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-   -   Where to move to in the USA (https://britishexpats.com/forum/usa-57/where-move-usa-773800/)

Longhorn Oct 6th 2012 1:26 pm

Where to move to in the USA
 
Afternoon / Morning all,

First time posting, have been on the forum a few times before, but excited to join in now. My wife and I are seriously thinking about relocating to the US. She is originally from Montana but we've been living in the UK since we got married seven years ago and now have two boys.

We filed for the I-130 this week and need to think other stuff over. One of the first questions that does come to mind is actually where to move to. We're pretty open minded, but our main wants would be access to the great outdoors, good family living, amenities, good schools, low cost of life / real estate and low crime levels (not very original for a young family, I know!).

We're not at all attracted by big cities like Chicago, NY, LA, or Frisco, but we're not opposed to the idea of city living, we were going to move to Atlanta with my current company earlier this year, but it fell through at the last minute.

For those of you already out there and in similar circumstances, where did you choose to go and what has been your experience? For others also thinking along the same lines as us, have you already narrowed things down to a short-list and how did you do this?

All thoughts and comments welcome! ;)

TimNiceBut Oct 6th 2012 2:11 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 
The simplest possible answer is - where either of you can find a job. The job market is still pretty depressed out here, so unfortunately a large part of the decision is going to be influenced by the ability to earn a living.

mwdake Oct 6th 2012 2:39 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 
Here is the top 100 cities to live according to Money Magazine...

http://money.cnn.com/magazines/money...s/2012/top100/

As pointed out already your ability to find a job will need to be considered. Sure the unemployment rate is high in the US right now but for college graduates or highly skilled people it is much lower.

good luck

Longhorn Oct 6th 2012 3:06 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 
Sure thing on the job front. Thanks for the list of cities, I'm sure I'll be referring to this more extensively moving forward. Finding a job is one of the cornerstones. And you folks are right on that pretty much dictating location, I've got good commercial experience and speak another language and these are things I'll be looking to play on when seeking for and applying for jobs. I've done brief research on this on LinkedIn, and here the search is pretty much location specific. Naturally, I tend to think of places I am familiar with Seattle/Tacoma, Portland, San Antonio, Dallas, Atlanta and a few others. I'm conscious that to increase our chances I'll want to be looking in other locations too. I'd welcome any advice on other locations that could be suitable, but at the same time don't want to be seeking in places where I may later down the line find to be unsuitable or undesirable... Cheers.

Pulaski Oct 6th 2012 5:14 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 
Try adding Charlotte, NC to your list - not in the city, but to the north (Huntersville & Mooresville) or south (Union County & Rockhill, SC). A good area, good schools, low house prices, lakes and mountains nearby, beaches also not too far away. Short mild winters, summer heat not too bad (compared to places further south - though the humidity isn't great) ..... what's not to like?

AmerLisa Oct 6th 2012 5:42 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 

Originally Posted by Longhorn (Post 10316813)
Sure thing on the job front. Thanks for the list of cities, I'm sure I'll be referring to this more extensively moving forward. Finding a job is one of the cornerstones. And you folks are right on that pretty much dictating location, I've got good commercial experience and speak another language and these are things I'll be looking to play on when seeking for and applying for jobs. I've done brief research on this on LinkedIn, and here the search is pretty much location specific. Naturally, I tend to think of places I am familiar with Seattle/Tacoma, Portland, San Antonio, Dallas, Atlanta and a few others. I'm conscious that to increase our chances I'll want to be looking in other locations too. I'd welcome any advice on other locations that could be suitable, but at the same time don't want to be seeking in places where I may later down the line find to be unsuitable or undesirable... Cheers.

I vote Seattle/Tacoma, but partly because we live there and it has worked well for us, especially for my husband, who is the Brit (along with our daughter) in this family.

Real Estate prices can be a bit spendy, but it truly depends on where you live. We live south of Seattle (closer to Tacoma) and while 7 years ago things were booming, it's not so now, and a very good deal can be found here in Pierce County.

Weather can be pretty similar to what you'd find in the UK, although we've been on an extreme dry stretch (please don't listen to all that will tell you it rains continuously, it doesn't!) and actually it's pretty darn gorgeous here. We don't have the stifling heat and humidity that the south is pretty notorious for as well. A lot of outdoor activities here, whether it be camping, hiking, whatever. It's also very trendy.

I'm originally from Southern California and really wanted to go back there, still do at times. But as does everything, it has changed and not for the best.

Good luck with your decision, hopefully you can narrow it down to something you'll all like! :)

kins Oct 7th 2012 12:14 am

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 

Originally Posted by Longhorn (Post 10316715)
We filed for the I-130 this week and need to think other stuff over. One of the first questions that does come to mind is actually where to move to. We're pretty open minded, but our main wants would be access to the great outdoors, good family living, amenities, good schools, low cost of life / real estate and low crime levels (not very original for a young family, I know!).

