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Old 02-06-2020, 05:54 PM
 
Location: Passed out on the trail to Hanakapi'ai
1,637 posts, read 3,677,784 times
Reputation: 1257

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We have been offered a great job in Phoenix. We have asked friends about Phoenix and were forwarded this from a couple.

How true is it?
( Don't take any of this personally. Its obviously one person's opinion)

================================================== ===

I spent one year living in Phoenix and all in all, I did not like it there. But I'm not out to trash the city, I just want to be accurate and thorough with the good points as well as the not so good points. You should preferably visit any place before you decide to move there and not rely just on information that you've read on the Internet.

So here it is...

PROS

Pleasant climate from around October through around May. The summer heat is manageable as long as you drink plenty of water and don't walk around outside barefoot, lol. Seriously though, three or four
uncomfortable months are an easy trade-off for the other seven or eight months of glorious weather.

Beautiful desert environs. Gorgeous sunsets, desert flora & fauna (the high desert country as you head north of Phoenix is especially picturesque as you head towards Sedona or Flagstaff).

Dry air means no mold, mildew or car rust. Even better, very few mosquitoes or gnats.

Excellent infrastructure. A modern city, well-planned, well laid-out and easy to navigate. An extensive freeway system without any toll roads. For a city of its population size, Phoenix is surprisingly uncongested. Your commutes may be lengthy in terms of mileage but traffic usually flows pretty well. Even if you encounter a traffic jam, you can usually find an alternate route to get you to where you're going.

The roads are always easy to drive with no ice or snow or potholes to worry about, and the entire area (though surrounded by mountains) is very flat.

Very affordable housing and rents. One of the cheapest major metropolitan areas you will find anywhere in the U.S.

Well-connected to the rest of the country. A very good international airport (Sky Harbor) that is well-served by many airlines and domestic routes. The added presence of a feeder airport (Mesa-Gateway) means that airfares to/from Phoenix tend to be real bargains. Of course if you prefer not to fly, Phoenix is also within driving distance to many major metropolitan areas such as Las Vegas (5.5 hours), San Diego (7 hours) or Los Angeles (8 hours).

For sports fans, Phoenix is represented by sports teams in all four professional leagues (MLB, NBA, NHL and NFL)

Relatively clean. Although smog can be a minor problem at certain times of the year, I never found there to be much trash or litter around the city. Then again, this is probably because there aren't too many pedestrians around! (see Cons).

CONS

The people: rude, flaky, obnoxious, aggressive, uneducated, unsophisticated, meth-addicted, rednecky, racist and xenophobic. I need to stress that this is strictly my own opinion, but I found the locals to be at least one (or a combination of some or all) of the above.

Characterless. A giant sea of strip malls, chain restaurants, Orwellian neighborhoods and tract housing, all surrounding an empty shell of a downtown. Very commercialized and generic. Has the look and feel of a giant suburb, or a cluster of smaller suburbs. Lacks a certain cosmopolitan vibe.

Awkward, insular lifestyle. You often feel like you're living in a bubble, due partly to the intense climate and partly to the urban sprawl that makes you so dependent on your vehicle. You'll leave your air-conditioned house and step into your air-conditioned car, from there you'll scurry into your air-conditioned office or the air-conditioned supermarket or mall and then back in reverse order. If you have a pet, may as well potty train them. You can't let a dog or cat outside during the daytime for most of the year - they can suffer third-degree burns.

The area is very spread-out and little to nothing is within walking distance of your house or office. You'll find that you'll never really see or interact with your neighbors except to wave at them as your automatic garage door is closing. I always found it ironic how people ostensibly move to Phoenix for the weather, and yet once they arrive there, they really spend relatively little time outdoors.

Disgusting tap water. You might hear a local bragging to you that "Atlanta has a 30-day water supply, while ours is 30 years". Be that as it may, the quality of the H2O sucks. It's hard water, and whenever you wash your pots and pans you'll often find this weird residue that never seems to go away.

Subpar job market. Phoenix's economy was hit hard by the subprime mortgage crisis, indicating that the economy is not diversified enough. Arizona tends to rank high nationwide in unemployment, and it is also a right-to-work state with relatively low wages. Keep in mind that worker productivity is always going to be negatively impacted in such a hot climate.

