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My husband and I are thinking about relocating to Spokane from Portland, OR because the housing costs seem to be so much more affordable there! Portland's housing costs are out of sight right now!! We do not have children, so schools would not be of a concern. I have heard that crime is high in Spokane. Is this true? Is it a pretty city? What do you like about Spokane and what don't you like?
From reading other threads on here people seem to like Aberdeen and Olympia and the surrounding communities better than Spokane. Are jobs and housing costs better there? My husband would need a job in the Human Resources field, HR and myself in the Care field.
Any information you can provide us would be much appreciated and helpful!! We are both in our early 40's and enjoy a quiet life but also like to get out and enjoy a night out, too!
I moved from Vancouver WA, to Spokane over a year ago. Here are my pros and cons regarding Spokane vs. Portland.
1) Spokane is affordable housing wise. Moreover, there are a lot of affordable older homes that have character,
2) LESS traffic. I used to work in Portland and had to cross the 1-205 bridge during rush hour,
3) The country is close. Within 15 minuts, a person can be out in the country among rolling hills,
4) SNOW!!! I love snow so this is a personal perference.
1) Some of Spokane still has a "red neck" or "white trash" feel to it,
2) Crime in certain areas is bad. For example, an intelligent individual is far from downtown when the bars close down at night,
3) Division! Division is a road that roads north and south in the center of Spokane. Because of all the traffic lights, traveling on division during rush hour can be brutal,
4) Low diversity.
Dispelling common myths
1) Contrary to popular belief, Spokane is not the neo-natzi capital of Washington.
2) Spokane is not crime infested. Only SOME areas are bad.
3) Spokane is not the Meth Capital of Washington. Meth is a problem everywhere.
My husband and I actually ventured up to Spokane this past weekend and pretty much EVERYTHING you mentioned here we agree with you 100%!!!
I think every city to some degree or another has things that are not appealing! Crime, disrepair, traffic, noise, etc....but we really saw the nice things that I think we could love about Spokane, also. And mainly that housing is still affordable! And it really did seem to have a quiet calm about it. We loved the riverfront area and that so many lakes and rivers are close by. Coeur de laine looks AWESOME! And we do enjoy the 4 seasons, so I think we are going to go for it!!
Thanks Again! ***Now the biggest obstacle ahead for us is to find jobs! *sigh* This will be tough! But we are still going to try!
Hi - I moved to Spokane in 1998 from Orlando FL and can tell you that I much prefer life in the NW to any other area. There is so much to do here that doesn't cost very much (compared to expensive theme parks & attractions) lots of outdoor activities, along with great culture, restaurants & night life. If you came to visit recently, hopefully you walked around downtown and saw all the great shops, hotels and restaurants. Riverfront Park is wonderful and they have concerts and other types of activities planned there pretty much year round. You should keep an eye on the Spokesman Review website classifeds to see what kind of jobs are available to you and your husband. Homes here are still affordable (although prices have gone up in the past 2 years, just like everywhere). You can visit my website to look through some of the available homes for sale - just to give you an idea of what you can get for the $$. Hope this helps!
We lived in Spokane for a couple of years and found a couple areas that we really enjoyed. Liberty Lake is just east of Spokane and is a very nice, new community. Also, about 1 or 2 further east is Post Falls, ID. It is very easy going and housing prices are great. We really liked the area and it is very close to Spokane, commuting was not a problem. We lived on the very west side of Post Falls and my husband worked in the Spokane Valley,it took him about 15minutes to drive. If you do like the area and work in Spokane there are some wierd tax things so talk to HR block first. Hope that helps!
Hoping to finally get an answer here to exactly which areas are meant when referring to red-neck and white-trash-feeling areas of Spokane. Not a trick question, either. I just don't want to waste time getting interested in perhaps a certain piece of property around Spokane and then find out I made a terrible mistake when I arrive there to see it in person. Thanks
Normally, I don't like people moving in... housing prices are sky rocketing around here because of all the people who found out how cheap prices are in this area. My father bought this home in 90 for 32,000, it was now appraised at 200,000.
Post Falls has really in expensive housing... its only 30 minutes from Spokane... very little crime.
You would be cool to come here though because your from portland and those people are cool, i have a problem with the number of californians comming here just because they are selling their 3million dollar homes and buying our 200,000 homes and killing all of our beautiful farm land.
