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Old 01-15-2015, 09:41 AM
 
304 posts, read 179,592 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark_3377 View Post

Also to consider are other factors like: home/rental prices, other prices in general, the fact that the wife will go back to school to get an RN (registered nurse) license

Mark
Az is saturated with RNs I am one myself, it does not have as many hospitals as schools put out every year, so unless its BSN and even then she will have a hard time getting a hospital job as a new grad. Options are long term care (old people home) home care, prisons and addicton/rehab facilities. After a year she should be able to get in a hospital but then its also seasonal snow birds come in October hospitals hiring once they leave they call people off or just get little hours. She should also think about injectables (botox e.t.c) as its always in demand in az. Dont want to scare you but just dealt with too many people who came and probably got something different then what they thought it would be. Good luck.
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Old 01-15-2015, 09:58 AM
wjj
 
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We have a second home in South Fort Myers that we use year round (go back and forth from BG) and we actually like the summers there. But if you do not have a pool, I can see where the summer might be hard to take. It generally does not get really hot down there. There are 3 pretty hot months, but even then, it is usually not extreme. The most recent annual daily temperature info I could find was for 2013. The highest temperature in Fort Myers that year was 94, and that happened only twice. Summers in Chicago can get much hotter than that for extended periods of time. It got down to 39 one day and there are several nights where it is in the 40s, but frost is rare. We have not seen frost in the 3 years we have been down there (got close on that 39 degree day). Even now, in January, it is usually in the 70s during the day with occasional 80s and 60s.

And in response to a poster up-thread, I do like swimming in the winter. Watching the Super Bowl from your pool can really focus your mind when deciding between Chicago and SWFL. That is what pool heaters are for.

Now that we have been going back and forth for 3 years we have a good handle on the difference in COL. What we have found is that the cost of goods and utilities overall is about the same as in Illinois, but the cost of services is much less. For example, I pay my landscape company in FL much less for 12 months than I pay my landscape company up here for 8 months. And my lot in FL is bigger. Good service people can be hard to find down there, but once you do find good service providers, you would be shocked at how cheap things can cost in FL vs IL. I find that when in SWFL, I hire people to do things I would normally do myself because the cost is so low. Of course, FL has no income or estate taxes and a low sales tax rate, so that is a huge difference. And real estate taxes down there come in around 1.0% and 1.25% of value vs many parts of Illinois where 2.5% to 3% is the norm. That is a huge chunk of change on a $400,000 house.

Depending where you go in FL, employment can be a challenge and pay rates are lower than around Chicago. The medical area seems to be the one place where there are consistently a lot of job opportunities. Schools are nowhere near what we are used to in suburban Chicago, so a big issue for those with kids.

I personally would not move to AZ. Too much moonscape and extreme heat. I prefer green environs and can deal with the low 90s for 3 months of the year. And as for California? It would drive me nuts and bankrupt me in pretty short order. California was never a consideration for us when deciding where to buy a second home in anticipation of retirement.
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Old 01-15-2015, 10:10 AM
 
397 posts, read 435,641 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lookout Kid View Post
I know you're burned from living in Illinois, but most people really do not take this in to strong consideration when choosing a place to live. Maybe they should. California is one place that is not really an improvement over Illinois in this regard.

In fact, there are still many states with higher state/local taxes than Illinois, as hard as that is for some to believe. They include (in order with New York being the worst in the nation):

1. New York
2. New Jersey
3. Connecticut
4. California
5. Wisconsin
6. Minnesota
7. Maryland
8. Rhode Island
9. Vermont
10. Pennsylvania
11. Massachusetts
12. Arkansas

And Illinois comes in at lucky 13. I think we will actually move further down the list with our new lower income tax rate that went in to effect for 2015. But yes, I think our debt problem all but guarantees that we will be in the top ten soon. I'd like to see more spending cuts, but it's likely we'll see tax increases as well.
I'm not "burned" from living in Illinois. I'm happy to be moving on mostly because of an exciting job opportunity. I don't hate Illinois and I'm sure that I will miss living here. But with that said, people should consider the overall "state of the state" if they are moving to find a better quality of life. Most of us move for a job or family. That's not the case with the OP so he can afford to be choosy and if you can choose why not choose a state that's better run than Illinois?

