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Old 04-16-2007, 01:22 AM
 
Location: Steilacoom, WA by way of East Tennessee
1,044 posts, read 3,527,309 times
Reputation: 692

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Hello all,

It is I, one of the thousands of intrepid wanna be TN state volunteers trying to make the transistion from Wanna be to actual TN state resident

I'm retired military......aka......currently unemployed We've been wanting to make this move for a while, we've sold our home and are living in our lifeboat (RV). We are currently located in WA state, we live near a military base with a hospital, commissary and exchange (dept store). The biggest thing we use is the military health care system. Now that the big day for moving is close at hand, we are starting to face some realities of finance and are starting to get a little worried about the future job prospects.

I've been applying for jobs online like there is no tomorrow and finally some job prospects are coming my way, unfortunately none thus far for TN.

So here are my options so far, anyone have any ideas or suggestions? I've been mainly applying for government jobs as that's what I know and they seem to have the best pay benefits, plus some of them are easy to apply for long distance.

Dept Navy: Job offer in WA state start $16 hr, after 6 months $18.50
Interviewed awaiting for news on job offer for GA Navy job starting out at approx $18hr

County Jailer in Asheville, NC, I know some people, should be able to get me on, starting pay should be just over $16 hr, then just over $17 after 6 months.

Norfolk Southern Railroad, final interview process next week, if accepted I'll be assigned where they need me, I asked for Knoxville, but it could be anywhere. Pay is good, starting out $51,000 annually plus 10% bonus.

So my question is this, most of these jobs pay pretty well, but as you can see they ain't in TN, should I take one of these jobs if offered. So far one is a definite offer, the others are 90-95% chance of getting an offer.

Should I just bite the bullet and move to TN without a job and hope for the best, but hope doesn't butter the bread, nor feed the family.

What I'm thinking is best is to take one of the following options:

1. Take the local Govt job, work for 1 year and then try to transfer to a closer govt job either in TN/NC/SC.

2. Take the GA job if offered, as it is closer and I can weekend it in TN looking for work, etc. I can't do this from WA state, where I'm currently located.

3. Take the Asheville job if offered, it's county and close to TN and I could in theory commute from TN, but that's not likely. At least I'm only an hour away from Johnson city and I could search for housing and jobs from Asheville.

4. Take the Train manager job (hopefully in TN) a) it's high pay with high potential for moving up the ladder. b) Even if I don't get TN at first I can hope to transfer to TN later and still have a good paying job.

5. Last option is to move to TN, live in my travel trailer (where I'm living now) and hope for the best and try to find something locally.

What are your educated guesses/opinions on the best for me and the family.

I'm 40 yo, wife's 48, eldest child 18 yo refuses to move to TN and has moved out of the house, youngest is 14, he's going no matter if he likes it or not.

We are debt free currently with savings in the bank, wife works for the local grocery for $17.50 hour, she'll make half that (maybe) in TN. Lots to consider, cost of living, wages, lifestyle, etc.

Thanks

Tony

p.s. I've been told in the past not to move to TN without a job lined up, hence my seeking employment where I can find it.
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Old 04-16-2007, 07:08 AM
 
Location: Beautiful East TN!!
7,281 posts, read 18,713,277 times
Reputation: 2751
Hmmm..... Well this is just my thoughts. If you are in the RV and can stand that for a few months and not tied down by a job at the moment why not travel to the east and stay a few weeks in each state/area that you are looking at for both jobs and want to live and apply for jobs in each area while you are there? Worse thing that could happen is that you have taken a family vacation in the RV and end up going back to WA at the end of it all. But I thought you wanted out of WA?
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Old 04-16-2007, 09:19 AM
 
Location: Steilacoom, WA by way of East Tennessee
1,044 posts, read 3,527,309 times
Reputation: 692
MB,

Thanks for the reply, BTW, as you can tell the house Finally closed. I think it was a total of 3 1/2 months to close that thing, geez.....

As to leaving WA, the reason we haven't hooked up the truck and started driving yet is that the son doesn't get out of school until mid June. Meanwhile I've been putting in job applications everywhere and doing some living expense math. And discovering that $10 per hour is not going to cut it, especially since it will not only be me getting my wages chopped, but also the wife. I know that living expenses should be less in TN, but they can't be much less than I have right now living in an RV

I have a bird in the hand situation right now, I have a job offer with good pay, but I want to leave, yet I need to get some cash flow coming in. I'll be in the area this week, if I get a chance I'll try to pop in and say hello (if you don't mind)

Anyway, I've got some thinking to do on this.

