Looking for cheap cost of living with a strong economy (1 Viewer)

Hudson

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Norcal
I'm probably ending the end of my shoulder injury soon and have some savings but not as much as I'd like.

I need to find a place that you can get a place and job that actually pays the cost of living in the area.

The problem im running into is the fact that im going to have a weight limit when this injury is over and won't be able to lift more than 25lbs with one arm so it is going to limit me in the field I've been in for a decade. Its so dam expensive to live in California these days as a renter im seeing this as a reason I probably have to migrate somewhere.

So I figure you have all been to many places (so have i, but behind the wheel of a semi truck).

Is there anywhere in this country where the cost of living isn't out of control and there's actual work?

I got my place cheap in the foothills but there really isn't any work nearby even for a veteran. They talk alot of talk about getting veterans jobs but thats like home depot kinda stuff which im not knocking it but your not gonna afford to live in norcal working for minimum wage. It just isnt possible.

So I figure id ask people for advice. Do you know any reasonable places? I want to stay in norcal but the cost of living is just ridiculous. My 20 year old car and 20 year old truck are just too dam expensive to register in this state. Its all taxes and 1400/month for a one bedroom. I dont understand how people afford it.
 
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Matt Derrick

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austin texas always seems flush with jobs of all kinds. especially in the service industry or the tech industry, but overall there seems to be no shortage of jobs here, including smaller craigslist gigs and whatnot.

the housing market is a bit fucked though. kinda expensive rent. 2 times i spent camping in the woods for about 6 months a piece and just biking to town and pocketing all the money i was making and that worked out pretty well.
 

Maki40

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I worked as a flagger over the summer. They gave me a free place to stay, like super upscale, hot tub, sauna, ect. and the easiest job in the world. Literally, just hold a sign all day. Had no bills and made bank. This was in Colorado so, I just got high as fuck all day and held a sign. Lots of work out there, just have to get after it.
 
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Hudson

Hudson

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Norcal
austin texas always seems flush with jobs of all kinds. especially in the service industry or the tech industry, but overall there seems to be no shortage of jobs here, including smaller craigslist gigs and whatnot.

the housing market is a bit fucked though. kinda expensive rent. 2 times i spent camping in the woods for about 6 months a piece and just biking to town and pocketing all the money i was making and that worked out pretty well.

Yeah the cost of living is the reason im looking at migrating. I have about 10k saved and "possibly a settlement down the road because of my injuries"; which to me feels like alot but in reality its not. Especially in this dreaded state.

My life is here in California but I truly don't feel like its a life to hold onto. Got my girlfriend who is a homeowner that doesn't want me staying with her; two friends and my family. So I am stuck in a rough position. Worst part is I own a house outright in Washington but where its at there's no work so I'm renting it out and just having the money get put in an account.


I looked at Texas, but I'm not sure I can handle the desert lol. I guess I got options but really dont know where to go.

So far im thinking im probably gonna rent a room from someone and start looking for work. Just dont want to do that here in California because I know where it ends up at. The ceiling for being independent in this state is too high.
 
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Hudson

Hudson

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How do you live in the woods and shower and use a bathroom and all that stuff?
 
D

Deleted member 20

I deleted myself
It seems that @Hudson is struggling with some real luxury problems. $10k in savings (2) 20 year old vehicles + a paid off house in another state. While you think you need a relocation (& maybe you do), perhaps you should consider simplifying & consolidating some? I have no idea what the equity/value of this house is in the Washington state is but it is worth something. The combination of resources that you have should have built you a life for you that makes you content. Perhaps the problem isn't in having enough resources or being in a strong economy at all?

Why own a house that you do not live in?
Why have a gf who you can't stay with?
Why have 2 vehicles? Especially those that were built in 1999 or so but too expensive to register/insure both??
Why have the $10k saved?

Could you consolidate & simplify everything down to that which is needed to build your new happy life. What kind of work do you do? I see that you drove a truck? Can we gather that you also have a CDL Class A license? Will the injury prohibit you passing future medical exams for the CDL? In your avatar you are wearing a motorcycle helmet? Do you have a bike too? If so then I am starting to get envious. I do finally have the life that I want; it was very similar to the life I had before but with some amendments, mostly philosophical really. So I have experienced many of the same feelings around many of these topics.

Its all taxes and 1400/month for a one bedroom. I don't understand how people afford it.
They can't. They are called the working poor & these issues are not specific to NORCAL. I bet the majority work just enough to survive, saving little; credit cards maxed & without $10k in the bank The thing is, one can't have their cake & eat too, every time. For cheap rent seek out high crime areas and places not so overcrowded and desirable. There are places all around the US that could hypothetically fit all of your criteria.

If the house ain't being lived in (By you) then, sell it & free up the capital. If you are considering relocating, multiple states away then, most likely the GF isn't coming with. If both vehicles are too pricey to insure then sell them & use your current nest egg of $10k to purchase a motorhome/bus to live out while you test how the verdant grass actually is over on the proverbial other sides. Going around renting rooms & looking for work to find that perfect place to relocate might be a big waste of time & energy. Having the equity, liquid would help facilitate the establishing of meaningful roots when ready while not having to worry about managing all of which that is not currently producing joy for you ATM.

