Did Wilcox just land on the coaches Hot Seat.....

7,559 Views | 88 Replies | Last: 8 mo ago by Cal89
Cal89
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calumnus said:

Cal89 said:

calumnus said:

southseasbear said:

calumnus said:

71Bear said:

dmh65 said:

A lot of ex-Californians in Boise, maybe they can tell you. I know that I liked it there, though it was a brief visit. Beautiful place, nice people, affordable; what's not to like?
A number of things but I'll stick to #1 for now - too far from the ocean.

I lived for a short time in another state. I hated it, quit my job and moved back to the Bay Area. I wouldn't consider living anywhere that is more than an hour's drive to the ocean.


Agreed. I need to be near the ocean and have views of hills or mountains (so Florida does not work). I hate the cold except to visit. I love San Francisco, but it is too cold and gray too many days for my psyche. The East Bay is great. West LA and San Diego are great (though they all have their share of cold(ish) and gray too). Oregon, Washington, Idaho, BC, Colorado are all nice to visit but too far north for my taste.

Best for me is Hawaii and the Pacific islands. I love the tropics, especially when the trade winds are blowing. We live on Guam and love it here, weather isn't as good as Hawaii (especially this time of year) but it is a fraction of the Hawaii cost, business opportunities abound, it isn't overcrowded, people are relaxed and friendly like Hawaii decades ago and we love traveling in and exploring Asia.

To each their own.
Agree with a lot of this. I can't tolerate cold, wet, overcast. As I'm considering retirement, the search is on for a place significantly less expensive and crowded than LA. I would love to live in Palm Springs, but it is almost as expensive as LA and still has the oppressive California taxes. I love the tropics but Hawaii is too expensive. Thought of Guam but it seems so remote. (Is there a quality hospital there with a state of the art cancer center?) The Pacific Northwest is too wet and/or gloomy. Boise and Reno are too cold. Most likely we will be settling in the metropolitan areas of Las Vegas, Phoenix, or Tucson.


Guam is remote. Medical is so, so with a new hospital in the works. However for planned medical many go to the excellent but inexpensive medical tourism resorts in the Philippines.

My recommendation is take a look at Saipan In the CNMI for the beauty, weather and huge tax advantages for American tax payers. Just stay over 6 months a year to establish the CNMI as your tax residence.

A condo on a powder white sand beach with sunset views. Arrive after Christmas and stay through June.

That way you avoid mainland winter and avoid tropical rainy/heat/humidity/typhoon season. It gives you half the year to visit friends and family and attend Cal football games and MLB games. Maybe even just have a motor home on the Mainland? That mitigates the remoteness issue. Or travel the world. Or both.

CNMI: Medicare and Social security apply, no state tax, no inheritance tax, no sales tax, no property tax (though you cannot own land). No US income tax per se.

Income taxes are at same rates as IRS, but payable to the local government with most of it rebated back:
$0 to $20,000. 90% of tax rebated
$20k to $100k 70% of tax rebated
Everything over $100k 50% of tax rebated
You can underpay, anticipating your rebate and pay a 4% penalty.

So you can live off of your social security, 401K or IRA, or invest in a CNMI business, which can be passed on to your heirs tax free.


That's really good info, thanks for sharing those details.

Really happy for you. Seems you found your Utopia. What's the comparative cost of groceries there? I realize no The Home Depots and the like, a good thing, but are there hardware stores?


We actually have a Home Depot, which we have supported more than I'd like in our refurbishment (we bought a fixer upper with ocean and mountain views backing up on jungle and a stream for $75k on Craigslist). A friend of mine owns a large hardware store that competes with HD mostly by buying direct from China so we buy from him whenever possible.

Groceries vary. The main local chain, Payless, (nicknamed "Pay more, get less) is a lot like a Safeway. There are things like breakfast cereal or mainland milk in cartoons I never buy. California produce, especially orgainics, is relatively expensive. Previously frozen meat (beef and chicken) and eggs are cheap. Best deal is fresh local fish. Tuna sashimi, wahoo or marlin caught yesterday for less than $6 a pound. We eat a lot of mackerel from Japan and Korea or milkfish from the Philippines.

There is a Washington based warehouse style retailer, Cost-U-Less, that is like a smaller Costco. But I've written former Cal basketball player Richard Chang, president of Costco Asia, to try to convince him to open one here. Japanese retailer Don Quijote is opening soon.

There are a lot of Korean grocery stores (Kim Chee Market is just down the hill from my house). Anything imported to Guam is duty free, but has to confirm to US labeling laws. So packaged produce from Korea, canned and packaged food from the Phillipines is huge. Tetra packs of milk and cheese from New Zealand are cheap. Really popular are boxes of Danish pork ribs for BBQ. Importers just attach labels if they didn't have one. I am working to expand offerings from Europe (especially cheeses and alcohol) and Mexico as part of my business.

We also eat alot of the food that just grows on our property: papayas (ripe and green), mangos, coconuts, bananas, bread fruit, guavas, apple guavas, custard apples, figs, star fruit, moringa, sweet potatoes and sweet potato greens (the latter replaces spinach and kale in stir fries, saags and smoothies).

Property tax is $50 per year. Electricity is $150 a month running AC. Water and sewer is $20. Solar panels are cheap as there are no tariffs.

By far our largest expense is dining out. So if we ever needed to economize that would be it.

Thank you very much. Most helpful.

Lastly, what are the options for internet access out there?
Sig test...
calumnus
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Big C said:

calumnus said:

Cal89 said:

calumnus said:

southseasbear said:

calumnus said:

71Bear said:

dmh65 said:

A lot of ex-Californians in Boise, maybe they can tell you. I know that I liked it there, though it was a brief visit. Beautiful place, nice people, affordable; what's not to like?
A number of things but I'll stick to #1 for now - too far from the ocean.

I lived for a short time in another state. I hated it, quit my job and moved back to the Bay Area. I wouldn't consider living anywhere that is more than an hour's drive to the ocean.


Agreed. I need to be near the ocean and have views of hills or mountains (so Florida does not work). I hate the cold except to visit. I love San Francisco, but it is too cold and gray too many days for my psyche. The East Bay is great. West LA and San Diego are great (though they all have their share of cold(ish) and gray too). Oregon, Washington, Idaho, BC, Colorado are all nice to visit but too far north for my taste.

Best for me is Hawaii and the Pacific islands. I love the tropics, especially when the trade winds are blowing. We live on Guam and love it here, weather isn't as good as Hawaii (especially this time of year) but it is a fraction of the Hawaii cost, business opportunities abound, it isn't overcrowded, people are relaxed and friendly like Hawaii decades ago and we love traveling in and exploring Asia.

To each their own.
Agree with a lot of this. I can't tolerate cold, wet, overcast. As I'm considering retirement, the search is on for a place significantly less expensive and crowded than LA. I would love to live in Palm Springs, but it is almost as expensive as LA and still has the oppressive California taxes. I love the tropics but Hawaii is too expensive. Thought of Guam but it seems so remote. (Is there a quality hospital there with a state of the art cancer center?) The Pacific Northwest is too wet and/or gloomy. Boise and Reno are too cold. Most likely we will be settling in the metropolitan areas of Las Vegas, Phoenix, or Tucson.


Guam is remote. Medical is so, so with a new hospital in the works. However for planned medical many go to the excellent but inexpensive medical tourism resorts in the Philippines.

My recommendation is take a look at Saipan In the CNMI for the beauty, weather and huge tax advantages for American tax payers. Just stay over 6 months a year to establish the CNMI as your tax residence.

A condo on a powder white sand beach with sunset views. Arrive after Christmas and stay through June.

That way you avoid mainland winter and avoid tropical rainy/heat/humidity/typhoon season. It gives you half the year to visit friends and family and attend Cal football games and MLB games. Maybe even just have a motor home on the Mainland? That mitigates the remoteness issue. Or travel the world. Or both.

CNMI: Medicare and Social security apply, no state tax, no inheritance tax, no sales tax, no property tax (though you cannot own land). No US income tax per se.

