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Old 08-21-2008, 12:01 PM
 
Location: Texas
182 posts, read 441,377 times
Reputation: 94

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Hi,

I am a college student, who is about to be married and adopt a 2 year old. I am majoring in wildlife management to get my certification as a wildlife biologist. I want to work for the government and am interested in taking a job in Montana.

I just need to have a few questions answered.

1.) Is Montana a good place for a newly graduated student to take a job and live?
2.) What are the prices on property? Taxes?
3.) Is Montana a good place to raise a child?

Here are other states I am interested in moving to:
Alaska
New Mexico
Colorado
Nebraska
South Dakota
North Dakota
Wyoming
Utah


I really appreciate the help!

Jessica

P.S. We love the idea of mountain life and would prefer cooler summers. We are very tired of the heat here in Texas.
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Old 08-21-2008, 12:24 PM
 
Location: Texas
182 posts, read 441,377 times
Reputation: 94
Why wouldn't I regret it?

I would really like to live within a 30 minute drive of mountains and ski areas.
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Old 08-21-2008, 12:28 PM
 
1,305 posts, read 2,464,353 times
Reputation: 238
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmmcnally View Post
Hi,

I am a college student, who is about to be married and adopt a 2 year old. I am majoring in wildlife management to get my certification as a wildlife biologist. I want to work for the government and am interested in taking a job in Montana.

I just need to have a few questions answered.

1.) Is Montana a good place for a newly graduated student to take a job and live?
2.) What are the prices on property? Taxes?
3.) Is Montana a good place to raise a child?
Congrats on nearly college graduation, getting married, and adopting! That's a lot of things to be all happening at the same time.

As far as your questions, here is my best shot at the answers:

1) It all depends what you are looking for. Are you a traditional student (22 years old or so)? There's not a lot of younger people living in Montana except for the college towns, so if your into doing things with people your own age, you may not find a lot of that. If you love (can afford to and can take your 2 year old along) to go hiking, skiing, camping, backpacking, etc, etc, you'll find plenty of opportunities.

2) Property is generally considered expensive in Montana. It partially depends on where you go - the town of St. Marie, near Glasglow, has very affordable housing (you can probably buy a house for about $50,000 there), but Western Montana (which is the pretty part of the state) and Bozeman (college town) are both expensive, with homes running $300k upwards into the millions.

What makes it difficult is not the straight price but how expensive it is compared to the salaries. Wildlife biology jobs are hotly competitive and frequently don't pay very well, so it can be challenging to buy land and property here. You didn't say what your husband does, but with a 2 year old, you'll need to factor in daycare expenses as well.

3) It depends on how you define "good". Montana is generally a safe place with relatively little crime. As you will read on here, drugs have inflitrated the state and kids do drink and do drugs here. Probably not worse than other states but meth is a huge problem. Our state is almost entirely single-race (white) so your kids won't experience diversity. Some think that's a good thing and some think that's a bad thing. There's a lot of outdoor activities (in the summer especially) to do things but it can be hard to get outside in the winter unless you live near a ski town.

Your big thing will be getting a job. It's worth applying for but the wildlife positions are hard to come by.
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Old 08-21-2008, 12:31 PM
 
1,305 posts, read 2,464,353 times
Reputation: 238
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmmcnally View Post
Why wouldn't I regret it?

I would really like to live within a 30 minute drive of mountains and ski areas.
This came through after my last post. 30 minute drive of mountains and ski areas will cost you a good bit of cash! Whitefish (Big Mountain Ski Resort, now called Whitefish Mountain Ski resort) is a very expensive town and the surrounding towns don't qualify as cheap. Big thing about skiing is that it's not an inexpensive hobby - lift tickets run $40 - $60 per person, plus lunches, gas, and equipment is pricey.

All of the ski towns are very pricey to live in.
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Old 08-21-2008, 06:48 PM
 
Location: Texas
182 posts, read 441,377 times
Reputation: 94
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigtrees View Post
Congrats on nearly college graduation, getting married, and adopting! That's a lot of things to be all happening at the same time.

As far as your questions, here is my best shot at the answers:

1) It all depends what you are looking for. Are you a traditional student (22 years old or so)? There's not a lot of younger people living in Montana except for the college towns, so if your into doing things with people your own age, you may not find a lot of that. If you love (can afford to and can take your 2 year old along) to go hiking, skiing, camping, backpacking, etc, etc, you'll find plenty of opportunities.

2) Property is generally considered expensive in Montana. It partially depends on where you go - the town of St. Marie, near Glasglow, has very affordable housing (you can probably buy a house for about $50,000 there), but Western Montana (which is the pretty part of the state) and Bozeman (college town) are both expensive, with homes running $300k upwards into the millions.

What makes it difficult is not the straight price but how expensive it is compared to the salaries. Wildlife biology jobs are hotly competitive and frequently don't pay very well, so it can be challenging to buy land and property here. You didn't say what your husband does, but with a 2 year old, you'll need to factor in daycare expenses as well.

3) It depends on how you define "good". Montana is generally a safe place with relatively little crime. As you will read on here, drugs have inflitrated the state and kids do drink and do drugs here. Probably not worse than other states but meth is a huge problem. Our state is almost entirely single-race (white) so your kids won't experience diversity. Some think that's a good thing and some think that's a bad thing. There's a lot of outdoor activities (in the summer especially) to do things but it can be hard to get outside in the winter unless you live near a ski town.

Your big thing will be getting a job. It's worth applying for but the wildlife positions are hard to come by.
I am 20 right now, but will be 22 when I graduate. My niece will be around 4-5 years old and my fiance/husband will be 25 at the time of my graduation. He has no degree, but is definitely looking into getting some kind of small engine repair/welding associate's degree after my graduation. He is naturally talented in things such as home construction, plumibing, electrical work, welding, fence work and mechanicing. For a young fellow, he is quite the busy bee when it comes to work. He is also interested in possible oil field work.
We are saving money up for possible purchase of a home. Honestly, though, the way it sounds most homes will be out of our range because we really would like to buy a home with acreage. I probably go where the best offer takes me.
Thanks for the help. I will keep in touch.
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Old 08-21-2008, 06:49 PM
 
Location: Texas
182 posts, read 441,377 times
Reputation: 94
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigtrees View Post
This came through after my last post. 30 minute drive of mountains and ski areas will cost you a good bit of cash! Whitefish (Big Mountain Ski Resort, now called Whitefish Mountain Ski resort) is a very expensive town and the surrounding towns don't qualify as cheap. Big thing about skiing is that it's not an inexpensive hobby - lift tickets run $40 - $60 per person, plus lunches, gas, and equipment is pricey.

All of the ski towns are very pricey to live in.
The thing is, I am the only one who skiis, and between a growing family and work, I probably won't have much time to do it, but that's alright. I am more looking into just the scenery and the activities that come along with skiing. I would definitely take a home that has the view, but was a few hours from a ski lodge.
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