If I had a DL, was a homeowner, had decent credit & $10k in the bank while having a tepid GF: I think it would be easier to build my dream life. (IMO) The potential win fall of any future settlement will just further entrench you in the fruitless life that you already have. Perhaps then if you were to consolidate your assets & efforts you could better double down on staying in NORCAL after exploring your options.

 
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OP
Hudson

Hudson

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Norcal
The house was left to me when my mom passed; my sister is too incompetent to manage it so im renting it out to a family member and giving her half the proceeds and putting the rest away for repairs and taxes. The place honestly needs alot of tlc.

The savings is basically the accumulation of about 3 years of hard work (about 70 hours week in rain/snow/ 120 degree heat). Isn't what I made but is what I was able to save while driving a 20 year old car worth about 200$

Honestly though 10k isn't much in California. Maybe 3 months worth of bills for an average one bedroom apartment.

And yeah im getting rid of the bike come spring probably because it isn't for me. I dont think its luxury really what im dealing with. I've saved that money by starving and doing nothing but play computer games for almost five years.

I might be able to drive after my injury but as it stands i truly dont feel safe driving 40 tons down the interstate for 14 hours when my arm screams at me driving my little tiny pos car for 3 hours.

Its all perspective really. But the RV idea is a good one. Thanks for that.

Is northern nevada affordable?
 

Mongo

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Is northern nevada affordable?
If you're looking to rent and work near norcal, carson city has 2 bedroom places that are between 800- 900 and there are a decent amount of jobs. I have a friend who moved there and got a job fabricating light up commercial signs and another job a couple weeks later putting together tiny slot cars but apparently the owner of that shop had unreal expectations.

I grew up in norcal and moved to Cleveland about 2 years ago because I knew there was no future for me in Cali. When I landed in Cleveland I got a efficiency place for 325. There are a ton of jobs but with the 25lb limit that strikes out a ton of them. It's Mostly factory work, but it seems like employers can't find people who are willing to be sober at work.

The RV is a pretty good idea though. Especially since there is tons of BLM land in Nevada.

 

blank

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Should probably just aim for somewhere in the midwest where there's a factory with a union. The stronger the economy the higher the rent tho, usually.
 

MetalBryan

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May 30, 2018
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I'm sympathetic to your shoulder injury and I appreciate the struggle of these kinds of decisions. I want to second a lot of what has been said here. I'm trying to anticipate the cost of living becoming more problematic as well, so my response is just as much for you as me.

1. Definitely put Cleveland on the list of places to check out. It's inexpensive, has great public transit (yeah, that's relative), and there's good support for the arts and public research. That doesn't apply to the entire rust belt, but several metro areas in that region are very similar in that way. I have some friends who moved to Austin and seem to like it as well. If you enjoy driving, look to move to the midwest.

2. Without accounting for context, if you are in a serious relationship and there is resistance to taking a serious step by moving in, it's not that serious.

3. Ask yourself why you own these two vehicles. For me, I've found the higher cost of living in a city with public transit requires about as much capital as owning a vehicle and living somewhere less accessible with lower rent.

4. The house sounds like it might be emotionally important, but from where I sit it seems like an anchor causing drag in your life. I don't know if the solution is to be rid of it, but I'd make solving that problem a priority.

5. Take some perspective - I think you're going to get a little flak on here for your stated assets. A lot of folks on here would enter retirement immediately if they were given ten grand. As for me, I have a fraction of your savings and my new Osprey pack might be the most valuable property I own yet I am considering a move to Los Angeles and have laid out a financial plan that works for me in the near term. You would increase your mobility if you let your lifestyle expectations take a hit in the short term.

6. I wouldn't disregard temp/seasonal jobs. I didn't open myself up to these opportunities for a long time because they didn't fit my expectations of what a long-term plan should be. Jobs related to infrastructure projects generally pay well, aren't always related to lifting heavy things, and are available across the country. They are advertised in a lot of local newspapers - like, real local newspapers. When I visit a friend, sometimes I pick up a paper from the lobby of his fancy apartment building. It's a free paper targeted to his specific 10 block radius and it regularly advertises municipal job opportunities - like a new bridge. Think about service providers that are seasonal too - hospitality/tourism and summer teaching programs (I've had a lot of luck with camp jobs) are just two examples of work availability adjusted by holidays or the weather. If you're good with numbers, there are lots of jobs during the tax season - an example of "seasons" that cycle with economic forces. With a combination of a little savings, the sublet rental market, and a bit of luck, you can pretty much live wherever you desire at any particular moment by creating a routine of seeking this kind of work.

Good luck!!!
 
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D

Deleted member 20

I deleted myself
The house was left to me when my mom passed; my sister is too incompetent to manage it so im renting it out to a family member and giving her half the proceeds and putting the rest away for repairs and taxes. The place honestly needs alot of tlc.

