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Old 10-21-2014, 03:14 PM
 
17 posts, read 18,986 times
Reputation: 19

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Greetings everyone,

I am posting on these forums because I want to get a general idea of where it is that I should start seeking employment, given what I would like to accomplish. I am a 25 year old male currently working as an adjunct in California. I work in several community colleges and at the local university as well teaching a few classes here and there. I have an M.A. degree in Speech Communication, and have about 4 years of teaching experience to my name. Although I do make a fairly decent living from it, (i.e., roughly $42,000) I can never really achieve my goals if I stay in this area. Further, I will be graduating with my Ed.D degree in the next 12-18 months and would like to start looking for a permanent full time job at a good community college. If I stayed here I would probably see my salary increase by around $8,000 as soon as I graduated with my Ed.D. However, even $50,000 a year is not enough to raise a family and buy a good plot of land in CA without going into massive debt.

With this said, I am looking for the following characteristics in an area where I would like to move to.

1. Community colleges to work in (Given that my Ed.D and most of my teaching and committee experience has been focused around the CC system). I would also prefer an area that has hospitals, public health services, etc. My partner works in the healthcare industry (B.S. Public Health) and needs to be able to find employment at local hospitals, clinics, etc.

2. Area with a fairly good selection of quality land where I could grow the local foods. I don't much care what I grow, as long as I can grow reliably at least 4-6 months a year. I plan to use the food for my own personal consumption + storage more than anything. I also plan to have a bit of livestock such as a few goats, chickens, and or ducks. Not a traditional "farm" but just enough for my family to get by.

3. I am looking to buy about 2-10 acres and would like to be able to purchase this in an area that has access to electricity, water, and fairly close access to sewage would be preferable. I am perfectly okay with having to provide my own propane for heating and firewood as well. I would be willing to pay about $6000 per acre for an average location, and $8000 per acre for a good location. My budget limit for land is roughly $25,000.

4. An area where I and my family could feel safe (i.e., fairly low crime rate). I currently live in one of the most crime ridden cities in California. Needless to say I am not happy here. I would like to be able to step outside my house and not have to worry about being robbed, stabbed, shot, etc.

5. A state with a lot of natural beauty and plenty of rain / water in some form. I do not mind the cold! I also do not mind low population areas so long as I can secure a good job. In fact, I actually prefer rural and low population areas. I know, it is kind of ironic considering my academic background.

I am not necessarily committed to move to just Nebraska. If I can find what I am looking for in Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Oregon, or Washington state I would be very happy there as well. I would like to stay in or around the Mountain west and move no further east than Nebraska.

I would appreciate any insights, personal experience, or stories you all may have that could help me out. Quite frankly, I am in the preliminary stages of looking for a place to settle down, so any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you !!!
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Old 10-23-2014, 06:59 AM
 
Location: Sioux Falls, SD area
3,146 posts, read 4,613,323 times
Reputation: 5311
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ilove_potatoes View Post
Greetings everyone,

I am posting on these forums because I want to get a general idea of where it is that I should start seeking employment, given what I would like to accomplish. I am a 25 year old male currently working as an adjunct in California. I work in several community colleges and at the local university as well teaching a few classes here and there. I have an M.A. degree in Speech Communication, and have about 4 years of teaching experience to my name. Although I do make a fairly decent living from it, (i.e., roughly $42,000) I can never really achieve my goals if I stay in this area. Further, I will be graduating with my Ed.D degree in the next 12-18 months and would like to start looking for a permanent full time job at a good community college. If I stayed here I would probably see my salary increase by around $8,000 as soon as I graduated with my Ed.D. However, even $50,000 a year is not enough to raise a family and buy a good plot of land in CA without going into massive debt.

With this said, I am looking for the following characteristics in an area where I would like to move to.

1. Community colleges to work in (Given that my Ed.D and most of my teaching and committee experience has been focused around the CC system). I would also prefer an area that has hospitals, public health services, etc. My partner works in the healthcare industry (B.S. Public Health) and needs to be able to find employment at local hospitals, clinics, etc.

2. Area with a fairly good selection of quality land where I could grow the local foods. I don't much care what I grow, as long as I can grow reliably at least 4-6 months a year. I plan to use the food for my own personal consumption + storage more than anything. I also plan to have a bit of livestock such as a few goats, chickens, and or ducks. Not a traditional "farm" but just enough for my family to get by.

3. I am looking to buy about 2-10 acres and would like to be able to purchase this in an area that has access to electricity, water, and fairly close access to sewage would be preferable. I am perfectly okay with having to provide my own propane for heating and firewood as well. I would be willing to pay about $6000 per acre for an average location, and $8000 per acre for a good location. My budget limit for land is roughly $25,000.