Thanks

Tony
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Old 04-16-2007, 11:43 AM
 
2,060 posts, read 5,007,782 times
Reputation: 1427
well, in my opinion, the first thing you might want to consider is how much you got from selling your home in WA. If you got anything close to the bubble level price for it, then you should already be sitting on a princely sum that will enable you to buy a modest home with a modest yard in a modest neighborhood in TN,NC,GA... basically the Southeast. Honestly, as someone born and raised in TN, I'd say as far as climate, culture, environment, and so on, NC, GA, TN, and parts of AL are very similar. I imagine your main motive behind moving from WA was strictly price and a lower cost of living. So if that be the case, I would accept the jobs from the Southeastern states. Forget the WA job as you'll not be taking advantage of a cost savings scenario at all. Asheville is actually very nice. If you can buy a home there and have little to pay for, then even a minimal income of say 30-40k a year would mean you'd probably be able to save almost everything you make. That's my 2-cents.
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Old 04-16-2007, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Steilacoom, WA by way of East Tennessee
1,044 posts, read 3,527,309 times
Reputation: 692
Quote:
Originally Posted by sliverbox View Post
well, in my opinion, the first thing you might want to consider is how much you got from selling your home in WA. If you got anything close to the bubble level price for it, then you should already be sitting on a princely sum that will enable you to buy a modest home with a modest yard in a modest neighborhood in TN,NC,GA... basically the Southeast. Honestly, as someone born and raised in TN, I'd say as far as climate, culture, environment, and so on, NC, GA, TN, and parts of AL are very similar. I imagine your main motive behind moving from WA was strictly price and a lower cost of living. So if that be the case, I would accept the jobs from the Southeastern states. Forget the WA job as you'll not be taking advantage of a cost savings scenario at all. Asheville is actually very nice. If you can buy a home there and have little to pay for, then even a minimal income of say 30-40k a year would mean you'd probably be able to save almost everything you make. That's my 2-cents.
Silverbox,

Thanks, I was hoping that you would stop by, you have the TN and West coast outlook both that I dearly appreciate.

I had several homes that I sold, lost money on a few and made money on a couple, I bought most them in 2005 (bubble top) and sold in 2006/07 sliding prices (fast).

I have no debt, I have one piece of land, that when/if it sells I'll have enough cash to purchase a modest home in TN/NC. The Asheville area is almost as bad as here for pricing, but not quite this bad (WA).

The local govt job won't go as far as bang for the buck, but it is a job in hand, the others are thus far....definite maybe's

I'm thinking that the SE jobs would be better (if I get firm offer), you are correct the biggest draw is the cheaper cost of living and being closer to family, although that draw has some drawbacks

One consideration is the $20k I make in retirement, add that to the $32k SE jobs and I'd be making $52k, that's not terrible, especially if I can pay for a modest home in cash. TN would be much easier to pay for cash, but harder to make even $32k a year.

I know I asked before, but you aren't moving back to TN, do you think that I'd be making a mistake to move mainly due to lower costs of living? I'm hoping that I like living down south again, it's been a long time for me on the West Coast and I'm used to the way things work out here, I'm not sure if I'm friendly enough for the south anymore....

Tony
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Old 04-16-2007, 12:37 PM
 
2,060 posts, read 5,007,782 times
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hmmm... Well those are some difficult questions and ones that I don't exactly want to answer as fact, but more as personal opinion. I can only make a opinion based on what I would do if I was considering a move to the Southeast which isn't something I have in my forecast at the moment.

Even though I am from TN and love the culture/landscape/music/food, I have to admit that the single best attribute for now is the cost difference between the west and east coasts and TN. The same can be said for most of the Southeast. The cost of living ratio is roughly 4:1, meaning it is around 4 times cheaper to live in the Southeast region at this time.

If I were also making this decision, I would only do it if I had enough money saved up to buy a home in it's entirety along with savings leftover. Realistically speaking, a home these days of average means in a metro area in TN is going to be anywhere from 75-150k. So project that price around the middle. My opinion to buy the whole thing is only due to the incredible advantage of not having a mortgage, especially at retirement age would mean that you would be eliminating one of the biggest financially risky purchases in life and essentially be making money hand over fist. Even if your salary were lower, you could count most of the income to be in the form of direct savings.I think you are smart to think that you should get a job first, then move.

Secondly, I would be checking out other cities in the region that are growing and have real potential. This too can be a cautious thing because one could say that Raleigh/Durham is the best place to move to in the region, but if you read their site, it would seem that the majority of the people moving in are from NJ,NY,MA... basically other bubble zones and just cashed out their houses and are moving there site unseen merely for the houses and not the jobs. So I would be cautious of a new area like Raleigh where so many are moving in and not really thinking ahead or making the local economy and job market their primary concern. An area that gets filled with non-contributing residents cannot possibly function on a healthy level forever. I don't see this kind of activity happening in TN, but I wouldn't be surprised if it does soon since Raleigh keeps getting flooded and essentially being turned into NJ Part 2. yuck. That and EVERY SINGLE publication keeps carrying on about how great it is there. To me, this is just a big sales pitch and it is working almost too well.

So from my perspective, I would make this choice based on: Financial positioning into a stable situation, A healthy job market that has balance and not one based entirely on housing and relo's from the East Coast. Everyone's situation will be different and whatever is deemed acceptable is everyone's idea. So my opinion is probably really different. Anyhow, let us know how you fare.
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Old 04-16-2007, 05:12 PM
 
Location: Steilacoom, WA by way of East Tennessee
1,044 posts, read 3,527,309 times
Reputation: 692
Thanks Silver,

I have a few job interviews set up, Operations manager for the train company and with the head of the jail, as a county jailer.......not a great job, but it'll pay the bills.

I'm going to try and apply at the VA in Johnson City, but I don't have any leads in TN for employment, not real promising there, so far. I'm hoping that I'm just not looking in the correct places.

I'll post next week on how things go this week.

Tony
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