Income taxes are at same rates as IRS, but payable to the local government with most of it rebated back:
$0 to $20,000. 90% of tax rebated
$20k to $100k 70% of tax rebated
Everything over $100k 50% of tax rebated
You can underpay, anticipating your rebate and pay a 4% penalty.

So you can live off of your social security, 401K or IRA, or invest in a CNMI business, which can be passed on to your heirs tax free.


That's really good info, thanks for sharing those details.

Really happy for you. Seems you found your Utopia. What's the comparative cost of groceries there? I realize no The Home Depots and the like, a good thing, but are there hardware stores?


We actually have a Home Depot, which we have supported more than I'd like in our refurbishment (we bought a fixer upper with ocean and mountain views backing up on jungle and a stream for $75k on Craigslist). A friend of mine owns a large hardware store that competes with HD mostly by buying direct from China so we buy from him whenever possible.

Groceries vary. The main local chain, Payless, (nicknamed "Pay more, get less) is a lot like a Safeway. There are things like breakfast cereal or mainland milk in cartoons I never buy. California produce, especially orgainics, is relatively expensive. Previously frozen meat (beef and chicken) and eggs are cheap. Best deal is fresh local fish. Tuna sashimi, wahoo or marlin caught yesterday for less than $6 a pound. We eat a lot of mackerel from Japan and Korea or milkfish from the Philippines.

There is a Washington based warehouse style retailer, Cost-U-Less, that is like a smaller Costco. But I've written former Cal basketball player Richard Chang, president of Costco Asia, to try to convince him to open one here. Japanese retailer Don Quijote is opening soon.

There are a lot of Korean grocery stores (Kim Chee Market is just down the hill from my house). Anything imported to Guam is duty free, but has to confirm to US labeling laws. So packaged produce from Korea, canned and packaged food from the Phillipines is huge. Tetra packs of milk and cheese from New Zealand are cheap. Really popular are boxes of Danish pork ribs for BBQ. Importers just attach labels if they didn't have one. I am working to expand offerings from Europe (especially cheeses and alcohol) and Mexico as part of my business.

We also eat alot of the food that just grows on our property: papayas (ripe and green), mangos, coconuts, bananas, bread fruit, guavas, apple guavas, custard apples, figs, star fruit, moringa, sweet potatoes and sweet potato greens (the latter replaces spinach and kale in stir fries, saags and smoothies).

Property tax is $50 per year. Electricity is $150 a month running AC. Water and sewer is $20. Solar panels are cheap as there are no tariffs.

By far our largest expense is dining out. So if we ever needed to economize that would be it.


Great Richard Chang tidbit in there! Dude was just becoming a decent Pac 10 player when he blew out his knee.


Richard Chang
https://www.theceomagazine.com/executive-interviews/retail-wholesale/from-the-basketball-court-to-the-c-suite-richard-chang/
calumnus
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Cal89 said:

calumnus said:

Cal89 said:

calumnus said:

southseasbear said:

calumnus said:

71Bear said:

dmh65 said:

A lot of ex-Californians in Boise, maybe they can tell you. I know that I liked it there, though it was a brief visit. Beautiful place, nice people, affordable; what's not to like?
A number of things but I'll stick to #1 for now - too far from the ocean.

I lived for a short time in another state. I hated it, quit my job and moved back to the Bay Area. I wouldn't consider living anywhere that is more than an hour's drive to the ocean.


Agreed. I need to be near the ocean and have views of hills or mountains (so Florida does not work). I hate the cold except to visit. I love San Francisco, but it is too cold and gray too many days for my psyche. The East Bay is great. West LA and San Diego are great (though they all have their share of cold(ish) and gray too). Oregon, Washington, Idaho, BC, Colorado are all nice to visit but too far north for my taste.

Best for me is Hawaii and the Pacific islands. I love the tropics, especially when the trade winds are blowing. We live on Guam and love it here, weather isn't as good as Hawaii (especially this time of year) but it is a fraction of the Hawaii cost, business opportunities abound, it isn't overcrowded, people are relaxed and friendly like Hawaii decades ago and we love traveling in and exploring Asia.

To each their own.
Agree with a lot of this. I can't tolerate cold, wet, overcast. As I'm considering retirement, the search is on for a place significantly less expensive and crowded than LA. I would love to live in Palm Springs, but it is almost as expensive as LA and still has the oppressive California taxes. I love the tropics but Hawaii is too expensive. Thought of Guam but it seems so remote. (Is there a quality hospital there with a state of the art cancer center?) The Pacific Northwest is too wet and/or gloomy. Boise and Reno are too cold. Most likely we will be settling in the metropolitan areas of Las Vegas, Phoenix, or Tucson.


Guam is remote. Medical is so, so with a new hospital in the works. However for planned medical many go to the excellent but inexpensive medical tourism resorts in the Philippines.

My recommendation is take a look at Saipan In the CNMI for the beauty, weather and huge tax advantages for American tax payers. Just stay over 6 months a year to establish the CNMI as your tax residence.

A condo on a powder white sand beach with sunset views. Arrive after Christmas and stay through June.

That way you avoid mainland winter and avoid tropical rainy/heat/humidity/typhoon season. It gives you half the year to visit friends and family and attend Cal football games and MLB games. Maybe even just have a motor home on the Mainland? That mitigates the remoteness issue. Or travel the world. Or both.

CNMI: Medicare and Social security apply, no state tax, no inheritance tax, no sales tax, no property tax (though you cannot own land). No US income tax per se.

Income taxes are at same rates as IRS, but payable to the local government with most of it rebated back:
$0 to $20,000. 90% of tax rebated
$20k to $100k 70% of tax rebated
Everything over $100k 50% of tax rebated
You can underpay, anticipating your rebate and pay a 4% penalty.

So you can live off of your social security, 401K or IRA, or invest in a CNMI business, which can be passed on to your heirs tax free.


That's really good info, thanks for sharing those details.

Really happy for you. Seems you found your Utopia. What's the comparative cost of groceries there? I realize no The Home Depots and the like, a good thing, but are there hardware stores?


We actually have a Home Depot, which we have supported more than I'd like in our refurbishment (we bought a fixer upper with ocean and mountain views backing up on jungle and a stream for $75k on Craigslist). A friend of mine owns a large hardware store that competes with HD mostly by buying direct from China so we buy from him whenever possible.

Groceries vary. The main local chain, Payless, (nicknamed "Pay more, get less) is a lot like a Safeway. There are things like breakfast cereal or mainland milk in cartoons I never buy. California produce, especially orgainics, is relatively expensive. Previously frozen meat (beef and chicken) and eggs are cheap. Best deal is fresh local fish. Tuna sashimi, wahoo or marlin caught yesterday for less than $6 a pound. We eat a lot of mackerel from Japan and Korea or milkfish from the Philippines.

There is a Washington based warehouse style retailer, Cost-U-Less, that is like a smaller Costco. But I've written former Cal basketball player Richard Chang, president of Costco Asia, to try to convince him to open one here. Japanese retailer Don Quijote is opening soon.

There are a lot of Korean grocery stores (Kim Chee Market is just down the hill from my house). Anything imported to Guam is duty free, but has to confirm to US labeling laws. So packaged produce from Korea, canned and packaged food from the Phillipines is huge. Tetra packs of milk and cheese from New Zealand are cheap. Really popular are boxes of Danish pork ribs for BBQ. Importers just attach labels if they didn't have one. I am working to expand offerings from Europe (especially cheeses and alcohol) and Mexico as part of my business.

We also eat alot of the food that just grows on our property: papayas (ripe and green), mangos, coconuts, bananas, bread fruit, guavas, apple guavas, custard apples, figs, star fruit, moringa, sweet potatoes and sweet potato greens (the latter replaces spinach and kale in stir fries, saags and smoothies).

Property tax is $50 per year. Electricity is $150 a month running AC. Water and sewer is $20. Solar panels are cheap as there are no tariffs.

By far our largest expense is dining out. So if we ever needed to economize that would be it.

Thank you very much. Most helpful.

Lastly, what are the options for internet access out there?


Guam has super fast internet, all the transpacific cables go through Guam, plus there are two and soon to be three US military bases (I did forget to add to the above that veterans can shop at the base exchange and have the Navsl hospital for medical).

