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GStClaire's avatar

Is the quality of life really better in the Southeastern U.S. than in the Northeastern U.S.?

Asked by GStClaire (22points) February 14th, 2011

Do people who move from the North to the South ever miss it and want to come back?
It seems from the way people talk that the South is the promised land, and the Northeast is hell on earth. Is that really how it is?
Are there any people who actually like it in the Northeast?

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24 Answers

marinelife's avatar

I love being back in the Northeast from the South.

I love having actual seasons. (There are no seasons in Florida except rainy and dry).

I love that I not smack in the middle of the Bible belt and all that that entails.

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

I know a couple of people who have moved to GA and wanted to move all the way back to Western New York. They missed the snow of all things. But I don’t blame them, I love the snow as well. I don’t necessarily think the quality is better just because it’s cheaper.

VS's avatar

I live in South Carolina and love it here. I have lived in NYC (two years), was born and raised in Richmond, VA, and also lived in the mountains of western Virginia for a year. I just can’t stand the cold. I’ll take mild winters and sweltering summers over several feet of snow and ice anytime. I think this winter, I may have had to scrape my windshield a half dozen times. The rest of time, it just doesn’t get that cold, although this past winter has been colder than usual. I have not personally known any Yankees to come South and return for anything other than visits. I do know I would not want to be in Florida though for the very reasons @marinelife cites, well that and the fact that it is full of old retired Yankees!

klutzaroo's avatar

No. Who says it is? We have major issues down here (in Georgia) just like everyone else. A lot of people choose to be blind to them, just because that’s the way they choose to live, but in general quality of life is on par with or lower than in the northeastern US where there are better infrastructures for dealing with social issues than exist down here. Its cheaper because people are poorer. I don’t even know how to start to address all the misconceptions with this question so I’m just going to stop now.

wundayatta's avatar

I believe there is a demographic trend of people moving back after spending a few years in the South. I don’t know why they do it. I’m guessing part of it is family. Part of it is weather. Part of it is probably the different culture down there and Northerners never really feeling comfortable.

klutzaroo's avatar

@wundayatta Damnyankees, lol.

wundayatta's avatar

@klutzaroo I’d visit you, but there is not enough money in the world to get me to stay. So don’t even try! ;-)

perspicacious's avatar

Ever heard the term “Yankee, go home.” Seriously, Southerners are welcoming but care nothing about Northerners bringing their tight-wound liberalism to the area. In the South we believe people have the right to live as they choose without others trying to impose their own brand of what’s right on them. Live and let live. All of the people I’ve ever met here in the South who came here from any other part of the country have not wanted to leave.

klutzaroo's avatar

@perspicacious Some people from the south are liberals. Case in point. I find your idea that “In the South we believe people have the right to live as they choose without others trying to impose their own brand of what’s right on them” laughable at best. Have you never taken a look around you here in the Bible Belt seen all the people trying to mandate what other people do and how they’re allowed to live? There’s more of that around here from the born southerners than any Yankees bringing anything down. There are TONS of people down here who embrace “live and let live, but only if you live like I think you should live and don’t deviate from it” rather than “live and let live.” People down here are more judgmental and intrusive with their tight-wound conservationism than any Yankee liberal. And they’re more violent and vitriolic about it too. Ludicrous.

Where in the world are you from and have you ever looked around you?

perspicacious's avatar

@klutzaroo Obviously we are not from the same place or even close to.

klutzaroo's avatar

@perspicacious Again, where in the world are you from and have you ever looked around you?

TexasDude's avatar

Depends on what factors you are using to judge.

As an evil, backwards, hate-filled, uber-religious Southerner who has visited the Northeast to see half of my family numerous times, I’d prefer to stay down here. I don’t like big cities all that much, unless I’m going on a shopping excursion, and I prefer having a big backyard. Quality of life, as I think of it, is directly proportional to the amount of trees, mountains, barns, and cows that surround you at any given time. Therefore, I’m happier down here (at least in my area).

BarnacleBill's avatar

I think the difference is that people in general are more tense in the Northeast. Except for people from Atlanta; they’re pretty tense, too. It must be the traffic jams.

incendiary_dan's avatar

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard We’ve got plenty of trees, mountains, barns, and cows around here in the Northeast. Otherwise, nobody would pay me to teach their kids wilderness skills.

