West Coast Living – Yes It Really Is That Much Better

West coast living is better

Let's be honest. The West Coast is the best coast. West Coast living is far superior to East Coast living, especially during the winter time. I've lived on both coasts for over a decade and am giving you guys the honest truth.

Despite an honest attempt to search for more great things about the East Coast in a dedicated post, several readers actually proceeded to bash the West Coast instead! What's up with that?

Some curiously mentioned that the East Coast is fantastic because the horrendous weather for half the year makes the other six months so wonderful.

Ummm, that's like saying you appreciate your right hand more because you chopped off your left hand! Wouldn't you rather have both hands?

The only positive takeaway from the comments I agree with is the cluster of historically significant cities within a several hours drive. Other than that, nobody came up with any stand out reasons other than the six I provided as to why East Coast living is great.

Given that the West Coast was attacked, I feel it's important to stand up and defend our honor!

Why The West Coast Is Better Than The East Coast

* Beautiful Weather. With blue skies and sunshine, we have wonderful beaches, healthier, and happier people.  There's a reason why movie stars and other celebrities work and live on the West Coast. Why do you think there are so many songs about “California Dreaming”?

* Entrepreneurial Opportunities. Google, YouTube, Yahoo, eBay, Apple, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, Amazon and many more innovative, life changing companies are all based on the West Coast. How many self-made 35-year old or younger mega-millionaires or billionaires can you name from the East Coast? Not many.

* Access To Asia. Asia is where the growth is and not Europe. Travel to Asia is quicker, and doing business with Asia is therefore easier. When it's 8am in China, it's still only 5pm here on the West Coast. Communicating at 8pm EST is no fun, and therefore doesn't happen as often.

* Vacation Paradise. Hawaii is just a quick and direct 4.75 hour flight away! Hawaii is seriously one of the top 5 greatest places on Earth to live, and anybody who tells you otherwise has never experienced the island. Besides Hawaii, there is Tahiti, Bora Bora, Samoa, and of course many wonderful vacation spots in Asia.

* World Class Winter Sports. Lake Tahoe and Whistler have 11,000 feet high mountain resorts whereas the East Coast has icy Killington in Vermont and the Catskills in New York. I've been to all four places, and I can tell you there really is NO comparison between West Coast and East Coast skiing/snowboarding. Can you imagine getting dumped on with no mountains to ski down? That's like living on top of a hill with no view! There is no point.

More Reasons Why The West Coast Is Great

* More Peaceful People. A large reason why many people are on the East Coast is because of a job opportunity or family. As a result, resentment builds for the region because they wouldn't be there otherwise. This is a recipe for some very grumpy people. Meanwhile, a large reason why many people live out West is for a better lifestyle as well as job opportunities and family. Because people are living a better lifestyle, you have a much more pleasant social environment.

* Fewer Crooks. Do you think it's a coincidence that some of the biggest crooks in America such as Bernie Madoff, Elliott Spitzer, Dennis Kozlowski (Tyco), and countless dirty politicians are all based on the East Coast? Of course not. I'll leave it up to you to figure out why.

* Healthier People. Because the lifestyle is much better on the West Coast, there are much happier and healthier people in places like California. The healthier you are, the less you have to pay for health insurance and crucial life insurance if you have dependents.

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* More Diversity And Inclusion. With a less homogenous population on the southern portion of the east coast, it's natural to have more racism. But at least for me, racism helped give me the drive and strength to achieve financial freedom by 34. Although, the Northeast is definitely pretty diverse nowadays.

Even More Reasons Why The West Coast Is #1

* Lower Home Maintenance Costs. There's no such thing as freezing pipes bursting on the West Coast. There isn't snow, hail, and rain storms crushing the integrity of your house. As a result, maintenance and home insurance costs are much lower. Make sure you re-shop your homeowner's insurance every 1-2 years as well. With the cost of building materials going up and home prices going up, you need the right amount of coverage.

* Lower Power Bills. There's never a need to use air conditioning to cool or heat yourself in many places on the West Coast given the moderate temperatures. Opening a window is all you need during the summer to get that draft going. Adjusting thermostats is a foreign concept! There is much less to spend on home maintenance as well.

West Coast Living Is So Much Better Than Anywhere Else

* Fewer Auto Accidents. With better weather comes less accidents. Less accidents mean lower auto insurance prices. And the more you can save on expenses, the faster your wealth can grow. Shop around and compare quotes every year or two to save money on car insurance as well.

* Environmental Movement. People love the Earth out here. California was the first to ban smoking in public places, and the state is a pioneer in recycling and emissions standards.  We are the home of organic cuisine (Chez Panesse Alice Waters), Tesla Motors (electric car company), as well as thousands of tree huggers!  If you love the environment and want to help save the world, you'll love the West Coast.

* Great Athletics. The Golden State Warriors won the 2015 NBA Championship, almost won the 2016 NBA Championship, won again in 2017, again in 2018, and then again in 2022, baby! Meanwhile, the San Francisco Giants won three world series in five years. The LA Lakers won the 2020 NBA championship. And the LA Dodgers won the 2020 World Series. During the winter, I can play golf on Saturday in 70 degree weather, and drive 2.5-3 hours on Sunday to go snowboarding in 2 feet of powder. We're truly blessed with amazing athletics.

* Watching The Sunset Into The Ocean. If you live on the East Coast, you'll never see the beautiful sunset into the ocean.

* Pride. If you live on the West Coast you won't have to make sensationalist statements such as “Florida will be torn apart in the next Tornado”, “It's so humid in Washington DC you can go swimming in your own sweat“, “You'll die early because you'll never want to go outside,” “Be careful about the next enemy siege,” and other ridiculous statements to make yourself feel better about yourself. You don't have to disparage like some on the East Coast will do about West Coasters because you're already living the dream.

Related: Migrating To California For A Better Life

The West Coast Is The Best Coast

I know I don't have to give any reasons why the West Coast is a much better place to live because it's pretty obvious. It's like wondering whether Bill Gates is rich, duh.

From a financial standpoint, you need to make more money to afford a home if you live in cities like San Jose, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Seattle. However, you can also make a lot more money in these cities as well. Income and investment potential are unlimited, whereas you can only save so much.

Amount of income needed by the top 50 American cities to afford a typical home

As you can see from the list, the highest income requirements are largely from cities on the west coast. The reasons are because of better lifestyle, better weather, better food, better entertainment, and better income and investment opportunities. The artificial intelligence boom is making plenty of people living in San Francisco and San Jose extremely wealthy.

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It's Easy To Bash The West Coast

I give reasons anyway to highlight to those who bash the West Coast incessantly what they're missing. It's easy to look down upon those out West if you've never experienced living out here.

But as someone who has lived on both coasts for over 10 years, the choice is obvious. Perhaps this post will make things even more obvious!

If you are miserable out East, do more than just make fun of the West Coast. Do something to change your life by moving! The settlers did so hundreds of years ago, and so can you in much quicker a time.

Have no fear in seeking a better life. You deserve it!

Related: The Worst States To Live In For Work And Life

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You can live on the West Coast and invest in Midwest properties with much higher cap rates without having to live through the bitter cold.

