Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

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nkotbbh
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Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by nkotbbh » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:26 pm

Like the title says I am thinking of moving either to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina from Southern California. I would like to know which state you recommend moving to and why. It will be my girl friend and 3 kids. My situation “catch 22” the house where we live in was bought for us by my parents in March of 2012 it is not paid for we have been paying for it ever since, the down payment was put down by my parents. The price was $340,000 the deposit was $130,000 the house is now worth $600,000 so the plan was to file a quit claim deed and put the house under our name might still might happen not sure depending on if/when we move. Now I am not sure but I “heard” if you have over $500,000 in equity you don’t have to pay back the remaining on the house either way if that is so great if not we were thinking of having my parents sell the house while at the same time they get their $130,000 loan back and we move out of state. With the remaining I was thinking of buying a house cash and invest the rest.
Background….
ME: Associates of Science in HVACR (Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning Refrigeration)
I no longer do HVACR it was during the recession and now I am in the Manufacturing Industry job title Machinist and have been doing it for a year now. Went through a 7 month schooling training program for Machinist.

HER: Bachelors in Business Administration
Currently works in a call center started off as an operator, then moved up to lead, supervisor, assistant manager and now currently the manager. Some of her expertise includes accounts management, product management, employee management, billing, quality management.

I would like to get your input as far as what you would do or recommend and also like I mentioned earlier what state and why. Any feedback would be highly appreciated thank you.

Thought I would add since many are asking.
Texas cities to live in I have only thought of 2 Houston and Austin. Do not want to have my house flooded. Still considering other cities but those 2 are the main ones.
Iowa - Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, Dyeresville, Dubuque.
Idaho - Im thinking Boise but all I hear is Boise nothing outside of that??
North Carolina - Yes Raleigh not sure what other cities would have to do my homework first and see what other cities.

As far as why I am looking to move from California, traffic is getting unbearable! cost of living and highest and most amount of taxes. And weather does not pay your bills I care more about making a living.
Last edited by nkotbbh on Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:32 pm, edited 2 times in total.

jbmitt
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by jbmitt » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:33 pm

That’s an interesting range of places. I’d suggest you look into the Des Moines, Iowa area. Unemployment is low, quality of life is good, taxes are higher than Texas but not awful. Politics are well.. you can look on your own.

There are a number of financial service and insurance companies with call center type operations, and there should be a number of opportunities for you.

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CaliJim
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by CaliJim » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:37 pm

WOW. quite a diverse list. you need to narrow things down a bit. what is important to you? climate? politics? shoveling snow? proximity to wallmart? cost of living? house cost $/sq ft? views? proximity to parks? proximity to relatives/family? Proximity to valley forge?

may be some good bargains coming on the market soon in NC. check for mold and water damage.
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bloom2708
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by bloom2708 » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:40 pm

Do some pre-visits. Probably in January/February. :shock:

Iowa weather will punch you in the face coming from So CA. :wink:

Iowa would be the biggest change. Texas heat/humidity. NC heat/humidity in the summers.

Weather isn't the only factor obviously. Moving 3 kids has its own consequences.

What is drawing you to each? Have you visited each state? Texas is huge, is there an area you are narrowing in on? Austin, Dallas, Houston?

The new issue of Money Magazine has the 50 best cities to live in list. Check it out. Frisco, TX is #1 this year if my memory serves me (suburb of Dallas). If you want to test the weather put Fargo, ND on your list. :o Lots of good jobs and low unemployment. Our weather makes Iowa seem like the deep south. Ha ha.

Will be interesting to see this thread unfold. Good luck on your decision.
Last edited by bloom2708 on Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:17 pm, edited 5 times in total.
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aida2003
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by aida2003 » Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:53 pm

Cities in NC have traffic issues. It's not LA, but I'm afraid we can start competing in this misery soon. I've noticed a trend that my commute time has been increasing 5 minutes a year for the last 3-4 years and this is because I leave the house earlier.
Summers are not super in NC cities either unless you enjoy the heat and humidity.
You must think/research schools for your kids.

