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Old 11-30-2012, 11:02 PM
 
7 posts, read 25,324 times
Reputation: 11

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Hello,

I have lived on the west coast all my life and am currently living in Oregon. I am looking to move somewhere in New England, but I have limited income since I don't have a job right now. I have some money from my mobile home that I sold, but once that is gone, I'm in trouble unless I find a job. I'm hoping that where ever I move I will have more luck finding a job. My field is very competitive and that usually isn't an issue regardless. I work in the legal field as a legal assistant. I have problems with my feet so I can't take a job where I am on my feet most of the day. Luckily, that hasn't been an issue in my field.

Anyways, I want to move somewhere it is not hot and a place where the economy is doing fairly well or better (is there such a place out east?), pet-friendly, low monthly rent and utilities (though I figure out the total price of utilities included with the rent), a place where there are lots of jobs, and a place where there is good public transportation.

Okay, now I realize this is my dream or maybe everyone else's, but I thought I would throw it out there. Can't hurt to ask, right? Besides, maybe I can get some good suggestions. I'm looking to rent an apartment or do a rent to own and maybe rent out some of the rooms to help me with rent. I'm use to paying $470 a month for my two bedroom. I only need a studio or 1 bedroom. I know out east I may end up paying more, but I wanted to see if there were other places that might be affordable that I could commute to or a city I may have never considered. Any other ideas, let me know.

I really want to live near or be able to commute to Boston. There seems to be a lot of jobs out there in my field, but it is super expensive. I thought, maybe if I lived in Rhode Island or somewhere and commute by the T line into Boston it might be doable. If that is unrealistic, maybe there is something else. Any ideas?

Thank you.
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Old 12-01-2012, 09:10 AM
 
Location: Westwood, MA
3,610 posts, read 4,671,831 times
Reputation: 4649
Providence to Boston is doable, but I would advise against it. For starters, a Zone 8 pass is $314 a month, which is a significant chunk of what you're paying for a two bedroom apartment. Factor in the three hours a day you'd lose to commuting and that just isn't a great option. Providence is cheaper than Boston, could you find a job there? The Rhode Island economy is pretty weak right now, though, so Providence would fail your second request.

Perhaps you should look first to see if there are opportunities in Boston and what they might pay. Based on that you can probably figure out what your budget is. The pay should be better than wherever you are now, because the rent almost certainly will be. Depending on what you do and what you're hoping to have that can tell you if the move is realistic.
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Old 12-01-2012, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Beverly, Mass
940 posts, read 1,631,729 times
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Salem has Essex County courthouse, and a lot of law offices. Also a lot of rentals, starting at $1,200 and may be cheaper in an older building, or a not so nice part of the city. It's 30 minutes from Boston by train, and has very good walkability in downtown.
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Old 12-01-2012, 12:39 PM
 
Location: Springfield and brookline MA
1,244 posts, read 2,521,722 times
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You could try the Springfield area,not really close to Boston but a little more affordable. The public transit is very good via PVTA and you can really be car free in the immediate Springfield area. Job market not as strong as the Boston metro but still better than most of the country. As far as rents go you could probably get a 1br or studio for around 850-1000.
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Old 12-01-2012, 10:53 PM
 
13,322 posts, read 25,574,131 times
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I don't think N.E. is the place for OP. Does "pet-friendly" mean a dog? Renting with a dog is quite an issue in the Boston area, and if OP is living far from a job and commuting by train, the dog will be alone way too long if even allowed. Any place I can think of with public transport is expensive, and if you move somewhere relatively expensive without a job, you can be stranded there, unable to leave.
I sympathize with not wanting somewhere hot. I wouldn't either. Let's see... if I was in the OP's position, I don't know where in N.E. might make sense. I might consider a place like Denver before N.E. The prices in Salem don't sound like OP's range, although it might work as a place.
Going without a job scares me. That's just me.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:26 PM
 
5,772 posts, read 13,733,677 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
I don't think N.E. is the place for OP. Does "pet-friendly" mean a dog? Renting with a dog is quite an issue in the Boston area, and if OP is living far from a job and commuting by train, the dog will be alone way too long if even allowed. Any place I can think of with public transport is expensive, and if you move somewhere relatively expensive without a job, you can be stranded there, unable to leave.
I sympathize with not wanting somewhere hot. I wouldn't either. Let's see... if I was in the OP's position, I don't know where in N.E. might make sense. I might consider a place like Denver before N.E. The prices in Salem don't sound like OP's range, although it might work as a place.
Going without a job scares me. That's just me.
These are all good points Brightdog makes here, but to home in on the question of weather, bear in mind that most places in southern New England might seem hot compared to Oregon.