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West Coast Living Is Better is a Financial Samurai original post. I've lived in San Francisco, California since 2001 and it is simply one of the best cities in America and the world to live and make money.

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378 thoughts on “West Coast Living – Yes It Really Is That Much Better”

  1. Growing up in the burbs of Los Angeles, California, I have to say it is a difficult place to leave. I travel frequently to Asia & Europe and our Japan Airlines pilot flew us to Los Angeles from Tokyo in 8 hours and 25 minutes. Traveling to Europe from Los Angeles is approximately 10 hours. I truly think Los Angeles and San Francisco are indeed positioned in perfect regions of the world. Traveling to Tahiti and Australia is also 8 and 10 hours approximately. Thus, I agree with Sam. Of course, Hawaii is our little neighbor not too far away.

    I will say Los Angeles is not the best place to visit as a tourist. It is much too large to truly get a true sense. The Combined Statistical Area (CSA) according to the US Bureau is 34,000 sq. miles. Making it the largest CSA in the US at least. A lot of LA receives bad publicity in the news, but I have to admit, I am not for homelessness, but in LA, the homeless have multiple areas to station themselves and live. That is a rarity in other cities. Plus, they can survive in LA with our weather.

    We also have a forest called the Angeles National Forest; it is approximately 700,000 acres. It is larger than many US cities alone. Majority of Los Angeles is nature, such as mountains, beaches, desert, and multiple vast valleys that are uninhabited. I highly doubt most Americans and even Californians know these areas. I am also speaking more of the county, but even the exurbs of the county.

    Also, there is not another international city near Los Angeles. Vegas is 4 hours away by car, San Francisco is 7-8 hours away by car and San Diego is really just an extension of us. Also, I would argue that our economic power even lands us into the Baja California area. That is another 700 miles of land. Whereas, NYC has New Haven, Jersey, Pittsburgh, and many other cities that are clustered near it. Making it a better place to visit short-term, but not living for long-term. A lot of the economic power is collective in nature. LA is truly on her own.

    We also have the largest ports in the US by tonnage. I am barely surfacing the natural resources we have. Yes, NYC is a place of capital. Yet, if there is an apocalypse, LA is a better place to be with the natural resources, such as farms, vast land, etc.

    Okay, I think I made my point. lol.

  2. Joe Bicoastal

    I’ve been back and forth 3 times coast to coast and understand the differences very well. I moved to LA from NY in the very best days of LA and my father was a Dodgers executive. Couldn’t have been better. But, serious business opportunities were scarce there when I finished college, and I went straight to NY, which set me up well for the rest of my life. Then, San Francisco, a fabulous city with year-round air conditioning outdoors. Anyone will tell you it has deteriorated so markedly that between unpunished crime, homelessness and a 2-bedroom house for $2 million, life can be complicated an unrewarding.
    I went back to NY again for yet more powerful career advancement. I have 2 acres and 8 bedrooms in Connecticut in a town with no crime, beaches and the top schools anywhere, which would cost $10 million around San Francisco(or, to be nice, only $6 million if you looked hard). Do I really care about being 25-30 degrees in the winter? I can go anywhere I want for those months, but home is fine, it’s really nothing.
    I expected to want to return to San Francisco after a few years, but it’s been 30 years of productive business dealings in the greatest business marketplace in the world, NYC. Silicon Valley flattened a long time ago, you can still do well there but you have to look hard and get lucky with your choice. Many more companies have gone down than moved upward, you can name dozens of them.

    1. Have you ever lived in San Francisco? If so, when and for how long?

      The amount of wealth creation has been enormous. And now with AI, the capital wave continues again. The media and the far right love to hate on San Francisco, especially near elections years. But the best places to live and worst are often the most hate because they are expensive and hard to afford for many people.

      Nobody hates on Connecticut for a reason. And a lot of folks want to be able to enjoy the great outdoors all year, not just 8 months a year.

      1. Agree that we all appreciate different lifestyles, and, personally, we definitely enjoy certain parts of the East Coast, among other places in our beautiful country, but, as a large family of native Californians who have lived all over the world, we’ve always kept our homes in Malibu and elsewhere, and plan to continue to enjoy all of the best CA has to offer.

    2. LA is probably the most talentless city in America. It’s all about who you know and certain industries have no skills. LA’s job ranking is 45th while San Jose is second. NYC’s is around 20th. Also SF ranks 4th and San Jose ranks 2nd behind only Ann Arbor as Americas most educated cities.

      There is no venture capital in the world like that of Silicon Valley and Nyc ‘s silicon alley is mostly bays area companies. Nowhere in the world has more startups to this day than the Internet entire Bay Area. NYC has the most segregated schools in America and some of the lost segregated neighborhoods in America.

      Alibaba has the largest b2b marketplace in the world and that’s why China is passing USA in everything imaginable. Nyc subway is billons in debt the USA’s infrastructure was downgraded to a C- in which nyc’s infrastructure is a D. I understand the bay area has a homeless problem but not in San Jose. Nyc has a growing homeless problem as well. Only 3 places in the world that you can surf and ski in one day in two different climates and one of those places is the Bay Area nowhere else.

      The PH levels of the east coast also make it that all vegetables and fruits are tainted. That’s a whole other topic. There’s lost more we can go over when you respond.

  3. This article is like everything on the west coast, all superficial with no real substance. Ive lives on the west coast for over 10 years now and I’m a very active person. Next week I’m moving back East.

    The west coast is killing off the middle class, you’re either living in an overpriced home drinking margaritas for breakfast and driving away in you’re 50k Tesla or you’re homeless with a full time job riding a used bike you got on craigslist.

    Entrepreneurship is basically dead because the taxes are so high you can barely break even while giant corporations are catered to causing the huge wealth gap with people who are completely dependent on their employer. On the east coast operating costs are much cheaper and in my experience the people are more honest. I run a business on the west coast and I spend a lot more time dealing with people not paying their bills or ghosting me on a deal. Culturally, people on the east coast are more reliable and have more integrity, maybe thats just my perception but it’s pretty eye opening in contrast.

    Sure, I love the quick access to nature and the amazing mountains but all the trails are packed all the time. On the east coast trails might be another 20 mins further away but there are definitely lots of great hikes and better hunting and fishing and it’s much more secluded.You see a lot more wildlife and fewer people clogging up the trails.

    And the biggest difference is the people. The west coast claims to be diverse but that couldn’t be further from the truth. The population on the east coast is far more diverse and more importantly it’s more diverse in thought. People aren’t afraid to speak their mind on the east coast where as people on the west coast seem to have constant pressure to adhere to what others deem exceptable. The west coast is full of people “trying to make it” where the east coast is full of people who are just happy living a modest lifestyle rather than trying to make it big. But even a modest lifestyle on the east coast can get you a nice house and a vacation home in the mountains or down by the shore.

    Sure the weather changes, there are four complete seasons on the east coast and for a lot of people that beats the long crappy winters in the northwest or the singular season in the southwest. Plus who doesn’t like a good rain storm or big snow every now and then, the weather is seriously one of the things I miss most about the East Coast.