As a Californian, I can REALLY understand and sympathize with your view that outsiders are taking over some of the best parts of your community. I love the rural areas and it saddens me to see it swallowed up by development.
Unfortunately, we in Cali have been dealing with that same dynamic for decades as hordes of both legal and illegal Latin Americans and Asians have truly changed California into something far different than most of us remember. While there may be many new and exciting restaurant choices and other positives with the influx, many of us are still feeling pushed out of our beloved Golden State as the quality of life rapidly deteriorates due to an exploding population, nightmare traffic conditions, property prices soaring to stratospheric heights, dramatically deteriorating schools and crime risk an everyday reality.
Global overpopulation is an undeniable fact of life and the resulting changes are driving immigration from all around the globe, through Cali and on into the less populated and more affordable areas of America (including yours). Without a national will to curb illegal immigration, it's actually more like an unstoppable tidal wave.
But you might consider looking at the bright side and realize that the people selling the $3 million dollar homes and moving to your town are most likely coming from a higher socio-economic strata than what they are fleeing (in terms of education, capital to invest in their new community, cultural awareness and willingness/ability to positively impact their new area).
It really could be FAR worse for you (and much closer to the average Californian experience) if you were getting the less desirable aspects of immigration. Consider what it might be like to have unbridled population growth resulting in a replication of the barrios of L.A., legendary traffic snarls, State mandated documents printed in dozens of non-English languages, exponential increases in welfare spending that would make your head spin, gangs and violent crime on a scale that you've never imagined.... I could go on and on but I think you see where I'm coming from.
Population increases always bring challenges. But the bottom line is that most California refugees are NOT carpetbaggers. They are predominantly families and retirees who simply want a better life for themselves and their children and want to CONTRIBUTE something positive to their new communities. Because of our rich and varied experiences, there are opportunities to help our new neighbors combat the problems of poor planning with regard to growth/sprawl, transportation infrastructure issues and much, much more. We're not looking to recreate the same problems that we are fleeing (though that can invariably happen at times with rapid influx). Some of us will bring new businesses and jobs, gentrify and upgrade properties, open interesting new restaurants, bring fresh viewpoints and ideas that just MIGHT add to your culture and quality of life.
For the couple considering a move from Portland (if you're still thinking about it), my sense from several visits to Spokane was that a fair percentage of the upgrades happening in the downtown area are either inspired or directly financed by people from Portland, Seattle and California. The changes seem very positive as capital gradually flows in, though property crime and a "poverty consciousness" seems to pervade the area (relative to much of America). Spokane is truly a beautiful area in terms of easy access to lakes, forests and the great outdoors. I wish you the best in your decision...
I am new to Spokane, March this year. I have lived throughout Oregon on the West side and in Western Montana. I prefer both those places to Spokane. My experience has been the worst in my life but not everyone is going to go through that. Mostly what seems to be the difficulty here is that many people in Spokane are from Spokane. My ex has encountered a fair amount of people, when applying for work, who think his being from Illinois and living here is weird. He comments on being stared at a lot, he has a couple tattoos on his arms but is generally a normal looking person. The people are incredibly friendly yet there seems to be an air of judgmental nature here. It's known for being VERY conservative. Not much diversity. It is a "know someone to get anywhere" kind of town from what we have heard and experienced. Large city with small town attitude. Not a lot of immigrants from other states like Oregon and Western Montana are.
Spokane has a ton of beautiful city parks. There are a lot of restaurants and all kinds of shopping. The south hills have beautiful older homes but some can be spendy. If you want to avoid the negative cultural aspects of the area avoid living where I am at, Northeast Spokane. We have a nice little neighborhood but live adjacent to the Hillyard area which is known for high poverty rates and a generally lower-class lifestyle. This area has some of the higher child abuse and neglect cases.
I am soured enough on this area that I would head to Portland in a heartbeat, though I know it is pretty well unaffordable. For me actually, I need to be in Coeur d'Alene or some other more rural area.
I like the weather here. It isn't a completely ugly town and there seems to be a lot to do. Very few illegals seem to live here so we don't have that problem. We have more of a "white trash" problem. Everywhere I have lived in Oregon and Montana claimed to be the meth capital. It is everywhere.
I just wish I had known what I know now about this place so I wouldn't have wasted time and money leaving Montana. So, take what you like and leave the rest. As a single mother of four boys, this doesn't strike me as somewhere I want to raise them.
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