Boring, lifeless downtown. With the exception of the NBA/NHL arena and MLB baseball stadium, downtown

Phoenix is strictly a business district with little or nothing in the way of entertainment or nightlife. To get your groove on, you actually have to head OUT of the city to the suburbs such as Glendale or Scottsdale. I found Phoenix to be a very odd city in this particular respect.

Very little cultural diversity. For a city with such a large population, Phoenix is sorely lacking in this category. The local idea of "diversity" is the city's many Mexican chain restaurants and a few tiny shops selling Native American jewelry. It's difficult to find any type of international cuisine there (other than Mexican, and even that isn't as good as the locals will try to claim). Sky Harbor Airport has no direct international flights anywhere outside of North America, except for a sporadic flight to London (Emirates recently tried to launch a nonstop route to Dubai but it never materialized). In a nutshell: Phoenix is a big American city, but it is the last thing from an international city.

Urban sprawl and car-centric culture. Very spread-out. Public transportation is woeful. Forget what you may have read about that new light rail system. The metro area is much too big for it to be much use. Most people aren't too fond of standing outside waiting for a trolley in 110-degree heat anyway.

Ubiquitous soliciting and panhandling. Not one week will go by when you won't be walking through a parking lot into/out of a store, completely minding your own business when suddenly you are accosted by some white-trash goon or a group of 16 year-old punks asking you for money. This would happen to me even when I pulled into service stations just to get gas. I've never had this problem in any other region that I've ever lived in. But it would happen to me ALL the time when I lived in Phoenix. It gradually escalated from minor nuisance to major pain in the arse.

Crime/fraud. Arizona is #1 nationwide in identity theft and #1 in adult kidnappings. Both fraud and violent crime are big problems. Arizona is a border state with very strict drug laws. At the same time, it also has very permissive gun laws (e.g. the Castle Doctrine) and an Old West mentality. All of these factors combine.

Household pests, especially scorpions. I was lucky enough never to get stung by a scorpion, and I never even saw one. But it seemed that almost everyone else whom I met there had at least one run-in with these critters.

Illegal immigration. Another big problem in Phoenix. If you are thinking of starting any type of business there, make sure you fully vet your job applicants before hiring them!
High utility bills. You'll have your A/C running constantly for a good three months out of the year. Water bills tend to be very steep as well. You'll go through tanks of gas quickly as well due to the spread-out distances.

Atrocious public school system. Ranked at or near the bottom nationwide.

Extremely conservative (both in politics and religion). If you're Republican, you'll feel right at home there. But if you're a liberal yuppie from San Francisco or Boston or Washington, boy are you in for a real culture shock. Arizona is a solid-red state and it follows that Phoenix is too, since it is the state capital and the seat of government (note though, that Tucson, which is 120 miles to the southeast, is decidedly liberal). On religion: you may also find yourself getting hounded by proselytyzers as the area has a sizable population of Latter Day Saints and Jehovah's Witnesses.

Worst, most unsafe and aggressive drivers in the country. I've lived all over the country and Phoenix wins all awards in this category. They're absolute maniacs. Try to keep your cool if you're ever confronted with any type of similar situation and don't allow it to escalate. Remember what I wrote above about the gun laws and the Castle doctrine (...you can see where I am going with this).
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Old 02-06-2020, 06:12 PM
 
Location: 415->916->602
2,851 posts, read 1,760,821 times
Reputation: 3533
I didn't read over every con, since it is lengthy, but I wanna touch up on a few things:

I've been told that the people are flakey here but I haven't found that to be the case. (But the people I hang out with are from different parts of the country)

The job market here is getting very strong; stronger and more diverse than it was years ago.

I don't think Phoenix is as conservative as the that poster claims. I like to think it's a bit of purple. (half blue; half red)


But I do agree that the drivers are straight stupid over here and the panhandling is out of control here.
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Old 02-06-2020, 06:22 PM
 
12 posts, read 6,419 times
Reputation: 46
Some of these “cons” sound like “pros” to me. Does every city have to be like New York or LA? Also, the Phoenix valley has some great schools.
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Old 02-06-2020, 07:07 PM
 
Location: Oklahoma
9,320 posts, read 7,289,969 times
Reputation: 8294
Quote:
Originally Posted by UpstateBound19 View Post
Some of these “cons” sound like “pros” to me. Does every city have to be like New York or LA? Also, the Phoenix valley has some great schools.
80% of those "cons" are pretty universal in explosive growth sun belt cities.

