Do you recommend relocating to San Diego?

Jun 21st, 2002, 08:05 AM
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We live on the Central Coast of California now. Where the weather is better than San Diego, no traffic, better air quality, clean beaches and a much less pretentious crowd. We left SD last year . . . and not a moment too soon.
Jun 21st, 2002, 08:17 AM
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Note to Annabelle: you live in Detroit.
Anywhere in the US will be a step up (OK, maybe Gary and E St Louis would be lateral moves).
San Diego is crazy expensive and crowded.
Have you considered anyplace else which is more liveable?
Jun 21st, 2002, 11:17 AM
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Jen it sounds like you made a great choice if you moved up to the San Luis Obispo/Morro Bay area. I just hope you were able to buy before the real estate prices really sk-rocketed!
Jun 21st, 2002, 11:37 AM
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I'm a San Diego native but have lived all over the world and in the US since after high school. I'm 40 and have always wanted to come back and finally did 5 years ago. I wouldn't want to live anywhere else.
weather, outdoor activities, low crime rate compared to other large cities, good selection of ethnic foods and restaurants
traffic - housing costs and rent depending where you decide to live. Doesn't have the quality live performances as NY, Chicago, Philadelphia, LA, SF but better than most. State taxes are probably higher than Michigan - you may want to check this.

Your life is what you make it here. You can have fun here an enjoy yourself for as many years as you choose (you can slways go back) or you can complain about everything in the cons section and wish you didn't come. You'd be surprised how much the weather and the amount of activities can affect your pysche. You are both young - just do it.
Jun 21st, 2002, 03:22 PM
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I am the opposite. I am a native to San Diego. Several years after high school I moved to the Philadelphia suburbs. I didn't like it at first, now I like the East Coast, I love the change of Seasons. I think we can be happy wherever we choose to live. It is such a personal choice dependant on many different factors. I suppose I would just do what my heart told me to do.
Jun 27th, 2002, 06:53 PM
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Having grown up in SD in the late 70's and early 80's, I love the place. But, now that I'm married with 2 kids, I'll never move back (live in suburban Dallas now). I love to visit, but the place has become the classic example of urban sprawl, clogged freeways, expensive housing, lousy school system (teacher's strikes, etc.). Private schools are the ONLY way I'd move there with kids, so add another $10-20K a year per kid for that. The illegal immigration problem is very real, being on the border, and that has contributed to SD having one fo the fastest growing crime rates in the country.

On the plus side - great weather (except if you're even just 15 miles inland, it climbs to the high 90's every summer day), lot's of fun in the sun, water, etc. On the down side - ridculously high housing, ever-growing population, crowded freeways, urban sprawl taking over everywhere, poor schools, air and water quality is deteriorating, so-so economy. Also, being in the very SW corner of the US, EVERYWHERE else is far away. Like the saying goes - it's a great place to visit (and I do) but I wouldn't want to live there - not these days.
Jun 27th, 2002, 08:17 PM
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My husband and I moved to SD from Cincinnati 5 years ago, and I hope we never have to leave. The truth about housing is this, we bought our house in Rancho Penasquitos, a very nice inland suburb, about 30 minutes from everything (airport, downtown, SeaWorld, zoo, beach) It does not get into the high 90's all summer at my house. Our house is 3BR, 2BA with a decent sized yard (disappointing compared to midwest standards, but nice for out here) it cost us $229,000 then, now it is worth about $350,000 in 4 years. We lived in an apartment for a year first, which was 1.5 times what we paid in Cincy. Also, we live in the Poway School District, one of the top in the state. We have a 2 yo, who isn't quite ready for school, but it was a plus for us when we chose the house. The traffic can be a problem, you just deal with it and get used to it. I can get to shopping and restaurants without getting on the freeway, but the freeway is often easier. Other than rush hours, I travel easily on the freeways. The weather is spectacular. If you want winter, go to Big Bear and ski, only 2 1/2 hrs away. You want more summer in the winter, go to Palm Springs, 2 1/2 hrs away.
Do find jobs first. There isn't much cost of living increase out here. I had a job as an A/R accountant, only making $24K, same as midwest.
It is a fantastic place to live.
Jun 27th, 2002, 09:04 PM
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I've lived in San Diego for 15 years and I hope never to live anywhere else. I live in Cardiff, (North County Coastal) where the schools are very good. I agree the traffic can be a nightmare, but since I'm from L.A. originally, this growth still doesn't compare. I love the proximity to other areas, Your a couple of hours from the desert or the mountains. We have cultural arts, nightlife, wonderful parks and beaches.
The cost of living is a bit ridiculous, but I'm just used to it. Obviously San Diego isn't for everyone, (thank goodness)but I think if you've visited and loved it, you would have a great time here.
Jun 28th, 2002, 07:53 AM
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Hi everyone:
I really appreciate all the feedback! To answer some of your additional questions about us and what we're looking for:
We are "DINK's" for now but that will change at some point. We hope to start a family in 3-5 years or so. We currently rent an apartment - 1100 sq. ft., 2 BD, 2 Bath in Ann Arbor for $895 a month (even for here, this is somewhat of a steal, so I know we'll be in for sticker shock when looking at comparable places in SD!) We're hesitant to buy a house out here even though it's better than throwing away money on rent every month, because we are committed to moving out of state within the next 2 years. We've both lived in the Midwest our entire lives - my husband in various parts of Michigan, myself in Chicago then Detroit and Ann Arbor. Granted, as many of you have said, moving virtually anywhere would be a step up from Detroit! We have considered other warm locales with more reasonable costs of living (Florida; Texas) but SD is still at the top of our list for a few reasons:
-Perfect weather (not as humid as FL and TX) which I think would make the Quality of Life issues outweigh the Cost of Living ones.....
-We encountered just the NICEST people when we were there and were extremely comfortable with the diversity. We are an inter-ethnic couple and place a lot of value on living in a diverse community.
-Far away from east coast and Europe, yes, but closer to HI and Asia, which is where we'd like to focus our future travels (we're trying to get the Caribbean and Europe-trotting thing out of our systems in these years of being DINKs...)

