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Old 11-27-2011, 11:58 AM
 
7 posts, read 13,334 times
Reputation: 15

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Hi--We are considering relocating to Colorado Springs or vicinity because we are barely surviving here in Manhattan even with both of us working. The area seems to suit us because there is a lot of sunshine, it's closer to our families who are on the west coast, I assume there is a lot of biking since it's very outdoorsy (husband is a bike nut), and overall sounds like a good place for us.

I see online that the cost of living is estimated as half that in NYC. Can anyone give me real figures for what I could expect to pay for the following monthly bills? We have a family of four. Our twin boys are almost 7 years old.

The info I'm looking for:

Rent in the Old North area (academy schools) (currently paying $2150 rent)
Groceries: $1000-1200 (and this is eating as cheaply as we can)
Electric and gas (apartment, no heat included): $290
Cable/internet/phone: $200
Health insurance (we buy our own): $1500
Car insurance: We don't pay this, we don't own a car and take public transit. But we will need one there, so a ballpark figure for car insurance would be helpful.

Any other info that someone can give us would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 11-27-2011, 01:20 PM
 
20,315 posts, read 37,820,570 times
Reputation: 18105
Here's some info from a very recent posting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike from back east View Post
Here are actual prices we pay at King Sooper's, part of the Kroger chain.

- Whole Wheat Bread $1.99
- Gallon of 2% Milk $2.87
- Gallon of Regular Gas $3.39
- Banana's $.50/pound
- Bag of Cole Slaw $1.89
Look at padmapper.com for rentals in The Old North End (TONE) which is a lovely area. There isn't much for rent there right now and you need to beware of scammers on craigslist (I found one such scam when searching in TONE, it showed a house 15 miles away on Woodrock Path in Gleneagle).

We have a 3800 sq ft house and all of our utilities together don't come to $290 month, most homes here should be half that unless you get a large one.

We pay $150/month for cable/internet but no movie or sports packages.

Auto insurance about $1200/year for two cars.

Cost of living here should be way less than NYC.

TONE is in school district 11 (D11) which has some excellent schools in their mix. Consensus is D12, D8, D38 and D20 are our better districts on a district-wide basis, followed by D11 or D49, and most people will tell you to avoid D2. There are several national websites that have school ratings.

Where is work location? Commuting here is nothing like NYC, though the car rules, we have no subway and minimal buses.
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Last edited by Mike from back east; 11-27-2011 at 06:21 PM..
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Old 11-27-2011, 01:26 PM
 
5,008 posts, read 6,691,539 times
Reputation: 4517
Wait a minute, a gallon of gas is $2.59? Where is that?!

[ Moderator Edit: Good catch, thank you, it was a typo on my part and I've corrected it. ]

Last edited by Mike from back east; 11-27-2011 at 06:23 PM..
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Old 11-27-2011, 01:32 PM
 
7 posts, read 13,334 times
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Thanks for answering Mike! As I'm looking around, I am seeing that costs are really about half of what we pay here. We both telecommute, so we work from home. We can both keep our NYC jobs, which means we will bring our NYC salaries with us. We both freelance, so we can live anywhere. We realized that if we can afford to move and find the right spot, we can have a much better quality of life. Just for reference, we pay about $2 more per gallon of milk and about 50 cents more for break. Gas is close to $4/gallon.

We would probably only buy one car since my husband is a bike nut and rides it everywhere. So maybe $600/insurance then.

I can't figure out via the map what Old North is. Can you give me the boundaries of that area? I am a big fan of old houses/buildings with a lot of charm. I hate cheap modern flimsy structures. So I am guessing that would be a good area for me. I also like a walk a lot, and I love being able to go for a walk and get a cup of coffee somewhere. This is a NYC thing that I can do whenever I want and I know I will want to be able to do that wherever I live.

My poor husband is going to get hit with so much research when he finally has time to hear all about this! :-) I've been trying to let him know what I've found out, but he's been to busy lately. Soon.
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Old 11-27-2011, 02:05 PM
 
794 posts, read 1,495,411 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kathleenintransit View Post
Rent in the Old North area (academy schools) (currently paying $2150 rent)
Unless I am confusing something else, the Old North area and Academy schools are not congruent.

