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chelle21689's avatar

Would you live in a expensive city because of the scenery and things to do?

Asked by chelle21689 (5259 points ) July 17th, 2012

OR would you live in a decent/small city that doesn’t make you so broke?

For example. I think southern California in LA county is a nice place and I’d like to live there (depending what area). It is near beaches, it has warm sunny weather, can go to mountains to ski, go to Hollywood and see the fun events, etc. There’s just so much going on for that area. BUT it’s so expensive! It’s about 1,000 for a decent 1 bedroom apartment which is difficult to find. Maybe even 1,000 for a studio. Not to mention traffic can be insane.

Even though I like that part of California, I think I would rather stay here in Ohio. I live in a smaller city but it’s growing, I’d say we have a lot going for ourselves. Jobs are easier to find than California, houses are cheaper, less traffic, we have Cedar Point (best theme park!), the big zoo (rated top zoos in nation), lake eerie, water parks, snowboarding during winter, etc.

Although Ohio isn’t as exciting as California, I’d be able to have MORE money and be able to travel all around the world. I’d be less likely to do that if I lived in California. Plus, I have family here.

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26 Answers

Qingu's avatar

I live in a city because I like having a job and not having to own a car.

nikipedia's avatar

I’ve lived in New York City, LA, and San Francisco. All very expensive cities. In my experience, salaries/pay tend to scale with the cost of living. It has always been totally worth it to me.

bolwerk's avatar

I live in NYC, and probably wouldn’t live in most other parts of the USA, but most of the reasons revolve around society: for all its problems, people are generally less priggish and more live-and-let-live. Yeah, I like that there is more to do, though I prefer to travel for scenry.

Oh, and to elaborate on @Qingu‘s comment: life can be a lot cheaper if you can manage without a car. Look at adding “housing + transportation” in a single index and even NYC doesn’t seem too expensive if you cut Manhattan out.

Also, for travel in general, I don’t know how easy traveling the world is from Ohio. It’s probably cheaper from the coasts, preferably near really major airports, where you get the advantage of a high scale of flights and happen to be closer to other continents anyway.

jca's avatar

I have lived in apartment buildings, although not in big cities. I liked living in them, but now I live in a house in a rural area and I like it better. I like laying on the deck and looking at the scenery, and my cats like going out in the yard and enjoying themselves. So no, I would not, at this point, want to live in a big city.

Coloma's avatar

I live in the country because I like having peace, privacy on a 5 acre property, zero crime worries and the wildlife, which is much preferable to the wildlife in a city. lol
I also want the option of farm pets like geese.
I have lived in San Diego and other SoCal locations, and it’s great when you’re younger and like the party scene, but these days a happy brownie on my little mountain and communing with nature is where it’s at for me.
I especially like having no crime worries, never lock my house, keys in the car at all times and sleeping with all the doors and windows open.

I like the energy of the city on occasion but much prefer the serenity of country living.

Judi's avatar

I think salaries are probably a bit higher in California. I am now in a compromise. I gave up the Orange County house in southern CA, and live about 2 hours north. Housing is cheaper, but it won’t appreciate in value like SO Cal will. If it weren’t for my grand kids being here, I would probably opt for less house, more clean air, more moderate sunshine (we have been up to 106 degress this week) and culture.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

For as many metropolitan areas that I have lived in (DC, Minneapolis, Chicago and Memphis), what I’ve found is that the increased cost-of-living isn’t worth the scenery and things to do. Those can be accomplished during a visit. Only a few friends and family members regularly take advantage of what is offered in their metropolitan area.

In the US, pay is typically scaled to that region, but not always. If I were ever to make another move to this type of area based upon a job, then I would do the research into the cost of living and negotiate the salary based upon that.

chelle21689's avatar

Agreed Pied

Crashsequence2012's avatar

I do:

Upper West Side, Manhattan.

I’ll just say it isn’t worth it. The food, the clothes? Fabulous.

Museums, clubs? Awesome.

But things just don’t add up. You would think that New Yorkers were independent types but they are not. It’s obvious that the are very reliant on the city itself. The city knows this and uses it as an excuse to exploit and oppress.

