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Anyone out there lived in both CA and FL recently or have any thoughts on the differences between the two? I am desperate for answers and this forum and it's participants seems pretty interesting. I've been agonizing for days on whether to stay in Sacramento (CA in general) or move to St. Petersburg / Tampa (FL in general) area. I moved to Sacramento from NYC last year for a lobbying job that now went away. The timing now is actually perfect for me to take the July bar exam and become a lawyer (hopefully) since lobbying wasn't as interesting or stable as I had hoped. Now I just need to decide if I will settle in Florida or California for most of the future. I DO NOT want to have to take the hellish bar exam more then once but you really need to take the exam in the state where you will be working. I need to make my decision NOW and here's what I've come up with:
No humidity and relatively nice winters depending on where you are (I don't dig cold)
More sunshine then FL
Way to high housing costs (I'd really rather own then rent)
Only 2 friends in San Fran and 1 in Sac and I'm finding it hard to connect to people and have no family in the area (I think I'm a bit NY abbrasive for these nice folks over here)
Big cities like Tampa have higher rents then Sac and on par with LA
Much lower housing costs to buy and property taxes seem similar to CA
Oppresive humidity in summer but beautiful winters (I'm kinda used to bad summers from NYC)
Less sun then in CA
A little bit of family in area and a cousin who's already offered to set me up with a guy (lol ) and I haven't met anyone in Sac since I've been here
Bigger Jewish population (Which I am, although I'm not AT ALL religious but really relate culturally )
FINALY, My last concern is with the job market. I would like to do Wills, Trusts, Estates law but I figure that both states are full of older folks and rich folks in general so I think the job market should be pretty much the same.
Have you posted this post in the Tampa/St. Pete boards? You may get some excellent feedback there too.
I can tell you that I lived in CA from 1981-1994 and I've now lived in FL from 2004-2007. It's really hard to compare the two. They are very different. I've learned in life to bloom where you are planted but I can't help but think I do not want to spend the rest of my life here in FL. There are some beautiful places all around the state but I think some of the negatives outweigh the positives.)
I'm not sure about Tampa but where I live in Orlando the job market isn't that great for professionals. As well, the pay scale is very low... yes, even for professionals. Before you make a drastic decision you should find out as much information as you can about the job market here for you in FL. And, I certainly wouldn't move without a job first. Not unless you've got disposable income to sustain you while you are searching. Real estate is less that CA but it has risen dramatically over the past few years. FL is experiencing a lot of growing pains with influx of people moving here. Infrastructure is a nightmare with traffic, construction and major car accidents every day. The humidity is unbearable, but everything is air conditioned. We have a pool so that helps ease the pain as well. Crime is also a major concern, at least here in the Orlando area. Mostly these things don't affect me because I live in a nice gated community, I have a short commute to work and I did land an ok job with a major corporation (half the salary and very menial).
Just put all your pros and cons on paper and weigh them out. There is no perfect place to live and really there is more to life than just the weather. Find the perfect job opportunity for you. In today's world most people don't stay in the same place forever. Things change, you change, life changes. When I moved away from CA, I absolutely hated it. Now we would go for the right opportunity.
Think about it.. have you really bloomed where you are planted there where you are? Join some women's organizations, get involved with community service. It's easy to meet people if you put yourself out there more.
Aside from the sunshine and vacation attraction CA vs FL is just apples and oranges.
California is a powerhouse economy with massive industrial, agricultural and service bases. California is also the most populous state in the country. California is home to at least 2 world-class cities (SF and LA), the technology hub of the world (Silicon Valley), the entertainment hub of the world, huge military presence in San Diego and the SF bay, a huge international port (Long Beach). California is a world-class, international center for business, commerce, and culture on par with the Eastern Seaboard.
I also think you should post over in the Fl section. I live in SE Florida. This area running from West Palm Beach through Boca Raton, Ft Lauderdale down to Miami is chock full of New Yorkers and other Northeasties! You will definitely make friends easily however it really is up to you to make this relocation decision. Don't depend on this site to answer this very important question for you.
I think parts of Florida (especially the area you are thinking) Clearwater-St Pete, Tampa area is much more laid back than East Coast Fl and definitely more laid back than California. More sun in Calif??? not sure about that. It is very sunny here.
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You'll find opportunities in both states with your skills, but what about geography and climate? Are these important to you? California offers far more variety than Florida, from blazing hot to gloomy cold, from flat land to alpine peaks and everything in-between. I would strongly disagree with our esteemed moderator, Sassberto, about "apples" vs "oranges" in comparing, contrasting the two states. (Sorry, Sassberto, no hard feelings I hope.) In keeping with the oranges/apples theme, I'll go with "oranges" for FL, but a "farmer's market" for CA.
Last edited by Winston Smith; 04-06-2007 at 12:21 AM..
Well...I just moved to Southern Cal a month ago from south florida. I was in Ft. Lauderdale but also visited Tampa/St. Pete....Its a very nice place and I really loved the coast..and the warm water...but...the summers are brutal..loads of humidity and rain almost daily...(albeit only for 15 minutes)...I am really loving it here...I'm in Ventura County (T.O.) and am adjusting well...good luck whatever you choose...but the humidity and the bugs are two huge things that made a big part of my decision!
Thousand Oaks is a great area! I lived in Ventura for 10 years and worked in Camarillo. Can't beat the weather in CA, that's for sure. One of the worst things is that cold Pacific water there, you will miss FL's beaches in that regard!
I love the diverse beauty of CA, especiall Northern Calif. I live in the small university town of Chico (just 1 1/2 hrs north of Sacramento), pop. app. 100K. We enjoy the cultural aspects of the university, the beauty of Bidwell Park (one of the largest municipal parks in the country, at over 3600 acres) and a wonderful art community. We're just a few hours from Tahoe, Mt. Shasta and the coast. Camping/hiking/skiing opportunities abound!
Thank you all for your responses. NOw how about traffic? Anyone have any thoughts on traffic around major metropolitan cities in Florida as opposed to that in California? I know the traffic around Sacramento is very mild and I love that, but I can't stand traffic around LA and San Fran and I've heard it's just as bad all the way down the coast. In NY, I lived right near the ocean and I miss that. If I stayed in CA I'd want to live on the coast. Hows the traffic their compare to traffic around major FL cities? Thanks!
wow....Interesting question...I think Southern California is 10X worse than south florida. Florida can get bad on I95 but if you avoid rush hour its pretty easy to get around. I moved to Southern Cal. 2 weeks ago and i've already experienced crazy traffic on the 101 and the 405...but fortunately I live and work in Ventura County and only have to deal with the traffic when I want to go somewhere. Its much tougher to time the traffic in LA...because it is pretty much all the time. I can't believe these people that live where I do and commute every day to L.A. ...insane how much time they spend in the car..I would never have moved here if I had to do any commuting. Anyway, hope the information helps!
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