PS.Your spouse's work history is interesting. Did she start as a CS operator after getting a BA? OTOH, it sounds she did well on her career path after that. You must start somewhere.

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Watty
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Watty » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:24 pm

nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:26 pm
My situation “catch 22” the house where we live in was bought for us by my parents in March of 2012 it is not paid for we have been paying for it ever since, the down payment was put down by my parents. The price was $340,000 the deposit was $130,000 the house is now worth $600,000 so the plan was to file a quit claim deed and put the house under our name might still might happen not sure depending on if/when we move. Now I am not sure but I “heard” if you have over $500,000 in equity you don’t have to pay back the remaining on the house either way if that is so great if not we were thinking of having my parents sell the house while at the same time they get their $130,000 loan back and we move out of state.
That sounds confusing and how the names are listed in the title could be very important so it would be good to get some professional tax advice on what what the situation is.

You are probably thinking of the "homeowners capital gains exemption"(Google this) but since you are single the limit would be $250K but that likely would not be a big deal since you would probably not have more capital gains than that after deducting the selling costs.

https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc701

Your state may have different capital gains tax laws so you could owe some state taxes.
nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:26 pm
I would like to get your input as far as what you would do or recommend and also like I mentioned earlier what state and why. Any feedback would be highly appreciated thank you.
I would take Idaho and Iowa off your list unless you both have good jobs lined up before you move there. They both have relatively small populations so there may be limited job opportunities. Both could be fine if you have jobs lined up.

Be sure to understand how much you will be paying in taxes in each of the states. The property taxes can be very high in Texas.

With three kids in the mix you might want to consider what the state colleges costs and scholarships are like since that can vary greatly. I'm in Georgia and there are lots of details but I know both Georgia and Tennessee use lottery money to provide scholarships to students that can keep a "B" average in college. I don't know if any of the states you are looking at have a similar program. Moving to a college town might allow you to save a lot by having the kids live at home when they are in college. If your girlfriend could get a job at a college she might be able to get a break on their tuition.

I would try to narrow it down to several cities then start looking for jobs to see where you can both find the best job.

theluckyone
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by theluckyone » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:26 pm

nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:26 pm
My situation “catch 22” the house where we live in was bought for us by my parents in March of 2012 it is not paid for we have been paying for it ever since, the down payment was put down by my parents. The price was $340,000 the deposit was $130,000 the house is now worth $600,000 so the plan was to file a quit claim deed and put the house under our name might still might happen not sure depending on if/when we move. Now I am not sure but I “heard” if you have over $500,000 in equity you don’t have to pay back the remaining on the house either way if that is so great if not we were thinking of having my parents sell the house while at the same time they get their $130,000 loan back and we move out of state. With the remaining I was thinking of buying a house cash and invest the rest.
I don't know where you heard this, but it's wrong. If a house has a remaining mortgage balance at the time of sale, the remaining balance must be paid, typically from the sale proceeds. The amount of equity doesn't matter.

GG1273
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by GG1273 » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:28 pm

Several of my wife's siblings and her parents moved to NC from NJ primarily to avoid cold winters.

In Laws lived in Southern Pines, not a lot of businesses there, mostly retail and golf-centric.

My brother in law lived in Greensboro area and recently retired from being a school teacher. He relocated closer to Charlotte this past year. I personally like the Raleigh area. Plenty of work in these economic times in Charlotte and Raleigh. Airport in Raleigh is just a few years old.

