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Old 06-25-2013, 01:50 AM
 
2 posts, read 2,150 times
Reputation: 10

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Hello everyone! As the title of the post stated, my family is thinking of relocating. But before we get started, this is going to be a doozy of a challenge. So if you like calculus and Rubik's cubes, this one's for you. OK, maybe not *that* bad but pretty darn close.

Here's a description of my family then I'll list our preferences:

Mom is in her early 60s and wants a place to retire. She's Presbyterian and goes to church almost every Sunday. A widow with no interest in dating, she loves dining out, the theater, movies, music, reading and shopping. She's 80% liberal, very girly and big city. Favorite places she's visited: New York City, San Diego, San Francisco, Jackson Hole, WY, Seattle, WA.

Sister is a beautician in her early 30's, also a dedicated singleton. She's agnostic, 100% liberal, very girly. She loves shopping, music, movies, theater, reading, dining out and museums. Favorite places she's visited: Boston, MA, Salem, MA, Seattle, WA and New York City.

I'm also in my early 30's. I'm currently unemployed but have experience as a waitress and as an office worker. I'm single and looking. I'm a blue collar tomboy. I'm spiritual but not religious. Politically, I lean towards being Libertarian. I love reading, music, the outdoors (camping, fishing, hiking, white water rafting, ATV's, horse back riding), dining out and museums. I hate crowds and big cities but love the entertainment cities offer ( I know). Favorite places I've visited: Yellowstone National Park, Montana, Idaho, Wyoming.

If we do relocate, we're going to pool our resources so our combined total income will be between $50,000 and $70,000/year. We will be looking to buy or rent a multigenerational house, a duplex or a triplex.

Population: What I think we need, is a town with a population between 20,000 and 50,000 that is on the outskirts (within a 15 minute drive) of a large city (at least 150,000 and above) or even a town that is *technically* a part of the bigger city. I could also live in a city the size of L.A., Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Chicago, etc. as long as I had an area to escape to. But anything near New York City sized (and density!) is a HECK no.

Weather: We currently live in Salt Lake City. We love the winters but the summers are way too hot. Between 65 to 75 is our ideal temperature. Occasional forays into the upper 70s are acceptable but anything above that is a deal breaker. Muggy and humid (like the deep South) is also out. Other than the heat, spring, fall and summer could be improved with more rain and thunderstorms. We don't want a constant deluge but we do love rainy weather and there isn't much better than sitting on the porch/balcony/whathaveyou watching the storm. Note: storms can turn the air muggy just before it hits and that's fine. I'm talking the type of muggy and humid that sits like a wet blanket and makes everyone look like they just stepped out of the shower. Also: with winter, we don't mind the cold. So Montana-ish winter weather would not be ideal but it would be OK.

Heat Ideal: Southwest Montana and Yellowstone National Park in July and August.

Heat nightmare scenario: Orlando in August (Walt Disney World became the Place Where Nightmares Are Made because of that little gaffe *shudder*).

Geography: Mountains, forests and lakes. Salt Lake City is about 20 minutes away from the mountains (unless you're living in the foothills which we're not rich enough for LOL). And that is good but we'd like to be even closer and we'd love to be *in* the mountains or woods if possible. If not, a 30 to 40 minute drive is OK too. Yes, my city mom and sister love the mountains and woods. Trust me, I don't get it either. Anyway, mountains are a must. A lake or the ocean would be nice. Rainforest would be cool, too. No desert or tundra, please.

Politics and Religion: Salt Lake City is one of the most liberal places in Utah but even here, it's pretty conservative and there's a wee little* problem keeping church and state separate. *Sarcasm. Obviously there's no place where religion plays no role in politics but we would like to live in an area where one church doesn't own almost all the politicians, run the governments and lay down ordinances and laws.

*I know there are going to be people offended by that but this is *our* opinion and *our* relocation needs which is why we are mentioning this on *our* post. If you absolutely must protest please be respectful and remember: You say Tomato, I say Tomoto. Thank you.*

Demographics: None of us are very sociable. We all have small groups of friends we like to hang out with but not large parties. So a college town or miner town with a huge number of bars and parties going on is not our cup of tea. We do need some seniors but not Retirement Village, USA. Also, single and looking here, so a serious (vs. casual) singles scene would be helpful.

Entertainments: Theater, museums (history, science, strange (think Mutter Museum) and the more the merrier), restaurants, shopping, movie theaters, an aquarium, a zoo and well stocked libraries. Also, we do want a place that is animal friendly. We have 4 dogs (5 if we move) so dog parks or dog friendly parks are a must. If they have water to play in, bonus points.

Crime rate: We would like a fairly safe crime rate. Salt Lake is a pretty good example. There are some scary places here but there are also places where it's fairly normal. To that end, if you could include the normal areas, it would be appreciated.

Extra notes: We would also like a place that is fitness friendly. Jogging paths, bike paths, affordable gyms and where a car isn't necessary would be nice. We do have a car and will be getting a second one when I find work but gas is such a pain in the butt that we'd prefer not to have to be dependent on one. However for the right place, walking schmalking. Either way, good transit is a must.

Thank you for your help.
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,815 posts, read 29,862,293 times
Reputation: 38383
I'm overwhelmed with too much info to remember. But, here's what I came away with:

West coast = no humidity
West coast = cooler summers
Northwest coast = mountains

So, maybe Bellingham, WA? I'm also trying to figure out a place where you can have all of the above and live on $50 - $70K/year. Don't know if you'll be able to buy a house on that much money, but you should be able to rent. And it should be pretty pet friendly.

I used to live in Bellingham. Lots of rain, but lots of outdoor activities, islands (San Juans) kayaking, mountains, not far from Vancouver BC or Seattle for more museums, etc.

I've lived on the west coast from CA to WA most of my life. I've always known friends who were church goers and friends who were not, so that wouldn't be a big deal either way.

Someone recently recommended Flagstaff, AZ to someone looking for cool weather in summer. Lots of snow, though, I think and lots of rain in summer. Not familiar with this area, myself.
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Old 06-25-2013, 09:34 AM
 
79,110 posts, read 107,022,039 times
Reputation: 16863
Maybe Oregon City OR, Lafayette or Louisville in CO could work.
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Old 06-25-2013, 11:01 AM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
2,492 posts, read 4,751,816 times
Reputation: 2864
Oregon City is right on the river in the middle of the valley - I think Sandy, OR, in the Cascade foothills, might be better. Or somewhere along the Columbia between Troutdale and Hood River.
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