In the Academy School district:
Apartments for $1100/mo. plus, houses for an average of $1500/mo.
Take a look at Colorado Springs Real Estate - Official MLS Listings - PPAR.com - click on "rental listings". Here is one in the Academy School district that is available as of today: Colorado Springs Real Estate - Official MLS Listings - PPAR.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathleenintransit View Post
Groceries: $1000-1200 (and this is eating as cheaply as we can)
A very rough guess would be that most families your size spend under $900/mo. My wife and I spend less than $300/mo. on the two of us, and we don't scrimp, particularly, but we do not have expensive tastes either. It is impossible to answer without knowing your shopping habits. Here is the King Sooper website for their weekly ads: King Soopers - Find Stores - Store Locator

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathleenintransit View Post
Electric and gas (apartment, no heat included): $290
Entirely dependent upon your housing choice. A/C use is not so great except a few days each summer, but winter can get costly. I'll just say that most families of four get by on less than $3600 a year. Most a good deal less. Some for half that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathleenintransit View Post
Cable/internet/phone: $200
Again, too many variables, but there are plans for less than $100/mo

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathleenintransit View Post
Health insurance (we buy our own): $1500
You will need to call your own health insurer. I doubt it will change much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathleenintransit View Post
Car insurance: We don't pay this, we don't own a car and take public transit. But we will need one there, so a ballpark figure for car insurance would be helpful.
$1000 twice a year. Or maybe $250. One car or two? One driver or two? Full coverage or liability only? How much liability coverage? What is your driving history, if any? You see the problem? See if you can use the Yellow Pages on line to find an agent who will help you narrow it down.

This is going to be a major change of lifestyle. Many things you take for granted will be unavailable. On the other hand, things you never imagined will be commonplace. You can be accepted here as so many "locals" are from somewhere else themselves. However, and I say this with your best interests in mind, there are things about this area you will both love and hate, but either way no one here has the least interest in hearing about how they do it in New York. Good luck to you!
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Old 11-27-2011, 04:12 PM
 
7 posts, read 13,334 times
Reputation: 15
Arrby--

Thanks for the info. I'm curious as to why you would assume that I would be interested in telling people how things are done in New York! I assume you mean that I would be comparing Colorado Springs unfavorably. I am not one of those people who has never lived anywhere else but NYC. I have lived all over the West Coast, Arizona and Hawaii, but the last 15 years in NYC. I'm only giving NY prices so I can get a comparison. After all, if we are moving there for a better life, I need to be sure it is actually better! :-) It's very funny to me...when I moved to NYC, New Yorkers kept telling me what a shock it must be to me. The biggest shock I ever had in moving from one place to another was when we moved from Hawaii to Tucson. After that, I can take just about anything in stride.

Thanks again for the data. It's all helpful.
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:00 PM
 
794 posts, read 1,495,411 times
Reputation: 1163
Quote:
Originally Posted by kathleenintransit View Post
The biggest shock I ever had in moving from one place to another was when we moved from Hawaii to Tucson. After that, I can take just about anything in stride.
Good for you! I had a good friend who moved his family from the Ozarks to Hawaii. Even decades later he spoke of the experience as one that was almost surreal.

Please check you private messages. And again, good luck to your family in this new adventure.
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Old 11-27-2011, 05:45 PM
 
7 posts, read 13,334 times
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Thank you Arrby! Yes, Hawaii is different from anywhere else. It's also probably the only place in the US where a white person can live and find out how it feels to be a minority. The stories I could tell...
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Old 11-27-2011, 06:06 PM
 
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
2,139 posts, read 5,488,436 times
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You'll be so happy to hear, then, that CoS is mostly white-land.
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Old 11-27-2011, 08:17 PM
 
7 posts, read 13,334 times
Reputation: 15
Actually, that is one of the things that concerns me. I'm very used to a mix of people. I lived in LA for 10 years and now New York for 15 years. I can't imagine being in a city that is largely white. I'm sure I'd get used to it though, we do tend to adapt. :-)

What I meant by my comment is that it was an opportunity for me as a kid to find out what it feels like to be the odd person out. To be the only white kid in my class. To understand what it feels like not to be included. Those are experiences that, while not pleasant, do tend to teach you a lot.
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