Property Taxes are super low but public schools are "meh" from what my brother in law reports

Good Luck with your decision!

jbmitt
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by jbmitt » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:32 pm

[/quote]
I would take Idaho and Iowa off your list unless you both have good jobs lined up before you move there. They both have relatively small populations so there may be limited job opportunities. Both could be fine if you have jobs lined up.
[/quote]

Are you serious? Those are two of the five lowest states for unemployment. Are you just shooting from the hip? Nothing that the OP posted would suggest that their employment needs are so specialized that Des Moines, Cedar Rapida, or Boise wouldn’t provide them with options.

https://www.bls.gov/web/laus/laumstrk.htm

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by AlphaLess » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:34 pm

nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:26 pm
.. but I “heard” if you have over $500,000 in equity you don’t have to pay back the remaining mortgage on the house
Wow. Nice trade. I would like to sign up for that trade.
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Watty
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Watty » Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:45 pm

jbmitt wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:32 pm
Are you serious? Those are two of the five lowest states for unemployment. Are you just shooting from the hip? Nothing that the OP posted would suggest that their employment needs are so specialized that Des Moines, Cedar Rapida, or Boise wouldn’t provide them with options.
The unemployment rate may be low but all those metro areas have populations of well less than a million people so that is a somewhat limited job market.

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ClevrChico
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by ClevrChico » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:09 pm

Iowa has been good to us. Des Moines is having a construction boom. It's a major insurance/banking center, so there's plenty of office jobs too.

The weather offers lots of variety. But if you love the outdoors, a winter hike, or a walk on a cool rainy day can be lovely.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Golf maniac » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:14 pm

I would focus on cities where you both could get good jobs. On the list should be Raleigh and Charlotte in N.C., Des Moines in Iowa, and Dallas or Houston in Texas. Those are the areas I know would have good opportunities for both you and you girlfriend ( not dissing other states). Then look at housing, taxes, schools and weather. Make your decision based on what city meets the most of what you and your girlfriend are looking for from the move.

nkotbbh
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by nkotbbh » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:30 pm

jbmitt wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:33 pm
That’s an interesting range of places. I’d suggest you look into the Des Moines, Iowa area. Unemployment is low, quality of life is good, taxes are higher than Texas but not awful. Politics are well.. you can look on your own.

There are a number of financial service and insurance companies with call center type operations, and there should be a number of opportunities for you.
Thanks will consider.

nkotbbh
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by nkotbbh » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:31 pm

CaliJim wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:37 pm
WOW. quite a diverse list. you need to narrow things down a bit. what is important to you? climate? politics? shoveling snow? proximity to wallmart? cost of living? house cost $/sq ft? views? proximity to parks? proximity to relatives/family? Proximity to valley forge?

may be some good bargains coming on the market soon in NC. check for mold and water damage.
I can kind of care less about weather as that does not pay your bills I just care about making a living.

nkotbbh
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by nkotbbh » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:35 pm

bloom2708 wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:40 pm
Do some pre-visits. Probably in January/February. :shock:

Iowa weather will punch you in the face coming from So CA. :wink:

Iowa would be the biggest change. Texas heat/humidity. NC heat/humidity in the summers.

Weather isn't the only factor obviously. Moving 3 kids has its own consequences.

What is drawing you to each? Have you visited each state? Texas is huge, is there an area you are narrowing in on? Austin, Dallas, Houston?

The new issue of Money Magazine has the 50 best cities to live in list. Check it out. Frisco, TX is #1 this year if my memory serves me (suburb of Dallas). If you want to test the weather put Fargo, ND on your list. :o Lots of good jobs and low unemployment. Our weather makes Iowa seem like the deep south. Ha ha.

Will be interesting to see this thread unfold. Good luck on your decision.
Cool sounds good but honestly I could care less about the weather as long as I can live. Ill definitely check out Fargo ND and Frisco Tx

nkotbbh
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by nkotbbh » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:36 pm

aida2003 wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:53 pm
Cities in NC have traffic issues. It's not LA, but I'm afraid we can start competing in this misery soon. I've noticed a trend that my commute time has been increasing 5 minutes a year for the last 3-4 years and this is because I leave the house earlier.
Summers are not super in NC cities either unless you enjoy the heat and humidity.
You must think/research schools for your kids.