My home cable internet provider is Docomo (a Japanese company), we don't purchase the cable TV package and I don't know the cost off hand. My cellular internet is through my phone service, IT&E, a Philippines based company. My cell is about $100 a month for my IPhone and unlimited data and unlimited calls to the Mainland.

The CNMI has an internet connection to Guam. A few years ago the cable broke and they had no internet for a month, which disrupted banking, atms, credit card, etc. it has since been repaired and a second line added.

annarborbear
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Calypso said:

annarborbear said:

As an East Bay native, I came back here to retire after I inherited some family property. But the split retirement arrangement in the Midwest would have also been great - Spring through Fall in a college town like Ann Arbor, and Winters in Florida. Housing prices reasonable enough to have two nice places. I thought I could enjoy living year round back here in California. However, with wildfire smoke becoming a regular feature this time of year, I am now looking for a retreat out-of-state when this time of year arrives.
I am intrigued by both Ann Arbor and Madison. Florida scares me because I think there are too many climate change threats. I like the idea of a larger single family house but as I get older I don't relish the prospect of having to do constant maintenance. Also, having two properties sounds great but the practicalities of it worry me....are you supposed to leave one vacant for months? Sublet it? Leaving one vacant would certainly be easier if it is a condo.
A lot of different ways to do it. Many people own a home up north and then rent for January-March in Florida. That way, you are home for Christmas and for one month of Winter, which can be nice. Plenty of good Florida rentals available. My in-laws did it that way in Vero Beach. Up north, you can hire someone to look in on your house while you are gone and plow the snow. You could also do the same in Arizona if that is preferable vs. Florida.

I also once got some good advice on family - if your kids do not live around you, be sure to settle some place in retirement that they will want to visit.
dimitrig
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Cal89 said:

With respect to the ideal location, more and more people are factoring-in climate, and not just the usual sunny days, but also the the desire (oddly) for more precipitation, they are looking at rainfall totals, what areas are experiencing drought conditions or worse, like dire drought concerns. Those are proving to be quality-of-life matters, certainly life-sustaining ones at some point...

As I type I am looking out over what would normally be Lake Anderson in Morgan Hill, CA. It's a reservoir actually, one that was drained for critical damn repairs, set to take a decade to finish (huge political fiasco). We were evacuated last year due to the fires in this area. Thankfully this year, no fires near us. The largest lake in the county (Santa Clara) is now gone. Missing the view is one thing, the recreation too, but losing the natural fire break and the water source is yet another...

I mentioned in some thread here, maybe a year or two back, about how many folks I know, neighbors, co-workers who had left California. A colleague's family member owns a U-Haul place and commented on the number of rentals leaving the state had kept increasing. We've since seen more data confirming the exodus.

The K-12 educational system is generally regarded as poor in California, usually ranked in the 40s. Several families told me that was a contributing reason, but also the aforementioned drought concerns, which they felt could be very long-lasting, and with that, apt to only get worse. Mentioned also were the intentional electrical blackouts; and the sorry state of affairs that leads to those being deemed prudent decisions. Funny thing, while no one mentioned our roads as a reason for leaving, many of them later said how much better the roads were in their new states. That prompted me to look, and California, according to the Federal Highway Administration, has 38% of its roads in poor condition. Only two states are worse. Not surprisingly, most, including those I know, left because of the cost-of-living expenses, which are relatively high. By most measures, California is in the top 3-5 of most expensive states. Coupled with state and local taxes, California is seemingly always near the top, money matters remain a huge reason why many leave.

Everyone I know who left California told me (I ask these folks the same types of questions) they would have never guessed they would leave someday. It was a gradual realization of the degradation of their quality of life here, that the cost-benefit-analysis eventually pointed them elsewhere. I'd say all of them were generally fine paying more here, for housing, gas, food, etc, even more in taxes, but that they would then expect, paying top dollar, they would receive more in return, a higher standard of living, better schools, roads, etc.

My best friend left a couple years ago. He too was born and raised in California. He's a financial planner, a damn good one too. He simply concluded that there was no good reason why such a rich, high-income state, one that taxes its residents at one of the highest rates, finds itself with one of the highest state debts, per capita and debt-per-income, while delivering relatively poor quality of life attributes.

The natural beauty of the state continues, thankfully. For me too, having beaches about 45 minutes to an hour away remains a reason to stay. That and mostly my parents being here are why I remain. Also, the "ease" of attending Cal games is a factor.

I like somewhat rural areas. West of Portland has my attention, still not far from the ocean, certainly more precipitation. Not too far from an international airport (PDX). Rural parts not far from Reno also, same for SLC…. Interestingly, I am also looking at real estate in Italy, not as an investment per se, but a home for us, somewhere to take the family for 2-3 months over the summers, maybe even during different times of the year. Also other European countries, like parts of Portugal or Croatia have my interest. Back to Italy, weather-wise, parts of it are California-like; which honestly is a bit too hot for me. I'd prefer a little further north. Looking about an hour away from Milan, base of the Alps, near some awesome lakes. For those willing to consider leaving their community or state, there's much more out there if willing to jump a little further…

You've got to pay to play.

I owned a house in Alabama. I bought it for $130K. I owned it a few years and sold for a loss at $105K. Today it is worth 50% more than I sold it for, but that's still just $150K.

Meanwhile, I took the proceeds from the sale and bought a house in the California desert which is now (10 years later) worth 4-5x what I paid for it.

For older people just looking for a place to retire then I guess it doesn't matter. Just move where you want to be and can afford.

However, for younger people looking to move to low cost states to save money...

Well, I think they are shooting themselves in the foot.

Sure, they have a beautiful large home in Wisconsin or Texas or wherever, but 10 years from now it's still going to be in Wisconsin or Texas or wherever.

California is premium real estate. It's prestige real estate. You're not going to own a home in most other states (with some exceptions) and gain hundreds of thousands of dollars in equity in just a decade or maybe two.

Now, maybe that's not important to you because quality of life matters more. I get that. However, imagine how much more you can buy in that other state if you had a few hundred thousand dollars more to spend on your dream retirement home.

Maybe it's all a big Ponzi scheme and someone will be left holding the bag, but I don't think so. People want to live here. Even most of the people leaving want to live here. They just can't afford to.

This isn't Northern Virginia, where people move to for high-paying jobs and then leave as soon as they can.

California has everything I'd ever want from the beaches to the mountains to the deserts and it is mostly filled with the kind of people I want to associate with. I wouldn't move to Texas or Florida if you offered to pay my mortgage there.



calumnus
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dimitrig said:

Cal89 said:

With respect to the ideal location, more and more people are factoring-in climate, and not just the usual sunny days, but also the the desire (oddly) for more precipitation, they are looking at rainfall totals, what areas are experiencing drought conditions or worse, like dire drought concerns. Those are proving to be quality-of-life matters, certainly life-sustaining ones at some point...

As I type I am looking out over what would normally be Lake Anderson in Morgan Hill, CA. It's a reservoir actually, one that was drained for critical damn repairs, set to take a decade to finish (huge political fiasco). We were evacuated last year due to the fires in this area. Thankfully this year, no fires near us. The largest lake in the county (Santa Clara) is now gone. Missing the view is one thing, the recreation too, but losing the natural fire break and the water source is yet another...

I mentioned in some thread here, maybe a year or two back, about how many folks I know, neighbors, co-workers who had left California. A colleague's family member owns a U-Haul place and commented on the number of rentals leaving the state had kept increasing. We've since seen more data confirming the exodus.

The K-12 educational system is generally regarded as poor in California, usually ranked in the 40s. Several families told me that was a contributing reason, but also the aforementioned drought concerns, which they felt could be very long-lasting, and with that, apt to only get worse. Mentioned also were the intentional electrical blackouts; and the sorry state of affairs that leads to those being deemed prudent decisions. Funny thing, while no one mentioned our roads as a reason for leaving, many of them later said how much better the roads were in their new states. That prompted me to look, and California, according to the Federal Highway Administration, has 38% of its roads in poor condition. Only two states are worse. Not surprisingly, most, including those I know, left because of the cost-of-living expenses, which are relatively high. By most measures, California is in the top 3-5 of most expensive states. Coupled with state and local taxes, California is seemingly always near the top, money matters remain a huge reason why many leave.