The savings is basically the accumulation of about 3 years of hard work (about 70 hours week in rain/snow/ 120 degree heat). Isn't what I made but is what I was able to save while driving a 20 year old car worth about 200$

Honestly though 10k isn't much in California. Maybe 3 months worth of bills for an average one bedroom apartment.

And yeah im getting rid of the bike come spring probably because it isn't for me. I dont think its luxury really what im dealing with. I've saved that money by starving and doing nothing but play computer games for almost five years.

I might be able to drive after my injury but as it stands i truly dont feel safe driving 40 tons down the interstate for 14 hours when my arm screams at me driving my little tiny pos car for 3 hours.
I figured there was some sort of familial story to the owning of the house. Thats always tough when family & or history could stand between sound business decisions. Perhaps it would be best to try to live there and renovate it & have a home base. Maybe temporarily renting it out is best for you guys? Maybe buy your sister out over time, somehow. Maybe you could try to renovate it for your own use or use it as collateral to do something else? Maybe you use the house as collateral & start a small sustainable business? Again, many of us would kill for 1 or more of these situations. Then again many of us here have found our own ways to avoid such mainstream conundrums all together.

I still question why California if its so expensive?
Perhaps you are only seeing your past options with moving freight? What about local trucking say a dump truck? I wouldn't recommend driving freight but there are lots of Automatic/air ride triaxles & dump trailers out there these days that could be easy on the injury. Construction trucking is always local & pays a decent hourly/daily/weekly rate. You could also get licensed to operate equipment. Someone with a CDL-A & license to operate are always in demand, maybe you just deliver equipment locally to job sites on a lowboy using the 2 licenses. I know trucking & I know where i live in Massachusetts, there is always a demand for local licensed drivers.

Could you parlay your injury into SSDI?

I found my own place by accident where the economy & cost of living were just perfectly mixed with crime & grime. I live in New Bedford, MA but gentrification is spilling over from Boston as there is a commuter train line planned to connect the two cities. I already lost Boston to livability but have got the last 15 years of cheap rent. Our cheap rent is at risk once our city becomes a commuter city by train. The hipsters, yuppies and speculators will be coming barring a larger economic problems staving off such change. A looming housing market crash is eminent and widely discussed in the next few years as the market must eventually coincide with such economic recessions. In my situation this will actually help me stay insulated from such issues.

Your solutions are many but you may be stuck in the multitude of potential problems? The world is your oyster, so get after it as inaction could be worse than making the wrong move. Wrong moves make us learn & hone our vision for ourselves on how to exist on the peripheries, happy & content.
 
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ontherocks

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I worked as a flagger over the summer. They gave me a free place to stay, like super upscale, hot tub, sauna, ect. and the easiest job in the world. Literally, just hold a sign all day. Had no bills and made bank. This was in Colorado so, I just got high as fuck all day and held a sign. Lots of work out there, just have to get after it.
Sounds like a pretty sweet deal--were you working for an agency or the state? I looked into flagging when I was in a shelter in Denver, but no one was offering the whole enchilada like that.
 

roughdraft

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honestly the best advice aside from simplifying all yr assets is looking for a high crime/low-decile area to reside in. I currently live in an undesirable area and rent is cheap in a quality place, easy to find work and other ways of acquiring good, cheap needs/wants + I feel like I have a ton of leverage at my job.

yeah it's basically dull but I love that in reality - know why? I can leave and travel lovelier places with more freedom and hella cash in my pocket when the time comes without hesitation
 
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Maine is lousy with work and cheap rent. Currently renting 3 rooms in a 6 bedroom house for $400/month (yes, that's 3 bedrooms for 400 total) less than a mile from the ocean. Minimum wage is $11/hr and going up. Most small towns are desperate for workers. Portland and south is pretty pricey but the rest of the state is game on.
 

Coywolf

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I'll second the living in a vehicle idea. Probably the best thing that has happened to me recently is my van. I no longer have to struggle with housing.

Van + gym membership (shower, bathroom) + storage unit = house that can move around (~$175/mo + gas and food)
 

Groundscore

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I'll second the living in a vehicle idea. Probably the best thing that has happened to me recently is my van. I no longer have to struggle with housing.

Van + gym membership (shower, bathroom) + storage unit = house that can move around (~$175/mo + gas and food)
Absolutely; almost everyone struggles to pay rent every month, and mortgages are even worse, as while you are theoretically getting something, it's only if you live long enough to pay it off, and it has a way of tying you down and draining you financially.

Vehicle dwelling isn't without expense and challenges, but it is WAY cheaper than rent or a mortgage! Plus you can move as often as you like, fast and easy.
 

Lynora

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Maine is really great if you aren't in Portland area. Never short for work, wages are good, and housing and general cost of living is reasonable. Central Maine if probably the best in those regards. Also, looking for jobs with housing is always a great option to consider..
 

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