    The east coast is also riddled with farmers markets and outdoor activities. Growing up on the east coast I never ate store bought meat or produce untill I was 20 years old because my parents only bought food from the market or sourced it directly from the farmer. On the west coast everything is a about marketing and everyone is just trying to build some sort of health brand so they can afford their crappy apartment. They gotta buy the new Lululemon leggings for their upcoming hike so they can look good for their Instagram post and be an influencer but on the East Coast people eat healthy because they can and are cool with just wearing a pair of blue jeans and are cool just turning off their phone while they enjoy their day off from work since they don’t gotta work 7 days a week to pay the mortgage on their 1700 square foot house on a 1/3rd acre lot, because you can actually afford to live that way unless you live in NYC or something.

    In any case I’m sure plenty of people love the west coast but honestly after living out here for so long it’s just abundantly clear that the east coast has so much more to offer and you don’t gotta be wealthy to really enjoy it.

    1. Roxi Connell

      I grew up in Midwest and lived in CA 20 years, and for 30 years served clients on Wall Street, so plenty of time spent working on the East Coast. Had to return to Midwest to help aging parent and while I agree that Cal has many man-made (ei, politician-created) problems, for me, the weather on the West Coast makes up for EVERYTHING. In addition to the huge increase in heating and cooling costs in Midwest and East coast, all it takes is ONE unfortunate episode on the ice, either on foot or in a vehicle, and your life and health could change in an instant for the worst! As an athletic adult, I had two serious falls on the ice the first two years back here, and fortunately there were no other vehicles nearby when my car slid into a 180. As for the people, no one friendlier than midwesterners, but finding people who actually have interests beyond their local area is rare.

      Just an aside…. “Don’t gotta”? Is that from your east coast education?

  4. The entire west coast is turning into a gigantic homeless encampment. I grew up on the East Coast, moved to LA and then San Francisco, and moved back a few months ago. East Coast towns don’t tolerate parks filled with tents, needles and garbage. They don’t tolerate gangs of kids shoplifting to the point where a big chain like Walgreens is closing more than a dozen stores. They don’t ignore fentanyl dealers freely plying their wares on the street. People aren’t attacked by drug addled lunatics. This stuff is happening even in the wealthiest parts of California. The weather is better in California but the quality of life is long gone here but can still be found in small East Coast towns amd suburbs (and you’ll pay way less for it, and have lower taxes).

    1. Louis Dandrea

      Their Was a time when Cali was the BEST. Massive change over the last 40 Years! Traveling through for only 6 Hours I was hassled by Beggars on the subway.. The bus I was riding was taken over yes taken Over! Saw needles on the ground homeless everywhere filth and garbage. I cannot believe such decay. Long time Ago a chef delivered an exceptional meal… Now? Crap on paper plate if you can find a place..Really in the dumps.. Horrific SAD! The writer says West coast the best.. Then why is more people moving OUT of Cali than in? Wealth is Leaving. Billions being moved to places like Jackson Hole..

  5. Based in my own experience as someone who lived for 3 years in the west coast and now living for almost 5 years in the east coast, i can give a short, simple and unbiased comment here. Both coasts has their own charm and beauty and I love living in both coasts. It just really depends on each individuals preferences. And besides both coasts are part of the United States of America which makes it the American Dream. So for me, there is no reason for a debate as to which coast is better than the other. Remember, we have all different needs and wants, different interests and likes.

    1. @FS – lots of great ideas and thanks for sharing!

      @Alma Vida – I think this makes sense – it’s somewhat subjective. For example, a friend of mine didn’t like Santa Barbara b/c it was too dry and bothered his skin (even though you could go swimming in the ocean) and instead preferred the humidity of the DC/Baltimore area.

      While this article seems to have been written around 2010, I’d be interested in the an update for 2021 about the West Coast, etc.

      Certainly the natural beautiful of the West/Pacific + Mediterranean climate are amazing. I agree, a lot more people on the West Coast seem to be outdoorsy, at least compared to NYC, Philly, etc. In terms of economics, the WC seems to have sparked a lot of tech innovation. But how much was fueled by East Coast transplants, finance, etc?

      Also, the 4 seasons of the East Coast are amazing, too – and some people miss the fall and winter, especially if the grew up in the Midwest or East. For example, upstate NY or Western MA in the summer. In the fall, the Appalachians are amazing, too. Upstate NY and WV in the winter are beautiful.

      A great option for the East coast (finances, energy & time, willing) would be something like live there for 3 seasons and go to PR or FL, etc for the winter. Then in August maybe go to Canada or Sweden for a few weeks :) Interestingly enough, dual-location living wasn’t that big in 2010, but 10 years later and it’s a lot bigger part of the US culture.

      Personally, my ideal would be central/south CA, but with lower taxes and less regulation. Same for Portland or Seattle, but maybe going somewhere with more sun in the winter, too!

      For East Coast, maybe DMV, then go south in the winter, plus a few weeks in August somewhere cooler! For the Midwest, same as East Coast, but without the need to leave in the summer!

      Anyways all the best to everyone!

      1. The post is updated for 2021 and beyond! It gets updated every year like all of my classic posts.

        I’ve actually seen an UPTICK in online search interest regarding migrating to California for a better life. With such a big dichotomy in vaccination rates between states like California, Washington, and Oregon (high vax rats) vs. Southern states like Alabama, Mississippi, and Arkansas (low vax rates), more people want to move to the West Coast and feel safe.

        Related post: The Delta Variant Investment Thesis

  6. Rob Crumpler

    No thanks, I’ll take the southern east coast anyday. I’m from Wilmington, N.C. and currently live in Portsmouth, VA. My family is from the rural areas of N.C. I’ll take the laid back, life style where no one gets in your business and tries to tell you how to live the life you want to live. The cities you mentioned; DC, Williamsburg, NYC are all very ideaologically liberal cities. I prefer small towns of 5,000 people or less who aren’t all about trying to get more and more money. They actually care about people. I’ve spent some time in San Diego and L.A. Only the rich people have that kind of life that you mentioned. The majority of normal, working, middle to lower middle class people are the exact same as everywhere else. Since you used to work in Finance and have an MBA from Berkeley I can’t image you know what its like to work as a secretary in a hospital or a mechanic at coal power plant, or as an admissions counselor at a university. They don’t have the lush, luxurious life of which you speak of. Southern weather has humidity. San Diego doesn’t. However, I love green. We have more woods, trees and fields than you can possibly imagine. The atlantic ocean is warmer but I never go to the beach, even though I live 25 minutes away. I’m just not a beach person. But give me the southern eastern states any day. I’ve also lived in Japan, the middle East and even the Caribbean. There’s no other place I’d rather live and raise my family then the S.E. United States.

    1. You hit on the nail. All this west coast is better stuff with no solid reasons, just superficial, oh the weather, or the food is healthier and fresher. Get real. You can get healthy food anywhere if you can afford it. And the west coast prices out probably guessing, 80 percent of the people who would even consider living their. These reasons don’t hold air. In the long run they become financially hard to sustain as people retire or if they just graduate from one of the universities there or anywhere. And I love the beach but like to also get in the water. Not happening in CA. And Asia, moving because of that quicker access??? That is totally a weak argument unless you work with that part of the world or love it. Or have family there. The East Coast has quicker access to Europe. I’ll take that over Asia any day. Better food, cleaner, more polite and organized. And like you, I have been to most states, half of Europe, and all over the world, including most of California. There are different kinds of beautiful. Just overpaying for everything on the west coast is enough to turn me off, unless, like you correctly mentioned, I become rich. I would tell anyone, if they can afford it, to go back and forth from the east coast to the west before devoting a life to being there. And regarding racism, what???? I’m black and CA has it despite being so liberal and open. A lot of it. And not the diversity it touts. It is divided mainly by thirds between whites, Asians, and Hispanics. Doesn’t sound diverse to me by my Washington DC and Northern VA standards.