The NYPD is the most impudent, smug and self righteous gang of thugs in existence. They split hairs when evaluating your parking for possible ticketing then constantly break parking laws themselves.

The Sheeple of New York stand by and do nothing.

New Yorkers mock the rest of the country yet would panic in the streets if their milk or salmon ran out.
The Inhabitants of the rest of the US are good enough to supply NYC with what it needs to operate yet are _far_too stupid to have a viable opinion on matters (Politics is a perfect example).

Then there is NYC INC.‘s relentless war on the automobile:

Funds extorted in the form of car registration are misappropriated toward public transit while it’s roads resemble those of bombed out Baghdad, COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE. That doesn’t smack of promoting choice to me.

Parking “enforcement” is a blatent program to collect capital. Attempt to look a parking enforcement “officer” in the eye. They won’t do it because they KNOW they are part of something unjust. They know they have likely wronged you.

But to sorta get back to the point:

NYC simply is not what it would have you believe.

Visit? go have a ball. Become entangled in it’s ceaseless bullshit as a resident? I’d advise against it.

marinelife's avatar

I do live in a very expensive metropolitan area. But it is not because of the scenery or things to do which are both great. it is because this is where my husband works. (I work at home and could work anywhere).

bolwerk's avatar

@Crashsequence2012: huh? NYC’s “corruption” is in favor of over-accommodation of automobiles, if anything. A dipshit in an SUV can get away with almost any sort of violent recklessness. At least if they aren’t drunk. It’s the the non-drivers who get screwed by having losing a majority of their streetscape to automobiles all while subsidizing gas-guzzling trips from the suburbs, both with public funds and higher prices thanks to all the traffic congestion.

The NYPD is more akin to mafia than a modern police force, but drivers in NYC have it way too easy relative to the practicality of driving in NYC.

Coloma's avatar

The only home invasion robberies I have to worry about are the Raccoons coming in through the cat door and having a party on my dining room table. Lemon bundt cake for all!
True story, woke up to 4 raccoons eating cake in my kitchen one night at 4am, let them eat cake!

bolwerk's avatar

@Coloma: same here, in an inner city part of NYC. Probably the same almost anywhere in the USA, outside something akin to a bad neighborhood of Detroit. You’re more likely to be injured by something in your home or by an automobile than you are by crime. The things that make the news do so because they’re sensational enough to be unlikely to affect you.

Crashsequence2012's avatar

@bolwerk over-accomodation????

Please, tell me where all these empty parking spaces are?

Streetscape you say. Why do you suppose the roads are there in the first place?

NYC drivers have it too easy? Really? Also, It’s not for you to determine for me what is practical concerning my status as a motorist.

If you aren’t for coexistence of transportation modes that is your prerogative.

bolwerk's avatar

@Crashsequence2012: that’s just it. The price for parking spaces is too low, so they all get taken. Then people double-park and that encourages traffic jams. The “roads” (I assume you mean streets) were presumably built so people could walk and move cargo along them with carts. To this day their primary use is by pedestrians, especially in Manhattan.

Oh, and the city requires onerous parking minimums in most places, which reduces the amount of space available for commerce and housing and increases traffic congestion even more. This is another indirect subsidy from non-drivers to drivers. And, regardless, there is little reason for most people living in Manhattan or the inner parts of the outer boroughs to be parking on anything approaching a regular basis.

If you were for coexistence, you’d agree!

YARNLADY's avatar

I would love to live in “Santa Barbara” again. I would gladly trade this four bedroom house with a yard and pool for a little two bedroom apartment if it meant I could live by the beach.

tinyfaery's avatar

I’ve lived in L.A. my whole life, give or take a few years. I don’t know what’s it like not to live in a place with exorbitant housing prices and a high cost of living. I’m spoiled. I hope I never have to leave.

woodcutter's avatar

They may be a nice place to visit but I wouldn’t really want to live there.

jerv's avatar

I do not regret having spent most of my life is “expensive” areas.

