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Old 06-23-2011, 07:13 PM
 
12,825 posts, read 20,863,618 times
Reputation: 10936

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I spent my first few years out of school in the Southland then returned to NorCal (specifically the Bay Area). It took me a really long time to get established and become a home owner. This was even though I am a professional (tech / infotainment / etc). Even now, other than being a homeowner, I live the way many new grads live in other parts of the country. We are childless. We live very frugally, in order to allow enough cash flow for both living expenses, what is left of our mortgage and retirement. Even with the real estate problems the value is still high. We will have to cash out when we get older, in order to have enough to last us if we live into our 90s or beyond. We will definitely leave the coastal urban environment if not the state.
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Old 06-25-2011, 09:49 AM
 
Location: Des Moines, IA
219 posts, read 571,159 times
Reputation: 80
Quote:
Originally Posted by Senshi View Post
If you want an Iowa life stay in Iowa. That is the best advice I can give. I don't want to sound mean but it almost seems like you want to bring Iowa with you.

A three bedroom townhouse? In the Valley? Stay in Iowa if that is what you want. Anything you can afford, townhouse wise, is going to be either too far from the city to enjoy it or in a horrible neighborhood (probably both).

If you want something different from Iowa, completely different, you gotta live in the Basin. That is where most of the excitement happens. And you're not gonna get a Townhouse. You give up space for all the benefits of living in Los Angeles. Is that the life you really want?

I could easily live on $2,500 a month. And I live in the "good" area of Hollywood. But I also live in an apartment, with a roommate, and gave up owning a car. I HATED driving here. The traffic, the gas prices, parking... People find all sorts of ways to live here. I decided to live in an area where public transit was feasible!

It's a different life from the midwestern life that I once lived. But, honestly, I wouldn't go back to that old life.

Hey everyone!

Hm.. Senshi, you might be right. I probably do want to bring a little bit of Iowa with me. I won't deny it. My primary choice would be to have a townhouse outside of the city proper, in a nice neighborhood. Call it suburban I suppose but moving to the LA area is going to be a big enough culture shock for me... at least at first. I really don't want to live in the middle of things right away. I will definitely need a car because I will be relying on my healthcare experience to pay my bills for a while, and often I have to drive to different people's homes. I would LOVE to live a bohemian studio apartment lifestyle in the middle of Hollywood, but the truth is I have too much ****. And I'm going to need my own bit of space to keep my sanity, because I'll be moving there with 2 roommates.

I have found several townhouses in the area that fit into my price range, some of them in decent neighborhoods in the SFV. I can deal with the commute to the basin. Remember... I live in Iowa, where I have to drive over 1,000 miles in each direction to get to either ocean that surrounds the lower 48? I can definitely handle an hour's commute when I live in the LA area. At least during my first year. After that, who knows? I might want to delve completely into the city, or I might want to leave it entirely.

I am willing to sacrifice the townhouse if it means being able to afford to live in the city. If I have to go with an apartment, I will do that. I'm no stranger to sacrifice. And I'd rather be struggling in L.A. than living a comfortable cushion of a life in DSM. Basically, I'm just curious how far my money is going to get me so that I am prepared when I get out there.

David-- I don't know why so many people would knock Denver. I loved it there. Colorado is a nature lover's paradise and I would love to live there someday, at least for a while.
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Old 06-25-2011, 10:43 AM
 
11,715 posts, read 36,708,840 times
Reputation: 7522
Other people's ideas about living "outside the city" and commuting in don't quite apply in LA. LA is HUGE. 30 minutes of driving (especially in the round-the-clock rush hour) doesn't get you anywhere very different in terms of density. The SFV is just as urban and crowded as anything in Des Moines. Northridge to downtown LA is not the same thing as Ames to downtown Des Moines even though the distances are similar. One is a highly congested urban struggle the entire way while one is mostly cruise control through farmland. Guess which one is more draining.
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Old 06-25-2011, 11:51 AM
 
Location: California
31,586 posts, read 34,827,179 times
Reputation: 27237
Since it sounds like you guys are coming out without jobs yes, you will most definitely need cars. If you pick your place to live first then you should concentrate on finding work close to that. You may not have to go into LA, or LA proper, at all.
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Old 06-25-2011, 01:54 PM
 
35 posts, read 87,337 times
Reputation: 20
Not all Cali is expensive! Yes LA and SF and SD are, =and along the coast for the most part. But the coast along northern cali is a great deal if you don't mind the cooler ocean weather. The Desert area is cheap esp good deal is Victorville/Apple Valley are. All new suburban area with good schools, affordable, etc. Northern Calif is the best! Gorgeous weather with 4 seasons, mountains, forest, terrain, etc. you name it! Very affordable up there and safe and good schools too. Chico/Paradise area is awesome as well as Redding area. Sacramento is good too.
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Old 06-25-2011, 10:23 PM
 
11,715 posts, read 36,708,840 times
Reputation: 7522
Quote:
Originally Posted by rosemarie87 View Post
Not all Cali is expensive! Yes LA and SF and SD are, =and along the coast for the most part. But the coast along northern cali is a great deal if you don't mind the cooler ocean weather. The Desert area is cheap esp good deal is Victorville/Apple Valley are. All new suburban area with good schools, affordable, etc. Northern Calif is the best! Gorgeous weather with 4 seasons, mountains, forest, terrain, etc. you name it! Very affordable up there and safe and good schools too. Chico/Paradise area is awesome as well as Redding area. Sacramento is good too.
The cheap parts of the state are either economically depressed, lack the climate people dream of, or both.
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Old 06-26-2011, 03:04 PM
 
Location: West New York, NJ
69 posts, read 135,455 times
Reputation: 51
Answer: We live in New York or New Jersey first and then when moving here find everything affordable.
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Old 06-26-2011, 07:26 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
932 posts, read 604,760 times
Reputation: 2276
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles View Post
Heck, why live so luxuriously?

This guy is perfectly content. And he has a higher net worth than 15% of the people in LA and Orange County: They're underwater and he owes nothing.
Love your sense of humor. :-)
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Old 06-26-2011, 07:30 PM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,345 posts, read 84,816,017 times
Reputation: 17581
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaliforniaGal View Post
Love your sense of humor. :-)
I wish the moderators would. I get banned for up to a week every few weeks.
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Old 06-26-2011, 07:31 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
932 posts, read 604,760 times
Reputation: 2276
California is very expensive. I wanted to get away from California until we decided to buy my husbands family home. I'm glad we stayed and I will tell you, you have to just watch your money. My husband and I were both born in California and have been here for 50+ years. It's tough...not like it was when we were growing up in the 60's and 70's.
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