72F cold, you'll love it here. If 100F is unbearable, don't do it.

Definitely more of a family friendly environment here.

About 1/8th the number of BMW/Benz/Exotics - nobody gives a rat's what you drive, as long as the AC works.

You can get everything from crowded to extremely rurual in less than 30 minutes drive time.
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Old 12-24-2012, 02:46 PM
 
279 posts, read 1,117,484 times
Reputation: 111
Its cheaper here then California as far as some homes are concerned. You can find a beautiful 3000 sq ft home for under 300k if you wanted and of course you can easily go over that price.
Many tech and gaming companies are here in Austin way beyond Dell.
Ebay, Paypal, Apple, Zynga, EA Sports etc..do a search and you'll be amazed at you find and had no idea it was here.
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