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Old 05-04-2013, 07:40 AM
 
Location: South Beach and DT Raleigh
11,810 posts, read 18,810,735 times
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Regarding the original post, I always love how people want great public transportation but low taxes.
Nothing's free.
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Old 05-04-2013, 08:24 AM
 
Location: Upper West Side, Manhattan, NYC
14,798 posts, read 19,024,140 times
Reputation: 6805
Quote:
Originally Posted by neinei876 View Post
Thanks Marothisu for all the links! I'll watch the youtube video and maybe a few others once I get home.

You can definitely find a $500-$650/month apartment in Fresno but more likely in shady areas with terrible schools. Fresno and possibly most of the Central Valley is cheaper compared to the rest of CA. I'm a bit surprised that some ads for apartments on Craigslist in Chicago say that heat is included. It's always a given here, but I guess it depends on how old the building is in Chicago? I know the winters are super cold there so maybe that's why it's not always given but these things I'll have to ask each apartment complex... I don't like the cold but I don't mind the snow. As long as I have a warm summer, I think I'll be okay. Fresno heat is a bit too much sometimes (triple digits all day every day).
NP. Makes sense about Fresno. I guess that's pretty much the same you go anywhere. Yeah, some older buildings won't "include" heat. That means they don't pay for it and you have to pay for it. Typically, I would look for any place that in the least pays for heat AND gas (if applicable). The nicer type of place you get, the more they'll pay for you. Some of the luxury high rises will pay all of your utilities included in rent. My building only makes me pay electric.

Every single apartment will have heat. I'm pretty certain it's a law since it gets cold in the winter...people could die without it. So don't worry, but again...if they pay for heat AND gas, that's a good start.

Quote:
I really hope I can visit before making a move so I can get a feel for the place. So I can personally see which areas I feel safe in and which I want to avoid since it all depends on the perception of the individual. I am definitely looking at the areas you and people on other forums have listed... it seems to be pretty much the same areas, which is reassuring.
Yeah, that's what I would do. I moved here without visiting, but I also had a job accepted before I moved here, so it was a bit different I guess. Really, really, really had to do my homework. With anything, I wouldn't move anywhere without a job lined up, or without a bunch of money in case. The last thing you want to do is be living in a place with no source of income you know?

Quote:
According to just a google search on unemployment rates, Chicago is a lot better for me than Fresno in all areas. SF Bay has a lower unemployment rate than Chicago but it's much more expensive if you're living in the city and I still want to go someplace outside of CA.
I knew Fresno had a low unemployment percentage, but didn't know it was that low. Chicago is basically like...if you have a college degree and aren't too far removed in whatever you had a college degree in, or something else...it shouldn't be that hard to find a job as companies are beginning to hire again and expand (not all though).

Quote:
This is very exciting and scary at the same time. Thanks again for all the advice and opinions.
I know exactly how you feel...lol...and again, I wouldn't move anywhere without a job or a lot of money saved BUT yeah, if you can visit a place or two - highly recommend that.
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Old 05-04-2013, 08:26 AM
 
Location: Upper West Side, Manhattan, NYC
14,798 posts, read 19,024,140 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neinei876 View Post
Thanks so much for the Domu website! It looks so useful and much better than craigslist imo.
Craigslist is kind of shady. Some of the stuff on there is definitely real - my girlfriend found a bunch of postings on CL last year and I personally went with her and looked at the apartments, but definitely scams no matter where you go and no matter what location. Domu is a better website just from a usability perspective and I don't think there's a lot of scams on it at all. My gf's place was actually found on Domu.

Another good site is the Chicago Reader's site, which is a magazine/newspaper in Chicago. They have a classifieds section for rentals on their site. It's hard to tell there though because a bunch of listings have no images. It's a little easier to trust something right off the bat when it has images with it..
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:48 PM
 
Location: Fresno, CA
88 posts, read 106,851 times
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rnc2mbfl, maybe I didn't word myself well. I don't expect to pay nothing in taxes. I know that CA has one of the highest income tax rates, along with NY, so I was hoping to find a city that had lower rates and good transit. If a city like that didn't exist, I would choose to pay higher taxes for better public transit. I would just make sure my new job pays better.

