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Old 05-26-2020, 05:02 PM
 
Location: North Burb Chicago
395 posts, read 3,530,443 times
Reputation: 354

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Hi everone.

So I have a job offer for a possible relocation to San Mateo.
The job won't be begin until 1/21.
Family won't join me until summer of 21.

Family of 4 with 2 kids in HS.
Coming from IL, just outside Chicago.

Not only will there be no COL adjustment given, I'd also be taking a pay cut.
Yeah crazy I know, LOL.
But it's a phenomenal opportunity that here in the midwest, not to many people get.

Haven't finalized the salary but it's between $375-400K.

So, is $375-400k salary enough for a family of four to live on out in peninsula?
I know we'd have to make some adjustments to adjust to the COL out there, that's a given.

When I say enough, I mean comfortably.
I know comfort is subjective and means something differently for everyone.
Going out to eat, maybe a movie, a new car down the road, etc...

Aside house and car payments, we have no other big expenses.

Just looking on redfin, it's gonna be a struggle to buy a house equivalent to what we have now.
We'd be looking at 3bd/3bth and those are thru the roof!!!

So I'm guessing we'd be renting for 2-3 years before we could buy a house we'd like.

Because we are so far away from this possible move, haven't really started to look at locations to live in.

Right now our concern is more of is $375-400K doable out in the bay area.

Thoughts?
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Old 05-26-2020, 07:47 PM
 
Location: Richmond, CA
880 posts, read 703,423 times
Reputation: 1081
Public high school or private? Car payments for a Lexus or Ferrari? If the former for each, then you should be fine. But yes, expect to rent. It'll be more cost effective to buy in Hayward rather than San Mateo, but there are pros and cons. You can live here for a year before you start making those kinds of decisions.
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Old 05-26-2020, 07:58 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
5,250 posts, read 6,785,699 times
Reputation: 4863
Definitely doable, but you'll have to makes some sacrifices. Not real sacrifices like people who have to put up with 2 hour commutes, or people who have to send their kids to undesirable public schools, or people who have to live with extended family members to save on childcare costs. But you may be mildly inconvenienced since your bang-for-buck is going to take a hit moving to the most desirable/expensive metro in the country. Do let us know
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Old 05-26-2020, 08:44 PM
 
Location: North Burb Chicago
395 posts, read 3,530,443 times
Reputation: 354
Thanks for the responses.

Reason I asked is because I'm reading articles of how families on $300-400K are struggling to survive in the Bay Area.
And I'm thinking WTH??
What am I missing here that on $400K families struggle to make ends meet???
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Old 05-26-2020, 09:17 PM
 
2,565 posts, read 4,182,428 times
Reputation: 3104
Are you open to a commute? If you're on the peninsula in a nice area, prepare to spend over $2M for an older 3 bedroom bungalow. If you're willing to commute further, you could live out in the tri-valley and get a nicer, larger house for a lower price.

We made the move from the peninsula to the tri-valley about 5 years ago and were in a similar situation as you in terms of household income, 2 young kids, etc. For a while, it was just something I dealt with. I didn't enjoy the commute, but liked the extra space, better schools and good communities out here. I learned to adjust by going to work and leaving a little early, carpooling and telecommuting 1-2 days per week. With COVID, I think we're all going to be revisiting how often we need to go into the office, so my setup suddenly seems like a much more attractive option.
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Old 05-26-2020, 09:31 PM
 
Location: North Burb Chicago
395 posts, read 3,530,443 times
Reputation: 354
I'd like to keep the commute to 20-30 minutes max to and from.
I believe the job will be in San Mateo but it doesn't mean we have to live there.
As long as we can find a place to rent that is at most 30 minutes away, I *think* we will be ok.
Close to work, safe area, good HS, and we are golden.

But again, even before all that, our concern is mainly the income.
Can we survive out there with the proposed salary.

The more I read on COL out there, the more I get worried.
For every you'll be fine article I find, I read the you need at least $500K annually to survive, LOL.
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Old 05-26-2020, 09:34 PM
 
2,565 posts, read 4,182,428 times
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I don't think you'll struggle to "survive", but you will need to adjust your lifestyle and expectations. I'd say you should look at these three factors and assume you can only have two with your income and decide what is the most important:

-Nice Home
-Good Schools
-Relatively Easy Commute
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Old 05-27-2020, 01:03 AM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
13,527 posts, read 18,653,259 times
Reputation: 20145
I live in San Mateo.

400k annually means roughly 20k net after taxes and 401k deductions.

A big 3BR/3BA home in a decent Burlingame neighborhood rents for 6-7k. For example: https://sfbay.craigslist.org/pen/apa...115472695.html

Or a more simple rancher in San Mateo for 5-6k, like this one near Serra High (Tom Brady’s alma mater): https://sfbay.craigslist.org/pen/apa...130949323.html

Of course you can spend more if you want. After paying rent, I’m pretty sure you can live comfortably on 13k/ month.

Starter homes in decent neighborhoods in San Mateo starts at around $1.5M in the lowlands and much more in the highlands or hills.

I’d look in Burlingame, San Mateo, Foster City, Belmont, and San Carlos to be close to work.
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Old 05-27-2020, 08:57 AM
 
2,565 posts, read 4,182,428 times
Reputation: 3104
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaypee View Post
I live in San Mateo.

400k annually means roughly 20k net after taxes and 401k deductions.

A big 3BR/3BA home in a decent Burlingame neighborhood rents for 6-7k. For example: https://sfbay.craigslist.org/pen/apa...115472695.html

Or a more simple rancher in San Mateo for 5-6k, like this one near Serra High (Tom Brady’s alma mater): https://sfbay.craigslist.org/pen/apa...130949323.html

Of course you can spend more if you want. After paying rent, I’m pretty sure you can live comfortably on 13k/ month.

Starter homes in decent neighborhoods in San Mateo starts at around $1.5M in the lowlands and much more in the highlands or hills.

I’d look in Burlingame, San Mateo, Foster City, Belmont, and San Carlos to be close to work.
I'm guessing that a sizeable % of the OP's total compensation comes from an annual bonus/stock payout. You can't really factor in the variable component of this into your monthly run rate until you've been able to manage this consistently for a couple years. Trust me, I've been through it.

Also, its important to note that with young kids, you have other very high expenses. You're probably looking at over $3k/month for both of them in daycare, unless this person's wife is staying home to care for them. Even without that, you have other high expenses around food, utilities, kids' sports/activities, 529 contributions, additional costs when traveling, etc.

Not saying this person is impoverished at all, but they indicated they wanted a high standard of living. Its not easy with that income on the peninsula.
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Old 05-27-2020, 09:40 AM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
1,525 posts, read 2,605,458 times
Reputation: 1943
With high school kids and wanting a short commute to San Mateo, I'd look in Belmont and Burlingame. Both have one high school (so no work checking addresses to make sure you are living in district for a particular school). Both have very good high schools and are nice areas to live. Expect to rent in the range of 6600-6900 or so for a 3-4 bedroom, 3 bath. There isn't very much available for rent at this time in those areas aside from the one listing another poster linked and this one in Burlingame (for 6900) https://sfbay.craigslist.org/pen/apa...128812779.html

Edited to add, Belmont will be less expensive than Burlingame. Millbrae is nice, too, and similar rents as Belmont (and excellent high school). https://sfbay.craigslist.org/pen/apa...126280821.html

Last edited by twins4lynn; 05-27-2020 at 09:48 AM..
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