Would love advice from those who made a move to another state (And anyone from Arizona)...

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by Chickerdoodle13, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    Hey guys! Haven't been on as much lately because life has gotten pretty busy, but I thought this may be the perfect place to do some research about moving to another state.

    I recently applied to vet schools and I'm waiting to hear back from them. If I get into vet school, I will be heading off to school this coming August. However, if I am not accepted to any of the schools I applied to, a good friend and I have been discussing the possibility of moving to another state. We have both fallen in love with Arizona and would love to move there for a little bit to get to know the state better. We currently live in New Jersey, so this would be a pretty significant move, but something I've wanted to do for a while. My friend and I have discussed living as room mates a few times, but it just hasn't been the right time for me to move out of my parents' house due to the fact that I wanted to continue my education. If I don't get into vet school, I will not be able to re-apply until next October for entry in August 2014, so that gives me an entire year. I should find out for sure if I've gotten in by around March.

    Anyway, we are just in the very preliminary part of our research and I wanted to hear from anyone who has made a move like this. I would also love to hear from anyone who lives in Arizona already, as I would love advice as to the best places to consider, and if moving that way is even do-able at all. I visited in the summer a few years ago and fell in love. My friend spent a good portion of the summer house-sitting there. I would rather not live in a city, but would be more than happy in a suburb outside of a city. Our rent budget would be about $700-$1000 a month. Also, we both have a bachelors and would be looking for work, so we definitely need to make sure there are job opportunities in the area we move to.

    My main questions for those who have moved would be when did you start looking for jobs in the area you moved to? Did you begin your search before the actual move and set up interviews for when you actually got there? Did you save enough before moving so that you could pay rent/bills while searching for a job? How much do you recommend saving before making a move like this? We are currently planning on living there for at least twelve months and we would plan on moving there in July or August to give ourselves plenty of time to save a nice amount of money. We are both very money-conscious and budget well.

    I've already been given some wonderful advice. I realize I need to be prepared to pay for rent in the event my friend has to leave for an un-forseen reason. I also think the hardest part for me will be the homesickness. I did go away to college, but I still visited home every six weeks or so. I'm fairly certain being away for a year will be a bit tougher, but I don't give up easily so I'm fairly certain I could do it. Homesickness for my friend is not as much of an issue. She's done a lot of travelling and spent over three months in Europe for school. I feel like now is the time to travel and have new experiences though. We don't have boyfriends, pets to worry about, or children. We also have the option to move back home if things don't work out after the year is up. I've been itching to get out of New Jersey for a long time now and the time between graduating college and starting vet school may be perfect. My parents are very supportive of the idea, as they would like to get out of the state as well.

    I would love any and all advice. It's a scary and exciting prospect, but it makes it easier to hear stories and advice from other people who have done the same.
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Well, first thing, I hope that you get admission to vet school. Have you been to Phoenix in the summer? Some hate it - others love it. [​IMG]

    Good luck at whatever you choose.
  3. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    Thanks Sourland! I hope I get in as well. Looking at employment prospects these past few days, it really seems like I will have to go back to school no matter what. There really are so few things a person can do with just a bachelors these days!

    My family actually visited Arizona in the summer a few years back. I found it to be VERY hot in Scottsdale (It was around 120 that day) but it wasn't too bad in the shade. Phoenix was hot, but I LOVED the dry climate. I don't think I would mind it too much. I'm not a fan of New Jersey's humidity, but I don't really mind the heat of the summer all that much. I definitely would rather hot weather over cold, snowy weather though!
  4. punk-a-doodle

    punk-a-doodle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 15, 2011
    Hey, I just moved to Texas four days ago. We would not have been able to make the move this early if a friend had not offered to rent out half her home, and welcome all of our many pets to boot. We had researched this area thuroughly, and had taken a road trip earlier this year to scope it out in real life. Another thing that helped is my husband took on a job that he can do from any location. I was then able to just quit my job, and now I can start looking for work here at a more relaxed pace. If that hadn't happened, I would have liked at least one of us to have secured a job in TX before moving (make SURE you can make your interviews if gong that route). If that hadn't happened, well, it would have been nerve wracking, but the job market is good enough in this area that we probably would have been alright. With a secured job, and a secured home, we saved up $4,000 for this move. That is probably way more than what we needed to save, and have not used nearly that much, so still have plenty of emergency funds. We moved with a moving van, which is not something we've done in the past, but we have furniture we actually want to keep now. Moving everything in your car costs a lot less. That money is completely separate from our 'save up for a future place of our own' account. If we were planning to buy immediately, that would not have been anywhere near enough. You will need to factor in security deposits (sometimes two months rent up front) and the length of your drive.