PS.Your spouse's work history is interesting. Did she start as a CS operator after getting a BA? OTOH, it sounds she did well on her career path after that. You must start somewhere.
Yes thanks she has climbed up the ladder slowly.

nkotbbh
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by nkotbbh » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:39 pm

Watty wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 8:24 pm
nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:26 pm
My situation “catch 22” the house where we live in was bought for us by my parents in March of 2012 it is not paid for we have been paying for it ever since, the down payment was put down by my parents. The price was $340,000 the deposit was $130,000 the house is now worth $600,000 so the plan was to file a quit claim deed and put the house under our name might still might happen not sure depending on if/when we move. Now I am not sure but I “heard” if you have over $500,000 in equity you don’t have to pay back the remaining on the house either way if that is so great if not we were thinking of having my parents sell the house while at the same time they get their $130,000 loan back and we move out of state.
That sounds confusing and how the names are listed in the title could be very important so it would be good to get some professional tax advice on what what the situation is.

You are probably thinking of the "homeowners capital gains exemption"(Google this) but since you are single the limit would be $250K but that likely would not be a big deal since you would probably not have more capital gains than that after deducting the selling costs.

https://www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc701

Your state may have different capital gains tax laws so you could owe some state taxes.
nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:26 pm
I would like to get your input as far as what you would do or recommend and also like I mentioned earlier what state and why. Any feedback would be highly appreciated thank you.
I would take Idaho and Iowa off your list unless you both have good jobs lined up before you move there. They both have relatively small populations so there may be limited job opportunities. Both could be fine if you have jobs lined up.

Be sure to understand how much you will be paying in taxes in each of the states. The property taxes can be very high in Texas.

With three kids in the mix you might want to consider what the state colleges costs and scholarships are like since that can vary greatly. I'm in Georgia and there are lots of details but I know both Georgia and Tennessee use lottery money to provide scholarships to students that can keep a "B" average in college. I don't know if any of the states you are looking at have a similar program. Moving to a college town might allow you to save a lot by having the kids live at home when they are in college. If your girlfriend could get a job at a college she might be able to get a break on their tuition.

I would try to narrow it down to several cities then start looking for jobs to see where you can both find the best job.
The title is not under my/our name it is under my parents name so I will either tell them to sell or if it gets put under our name we will sell. But yes work will be first as we plan on moving with a job already.

nkotbbh
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by nkotbbh » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:41 pm

ClevrChico wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:09 pm
Iowa has been good to us. Des Moines is having a construction boom. It's a major insurance/banking center, so there's plenty of office jobs too.

The weather offers lots of variety. But if you love the outdoors, a winter hike, or a walk on a cool rainy day can be lovely.
Here is what scares me about iowa there was just a tornado and roof's were being blown off.

regularguy455
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by regularguy455 » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:49 pm

OP, I think you need to consider culture fit. I’ve seen folks move to Raleigh that loved it or hated it. Any of those cities will be VERY different than California.

trueblueky
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by trueblueky » Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:58 pm

For the children, Iowa. Much better schools.

Charlieville
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Charlieville » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:03 pm

I recommend Des Moines or the Cedar Rapids/Iowa City area. I have lived in both areas. Great place to raise a family. Good public schools. Fairly cheap housing especially if you are coming from California. Traffic is bearable and the economy is strong. These two areas do not fit the farm stereotype.

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Watty
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Watty » Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:33 pm

nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:39 pm
The title is not under my/our name it is under my parents name so I will either tell them to sell or if it gets put under our name we will sell. But yes work will be first as we plan on moving with a job already.
Be sure to get tax advice before you do anything, there are lots of details in qualifying for the homeowners capital gains exemption.

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MP123
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by MP123 » Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:10 pm

Texas has no state income tax. Your other three choices also have their advantages depending on what you're looking for.

What part of California are you coming from?

If you haven't already you should check out city-data.com forums.

MJS
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by MJS » Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:39 pm

You, your gf, (and any kid who can) would learn a lot about different places by playing with https://teleport.org/welcome It lets you select the stuff that matters to you, then narrows it down.

treadingwater
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by treadingwater » Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:13 am

Iowa has a 9% state income tax. Texas has none.

