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Old 11-28-2014, 11:55 AM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
41 posts, read 66,276 times
Reputation: 44

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Greetings,

I'm a 35 year old, single guy currently living near Dayton, Ohio. I'm toying with the idea of moving west for a change of scenery. Nothing too serious at the moment, just exploring options. I'm looking for suggestions for areas/cities I might want to look into. Some of my requirements are a bit contradictory, so there's some flexibility.
  • Landscape: I'd like to live someplace with Pacific Northwest-like landscape. Someplace with Conifer forests is appealing. Mountains/Wilderness/Outdoor Activities nearby.
  • City: I'd like to live in a medium-sized city, someplace large enough to have all of the big box/home improvement stores, varied dining options, a small but active nightlife/culture/arts scene. Local Breweries/Brew Pubs is a plus.
  • Culture: Someplace with friendly people who would be welcoming to midwestern transplants. A slow-paced city with casual people.
  • Employment: Someplace that has good opportunities in the Tech industry. I'll likely be bringing my job with me, but if I need to seek employment in the future, I'd prefer to have options.
  • Housing: Similar housing/rental costs to Dayton, Ohio. Slightly higher is tolerable, but not monumentally higher. $900-$1000/mo for a two bedroom apartment is reasonable in a nice area here.
  • Real Estate: Access to nearby private, forested real-estate at reasonable prices. I'd probably rent in the city, but would have some interest in owning land in a rural area in the future for weekend getaways.
  • Politics: Someplace that leans conservative/libertarian, without being overbearing. Low corruption, low crime, understanding that these things exist to some degree everywhere. A locality that's not going to fine me for cutting down a tree or digging a pond on my own property without a permit. Someplace without overbearing gun regulations.
  • Weather: Tolerable weather. I enjoy snow, but don't really want to deal with 4 feet of it at a time. I can deal with hot summers, but probably not 100+ degrees for weeks at a time. Prefer sun to rain.

That about does it. Looking forward to hearing your suggestions!
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Old 11-28-2014, 12:39 PM
 
56,696 posts, read 81,017,273 times
Reputation: 12530
Salt Lake City UT may work.
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Old 11-28-2014, 12:44 PM
 
6,436 posts, read 9,964,776 times
Reputation: 8005
Bellevue, Washington.
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Old 11-28-2014, 09:25 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh
3,145 posts, read 2,831,191 times
Reputation: 2858
$900-$1000 for a two bedroom will kick you out of the coastal west states.

The grass is always greener.
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Old 11-28-2014, 09:55 PM
 
1,350 posts, read 1,884,891 times
Reputation: 1163
Quote:
Originally Posted by ckhthankgod View Post
Salt Lake City UT may work.
I agree with this suggestion, and would add Boise to consideration. I think that is probably as far west as you will be able to go; you would not be able to afford the coastal states.
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Old 11-28-2014, 10:38 PM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
41 posts, read 66,276 times
Reputation: 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by amaiunmei View Post
I agree with this suggestion, and would add Boise to consideration. I think that is probably as far west as you will be able to go; you would not be able to afford the coastal states.
Thanks for this input. I could probably afford coastal areas ($2500 would be my max rent that I could pay comfortably. If the coastal areas exceed this, they would be beyond my means). I was getting at that I couldn't afford the $7,500 cost of a two bedroom in Manhattan, as an example. On the other hand, I tend to be thrifty, I'd rather find a good mix of cost/benefit. $1500 for 2 bedroom apartment would be much more comfortable. Like I said, I'm flexible and open to suggestions. I will put a pushpin in Boise.
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Old 11-28-2014, 11:02 PM
 
3,280 posts, read 3,838,588 times
Reputation: 3988
Bozeman, MT

Maybe Billings, MT
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Old 11-29-2014, 05:25 AM
 
1,350 posts, read 1,884,891 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RadioOutrun View Post
Thanks for this input. I could probably afford coastal areas ($2500 would be my max rent that I could pay comfortably. If the coastal areas exceed this, they would be beyond my means). I was getting at that I couldn't afford the $7,500 cost of a two bedroom in Manhattan, as an example. On the other hand, I tend to be thrifty, I'd rather find a good mix of cost/benefit. $1500 for 2 bedroom apartment would be much more comfortable. Like I said, I'm flexible and open to suggestions. I will put a pushpin in Boise.
Yeah, by that measure, CA is mostly out (the places you could afford, you don't want to live there).

Seattle and surrounding areas are right on the edge re: the cost of rent. Seattle has a TON of IT industry players in it, but Seattle otherwise fits none of your criteria. Ditto with Portland.

SLC has a super low unemployment rate; your chances of getting a job there are good. The IT industry is smaller, but IT jobs can be found outside of the IT industry.

Boise's economy is smaller than all of the previously mentioned cities, but it will otherwise give you the feel of being in the Pacific NW. Idaho meets most of your criteria.
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Old 11-29-2014, 11:30 AM
 
404 posts, read 738,970 times
Reputation: 440
maybe Bend, Oregon?

SLC and outer seattle areas have already been mentioned
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Old 11-29-2014, 11:57 AM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
41 posts, read 66,276 times
Reputation: 44
Quote:
Originally Posted by amaiunmei View Post
Yeah, by that measure, CA is mostly out (the places you could afford, you don't want to live there).
For sure, California is probably not on the list anyway... a little to "blue" for my liking.

Quote:
Originally Posted by amaiunmei View Post
Seattle and surrounding areas are right on the edge re: the cost of rent. Seattle has a TON of IT industry players in it, but Seattle otherwise fits none of your criteria. Ditto with Portland.
Having never been to either city, that was my instinct as well. Both Seattle and Portland strike me as a little too... Bohemian? My gut tells me both of these cities are culturally incompatible, although the scenery in Oregon and Washington is stunning, and it would be cool to scout various Grimm shooting locations (big fan of the show). I'll file these under "accessible places to visit, don't want to live there."

Quote:
Originally Posted by amaiunmei View Post
SLC has a super low unemployment rate; your chances of getting a job there are good. The IT industry is smaller, but IT jobs can be found outside of the IT industry.
SLC has been a consideration for me, but my main concern, based on a small amount of research, is that private, forested land is more difficult to come by and more expensive within a ~2 hour drive, due largely to the local ski resorts. (As an aside, I don't really have any interest in Skiing or Snowboarding.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by amaiunmei View Post
Boise's economy is smaller than all of the previously mentioned cities, but it will otherwise give you the feel of being in the Pacific NW. Idaho meets most of your criteria.
Boise, on the other hand, seems to have loads of 5-40 acre forested lots up along 55 below $100,000. It seems Boise may be a serious contender. Maybe I'll track down and add a few people in the Boise Tech industry on Twitter and see if I can gather some additional info. My main concern is that I keep hearing a phrase repeated... that people in Boise "Are very friendly, but don't want to be your friend."

Last edited by RadioOutrun; 11-29-2014 at 12:10 PM..
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