Truth be told, we do have some concerns. We'd be moving far away from our immediate families here in the midwest - though the ones we're closest to have indicated that they would be open to relocating as well if things go well for us out there! We've heard some things about California culture being ultra-liberal - we're both liberal for Midwesterners but sometimes wonder if any of that would bother us... And that's about it. I'm relatively confident that we could find employment, and we certainly wouldn't make the move until we did (or at least one of us did anyway.)
Any further comments and insights are welcome!
Jun 28th, 2002, 09:17 AM
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You're likely going to be looking at 1-1/2 to 2 times that rent for a nice place that would be comparable. A mortgage payment would be significantly higher.

You also have to realize that jobs are limited, so you might be both facing some grueling commute time if you can't find employment close to each other.

"Quality of Life issues outweigh the Cost of Living" - but if you don't have any discretionary income at the end of the month, your quality of life will be pretty dismal.

Your relatives might be saying that they're willing to relocate, but is that realistic? Are they willing or able to sell their homes and move out only to find that they're going to have to take on a mortgage twice the size? How about the higher taxes that they may be facing?

I don't mean to sound so negative, but I've been there myself. I'm currently looking at moving so that I can afford a home. I'm college educated with an MBA and have a job that pays $70,000. But with high rent and a higher cost of goods down here, I really can't save a lot for a home. I have a downpayment of $50,000 saved, but that's just not enough with condo prices over $300,000. Time for me to grow up and move on where I can afford a grown up life.

Good luck in your quest for a place to settle.
Jun 30th, 2002, 09:22 AM
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Being DINKs gives you an economic advantage that single people don't have. Being young also helps because you have career potential and there is a lot here. I am also part of a mixed raced marriage and the west coast especially SD, LA and SF is one of the few places (other than NYC) that we don't stick out at all and receive no stares.
Jun 30th, 2002, 09:43 AM
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I lived in SD county most of my life. Owned a home in Carlsbad that was 5 bedrooms and in a great neighborhood. We ended up moving and sold our house for less then we bought it for in 96. Then the real estate market wasn't as hot as it is now. At that point we had 2 kids and made about 82,000 a year and were living paycheck to paycheck with me staying home and no daycare to pay. The cost of just utilities is SUPER high. I lived about a mile and a half from the beach and almost never went. Pollution and cold water being the reasons. I did end up moving to the north in Riverside and bought a home twice as nice for half of what it would cost to buy my old home back. My husband also found a job that pays twice as much as what he was making for the exact same postition in SD. The traffic on the freeways is still awful but not around town. It was taking me 20 minutes to get 4 miles to the grocery store in Carlsbad.
So I guess I would tell you no not to move there. IF you moved there or bought a house more the 5 years ago sure your in a great postition. But there is nothing worse then being house poor IMO. Working just to pay the house payment is no way to live.

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