DarthSage
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by DarthSage » Wed Oct 03, 2018 6:10 am

We moved to North Carolina, 3 years ago. I can't speak to the other three places, except I recommend visiting, if possible, to draw your own conclusions.

NC is a big, diverse state--much to love in every area. Raleigh and Charlotte are huge--Charlotte is growing rapidly, but also housing costs are going up with the growth. OTOH, you would be able to find work easily. The "smaller" cities, like Asheville, Greenville, have their own pros/cons--if you like the outdoors, there are plenty of options with good parks, mountain trails, beaches, etc. nearby.

We live coastal, and our city got slammed in the hurricane (as in, Flo made landfall 10 miles from our house). Our neighborhood sustained tree damage/power lines down, but was mostly intact--other neighborhoods fared much worse. Flooding from the rivers was a much bigger problem than the actual storm hit. Here in Wilmington, there's been a TON of growth--not like Charlotte, which is a major city, but I've been surprised by the amount of construction, just in the time we've been here. We don't find taxes to be excessive (although any amount is too much, IMHO).

As far as schools go, NC has full school choice. Every county has at least one "early college" HS, where students complete an associate's alongside their HS diploma. My kids have the choice of 8(!!!) public high schools, each with a different focus--2 are Early College, then there's a Vo-tech, one with a STEM focus, Marine Biology, an IB program, and one with a more creative type curriculum. Sorry, I forgot the last. My DD15 went the IB route, which happens to be our home district, while DS12 may choose the STEM route. Obviously, smaller counties would have fewer choices, but there's something for everyone. VPS--Virtual Public School--is also big, so even small, remote schools have access to a plethora of choices--DD15 is currently taking an Honors Forensic Science course online--and the class continued, even throughout the hurricane shutdown (schools have been closed, they reopen tomorrow, not that I'm eager...).

We get one week of winter here. Seriously. I own a winter coat because I moved down from New England. I've never worn it here. My older son wears shorts/sandals year-round. He gets funny looks in Jan., but he won't freeze.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 6:31 am

Absolutely visit where ever sticks on your list. The weather and natural disaster potential is all over the map with your picks. You'd fit fine culturally in Cary, just outside Raleigh (City of All Retired Yankees). But you'll also find the traffic to be familiar with southern CA. Depends where you live and where you need to get and when. My wife and I spent a lot of time looking at the Raleigh area for a work relocation and one thing we did find was that the infrastructure planning was better than anywhere else we've been. I also covered the area for work (why the opportunity was there) and would notice 3 lane roads in each direction in the middle of nowhere and with no traffic. A year later, it would seem like a mall, restaurants, businesses and neighborhoods just popped out of the ground. Since I covered the southeast, it was a stark difference from the Atlanta area where the same kind of construction would rely on the same single lane cow path.
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quantAndHold
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by quantAndHold » Wed Oct 03, 2018 6:33 am

Where is your extended family at? Don’t underestimate being close to family if you’ve never lived away from them.

Have you been to any of those places? Have you been to any of them during the worst times of year for weather? Weather in other places can kind of be a rude awake awakening for a Californian.

Have you really looked at what the traffic is like in those places? Several of those places have traffic of their own.

Have you checked what YOUR tax situation would be in each of those places? Every state is different in how much tax it collects for various things, and every state has to collect money to run the state, so just knowing what the income tax is, or even the overall tax burden is won’t be all that useful to you. For example, when we lived in WA, there was no income tax, but property tax was double what we paid in CA, sales tax was over 10%, and among other super high fees, driver’s licenses were $80. When I retired, it was cheaper to move back to California. Property tax in TX is in the 4% range. CA is actually the middle of the pack as far as total tax burden.

Have you checked what the job opportunities would be in those places for your career paths? You should be able to eliminate a couple that way.

Have you checked into doing the things you like to do outside of work? Can you do them? Can you do them as much as you want?

Have you checked the culture of each of the places?

We tried the grass is greener someplace else thing, hated it, and moved back.

