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Old 05-02-2007, 01:39 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
414 posts, read 2,417,212 times
Reputation: 296

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Around View Post
Many people who live in our metro area (Mpls/St Paul) do put themselves under a lot of this stress. But they've chosen to do this. There are alternatives, you don't HAVE to live like that here. We live in the city, have a small lot, walk to small scale neighborhood stores, restaurants, coffee shops, etc. where there are no lines, ride public transit to work (30 minutes vs. a typical 45 minute car commute from the burgeoning Twin Cities exurbs).

Many stressed, misreable Twin Citians are frustrated farmers who would love to live in a rural area, but there are no jobs there for them, so they settle in the "city", paying exorbient prices for suburban/exurban homes in areas where the schools are overcrowded, the traffic is awful, commutes are unbearable and costly due to gas prices, and there are lines at the Starbucks. Poor bastards!
Yeah good thing for exurban/suburban office parks. You can live in the rural area and work. I saw some rural area office parks too down in Central Illinois. Lovely How frustrating to move out of the rural area.
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Old 05-02-2007, 02:36 PM
 
Location: Bay Area, CA
29,038 posts, read 45,065,598 times
Reputation: 20425
Quote:
Originally Posted by wallstreet1986 View Post
Its not just a little bit of stress -- its a lot of stress.

People commuting hour and a half by car in a place like Walnut Creek if they dont take the public trans or San Mateo, paying 4 bucks a gallon for gas, fighting for parking at the grocery store or on the street, longer hours at work, lines for everything, working hard only to be priced out and not able to buy anything.
I've lived here on & off since age 7, and like somebody else said, people MAKE it stressful on themselves! Let's break down your points...

Commute: I live 1/2 mile from work, so my commute is nothing... I could walk, but don't because I run home for lunch to see my dog. So when I drive, it's literally 5-7 minutes from door to door, plus maybe 5-6 minutes for parking. We also have a decent public transit system here, so most people don't drive very often.

Gas: Not that bad if you go to the cheaper stations, and even at the expensive ones, it's still not $4.00! Plus, as I said, my commute is nothing - so I only fill the tank 2-3 times a month. Another thing that helps is that I drive a Honda 5-speed, which gets really good gas mileage (hybrids are also extremely popular here).

Longer hours & lines: I work a 9-hour day, with a 1-hour unpaid lunch & 2 paid 15-minute breaks... as far as I know, that's pretty normal in any state. As for the lines, it really depends on where you shop, and what hours you go. I'd think lines are worse in smaller towns, where everybody HAS to shop at the same place.

Parking: Yeah, that's a real hassle if you're going downtown... but my work reimburses me whenever I go downtown for meetings, so I just park at the city garages (which always have spots available). Where I regularly work & live, street parking is never a problem, since it's not a busy part of town.

Quote:
Yeah you're salaries might be higher but to afford the average 800k house, both parents need to be making 100k a piece. I'm sure you can get that kind of salary in SF, if you want a house though you need to be married and have two family income or 200k a person.
Sorry, but that's just not true... I know plenty of single people who own homes (sometimes condos/townhouses, but it's still theirs!), and couples with less than $200K who own them as well. My best friend & her husband just bought a house for $950K, and they make around $120K combined. Don't ask me how they did it, since I know nothing about real estate, but the proof is in the pudding! Also, a lot of single people will buy a home, then rent out a room or in-law to help with costs - that's what my boss does.

Okay, so the bottom line? Life is only stressful if you let it be that way, and not everyone in the city is broke & angry. To each his own, so I'm not saying anything negative about the suburbs/country... but cities aren't the horrible nightmare some of you think they are.
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Old 05-02-2007, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Bay Area, CA
29,038 posts, read 45,065,598 times
Reputation: 20425
Quote:
Originally Posted by gardener34 View Post
Personally I have lived in city, suburb, and country. And I never could get used to the "always having to watch your back" feel of the city. Keeping everything I own under absolute lock and key 100% of the time. (I still retain that habit here in the country though)
I still like suburbs best (where I grew up). Much as they are maligned. Relatively safe and if you pick the right town, relatively inexpensive. AND they are close enough to commute in a half hour to the city if you want important culture.
I grew up in the suburbs (San Mateo), and definitely see the advantages for a family... my sister & her husband are still on the Peninsula, and are extremely happy there. They're getting ready to have their first baby (due in September! ), and look forward to raising her in the suburbs. But as for myself, I'm a young-ish, single woman, and was bored to tears in the burbs! I also got sick of the constant sunshine - yes, I'm weird - and longed for the fog & cold of San Francisco. I'm so glad I made the decision to move here, since I now have SO many choices for cuisines, shopping, friends, social activities, views, etc. Maybe I'll return to the suburbs one day, if/when I'm married and starting a family... but for now, I'm happier as a city girl.

