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Old 02-15-2007, 12:54 PM
42 posts, read 118,640 times
Reputation: 57


This is for anyone thinking about moving from NE Illinois to NW Illinois. Also, this is only my opinion, so let's not start nit-picking opinions. (Mine or anyone else who may post here. Thanks.)
If you are contemplating a move west it all depends on what you are looking for and what you are willing to leave behind. There are pros and cons to living in either place. If you have never lived in the other area, then be prepared for some culture shock. If you are looking for a quiet place to retire, then the NW might be for you. You will have to give up some things, though. Many ammenities might not be at your fingertips anymore. You will have to drive to find major shopping and truly fine dining. The scenery can make up for the drive though. You will come out ahead on housing. You could sell your 2000 sq. ft. ranch in the burbs for $200G-$300G and buy a 3000 sq.ft. 4 bed, 2 story, on an acre of land, on a paved state maintained road, pay less in property taxes, and still have $100G to invest or spend on your grandkids. I bought my 28 wooded acres with a creek, and put the 2500sq.ft. ranch on it all for just over $200G. It takes me less than 5 min to drive into "town". You have to remember that the farther west you go the more rural it gets, until you get near the Quad Cities. If you don't want rural, try Rockford or east or there. If you don't want to change zip codes when you cross the street, go west of Rockford. I didn't grow up in the "big city", so I can't express any real opinion of living there. I'm sure it has many good point and bad ones too. If you enjoy hunting and fishing and walking in the woods, (not just a wooded area that hasn't been sold to a developer yet) the NW has lots of it.

As for the economy, it isn't as strong out here as it is the closer you get to Chicago. There are many farming communities out here and not much for the business and commerce end of things. That's not to say all you will find out here is corn and beans. The cost of living is lower, but so are the economic opportunities. If you are middle management and are looking to move, I wouldn't look west of Rockford.

Our schools aren't as good as they are in the burbs due to the tax structure. We aren't a bunch of hicks and yokels, but the better schools are definitely east. If you have children and school is important then maybe you should stay east until they are done. It's not that the curriculum is any diffrent, but more things like class size and quality of materials. You can grow up here and be a sucess, you may just have to work harder at it. Also you don't see the drug and gang problems in our schools as much as in the burbs and farther east. It is becoming more prevalent though as families from larger areas move into the smaller areas.

The crime is lower here, but I have to wonder if it isn't nearly the same per every 1000 persons. ( 1 crime/1000 people = 10 crimes/10,000 people). It is just a fact that the fewer people living in an area the lower the crime. (Markham is probabaly the exception though.)

I guess if you are planning a move west, you should come out here and visit. Just stop into any town out here and just start talking to people. You will probably find some who have already made the move west and have a definite opinion, and many "lifers". Visit often and ask about the surrounding areas, places to go, things to see, etc. There is much more to do out here than most "easterners" think. Many places of real interest and history, and places of geat scenery, hidden in small out of the way places. Even President Reagan was born in a town of less than 800 people and grew up in the "dumpy" (only as I have heard it refered to on here) little town of Dixon.

Like I said this is only my opinion, and if you are looking to move it all depends on what you are looking for and what you are willing to give up.

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Old 02-16-2007, 06:37 AM
Location: Chadwick IL
12 posts, read 48,808 times
Reputation: 15
Talking Good job there

Originally Posted by hat_man View Post
If you are contemplating a move west it all depends on what you are looking for and what you are willing to leave behind. hat_man
(see above to read quoted post)
Well said it seams you nailed it on the head I have grown up in this area. I also have family in the burbs so I get to see that also just to visit. We are seeing more and more people moving out from the city or there reason what ever it is.
Mr Train Living in the NW and loving it
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