Everyone I know who left California told me (I ask these folks the same types of questions) they would have never guessed they would leave someday. It was a gradual realization of the degradation of their quality of life here, that the cost-benefit-analysis eventually pointed them elsewhere. I'd say all of them were generally fine paying more here, for housing, gas, food, etc, even more in taxes, but that they would then expect, paying top dollar, they would receive more in return, a higher standard of living, better schools, roads, etc.

My best friend left a couple years ago. He too was born and raised in California. He's a financial planner, a damn good one too. He simply concluded that there was no good reason why such a rich, high-income state, one that taxes its residents at one of the highest rates, finds itself with one of the highest state debts, per capita and debt-per-income, while delivering relatively poor quality of life attributes.

The natural beauty of the state continues, thankfully. For me too, having beaches about 45 minutes to an hour away remains a reason to stay. That and mostly my parents being here are why I remain. Also, the "ease" of attending Cal games is a factor.

I like somewhat rural areas. West of Portland has my attention, still not far from the ocean, certainly more precipitation. Not too far from an international airport (PDX). Rural parts not far from Reno also, same for SLC…. Interestingly, I am also looking at real estate in Italy, not as an investment per se, but a home for us, somewhere to take the family for 2-3 months over the summers, maybe even during different times of the year. Also other European countries, like parts of Portugal or Croatia have my interest. Back to Italy, weather-wise, parts of it are California-like; which honestly is a bit too hot for me. I'd prefer a little further north. Looking about an hour away from Milan, base of the Alps, near some awesome lakes. For those willing to consider leaving their community or state, there's much more out there if willing to jump a little further…

You've got to pay to play.

I owned a house in Alabama. I bought it for $130K. I owned it a few years and sold for a loss at $105K. Today it is worth 50% more than I sold it for, but that's still just $150K.

Meanwhile, I took the proceeds from the sale and bought a house in the California desert which is now (10 years later) worth 4-5x what I paid for it.

For older people just looking for a place to retire then I guess it doesn't matter. Just move where you want to be and can afford.

However, for younger people looking to move to low cost states to save money...

Well, I think they are shooting themselves in the foot.

Sure, they have a beautiful large home in Wisconsin or Texas or wherever, but 10 years from now it's still going to be in Wisconsin or Texas or wherever.

California is premium real estate. It's prestige real estate. You're not going to own a home in most other states (with some exceptions) and gain hundreds of thousands of dollars in equity in just a decade or maybe two.

Now, maybe that's not important to you because quality of life matters more. I get that. However, imagine how much more you can buy in that other state if you had a few hundred thousand dollars more to spend on your dream retirement home.

Maybe it's all a big Ponzi scheme and someone will be left holding the bag, but I don't think so. People want to live here. Even most of the people leaving want to live here. They just can't afford to.

This isn't Northern Virginia, where people move to for high-paying jobs and then leave as soon as they can.

California has everything I'd ever want from the beaches to the mountains to the deserts and it is mostly filled with the kind of people I want to associate with. I wouldn't move to Texas or Florida if you offered to pay my mortgage there.




Great post. California Love!
Cal89
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dimitrig said:

Cal89 said:

With respect to the ideal location, more and more people are factoring-in climate, and not just the usual sunny days, but also the the desire (oddly) for more precipitation, they are looking at rainfall totals, what areas are experiencing drought conditions or worse, like dire drought concerns. Those are proving to be quality-of-life matters, certainly life-sustaining ones at some point...

As I type I am looking out over what would normally be Lake Anderson in Morgan Hill, CA. It's a reservoir actually, one that was drained for critical damn repairs, set to take a decade to finish (huge political fiasco). We were evacuated last year due to the fires in this area. Thankfully this year, no fires near us. The largest lake in the county (Santa Clara) is now gone. Missing the view is one thing, the recreation too, but losing the natural fire break and the water source is yet another...

I mentioned in some thread here, maybe a year or two back, about how many folks I know, neighbors, co-workers who had left California. A colleague's family member owns a U-Haul place and commented on the number of rentals leaving the state had kept increasing. We've since seen more data confirming the exodus.

The K-12 educational system is generally regarded as poor in California, usually ranked in the 40s. Several families told me that was a contributing reason, but also the aforementioned drought concerns, which they felt could be very long-lasting, and with that, apt to only get worse. Mentioned also were the intentional electrical blackouts; and the sorry state of affairs that leads to those being deemed prudent decisions. Funny thing, while no one mentioned our roads as a reason for leaving, many of them later said how much better the roads were in their new states. That prompted me to look, and California, according to the Federal Highway Administration, has 38% of its roads in poor condition. Only two states are worse. Not surprisingly, most, including those I know, left because of the cost-of-living expenses, which are relatively high. By most measures, California is in the top 3-5 of most expensive states. Coupled with state and local taxes, California is seemingly always near the top, money matters remain a huge reason why many leave.

Everyone I know who left California told me (I ask these folks the same types of questions) they would have never guessed they would leave someday. It was a gradual realization of the degradation of their quality of life here, that the cost-benefit-analysis eventually pointed them elsewhere. I'd say all of them were generally fine paying more here, for housing, gas, food, etc, even more in taxes, but that they would then expect, paying top dollar, they would receive more in return, a higher standard of living, better schools, roads, etc.

My best friend left a couple years ago. He too was born and raised in California. He's a financial planner, a damn good one too. He simply concluded that there was no good reason why such a rich, high-income state, one that taxes its residents at one of the highest rates, finds itself with one of the highest state debts, per capita and debt-per-income, while delivering relatively poor quality of life attributes.

The natural beauty of the state continues, thankfully. For me too, having beaches about 45 minutes to an hour away remains a reason to stay. That and mostly my parents being here are why I remain. Also, the "ease" of attending Cal games is a factor.

I like somewhat rural areas. West of Portland has my attention, still not far from the ocean, certainly more precipitation. Not too far from an international airport (PDX). Rural parts not far from Reno also, same for SLC…. Interestingly, I am also looking at real estate in Italy, not as an investment per se, but a home for us, somewhere to take the family for 2-3 months over the summers, maybe even during different times of the year. Also other European countries, like parts of Portugal or Croatia have my interest. Back to Italy, weather-wise, parts of it are California-like; which honestly is a bit too hot for me. I'd prefer a little further north. Looking about an hour away from Milan, base of the Alps, near some awesome lakes. For those willing to consider leaving their community or state, there's much more out there if willing to jump a little further…

You've got to pay to play.

I owned a house in Alabama. I bought it for $130K. I owned it a few years and sold for a loss at $105K. Today it is worth 50% more than I sold it for, but that's still just $150K.

Meanwhile, I took the proceeds from the sale and bought a house in the California desert which is now (10 years later) worth 4-5x what I paid for it.

For older people just looking for a place to retire then I guess it doesn't matter. Just move where you want to be and can afford.

However, for younger people looking to move to low cost states to save money...

Well, I think they are shooting themselves in the foot.

Sure, they have a beautiful large home in Wisconsin or Texas or wherever, but 10 years from now it's still going to be in Wisconsin or Texas or wherever.

California is premium real estate. It's prestige real estate. You're not going to own a home in most other states (with some exceptions) and gain hundreds of thousands of dollars in equity in just a decade or maybe two.

Now, maybe that's not important to you because quality of life matters more. I get that. However, imagine how much more you can buy in that other state if you had a few hundred thousand dollars more to spend on your dream retirement home.

Maybe it's all a big Ponzi scheme and someone will be left holding the bag, but I don't think so. People want to live here. Even most of the people leaving want to live here. They just can't afford to.

This isn't Northern Virginia, where people move to for high-paying jobs and then leave as soon as they can.

California has everything I'd ever want from the beaches to the mountains to the deserts and it is mostly filled with the kind of people I want to associate with. I wouldn't move to Texas or Florida if you offered to pay my mortgage there.




Good points dimitrig.

