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Old 06-08-2018, 09:11 PM
 
2 posts, read 1,165 times
Reputation: 15

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Hi all,

For the past couple of years, I haven't been able to stop thinking about moving to California--specifically L.A. or surrounding areas (i.e., Redondo Beach, Manhattan beach, etc). Each time I've visited L.A., I felt like it was home. The energy, the atmosphere, proximity to beaches, weather and opportunities for enjoying the outdoors makes me want to drop everything I'm doing and move there. I am as proud of a Chicagoan as they come. But, recently the negatives have started to outweigh my love for this city.

Some brief background for anyone interested: I was born and raised in Chicago (Wicker Park neighborhood). I grew up attending schools in downtown Chicago and haven't lived anywhere else (aside from studying abroad in France and traveling frequently). I currently work as a Medical Social Worker in a Suburban Hospital and my husband is an accountant for a downtown firm. We live in the outskirts of the city (close to O'Hare Airport). No children yet.

My main reason for wanting to move is the weather. During the long Chicago winters, I want to hibernate and curse myself for living in a place where I have to wear 5 layers to keep warm. And in the summer, I find myself being miserable because I know how short lived it is. Also, the Midwest is boring. In California, driving an hour or two can transport you to a completely different environment--beach, hills, forests, etc. Here..not so much.

One of my concerns about moving is cost of living. I know that the housing market is expensive and although there is a slight pay bump, I've heard it doesn't make up for the difference.
But, my main concern really is leaving my family and network of friends behind. My husband and I don't have children yet, but I can see how great it would be to have grandparents for support (and free babysitting). And the friends I have in Chicago, I have known since we were kids. I've been reading a few forums that say it's harder to make friends in California than anywhere else.

On the other hand, I don't want to live a life of regrets and would love to see if I'd like living somewhere else.


Are there any Chicago transplants living in L.A. that could share some thoughts? For example, what made you move? Are you happy with your decision?
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Old 06-08-2018, 09:18 PM
 
Location: West Los Angeles
10,926 posts, read 10,619,095 times
Reputation: 11021
Quote:
Originally Posted by n_mc34 View Post
Hi all,

For the past couple of years, I haven't been able to stop thinking about moving to California--specifically L.A. or surrounding areas (i.e., Redondo Beach, Manhattan beach, etc). Each time I've visited L.A., I felt like it was home. The energy, the atmosphere, proximity to beaches, weather and opportunities for enjoying the outdoors makes me want to drop everything I'm doing and move there. I am as proud of a Chicagoan as they come. But, recently the negatives have started to outweigh my love for this city.

Some brief background for anyone interested: I was born and raised in Chicago (Wicker Park neighborhood). I grew up attending schools in downtown Chicago and haven't lived anywhere else (aside from studying abroad in France and traveling frequently). I currently work as a Medical Social Worker in a Suburban Hospital and my husband is an accountant for a downtown firm. We live in the outskirts of the city (close to O'Hare Airport). No children yet.

My main reason for wanting to move is the weather. During the long Chicago winters, I want to hibernate and curse myself for living in a place where I have to wear 5 layers to keep warm. And in the summer, I find myself being miserable because I know how short lived it is. Also, the Midwest is boring. In California, driving an hour or two can transport you to a completely different environment--beach, hills, forests, etc. Here..not so much.

One of my concerns about moving is cost of living. I know that the housing market is expensive and although there is a slight pay bump, I've heard it doesn't make up for the difference.
But, my main concern really is leaving my family and network of friends behind. My husband and I don't have children yet, but I can see how great it would be to have grandparents for support (and free babysitting). And the friends I have in Chicago, I have known since we were kids. I've been reading a few forums that say it's harder to make friends in California than anywhere else.

On the other hand, I don't want to live a life of regrets and would love to see if I'd like living somewhere else.


Are there any Chicago transplants living in L.A. that could share some thoughts? For example, what made you move? Are you happy with your decision?
I wouldn't do it. The population here is growing out of control and there's no plan to deal with the traffic, water shortages, crumbling infrastructure, increased violence due to the homeless and early prison release programs, etc.
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Old 06-09-2018, 06:35 AM
 
Location: So Ca
17,574 posts, read 16,377,769 times
Reputation: 15367
Another thread about someone from Chicago contemplating a move to southern California: //www.city-data.com/forum/orang...ing-chino.html

Last edited by Mike from back east; 06-09-2018 at 11:05 AM..
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Old 06-09-2018, 07:47 AM
 
