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Old 11-19-2014, 01:02 AM
 
Location: New York NY
4,270 posts, read 6,356,752 times
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You might also check out New Orleans, which seems to meet all your criteria except possibly mass transit. I don't know how that is. But it is a small city physically and as a tourist spot should have plenty of the jobs you want.
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Old 11-19-2014, 07:11 AM
 
1,998 posts, read 2,935,828 times
Reputation: 2150
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisgreenwell View Post
We are thinking that Tuscon is ruled out after looking up for the past hour or so, it might sound silly but it reminds us too much of Rochester just with a different climate, lol.

Right now, we have it narrowed down to either Phoenix AZ, Austin TX, Charlotte NC, Tampa FL, and we want to check out some places in VA.
Except for maybe Austin, those are all places where you need a car to get around. Public transit in Charlotte, Tampa and Phoenix are all very very inconvenient.
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Old 11-19-2014, 08:22 AM
 
Location: Phoenix metro
20,005 posts, read 69,444,268 times
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Phoenix is mild in winter, but not "warm". Its downright cold to freezing at night. Last winter was mild, this one is already cold, IMO. We'll be seeing 30s at night real soon.

Finding a place to rent in Phoenix area can be difficult. We looked at several places within our range, but they all ended up being in bad areas. Trust me, make the effort to get into the nice areas of the east valley (ie Scottsdale, etc). The extra money youll pay is worth the safety, etc.
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Old 11-19-2014, 08:59 AM
 
Location: Durham
660 posts, read 811,894 times
Reputation: 520
Default It Depends! :-)

Nothing is impossible - including $1500/mo in California - that said, it depends on WHERE in California and what other sacrifices you're willing to make.

If you like it hot then I'd go Phoenix or Tucson, but my goal was the best place for year-round outdoor living (I'm quite active outdoors), and so I chose North Carolina because of it's less extreme Winters AND Summers, and long Spring and Autumn. While I'd much rather be too hot than too cold, running or playing tennis is just as nasty if it's 110 as it is if it's 20. :-)

San Diego would be the perfect place for me weather-wise, but it's simply too expensive . . . I even went and looked at apartments there and man . . . rents are very high!


Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisgreenwell View Post
I just want to reiterate that California can not be an option if $1500 is unrealistic for our qualifications, since we will have other expenses and want to have a least some money for fun. If it is DEFINITELY possible, then I would accept and appreciate further suggestions about it but from the majority of the research I've done, California doesn't seem like it would be very possible. Correct me if i"m wrong though.

And Professor46, thanks for the help! I like it HOT, so Phoenix is not out of the question, but we are also considering Charlotte and Raleigh too
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:13 AM
 
Location: Durham
660 posts, read 811,894 times
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Default Being Realistic

I was not fully calculating tips . . . which can vary widely, nor is there a guarantee of 40 hours a week's worth of work. You need to be realistic in your calculations and not "best case scenario" since the best case scenario is far from guaranteed.

Also, I have a good friend living in San Diego who pays MUCH more than $1500 for his 2-BR apartment and it's not in a great area. Maybe if they are willing to share a 1-BR in a less-desirable neighborhood?

What your mortgage is in Colorado is not relevant if A.) they are not looking to move there and B.) they are not looking to buy. It also neglects to include costs like property taxes, maintenance, upkeep and insurance, or the down payment it'd likely require.

When I lived in Seattle our mortgage was $1400 a month for a 3BR/3BA home in a great neighborhood with water views, but we put $200,000 down in cash, and paid a fortune in property taxes.

But that isn't relevant to their situation either.


Quote:
Originally Posted by David Aguilar View Post
I don't know how he came to his $1500/mo number, but

2 people making $9/hr, 40/hrs week = $2880/mo gross.
+$60-$100/night in tips, another $2400-$4000/mo.

Those numbers seem doable to me.

From 1998-2007, I worked for tips in CA, both waiting tables and delivering pizza (the tip numbers I get from what I averaged 1998-2007). The minimum wage wasn't nearly as high back then, but in 2003-2004 I split $1080 rent (Inland Empire) with another guy, and survived just fine. I was a server, he was a cook (both of us worked at Denny's).