4. An area where I and my family could feel safe (i.e., fairly low crime rate). I currently live in one of the most crime ridden cities in California. Needless to say I am not happy here. I would like to be able to step outside my house and not have to worry about being robbed, stabbed, shot, etc.

5. A state with a lot of natural beauty and plenty of rain / water in some form. I do not mind the cold! I also do not mind low population areas so long as I can secure a good job. In fact, I actually prefer rural and low population areas. I know, it is kind of ironic considering my academic background.

I am not necessarily committed to move to just Nebraska. If I can find what I am looking for in Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Oregon, or Washington state I would be very happy there as well. I would like to stay in or around the Mountain west and move no further east than Nebraska.

I would appreciate any insights, personal experience, or stories you all may have that could help me out. Quite frankly, I am in the preliminary stages of looking for a place to settle down, so any help or advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you !!!
You may not want to move any farther east, but the state that most meets all your requirements AND has a very strong community college presence is Iowa. Iowa could be a little light on the "natural beauty" requirement however. Here's some info.
https://www.educateiowa.gov/communit...unity_Colleges
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Old 10-25-2014, 02:25 AM
 
17 posts, read 18,986 times
Reputation: 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmgg View Post
You may not want to move any farther east, but the state that most meets all your requirements AND has a very strong community college presence is Iowa. Iowa could be a little light on the "natural beauty" requirement however. Here's some info.
https://www.educateiowa.gov/communit...unity_Colleges
Iowa huh, well I guess it doesn't hurt to consider it as well. Truth be told the hardest part of what I want is landing the full time job. Once that happens the rest can get into motion. I will look at Iowa, thanks !
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Old 10-25-2014, 09:59 AM
 
Location: Nebraska
4,231 posts, read 7,241,537 times
Reputation: 6679
If you have been living in California and you move to a rural area in Nebraska you or your partner(?) will not find jobs with salary levels even close to what you were making in California. Even though the cost of living is very low in all sections of Nebraska compared to California $25,000.00 to buy land is going to be iffy. In Western Nebraska buying small acreages is difficult. It is easier to buy 1,000 acres than it is ten. You can probably find something that meets your needs for $25,000 but it will be difficult.

Even after you find the land you will have the expense of either going on to Rural water or digging a well. A septic tank will most likely be your best option for sewage. Running electrical service to your house COULD be expensive also. Firewood is not a good choice. Currently corn prices are fairly low and if they stay that way or get cheaper buying a corn burning stove may be a good choice. Natural gas prices are cheap but getting the service to your house may not be.

One thing you might want to consider, especially before moving to a rural area, is the attitude you bring with you. What do I mean by this? Are you familiar with the term Redneck? It might be a good idea to familiarize yourself with the term because there are a lot of us in Nebraska that more (enlightened?) folks from BLUE states like California look down on. If you believe in things like Abortion, Gun Control and and Gay Marriage do yourself and the State of Nebraska a favor and don't come here.

If my comments offend you. . . well that is TS. However if you agree with what I have said good luck in your search and welcome to Nebraska if you make the move. We have a great state and we want to keep it that way.

A Gunluvver2
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Old 10-25-2014, 10:10 AM
 
198 posts, read 133,778 times
Reputation: 845
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gunluvver2 View Post
If you have been living in California and you move to a rural area in Nebraska you or your partner(?) will not find jobs with salary levels even close to what you were making in California. Even though the cost of living is very low in all sections of Nebraska compared to California $25,000.00 to buy land is going to be iffy. In Western Nebraska buying small acreages is difficult. It is easier to buy 1,000 acres than it is ten. You can probably find something that meets your needs for $25,000 but it will be difficult.

Even after you find the land you will have the expense of either going on to Rural water or digging a well. A septic tank will most likely be your best option for sewage. Running electrical service to your house COULD be expensive also. Firewood is not a good choice. Currently corn prices are fairly low and if they stay that way or get cheaper buying a corn burning stove may be a good choice. Natural gas prices are cheap but getting the service to your house may not be.

One thing you might want to consider, especially before moving to a rural area, is the attitude you bring with you. What do I mean by this? Are you familiar with the term Redneck? It might be a good idea to familiarize yourself with the term because there are a lot of us in Nebraska that more (enlightened?) folks from BLUE states like California look down on. If you believe in things like Abortion, Gun Control and and Gay Marriage do yourself and the State of Nebraska a favor and don't come here.

If my comments offend you. . . well that is TS. However if you agree with what I have said good luck in your search and welcome to Nebraska if you make the move. We have a great state and we want to keep it that way.

