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Old 07-06-2009, 01:39 AM
 
Location: Austin
1,477 posts, read 1,423,863 times
Reputation: 435

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I am not planning on moving there, but just am curious. My hippy friends love it, but always end up moving away from it for some reason. That tells you alot about it. I have also heard alot of bad things about it. That it seems great at first, but after you get to know it it kinda sucks. So natives give me the real deal.
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Old 07-06-2009, 05:22 PM
 
9 posts, read 17,904 times
Reputation: 10
I think it has it's good and bad like just about anyplace. Make no mistake Eugene is a drug city and most of it's problems are due to drugs directly. There's far to much meth (and the tweakers that go along with it) and quite a bit of heroin too. The people who are born and bread here are completely Xenaphobic and can make your life very unpleasant. The good news is about 1/3 of the population here are transplants such as yourself. Those people come here looking for a nice laid back lifestyle and if you seek them out you will have at least a few good friends. If I had it to do over again I would have moved elsewhere. I have found Portland a much nice place with nicer people but again you have all of the problems that comes along with a big city.
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Old 07-09-2009, 12:01 AM
 
Location: Eugene, OR
231 posts, read 709,626 times
Reputation: 223
The drug stories about Eugene are incredibly exaggerated in my experience. If you are not involved with drugs then you will not see or hear anything about them. 100% Nothing. So, for most readers who are considering Eugene, don't worry about the so-called drug problem unless that is something that always seems to follow you around...(maybe the problem is you?)

Sure, there are always some scary anecdotes from nice people who had their bikes stolen or houses broken into by druggies, but let's face it, that can happen anywhere. And, by the way, it almost always happens in one or two small areas in Eugene.

My take on Eugene:

It is a tremendous place to live if you have steady employment or an income source that is not related to your location (e.g. internet related or consulting or whatever). There is not much in the way of thriving industries here, so it's not a place to come to with the hope of finding a job later. You won't, and then you will get on the City-data forums and babble about how much you don't like Eugene. Just avoid all the trouble and time delay...don't come to Eugene unless you have employment/income set up in advance.

The natural beauty of the area is amazing!

The weather is rainy in the winter, but nothing as frightening as people describe it...and that is coming from a person (me) who does not like rain very much.

The selection of retail (let's face it, most people like to shop and buy things locally rather than driving an hour to some bigger city) in Eugene is more than sufficient. Plenty of the dreaded big box retailers which we all hate (and shop at), plus a number of nice local businesses which we all love (but don't really shop at regularly since their prices are high and quality/service is so so and hours of business are oddly short/unpredictable and prices are high...did I mention that their prices are high?).

The people range from white trash to black gold...errr...I mean, there are all types and certainly you can find your type if you actively search them out. OK, maybe not so many conservative republicans, but there are some of those too.

Houses are dirt cheap if you are from California, but somewhat expensive if you are from Texas or Idaho. Cheap homes that need lots of work go for $250K. Older homes (1960's) in slightly run down condition go for $290-$310. Nicer homes (1990's, 2000 sq ft) in beautiful move-in condition are $350K. Fancy, bigger homes with a view run $400-$600K. Anything more expensive than that price includes 10-20 acres with it. Add $100K to the above numbers if the home is very close to UO (e.g. College Hill or east of campus)
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Old 07-13-2009, 11:39 AM
 
6,034 posts, read 13,131,633 times
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I'm not a native... I've only known Eugene since 2003, but just wanted to say I agree with Mr. Eugenified's post. My husband and I are very clean and sober, raising good kids, we're hard-working type people... and the only times we've encountered questionable people (people who seem strung-out or people who smell like pot and look stoned) are when we've gone downtown. Even that seems better lately as they've really been trying to clean up that area and they've passed that controversial downtown ordinance. They also just opened up more jail beds so that should help, too.

We love it here. We love it so much that when we moved away for a year (husband took a promotion) we quickly realized what we had given up, and knew we had to come back. It took us a year, but we did and we plan to stay now for a long time.

The main concern, I think, is jobs. Lots of people here want good jobs but lack the training or education for them. Most of the people we meet here who have good jobs were hired from outside the city, most often from outside the state. This is actually what brought us here in the first place. The position my husband filled when we first arrived had been open for two years. No one here in the city was qualified to fill the position, though many had interviewed for the job... so the company had to begin looking elsewhere. The problem was, hardly anyone in larger cities outside of Oregon has ever heard of Eugene... so qualified people weren't exactly jumping at the chance to apply for the position. People assume Eugene is some little po-dunk hippie college town. My husband finally looked into it and we took the chance, and he's so glad he did! (And honestly, being from Texas and knowing how cool Austin, TX was back in the day when it was just a little nothing hippie college town helped us make our decision... if not for that we would probably not be here, either...)