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burt
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by burt » Wed Oct 03, 2018 6:40 am

You mentioned that traffic was becoming unbearable in your current location.
If that's the case, you will want to avoid Houston.

burt

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by yohac » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:07 am

nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:31 pm
I can kind of care less about weather as that does not pay your bills I just care about making a living.
I'm sure you mean that, but having grown up in Iowa, a Californian can't really comprehend an Iowa winter. Having to get up and go to work in the dark, in the middle of a blizzard. Driving on icy roads covered by snow. Maybe I'm not remembering exactly but it seemed like weeks would go by where it never got above freezing. Get into February and people are just depressed, as the cold just drags on and on. Iowa has much to recommend it, but don't underestimate the climate issue.

And as others have said, also don't underestimate the psychological impact of tearing up roots and moving to a new place where you know absolutely no one. If you're an extravert and make friends easily, maybe you'll have no problem. But I sure as hell did.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by livesoft » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:13 am

^It's only worse in Idaho. :)
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by sillysaver » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:18 am

nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:26 pm
Texas cities to live in I have only thought of 2 Houston and Austin. Do not want to have my house flooded. Still considering other cities but those 2 are the main ones.
Austin has become too crowded because of migration (from places like California). Traffic and cost of housing have become big problems.

RickBoglehead
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by RickBoglehead » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:30 am

There are multiple websites that discuss things like tax rates, demographics, level of education, etc.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by carolinaman » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:37 am

Charlotte and Raleigh are the 2 largest cities in NC and both have been prospering and growing at a rapid rate for a long time. Both have their share of traffic problems but nothing like Southern California. NC has a flat rate for state income tax: 5.49% with very few deductions. The weather is nice except for the hot humid days of July and August. People complain the heat and humidity but it has never bothered me much. I am active outdoors year round at age 74. Also, our humidity is not nearly as bad as the coast or Florida.

Both cities have a lot to offer. Charlotte is 2 hours from the mountains and 3.5 hours to the coast. Raleigh is further to the mountains but closer to the coast. Charlotte has a NFL team, the Panthers, and a NBA team, the Hornets. Raleigh has a NHL team and also has 3 major universities for college sports. There should be good job opportunities in both areas. I recommend that you visit sometime to get a feel for both areas. Greensboro and Winston Salem are mid sized cities that you also may want to check out.

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FlyAF
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by FlyAF » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:45 am

You say that you don't care about weather, but then mention that you don't want your house flooded. That could rule out places like Houston, and where did that last hurricane hit the other week? That's right, NC. You also mention tornadoes, and yep, TX has those too, among many other types of severe weather. Saying that you don't care about the weather is truly spoken by someone who hasn't spent a summer in Houston or a winter in Iowa/Idaho, three places I could NEVER live. Austin has major traffic issues and the COL has skyrocketed in the last decade. I live in DFW and while you can make a fortune and live cheap, it's a boring and superficial place to live with no culture and no identity. I would do your research and not make an impulsive decision. For me personally, off of your list, I'd choose NC and cross off just about every other option you listed. Actually, I'd choose Austin, but you'd just be trading for a different kind of miserable traffic and COL and worse weather.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by quantAndHold » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:47 am

yohac wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:07 am
nkotbbh wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:31 pm
I can kind of care less about weather as that does not pay your bills I just care about making a living.
I'm sure you mean that, but having grown up in Iowa, a Californian can't really comprehend an Iowa winter. Having to get up and go to work in the dark, in the middle of a blizzard. Driving on icy roads covered by snow. Maybe I'm not remembering exactly but it seemed like weeks would go by where it never got above freezing. Get into February and people are just depressed, as the cold just drags on and on. Iowa has much to recommend it, but don't underestimate the climate issue.
On the flip side, one of the theories for why obesity rates are higher in the South is because of the weather. The combination of heat and humidity makes it too hot to get any meaningful exercise outdoors for several months per year in large parts of the South. There are reasons to love the South, but the weather is pretty horrible a lot of the year.

