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Old 11-30-2011, 06:35 PM
 
6 posts, read 10,208 times
Reputation: 14

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My fiance and myself are planing to move to Montana two years from now.
I have my B.A in Communication (Not communication(s), with a minor in Business Management.
I am also in the middle of my Master's program for Communication.
She is about a year away from finishing her B.S in Microbiology.
We are both attending a public State University in Southern CA.
I have about a year's worth of internship experience working in the office of a
local political official. She will likely have about a year's worth of work
experience or internship experience at the UCSD laboratories by the time she graduates.

We are both Mexican American, first generation US citizens.

We are both fluent in both English and Spanish written and oral.

Both of us have been in academia most of our lives, so we have not held a "real" job outside of internships for longer than a year. Although we have both had paid internships in the past.

We want to go see Montana this coming spring in order to get a better feel for the state. We have never been there but I have wanted to live in Montana since I was a young boy. I have always wanted to get away from the big city and the fast paced life here. I want to work hard, but also have time to enjoy the fruits of my labor. It seems to me like the higher up you go here in the city, the less time for yourself you will have. I don't want my entire life to revolve around a 65 hour a week work schedule.

Both me and my fiance plan to get married in the next 15 months or so. We both want to live a good comfortable life some where more relaxed than Los Angeles or San Diego.

We were wondering how much we would be worth in Montana as potential employees. We were also curious to know if our particular skills and degree's would be a good fit in Montana.

We would like to be able to bring in somewhere around $45,000-$55,000 a year each in income. We plan to both work full time for the first few years. After about two years she has said she would scale back to part time in order to raise a child.

I am really not picky about work. I would prefer a solid community college teaching job, or something where I could be around people or writing. Decent benefits would be a plus.

As for my fiance, she would prefer something in the pharmaceutical industry.


I don't know if we should provide more information here for you guys to help us out. I don't feel very comfortable with a high level of self disclosure on the internet so I apologize if much of this post is vague.


Thanks for your help, I hope to get some wonderful replies from all of you.
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Old 11-30-2011, 06:57 PM
 
Location: Bozeman, Montana
1,191 posts, read 2,574,900 times
Reputation: 655
There is a lot of competition for jobs in Montana, even for advanced degrees, and the pay is lower than you may expect in more populated states.

Here is a link to the current openings at the BioScience Lab in Bozeman.
http://www.biosciencelabs.com/pages/35/Employment.html

Look through what is available on the state job service site to get a "real world" idea of what is available.

http://jobs.mt.gov

The major towns where you may find employment in your fields are Billings, Missoula, Helena, and Bozeman. When you visit the state, those towns would be the ones to fit into your scheduled research.

Hope that helps.

H.I.

Last edited by happiness is; 11-30-2011 at 07:06 PM..
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Old 11-30-2011, 08:56 PM
 
213 posts, read 598,801 times
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With your fiance's background, you may also want to look at Hamilton. It's one of those places that everyone wants to live, and most jobs are scarce and low-paying, but they do have two research facilities for pharmaceuticals which offer good wages for those lucky enough to get hired (Rocky Mountain Lab and a GlaxoSmithKline research facility). I'm not sure of their hiring specifics, but it's something to look into.

It sounds like you probably understand the importance of finding the jobs first before making a move, but that's common and solid advice for a Montana move. You'll also want to visit in the winter before making any commitments. If you're lifelong southern Californians, the weather could be a shocker.
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Old 11-30-2011, 09:27 PM
 
6 posts, read 10,208 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bongo403 View Post
With your fiance's background, you may also want to look at Hamilton. It's one of those places that everyone wants to live, and most jobs are scarce and low-paying, but they do have two research facilities for pharmaceuticals which offer good wages for those lucky enough to get hired (Rocky Mountain Lab and a GlaxoSmithKline research facility). I'm not sure of their hiring specifics, but it's something to look into.

It sounds like you probably understand the importance of finding the jobs first before making a move, but that's common and solid advice for a Montana move. You'll also want to visit in the winter before making any commitments. If you're lifelong southern Californians, the weather could be a shocker.

Yes, I know that no matter where you move the most important thing is knowing that you will be able to have a decent life in that place.