    We are blissfully out in the cows-in-the-road country right now, but just 12 minutes away is a magnificent, huge selection, one stop grocery shop for our hipster foodie needs, and we have a major city just an hour away. I adore the country life, but I also love that we don't have to jump in immediately on providing all food for ourselves and that we still have the city life close by to go to concerts, drink coffee out of ridiculously tiny cups, join clubs covering topics only people with too much time on their hands could think of, and so forth. Rent can be quite high in some areas. I love this area, because rent and cost of living is low, but it is so close to things like good job opportunities. What is important to you? What can you live with and without?

    My husband and I are both double majors from private colleges. We have moved and found jobs with our degrees before, but you often have to work in unrelated fields and/or well under your degree level and pay level. We have faced the challenge before of being "too qualified" for job A and "not qualified enough" for job B, leaving us with Option C (no employment). Also, the longer a gap between jobs...the uglier it gets trying to find a new one. It is much easier to find a new job if you are recently, or especially currently, employed. Community college and certifications have actually started serving us much better than our degrees ever did.

    Am I happy we made the move? You have no idea. I love the people and culture out here, found out many of our friends have moved to this state, and have never lived on an acre til now. I've been having the time of my life clearing out saplings and weeds, planning a garden, converting an old horse shed to a chicken coop, replacing an old fence section, etc. we moved to the last state we lived in for school reasons and hated it. I finally feel inspired to work on my projects again, where as the last state we lived in drained us both. A move based on what you know you want can do wonders!

    Sounds like you are ready and well prepared to me. Good luck with school, and your possible move!
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2012
  5. dewey

    dewey Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 9, 2010
    north of eternity
    I love AZ...have lived here about 50 years now. [​IMG] The valley is basically one big town with several different city names, lol. There's a mix of great, good, and bad areas in each town. Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Glendale are convenient to most things and areas. Commuting back and forth from those towns to outer towns like Tempe, Mesa, Chandler, Gilbert, etc., can be a real bear, but 30-60 minute commutes to work are fairly typical from any valley town. A lot of people choose to commute to the "bedroom communities" in the smaller burbs of the far north areas of Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Glendale and some of the far north-westerly burbs.

    In the valley cities, rents of $700-$800 for 2 bedrooms will typically be located in not so great areas. $900-$1000 rents will typically either be in not so great areas or will be in the farther out areas. There's pockets of nice blocks even in the worst areas, so finding a decent place can be quite a challenge without knowing the areas. One of my friends rents a 2nd story 450sf 1 bd/1 ba apartment in a decent far north-east Phoenix area for $725. Another rents a nice 1100sf 2 bd/2 ba apartment for $680 but in a really bad area. Another rents a 1200sf in a decent area for $1100. ...My family has rental properties scattered around the valley and we rent those out from $950 and up...I think you should be able to find a decent rental in a decent area within your budget.

    Good luck whatever you decide to do...moving to a new place and exploring all new things is exciting! Plus, as you said, just in case you've got a safety net that many never have, so I say go for it! [​IMG]
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2012
  6. Hi,
    My husband and I moved from Southern California to an isolated area in AZ. We live on 40 acres of sand and trees. We are both retirement age and didn't have to worry about looking for jobs. We live near the NM border at an elevation of about 6500 ft. We do get some snow in the winter but basically the winters are mild. If we get 6" of snow it could be gone in 3 or 4 days.

    You can buy acreage out here pretty cheap but there are draw backs. We have no city services and live off the grid. The nearest gas station to us is 30 miles away and the nearest WalMart is 75 miles away. We have to make our own power and haul our water, cook and heat with propane, use a clothesline to dry the laundry, go to the PO for our mail, and take our trash to the landfill. Our TV and internet are both via satellite and our phone is a cell phone.

    If you don't want a big city area, check out Concho, AZ. It isn't far from Show Low, AZ where the jobs would be. Or even Show Low or Snowflake, AZ if interested in the area around here. Both areas aren't far from interstate highway 40.

    I'm not sure what city in AZ you were thinking of, but I would never live in the Valley, also called the Phoenix area. In our area the air quality is better and we don't even need to have our cars smog tested. Car tags and insurance is cheaper here also. And it is much cooler than the Valley.

    We love our place out here in the middle of nowhere. The stars at night, the peace and quiet, no visible neighbors. I grow a veggie garden and have chickens. (Used to have horses).

    You could check The White Mountain Independent newspaper on line to find jobs and rentals in this area if you're interested.

    If you want more info on this area just let me know.

    Good luck,
    Cheryl the offgridhermit
  7. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    Hi Cheryl!

    I forgot I had even made this post! Goes to show how much can change in such a short time span! I ended up getting into vet school and started in August. I had to put my Arizona plans on hold for now, but I would still like to move there when I am done with school. Hopefully at that point my job prospects will be better and I can afford a nice place!

    My parents on the other hand recently put up our house for sale and they are looking to do the same thing you did! They are looking at Prescott and surrounding areas. My dad has been out a handful of times. I think the plan is to sell our house and buy land so they can rent while they build a house. So maybe I'll be able to call Arizona "home" sooner than four years from now!
    1 person likes this.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by