New Hampshire had plenty of space, plenty of parking, low crime, and I had a nice cabin in the middle of the woods. Skiing was close enough to ski there (some people actually skied to work!), Boston is only ~100 miles away if you want “big city” life for an afternoon, and it was overall a great place to live. However, rent and utilities were rarely under $1000/mth.

Seattle… plenty of culture, great food, lots of things to do, moderate traffic, parking is okay unless in most areas… and the cost of living is slightly higher.

Most of the less expensive places I’ve been (in the US; lets leave foreign countries out of this) were places where you could not pay me to live. They are cheap for a reason :p

cazzie's avatar

I used to live in an expensive city, but with kid, so I wasn’t really benefiting much from the surrounds. Hubby insisted on staying in town because it was closer to the clubs and pubs and meeting up with his friends. I finally got him to buy a house in a village a bit further out for us. Now, MY social and family life is more pleasant, a better school for the little man. If hubby wants to party with his buddies (which is often) he just overnights in town with them and leaves me alone. (like last night, for example) Win. Win. Win.

Part of the deal of living out here, though, was we were meant to have a car and I was meant to get a valid drivers licsense, but that didn’t quite work out, but the shops are only 2km up a hill I can walk or 4km by bike or bus.

jerv's avatar

@cazzie That reminds me….

Once you get near the coast, cities are a bit different than anything the Midwest attempts. Look at a map and tell me how much unpaved area there is around Seattle; it’s a strip from Everett to Tacoma with a few cities in between, all rolled into one. The Boston metroplex is likewise huge. Except for Columbus, Ohio has nothing remotely comparable, and even Columbus is a pale imitation of a real metroplex.

In NH, I lived ~15 miles from the nearest supermarket. Here, I have one right next door, but my commute has doubled to ~25 miles. Cars are just as mandatory in this city as they were in the country :p

cazzie's avatar

@jerv That is the difference, perhaps, with European cities. We lived very close to the town center. Grocery stores are peppered around the city so you can easily walk every day and get dinner, rather than plan for the entire week and drive your car and load up. The bus system is a bit expensive, but very large and even services our village every half hour or more during the weekdays. The ‘big city’ is still only 30–40 minutes away by bus and the ticket costs no more than if I was catching one within the city. Running other errands become a problem, though, when things are heavy or awkward to carry. It is also horrible taking a sick kid on the bus to the doctor and getting to my son’s school as well, to pick him up or go to meetings, that is a bit awkward in bad weather. I can walk there in 30 minutes, but it is through a trail, up a hill, though the woods and we do have winter and some weather here.

zenvelo's avatar

I live in a suburb of San Francisco, but work in the city and find myself coming into SF for a considerable amount of my leisure time, either SF or Oakland. I take my kids to the movies in the next town over from my suburb, but there are only a few places to get a half way decent meal before a movie (Buckhorn, Chipotle, we don’t eat fast food). At the movies in the cities are half dozen good restaurants within a block.

I’d move into San Francisco in a heartbeat if I had the money and the kids were out of school. The hardest part for living in Oakland or San Francisco is having to pay for private school if you want your kid to have a halfway decent education.

jerv's avatar

@zenvelo Whenever I near complaints about public schools, I am thankful to have grown up in the expensive Northeast, specifically VT where the public schools are better than many private schools elsewhere, whether for general education or for special needs.

bolwerk's avatar

@jerv: heh, I was thinking the other day how New England states are the only part of the USA where I travel and find people to be natively broadly literate and well-educated. It’s unheard of almost everywhere else.

Aster's avatar

Yes, I’d live in a small, non congested city if it had gorgeous scenery and variable weather. The lots to do part doesn’t interest me anymore. If the taxes and utilities were out of sight in cost I’d have to be able to afford it with no problems whatsoever.
We live three miles from a decent grocery store and a Sonic and two miles from a gas station and beauty salon in a gated community with pool, clubhouse and large lake. It’s ok; I feel very safe here and we don’t lock the doors. But I’d prefer five to twenty acres with mountains, solitude and deer. The traffic here is , well, non-traffic. lol I cannot imagine fighting traffic and crime; dreadful thought.

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