One last thing, then I’ll shut up...we’re in the middle of spending several months traveling around the United States. I never really thought about how much it freaking rains in other places. A Southern Californian can’t really comprehend that until they experience it.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Novajen » Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:36 am

NC, especially the Raleigh area, is a great place to live and raise kids. I grew up in Wilmington and my folks moved to the Raleigh area (Holly Springs/Apex) in 1996 and lived there until 2015. Nice COL, lots of job opportunities, fairly diverse population and great schools. Raleigh is about 2 1/2 hours from the beach (Wilmington) and 3 or so from the mountains.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:03 am

I'd think about the taxes from the house. Since your parents own it and don't live in it, they wouldn't qualify for the capital gain exemption. If they quitclaim it to you, gift taxes may apply.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by onthecusp » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:11 am

livesoft wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:13 am
^It's only worse in Idaho. :)
What's wrong with Idaho? I'm considering it for retirement from Texas so was hoping for an upgrade! :P

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by livesoft » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:40 am

Idaho is great, but in the context of winters in Iowa, you should know what I mean.
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by LawEgr1 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:51 am

Hi! Great list, I love the variety.

I grew up in Iowa, in the exact NE town you have listed that starts with a D. I do not recommend it and I firmly believe it's the worst choice you have on your list. I also spent a ton of time in Iowa City. I would recommend Iowa City - lovely area, U of Iowa nearby, relatively low cost of living with an educated populace that is more on the left leaning side / open. It is small, however, and could get tiresome after awhile. I also think Des Moines is a nice metro area and largely overlooked. Similar to Iowa City, easy to get around, LCOL, amenities are decent and >>larger than IC. However, with Iowa comes old man winter. That CANNOT be understated as someone who is from SoCal. I would imagine you would nope outta there in a heartbeat after a year or two...maybe not though.

I cannot vouch for Texas or Idaho.

We've considered NC triangle and Charlotte and have spent a good amount of time in both. I think Charlotte is a very nice area that fit (would fit) us better than the Triangle. Charlotte certainly had a more metro feel to it, Raleigh had better job opportunities and felt more suburban overall. Would recommend a quick visit to both. Weather is certainly an upgrade from Iowa, IMO and while it gets cool in those areas I do not think it would be something that would deter SoCalians from staying put long term. It will rain, but that's a different and milder beast than a true winter.

Not sure if Phoenix is on your list, but between keeping similar weather and having an HVAC background, combined with lower COL sounds like it might fit on the surface.

Good luck with your decision and let us know where you end up!

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by chickadee » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:59 am

Austin has an affordability problem and traffic is no bueno. But unemployment is at 3%, so we need workers. I’d also look at a Houston or Dallas burb. The price you pay for a good economy is often traffic.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by sunny_socal » Wed Oct 03, 2018 10:31 am

I can speak to this, moved from San Diego to Austin. (I may need my head examined for doing this move, I greatly prefer SD! :beer )

Anyway.

Austin - the good
- Jobs, jobs, jobs. Clearly this place is growing, construction is everywhere.
- The food is great! Especially BBQ, Oh my. (Exception is Mexican food)
- It actually rains!
- There are lots of trees
- There are a few hills, lots of streams, creeks, rivers, lakes
- Adequate outdoor recreation
- Decent local wine industry
- The people are very nice. Everyone says "yes sir", even the youngsters.
- Schools are very good! Our new HS is definitely better than even our private school in CA.
- No state tax
- Cost of utilities is lower than CA
- Auto registration is much lower than CA (eg. for 4 vehicles it was $1600/year, now $250/year)