  7. I have lived in Hawaii over a decade, I grew up in Midwest, I have lived in east coast 4 years. So I think your opinion of the island is way off, but again you have to live here.

    Hawaii is a beautiful place, but crowded. Oahu has over 1.4-1.5 million people, and most of the jobs are on Oahu. If people could they’d go to Maui or Kauai. Couple Facts.

    1. Most people here visit the beach only on weekends. I lived in Southern Cal two years, it’s basically the same. The traffic here is horrendous it can take you over a hour to go 5-10 miles. The traffic is regularly rated as the second worst in US right after LA, yes we beat NY with traffic problems.

    2. Island living is a sacrifice, anyone here long term will tell you that. So don’t come here with ideas of overseas properties and foreign investments. If you come to Hawaii, you come to be in Hawaii. Even if you manage to juggle it, you will be judged for not committing to the island.

    3. Air is clean, but you won’t notice it. Our air is often ranked high, but there are several factories and some of that air gets caught up in the forests.

    4. About 20% of our population is retired, about 10-15% is military, 30% in government, homeless around 9%. Short term employment is about 2% So you are at between 71-78%. So even if you are outside those circles, realize 80% of the island is those circles, and interacts among those circles.

    5. We have about 22% less doctors than we need, it’s a reason more people retire to Florida. Health Care is not great here.
    6. School system here always ranks in the bottom of most states, people with children often move or leave the island.

    Now, so I won’t be all doom and gloom.

    1. We have the best beaches, hands down. Been to Brazil, Australia, east Coast, the sand and surf here is the best.
    2. Seafood is great, it’s a local taste, but it is great.
    3. Island living is very laid back, and I love it. If you just want to lounge at the beach all day, most people view that as a reasonable thing to do.

    If your dream is Hawaii, go for it, but having 20 dreams sounds nice but is not very realistic. Focus on one dream, achieve it, move on to the next. If your dream is Hawaii, then come on down. If your dream is being rich, and having investments, and visiting Asia. Then I will see you far later down the road. Either way, Aloha.

    1. Thanks. What do you do in Oahu?

      BTW, the population of Oahu is closer to 953,000. 1.4-1.5M is for all the islands.

      My dad is from Hawaii and we own property there for the past 60+ years.

    2. This is a great response, realistic and tasteful. I think a lot of what the author wrote is pretty ignorant and disrespectful. I grew up on the East coast but live in San Diego now. I can say that there are things I like better about both coasts. One is not far greater than the other.

      1. No no. I live on the north east coast right now and it truly is miserable. Especially the people.. especially when you grew up in the peaceful midwest. And I’ve lived out west too. The north east coast is pretty terrible. These two lists are almost 100% accurate.

        Pro tip: No one move to the north east.

  8. Lake Geneva cost in Switzerland between Montreux/Vevey/Geneva is my preferred coast. Charlie Chaplin knew when he quit the West Coast:-)

    1. Switzerland to me is the most beautiful and sane place in the world. If I could afford it and dual citizenship I would try to be there. What it lacks in a beach makes up for it in every other area hands down.

  9. This is the most childish post I’ve ever read. I hope you’re older than 21 years old because you sound like 16 years old.

    First thing: East Coast is much more than New York City. There are clean cities on the East Coast (e.g., Boston), at least as clean as cities on the West, from my experience. The public transportation is MUCH better here in the East if you’re living in a big city. On the West Coast, not so much. Even SF doesn’t make it close to the East Coast. And I’d *hate* to have summer all around. I thoroughly enjoy New England fall and I actually do like it when the sun sets really early in the winter in the East. I love people being more serious and professional with their attitudes. And people on the West care about the environment and the East doesn’t? Have you ever visited Vermont? Have you ever watched a sun setting over a huge pond and the forest in upstate New York?

    I do like the West Coast because they have their own charm. I did like the West Coast when I visited, but I found the East Coast more personally suiting. (And mind you, I have lived in the States for a long while, but I’m not originally from the United States, so I’m saying this from the third person point of view.) East Coast has history and huge business, legal, and government industries/sectors. West Coast is has huge tech and movie industries, so something more creative and less formal than the East. California has beautiful nature but so does New Engalnd. So why not just appreciate both instead of saying this place is better than that place, blah blah blah. That’s exactly what 16 years old do.

    Seriously, it is almost always people in California who post these types of posts. It’s not even worded as “from my experience.” They’re always screaming how “relaxed” they are by trying to show how they’re different from the East Coast–all the while people on the East Coast don’t even talk about the West Coast because they’re going about their lives. It just makes you think why people like you are so desperate to berate other parts of the country. Maybe from self-insecurity…?

    1. This post is based on experience. I lived in the Washington DC area, Williamsburg, Virginia for college, New York City for a couple years for a total of 10 years. New York City is the best city on the East Coast.

      I’ve been in San Francisco since 2001. And I have explored all along the West Coast. The West Coast is clearly how much better life style.

      How about you? So far you haven’t shared anything about your experiences are yourself. And the only reason why he landed on this post is because you’re curious about West Coast living and leaving the East Coast.

      This post was in response to an original post on East Coast living.

      1. you dont have kids. west coast is pretty much anti-middle class and anti-family. its hard and everyone with kids is forced dual income. cost of living/hosing and moronic zoning with glacial development and bad public transportation and horrific traffic make it suck hard.

    2. Dear “hahaha”, if this author is a 16 year old, then I guess that makes you a 5 year old due to your lack of experience (apparently) and childish response. Which I would expect no different from an northeasterner, because you all are that way.
      Whenever I lay out why the north east sucks everyone gets SUPER offended (even though I provide statistics) and then respond “What if I said why Illinois sucks?” (childhood home). I respond that I would provide them with even more reasons! Because I’m not ignorant to the issues.

      I’ve lived in 5 states within the midwest, west, and currently reside in the northeast. The northeast is undoubtedly the worst. Mostly because the people are so absolutely miserable.

      Additionally, in regards to Mick Russom – everything you said is the exact same problem in the northeast.. My wife and I make approx. 140k or so and have one child and still are struggling to be financially strong.

      But I love that both of your arguments include public transit…. if it wasnt such a clusterf* of people, perhaps it wouldnt be entirely necessary..

    3. Completely in agreement with HAHAHA’s comment. As expats living in the States, we often look at things without any pre-existing bias or personal penchant. West Coast is pretty and a good place to visit, but arts and culture, and style are amiss. People have no sense of formality, decorum or institution; no reverence for what carried them along to this day. United States began on the East Coast, which has a great deal to be admired and desired. A good reason why they started in the Northeast, not even Florida. Not because of the distance, as Europeans sailed all the way to South America. People on the East Coast are not superior, but many who journeyed west is exactly because they got shuffled out, and couldn’t make it there. So have gun, will travel, and west they go. If sunshine is your ultimate life pursuit, then perhaps it is time you re-evaluate yourself and your focus.