Feel the same way about California. While cleaning-out the garage shortly after starting retirement, I found notes I made from when I gave tours of the Cal campus to prospective students and their families. Much of the "sell" was California itself, the climate, diversity, the mountains, coastline, wine country, skiing, Silicon Valley, professional sports teams, their championships... I've always been a proud Californian. I'm less so now though.

Having spent time in other states, raw beauty of different types abound there too. The scenery / landscapes in Oregon is some of the most stunning I've seen and the National Parks in Utah, mesmerizing, seemingly never-ending. There of course other favorable attributes in those states, as well as others...

We bought this current home in Morgan Hill in 2013. If I'm to believe the likes of Zillow, we are up at least several hundred thousand dollars already. Heck, it might even be a double. So, I hear ya on the investment angle. But I know others have done quite well on properties purchased in OR, WA, NV, AZ, TX, FL too, possibly even better, percentage-wise.

A Cal roommate (we still keep-in-touch I'm happy to say), went into real estate. He keeps me up on the trends in various states, heck even globally. One of the reasons I'm looking at property in Italy... In CA, real estate appreciation rates over 5, 10 and 20 years: 32%, 83% and 175%. Damn impressive for sure.

Nevada, over 5 and 10 years, a fair amount better at 52% and 123%. Further back (20 years, actually 2000), it's a little less than CA at 134%.

Oregon's numbers too are comparable to California, a little better in the shorter time spans: 41%, 85% and 162%.

WA has appreciated very nicely compared to CA: 52%, 88% and 175%.

Even Arizona made for some nice gains, beating-out California over the past 5-10 years: 49%, 106% and 149%.

Texas looks to be on the lower end of destination states, but still pretty darn good gains, especially in recent years: 35%, 71% and 136%.

FL at 44%, 92% and 164% is CA-like also, again even better in the last 5-10 years.

Utah, not exactly considered a destination hotspot for those leaving CA: 53%, 91% and 147%. Very comparable to the gains seen in California, more so in recent years (5-10).

From data I've seen about 90% of those who left CA went to those states. If they purchased homes there, they likely did so for much less than a comparable home in CA. And their homes appreciated in value comparably to California ones, quite possibly better in the last 5-10 years. So, leaving CA is not exactly shooting oneself in the foot when comes to making money off their real estate purchases...

That aside, whether we like it or not, the perception of California has changed. I remember when on biz travel as a young man, when people learned that I'm a Californian, I vividly remember the fascination, interest and envy expressed. I remember some of those conversations in restaurants, airports, etc, some while wearing a Cal shirt or cap actually. Had to explain that we are not UCLA, lol. Those instances disappeared at some point, and then in a major way, like a 180 at times. Or from another angle, colleagues come-out to the Bay Area for an annual team event, some from RTP others from Europe and Asia. We spent two days in SF for some offsite fun and every visitor commented on the homelessness, the filth and stench, how pervasive it was too. Our European and Asian colleagues in particular were shocked. They had not seen such on previous travels to the US...

So, JW is on the hot seat I hear ;-)



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smh
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calumnus said:

I love the tropics, especially when the trade winds are blowing. We live on Guam and love it here, weather isn't as good as Hawaii (especially this time of year) but it is a fraction of the Hawaii cost, business opportunities abound, it isn't overcrowded, people are relaxed and friendly like Hawaii decades ago and we love traveling in and exploring Asia.

To each their own.
happens i enjoyed several uneventville hours on pleasant guam about 50 years ago, with a couple hundred other boys of a certain age. we'd been refused landing due to saigon airport being closed for stormy weather (rockets).

later noticed y'all solved the brown snake problem, hurrah!
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/two-thousand-mice-dropped-guam-parachute-kill-snakes-flna2d11685572

> They floated down from the sky Sunday 2,000 mice, wafting on tiny cardboard parachutes over Andersen Air Force Base in the U.S. territory of Guam.
But the rodent commandos didn't know they were on a mission: to help eradicate the brown tree snake, an invasive species that has caused millions of dollars in wildlife and commercial losses since it arrived a few decades ago.
>
> That's because they were dead. And pumped full of painkillers.
The unlikely invasion was the fourth and biggest rodent air assault so far, part of an $8 million U.S. program approved in February to eradicate the snakes and save the exotic native birds that are their snack food.
UrsusTexicanus
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This is a great thread. In my case I lived almost my entire life in the East Bay, (mostly Livermore and Fremont) and loved it. You can't beat the weather, scenery, close proximity to SF, Tahoe and of course Berkeley. But divorce caused some hard decisions. To save my future retirement I gave up my share of the equity in my condo. As an aside, my ex lost the condo to foreclosure a couple years later so she ended up with nothing.

Not long after the divorce, I started a relationship with a woman living outside Houston. When we decided to get married I had enough saved for down payment on a house down there but unfortunately Bay Area real estate was beyond what I could afford. So we bought a brand new custom home, 4 bedrooms, 2 bath, large lot for $220K. It's now appraised at a little over $300K. An equivalent house in most parts of the Bay Area would go for close to $2 million.

Downside is Texas politics at the state level. At the local level, which is where everything that matters is actually done, they're much more practical. There is the wretched heat and humidity in summer, though pleasant the rest of the year, and the occasional hurricane. But there are many attractions, such as San Antonio, Austin, Hill country and Piney Woods. Plus there's a large nature preserve just outside of my town. People for the most part are friendly and down to earth.

I'll probably be here the rest of my life, although my English born and raised wife daydreams about buying a fully restored 18th century English manor on a hundred acres in Yorkshire.

Now to stay on subject, is Wilcox on the hot seat?
71Bear
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UrsusTexicanus said:

This is a great thread. In my case I lived almost my entire life in the East Bay, (mostly Livermore and Fremont) and loved it. You can't beat the weather, scenery, close proximity to SF, Tahoe and of course Berkeley. But divorce caused some hard decisions. To save my future retirement I gave up my share of the equity in my condo. As an aside, my ex lost the condo to foreclosure a couple years later so she ended up with nothing.

Not long after the divorce, I started a relationship with a woman living outside Houston. When we decided to get married I had enough saved for down payment on a house down there but unfortunately Bay Area real estate was beyond what I could afford. So we bought a brand new custom home, 4 bedrooms, 2 bath, large lot for $220K. It's now appraised at a little over $300K. An equivalent house in most parts of the Bay Area would go for close to $2 million.

Downside is Texas politics at the state level. At the local level, which is where everything that matters is actually done, they're much more practical. There is the wretched heat and humidity in summer, though pleasant the rest of the year, and the occasional hurricane. But there are many attractions, such as San Antonio, Austin, Hill country and Piney Woods. Plus there's a large nature preserve just outside of my town. People for the most part are friendly and down to earth.

I'll probably be here the rest of my life, although my English born and raised wife daydreams about buying a fully restored 18th century English manor on a hundred acres in Yorkshire.

Now to stay on subject, is Wilcox on the hot seat?
No.
Cal89
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71Bear said:

UrsusTexicanus said:

This is a great thread. In my case I lived almost my entire life in the East Bay, (mostly Livermore and Fremont) and loved it. You can't beat the weather, scenery, close proximity to SF, Tahoe and of course Berkeley. But divorce caused some hard decisions. To save my future retirement I gave up my share of the equity in my condo. As an aside, my ex lost the condo to foreclosure a couple years later so she ended up with nothing.

Not long after the divorce, I started a relationship with a woman living outside Houston. When we decided to get married I had enough saved for down payment on a house down there but unfortunately Bay Area real estate was beyond what I could afford. So we bought a brand new custom home, 4 bedrooms, 2 bath, large lot for $220K. It's now appraised at a little over $300K. An equivalent house in most parts of the Bay Area would go for close to $2 million.

Downside is Texas politics at the state level. At the local level, which is where everything that matters is actually done, they're much more practical. There is the wretched heat and humidity in summer, though pleasant the rest of the year, and the occasional hurricane. But there are many attractions, such as San Antonio, Austin, Hill country and Piney Woods. Plus there's a large nature preserve just outside of my town. People for the most part are friendly and down to earth.

I'll probably be here the rest of my life, although my English born and raised wife daydreams about buying a fully restored 18th century English manor on a hundred acres in Yorkshire.

