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Old 11-29-2006, 10:03 PM
 
Location: Morrisville, North Carolina
465 posts, read 2,336,313 times
Reputation: 383

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I have been on this forum just about a week now, and am interested in moving to Cali (don't know where yet, leaning toward SoCal) but all I keep hearing about is the high cost of living, high gas prices, no one can afford to buy because you need a six figure income, everything's soooo expensive, blah, blah, blah. So besides the rich people being rich, and the poor being poor, where do the middle class fit in? What quality of life am I looking at making $60K-$90K a year as a nurse?
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Old 11-29-2006, 10:12 PM
 
Location: Sherman Oaks, CA
6,566 posts, read 16,617,900 times
Reputation: 9361
Default Quality of Life?

Making 60-90K, if you're single, you'll be fine. You'll easily be able to afford a one-bedroom apartment in a decent area. One-bedrooms in my building are going for about $1,150. Two bedrooms are $1,350. Of course, these apartments aren't the best. No elevator. No secured parking. Window air-conditioners. Thin walls (older building), so you can hear your neighbors sneeze. You're paying for the "area", which in all honesty, is sliding slowly down the tubes like the rest of the San Fernando Valley.

As for affording a condo, as I posted on another thread, condos across the street from me are going for $400,000 and up. If you get creative financing, you might be able to afford that, but this is probably a bad time to buy.

A real nice apartment in a good area is going to run $1,500 and up for a one-bedroom. It just depends on the quality of life that you're willing to pay for. Before you commit to one, though, be sure to check it on one of the apartment rating websites; sometimes the management companies are very misleading. I hope this helps!
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Old 11-29-2006, 11:09 PM
 
Location: California
11,464 posts, read 18,361,051 times
Reputation: 12680
The middle class just survives, i bought my house many years ago and I don't do credit cards or refinances that would raise my bills, I do okay but I know so many people who are right on the edge of loosing everything. being your single and hopefully debit free you will do fine.
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Old 11-30-2006, 02:15 AM
 
923 posts, read 3,384,413 times
Reputation: 204
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeweloflight View Post
I have been on this forum just about a week now, and am interested in moving to Cali (don't know where yet, leaning toward SoCal) but all I keep hearing about is the high cost of living, high gas prices, no one can afford to buy because you need a six figure income, everything's soooo expensive, blah, blah, blah. So besides the rich people being rich, and the poor being poor, where do the middle class fit in? What quality of life am I looking at making $60K-$90K a year as a nurse?
They DO NOT...

If you are a RN (Especially w/ ED, OR or ICU experience CA is the place to be.
Work with a travel agency with housing allowance in Rancho Mirage or Bay area. I would avoid LA like the "Black Death".
Make a Fortune for a few years(120k-150k per year w/ ot)and move to a livable State and buy a house...
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Old 11-30-2006, 02:00 PM
 
Location: Eugene Oregon
346 posts, read 2,065,694 times
Reputation: 303
Default Move

We (the middle class) survive by moving elsewhere... where it is cheaper. That's why the middle class is dying in California.
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Old 11-30-2006, 02:16 PM
 
107 posts, read 703,953 times
Reputation: 104
We survive but don't thrive. Eventually the lack of disposable income caused by ever increasing living expenses in L.A. means you do nothing, can't affford to. All those "pluses" about living here mean zilch, and you start researching on the internet where your salary means you could thrive as well as merely survive. Then leave.
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Old 11-30-2006, 02:22 PM
 
Location: Eugene Oregon
346 posts, read 2,065,694 times
Reputation: 303
Yes Perdu you're exactly right! There is SO much to do in Southern California but you cannot do any of it if you are middle class or lower due to the fact that you're just trying to "get by" financially. I have a super strict budget where I can do one fun thing per month like go to the movies but that's about all my living expenses can afford me. I can't take advantage of the cool things and fun places the area has to offer because of costs and especially because of traffic. You'll waste an entire day of your weekend just trying to GET somewhere so you can do something fun and it takes the fun right out of it. There IS plenty to do in LA and California in general but it's the getting the money to get there and then the getting there that is the hard and very depressing part.
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Old 11-30-2006, 05:04 PM
 
Location: Working on relocating
800 posts, read 4,123,288 times
Reputation: 505
Default Such doom and gloom...

I don't post much here any more because of all the doom and gloom.

I know there's good and bad points to living in any area, but after visiting Southern California two years in a row, I'm more convinced that it's where I belong

Hubby and I don't have children and both make good salaries. We won't ever own a 3000 sq. foot home in So. Cal, but that's not our priority. Really, it's all about priorities. I don't need to eat out or go to the movies. I don't need a fancy car or a big house. For fun, I'm happiest just sitting watching the ocean. (Some will chime in and say the beaches in So. Cal. are dirty, polluted and crowded and there's so much traffic to get to them. Blah, blah, blah... ).

Life is what you make it. I've never had a problem creating a wonderful life to support myself and more. I've never had to just 'survive' (well, in college LOL). I've always been taken care of and I say life is too short not to move where your heart guides you to be

Go for it! Forget the naysayers

I can't wait until I get my condo in Huntington Beach Yay!
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Old 11-30-2006, 05:40 PM
 
1,398 posts, read 6,366,042 times
Reputation: 1832
Angel Bear, your sunny attitude is a gift, and probably serves you quite well in your life. I wish you sincere good luck with your Huntington Beach condo.

However... it's not so much naysaying from some of us lifelong L.A. residents so much as a furthering of information if one wants a dollop of reality alongside one's dreams. Which I believe people who don't live here just might prize: a move across the country is hard enough without unfortunate to possibly tragic surprises. Imagine someone moving to Compton because it's the same priced housing as they're used to elsewhere.

For instance, I would add to your entirely accurate comment that life is about priorities and trade-offs. The trade-offs for the middle class here are on a downward spiral as we are required to pay the way for the burgeoning numbers of illegals receiving services that we citizens do not. Personal finance-wise, everyone now rethinks all car trips, all longer commutes which are necessitated by not being able to afford living near a better business center are a roulette wheel spin of guessing how long the commute will take (it goes from normal, long congested to a quaint term we locals know as "Sigalerts," an old news radio quip from someone named Sig, which now even the police use to indicate traffic at a dead standstill for a minimum of thirty minutes, with of course the resultant delays after that.)

Sample trade-offs? Our sunny skies are, except next to the beach, are sort of "nougat-colored" as a local humorist put it, right at the horizon every day except when it rains or is incredibly windy, because of the never-ceasing smog problem. The young won't notice it, but because our level of smog has been equated with causing the exact damage as a pack of cigarettes a day to the lungs, the selfsame young person will definitely notice their respiratory problems come thirty years from now.

Sample trade-offs personally to keep up with L.A.'s inflation: the first thing I gave up ten years ago was ever paying for parking- I'll walk 15 blocks out of my way and use the meters to save. Then I gave up all clothing replacement except for thrift store, discount or resale. Then gave up all clothing replacement. Then gave up movies, then movie rentals. Then I gave up ever dining out, and made excuses to all friends. This is the trade-off for a lower income person, married to a teacher (also lower income) here in L.A. You all want this to be your future? Our plan is to move away.
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Old 11-30-2006, 07:22 PM
 
Location: santa cruz
111 posts, read 249,821 times
Reputation: 22
Its attitudes like angeles that make the lower middle class survive. The will simply to fight on. The middle class survives on a thin blue line of condo's, townhomes, bungalos, and large tract homes inland.
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