And I also got a chuckle out of the fact that this person only spent one summer in Phoenix. To me a lot of the problem of Phoenix is enduring the summer year after year. In my seven years in Arizona I found that the summer heat made me cranky because it lasted so long each year. And each year I got a little more impatient in my wait for October to arrive.

But Phoenix is really nice overall IMO if you are willing to focus on the good things that it offers and put up with the bad things. I am where I am now because of family but wouldn't object to moving back there. Arizona is a great place to explore and it's close to some wonderful stuff in the surrounding states as well as Mexico.
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Old 02-06-2020, 07:14 PM
 
416 posts, read 299,294 times
Reputation: 501
I would argue that Phoenix itself is politically blue the closer you get to the center of it.
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Old 02-06-2020, 07:19 PM
 
7,567 posts, read 4,783,592 times
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Nothing we haven’t heard a hundred times with varying degrees of accuracy
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Old 02-06-2020, 07:31 PM
 
3,758 posts, read 2,613,606 times
Reputation: 2849
The first and likely biggest beef:
The people: rude, flaky, obnoxious, aggressive, uneducated, unsophisticated, meth-addicted, rednecky, racist and xenophobic. I need to stress that this is strictly my own opinion, but I found the locals to be at least one (or a combination of some or all) of the above.


However, as is stated it's one persons opinion. Mesa for example is far more blue collar than say San Diego or San Francisco. Yet this is neither good nor bad. Just different.

I find the drivers in Cal just as bad as in the Phx metro. On the other hand I find Mesa residents are generally more polite than say San Francisco or San Diego.

Panhandling? I see a lot less in Mesa than in San Diego. San Francisco? Panhandling/those living on the streets is out of control.

Diversity? Well, not as much as a major Cal citiy but this doesn't bother me. I'm more concerned with the individual. (I am white. Wife non-white. Wife enjoys living in Mesa.)

Schools? Depends on the schools your children attend. I believe a good school is important but a child also needs a home environment conducive to learning.


Drawbacks:

Four extremely hot months a year.

One will certainly need a car and make sure it is in good running condition. You don't want to walk a long street to get to a bus stop in the middle of summer that' for sure.

Utilities are higher than I expected.

Can't speak for singles but I do have one young fellow renting from me who appears to do well with the ladies. Every time I go over the check the AC filter he's with a different lady friend. So, there's gotta be popular night spots somewhere.

Have notice Mesa shuts down by 10 pm.


Overall experience:
No regrets moving here.

Last edited by john3232; 02-06-2020 at 08:00 PM..
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Old 02-06-2020, 09:25 PM
Status: "waiting for 115 degrees" (set 25 days ago)
 
Location: northwest valley, az
2,709 posts, read 1,547,437 times
Reputation: 3620
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tenzo View Post
We have been offered a great job in Phoenix. We have asked friends about Phoenix and were forwarded this from a couple.

How true is it?
( Don't take any of this personally. Its obviously one person's opinion)

================================================== ===
All you need to know is right here...

https://www.city-data.com/forum/ariz...not-think.html
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Old 02-06-2020, 11:48 PM
 
2,111 posts, read 4,500,440 times
Reputation: 3899
Quote:
Originally Posted by wase4711 View Post
All you need to know is right here...

https://www.city-data.com/forum/ariz...not-think.html

Exactly. OP's cons list is just the tip of the iceberg.
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Old 02-07-2020, 12:28 AM
 
1,540 posts, read 1,345,678 times
Reputation: 2245
Pros
Sucks big time and great weather is end of October through first week in May. 100 degree days through the first week in October are not uncommon.
I think the desert is ugly.
True
True
True
True. Affordable for a mountain west state but not compared to some place like the southeast.
True
True
Mostly True. I do see a lot of trash on the side of the 101 as it cuts through Mesa and Chandler.

Cons
False. Maryvale, Sunnyslope and central Mesa have meth problems but overall it's not an issue.
True
True. Though, third degree pet burns???? Are you for real??? We had a dog door and she chose to sleep out on the padio in the morning and would get in the pool if she got hot.
True
True
False
False
Mostly True. Oh Oh. I cant drive 30min to Scottsdale or Tempe for something fun. It's just too hard
True. The area is almost entirely white or hispanic.
True
False
False. But, both Phoenix and Mesa were near the top of the car theft list for a number of years until they instituted the bait car program.
Definitely True. If you have date palms in your yard then you have scorpions.
True
True. Though it's spotty. Some areas have better schools then others.
False.
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