But if you've really got your sights set on the Boston area, in addition to Konfetka's suggestion of Salem, you may find that downtown Waltham, Watertown around Watertown Square, and some parts of Quincy will have public transit and rents that are fairly low by Boston standards, while still being safe areas that are not run down.
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Old 12-03-2012, 07:58 PM
 
1,924 posts, read 3,020,289 times
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You might want to also look in the Worcester area. I know a few people that do not have cars and get everywhere on the bus. If you wanted to go to Boston for the day, you can take the train from Worcester. There are also many law firms in Worcester. There are three big firms and a lot of smaller firms.
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Old 12-04-2012, 07:33 AM
miu
 
Location: MA/NH
17,152 posts, read 34,653,229 times
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selah117 - I think that you should also see if you can line up a job as a legal assistant BEFORE you move anywhere. And find out what that job is paying in the cities you are thinking about moving to. At the very least, peruse the local craigslists in the job section.
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:31 AM
 
288 posts, read 517,035 times
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My total commute a day is 2 hours round trip. But I am only 13 miles away from the heart of Boston, and the commuter rail is $212 a month for zone 3. On each trip, I spend 30 minutes on the commuter rail, 10 minutes on the subway, and 20 minutes walking on sidewalks and up and down stairs. The commute in the winter is a pain and you can expect to add another 15-20 minutes for delays when it snows. I don't know how far away Rhode Island is, but don't just calculate the commute on the commuter rail schedule alone. You have to consider the walking door to door, subway transfers, and possible delay (what if you miss a train--when's the next one?) It also gets dark here early in Boston at 4:30pm during the winter. Something to consider if you care about safety.

Personally, I don't think you would save money being that far out. It might be better to find a roommate or two and split the costs of rent which many people in Boston do.

I would also try to talk to other legal assistants or lawyers in the Boston area first to get the lay of the land before you make a permanent move. Certainly, please try to line up a job first or try to make connections first because "who you know" will help you get your foot through the door. Usually public advertisements get hundreds of resumes; your chances get higher if you hear about a position advertised "internally" and someone can vouch for you. Also, there are a lot of head hunting firms here, so it wouldn't hurt to try them especially if you don't get a job right away and need temp work.

My husband is an attorney in the public sector, which before the recession was normally not competitive because of the lower pay. But two years ago, his position got 500 resumes after it was posted internally. That's, well, just crazy. His resume is impeccable, but I hate to imagine what his chances would have been if they had posted the job nationally. I know lawyers are different from legal assistants, but in my opinion, the law field is over-saturated here. There are more grads with JD's then actual law positions, especially in the Boston area which has lots of law schools (and at least three top-tier ones at that and many lower tier ones that are reputable among local employers). There's lots of desperate young law school grads who are willing to do any kind of legal work to pay off law school debt and prevent resume gaps.

Obviously, you would know your own field better than me and I don't know your experience level or education background. An experienced and mature legal assistant will beat out a rookie any day. But my husband, who went to law school here, and is an active alum, gets lots of sob stories from young JDs. Just so you know, the public sector (court houses, local governments) are incredibly pinched for funds. They've gotten rid of lots of stepping stone positions (internships, fellowships) and some have been talking about reducing court hours. Again, I don't know how that affects legal assistants, but word in the local law community--it's not the best time to be a young person with a JD in the legal field in Boston. But perhaps that won't affect you. Again, I strongly recommend you get a bunch of second opinions before doing anything permanent.

Last edited by sharencare; 12-04-2012 at 11:03 AM..
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:24 PM
 
13,322 posts, read 25,574,131 times
Reputation: 20505
OP is good to consider the dog. It would be a heartbreak if the dog became homeless because of a housing issue, and many do.
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