Marothisu, I totally agree with on Craigslist and thanks for the tip on Chicago Reader. I read about it around the forums before as well. I, too, become hesitant when an ad doesn't have a picture. Good to know about the heating and gas being included. I've known gas was more expensive than electricity and I'll keep my eye out on places that include both. I feel the more included in the rent, the better.

Btw, does Chicago have any special websites people use for job hunting (like the Chicago Reader)? I've used Indeed last time and could update my profile on LinkedIn. I prefer to avoid Craigslist since half of the jobs I applied to after graduation on there were scams. I'm not sure if it's the same for all Craigslist sites.
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Old 05-04-2013, 01:50 PM
 
Location: Upper West Side, Manhattan, NYC
14,798 posts, read 19,024,140 times
Reputation: 6805
Quote:
Originally Posted by neinei876 View Post
rnc2mbfl, maybe I didn't word myself well. I don't expect to pay nothing in taxes. I know that CA has one of the highest income tax rates, along with NY, so I was hoping to find a city that had lower rates and good transit. If a city like that didn't exist, I would choose to pay higher taxes for better public transit. I would just make sure my new job pays better.
I will say that Chicago has one of the highest sales/use tax rate of any city in the US. Even though it's been lowered since say..3 years ago..it's still high. State Income Tax is 3% in Illinois.

Quote:
Marothisu, I totally agree with on Craigslist and thanks for the tip on Chicago Reader. I read about it around the forums before as well. I, too, become hesitant when an ad doesn't have a picture. Good to know about the heating and gas being included. I've known gas was more expensive than electricity and I'll keep my eye out on places that include both. I feel the more included in the rent, the better.
Yeah definitely the more included in rent, the better. Not everywhere includes air conditioning, so another thing to look out for...or it might be weird. My girlfriend's cheaper place had A/C but it was only in the kitchen for example. I can't 100% tell if you have a child or not, but in the city in case you were wondering.. the best elementary schools tend to be in the north side in areas around like Ravenswood, Lincoln Square, etc. The high schools are much, much better in the suburbs than the city. Two of the best high schools in the state are in the city, but they're very selective enrollment. Then there's other private schools that cost an arm and a leg (i.e. the Chicago Latin School).

There are also some STEM high schools that have just opened this school year operated by various tech companies such as IBM, Cisco, Motorola, Microsoft, etc.

Quote:
Btw, does Chicago have any special websites people use for job hunting (like the Chicago Reader)? I've used Indeed last time and could update my profile on LinkedIn. I prefer to avoid Craigslist since half of the jobs I applied to after graduation on there were scams. I'm not sure if it's the same for all Craigslist sites.
I'm not 100% sure of the best ones. Careerbuilder.com is actually headquartered in Chicago (Tribune Company, who owns the Chicago Tribune, LA Times, etc, bought them too). Chicago Reader has a jobs part of their site but I'm not sure how good it is. I have friends who have used Monster.com as well. There's other sites like Chicago, Illinois Jobs & Careers but I have never used it before.
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Old 05-04-2013, 03:41 PM
 
Location: Fresno, CA
88 posts, read 106,851 times
Reputation: 34
Thanks again Marothisu. I think I'm familiar with all that have you mentioned except the last link, but I'll look into that as well.

I figured every city/state would have some way of taxing people and have always expected larger cities to tax more. I guess I'd prefer my income to be less taxed and pay more in sales. I can't control my income but I can control my spending.

Thanks for letting me know about the AC. I don't think I mind not having an AC. I can deal with heat a lot better than the cold. I can always go back to the old fans if need be lol.

Btw, I do have 1 daughter and I figured the safer, more family oriented areas would have the better schools and seems like everyone agrees it's the north/northeast of Chicago. I'm not sure how schools work there... In Fresno, you go to the designated school for your area and all elementary schools have a chosen middle school they go to afterward. It's the same with high school, so we can't choose where we'd like them to go unless it's a private school. Is it more or less the same there?
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