Most of the natives here with good jobs are vets, educators, or work in the medical fields. OSU is a serious college and UofO has a fantastic program for careers in education. Or they have started their own businesses and done well. There is a huge entrepeneural spirit here, which is so great. But lots of people here graduate with a liberal arts degree, or come here without a degree at all or any training at all, and they find themselves unemployable. These are the people who have a hard time of it. Jobs are competitive and scarce, especially these days. It's also a small enough town where it's easier if you know somebody who can help you get your foot in the door. If you don't know anyone, you'll not have that advantage.

If it's quality of life you're after, you can certainly find it here. But I wouldn't come here without a job and savings/extra money lined up first.
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Old 07-14-2009, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Eugene, OR
231 posts, read 709,626 times
Reputation: 223
Quote:
Originally Posted by aint_no_sunshine View Post
...The people who are born and bread here are completely Xenaphobic and can make your life very unpleasant.
In my experience, the people of Eugene have no specific or unreasonable fear of Xena, The Warrior Princess.
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Old 07-15-2009, 02:56 AM
 
857 posts, read 1,412,904 times
Reputation: 186
Default Jobs In Advance Eugene Boulder Flagstaff Durango Albuquerque Santa Fe

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Eugenified View Post
It is a tremendous place to live if you have steady employment or an income source that is not related to your location (e.g. internet related or consulting or whatever). There is not much in the way of thriving industries here, so it's not a place to come to with the hope of finding a job later. You won't, and then you will get on the City-data forums and babble about how much you don't like Eugene. Just avoid all the trouble and time delay...don't come to Eugene unless you have employment/income set up in advance.

Thanks for this advice. That's the best post I've ever read on city-data and I'm not kidding. Why? I've learned the hard way in Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Flagstaff, and I wish someone like you had posted this advice before moving to these places.

You need to have a job in advance in Boulder, Durango, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Flagstaff, AZ. -- these are college / arts / outdoors towns where college students usually get all the jobs first, even if somebody older is more qualified. I will be starting my own business soon and then I can move anywhere.
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Old 07-25-2009, 01:29 PM
 
Location: Round Rock
18 posts, read 39,351 times
Reputation: 15
[quote=Tom Lane;9771299]
Thanks for this advice. That's the best post I've ever read on city-data and I'm not kidding. Why? I've learned the hard way in Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Flagstaff, and I wish someone like you had posted this advice before moving to these places.

You need to have a job in advance in Boulder, Durango, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Flagstaff, AZ. -- these are college / arts / outdoors towns where college students usually get all the jobs first, even if somebody older is more qualified. I will be starting my own business soon and then I can move anywhere.[/quote]

That's exactly what I'm considering. We're waiting for a buyer of our home in OC, Calif. We have had our sights on Austin, TX. But since June it has been hovering 100 degrees everyday in Austin. I have little desire to become an indoor person for at least 3 months of summer. Been in So Cal since 77 and raised in Long Island. So I remember rain, snow, humidity and other foul weather. I am now a biker and wish for riding weather at least most of the year. So while we wait for a buyer I often question my decision to head to the heat of Austin.

Our plan is start a coffee house business. Although Starbucks has been closing some 600 locations I feel our coffee house business can work. Making it more of a destination than a place for coffee on the way to work.

What has been an attraction to the Austin area was the economy and unemployment scene seems stronger than in many other regions. I like the reputation of being the "live music capital". It seems like there is a lot of nice homes to be had for under $200,000 so that after buying a home we'd still have money to start a business with a small nut every month.

I have been searching for that nirvana of decent weather and still good economy. Portland seems a little too wet for me. Austin too hot. Medford or Grants Pass, seems like a bigger window of dryer weather. But my worry is whether or not the economies are strong enogh for people to support a coffee house with a relaxed cool atmosphere with good coffee/espresso drinks, muffins and great pies.

My wife will be enrolled where ever we go to get her cosmetology license with hopes to land something in that. Later we love to open a salon ideally next to the coffee house with, again ideally, a pass through between them.

Any thoughts or feedback would be appreciated. Areas of interest would be somewhere between Eugene to the north to Medford to the south. Are there decent homes under $200k close enough to commerce to start and build a coffee house business??? The suburbs is fine with less than a 30 minute commute.
Ken
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Old 07-25-2009, 02:34 PM
 
Location: Eugene, OR
231 posts, read 709,626 times
Reputation: 223
I looked at Austin TX myself at one point, but eventually gave it the thumbs down (admittedly, I only visited once). For me, it was too hot, and there was too much traffic. It felt way too big city-ish to me, although I know it is not a big city. It also has that "suburban sprawl" vibe (very LA, by the way, so you will be accustomed to this) which I am not interested in anymore.

