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View Poll Results: Where should we move?
Minneapolis, MN 17 43.59%
Boston, MA 3 7.69%
Tacoma, WA 9 23.08%
Madison, WI 10 25.64%
Voters: 39. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 08-27-2014, 09:49 AM
 
Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
173 posts, read 197,416 times
Reputation: 134

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My husband and I are looking to move from the hot, humid south to somewhere either farther north/northeast/northwest. I've narrowed it down to Minneapolis, Tacoma, Boston, or Madison. The number one reason I am moving is due to weather. I have a heart condition where I faint in the heat, so I need somewhere cold. The only place i've visited out of these is Minneapolis, which was quite nice. Where would be the best place for us?

A little about us:

1. I am a 23 y.o. white female and my husband is a 33 y.o. hispanic male

2. I work in insurance (worker's comp and construction insurance) and my husband LOVES to do construction or factory type work.

3. I do not mind the rain or snow, as long as there are trucks to clear the snow in winter. Here in the South, they literally closed the highways and roadways for 3 days this winter due to ice.

4. We are both fairly liberal, but not in your face about it.

5. We love trying different ethnic cuisines. Our favorites are Vietnamese, Thai, and Greek.

6. We enjoy going out to parties, but don't want somewhere people do a ton of drugs or where there's a lot of crime. In the past year and a half, we were robbed at gunpoint once by in Birmingham (on our engagment night) and another time had a $150 package stolen off our porch by a female in Baton Rouge.

7. I LOVE festivals. My fondest memories are from when I was a little girl and went to fall festivals with my parents in St. Louis. I also love different cultural events such as Chinese New Year/Spanish festivals

8. We're middle class. We pay $700 a month for an apartment here in Baton Rouge plus utilities. We could probably afford anywhere up to $900/$950 as long as we keep similar salaries once we move.

Last edited by mjmcgrath; 08-27-2014 at 10:12 AM..
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Old 08-27-2014, 11:27 AM
 
Location: Minneapolis
1,704 posts, read 2,763,360 times
Reputation: 2335
Quote:
1. I am a 23 y.o. white female and my husband is a 33 y.o. hispanic male
Shouldn't have a problem in any of them. You might possibly feel a little out of place in Madison but I don't think it would ruin the city for you.

Quote:
2. I work in insurance (worker's comp and construction insurance) and my husband LOVES to do construction or factory type work.
Same as above, this shouldn't be an issue in any of these cities.

Quote:
3. I do not mind the rain or snow, as long as there are trucks to clear the snow in winter. Here in the South, they literally closed the highways and roadways for 3 days this winter due to ice.
Tacoma is probably the LEAST prepared for snow removal of the four. There will be more snow than in Baton Rouge, but it's rare enough that they still aren't as efficient dealing with it as they are in Minneapolis/Madison/Boston.

Quote:
4. We are both fairly liberal, but not in your face about it.
Good for all four.

Quote:
5. We love trying different ethnic cuisines. Our favorites are Vietnamese, Thai, and Greek.
Minneapolis and Tacoma have huge east Asian populations, and that comes with a load of GREAT cuisine from all around east Asia. Boston is an enormous city, so there again there will be no problem finding what you're interested in. I'm actually going to give this one to Minneapolis since it has the combination of cosmopolitan size and east Asian population (granted Tacoma is adjacent to powerhouse Seattle so it's no slouch).

Quote:
6. We enjoy going out to parties, but don't want somewhere people do a ton of drugs or where there's a lot of crime. In the past year and a half, we were robbed at gunpoint once by in Birmingham (on our engagment night) and another time had a $150 package stolen off our porch by a female in Baton Rouge.
Obviously Madison is the quietest of the four, but I still don't imagine this will be a big problem in any of them. Boston maybe but like any city, you just have to keep your head when you're walking at night.

Quote:
7. I LOVE festivals. My fondest memories are from when I was a little girl and went to fall festivals with my parents in St. Louis. I also love different cultural events such as Chinese New Year/Spanish festivals
Like #5, this one is Minneapolis/Boston > Tacoma > Madison.

Quote:
8. We're middle class. We pay $700 a month for an apartment here in Baton Rouge plus utilities. We could probably afford anywhere up to $900/$950 as long as we keep similar salaries once we move.
Boston is probably out of your price range. You should be in good shape in the rest.

It sounds to me like you're looking for a bigger city than Madison. I love Madison, but it isn't big or particularly diverse. Boston is very expensive - VERY expensive, like approaching San Francisco expensive. Tacoma and Madison are both pretty affordable and Minneapolis is a bit more expensive, but still totally possible for a normal person. Tacoma is ill-equipped to handle snowfall and icy roads.

