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Old 05-17-2013, 10:49 AM
 
Location: US
17,879 posts, read 17,721,406 times
Reputation: 13869

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Quote:
Originally Posted by neinei876 View Post
bmw335xi, thanks for the insight. I guess if the cost of living is low enough, a car with car insurance would be okay. I guess I really just don't want to deal with maintenance, dmv, and all that stuff, although it is convenient. I guess it all depends on how much I'll be making in the new job. Yes, I think you're spot on about the fresh air. It would be so much better than Fresno.
You're welcome

The amount of money you would save living outside of California would be far more than the expenses of a car. If you were to live in the outer parts of the Bay Area, you'd need a car anyways. You would have no problem finding a nice place to live for under $1,000 and you wouldn't have to live out in the boondocks such as Brentwood. Definitely consider Dallas, Houston, or Austin. I think Dallas or Houston might suit you better because they will have more job opportunities. Best of luck wherever you end up!
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:52 AM
 
43,012 posts, read 92,013,162 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by neinei876 View Post
sjnative, thanks for the advice. I totally forgot about child support. I don't know how much it'll be, but yes, I would be getting that as well (although I don't expect a lot as he doesn't make much).
Don't count on the child support in your budget though. My girlfriend got $1,000/month in child support. The reason we had to do a budget on her income was because he rarely paid child support. To make matters worse, he went back to court and got child support lowered to $76/month. If my girlfriend wasn't providing health insurance for the children, SHE would have had to pay HIM child support. Imagine having to pay child support on her pathetic salary. Now her paying him would have only happened because they now enjoy shared custody, but the $76/month was the calculation she would have gotten from him if she still had full custody. Guess what? He's still not paying that $76/month. Deadbeat dad laws don't put food on the table. When doing your budget, consider child support like the lottery. If you don't get paid, you don't miss it. If you get paid, it's your fun money.
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:12 AM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,139 posts, read 29,534,576 times
Reputation: 26599
Quote:
Originally Posted by thecooler View Post
Have you looked at salaries in the bay area? Your estimate seems really low. I have a couple of friends doing admin type work and they are both over 50k/year.
I have been seeing job listings in the 30-40k range for admin jobs. There are some places where you can get more, but your range is pretty accurate outside of a few specific industries.

Quote:
Originally Posted by neinei876 View Post
Jade408, I guess it all depends on where I live and where my job is, but I can see how tight it can get. I've been calculating over and over for myself :P
I'm also taking into account that rent will go up, daycare expenses will go down starting this August, no more car insurance and gas (as I will be selling it), transportation costs will go up (although I doubt more than what I pay for gas, insurance, maintenance, etc.), cell, internet, electricity, and utilites will be about the same, I can lower my student loans by going on a 20-30 yr. plan (I'm currenly on a 10-yr. plan), health insurance depends on the employers (my current employer pays 90%). Groceries is actually quite little for us, maybe $20/week but I usually throw in an extra $100 just for cushion, so $200 sounds about right.

I am focusing on jobs that will be able to cover all my expenses, but I am willing to take any job to make ends meet if it comes to that.
The places where rent is cheapest have the poorest options for public transit. It would be pretty difficult to live in Eastern Contra Costa County without a car. Pretend you live right next to BART, getting access to day to day errands without a car would be very difficult. Those areas are not walkable or transit friendly. You might find a bus, but it will be a commuter only one, or only run once per hour and end by 8pm. Limited weekend service if any.

And since the areas are not dense, walking to do your day to day errands would be impossible. Biking wouldn't work very well either. Those areas have recreational bikers, not people who use bikes as a primary form of transport. Car insurance would probably be more expensive than Fresno. Cheap rent/good schools/transit friendly do not go hand in hand in the Bay Area.

Lucky you that your employer pays 90%. I have only had that happen once in my career. For the past 7 or 8 years I am paying ~50%. And I haven't worked anywhere that pays for dependents. Other than my friends at Fortune 1000 companies, everyone is paying 30-50% of their insurance costs. I only know one person who works somewhere that pays for dependents.
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:34 AM
 
Location: Fresno, CA
88 posts, read 106,281 times
Reputation: 34
Hopes, I think my expenses and your girlfriend's are just different. I wouldn't have any car expenses, my internet and cell phone are $60/mo total, gas is either included in utilities (which doesn't go over $50/mo) or in electricity which is around $20-$50/mo. depending on the season.

