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Old 09-01-2007, 04:22 PM
 
495 posts, read 1,278,190 times
Reputation: 194

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Quote:
Originally Posted by friendlyflyer View Post
I think I can add some testimony to what attracts one to SF, and why some stay despite the extreme high cost of living.

I'm in my 40's and grew up in NJ near Philly. Went to college in Arizona, and have worked for a major airline for 22yrs. I moved to SF on a transfer in 1990 and spent 14yrs here. I was 30yrs when I landed here and thought it was the best place in the USA I've been too for a big city next to NYC. There was everything I could imagine in a City and then some. What happen was it grew on me and influenced my outlook on life, and I'm not an extreme liberal!
Very hard to explain how, but the way in which I live my life, career oriented, mountain biker, rower, skier, fitness buff, arts, food, wine, you name it. Did I say wine...there are great wines here that don't get shipped outside of the Bay Area. Everything I wanted was just down the street or around the corner or max drive of 5hrs to Tahoe.
Also, the other half of my family relocated here in the 80's.

I'm sure just as someone who grew up in NYC or has lived there for an extended time, thinks its the best place on earth, the same thing happens to many Bay Area or people who live in "The City" as locals call it.

I moved away for work reasons 2 1/2 yrs ago to LA/Hollywood. Ok, living in LA is another story so I will save that for another time.
I'm just relocated back to SF the past few weeks for work again.

Here's what I realized, yes SF is an incredible world class city and the many offerings of the Bay Area. Is it worth the price? I say "not". It really depends where you are the economic scale, and your outlook on life regarding the cost of living in a place vs the quality of life.

Most of the people I know in the Bay Area, grew up here, and either they have family here or this is what they consider home{lifestyle) and nothing can compare. Many others came here prior to the tech boom, the internet boom and got into the market making a good salary, bought early and paid 200-400K for a home a now its worth 700-1Million, they "rode the wave" and got in at the right time. Some others made a fortune in the tech/internet boom and can afford what they want. The next group are the "call them what you want" either cannot afford to own, or save years to own a modest 1950's (1400 sq ft) house, or just pay high rent, because they just want to live here.

Personally at this point, financial security is more important to me, then the so called "quality of life" issue. I know friends who are still living back in the Philly/NJ area who have a wonderful quality of life. Ok, they dont have the Golden Gate Bridge in their back yard, but many US cities today offering a great quality of life, good or bad weather aside.

If I could wave the wand right now, I would move to San Diego. Basically I made long lasting friends there, and I just like the vibe there. It mixes a bit of the Bay Area with So Cal lifestyle. Also I wouldn't hestitate to move back East for the right reasons.

So I'm glad to be back and in ways it is like coming home, excluding any family or friends. However I don't think this will be long term.

So in summary, if your a young person and have this incredible itching to live in SF, then come and experience it. However in this day and age, only the rich will be able to sustain in this market as a new entrant, similar to NYC(Manhattan) If your lucky enough to make 150K it will go alot farther in many other cities and if your making way less than that and you want a nice middle class lifestyle, then maybe SF will be a vacation destination. Don't worry your not going to be missing out on anything anymore than happy folks in many wonderful US cities.

I will add one caveat that I failed to mention. If you are a soul in seek of trying to figure out who and where you are going in your life, this is one City in the world that you'll hopefully figure it out.

Friendlyflyer I couldn't have said it better! You took the words right out of my mouth. By the way, I was born in Camden, grew up in south jersey and san francisco. Then zig zagged around the country and europe. I think you're right on with your comments and observations about what draws people to SF and sustains them, with their apparent disregard for the high cost of living. After living in SF for roughly 25 years I'm moving to another city for these vary reasons. It's still a beautiful city and I have friends to visit, but I'm no longer willing to pay as much in housing costs. It used to not matter to me, but now it does and so you just have to listen to 'that voice' when it's talking to you. I can live just as well and continue my active lifestyle elsewhere. I'm moving to a city where I have a good foundation of friends and family so it won't be cold, nonetheless I know I'm still in for a bit of culture shock but at least I don't have my rose colored glasses on. It will also be nice to have some extra cash in the bank vs. paying someone else's income profit driven mortgage! Take care.
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Old 09-01-2007, 08:23 PM
 
