Considering Portland.. Could use some help (Beaverton, Beaver: find a job, neighborhood, live)
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I think Portland would be great for you guys, especially if you have jobs lined up. Its exactly as you describe, somewhat gray and rainy Oct-May with the surprising sunny days in between, snow maybe 2-3 days out of the year, and nice summers. There are REAL seasons here. Portland is very medium, no huge museums, lots of parks, lots of bicyclists, a small zoo, lots of food/farmer's markets, lots of young, small entrepreneurs, central between mountain skiing and beaches, and lots of neighborhoods and communities. Portland is very liberal, very open and accepting, so I really don't see any kind of issue with being interracial aside from maybe just feeling like you're surrounded by a lot of white people. I'm not white and I don't feel any less accepted here than where I lived in California where it was maybe 50% white. At first it did bother me but then you see how open people are here.
I don't know much about the steaks here as I am vegetarian but I wouldn't let steak be a deal breaker. Food here, vegetarian and non-vegetarian, is one of the things I love about Portland. You might look up reviews about Ruth's Chris Steakhouse, Ringside Steakhouse, Jake's Grill, and Morton's. I'm sure there are others.
I am from the Bay Area and would personally never move to Sacramento. Its really hot there and its kind of far from everything. My childhood memories of driving through Sacramento always involves smelly cows.
I think people that are negative about Portland are maybe used to a bigger city like NY and try to compare it, can't stand the weather, or are disgruntled about the job market. The job market really does suck right now.
That said, we live in Burlingame in SW Portland which is very close to OHSU, Lewis & Clark, downtown, Sellwood and Lake Oswego and are probably going to rent our house out this summer. Its a mid-century 3bd/2ba if you're interested. Good luck
Thanks to everyone for the advice. it sounds like I should pull the trigger as portland sounds like the type of place I want to be. As far as OSHU goes, we would both be in a need area not associated with a hiring freeze. As far as housing, every one seems to focus on Condos, but I was hoping for a house. What could I do in the ~500K range? I want someplace that is easily commutable to OSHU and downtown, not necessarily next to it. i suppose I could drive if I had to . Anyway, thanks to everyone for the help. It's amazing how positive people when the person is not saying "Portland seems cool, I am moving up next week, but have no job." I am amazed that people do this.
Also, I appreciate the steak reccs. i mentioned the vegetarian vs steak thing partially tongue in cheek.
Oh yeah, for 500k you can find something...even in posh, not necessarily uber rich, areas pretty easily like Irvengton North of Broadway a bit (the 8 goes right up there, and it can be a quick walk). It depends where you want to go really, I would say rent for a bit and check it all out before pulling the trigger...just walk around where the buses take you with a camera and a notepad.
For 500k right now, you can get a very sweet house pretty much wherever you want to be. It would be smart to rent first though and get a feel for the neighborhoods. If you look up RMLS.com™ Regional Multiple Listing Service - Home, you can key in your preferences and get a good idea of what you can buy for your money. I usually search by zip code (OHSU is 97201, downtown is 97205 and 97204, SW hills are 97219 and 97221, close-in SE is 97214 and 97202, NW is 97209 and 97210). Those are all neighborhoods close to downtown and OHSU.
My company is doing that too; laying off higher paid older employees and hiring cheaper, younger people to take their place. My co-worker who has been here 20 years just got the sack on Friday.
Yeah, we have the reverse due to the union...all the old office livestock that are hanging on to retirement are kept over the younger workers. Sometimes it's good, sometimes it's bad depending on the person...we have one person who if she was gone we would be completely lost, and if another left we would be dancing because she makes twice the work for everyone around her.
So thank you to everyone for the advice and guidance. From looking at my thread and others I have taken away a few things about Portland. Please correct me if I am wrong.
1)Portland is overrun with homeless people.
2)Portland is overrun with gangs.
3)Portland is overrun with pretentious "hipsters" (being from the Midwest via the South, I am not quite sure what one is).
4)No one can find a job, and for those that do, you will be horribly underpaid/unhappy.
5)The weather is bad despite the moderate temps almost all of the year.
6) No one is happy in Portland
7) Everyone is happy in Portland and shut up if you say otherwise.
I'm not trying to be sarcastic, I am just basing this on the proportion of posts on this forum which cover these topics. If I was from another country and only read these forums, I would think that Portland is a horrible place to live. Take what I say with a grain of salt as I have only visited once in the past, but this forum has made me wonder why on earth anyone moves there.
When I visited Portland it seemed like a fun medium sized city of 2 million people. NO city of that size do not have some problems with homeless. NO city of that size has no problems with gangs. Even places half the size of Portland have these problems. I guess I am trying to say that by my brief observation and by most accounts outside of this forum, you have a beautiful, vibrant city. It's not a utopia, and it has some of the problems that are the price of having a beautiful, vibrant city. Why spend all this time harping on the bad and making everyone think this is the West Coast's version of Detroit (no offense to Detroit).
I have just been floored at all the negativity. It made me start rethinking the move, but then I realized that making my decisions based on a anonymous internet forum would be insane.
I am not saying that people do not have the right to say what they believe. But everyone has an agenda, and I have to wonder why it is so many people's agenda (on this forum) to make where they live look so bad. And why the people on both sides of the issue are so vehement about it.
Anyway, that is my two cents. I'd be interested to hear some responses.
Last edited by JLR29; 05-18-2009 at 10:01 AM..
JLR29, I think it's just the nature of an online forum such as this; people can post here anonymously and grind their respective axes. Maybe they've had a bad day, maybe they're tired of "new" people moving in, maybe negativity is part of their nature. I'm not discounting the fact that some, I'm sure, do have legitimate complaints, but what bothers them may not bother you, or me, at all.
In the past few years, when considering moving elsewhere, I've read several posts from various boards, and the complaining attitude is always the same. Take a look at the forum for my area, Tampa Bay, and you will see all manner of posts describing why Tampa is a "terrible" place to live.
Few places are truly terrible; every place has its good and bad points. It all comes down to where you feel most at home, and you're the only one who can determine that. So while I think it's valuable to gather opinions, I agree that it would indeed be "insane" to make a decision based on the ones you see here, or anywhere.
For a final analogy, for a woman having a baby, other women are very quick to tell her what a terrible time she will have delivering, horror stories of their own pregnancies, the bad things they've heard about her doctor, often leaving the poor woman in tears. This is just what people do. It's easier to be negative than positive. Go with your own research and impressions, and look for the good, because I'm sure you'll find it.
Put on your 'internet noise filter'; life in Portland is 'acceptable to good' and you can direct your own enjoyment / experience, and avoid the riff-raff.
It is quite acceptable to be content and safe while living day-to-day. It is not 'ghetto' and has some extraordinarily nice areas and people, and plenty to do to fill your varied tastes.
For housing I would look to Eastmoreland / west Woodstock, as it is one of my favorite spots. I'm sure there are equally nice areas that are closer to OHSU. You might figure out the most reasonable commute and look around that zone. Minimal commute can be good to give more time to family. Maybe there are some EZ access points from SW area that would be desirable, and keep you off the beaten path up the front side. You will find some very nice places (homes) under $500k. Try to buy something that is ez to market, should you ever have to leave. (view, nice lot, good location, next to park, classy / charm)
Nothing is ever perfect, and it's all opinion and experience of each poster...everyone will be different. It's not like people conduct research studies, people have lives to live and jobs to do since no one gets paid to do this all day...you get the advice and knowledge you pay for. If you want better ideas how you will see it, pay for the ticket and stay for a week. Things you don't see where you came from and you see after you move will seem worse then they are, things you saw more and don't see after moving will have gotten that much better.
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