I think you misunderstood me. I am not saying I will keep my daughter and myself in poverty just because I was in poverty growing up. I'm saying it's not impossible to live in the bay area as a single parent who isn't rich. I think there is a difference between living minimally and in poverty. I also don't believe I need to give my child more to be a better parent. I'm more concerned about her morals and education, being a good worldy citizen than buying her toys, brand name clothes, gadgets, etc. I guess it's just a different lifestyle.

I also understand that there is a ceiling for admin type jobs, as there are for most other jobs. I currently work in an admin job and those are where my skills are currently at and what I can get another job in. I'm not saying that I will forever be in an admin position living in the heart of SF city. I am looking to improve my skills, am looking into getting master's, but moving is my focus as of right now. I don't know where I will be 10 years from now, but living in or near a large city close to friends is what I need right now. I can always move again later if I need a change. Better happy than sick and miserable.
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:37 AM
 
Location: Fresno, CA
88 posts, read 106,281 times
Reputation: 34
sjnative, I'm guessing if I took other posters' advice and live in Walnut Creek, Concord, etc. that my daughter wouldn't be in the SF school district, correct?

Manzanita2012, not a bad suggestion. It's great to know it have so many community activities. How did you like your visit to Austin?

I'm guessing because Alameda is closer to SF city that it'd be more expensive.
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:43 AM
 
Location: Fresno, CA
88 posts, read 106,281 times
Reputation: 34
bmw335xi, thanks again. Btw, what's the weather like in those three cities?

Hopes, thanks for the heads up. Yeah, I hadn't considered child support this entire time. I'm only thinking if it was all on me.

Jade408, sorry about your insurance. Mine does currently pay for 1 child or family option if you have more. I guess it all depends on the employer, how many employees, etc. As for the car thing, I've heard about the same. I'd have to go visit these areas in person to really know what i'm getting myself into and see what is possible in terms of transportation.
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:50 AM
 
Location: US
17,879 posts, read 17,721,406 times
Reputation: 13869
Quote:
Originally Posted by neinei876 View Post
bmw335xi, thanks again. Btw, what's the weather like in those three cities?
Dallas: Average Weather for Dallas, TX - Temperature and Precipitation
Houston: Average Weather for Houston, TX - Temperature and Precipitation
Austin: Average Weather for Austin, TX - Temperature and Precipitation
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:50 AM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
27,139 posts, read 29,534,576 times
Reputation: 26599
Quote:
Originally Posted by neinei876 View Post
bmw335xi, thanks again. Btw, what's the weather like in those three cities?

Hopes, thanks for the heads up. Yeah, I hadn't considered child support this entire time. I'm only thinking if it was all on me.

Jade408, sorry about your insurance. Mine does currently pay for 1 child or family option if you have more. I guess it all depends on the employer, how many employees, etc. As for the car thing, I've heard about the same. I'd have to go visit these areas in person to really know what i'm getting myself into and see what is possible in terms of transportation.
Check out transit.511.org to plan trips and check schedules.

I have worked at mostly small companies and startups, and haven't found any that are paying for everything. You'll find this is a common thread. The employees tend to be younger and not have families, so those aren't the most critical benefits. Or they don't have enough people to get affordable insurance. There are lots of similar companies here in the Bay Area. Places like Fresno have a very different sort of job market and worker population.

I agree that Sacramento Area is a much better bet for you. There are also plenty of cheaper good suburbs in the area. You might need a car, but finding rent for $800 is very doable in the entire region.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:22 PM
 
Location: US
17,879 posts, read 17,721,406 times
Reputation: 13869
Sacramento is a good recommendation too. It will definitely be more doable than most cities in the East Bay. Roseville and Rocklin are nice areas, but it will require a car.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:37 PM
 
Location: Fresno, CA
88 posts, read 106,281 times
Reputation: 34
bmw335xi, thanks for the links

Jade408, it may just be the company and size of company, age of staff, etc. I currently work for a health plan so that may also why they cover well.

I never really thought of Sacramento. It'd be a good place to get my foot in government work if I wanted to, but it has never appealed to me. I know for sure I'd need a car there. Texas does look interesting though, so I'll check that out as well
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