We have all of that in southern Maine, and Portland ME is a really nice little city with great restaurants.

The downsides are the difficulty in finding jobs, and the long cold winters - although if you like skiing then the long cold winters are a plus.

RICH Oct 7th 2012 3:58 am

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 
Your wife is from Montana. I would think her home town would be a place to start. At least one of you will be familiar with things.

If you have no ties, moving on later would be straightforward, relative to picking a random place now to move to from UK.

Duncan Roberts Oct 7th 2012 4:29 am

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 

Originally Posted by Longhorn (Post 10316715)
our main wants would be access to the great outdoors, good family living, amenities, good schools, low cost of life / real estate and low crime levels

One of the suburbs of Cleveland, Very low cost of living compared to other areas, potentially some of the best schools in the country, all the amenities you could want and easy access to the metroparks or other outdoor type things. Plus you're right next to a great lake. People diss it but Cleveland can be a fantastic place to live.

ian-mstm Oct 7th 2012 11:59 am

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 

Originally Posted by Duncan Roberts (Post 10317558)
People diss it but Cleveland can be a fantastic place to live.

Despite the cold winters... apparently, you can be hot in Cleveland!

Ian

Derrygal Oct 7th 2012 3:16 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 

Originally Posted by Duncan Roberts (Post 10317558)
One of the suburbs of Cleveland, Very low cost of living compared to other areas, potentially some of the best schools in the country, all the amenities you could want and easy access to the metroparks or other outdoor type things. Plus you're right next to a great lake. People diss it but Cleveland can be a fantastic place to live.

Yes - Cleveland has some nice suburbs and property prices are reasonable compared to some other cities in the US. There is a lot to do here. The Metroparks, wonderful museums, the world famous Cleveland Orchestra and some very good theatres in Playhouse Square. Only downside is the cold snowy winters. The Eastern suburbs get a lot more snow than the Western suburbs due to the "Lake Effect".

MsElui Oct 7th 2012 6:22 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 
I'm in Columbus Ohio. NOT a very glamorous place -firmly midwestern lol. But its a nice place to live. Not too built up, friendly people, job front is good with some big employers, we live on the outer parts of the city and it feel semi rural.

ScousePete Oct 8th 2012 5:14 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 
based on your avatar alone, I would say Texas, but I wouldn't wish that on anyone.

Bob Oct 8th 2012 6:08 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 

Originally Posted by kins (Post 10317415)
We have all of that in southern Maine, and Portland ME is a really nice little city with great restaurants.

The downsides are the difficulty in finding jobs, and the long cold winters - although if you like skiing then the long cold winters are a plus.

Add Bangor/Augusta area to the mix too. Anywhere along Rt1 between the two is lovely.

Jobs, well all depends on what kind of work you do.

Portsmouth area of NH might be worth a thought too, doable commute into Boston if that's where the work is, but much cheaper CoL.

Anyway, has the OP's OH gotten UK citizenship? Certainly worth getting before leaving the UK because it's so much harder to move back to the UK now.

Longhorn Oct 8th 2012 8:13 pm

Re: Where to move to in the USA
 
Thanks guys, this is all useful stuff. @ AmerLisa: yep Seattle/Tacoma was (is) my first love, I travelled there for the first time in 1999 and have been back six times since and I would love to end up living in Washington, plenty of great stuff here in terms of work, lifestyle, Mt Rainier, etc, act (I follow the Mariners too!)

Cleveland is deffo getting some good press here, and I will read up more on it since this is one place I blanked out in my mind. It's funny how mentally we are disposed to think positively or not about places (particularly in the US in my case) based on things we know from books, films, TV shows, magazines, sport, and friends.

Strangely enough the UK climate does not suit my wife all that well. The damp really gets her. Cold does not bother her but I've found on winter trips to MT which is dry, the cold is a lot a lot less severe feeling compared the UK even of the mercury reads a lot lower. @ Bob - yes the OH did become a UK citizen last year, so that is that done! :-)

How is the cold is NH and the mid-west? Is it damp like the UK or is it dry like in Montana?

@ ScousePete - well yeah we do have family connections with The University of Texas at Austin and I've been indoctrinated to the Longhorns and I would deffo consider TX as an option if the right job was available. I found San Anton and Austin to be lovely and engaging. Dallas on the other hand I found to a big city, and not much else, a bit blah, but I would give it another go.

RICH, yep starting where my wife is from would seem like a good way to go, only MT is pretty far from anything. I absolutely love it there, but really don't think I'd be able to find a job there with my skill-set and experience. My thinking is to research different cities and states and see where matching jobs are and apply from here. Is this too ambitious, or would it be necessary to be in the US already before applying jobs, even in other cities/states... I want to plan this as best I can, I value all of your feedback. Thanks, all.

Later, J


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