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Old Today, 08:32 AM
 
11,217 posts, read 22,564,263 times
Reputation: 11001

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Chicago is a great buy if you're geared to take advantage of it's current economy, college educated and going into a white collar corporate environment downtown. There are hundreds of thousands of very well paying jobs in tons of related and distinct industries all within a few square miles. It makes it pretty easy to jump around and up the ladder if your education and lifestyle are geared for that.

I moved here from Iowa and my husband from Michigan at 22 years old with a four year public degree and a clean slate. We both jumped up and around fairly easily and efficiently. Had a blast doing it and weren't overly constrained by money.

My first apartment here was a great gut rehabbed condo in Logan Square I shared with 3 friends and we paid $400 a month each. Moved over to Lakeview and the thick of the nightlife for $700 a month in a two bedroom. Then went into a $1,000 a month one bedroom alone in Lincoln Park/Lakeview. Got my first one bedroom gut rehabbed condo paying $966 a month. Moved on up to a large three bedroom three bath condo with a private rooftop near Wrigley with my husband after we had been together for five years. Just had two kids and moved a few miles west in the Irving Park neighborhood in the middle of the north side and live in a perfect house for us, five bedroom, four bath, gut rehabbed, large side yard and backyard, two houses down from a great park and a five minute walk from the L or the commuter train.

Of my six places I've lived the % of my (or our after I got married) gross income that went to housing costs was:

13%
18%
20%
10%
11%
13%
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Old Today, 08:59 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
24,353 posts, read 18,138,230 times
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As far as livability goes, the NC triangle has been the best I've been to at a reasonable price.
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Old Today, 09:31 AM
Status: "South Carolina: real home of the confederacy" (set 10 days ago)
 
Location: Seattle
5,071 posts, read 3,130,819 times
Reputation: 3575
I know I replied earlier, but Chicago checks every box I would want. Winters are probably a bit cold, and wish it was by an actual beach, but not sure what else I would need? Of course, I have no ties to that city, so no reason to go there.
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Old Today, 12:30 PM
 
Location: Willowbrook, Houston
819 posts, read 682,862 times
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Houston. Our growth speaks for itself. You can live like a king in Houston because your money goes farther here.
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Old Today, 02:00 PM
 
Location: Chi > DC > Reno > SEA
1,746 posts, read 812,632 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KathrynAragon View Post
I currently live in Tyler, TX. It's a little less than 2 hours east of Dallas. We go to Dallas about once a month, because of the airport and because we have friends and family who live in the metroplex of Dallas/Fort Worth. "Nice place to visit but I wouldn't want to live there."
This was what I did when I lived in Reno - although in my case, I do like big cities but got assigned to Reno for a work project. I considered the Bay Area my "big city" and I got pretty familiar with the basic layout over a number of trips.

It was nice being in a smaller city for making friends, but having the big city accessible when needed. In a big city, people can find whatever niche type of friends they want with ease, like Korean manhwa fans or sword swallowers or tarantula owners, so there's no incentive for them to step outside their comfort zone and get to meet new people. In a smaller city, there might just be one group for all the exotic pet owners that struggles to stay active, so they're eager to have new members.
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Old Today, 05:56 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
46,012 posts, read 37,126,320 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheTimidBlueBars View Post
This was what I did when I lived in Reno - although in my case, I do like big cities but got assigned to Reno for a work project. I considered the Bay Area my "big city" and I got pretty familiar with the basic layout over a number of trips.

It was nice being in a smaller city for making friends, but having the big city accessible when needed. In a big city, people can find whatever niche type of friends they want with ease, like Korean manhwa fans or sword swallowers or tarantula owners, so there's no incentive for them to step outside their comfort zone and get to meet new people. In a smaller city, there might just be one group for all the exotic pet owners that struggles to stay active, so they're eager to have new members.
I am not a big group joiner so I don't really know about that but it makes sense. I have a handful of really good "girl friends." A couple of them are newer "acquisitions" but one has been my friend for 20 years. I met her in a sales leads group and we found out we lived very close to each other. A couple are from church or a bible study or volunteer work.

I guess in a mid size or smaller city (not a small town - more on that in a minute) people may be more open to building friendships, I don't know. What I do know is that if I find someone I click with, I make a conscious effort to schedule a lunch or some sort of get together with them, and take it from there. I used to "get" my friends from work - till I quit working and realized just how transient those "friendships" are once you don't work together.

Now - I lived in a small town for a few years and WOW, I found out that I do NOT like that. It was like I just could not get my groove on. I joined the chamber of commerce. I joined the Lions Club. I joined joined joined - to no avail. One day I was talking with a neighbor who was from there but had moved away to a large city and then moved back, so her perspective was interesting. I told her about my frustrations trying to fit in - which as a military brat and wife I had NEVER experienced before - and she said, "Well, honey - they don't need you. They have each other." BINGO. She had hit the nail on the head. Why work at growing a new relationship when they had their little group of local high school graduates (20 and 30 and even 50 years later)?

My point is that I think you can get TOO small. This particular town, which I would gladly never lay eyes on again, had a population of about 13,000. The total metro area was about 100k.

I like Tyler's size of 250k for the metro area - adjacent to the DFW metroplex.
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