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Old 09-13-2018, 04:18 PM
 
97 posts, read 163,630 times
Reputation: 33

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Hi,

I've posted here a number of times when I received a job offer and thought we might actually relocate, but it hasn't happened yet. We live in NYC and have since we were married 14 years ago. I received a unique job offer in Michigan near my hometown, a small community in Southwest Michigan. It's a sizable offer with a lot of incentives, and more than I earn here. Sounds like it could make sense for us.

We have our four kids (6-11) in a good school. While we earn a lot of money and are generally comfortable, it's never enough here. I'm looking down the road a couple of years when my 6th grader will go to high school. If we stay in NYC, it will likely be private and anywhere from $20-45k per year. Then there are the other three behind him. And then I want to be able to pay for their college. While we have a good savings account for this, it won't be enough to fund all of that education and I don't know if we can get there.

The kids are in a lot of activities, have good friends, and are developing deep bonds to their school. They don't have enough room here--all share one big bedroom in bunk beds. My wife has a job she doesn't like very much but does a number of creative activities on the side that could be lucrative if she was able to spend more time on those.

Here are the drawbacks. My wife doesn't like my parents (both in late 70s) and we'd be moving to within an hour of them. The towns near the job are pretty small and I can't figure out if the schools are any good, or how they compare to our good schools here. Many of the kids activities would be curtailed. Small town living might be weird for my wife, who is originally from a small Midwest town, but does not like to drive and is used to walking everywhere. We wouldn't know anyone and we would need to unwind the pretty good lives we built in NYC for ourselves and the kids.

Here are the benefits. My wife could stay home and do the work she loves instead of going into the tv studio every day. We could buy a nice house (but where?) and school would either be public or lower cost private. Kids could see their grandparents and cousins more often. We could go to the beach and sail like I did growing up. More space, a yard, and a chance to exhale a little bit because NYC is a pressure cooker. The kids could ride their bikes and play basketball in the driveway. It also gets my wife closer to her Indiana relatives and family farm that she loves.

My wife is reluctant but feels like perhaps we should do this because of the financial aspect and potential improvement in our home/living space. She also wants the kids to have a place to call home besides a modest apartment in Manhattan.

I think we should not do it because my wife will be miserable and the rest of us will end up following her lead.

Let me hear from those who may have gone through this. Thanks.
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Old 09-14-2018, 11:25 AM
 
229 posts, read 86,999 times
Reputation: 743
Mlive.com often posts news articles with searchable databases on all the Michigan school districts. That might help you get a feel for how the area schools perform. I'm not sure how small you're talking. Is it within commuting distance of a larger city? I'm just thinking a larger city or suburb might feel more livable to you all, despite being a bit more expensive than, say, a more rural area.
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Old 09-26-2018, 09:33 AM
 
Location: Wyoming Michigan
57 posts, read 40,105 times
Reputation: 90
I think you should pile the family into the car and come for a visit. Take the family to the beach towns of Saugatuck, Grand Haven, and Holland and to some of the great things in Grand Rapids. We have lots of Natural outdoor activities around.
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Old 09-28-2018, 12:25 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
8,885 posts, read 18,149,713 times
Reputation: 3888
Quote:
Originally Posted by Water 4 the Pool View Post
Hi,

I've posted here a number of times when I received a job offer and thought we might actually relocate, but it hasn't happened yet. We live in NYC and have since we were married 14 years ago. I received a unique job offer in Michigan near my hometown, a small community in Southwest Michigan. It's a sizable offer with a lot of incentives, and more than I earn here. Sounds like it could make sense for us.

We have our four kids (6-11) in a good school. While we earn a lot of money and are generally comfortable, it's never enough here. I'm looking down the road a couple of years when my 6th grader will go to high school. If we stay in NYC, it will likely be private and anywhere from $20-45k per year. Then there are the other three behind him. And then I want to be able to pay for their college. While we have a good savings account for this, it won't be enough to fund all of that education and I don't know if we can get there.

The kids are in a lot of activities, have good friends, and are developing deep bonds to their school. They don't have enough room here--all share one big bedroom in bunk beds. My wife has a job she doesn't like very much but does a number of creative activities on the side that could be lucrative if she was able to spend more time on those.

Here are the drawbacks. My wife doesn't like my parents (both in late 70s) and we'd be moving to within an hour of them. The towns near the job are pretty small and I can't figure out if the schools are any good, or how they compare to our good schools here. Many of the kids activities would be curtailed. Small town living might be weird for my wife, who is originally from a small Midwest town, but does not like to drive and is used to walking everywhere. We wouldn't know anyone and we would need to unwind the pretty good lives we built in NYC for ourselves and the kids.

Here are the benefits. My wife could stay home and do the work she loves instead of going into the tv studio every day. We could buy a nice house (but where?) and school would either be public or lower cost private. Kids could see their grandparents and cousins more often. We could go to the beach and sail like I did growing up. More space, a yard, and a chance to exhale a little bit because NYC is a pressure cooker. The kids could ride their bikes and play basketball in the driveway. It also gets my wife closer to her Indiana relatives and family farm that she loves.

My wife is reluctant but feels like perhaps we should do this because of the financial aspect and potential improvement in our home/living space. She also wants the kids to have a place to call home besides a modest apartment in Manhattan.

I think we should not do it because my wife will be miserable and the rest of us will end up following her lead.

Let me hear from those who may have gone through this. Thanks.
$20K - $45K a year for high school? X4 kids? That to me would be reason enough to get out of dodge. And not to mention then college. That's over a $Million to get all 4 of your kids to just a bachelor's degree. And really I have no idea how much college is in New York, I'm basing it on the average of $24,000/year here in Michigan for a public 4 year degree. And strapping your kids with student loans for several decades after college is something that we're trying very hard not to do with our 3 teenagers.

In West Michigan there are great public schools and our taxes are pretty reasonable (part of our property taxes pay for schools). The average in a lot of the townships is around 1.5% of your property value per year. If you get into the more affluent areas (or areas in cities like Kalamazoo or Grand Rapids where you don't necessarily need a car), they'll be more like 1.8% - 2.0% per year.

I'd agree with GrandRapidsNative, make a trip this Fall. Leaves won't reach peak colors for another couple of weeks so a mid-October drive would be fun. I want to say it's about an 11 hour drive? Or some people cut through Ontario and Upstate New York for a little more picturesque drive, but a little longer.
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