In fact, the wilderness school I teach at is right near the Appalachian Trail. I should really hike that sometime.

jerv's avatar

I loved the time I spent in the Northeast. I spent a few years in the Navy and have lived in the Seattle area for a couple of years, but I was born and raised in New England and, aside from my time in the military, lived there until fairly recently.

I moved mostly for occupational reasons, and I still kind of miss the Northeast sometimes. When my wife and I were looking at places to move, the first thing we agreed on was that the South did not have even the slimmest chance of a possibility of thinking about contemplating. We wanted someplace where the education system worked, that wasn’t bigoted or xenophobic, that didn’t have a recent history of hate-related violence, and that didn’t have all sorts of silly laws that make it seem like a Theocracy. I’ve tried to avoid stereotyping, but after dealing with a bunch of people from Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, and Florida without meeting one that I didn’t want to choke after three minutes, it’s probably not the best place for me to be. (I have met a handful of cool Carolinians though.) Texas was out for the same reasons, only doubly so.

However, the Seattle area is a lot like the Northeast; educated, Liberal, laid-back… many of the things I liked about New England. That is a large part of why we settled here when we decided to abandon the Northeast.

@perspicacious You never met me then. Every time I’ve been to the South, I hated it and couldn’t wait to leave.

@BarnacleBill Yes, many New Englanders are a bit intense. It’s not the traffic jams though; I never dealt with them within 50 miles of where I lived. Of course, we also have a strong work ethic; something I see lacking here in the Northwest and also noticed missing in CA, FL, GA, and KS. So it’s safe to say that we are a little more serious.

@Fiddle_Playing_Creole_Bastard I lived on five acres (two clearcut, three thickly wooded) about half an hour from any place with a population over 5K and over an hour away from anything that qualifies as “big city”.
My nearest neighbor was too far away to hit their house with a pistol even if there weren’t a billion trees in the way, so I could walk out naked and piss in the road without anybody around to care. My morning commute took me between two grazing field for a local beef cattle farm on the top of a mountain; the same mountain we had a great view of from our bedroom window.
Next time you are up North, visit the real New England ;)

ETpro's avatar

Well, it’s certainly warmer in the Southeastern states. You’re more apt to be hit by a hurricane or tornado there, though. The South boasts a shorter life expectancy, higher obesity rate, greater illiteracy and poverty. But hey, the taxes are generally low. Name your poison.

jerv's avatar

@ETpro You forgot; the rents are pretty low there too. Or is that by necessity due to the poverty rate?

ETpro's avatar

@jerv True, but sadly the lower salaries take some of the blush of that rose.

jerv's avatar

@ETpro Part of why I moved from NH was that it was hard to find a job that paid enough to make rent. A lot of employers paid barely above the Federal minimum wage for the average non-professional job; not good when/where rents tend to start at $700/month and go up from there. Not everybody is a doctor, lawyer, electrician, or other high-salary type. Here in WA, the state minimum wage is higher than what many NH employers are willing to pay, and despite some thongs being pricier, the overall cost of living is slightly lower.

Now, 40 hours a week at minimum wage ($7.25) in a warm area where rents are closer to $600 isn’t as bad as 40 hours at $10/hr where the rents are $850 plus exorbitant heating costs that drive the average closer to $1100. The catch is that zero hours a week sucks anywhere, and it seems that the South as a region is pretty bad as far as unemployment goes.

ETpro's avatar

@jerv Frankly, I just avoid buying thongs. THey look lousy on me anyway. So the cost of thongs is a non issue to me. :-)

klutzaroo's avatar

LOL at @jerv pissing in the road in the nude. :)

Aster's avatar

The things I miss about New Jersey are the hoagies and the pizza. What I didn’t like was not having attached garages. Where the heck are the garages in NJ? LOL As far as four seasons are concerned Texas has four seasons. Just because we sometimes don’t get snow doesn’t mean we don’t have a boiling summer, brief fall, cold winter and lovely but brief spring. And that reminds me: it’s time to plants veggies now. And yes; people do speak and move slower down here and they smile and wave. I, for one, like that.

VS's avatar

Four seasons? Whoever heard of such an absurb notion!
My northern friends tell me that Minnesota has only two: winter and construction. We here in South Carolina also have only two: hot as hell and snow day! Spring and Fall are for sissies!! :D

jerv's avatar

The Northeast has five; mud season is between winter and spring.

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