This is why I am doing some research years before I actually move. I also plan to go to UMT and MSU in order to do some networking and to get more acquainted with the communication departments.
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Old 12-01-2011, 09:48 AM
 
Location: Moscow
2,080 posts, read 3,070,623 times
Reputation: 2564
I don't mean to sound pessimistic. But, well I guess I am about to.

I don't think a person with little actual work experience and a shiny new MA in Communication (As in group comm., public speaking, etc, right? I have a similar degree) is likely to make $45k in MT. Living in Idaho I started out at $27k. Adjusting for inflation over the last 15 years-I'll bet you come in closer to $35k. Too balance this, you may find your expenses sig. lower than Southern Cal.

I echo the others standard advice as far as check it out in different seasons, come with a job, etc.
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Old 12-01-2011, 09:55 AM
 
Location: Bozeman, Montana
1,191 posts, read 2,574,900 times
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I ditto what Keim wrote.

Realistically, you have to be aware that the income you posted as your goal is not what jobs in Montana pay, in general. You will find that even at the universities, they hire on a short term basis in many instances, so there is no job security or need for them to pay what you would expect in other states.

H.I.
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Old 12-01-2011, 10:43 AM
 
6 posts, read 10,208 times
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Hmmm....is it possible for people like us to be able to buy a home in Montana or get decent paying jobs at this time there?

Is the cost of living really significantly lower in many cities of Montana than in Los Angeles or San Diego?

A basic 2 bedroom home no pool or anything special and almost no property in San Diego runs at around $330,000 ish now in a decent neighborhood.

Me and my fiance want to work hard and be able to own a decent size property, maybe 1 acre property and a home. That is our life goal.
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Old 12-01-2011, 11:24 AM
 
Location: Moscow
2,080 posts, read 3,070,623 times
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COL depends on where you live in MT. Eastern side of the state is a lot cheaper to buy a house, property, etc. Western side is more popular, thus costs more. Someplace like Bozeman is expensive. $330k will buy a nice house in eastern MT, and a very decent one in western MT.

Find a job first, and that will tell you what you can afford-just like any place else!

Is it possible for you to make a go of things? Certainly! Many do.
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Old 12-01-2011, 03:22 PM
 
Location: Bozeman, Montana
1,191 posts, read 2,574,900 times
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If you move here, keep your first property purchase small and in town. You are young enough to increase to a home on an acre later, if you want to.

I've known many family people who move here and want to buy a house with "land" outside of town right away. Then, they find that weed abatement is a problem, plowing their own road and driveway, expensive and time consuming, or irrigating and mowing a large lawn, and commuting into a job in town. Their kids have to be driven back and forth in winter months in the cold dark to school activities like sports and performances, and suddenly living on land outside of town doesn't seem so practical.

It is better not to contribute to the sprawl of subdivisions into agricultural land that is being paved over. Something important to consider, why buy rural land when you are not going to be a farmer... it ruins the natural view you would be moving here for, causes more public service problems, and takes range and farmland out of production.

When you think about all the images you have of Montana, of the wide open spaces, realize that there was a negative impact on our state when subdivisions were built over productive natural resource cropland, range land, and in forests. During the boom when people wanted to buy their own piece of Montana and advertising world-wide painted that picture, many places in rural areas were subdivided that were completely inappropriate, because the laws on subdivisions were very loose. The views were impacted, the county law enforcement and fire protection, the spread of noxious weeds, the loss of agricultural land, increased road maintenance and snow plowing... it is important when moving here to think about how you will not contribute to the negative impacts.

There are first-time homes available in Montana towns, even Bozeman, for less than $300,000. Just google the Montana real estate sites, and you'll see the range. Prices have gone down since the recession.

Hope that helps.

H.I.

Last edited by happiness is; 12-01-2011 at 04:21 PM.. Reason: adding info
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Old 12-02-2011, 11:10 AM
 
213 posts, read 598,801 times
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While housing costs in Montana really aren't less than the national average, I think you'll find them quite a bit less than southern California prices. Check out some of the real estate sites, the one for Missoula is www.missoularealestate.com.
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