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Old 11-19-2011, 08:25 PM
 
77 posts, read 140,109 times
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So what's the dirt on Bozeman, Montana? From what city-data says, unemployment is low, population is around 40,000, average age is around 25 years young, average home earnings is around $35,000.

What is the likelihood of a 27 year old, single, white, male making a comfy living there? My job history is working at a golf course for a bit, then working as a mechanic for around 10 years. I would like nothing more than to never touch a wrench ever again if I can get away with it.

What are jobs like in Bozeman? Cost of living compared to say...San Diego California? Would I be the only non-religious person living there? I hear the mosquitoes in Montana are large enough to carry away small moose and deer.

Any info would be great! Thanks!
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Old 11-19-2011, 11:02 PM
 
Location: C-U metro
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Default Dirt?

The only thing you'll be able to afford to eat is dirt or ramen noodles on 35k. Bozeman, until Williston and Dickinson in ND passed it, had the highest cost of living between Seattle and Minneapolis. It is over run with rich people from CA and they aren't interested in people making a living there. They do a good job at driving out jobs that pay over 10/hr that aren't in the service industry. Your compatriots from CA living in Missoula have decided to get in the game and kill the industry in that town too. Most contractors in Bozeman now work in the oil patch in ND due to the utter lack of an economy in Bozeman outside of MSU.

Considering you are from CA and in the landscaping business, you'll probably like it. Just don't expect us Montanans to welcome you with open arms.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:46 AM
 
Location: North Dakota
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I have to second flyincat's response. I went to college in Bozeman and had a very tough time making it. My brother recently moved out of there for the same reason. If you want to live in Montana I would suggest Billings. I think it's a bit cheaper. I haven't lived there so maybe some Billings residents can give you more info.
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Old 11-20-2011, 11:55 AM
 
Location: Bozeman, Montana
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JesseQ, I've lived in Bozeman since 1970 and was born and raised in Montana.
IN GENERAL right now unless you are a doctor, dentist, lawyer, research scientist, or high tech programmer, or have an advanced degree in something, I would not say you could make a "comfy" living in Bozeman.

As you want something different than being a mechanic, you could check out the Gibson Acoustic Guitar factory in Bozeman which is hiring lacquer technicians.

I've watched Bozeman change over the 40plus years I've lived here, and I'm a positive person, so I see it as a glass half full rather than half empty evolution to the town. You can be from anywhere in the world and find people who are friendly to you in Bozeman. If you look, you can find people who are unfriendly, too. A lot depends on your attitude.

Because a ski resort was built nearby in the 1970's at Big Sky, the town became expensive as far as housing and brought in a lot of wealthy people who bought vacation homes. That has changed somewhat in the economic downturn, but for awhile, people could work on construction and in real estate or building related businesses here and make a good living when building was booming.

I still love Bozeman, because of its location, because I have friends here, because of the way it preserved its historic downtown (my hometown of Helena tore down most of its old downtown), because I have life history here, even though it has changed over the years and currently the job market is more challenging.

Here are some links for job and relocation info:
http://jobs.mt.gov
Bozeman Daily Chronicle Classifieds
https://www.bozeman.net/Home

Hope that helps.

H.I.
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:28 PM
 
77 posts, read 140,109 times
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Thanks Happiness Is!

The rest of your are downers Even if you are right
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Old 11-20-2011, 04:59 PM
 
Location: Back at home in western Washington!
1,490 posts, read 4,278,786 times
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Downers? Thought you were looking for realistic answers... should have asked for everyone to put a an un-true happy spin on their answers .

"So what's the dirt on Bozeman, Montana? From what city-data says, unemployment is low, population is around 40,000, average age is around 25 years young, average home earnings is around $35,000."

3 out of the 4 things stated above are directly related to the fact that Bozo is a college town. The population, average age and average income are all influenced by the university. If you are coming here to attend college - you'll do really well. If you are coming here to live (and your skills are mechanic or golf course worker), you are going to struggle.
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Old 11-21-2011, 09:12 AM
 
Location: western montana
214 posts, read 552,987 times
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flyingcat, that's an interesting comment and prediction. I'm not up on Bozeman but I have an interesting observation I'd like to share.

I go to Seeley Lake once in a great while and I was there a couple of weeks ago looking at a few used snowmobiles for sale, and the town looked exceptionally dead, I mean no people around for a saturday afternoon. A ghost town. This is the same town that was going gangbusters just a few years ago.

I stopped off at the snowmobile shop and talked to the owner and he looked a little bit in the dumps to me. We talked about sleds for sale. Then out of the blue he mentioned, had I noticed how dead the town looked? I said yes. He said, our experiment with making Seeley Lake a tourist town failed. He said, most of the people are either working in the oil patch in ND or walked away from their property and went back to Cal., or wherever.

I did notice a lot of property up for sale.
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Old 11-21-2011, 11:24 AM
 
Location: Where the mountains touch the sky
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I was raised in Bozeman, but moved out when the prices and employment opportunities went south.

It used to be a great town, kind of a cow town with a college, but then it morphed into Aspen North, or as more commonly called, "BozAngeles", and they yuppie hordes came in. It was like watching a beloved family member die of cancer watching the housing developments eat the valley. The Mcmansions on every creek and hill, the stamped out chain stores taking the place of hometown businesses like Quality Wholesale. The locked down land and forest access, the destruction of the old families that had to sell out and move because they couldn't afford the new higher proper taxes and costs of living.
I couldn't stand it anymore and left.

I still have a lot of friends there, most are just barely scraping by with the housing bubble bust. Without construction, there is no other real big buisness to support the number of people living there.
There is the college and the hospital, the ski runs and hiking guides do a lot of business during tourist seasons, but day to day, living wage employment for someone without special skills is hard to find. A mechanic could find a job, but golf course groundskeepers would only be able to work 4 or 5 months out of the year.

Yes there are a lot of young women there, yes the mountains and wild areas are beautiful, (somewhat crowded these days, but still nice).
The atmosphere has changed from what it was to just another resort town to my way of thinking.

It was a personal tragidy for me as I loved it there, but I couldn't afford to live there anymore, and couldn't stand what was happening to the places I had loved all my life.
Last night was the first time in 10 years I had driven down main street Bozeman, I didn't recognize it. With the exception of the rearing Stallion over what used to be a western wear store, I could have been driving down any street in San Diego except for the snow berm in the center of the street.

All the places look the same, same style, same boutique businesses, same yuppie bars and coffee houses.

It will probably be another 10 years before I take that drive again, if ever.
Too heartbreaking
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Old 11-21-2011, 11:39 AM
 
Location: Brendansport, Sagitta IV
7,819 posts, read 13,424,683 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jbechtel View Post
Then out of the blue he mentioned, had I noticed how dead the town looked? I said yes. He said, our experiment with making Seeley Lake a tourist town failed. He said, most of the people are either working in the oil patch in ND or walked away from their property and went back to Cal., or wherever.
That's the problem with relying on the tourism industry -- you're relying on other people having surplus money.
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Old 11-21-2011, 06:25 PM
 
Location: North Dakota
8,612 posts, read 10,471,843 times
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My family moved to Livingston in '91 so our shopping was done in Bozeman. It is amazing to see how Bozeman has changed from 1991 to 2007 when I moved out of the area. Silvertip, what is in the store with the bucking stallion now? I had thought Powder Horn Sporting Goods was still in business.
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