      1. Amiss? The museums on the East coast (Met, AMNH) are poorly curated piles of mediocre art and history compared to their west coast counterparts. The Getty is a much better Art museum than any in NYC. I’ll give you that the National gallery is probably the best gallery museum in the US, that’s in DC.

        Broadway shows all start out elsewhere and eventually, with enough corporate sanitation and unification, end up on Broadway. It’s not like there’s really anything original there versus what you might find in the better theaters in Seattle and LA.

        And, when it comes to food… forget it. Portland’s the best city for food in the US these days, original and exciting. NYC food is dreadful, a relic mostly of the 1950’s where it had no competition. There’s better cuisine in Florida, Seattle, and Texas than NYC.

        People migrated because places like NYC (whose population has remained remarkably stable over the decades because so many that arrive leave) are overpriced, undervalued s**tholes. Nowadays with the insane rentals, crowding and pollution it’s akin to living in a large, CCTV controlled prison. Let alone the rickety ‘mass transit’ infrastructure, the only one in the US using pathetic metrocards rather than RFID systems like those used in real major cities around the US and the World.

        Full disclosure: NYC born and raised, spent 45 of my 60+ years in it or nearby in NJ. Lived in Seattle/Portland area for 10 years, now an expat in Europe.

        1. There’s better cuisine in Florida, Seattle, and Texas than NYC.

          Had to hold my hand in my mouth to withstand the laughter to this stupid comment.

  10. I love both the West and the East Coast.

    I was born and raised in San Francisco. Lived in Outer Sunset for 18yrs.

    I’ve been calling New Jersey home for the last 12yrs however.

    My goal is to have rental properties on both sides of this country.

    Being financially free to me means that I get to enjoy the fruits of both coast. Let’s all get there!

  11. OK, you will not agree with me but: WC- too hot, too much sun, too dry, and though we have a few 10 lane roads, you have bigger crazier freeways. To be fair, the “WC” is a long coast and northern CA, WA, etc. is wetter and more lush, but a lot of CA is more like a desert (remember the drought- before the floods?). Some of us are a little reptilian and need to live in dark moist places.

  12. Lenore Payne

    The thing that most adult east coasters will never admit is that, as children, we all dreamed of summer and warmth and sunshine and so, of course, CA. East Coast kids, teens and young adults are obsessed with thoughts of the Golden State. Ir represents adventure and the good life. Families I grew up around would sometimes forbid their kids to consider college here because, the truth is, once you come our west you are unlikely to ever go back. That says it all. I’m an east coast transplant who absolutely loves NYC but would never consider living there again after living in Los Angeles/Pasadena for 18 years. I worked in NYC for an extended time this past summer and, again, loved it but also loved coming home to LA even more. It is jus so incredibly beautiful here – the oceans, the mountains, the palm trees, the light. And, FYI, we definitely have 4 seasons. The changes in light in particular designates the season shifts. So our seasons are just far more subtle and allow to be outdoors for extended periods for the entire year. Heaven. Worth every penny!

    1. Thank you, Lenore. Looking to transplant myself from 38 yrs of E.Coast living out to West Coast. There’s a big wide world. I don’t need the support of family or friends – although it helps – I just need to DO IT, and adjust as I go.

  13. Grew up in Northern California (Palo Alto) and lived in Manhattan Beach, Half Moon Bay up north and SF. Calif is silly crowded, hyper expensive and transitory. Many home areas are homogenized sub divisions. It can be dirty and unkept in some areas. Amazing coastline, weather and food. I live in Northeast. Farr better quality of life. Miss the sunny days but like the diversity of the weather, and a 1 acre lot 5 miles from the beaches.

    1. Bay Area Mediterranean climate master

      You’ve obviously never traveled to California. Northern California. Central California and Southern California all have different terrains. California climates reach from dry to humid. Look it up Sf has some of the most humidity in America. It’s not there thick hot humidity you’re thinking of. The east coast will never have Mediterranean climates, in which the Napa Valley does. A drought doesn’t make a state a desert.

      If you look at a map of the ph levels in USA you’ll see that the northeast has the highest toxicity in the country and therefore it’s the reason why produce is not so good on the east coast.

  14. California is eay more diverse nature wise we have mountains not mini moles, the tallest trees on the world, springs, deserts,forests,beaches,Mediterranean climate and lovely climate year round. As for fun we have more variety with all the celeb catering we getvtk enjoy too luke amuaement parks, shopping, conventions, museums etc. East coast sucks in every aspect and loses. I’ve lived in California, Texas,NYC,upstate ny,new jersey & pennsylvania.

    1. The HigBloke

      That is the biggest load of nonsense I’ve ever read. Apart from all the spelling errors and words that literally don’t make sense, it’s just a sad argument for west coast over east coast.

      I mean who really cares about celebrities – is your life that shallow that “celebrities” is one of the things that puts the west coast over the east coast? The tallest trees…really? The best conventions? Oh, come on! Who really gives a rats about conventions, especially when the top conventions rotate around the country each year and are therefore not unique to the west coast.

      We live in San Diego and the things we enjoy are the reasons we moved out here from the east coast: namely, the ocean, the gorgeous weather and the incredible craft beer scene.

      That said, San Diego is so far south, it’s pretty isolated and isn’t much more than a sleepy beach town. After living here for close to 2-years, we’ve realized that there’s more to life than living in a “surfer dude” culture. There’s way more culture back east; everyone here appears so oblivious to the rest of the known world. And forget any “sense of urgency”…everything is done in slow motion in SoCal. Plus, the drivers are the worst on the planet – they’d never make it out east. Every day we hear about cars flipping over, hit & runs and DUIs.

      So, I think we’re going to see out another year, than plan our return to the real world. Yes, we’ll give up the Pacific Ocean and the weather, but that’s a small price to pay and really, craft beer is all over the U.S.

      It was definitely worth moving out here to live as a resident rather than visit as a tourist, but in the end, this region isn’t all that (and yes, I know I’m judging it from a SoCal perspective).

      One thing I can confirm: the east coast certainly doesn’t “suck” in all aspects!

  15. As far as I know, California is the only state in the Union where road signs are protected from theft by being wrapped in barbed wire. Saw on a Los Angeles freeway with my own eyes.

  16. I’m glad that a lot of people love the East/West coast, they can keep their high property taxes, smog, crime, gangs, etc. There is opportunity for everybody, no matter where you live, you just have to be willing to work harder (and smarter) than everyone else, while my many of my friends in college worked at McDonald’s and partied, I started my own custom harvesting business with loan for a 10 year old combine, and an old tandem axle truck. Today I still do some custom farming on the side, but I mostly run my own farm and small feeding operation. I also have some investments outside of farming, mostly real estate, but some stocks and bonds as well.Maybe it’s just because I’m an ignorant South Dakota farm boy who happens to like open spaces and seeing the stars at night. You may say that South Dakota is too cold in the winter, well maybe it is if you aren’t used to it, or don’t know how to properly dress and prepare for it.