For you, I would say:
1. Minneapolis
2. Tacoma
3. Madison
4. Boston
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Old 08-27-2014, 12:21 PM
 
4,060 posts, read 4,464,772 times
Reputation: 2855
Odd list - Tacoma is regarded as the ugly step-sister to Seattle, though it's not really as bad as its reputation. Still it's going to, generally speaking, have higher crime across the city than the other places you listed - the other three are generally considered 'highly desirable' - more akin to Seattle than Tacoma.

Mpls and Tacoma have about the same total rates, but in Mpls you have a mix of high/avg/low crime areas (though I suppose the low areas do little good if you can't afford to live in them) - whereas Tacoma is a mix of high/avg. crime neighborhoods.

Mpls will still get quite warm (and moderately humid) in the summers. So while cooler than the south, summers may still be a challenge for you. On the climate front, Tacoma would treat you much better. It's also, generally speaking, will support year-round construction work better than the upper midwest.

The main risk with Tacoma, imo, is that you'll move there and find work in Seattle. While the commute to downtown Seattle can be done, and there is bus service, it's not what I would personally find ideal, and likely to be a big shock compared to Baton Rouge traffic. Or worse your spouse will find work in Everett.

There are also few plows out in the PNW - like the south it doesn't snow/ice very often (thus why cities don't spend big on plows or sand/salt trucks) so in the rare event there is a storm, it can be a few days to dig out. So no improvement there.
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Old 08-27-2014, 12:34 PM
 
Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
173 posts, read 197,416 times
Reputation: 134
Quote:
Originally Posted by steel03 View Post
Shouldn't have a problem in any of them. You might possibly feel a little out of place in Madison but I don't think it would ruin the city for you.


Same as above, this shouldn't be an issue in any of these cities.


Tacoma is probably the LEAST prepared for snow removal of the four. There will be more snow than in Baton Rouge, but it's rare enough that they still aren't as efficient dealing with it as they are in Minneapolis/Madison/Boston.


Good for all four.


Minneapolis and Tacoma have huge east Asian populations, and that comes with a load of GREAT cuisine from all around east Asia. Boston is an enormous city, so there again there will be no problem finding what you're interested in. I'm actually going to give this one to Minneapolis since it has the combination of cosmopolitan size and east Asian population (granted Tacoma is adjacent to powerhouse Seattle so it's no slouch).


Obviously Madison is the quietest of the four, but I still don't imagine this will be a big problem in any of them. Boston maybe but like any city, you just have to keep your head when you're walking at night.


Like #5, this one is Minneapolis/Boston > Tacoma > Madison.


Boston is probably out of your price range. You should be in good shape in the rest.

It sounds to me like you're looking for a bigger city than Madison. I love Madison, but it isn't big or particularly diverse. Boston is very expensive - VERY expensive, like approaching San Francisco expensive. Tacoma and Madison are both pretty affordable and Minneapolis is a bit more expensive, but still totally possible for a normal person. Tacoma is ill-equipped to handle snowfall and icy roads.

For you, I would say:
1. Minneapolis
2. Tacoma
3. Madison
4. Boston
Thanks! Awesome details about the differences in all the cities. I think I'm starting to lean towards Minneapolis. You are right, I am looking for a larger city. We like to be close to everything. Currently we live on one of the busiest streets in Baton Rouge with lots of shopping and dining.
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Old 08-27-2014, 12:36 PM
 
Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
173 posts, read 197,416 times
Reputation: 134
Quote:
Originally Posted by bler144 View Post
Odd list - Tacoma is regarded as the ugly step-sister to Seattle, though it's not really as bad as its reputation. Still it's going to, generally speaking, have higher crime across the city than the other places you listed - the other three are generally considered 'highly desirable' - more akin to Seattle than Tacoma.

Mpls and Tacoma have about the same total rates, but in Mpls you have a mix of high/avg/low crime areas (though I suppose the low areas do little good if you can't afford to live in them) - whereas Tacoma is a mix of high/avg. crime neighborhoods.

Mpls will still get quite warm (and moderately humid) in the summers. So while cooler than the south, summers may still be a challenge for you. On the climate front, Tacoma would treat you much better. It's also, generally speaking, will support year-round construction work better than the upper midwest.

The main risk with Tacoma, imo, is that you'll move there and find work in Seattle. While the commute to downtown Seattle can be done, and there is bus service, it's not what I would personally find ideal, and likely to be a big shock compared to Baton Rouge traffic. Or worse your spouse will find work in Everett.