Now to stay on subject, is Wilcox on the hot seat?
No.
I concur on that "no". Given what it took to get the previous HC in that position, coupled with some notable conference wins, I think we are a ways off, at this point...
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71Bear
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After 2019, the arrow was pointing decidedly upward. Five games (yes, only five games!) later, many are calling for a change. Yikes! If this isn't typical Cal behavior, I don't know what is….

Rule 1 - regarding the thought of changing coaches. NEVER make a change unless you are ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN you can find a better coach. At this point, no one can convince me that Cal is in a position to find and, more importantly, sign a better coach to a contract. It just isn't that easy…

As for the current situation, Musgrave was a poor choice. Heck, we knew that before he was hired. He is a coaching vagabond who is trying to pound a square peg in a round hole.

RULE 2 - regarding schemes. Use a scheme that compliments the talent of your players. Do not try to make your players fit your scheme.

Musgrave has violated Rule 2. He has a solid (not star) QB and he is asking him to do things with which he isn't comfortable.

Wilcox needs to find an OC who embraces the modern collegiate game. Combining a new OC with Justyn Martin next year may be the potion that puts Cal in a position to succeed in the P12.

RULE 3 - Forget much of what you think you know about coaches. Yes, their job is to put players in a position to succeed but it is THE PLAYERS who make the difference on game day. Cal must recruit better players, particularly a game breaker on both sides of the ball. One guy who can make a play when needed most is the missing element in Cal's recruiting. Wilcox has to break through that barrier.

In the meantime, enjoy the fact that they are playing this year. Personally, I love Saturdays again. The TV and IPad (2 games at a time) are going from 9am to late night.

Trumpanzee
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My post sure made a wrong turn somewhere!!!! I almost feel like Wilcox is putting out all these post to divert us from his hot seat issue. Must have learned that from Trump....
Cal89
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71Bear said:

After 2019, the arrow was pointing decidedly upward. Five games (yes, only five games!) later, many are calling for a change. Yikes! If this isn't typical Cal behavior, I don't know what is….

Rule 1 - regarding the thought of changing coaches. NEVER make a change unless you are ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN you can find a better coach. At this point, no one can convince me that Cal is in a position to find and, more importantly, sign a better coach to a contract. It just isn't that easy…

As for the current situation, Musgrave was a poor choice. Heck, we knew that before he was hired. He is a coaching vagabond who is trying to pound a square peg in a round hole.

RULE 2 - regarding schemes. Use a scheme that compliments the talent of your players. Do not try to make your players fit your scheme.

Musgrave has violated Rule 2. He has a solid (not star) QB and he is asking him to do things with which he isn't comfortable.

Wilcox needs to find an OC who embraces the modern collegiate game. Combining a new OC with Justyn Martin next year may be the potion that puts Cal in a position to succeed in the P12.

RULE 3 - Forget much of what you think you know about coaches. Yes, their job is to put players in a position to succeed but it is THE PLAYERS who make the difference on game day. Cal must recruit better players, particularly a game breaker on both sides of the ball. One guy who can make a play when needed most is the missing element in Cal's recruiting. Wilcox has to break through that barrier.

In the meantime, enjoy the fact that they are playing this year. Personally, I love Saturdays again. The TV and IPad (2 games at a time) are going from 9am to late night.


Solid rules 71.

I'm with you on 2019 as my overall feeling about our direction was also optimistic. That said, the offense that year, JW's 3rd, was not improving, and some might assert the opposite even. It was producing fewer and fewer PPG. Yards per play in conference games, also a downward trend. Our pass completion % in 2019, conference games, sub 54%. That was by far the worst in the Pac and I believe the worst seasonal completion percentage for Cal in a very long time. Hard to have any type of meaningful drive continuity with so many incomplete passes...

Thereafter, a new OC and while only five games in, the offense thus far is equally inept, with no discernable improvement. Here are some popular offensive stats I pulled-together a few days ago, but was too busy to share...


2017

PPG = 27.8 / 26.4
Y/P 5.17 / 4.96
Rushing Average = 3.62 / 3.28
Passing Y/A = 6.5 / 6.4
Passing % = 58.4 / 58
Pass Rating = 121.36 / 119.91

2018

PPG = 21.5 / 20.3
Y/P = 4.91 / 4.94
Rushing Average = 4.2 / 4.28
Passing Y/A = 5.7 / 5.7
Passing % = 60 / 59.7
Pass Rating = 111.14 / 108.73

2019

PPG = 21.2 / 18.1
Y/P = 5.08 / 4.85
Rushing Average = 3.59 / 3.73
Passing Y/A = 7.0 / 6.2
Passing % = 55.9 / 53.6
Pass Rating = 127.07 / 111.10

2020 (pandemic-shortened season)

PPG = 20.3
Y/P = 5.17 / 4.96
Rushing Average = 3.43
Passing Y/A = 5.6
Passing % = 61.6
Pass Rating = 118.52

2021 (just one game)

PPG = 17
Y/P = 5.08
Rushing Average = 5.67
Passing Y/A = 4.7
Passing % = 65.8
Pass Rating = 108.35


++++++

I guess the bright spot from last week was the nearly 6 yards a carry. Nevada was a top 40 team last year against the run, so maybe some reason for hope... TCU was top 25 last year against the run, and last week against an inferior opponent, allowed just over 2 yards a carry. Hopefully the game is not as boring, and with the same results as the last time we played those guys...
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71Bear
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Trumpanzee said:

My post sure made a wrong turn somewhere!!!! I almost feel like Wilcox is putting out all these post to divert us from his hot seat issue. Must have learned that from Trump....
You asked if Wilcox is on the hot seat.

I said no. From my perspective, that is the end of the discussion. If the notion of hot seat was a viable issue, we could discuss the merits of the opposing points of view. However, it isn't.

If, on the other hand, you want everyone to agree with your position, just say so…
Big C
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If we don't have a winning overall record this year, Wilcox will be on the hot seat next season. The only way he would be on the hot seat at the end of this season would be some sort of complete collapse, player dissension, misconduct, etc.

Cal doesn't set the bar too high for football.
71Bear
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Big C said:


If we don't have a winning overall record this year, Wilcox will be on the hot seat next season. The only way he would be on the hot seat at the end of this season would be some sort of complete collapse, player dissension, misconduct, etc.

Cal doesn't set the bar too high for football.
Agree….
dimitrig
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Cal89 said:

dimitrig said:

Cal89 said:

With respect to the ideal location, more and more people are factoring-in climate, and not just the usual sunny days, but also the the desire (oddly) for more precipitation, they are looking at rainfall totals, what areas are experiencing drought conditions or worse, like dire drought concerns. Those are proving to be quality-of-life matters, certainly life-sustaining ones at some point...

As I type I am looking out over what would normally be Lake Anderson in Morgan Hill, CA. It's a reservoir actually, one that was drained for critical damn repairs, set to take a decade to finish (huge political fiasco). We were evacuated last year due to the fires in this area. Thankfully this year, no fires near us. The largest lake in the county (Santa Clara) is now gone. Missing the view is one thing, the recreation too, but losing the natural fire break and the water source is yet another...

I mentioned in some thread here, maybe a year or two back, about how many folks I know, neighbors, co-workers who had left California. A colleague's family member owns a U-Haul place and commented on the number of rentals leaving the state had kept increasing. We've since seen more data confirming the exodus.

The K-12 educational system is generally regarded as poor in California, usually ranked in the 40s. Several families told me that was a contributing reason, but also the aforementioned drought concerns, which they felt could be very long-lasting, and with that, apt to only get worse. Mentioned also were the intentional electrical blackouts; and the sorry state of affairs that leads to those being deemed prudent decisions. Funny thing, while no one mentioned our roads as a reason for leaving, many of them later said how much better the roads were in their new states. That prompted me to look, and California, according to the Federal Highway Administration, has 38% of its roads in poor condition. Only two states are worse. Not surprisingly, most, including those I know, left because of the cost-of-living expenses, which are relatively high. By most measures, California is in the top 3-5 of most expensive states. Coupled with state and local taxes, California is seemingly always near the top, money matters remain a huge reason why many leave.