358 posts, read 1,428,046 times
Reputation: 163
Quote:
Originally Posted by friendlyflyer View Post
So in summary, if your a young person and have this incredible itching to live in SF, then come and experience it. However in this day and age, only the rich will be able to sustain in this market as a new entrant, similar to NYC(Manhattan) If your lucky enough to make 150K it will go alot farther in many other cities and if your making way less than that and you want a nice middle class lifestyle, then maybe SF will be a vacation destination. Don't worry your not going to be missing out on anything anymore than happy folks in many wonderful US cities.
Only the rich will sustain? What do you base that on? Most people in SF are not rich. I really don't understand this 'cost of living' issue... besides the fact that cost of living can be a problem for materialistic people.
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Old 09-01-2007, 08:41 PM
 
5,062 posts, read 5,912,471 times
Reputation: 3231
Default natural scenery is important

I have been to San Francisco only once, just this past April.

Amazing!!

While S.F. may seem rediculously overpriced, my personal opinion, it does make sense that is more expensive than Chicago (the area I'm from and live now).

I guess it depends on what your thing is. For a metropolitan area almost as big as Chicagoland. San Fran-Oakland-San Jose bay area is 7 million, compared to a little over 9 million of Chicagoland, to be as close as one is to so much outstanding nature (all of Marin county!!), to me it makes sense why some people might think its worth it.

Chicago is great if your a huge sports fan, a fan of eating out, and of tall buildings.

But it you're more into the outdoors and natural sciences, you have to travel a lot further to get to some great state parks and forest preserves, and a lake that I suppose feels like an ocean, but simpy does not have the biodiversity.

In this respect the Bay area truly has it all. I love what Chicago does have nearby: Indiana Dunes, the Illlinois River Valley, and even areas in McHenry county, and the Palos/Sag Valley areas. But for an earth science instructor like myself, I can't think of another major metro area, that has so much to do and see as far as nature goes, that close to that well known of a city like San Francisco.
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Old 09-01-2007, 09:07 PM
 
Location: Bay Area, CA
24,832 posts, read 28,857,456 times
Reputation: 11746
Quote:
Originally Posted by Milliano View Post
Only the rich will sustain? What do you base that on? Most people in SF are not rich. I really don't understand this 'cost of living' issue... besides the fact that cost of living can be a problem for materialistic people.
Amen! I love how people think only the rich can live here, when it's a metro area of millions (the whole Bay Area - SF alone is almost 1 Mil). If everyone here was wealthy, it would be a rather strange environment and economy. We have people of all classes & statuses here, ranging from the very poor to the very wealthy, and everything in-between... yes, our overall average income is higher, but that's mostly due to Silicon Valley. Anyway, most of my friends are very average money-wise, and they've all been surviving just fine!
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Old 09-02-2007, 01:58 PM
 
Location: Erie, PA
714 posts, read 1,302,835 times
Reputation: 177
It's just that some people want to do more than simply survive. Many people would rather not subject themselves to serfdom just because there is nice (although very brown/dead-looking) scenery.
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Old 09-02-2007, 02:02 PM
 
1,210 posts, read 171,096 times
Reputation: 540
Default Is S.F. Really Worth The Cost? C'mon -- Really?

I don't believe their is anything in California worth the cost....
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Old 09-02-2007, 02:44 PM
 
Location: the best coast
718 posts, read 1,907,804 times
Reputation: 201
Quote:
Originally Posted by junkman18 View Post
I don't believe their is anything in California worth the cost....
no ones asking you to buy anything
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Old 09-02-2007, 03:23 PM
 
358 posts, read 1,428,046 times
Reputation: 163
Quote:
Originally Posted by kpoeppel View Post
It's just that some people want to do more than simply survive. Many people would rather not subject themselves to serfdom just because there is nice (although very brown/dead-looking) scenery.
What do you mean by 'serfdom'? Or 'do more than simply survive'?
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Old 09-02-2007, 05:31 PM
 
Location: Houston, TX
832 posts, read 2,751,452 times
Reputation: 195
Quote:
Originally Posted by Milliano View Post
What do you mean by 'serfdom'? Or 'do more than simply survive'?
I view serfdom as always being a renter in SF. That was my situation until improved it significantly.
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Old 09-02-2007, 06:38 PM
 
358 posts, read 1,428,046 times
Reputation: 163
Quote:
Originally Posted by BearBranch View Post
I view serfdom as always being a renter in SF. That was my situation until improved it significantly.
Does that apply to renting in other parts of the country? I don't understand what is so terrible about renting... I'd love it if somebody could explain it to me. Around 100 million Americans rent. 1/3 of households are renting households in the USA. Are 1/3 of Americans serfs?
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