There are also few plows out in the PNW - like the south it doesn't snow/ice very often (thus why cities don't spend big on plows or sand/salt trucks) so in the rare event there is a storm, it can be a few days to dig out. So no improvement there.
I listed Tacoma instead of Seattle because my husband has a friend who lives there and I doubt there's anywhere less than $1,000 to live in downtown Seattle. We might also consider Renton or Bellingham WA, although they are smaller cities
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Old 08-28-2014, 02:43 PM
 
Location: Seattle
565 posts, read 564,206 times
Reputation: 516
Out of these cities I have been to Tacoma (I live here) and Madison ( Relatives live there). From my point of view Madison is a laid back hippie town, with a lot of farmers markets, small local festivals, and a lot to do for a city its size but for me it lacked a variety of people, and a metropolitan feel that I have here in Tacoma. I also feel like the job opportunities might be scarce but I could be totally wrong about that. I have lived in Tacoma my whole life and I can honestly say that I absolutely love it here. The job market is constantly on the rise, there is tons of new construction throughout the area and even though there is more in the warmer part of the year it is still a year round thing. There is so much to do here, I am never bored. Some highlights you may want to check out are Pt. Defiance Park, Downtown, 6th ave, and Ruston Way Waterfront. There are a variety of neighborhoods each with their own unique appeal. Tacoma has really bloomed. I know I'm from here and I'm really talking it up but in my opinion it is a great place to live and grow up and my needs and wants are fulfilled here other than it's too cold in the winter for me but for you that should not be an issue!
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Old 08-28-2014, 02:56 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee
3,451 posts, read 3,398,087 times
Reputation: 2895
Quote:
Originally Posted by blaserbrad View Post
Out of these cities I have been to Tacoma (I live here) and Madison ( Relatives live there). From my point of view Madison is a laid back hippie town, with a lot of farmers markets, small local festivals, and a lot to do for a city its size but for me it lacked a variety of people, and a metropolitan feel that I have here in Tacoma. I also feel like the job opportunities might be scarce but I could be totally wrong about that.
Madison generally ranks very high in terms of jobs, and has done so consistently throughout the years. First "best job markets 2014" result I googled is this one, showing it 3rd in the country with its typically low unemployment rate: https://www.ziprecruiter.com/blog/20...rkets-in-2014/

Certainly there are opportunities in Tacoma that don't exist at the same level in Madison and vice versa, but I've never seen Tacoma pop up in these rankings in the way Madison regularly does.

And yes, it's a hippie town. Which is one of the reasons why I moved after a year and a half. I'm not talking the politics of it, I'm talking the general hippie feel of the city, which rubs me the wrong way. But I'd definitely live in Madison again before Tacoma (which is OK).

Regardless, I think the OP is looking for more amenities than Madison or Tacoma offer, and would be smart to go with Boston or Minny.
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Old 08-28-2014, 04:08 PM
 
4,060 posts, read 4,464,772 times
Reputation: 2855
Quote:
Originally Posted by cheese plate View Post

Regardless, I think the OP is looking for more amenities than Madison or Tacoma offer, and would be smart to go with Boston or Minny.
In her last post she mentioned 1,000 for housing - that's a pretty tight budget in the Boston metro (though possible her salary would be higher there as well). If you can handle the climate I'd tend to recommend Mpls over Boston.
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Old 08-29-2014, 11:27 AM
 
Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
173 posts, read 197,416 times
Reputation: 134
Quote:
Originally Posted by blaserbrad View Post
Out of these cities I have been to Tacoma (I live here) and Madison ( Relatives live there). From my point of view Madison is a laid back hippie town, with a lot of farmers markets, small local festivals, and a lot to do for a city its size but for me it lacked a variety of people, and a metropolitan feel that I have here in Tacoma. I also feel like the job opportunities might be scarce but I could be totally wrong about that. I have lived in Tacoma my whole life and I can honestly say that I absolutely love it here. The job market is constantly on the rise, there is tons of new construction throughout the area and even though there is more in the warmer part of the year it is still a year round thing. There is so much to do here, I am never bored. Some highlights you may want to check out are Pt. Defiance Park, Downtown, 6th ave, and Ruston Way Waterfront. There are a variety of neighborhoods each with their own unique appeal. Tacoma has really bloomed. I know I'm from here and I'm really talking it up but in my opinion it is a great place to live and grow up and my needs and wants are fulfilled here other than it's too cold in the winter for me but for you that should not be an issue!

How is rent in Tacoma with it being fairly close to Seattle and with Seattle's huge current population growth? Is the rent increasing quickly as people are priced out of Seattle?

Glad to hear that construction is booming, my husband loves doing that type of work so he'll be pleased to hear that
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Old 08-29-2014, 11:33 AM
 
116 posts, read 174,512 times
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Keep in mind that Seattle and Tacoma are pretty warm in the summer. In August, for example 20 out of 29 days so far were above 80 degrees and there were a few days above 90.
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