Everyone I know who left California told me (I ask these folks the same types of questions) they would have never guessed they would leave someday. It was a gradual realization of the degradation of their quality of life here, that the cost-benefit-analysis eventually pointed them elsewhere. I'd say all of them were generally fine paying more here, for housing, gas, food, etc, even more in taxes, but that they would then expect, paying top dollar, they would receive more in return, a higher standard of living, better schools, roads, etc.

My best friend left a couple years ago. He too was born and raised in California. He's a financial planner, a damn good one too. He simply concluded that there was no good reason why such a rich, high-income state, one that taxes its residents at one of the highest rates, finds itself with one of the highest state debts, per capita and debt-per-income, while delivering relatively poor quality of life attributes.

The natural beauty of the state continues, thankfully. For me too, having beaches about 45 minutes to an hour away remains a reason to stay. That and mostly my parents being here are why I remain. Also, the "ease" of attending Cal games is a factor.

I like somewhat rural areas. West of Portland has my attention, still not far from the ocean, certainly more precipitation. Not too far from an international airport (PDX). Rural parts not far from Reno also, same for SLC…. Interestingly, I am also looking at real estate in Italy, not as an investment per se, but a home for us, somewhere to take the family for 2-3 months over the summers, maybe even during different times of the year. Also other European countries, like parts of Portugal or Croatia have my interest. Back to Italy, weather-wise, parts of it are California-like; which honestly is a bit too hot for me. I'd prefer a little further north. Looking about an hour away from Milan, base of the Alps, near some awesome lakes. For those willing to consider leaving their community or state, there's much more out there if willing to jump a little further…

You've got to pay to play.

I owned a house in Alabama. I bought it for $130K. I owned it a few years and sold for a loss at $105K. Today it is worth 50% more than I sold it for, but that's still just $150K.

Meanwhile, I took the proceeds from the sale and bought a house in the California desert which is now (10 years later) worth 4-5x what I paid for it.

For older people just looking for a place to retire then I guess it doesn't matter. Just move where you want to be and can afford.

However, for younger people looking to move to low cost states to save money...

Well, I think they are shooting themselves in the foot.

Sure, they have a beautiful large home in Wisconsin or Texas or wherever, but 10 years from now it's still going to be in Wisconsin or Texas or wherever.

California is premium real estate. It's prestige real estate. You're not going to own a home in most other states (with some exceptions) and gain hundreds of thousands of dollars in equity in just a decade or maybe two.

Now, maybe that's not important to you because quality of life matters more. I get that. However, imagine how much more you can buy in that other state if you had a few hundred thousand dollars more to spend on your dream retirement home.

Maybe it's all a big Ponzi scheme and someone will be left holding the bag, but I don't think so. People want to live here. Even most of the people leaving want to live here. They just can't afford to.

This isn't Northern Virginia, where people move to for high-paying jobs and then leave as soon as they can.

California has everything I'd ever want from the beaches to the mountains to the deserts and it is mostly filled with the kind of people I want to associate with. I wouldn't move to Texas or Florida if you offered to pay my mortgage there.




Good points dimitrig.

Feel the same way about California. While cleaning-out the garage shortly after starting retirement, I found notes I made from when I gave tours of the Cal campus to prospective students and their families. Much of the "sell" was California itself, the climate, diversity, the mountains, coastline, wine country, skiing, Silicon Valley, professional sports teams, their championships... I've always been a proud Californian. I'm less so now though.

Having spent time in other states, raw beauty of different types abound there too. The scenery / landscapes in Oregon is some of the most stunning I've seen and the National Parks in Utah, mesmerizing, seemingly never-ending. There of course other favorable attributes in those states, as well as others...

We bought this current home in Morgan Hill in 2013. If I'm to believe the likes of Zillow, we are up at least several hundred thousand dollars already. Heck, it might even be a double. So, I hear ya on the investment angle. But I know others have done quite well on properties purchased in OR, WA, NV, AZ, TX, FL too, possibly even better, percentage-wise.

A Cal roommate (we still keep-in-touch I'm happy to say), went into real estate. He keeps me up on the trends in various states, heck even globally. One of the reasons I'm looking at property in Italy... In CA, real estate appreciation rates over 5, 10 and 20 years: 32%, 83% and 175%. Damn impressive for sure.

Nevada, over 5 and 10 years, a fair amount better at 52% and 123%. Further back (20 years, actually 2000), it's a little less than CA at 134%.

Oregon's numbers too are comparable to California, a little better in the shorter time spans: 41%, 85% and 162%.

WA has appreciated very nicely compared to CA: 52%, 88% and 175%.

Even Arizona made for some nice gains, beating-out California over the past 5-10 years: 49%, 106% and 149%.

Texas looks to be on the lower end of destination states, but still pretty darn good gains, especially in recent years: 35%, 71% and 136%.

FL at 44%, 92% and 164% is CA-like also, again even better in the last 5-10 years.

Utah, not exactly considered a destination hotspot for those leaving CA: 53%, 91% and 147%. Very comparable to the gains seen in California, more so in recent years (5-10).

From data I've seen about 90% of those who left CA went to those states. If they purchased homes there, they likely did so for much less than a comparable home in CA. And their homes appreciated in value comparably to California ones, quite possibly better in the last 5-10 years. So, leaving CA is not exactly shooting oneself in the foot when comes to making money off their real estate purchases...

That aside, whether we like it or not, the perception of California has changed. I remember when on biz travel as a young man, when people learned that I'm a Californian, I vividly remember the fascination, interest and envy expressed. I remember some of those conversations in restaurants, airports, etc, some while wearing a Cal shirt or cap actually. Had to explain that we are not UCLA, lol. Those instances disappeared at some point, and then in a major way, like a 180 at times. Or from another angle, colleagues come-out to the Bay Area for an annual team event, some from RTP others from Europe and Asia. We spent two days in SF for some offsite fun and every visitor commented on the homelessness, the filth and stench, how pervasive it was too. Our European and Asian colleagues in particular were shocked. They had not seen such on previous travels to the US...

So, JW is on the hot seat I hear ;-)

I was trying to refrain from replying to this post, because it is off topic and I don't want to overwhelm the topic which is that JW will in fact be fired unless Cal does a lot better and SOON.

However, I just want to say that I appreciate the research you put into it, but I don't think you understand exactly what I meant when I said:

"However, for younger people looking to move to low cost states to save money...

Well, I think they are shooting themselves in the foot."

You talk in terms of percentages and in terms of percentages CA real estate has done well, but so have other places as you point out.

I was speaking in more absolute terms.

Most people that leave CA don't sell their $2M house to then buy a $2M house in TX or NV. They buy a somewhat cheaper house there to reduce cost of living.

Younger people seeking to buy a first house are probably going to spend less on the house they buy out-of-state than they would have in CA.

You say yourself: "If they purchased homes there, they likely did so for much less than a comparable home in CA."

What these people are not accounting for is that unless they are taking that savings and investing it somewhere else such as the stock market (which means they don't have it to spend and the short-term benefits are uncertain) then they will probably come out behind in the end.

Also, even though the CA real estate market can be volatile, it is a safer bet than most other real estate markets. Buy a house for $2M in Malibu and I can guarantee that over time it will be more desirable (and hence expensive) than a much larger, nicer house for $2M in even a nice location like Boulder or Austin. There is much less downside and a much larger upside to owning real estate in CA.

Like I said, though, quality of life means something. It's not all about making the largest possible returns. I am only speaking in terms of return on investment.

I just think that a lot of people leaving CA are not accounting for the value of CA real estate versus their new environs when making their calculations. I am sure some do, but many - especially the young ones who moved to CA as transplants and see greener grass elsewhere - are not taking it into consideration.

Stretching to buy a house in CA is almost always going to give a better FINANCIAL outcome (and I want to stress FINANCIAL) than comfortably affording a cheaper house somewhere else - even if real estate in that other location also appreciates at the same rate. The CA real estate is also less risky to own over the long-term owing the the demand and prestige of living in CA. Even if, as you say, there has been some shine taken off living in CA the reality is that any large drop in prices is going to eventually result in a flood of money back into the market to prop them back up.