Austin - the not as good
- There's no real Mexican food here, 99% of it is "tex-mex" (think cheese from a can.) Locals will get offended if you knock it, but the tex-mex is terrible. (Brisket in a taco?) You can find the good MX but it's an effort
- It's humid, seemingly all the time. If you sit still in the shade it's fine but if you're active, you'll sweat.
- Traffic can be bad. No worse the SoCal, but the infrastructure here can't handle any more people. The freeways are 2 lanes each way, compared to 6-10 lanes each way in CA. Freeway merge ramps are one lane. (Evenings/weekends are ok) Up in the northern part of the city they have some nice new toll roads that are ok but it will cost you.
- Politics are much like San Francisco. Probably only about 5% of the people are actually locals, everyone is a transplant. (Today's news: Austin restaurants are not allowed to throw away old food)
- Cost of living much higher than I would have expected! Houses are not cheap. Less than CA however.
- Food tends to be expensive, and there are fewer "hole-in-the-wall" spots compared to CA
- Far less opportunity for outdoor activities compared t oCA. No mountains unless you drive for two days or fly.
- Far less beer, and the beer is not as good as CA. The best beer is imported from CA.
- Property taxes are high, 2-3%, and change annually

EDIT: Added taxes
Last edited by sunny_socal on Wed Oct 03, 2018 1:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by sailaway » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:00 am

Why not apply for jobs in each state and make your decision once you are comparing job offers, as well as locations?

For the new Austin transplant, not sure how you are missing out on the hole in the wall places, they are definitely there! But having moved the opposite direction, SD wins on weather, for sure. It has been five years and I still don't have anything close to my Austin social network, though.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Wilderness Librarian » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:19 am

livesoft wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:40 am
Idaho is great, but in the context of winters in Iowa, you should know what I mean.
Several points related to this whole discussion.

I grew up in Idaho but have lived in several other states throughout my life. Retired and moved back. All of the places you mention have hot summers and some for extended periods of time. Yes Boise is very hot too and I would not care to live there for that reason. In addition Iowa has extremes - hot humid summers, cold windy winters nice but short falls, spring even shorter. I lived in Ames Iowa for 3 years as an adult and very recently Fairbanks Alaska for 18. I would take the winters in Fairbanks over Iowa without any hesitation whatever (the wind is a big factor). In my section of Idaho the winters are not harsh ( often freeze thaw snow and melt a few days latter) For my tastes they are actually too mild.

Not sure of your employment opportunities. Others can speak better to that. I doubt there is one significant metro area in the country that doesn't have major traffic problems. So pick your place and try to live as close to work as you can possibly afford. I did not try to follow your financial points. But as a general matter I think it is counterproductive to try to secure tax advantages of one sort or another. You should live where you can achieve a comfortable balance point between work and life style.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by goldensam » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:31 am

I live in Houston. I moved here for work without knowing much about it, and for the most part, I absolutely hate it here. The local economy is good, the food is awesome, and there is lots of diversity, which I like, but the traffic is a nightmare and the weather and mosquitos are so bad that I am unable to really go outside more than absolutely necessary for several months of the year. I know you say the weather isn't a big deal to you but you should know exactly how bad our summers are before you commit. Our high today is 89. With the heat and humidity, it says it currently feels like it is 96. At 11:30AM in October!

We are considering a move to Austin in the near future, but eventually will leave Texas altogether.

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Hayden
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Hayden » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:42 am

Idaho is great, don't rule it out. And there is more to Idaho than Boise.

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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by livesoft » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:43 am

goldensam wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:31 am
I live in Houston. .... Our high today is 89. With the heat and humidity, it says it currently feels like it is 96. At 11:30AM in October!
Yes, it is refreshingly cool today. That rain that moved through yesterday has really dropped the temps.
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Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Post by Glockenspiel » Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:12 pm

bloom2708 wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 7:40 pm
If you want to test the weather put Fargo, ND on your list. :o Lots of good jobs and low unemployment. Our weather makes Iowa seem like the deep south. Ha ha.
Fargo is a great town with lots of jobs, high standard of living, but you will be in for a major cultural and weather shock, coming from California. I went to college in Fargo, and think of a very strong cold wind blowing across the prairie in the middle of January when it's 10 above to -10 below zero WITHOUT including the wind chill. The summers are glorious, however, and Fargo is very close to Lake Country in Minnesota.

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