The moral of the story, is that the mortgage on my 4 bd/3ba/2600 sqft house in Colorado is in OP's price range. And I no longer wait tables or deliver pizza.
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:24 AM
 
Location: Durham
660 posts, read 811,894 times
Reputation: 520
Comparing NYC to anything in the rest of New York State is not logical; and I live in New York State. EVERYPLACE in New York State is going to be cheaper than NYC by a massive amount (except maybe Southhampton or something). However, costs between many other areas of the state are quite similar, assuming they are similar in size. I could move from Buffalo, for example, to Syracuse and see little difference.

My guess is that Ridgecrest, CA wouldn't have excellent public transportation either, nor meet many of their other criteria.

Personally I'd rather live in a non-armpit that has snow than an armpit that doesn't, but that's just me (and I HATE the cold).

I've spent the last year researching cities that are affordable, much warmer than Upstate NY, offer a solid economy/jobs, and access to things like reliable public transportation and great restaurants and a social scene, and the list is limited.


Quote:
Originally Posted by David Aguilar View Post
California is much larger than whatever state you're moving from (NY, right?). There is no one "California". Just like Rochester and NYC aren't the same, and don't cost the same.

Heck, if you're worried about costs, move to Ridgecrest, CA. Rents should still be sub $800/mo there. There are numerous smaller and cheaper places around the state that still have warm weather.

I would have recommended Bakersfield, Fresno, et al, but jobs can be an issue in the San Joaquin Valley. But the rents are cheap, and the weather is warm. And many more of the snob-variety will also call those areas an armpit. But they are armpits that don't have 6 feet of snow on the way (not to mention 6 inches, or 6 mm).

Last edited by Professor46; 11-19-2014 at 09:36 AM..
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:28 AM
 
Location: Nashville TN
4,925 posts, read 4,922,501 times
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I would love to move to Austin, TX, its a really progressive city because of UT and its get a lot of high paying jobs, they can get competitive. I just got a job in Nashville, TN its a great city but it can get cold in the winter. Phoenix, AZ metro is a great area as well and not as expensive as Austin, TX but it has its drawbacks as well.. it has massive urban sprawl and really hot summers. Good Luck.
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:28 AM
 
Location: Durham
660 posts, read 811,894 times
Reputation: 520
Default Confusion!

Now you are just confusing me! :-)

Austin is EXPENSIVE, especially if you want to live anywhere remotely walkable; I have been there and have friends there, and looked into moving there myself. Tampa isn't also non-car friendly (spent lots of time there), and I'm not sure how VA would even get into this mix . . .


Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisgreenwell View Post
We are thinking that Tuscon is ruled out after looking up for the past hour or so, it might sound silly but it reminds us too much of Rochester just with a different climate, lol.

Right now, we have it narrowed down to either Phoenix AZ, Austin TX, Charlotte NC, Tampa FL, and we want to check out some places in VA.
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Old 11-19-2014, 09:30 AM
 
Location: Durham
660 posts, read 811,894 times
Reputation: 520
Default I'm Not Getting It Either! LOL!

Yeah, I've been to both Tucson and Rochester and I don't get this comparison at all . . . Tucson is beautiful with seemingly everything the OP's would want (transportation could still be an issue).


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobloblawslawblog View Post
Well, that's a new one on me... but then again I've never been to Rochester so I'll take your word on it.

Just remember, Phoenix is much bigger and more vast than your other choices. Best of luck to you in whatever city you choose.
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Old 11-19-2014, 11:06 AM
 
Location: Birmingham
779 posts, read 769,565 times
Reputation: 359
Quote:
Originally Posted by nep321 View Post
Just beware that the places in North Carolina, Georgia, etc. have southern culture which may take some getting used to. I am from New England and simply could not get used to it (the accents, confederate flags, culture, etc.). It's definitely a different state of mind in the South.
I think things would be somewhat different in the south but with an open mind you can learn to embrace and even love the culture. I know when I moved here it was difficult at first but settled in very quickly. I think some things would be different but in a large enough city like Atlanta, there isn't much of a cultural difference. Most of the people in Atlanta are transplants due to work or looking for the same thing just like you. I also think that you'd be hard pressed to find a confederate flag in the city. Not sure that I've ever found one. Things like that aren't really appreciated in the inner-city like they may be in the suburbs.

I think somewhere like Atlanta may be a great option for you, especially if you settle into the right neighborhood. Midtown Atlanta is known as Atlanta's gay neighborhood but is also home to a lot of other people more progressive people.
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