FYI, there really are no real suburbs in places like Eugene or Medford. You basically have the city, then outside of that is very spread out country houses/farms. So the idea to drive 30 minutes away in order to get cheaper housing doesn't really fit the situation up here.

Re Medford and Grants Pass: I don't know much about them other than driving through on my trips down to California. But they are both small cities...maybe too small for your business. Plus they really don't seem to have any central "reason to be", i.e. the towns don't have any central economic or cultural theme (people who are more familiar with those areas are welcome to correct me if I am wrong). On the other hand, Eugene is clearly a college town plus it is a key medical center for the surrounding area (really great hospital care is available in Eugene).

Your business idea in terms of Eugene: I would definitely focus on the area just west of UO's campus. There is an interesting coffee house on 13th just a few doors over from UO's extremely busy Starbucks. I can't remember the name of it now, but it is always quite filled with students and the like. They have a really large amount of square footage for a coffee house, yet they continue to pack 'em in each day. It might be worth checking out if you visit Eugene. Of course, you don't want to do the same thing as they do, but it is always useful to compare. (Personally, I think that area badly needs some college-y food such as a Woodstocks Pizza or a decent Chinese restaurant...there is NO good Chinese food in Eugene. Check out my website for some reviews of various restaurants in Eugene. You might get some ideas there too.)

Houses less than $200K? I doubt it in south Eugene. Of course, it depends on size (no matter what they say, size apparently does matter ) and location. The low end of the price range in south Eugene would be around $250K. Cheaper in the northerm end of town and definitely cheaper in neighboring Springfield (although it's a little grungy by Orange County CA standards).

Good luck!
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Old 07-25-2009, 06:54 PM
 
Location: Round Rock
18 posts, read 39,351 times
Reputation: 15
Mr Eugenified, thanks for taking the time to respond. I guess you would know what you are talking about. Very usefull!

Would appreaciate any other input with regards to Medford areas. Thanks in advance!
Ken
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Old 07-25-2009, 09:19 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington
2,317 posts, read 6,886,668 times
Reputation: 1701
Quote:
Originally Posted by kbell18001 View Post
That's exactly what I'm considering. We're waiting for a buyer of our home in OC, Calif. We have had our sights on Austin, TX. But since June it has been hovering 100 degrees everyday in Austin. I have little desire to become an indoor person for at least 3 months of summer. Been in So Cal since 77 and raised in Long Island. So I remember rain, snow, humidity and other foul weather. I am now a biker and wish for riding weather at least most of the year. So while we wait for a buyer I often question my decision to head to the heat of Austin.

Our plan is start a coffee house business. Although Starbucks has been closing some 600 locations I feel our coffee house business can work. Making it more of a destination than a place for coffee on the way to work.

What has been an attraction to the Austin area was the economy and unemployment scene seems stronger than in many other regions. I like the reputation of being the "live music capital". It seems like there is a lot of nice homes to be had for under $200,000 so that after buying a home we'd still have money to start a business with a small nut every month.

I have been searching for that nirvana of decent weather and still good economy. Portland seems a little too wet for me. Austin too hot. Medford or Grants Pass, seems like a bigger window of dryer weather. But my worry is whether or not the economies are strong enogh for people to support a coffee house with a relaxed cool atmosphere with good coffee/espresso drinks, muffins and great pies.

My wife will be enrolled where ever we go to get her cosmetology license with hopes to land something in that. Later we love to open a salon ideally next to the coffee house with, again ideally, a pass through between them.

Any thoughts or feedback would be appreciated. Areas of interest would be somewhere between Eugene to the north to Medford to the south. Are there decent homes under $200k close enough to commerce to start and build a coffee house business??? The suburbs is fine with less than a 30 minute commute.
Ken
Grants Pass has the most coffee houses and stands per capita of any city in the world, largely due to it being the home of the Dutch Bros coffee chain. Not a place to open a coffee house that would really thrive as the market is very saturated already. Medford might be able to support that kind of business as it is a larger city than Grants Pass, but it doesn't have the kind of culture that would really appreciate enough a coffee house like what you are proposing.

If you had something really unique to offer, I think Eugene would be the best place out of the three areas. Of course, it does have a damper clime... Its economy isn't great, but it is better than Southern Oregon.
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