Oh, but in the Bay Area, most of the suburbs (at least on the Peninsula) cost as much or MORE than the city - at least in terms of real estate. So I guess it depends on the metro area, as far as prices and weather go. Our suburbs are also more "yuppie-fied" for the most part, which kinda gets on my nerves after a while.
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Old 05-02-2007, 02:47 PM
 
1,486 posts, read 4,030,071 times
Reputation: 501
It's funny how the people that are complaining about cities normally don't even live in the city. They live in the burbs or exurbs.
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Old 05-02-2007, 04:56 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
414 posts, read 2,417,212 times
Reputation: 296
Quote:
Originally Posted by gizmo980 View Post
Sorry, but that's just not true... I know plenty of single people who own homes (sometimes condos/townhouses, but it's still theirs!), and couples with less than $200K who own them as well. My best friend & her husband just bought a house for $950K, and they make around $120K combined. Don't ask me how they did it, since I know nothing about real estate, but the proof is in the pudding! Also, a lot of single people will buy a home, then rent out a room or in-law to help with costs - that's what my boss does.
Combined income of 120k should afford at maximum a 480k house.

I want to take out a 30 year fixed rate mortgage and conservatively have enough to pay extra each month or save up if I lost my job etc still make monthly payment for 4-6 months.

People try to stretch too far. I would never use an interest only mortgage or an ARM. 40, 50 year mortgages, second mortgages on the downpayment no way.

Say no to lender devises like that cuz you're gonna be sorry down the road. 30 year, 20, 15 year fixed rate mortgages is the way to go.
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Old 05-02-2007, 05:47 PM
 
Location: Bay Area, CA
29,038 posts, read 45,065,598 times
Reputation: 20425
Quote:
Originally Posted by wallstreet1986 View Post
Combined income of 120k should afford at maximum a 480k house.

I want to take out a 30 year fixed rate mortgage and conservatively have enough to pay extra each month or save up if I lost my job etc still make monthly payment for 4-6 months.

People try to stretch too far. I would never use an interest only mortgage or an ARM. 40, 50 year mortgages, second mortgages on the downpayment no way.

Say no to lender devises like that cuz you're gonna be sorry down the road. 30 year, 20, 15 year fixed rate mortgages is the way to go.
You were saying one COULDN'T buy a home with less than $200K income, and I said you could... never implied it was the smartest loan or mortgage plan, did I? But I think my friends actually had a bunch of savings, which they used to give a bigger down payment - my sister & her husband did the same, and also started with a townhouse and "moved up" from there. So my point remains, there are ways to do it.
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Old 05-02-2007, 06:14 PM
 
Location: Portland, OR
414 posts, read 2,417,212 times
Reputation: 296
Quote:
Originally Posted by gizmo980 View Post
You were saying one COULDN'T buy a home with less than $200K income, and I said you could... never implied it was the smartest loan or mortgage plan, did I? But I think my friends actually had a bunch of savings, which they used to give a bigger down payment - my sister & her husband did the same, and also started with a townhouse and "moved up" from there. So my point remains, there are ways to do it.
Ah gotcha. Yes there are.
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Old 05-02-2007, 06:20 PM
 
Location: Lakewood, CO
353 posts, read 378,941 times
Reputation: 50
Best cities to make a living and raise a family:

Boise, Denver, Dallas, Phoenix, Houston, St. Petersburg.

The common denominator is that these cities are more concerned about creating jobs and family-friendly enivronments than glitzy, culture-filled meccas for urbanites and cosmopolitans. San Francisco, New York, and Boston are no places to raise a family or make a living. If you're some fancy-pants 20-something hipster you'll love it. But if you're a church-going, job-seeking, family person best go to Denver, Boise, or Houston.
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Old 05-02-2007, 07:15 PM
 
Location: Sverige och USA
702 posts, read 2,798,410 times
Reputation: 417
Speak for yourself.

People stereotype so much, mostly due to ignorance or just from the past.

We live in Massachusetts, close to Boston and we are prospering quite fine, thank you. We manage to find a nice house in a nice neighborhood and we are not paying through the nose. We just made a decision not to buy a McMansion. It's that easy. Taxes are not that high either. It is about the same as when I lived in Atlanta. To each his own.
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Old 05-03-2007, 12:31 AM
 
Location: Heartland Florida
9,324 posts, read 23,816,954 times
Reputation: 4901
Evidently many people love those cities, as evidenced here. Good for the environment as cities are more efficient than suburbs, and use less land area. As for me I just can't feel good in a controlled environment, whether big city or suburbs with zoning and/or HOA. Rural give you independance, and natural beauty, as well as bugs and breakdowns. But if I was raising a family it would be much better in a home than an apartment. Also it's my preference to live in an environment not controlled by others, and where you aren't within arm's reach of more homo sapiens. Just stepping outside for fresh fruit or vegetables from the garden, going fishing or hunting, rowing down a creek, river or lake, spending time with friends. In the city it seems like all the recreation is expensive. Also in a city there's a lonely feeling from being around so many people not interacting with each other.

I do agree though that big city is better than Mc Mansion , but cities need to be less expensive to survive long-term I think.
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