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Old 12-01-2014, 01:07 PM
 
Location: Texas
27 posts, read 29,413 times
Reputation: 18

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gantz View Post
New Hampshire/Vermont might be perfect for you, but might be very cold, coming from Texas. Thats an area of the country where even farmers are atheists. Cost of living shouldn't be that high too, especially comparing with pacific northwest.
Cost of living was actually SUPER high. Did a quick search on Zillow, housing was ridiculous. Cost of living calculator says housing is 71% higher in Vermont, and 63% more in NH.

Shocking honestly haha.
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:10 PM
 
1,640 posts, read 2,056,610 times
Reputation: 2543
Quote:
Originally Posted by secularmama View Post
Would love, love, love to go to the pacific northwest. My ultimate goal is the Seattle or Portland areas. But it is SUPER expensive to live over there. And y'all are right - you have to be highly educated to get jobs over there or independently wealthy to afford much of anything. Like I said, we don't plan on furthering our education anytime soon, and of course, we're too young to be independently wealthy, so the northwest is on hold for now.

I will check out Phoenix, AZ! Hadn't even crossed my mind really, when I think of AZ, I think of even hotter than Texas so we'll see haha. I'm also considering Raleigh/Durham, NC area, any input there??
If I had a choice between Phoenix, AZ and Raleigh-Durham, NC, I'd pick Phoenix, for sure.

For me personally, most of NC is just too Southern. Even though people say NC is where a bunch of Nor'easters and FL halfbacks go for bigger, newer, cheaper housing and/or a more "family-friendly" environment (code for predominantly white, religious, and socially conservative), I disagree. NC, especially in the small towns and rural areas, is very backwards. There's still too much "Bubba talk" and too many "Bible thumpers" for me to truly like it there (I'm also non-religious, by the way), not to mention people in NC don't particularly care for "Yankees" all that much, either. Again, a lot of this is area-dependent, but the prevailing culture, attitude, ideals, and general mindset swing religious and socially conservative.

Well, if any of that matters, AZ has none of those issues. AZ has a classic live-and-let-live Western vibe -- very casual; polite (e.g., you'll rarely hear a car horn in Phoenix, despite it being the 5th or 6th largest city in the US); open-minded; tolerant, even if not approving; and although people may seem aloof, they are almost invariably pleasant if you talk first. Although quite fiscally conservative, AZ is significantly less socially conservative than the South -- no one in AZ cares what religion you are, where you go (or don't go) to church, or who you sleep with. AZ's population consists primarily of out-of-towners with most residents hailing from CA or the Midwest, although TX is well-represented, too. Needless to say, no one cares where you're from, and you won't hear the term "Yankee" used outside of reference to the baseball team.

Jobs -- that's the biggest issue in Phoenix. Because Phoenix has a relatively non-diversified service-oriented economy with a fairly limited corporate presence and low union participation rates (AZ is a RTW state), finding meaningful, well-compensated work as an uneducated, unskilled worker is quite difficult. Lots of retail, hospitality/tourism, and call-center-type work in the Valley with little in the way of manufacturing, trade, and logistics -- in other words, industries that generally offer living wages and a shot at upward economic mobility for uneducated, unskilled workers -- especially compared to TX and even NC. Coupled with the generally abysmal K - 12 public educational system, it goes without saying that Phoenix and AZ in general tend to breed and attract apathetic, unmotivated young people or -- at the very least -- those that aren't particularly ambitious from educational and professional standpoints, although strides are being made in these departments to attract and retain bright, talented youth and diversify the region's economy.

I hope this helps. If you have any other questions about AZ, please feel free to shoot me a DM. Thanks and best of luck to you and your family,

8to32
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:45 PM
 
Location: TOVCCA
8,452 posts, read 11,484,318 times
Reputation: 12309
Quote:
Originally Posted by nightlysparrow View Post
Sacramento might do. There's a forum here for it
Maybe take a look here:

Back in Texas, but still thinking about Sacramento
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Old 12-01-2014, 02:20 PM
 
3,605 posts, read 5,067,119 times
Reputation: 3348
Housing anywhere is more expensive than Texas.

Have you spent much time in downtown Ft Worth, W 7th, or near TCU? You might be pleasantly surprised.
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Old 12-01-2014, 02:57 PM
 
Location: Texas
27 posts, read 29,413 times
Reputation: 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Davros View Post
Housing anywhere is more expensive than Texas.

Have you spent much time in downtown Ft Worth, W 7th, or near TCU? You might be pleasantly surprised.
Pleasantly surprised by what exactly? Those areas are certainly not accepting of secular families. Affordable, yeah, but only if you live in the higher crime suburbs of it. TCU is literally Texas Christians University, so the area around there is obviously very Christian. And Fort Worth is even worse for secular homeschooling compared to Dallas.

I just feel like it's kind of ridiculous that I'd have to pay $2k+ a month in rent to live someplace not overrun by judgmental Christian conservatives in the Dallas area. Austin is like $3k+ a month.

I did a rough search for Phoenix, AZ and Durham/Raleigh, NC, and found that rent was even less than $1200 in some places for a 3 bedroom in a safe neighborhood (safe according to crime data on neighborhoodscout as well as searching a few threads on C-D). Found thriving adult secular groups, secular parenting groups, secular homeschool groups, etc. in both areas by searching on meetup.com. These are the kind of places I'm looking for. Phoenix and Durham/Raleigh are great places to consider, I would just like to keep receiving suggestions of similar areas (if there are!) so that I've got more to compare!
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Old 12-01-2014, 04:31 PM
 
3,605 posts, read 5,067,119 times
Reputation: 3348
Ok. Raleigh /Durham is nice I agree. TCU is not conservative though but Ft Worth is probably not a good fit.
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