A Gunluvver2
And remember Nebraska state motto. "Building a bridge to the twentieth century".
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Old 10-26-2014, 03:15 PM
 
17 posts, read 18,986 times
Reputation: 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Peester View Post
And remember Nebraska state motto. "Building a bridge to the twentieth century".
Lol I'm sure Gunluvver does not represent the vast majority of people in Nebraska. With that said, I do understand that it is a far more conservative state than CA.

I consider myself a tolerant person and am all for gay marriage, and a woman's right to choose. Am I socially liberal? You bet I am. Am I for gun control? Heavens no. I'm an agnostic individual who follows the motto, "live and let live." To that end, I personally don't care / have no qualm with anyone who chooses to live their life in a different way from my own. In my home I am fiscally conservative and choose to live a socially conservative life with the exception of religious beliefs. When it comes to my political beliefs, I am a fiscal conservative but vote socially liberal. Do I vote democrat or Republican? Neither. Both are bought and paid for by corporations, special interests groups, and unions. I typically vote equal parts Green Party, independent, progressive, and at times libertarian. Heck I voted for Rocky Anderson in 2012.

I have a few friends from grad school (M.A.) who lived in Nebraska for a few years and then moved away. They did mention the low pay, but also the low cost of living. Most of them worked in business and made good money, but found better opportunities elsewhere. One in particular worked as a communications consultant for various companies making about $52,000. No where near the $70,000 one would make doing it in CA, but still a good salary. I'm fully aware of the fact I will learn less in Nebraska along with several of the states I am considering.


With all that said, thank you both for the great information regarding land purchasing / use.
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Old 10-27-2014, 02:56 AM
 
Location: Lincoln, NE
84 posts, read 109,891 times
Reputation: 227
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ilove_potatoes View Post
When it comes to my political beliefs, I am a fiscal conservative but vote socially liberal.
I don't think that most Nebraskans are actually "fiscally conservative". Most Nebraskans are more than willing to raise taxes to pay for all sorts of things, like building new schools and roads. Most people with decent paying jobs in Lincoln work for either the state or local government. If someone ever organizes an economically socialist, but socially conservative political party in Nebraska, it could become a major force.
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Old 10-27-2014, 08:09 AM
 
Location: Western Nebraskansas
2,707 posts, read 5,340,732 times
Reputation: 2406
Quote:
One thing you might want to consider, especially before moving to a rural area, is the attitude you bring with you. What do I mean by this? Are you familiar with the term Redneck? It might be a good idea to familiarize yourself with the term because there are a lot of us in Nebraska that more (enlightened?) folks from BLUE states like California look down on. If you believe in things like Abortion, Gun Control and and Gay Marriage do yourself and the State of Nebraska a favor and don't come here.
Good heavens…

First of all, California brought us Ronald Reagan. The entire state is not San Francisco or LA.
And secondly, I'm a lifetime Nebraskan and I support all of those things, even out here in ranch country. To be sure, if s/he finds a job in one of the college towns, s/he'll find a far greater contingency of like minds. Having spent the first 2/3 of my life in college towns, they tend to be more open-minded than the rest of the "redneck" towns in the neighborhood.
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Old 11-15-2014, 07:31 AM
 
3 posts, read 3,690 times
Reputation: 12
Look into Council Bluffs, IA...right across the Missouri River from Omaha, NE. I was born and raised in Omaha and moved to an acreage outside of
CB after 32yrs in Omaha. I am always telling myself how happy I am I did the move..why, because you get all the amenities of Omaha, but your cost of living is much less. It only takes me 15 minutes to get to downtown Omaha!! You should also look into Iowa Western Community College for employment. We live just south of Crescent, IA in the Loess Hills. A brand new Walmart is opening that will take me only about 5 minutes to get to from I-29(I know, but you can't beat the convenience). We also just got a huge brand new Casey's Gas Station in Crescent. Land may be expensive at around 9,000 to 10,000 an acre, but there are some very reasonably priced acreages. Hope this helps!
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Old 12-16-2014, 05:03 PM
 
318 posts, read 415,338 times
Reputation: 641
.
.....After giving the OP's wish list a fair amount of pondering & considering the fact that potatoes are deeply esteemed: Have you, perchance, looked into Ellensburg, Washington? May be a good fit, if you still are researching:

.... http://www.city-data.com/forum/search.php?searchid=14786633

.....Ellensburg has Central Washington College, is near one of the largest areas of potato growing in the USA, grows veggies & more pretty well, is safe with breathtaking natural beauty. Granted, is a bit drier than you express you're looking for though the community is a good one.


.
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