Also you'll note I advised him to stay away from the states that most Illinoisians (or whatever we are) dream about during the winter. Don't go to CA, AZ or FL.
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Old 01-15-2015, 10:12 AM
 
397 posts, read 435,641 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allsunny View Post
100% agree. Just relocated from Scottsdale to Chicago, by the way grew up in Bay Area. After 10 years in az could not stand it any longer. OP you commented on az winter yeah its great but my suggestion to you is go visit in the summer for a good month like July- August. And by the way summer there is NOT 3-4 month it hits 90 in may 100 in june -september , and stays above 90 till Halloween thats 6 month of above 90. It is not cheaper to live there, your property tax is lower but add association( as most homes is planed community) pool service year around, and landscaping ( dont see much of it in IL,) and you looking at 2-3k a year and puts you in same amount you pay for property tax in IL. Dont forget you AC bill.
Most of us living in the Chicago metro would rejoice if our property taxes were only $2-3K a year. Most middle income people here pay $5K to $10K a year.
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Old 01-15-2015, 10:14 AM
 
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Originally Posted by JTW2013 View Post
I'm not "burned" from living in Illinois.
We're all burned from living in Illinois. The cynicism towards government entities will stay with you.
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Old 01-15-2015, 10:23 AM
 
304 posts, read 179,592 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JTW2013 View Post
Most of us living in the Chicago metro would rejoice if our property taxes were only $2-3K a year. Most middle income people here pay $5K to $10K a year.
But that's my point you add that 2-3 k on top of your property taxes. association fee, pool maintenance, repainting the house every 5-7 years( as sun beats down on it) its averages same 5 k a year so its an illusion, same amount comes out of your pocket every year. I'm sure many people pay 2 k taxes like my mom with senior citizens tax freeze. My taxes were 4+k plus dont forget pools they break, filters, motors, heaters, popups.... plus AC units many homes have 2 units replacement cost 7k each lifespan 7-10 years. All I'm saying you have to consider all those when calculating costs you cant just look at taxes because its deceiving.

Last edited by allsunny; 01-15-2015 at 10:38 AM..
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Old 01-15-2015, 10:51 AM
 
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"Are you originally from Chicago?"

No but I've been here 13 years and before that had the same 4 seasons in Europe minus the humidity.

You may want to take a hard look at Denver. Parts of Denver remind me a lot of Chicago. However, the Winter here is nothing like Chicago. You get lots of snow, but it melts pretty quick and it's not uncommon to be snowing one week and then 60 and Sunny the next. You get a lot of nice sunny, warm Winter days in Denver, unlike Chitown where it gets cold and dark and stays that way until May.

I'll take a look at Denver because I know almost nothing about it, including weather.
I can vouch for 'cold and dark/cloudy until May' in Chicago. Depressing.


You may find that you end up missing Chicago. Chicago is one of the greatest cities on Earth! The only issue IMO is the weather and taxes. You will miss Chicago, the food, the lake, the awesome architecture, the sports, the camaraderie, etc.

I was just thinking about the fact I'll be missing Chicago. Sad that the pros don't outweigh the cons. If Chicago had San Diego's weather and Phoenix's taxes, everybody will be here. Thanks for your input.

Weather is a big factor in life, but as I like to say, the weather in prison is perfect, but it's not a place I'd want to live!
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Old 01-15-2015, 11:16 AM
 
251 posts, read 167,722 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allsunny View Post
But that's my point you add that 2-3 k on top of your property taxes. association fee, pool maintenance, repainting the house every 5-7 years( as sun beats down on it) its averages same 5 k a year so its an illusion, same amount comes out of your pocket every year. I'm sure many people pay 2 k taxes like my mom with senior citizens tax freeze. My taxes were 4+k plus dont forget pools they break, filters, motors, heaters, popups.... plus AC units many homes have 2 units replacement cost 7k each lifespan 7-10 years. All I'm saying you have to consider all those when calculating costs you cant just look at taxes because its deceiving.
It doesn't make much sense to take all of these expenses in AZ into account and act like there aren't any additional expenses in IL. TONS of middle class homes in the Chicago area are very old homes that need a lot of maintenance. My friend just had to spend a ton of money getting new siding for her bungalow. Places like FL or AZ have mostly newer homes. And what if you have a bad back and can't shovel snow (true for many people middle aged or older) you have to buy and maintain a good snow blower or pay someone to shovel every winter.

The A/C bill in AZ summer? Yes, and there's the heat bill in the Chicago winter. You need to have good insulation, good windows, and an efficient heating/cooling system either place. Either shell out the cash to have them installed or buy a newer home that already has these updates. Again newer homes are easier to come by in the south.

The association fees for your neighborhood pool? You'll probably have to pay to join a pool in the Chicago area. The cost may be higher in AZ/FL, but you'll get to use the pool a lot more of the year. And the pool will be in your neighborhood or in your backyard, not a drive away.

And one great thing about having a neighborhood association handle some maintenance type stuff on the homes or in the neighborhood is that you can often get a discount if you're promising a whole neighborhood of work.
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Old 01-15-2015, 11:54 AM
 
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Moving to better run state should be your #1 priority. However, there are definitely many places that are much better run and have better weather than Illinois.
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Old 01-15-2015, 11:58 AM
 
304 posts, read 179,592 times
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No just plain association fees they may not even have a pool but most homes have association and fees attached to that. Every place has maintenance that's is silly to think that there are no maintenance homes somewhere. My point is to inform OP about things specific to the area so they can do they own research and make informed decision so I'm not sure how it is pointless to include things I mentioned in account ... not really sure whats your point is..... but good luck OP hope whatever you decide you'll be happy there.
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