Location: Downtown Phoenix, AZ
20,912 posts, read 8,015,917 times
Reputation: 6539
Quote:
Originally Posted by CA4Now View Post

Another thread about someone from Chicago contemplating a move to southern California: //www.city-data.com/forum/orang...ing-chino.html
Half our transplants are from Chicago

Last edited by Mike from back east; 06-09-2018 at 11:06 AM..
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:17 AM
 
Location: TOVCCA
8,452 posts, read 12,112,244 times
Reputation: 12377
Strongly suggest getting your LCSW first.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:42 AM
 
Location: So Ca
17,574 posts, read 16,377,769 times
Reputation: 15367
Quote:
Originally Posted by FirebirdCamaro1220 View Post
Half our transplants are from Chicago
Retirees in Scottsdale, you mean? And probably few people in the OP's age group.

Last edited by Mike from back east; 06-09-2018 at 11:06 AM..
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:47 AM
 
Location: The edge of the world and all of Western civilization
960 posts, read 949,820 times
Reputation: 1562
To the OP, it took me a very long time to finally get here (the recession set me back about ten years). I know you have a different situation than me, as I don't have kids nor will I ever (not even a subject for discussion if I were in a relationship); I was once worried about the cost of living here too and thought I'd have to remove LA from consideration, because I thought I just wasn't going to be able to earn enough, however after I really crunched the numbers I found that I could make it, and on top of that I'm better off financially overall than I ever could've been in Phoenix as the pay there is so bad in relation to cost of living—in sum, sit down and really figure out a budget.


I will end by saying that I think it was all worth it. A few years ago when I made that move to Phoenix, during the whole process (job offer through moving into the first apartment) I had all kinds of doubts and gut feelings telling me it was a bad idea. It was. Contrarily, when I moved to LA I never once had that gut feeling, and felt like it was the right choice to make. My life has turned around and improved for the better. I barely use this site anymore because I have too much to do; that feeling I had of being angry all the time has faded away pretty quickly; if I were still in Phoenix right now, my day would've been to put on some kind of game, stay inside and play all day, but because I feel better now I'm about to head out for the day. My life has improved exponentially by being in a place I wanted to be in, so my opinion would be to really start working out a budget and pursue the move.

Last edited by Mike from back east; 06-09-2018 at 11:06 AM..
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Old 06-09-2018, 03:25 PM
 
Location: Orange County
262 posts, read 123,135 times
Reputation: 807
As a lot of us say, go ahead and do it, get jobs first, and prepare yourself for things to not be exactly as you imagine, but yes, you will be away from the horrible 4 months of cold and snow.

Some people come and stay, some people come and leave. A gal who was doing my hair had moved to Los Angeles from St Louis with her BF, a young couple, he was a "personal trainer" and thought that he would somehow become personal trainer to the stars (young, good looking, thought he was going to stand out here lol) and within 1 year they were flat broke and moved home. BUT--they tried. And now they got it out of their system.

Other people come and never look back. So why not try it? Good luck!
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Old 06-11-2018, 03:59 PM
 
Location: San Fernando Valley
240 posts, read 146,442 times
Reputation: 236
I came from your friendly neighboring city of Detroit when myself and my now husband (then boyfriend) made the leap to LA after college. I came with a basic 'starter' job making $15/hr, he did not have a job at all - both of us were fresh out of college. Fast forward 12 years and we have careers, kids, a house - all without family to rely on. Our careers aren't anything that couldn't be done elsewhere (I'm a Realtor, he's a teacher) but we have no intentions of ever going back. We love where we live. We like the weather, the things to do, the political atmosphere, the people. We've built 'our village' - our network of friends who are like the family. There's a ton of other transplants here, in similar boats to ourselves, and we've bonded together to create lives we love. I will admit that it can be rough sometimes living so far from the grandparents for our kids but we make do and visit as often as we can.

My point is if you want to make the jump, DO IT. You never know unless you try. What's the worse that will happen? You'll decide you want to go back? At least you won't have a 'what if' hanging over your head. Live life and all that jazz.
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Old 06-11-2018, 05:05 PM
DKM
 
Location: Thousand Oaks, CA
3,854 posts, read 1,371,442 times
Reputation: 3392
Many transplants living here. It was a huge adjustment to the COL, leaving behind friends and family who I do miss a lot. But you heard wrong about it being hard to make friends here. I'd say its easier than anywhere I've seen. Maybe due to the friendly culture. Maybe because most people are transplants so had to make friends anyways. Maybe because the climate gets you outside more. But LA is stratified and segregated. I really suggest you move into an area that fits your cultural and political outlook.
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