If not, and you are underwater on your investment, then at least you live in CA. To me, that makes up for it.

I can't imagine being underwater in Milwaukee or Boise or Reno or Houston or (name lot of other places) and being glad about taking a loss to live there.

TL;DR : Living in CA is like having a forced savings plan in the form of your home. It has often outperformed the stock market. If you have discipline to invest your money in other ventures then it might make sense to leave CA. However, I think a lot of people see the savings on housing by moving elsewhere as disposable income and that is why they are shooting themselves in the foot.






calumnus
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calumnus said:

Cal89 said:

calumnus said:

Cal89 said:

calumnus said:

southseasbear said:

calumnus said:

71Bear said:

dmh65 said:

A lot of ex-Californians in Boise, maybe they can tell you. I know that I liked it there, though it was a brief visit. Beautiful place, nice people, affordable; what's not to like?
A number of things but I'll stick to #1 for now - too far from the ocean.

I lived for a short time in another state. I hated it, quit my job and moved back to the Bay Area. I wouldn't consider living anywhere that is more than an hour's drive to the ocean.


Agreed. I need to be near the ocean and have views of hills or mountains (so Florida does not work). I hate the cold except to visit. I love San Francisco, but it is too cold and gray too many days for my psyche. The East Bay is great. West LA and San Diego are great (though they all have their share of cold(ish) and gray too). Oregon, Washington, Idaho, BC, Colorado are all nice to visit but too far north for my taste.

Best for me is Hawaii and the Pacific islands. I love the tropics, especially when the trade winds are blowing. We live on Guam and love it here, weather isn't as good as Hawaii (especially this time of year) but it is a fraction of the Hawaii cost, business opportunities abound, it isn't overcrowded, people are relaxed and friendly like Hawaii decades ago and we love traveling in and exploring Asia.

To each their own.
Agree with a lot of this. I can't tolerate cold, wet, overcast. As I'm considering retirement, the search is on for a place significantly less expensive and crowded than LA. I would love to live in Palm Springs, but it is almost as expensive as LA and still has the oppressive California taxes. I love the tropics but Hawaii is too expensive. Thought of Guam but it seems so remote. (Is there a quality hospital there with a state of the art cancer center?) The Pacific Northwest is too wet and/or gloomy. Boise and Reno are too cold. Most likely we will be settling in the metropolitan areas of Las Vegas, Phoenix, or Tucson.


Guam is remote. Medical is so, so with a new hospital in the works. However for planned medical many go to the excellent but inexpensive medical tourism resorts in the Philippines.

My recommendation is take a look at Saipan In the CNMI for the beauty, weather and huge tax advantages for American tax payers. Just stay over 6 months a year to establish the CNMI as your tax residence.

A condo on a powder white sand beach with sunset views. Arrive after Christmas and stay through June.

That way you avoid mainland winter and avoid tropical rainy/heat/humidity/typhoon season. It gives you half the year to visit friends and family and attend Cal football games and MLB games. Maybe even just have a motor home on the Mainland? That mitigates the remoteness issue. Or travel the world. Or both.

CNMI: Medicare and Social security apply, no state tax, no inheritance tax, no sales tax, no property tax (though you cannot own land). No US income tax per se.

Income taxes are at same rates as IRS, but payable to the local government with most of it rebated back:
$0 to $20,000. 90% of tax rebated
$20k to $100k 70% of tax rebated
Everything over $100k 50% of tax rebated
You can underpay, anticipating your rebate and pay a 4% penalty.

So you can live off of your social security, 401K or IRA, or invest in a CNMI business, which can be passed on to your heirs tax free.


That's really good info, thanks for sharing those details.

Really happy for you. Seems you found your Utopia. What's the comparative cost of groceries there? I realize no The Home Depots and the like, a good thing, but are there hardware stores?


We actually have a Home Depot, which we have supported more than I'd like in our refurbishment (we bought a fixer upper with ocean and mountain views backing up on jungle and a stream for $75k on Craigslist). A friend of mine owns a large hardware store that competes with HD mostly by buying direct from China so we buy from him whenever possible.

Groceries vary. The main local chain, Payless, (nicknamed "Pay more, get less) is a lot like a Safeway. There are things like breakfast cereal or mainland milk in cartoons I never buy. California produce, especially orgainics, is relatively expensive. Previously frozen meat (beef and chicken) and eggs are cheap. Best deal is fresh local fish. Tuna sashimi, wahoo or marlin caught yesterday for less than $6 a pound. We eat a lot of mackerel from Japan and Korea or milkfish from the Philippines.

There is a Washington based warehouse style retailer, Cost-U-Less, that is like a smaller Costco. But I've written former Cal basketball player Richard Chang, president of Costco Asia, to try to convince him to open one here. Japanese retailer Don Quijote is opening soon.

There are a lot of Korean grocery stores (Kim Chee Market is just down the hill from my house). Anything imported to Guam is duty free, but has to confirm to US labeling laws. So packaged produce from Korea, canned and packaged food from the Phillipines is huge. Tetra packs of milk and cheese from New Zealand are cheap. Really popular are boxes of Danish pork ribs for BBQ. Importers just attach labels if they didn't have one. I am working to expand offerings from Europe (especially cheeses and alcohol) and Mexico as part of my business.

We also eat alot of the food that just grows on our property: papayas (ripe and green), mangos, coconuts, bananas, bread fruit, guavas, apple guavas, custard apples, figs, star fruit, moringa, sweet potatoes and sweet potato greens (the latter replaces spinach and kale in stir fries, saags and smoothies).

Property tax is $50 per year. Electricity is $150 a month running AC. Water and sewer is $20. Solar panels are cheap as there are no tariffs.

By far our largest expense is dining out. So if we ever needed to economize that would be it.

Thank you very much. Most helpful.

Lastly, what are the options for internet access out there?


Guam has super fast internet, all the transpacific cables go through Guam, plus there are two and soon to be three US military bases (I did forget to add to the above that veterans can shop at the base exchange and have the Navsl hospital for medical).

My home cable internet provider is Docomo (a Japanese company), we don't purchase the cable TV package and I don't know the cost off hand. My cellular internet is through my phone service, IT&E, a Philippines based company. My cell is about $100 a month for my IPhone and unlimited data and unlimited calls to the Mainland.

The CNMI has an internet connection to Guam. A few years ago the cable broke and they had no internet for a month, which disrupted banking, atms, credit card, etc. it has since been repaired and a second line added.




One other thing. The CNMI has only had 258 COVID cases and only 2 deaths.

They shut down early, wear masks regularly, put in a quarantine like Guam did but with no Air Force base back door. They also instituted the mass rapid test kits from Korea. They are now over 80% vaxxed and are opening up travel with Korea and Japan.
Cal89
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Thank you both for your thoughtful responses and follow-up. I just noticed now...

dimitrig, agreed on this sidebar being wildly off topic. Understood, I'll leave at that, for various reasons.

Calumnus, glad to hear on the pandemic's impact out there. Taiwan did very well also and no one responded faster than them, no one was aware sooner than them also which of course helps a ton. They were trying their darnedest to tell the world in late Dec 2019. Being an island also has its benefits of course. Did my thesis research out there, heck even saw my future wife at the time, not in-person, but oddly on TV. She was a singer... This thread can even go more off-topic!

I do my best to not call it "COVID" as I'm very much aware of China's (CCP) heavy lobbying for such a name; as compared to one with a logical SARS reference (virus = SARS-CoV-2). SARS, about twenty years ago, was a major embarrassment for China... Between my deep connections in TW, a former colleague being in Wuhan, being an avid China-watcher since my '89 Cal graduation (Tiananmen Square inspired), and a legal/investigative career (retired now) that had focused on IP theft and counterfeit goods, I was aware of this virus before it was even discussed in the States, made the news. I taught English in TW while doing my thesis research, including at a prominent hospital, and I still keep-in-touch with a few of the docs and administrators.

Great to wake-up with a win under our belts. Although not nearly as satisfying as hoped, I'll take it, because I have no choice but to... That said, I don't believe JW is on any hot seat at this time.

Sig test...
 
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