    1. People are arguing all they want, but given this is a personal finance website about building wealth so we can all be free, I’m personally investing in Middle America real estate through RealtyShares, one of the leading real estate crowdsourcing platforms today. The coastal cities are way too expensive with cap rates below 4%. With Trump in office, and the theme of buying American and hiring American, I believe Middle America real estate will outperform over the next 4+ years. They are already much cheaper with 10% cap rates (net rental yields).

      No way am I going to put down $250,000 to buy a median priced property in SF or NYC after an 8 year bull run, and then BORROW another $1,000,000 mortgage! I’d much rather surgically invest in the heartland through RealtyShares $5,000 – $25,000 per property.

      1. Wow this is one step above I make$85/hour at home through Google… Midwest real estate uh-huh… I’m not going to make them money by clicking on their link, howzabout you post some performance numbers for us, like how have you done in the last year doing this and what’s their 1 yr/3yr/5yr return.

        My intuition says, nothing the clown in the Oval Office does will make a hill of beans difference to the folks in the Midwest; when they have no jobs, and lose their affordable healthcare, what’s left their will empty out even more. Remember that the Rust Belt states are ‘net recipients’ on tax revenues vs. Federal assistance, so it’s just an enormous belt of poverty.

        Jobs aren’t coming back because automation’s replacing people in Manufacturing. And if they do come back, why should employers pay more in Kansas than they do in Vietnam? If they come back, they’ll earn less, and not be able to afford real estate.

        Silly recommendation, data free. Might as well save your money, visit some Rust Belt state with it and go gamble in an Indian casino.

  17. bleeding heart

    Upon my first reading of this I could not find the date in which you wrote this article. As I continued to read all I could think was “is this person nuts”. I then have to question if I was honestly going to read your financial advice. I am quite curious as to whether or not you still feel this way?
    I was born in California, most days in elementary school we couldn’t go outside to play due to smog. Earthquakes, drought, etc. Most songs about California were written in the 60’s. I’ve seen more celebrities walking the streets of NYC than I have ever seen in Hollywood, or California. That would lead me to conclude that they work in California and live else where. I have also lived in Oregon and Washington. Oregon is so crazy and crammed packed full of so many people that it takes an hour plus to get anywhere. You hike to a waterfall only to find people living there. The homeless population is a huge issue. The prices of homes and rent have gotten to the point of pure insanity, and I don’t see the jobs, but I hope they are there. Seattle, has always been expensive, but now I think you need to be a foreign investor, or a multi billionaire to live there. If I thought the homeless population is bad in Portland, its heartbreaking in Seattle. I was just there on business a week ago and cried that night it was so bad. They may have beautiful views to look at, but you must look past the homeless population camped along I-5 first. Both areas have vandalism, vandalism,drugs and trash. These are three of the last places I would ever want to live. I have relatives in all three states, don’t know for how much longer because rent and mortgages keep going so high that they too will be pushed out like it or not.

  18. West Coast is the most boring coast. I moved to Southern California last year for work and I cannot wait to go back to NYC in April. I love the weather but everything else sucks. Public transportation does not exist, traffic is a disaster, no one seems to know how to drive, probably because it’s all foreigners and people are so fake to your face but will talk mad shit when you turn your back. No thanks!

    1. The HigBloke

      Here, here! Couldn’t agree more. We’ve been in San Diego for 16-months and have encountered all of the above. In particular, the drivers are the living worst – tailgating is a SoCal obsession, turn signals are virtually non-existent and every day you hear on the news about hit & run drivers, cars that have turned over and a string of DUI related accidents. It’s like you’re driving on the freeway with a bunch of 5-year olds all around you. And then, of course, there’s the daily traffic jams…

      Yes, and Californians are a superficial bunch too. It’s like living in a city that is oblivious to the rest of the planet – we always tell folks back east that San Diego is the “city” (I heard someone refer to SD as “a sleepy beach town”) that time forgot.

      It’s bizarre in SoCal!

    2. Nycissegregated

      Go back to the nyc then. The most segregated school district in America. There is a reason why quality of life and agriculture is garbage. I would never live in a city with stop and frisk and segregation. Nyc is a disgusting place.the food in nyc sucks because literally all the agriculture is old. Agriculture makes food what it is and is the reason why Sam Francisco is now the culinary capital of America. Too many obese people in nyc and I left the city because it is literally the number one worse city for people with disabilities in the world. The subway is trash because trains are always late, statins are closed or falling apart and it’s in billions of dollars of debt. Nyc does even have a ring system on its subways (look it up). Nyc is trash. I know you love that segregation. In all honesty San Diego is a dump. It’s like the equivalent of Long Island but it’s not an island.

  19. East Coast versus West Coast? One is only better than the other if it matches the lifestyle you want to live. I was raised in the mid-Atlantic then lived in Philly, DC, NYC, NC and Seattle. Now I’m in CA. I’ve found the lifestyle here fits me. I like it here because I like warm weather outdoor activities and sure, people can be a little more mellow. That doesn’t mean there aren’t things I don’t like but for me the good outweigh the bad.

    Cost of living, hurricanes and earthquakes aside, people always find a reason to support why one coast is better than another. That’s a good thing because it means you live somewhere that makes you happy.

    1. Well said Frank!

      Or, East coasters who justify living on the East Coast during the winter are just justifying things to make themselves feel better about the frigid weather.

      Mahalo from Oahu! I truly believe I am happier and less stressed living in Hawaii right now. I’ve gone swimming, hiking, or played tennis every day for the past 10 days this December for our business offsite. Isn’t quality of life, health, and happiness the most important thing?

  20. I’ve been living in California for the past 6 months (Colorado before that) and I miss the East Coast aggressiveness sometimes! I’m looking for friends who tell me how they really feel versus acquaintances where I can’t tell if they’re just being nice. I guess that comes with time though!

  21. I happened to notice this article as I was surfing online and wanted to add my opinion. I’m originally from IL and currently reside in the northern plains and haven’t lived on either coast (but I have visited both). I have extended family from the East and where I live there are quite a few expatriates from the western US (mostly from California but people from other western states are here as well); furthermore, many of the jobs I have worked at required me to talk and deal with people from all over the USA so I think I have some experience in dealing with both halves of the union.

    I will be honest; both coasts tend to have a lot of weird people living on them but I found the West Coast to be far more superficial and higher-maintenance overall. I used to dread talking to someone out in California given that many people out there seemed to take quite offense to someone just talking to them on the phone. Hello Mr/MS Californian, YOU CALLED US. Yes, you do have to talk to someone you don’t know so that you can just get information on YOUR account. I’m not even trying to sell you anything or bug you for anything and me saying hello or making small talk to you is NOT going to kill you. If you are that offended by talking to the general public then please, do all your business online and hole yourself up in your house.

