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Old 10-25-2015, 10:17 AM
 
14 posts, read 9,117 times
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Hi guys,

I've been researching for the past several months on this site and reading multiple "best-of" articles. I grew up in NY and enjoy the walkability and nightlife but I really am getting tired of the sky-high rent and harsh winters.

Ideally, my top three criteria are walkability, affordability, and no harsh winters; I know these are a tough combination to find. I don't have a car, nor do I want one, but I understand that most warmer cities are harder to navigate without one. I wouldn't mind taking the bus, light-rail, or living closer to downtown areas in order to make this a possibility. If all else fails, I'd get a car for times when I really need it. I know it all depends on where you choose to live and work, so I'm keeping that in mind.

In terms of budget and jobs, I really wouldn't want to spend more than $800-$900 on a studio. I've been living with roommates most of my life, so I really value my own personal space. I work in the tech industry for an electronics refurbisher and have a B.A. in I/O Psychology. I'm looking at administrative jobs and tech jobs so either of those fields would be fine.

My top prospects so far are downtown Atlanta, St. Petersburg Florida, Raleigh, New Orleans, Miami, and Austin. I'm a single guy in my 20s and I have about $7k saved up. I know I need a job lined up before I move but with winter coming, it's tempting to just pack up and go. I'm planning a trip to a couple of these cities this coming January but I wanted some opinions to see what the great people of city-data thought!

I really appreciate any and all feedback!!!
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Old 10-25-2015, 08:12 PM
 
Location: Miami-Jax
6,328 posts, read 7,005,896 times
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Well you already know you're gonna be compromising on a lot by going carless so as long as you understand that, my suggestions are Atlanta (would probably look at 4 or 5 neighborhoods ahead of downtown), Charlotte, Dallas, Houston and Miami. New Orleans and Austin can work too but might seem a tad small coming from NYC.

I mostly disregarded your job field since there are "administrative" jobs everywhere. This is mainly about the three main criteria, and I think you should be able to find a studio in your range though in some cities it might take a bit of looking.
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Old 10-25-2015, 11:06 PM
 
Location: Miami, Floroda
650 posts, read 607,689 times
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St. Petersburg or Miami would be my top choices. But Zmiami is expensive, but has great nightlife, beaches, and just a nice city IMO.
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Old 10-26-2015, 08:51 AM
 
14 posts, read 9,117 times
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Thanks for the feedback guys! I have family on the west coast of Florida so that's why I was considering St. Pete. Miami does look tempting, but it does appear to be as expensive as NYC. I'll take Dallas, Houston, and Charlotte into consideration. I really like the idea of Austin but I think the popularity of it is making it more expensive overall (not to mention the competition for jobs from UT Austin graduates).

Yeah, job wise I'm pretty flexible in terms of what I'm looking for since my experience is mostly customer service/tech/office upkeep.
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Old 10-26-2015, 09:45 AM
 
6,438 posts, read 9,982,286 times
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Being from Florida, there is no way you will be able to survive the west coast without a car. And you're too young to be living in God's waiting room. The Pacific Northwest would be perfect for you. The Seattle metro area. There are jobs for people in your field, plenty of walkability, a plethora of amenities, and there's public transportation everywhere. But you need to increase your budget just a bit. Of course downtown Seattle is out of the question. However if you stay in the suburbs of Seattle like Bellevue (which is really nice btw), older apartments start around $875 to $1300 for studios and 1 bedrooms and there's still many bus routes throughout the town.
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Old 10-26-2015, 10:41 AM
 
Location: Miami-Jax
6,328 posts, read 7,005,896 times
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The reason I cut out St Pete was, as allenk said, the issue of avoiding car use. Sure it's a sliding scale and maybe you'd be ok with it, but I think I'd have to own a car and I'm pretty tolerant towards walking/public transit. St Pete sure is nice but you'd be pretty isolated and probably very tough to find a job that wouldn't require a personal vehicle for commute.

If you're stretching beyond the sunbelt then Denver might be worth a look. I can't vouch for it personally but hear good things.
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Old 10-26-2015, 11:31 AM
 
4,060 posts, read 4,481,549 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allenk893 View Post
The Pacific Northwest would be perfect for you. The Seattle metro area. There are jobs for people in your field, plenty of walkability, a plethora of amenities, and there's public transportation everywhere. But you need to increase your budget just a bit. Of course downtown Seattle is out of the question. However if you stay in the suburbs of Seattle like Bellevue (which is really nice btw), older apartments start around $875 to $1300 for studios and 1 bedrooms and there's still many bus routes throughout the town.
The bus ride, IIRC, from Bellevue to Seattle is over an hour (same from Bellevue to Redmond), assuming work will be downtown rather than out in Bellevue.

I'm guessing wherever the OP is in NYC public transit is much more efficient than that.
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Old 10-26-2015, 02:39 PM
 
14 posts, read 9,117 times
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Yeah I understand about St. Pete; I know I'd be pretty limited to pretty much downtown only. St. Pete isn't my first choice but it's under consideration. I hear the nightlife is pretty good there; I honestly won't know until I actually visit these places but that's why I'm trying to plan a trip this coming January. I want to hit as many citiies as possible and I can't make the trip until I know for sure where I'm visiting haha.

Seattle sounds great but the weather is the kicker. It's also why I'm ruling out cities like Philadelphia, Boston, Chicago, Baltimore, etc. The main reason why I want to leave NY is the lack of year-round warm weather. If it weren't for the weather, I'd honestly find a way to make NY work for me. I went to high-school in Port Charlotte and the weather made me never want to experience cold ever again! I can deal with hot and humid, I can't deal with snow and below freezing temps.

So, still thinking Atlanta, Houston, Austin, Charlotte, New Orleans, maybe Miami. In terms of budget, a studio downtown is ideal but I would be willing to put up with an hour commute or so if it means saving money. I'm living in Astoria Queens now and commute to Midtown. I used to commute over an hour and a half from Long Island to Manhattan so I know what a hellish commute is.
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Old 10-26-2015, 05:19 PM
 
14 posts, read 9,117 times
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I was also really taking a look at Miami. I was using Walkscore and it seems like there are reasonable rents even near the downtown area.
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Old 10-27-2015, 06:16 AM
 
21,245 posts, read 30,504,090 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by allenk893 View Post
Being from Florida, there is no way you will be able to survive the west coast without a car. And you're too young to be living in God's waiting room.
Have you actually been to Downtown St Pete within the past few years? That statement would seemingly indicate you haven't given the dramatic turn around in terms of shift of age demographics and overall development.
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