    I also think the people out west (like west of the Mississippi River) overall have a more throwaway mentality towards people. I can see where someone moves from out east (or even some place like Ohio) to Phoenix/Denver/LA/Dallas/any city in the west and has a hard time even making acquaintences. When we lived in IL I had friends as a kid (even as a socially awkward kid) and at least had a fair chance at being a part of the community. Most places out west I found that the locals simply wouldn’t give you a fair chance to, I don’t know, be a part of the community. Even here in the prairie states they have that mentality. You can’t get jobs beyond some throwaway retail/restaurant job without basically becoming a cowboy drone out here and then the western US wonders why they have a brain drain problem. Small towns out here scream that they are dying and have no young people coming in but when someone from the outside moves in or at least attempts to answer their call and fix stuff in town the locals gang up, harass, and drive them out. And you wonder why people make jokes about westerners!?

    My theory is that a majority of people moved out west because they either:

    A. Couldn’t handle being in a community where people have at least some normal social skills. This isn’t some morality or religious issue, it’s whether you can at least engage with your community properly. If you have a problem with someone, be upfront but civil with it. Stringing someone along is not going to get you far in the outside world and most cultures won’t tolerate it.

    B. They were on the run from the law or cheated/lied/screwed over people in their former community. Even here in farm country there are a lot of people who moved here to run away from their crap back east. Some of them made up some real tall tales as to why they moved out here when often times they usually were the culprit or weren’t as innocent as they said they were.

    Some other posters on this thread have talked about the discrimination and bad treatment of people out west. I can see why as I found a lot of businesses out here were real shady and I think the idea of the Western US as being some tolerant libertarian utopia is fantasy. I doubt that the western states are anywhere near libertarian as the media depicts them as (opening a business in my state is tougher than it looks) and in fact I found a lot of the politics out here being borderline fascist. It doesn’t matter whether it’s California or Idaho (or any of the others), these states have more than their fair share of laws that make even the old South gasp as far as oppression goes. And good luck on the tolerance aspect; California and the Pacific Coast states might be more tolerant than their neighbors but I found the eastern US overall to be more tolerant as far as LGBT people and other minorities go.

    1. Eastcoastsegregation

      So why does it have the most segregated school district in AMERCA? The west coast is known to be way more tolerant. Nyc has stop and frisk, segregated schools and the worse transportation for people with disabilities in the world. Policies reflect how the citizens are and that’s why nyc is the limousine liberals capital of USA. Even Arizona’s ultra conservative Maricopa county has recreational marijuana. The East coast is filled with conservative Democrats. That’s why the west coast is waaaaay more liberal and SF is the most liberal city in America. No segregation needed.

  22. Interesting and entertaining post. I agree that people in the bay area generally do seem happier than people in NYC and I think it has a lot to do with the weather and people aren’t living on top of each other as much.

  23. I can’t relate to this article, which just goes to show how personal these things can be. I’ve lived in LA for the past 6 years, and NYC for 4 years before that. I’ve missed NYC every single damn day since making the bone head decision to move here. LA is a cesspool and I couldn’t care less about the comparatively nice weather. The Westside housing prices are close-ish to what you pay in NYC, and the vapid Kardashian wannabes have got to be the worst. no sense of family values or tradition here- it’s more common to have divorced parents than not. To each their own.

  24. Grateful Complainer

    Having grown up back east(Long Island), and having lived in the SF Bay Area now for almost 30 years, I can see both sides of the issue. When I first moved out here, it was great, my eyes were wide open to the new experiences, and it was like moving to another country.
    The people: Californians are more laid back, but they are also more stand-offish than your typical tell-it-like-it-is New Yorker. I miss the commonality and the easy laughter I felt with people growing up. There’s just a feeling of belonging that I get when I am there. I’m sure many people have this feeling when they return to their home turf. I’ve just never had that feeling out here.
    The culture: East coast wins, hands down. More of everything. And so much in such a small area to explore. If you are Irish, Italian, PuertoRican, you will find a lot more ways to celebrate that back there. Your ethnicity takes a backseat here. Most of the festivals are for food and wine, expensive art.
    The Climate: Winters are great out here, very mild, but Christmas never feels right and I used to love the occasional blizzard and everyone coming outside in the aftermath to play or dig out!
    Spring time blossoms in late January, early Feb,, my favorite time because it does actually rain then and California is really beautiful when it is green.
    But then the rain stops and the “dying” begins, grass turns to straw, and there is the contrasting summer dry heat/ coastal cold damp fog. The Pacific is really a very cold body of water and she is in charge around here most of the time. She blankets the coastal areas( and quite a bit inland) nearly every night, dropping temps to the 50s even now in July. It even gets this chilly in the Central Valley where the daytime highs can be well over 100°. (I personally miss the balmy summer evenings back east!) Not to mention the wind. The mornings here are very pleasant when the sun is shining. But typically, by 4:00, the wind really kicks up and it will feel 10° cooler than it really is. Suddenly that t shirt and shorts were a bad idea, so you always need a jacket!
    Beaches? East coast wins, no comparison! Yes, they are more crowded, but there’s a reason, they’re warm and inviting! I remember going to the beaches on Long Island after 6pm, when I think the parking was free, and it was still warm enough to swim and the crowds had all left. Not gonna happen here, that’s for sure. Bring yourself two blankets, one to lay on, and one to cover up! Haha
    I know everybody complains about the humidity back east, but I don’t remember it being that bad on Long Island. I know it can be oppressive, but the dryness out here has my nose and lips constantly dry. When I am back there in the warmer weather, I can tell a difference and I like it. The moisture in the air means that it will rain soon and a summer thunderstorm is so nice! The smell and the cooling off it brings, there is nothing like it.
    I also miss the dramatic change of seasons, Spring is SO glorious, because everything is waking up and smelling and looking so beautiful. And Fall is so crisp and dramatic! In general, things out here in CA are muted, and while it has it’s own beauty for sure, the lush green moisture is beautiful too. The grass truly is greener back east :-)
    Cost of Living: I’m used to it, but it’s one of the reasons I’m still here. Can’t afford to leave…crazy!
    Living near a large city: I can tell you this, I never worked in either NYC or San Fran, but NYC is a city I was and still am, always EXCITED to see and explore. The energy is palpable. San Francisco, is just too small, the transit leaves much to be desired, the parking and the hills are no fun as a driver, not as much to do, not as much history, and as you know, too damn cold! My general feeling is, been there, done that!
    In general, that’s my feeling about California. I really need a change of scenery!

  25. Lananda Fleming

    Well, it seems we are all of a gypsy ilk; and perhaps no place is perfect even half the time; either too overpriced, too overtrafficked, too over populated, etc., etc.
    Bottom line is always to me where I feel the most comfortable.
    There are may reasons I loved the L.A. world years ago; and I always had work in the law firm and many entertainment venues as a musician; but the small town appeals to me much more.
    Having been North of Boston for over a decade now, I have to say its somewhere between a towny environ and weather that is more Californian, for sure. The only weather I hated was the pure desert South of L.A. weather, and the Valley L.A. basis really is horribly hot and oppressive in my opinion.

    I am considering Oregon, Northern Cal, probably North of Marin County, OR possibly Laguna Beach if potential roommates come through.

    Otherwise, to pay high prices North or close to Boston is something that I feel is now for the birds.

    On the other hand, its high everywhere, and to bring down the prices, we should bring down the majority hold in the hands of the few elite bankers who have ruined this country and continue to do so.

    Meanwhile, we should all stand up and refuse to pay super high prices on any housing whatsoever; to buy or rent.

    Once we stand up as a whole unit, we will be strong. Until that time, the war lags on.

    Happy house hunting all! And go find your best friends you want to live around until the end of your life; for that is the real quest(ion).

    :) Lananda

  26. I moved to San Diego, California last year, from Austin, TX (where we resided for 8 years). I grew up in Houston, TX and also spent several years living in Denver, CO, and I have spent a significant amount of time in New York, San Francisco, Seattle, and Florida. I don’t know all the East coast major cities as well as I know New York, so, it’s difficult to make an East/West coast comparison, however, I can tell you what San Diego is lacking compared to the south. We have moved 3 times since relocating to San Diego. I thought the “luxury” 2500 and 2600 apartments we rented would be “okay” but I was wrong, the housing here is constructed very cheaply due to the observation you noted in your article (lack of insulation, etc needed because there are few environmental elements) And the high cost and taxes of building here is outrageous I here, compared to all other cities! Go ahead and move to California IF you can afford to buy a home (only 11% of San Diegans can afford home ownership)!, or, if you are willing to risk finding a private rental and cross your fingers that it’s managed by a property man firm and you don’t need to attempt to seek repairs and negotiate with a San Diegan Landlord. I could hear my neighbors sneeze in both high priced apartments I rented (Not exaggerating), we were constantly disturbed by footsteps, bangs, conversations, the sound of their tv’s. I rented apartments all through my 20’s all over Texas and never heard a peep from my neighbors. Buildings are constructed differently here and it even has a term: “California construction.” Concrete is left out from in between walls! I finally found a townhouse in La Jolla, walking distance to the beach, to rent from a property management company. I managed to negotiate a rental rate of $3250 for this 2/2 (down from the $3700 per month they were originally seeking), only because the property backs to a hotel, I can barely fit my car into my tiny garage and maneuver around the hotel guests cars, and my living/dining area looks directly into my neighbors. It’s a tri-level (only 1620 sq ft) this is Huge for California standards. The 2nd bedroom/bath is tiny and it was a rare find to find a place with Air conditioning, even though last summer got up to almost 90 degrees many days and we met families who were staying in hotels, because their house without AC was just too hot to sleep in!

    The restaurants here are consistently Horrible compared to southern standards, low quality (cheap) ingredients are used everywhere. The fitness centers are lacking and have limited childcare hours, compared to TX. There is no quality “drop in” childcare and one can not find a decent sitter who charges less than $15 an hour which is understandable, as the cost of living here is outrageous. Even in this price, the sitter we use acts snotty and as if she is “doing us a favor.” People here are very kind and polite and professional, but, it’s been difficult to make real friends compared to Texas. The radio stations are awful, if they even come in clearly. The grocery store pricing also: outrageous for poor selections. No HEB/Central Market here. The Whole Foods is nice but considerably more expensive than our Whole Foods in Austin. Thank God for Trader Joe’s.

    People we meet are obsessed with money. There is only the wealthy and the struggling here, no middle class. Students have to live 4 to 2-bedroom apartments. There is a large Asian population here, but, you will rarely see any African Americans. There are many wealthy foreigners all over La Jolla. I believe they move here to buy the extremely expensive real estate, driving up the prices, and keeping home ownership impossible for most American families here.

    Lastly, the weather is far from perfect. It is very cold here (60) much of the year, and also overcast on many days. Far too cold to enjoy the beach most days. Summer is the best time of the year in San Diego, – but it only lasts a few months. I have decided that this would be an oppressive environment to raise a child, too stressful financially for a young person, trying to make it in the world. I enjoyed living in beautiful apartments with lots of privacy when I moved out on my own, in Texas. You can find anything you are looking for there in a living situation. There are options and home ownership is within most people’s reach. Very different here. The taxes 30% make it too hard to grow a small business. California is a nice place to visit during the summer. Water and air quality, cost of living, food and dining options, historic architecture, music and nightlife options, and even art and culture are all far superior where I come from in both Houston and Austin and I also strongly prefer a bit of humidity in the air. Much better for the skin and hair. It is bone dry here. I hate it and can’t wait to leave when our lease is up.

    There are only a few places more expensive than San Diego and there are all here in California: San Francisco and LA, San Jose. You can find a great place to live reasonably in Boston, Washington DC, Denver, Florida, ANY NY suburb: ANYWHERE Except for here. This has become an Awful state. You Are California Dreamin.

    1. If I’m dreaming, never wake me up! :)

      Do you feel differently if your income was double? It sounds like financial stress is really trumping your happiness living in SD.

      La Jolla is amazing. La Valencia is my favorite boutique hotel. Wonderful!

      1. That’s irrelevant because the salaries here are not doubled compared to Texas, but, the taxes are significantly higher.

        I could deal with the rent if I was extremely satisfied with every other aspect: weather, food, culture, water and air quality, and so forth, but, when you put it all together to live near beautiful cold beaches, even given the enviable big city attractions, it isn’t worth it to me. I have the funds to live in California if I wanted to, but, I’m also price conscious because I am growing a small business. If the housing that I’ve payed this type of pricing for was high quality, and really wonderful then this would also help us to justify the additional cost of living, you can’t put a price-tag on happiness, after all, but, one has to pay closer to 5,000 a month to get a really great rental and I’m not willing to pay that much for rental property.

        A lot of Californians that move to Texas, hate it, (I’ve heard), so I believe many people come to appreciate the finer things in the places they were raised. My skin feels itchy (very dry) and I would have never expected this living so close to the beach or the colder temps we experienced through the winter and it’s still quite chilly.

        I prefer warm weather and humidity (tropical environments). My parents were living in San Francisco when they met and I’ve always wanted to move here since the first time I visited. I am disappointed, but, still thankful for the knowledge and for this experience. Otherwise, I would have always wondered…

        1. Don’t move to Californa if you can’t afford it.
          Common sense. California is for the wealthy elite, the physically attractive, the technically brilliant and genetically superior. I would not recommend moving to Cali if you are not all of the above.
          We are superior in every way, down to our DNA. It’s embarrassing that I have to associate with other states like Texas when I call myself an American. I honestly cringe during political season, seeing what my fellow Americans from other states look like. Yikes. Just bad genetics, there is no other way to put it. If you don’t think like I think, then your genetics are probably weak and yeah, you will hate California.

          But you are living in fantasy land if you think Texas is even in the same stratosphere as Cali. Texas lol. What a joke of a state. And I’m sorry, humidity is not pleasant. Also makes chicks look disgusting because their makeup melts on their faces the moment they walk outside. Everyone in Texas is stinky and pimply from sweating so much. Honestly, last time I was in Texas, I felt like I was in hell on Earth.

          At least be honest with yourself, I mean common, you can’t compare Texas to California.

          And you were living in La Jolla. La Jolla and all coastal cities other than Santa Barbara ( where I live ) and Santa Monica are notorious for their overcast weather. As a graduate of UCSD, I will attest that La Jolla’s weather did indeed bother me. But I’m a spoiled brat when it comes to weather. Compared to Texas, La Jolla weather is a wet dream. Texas lol. The nerve you have to even make a comparison.

          I’m a single male and I make $250k per year working as a software engineer. I have no problem paying 40% taxes. By the time I’m 28 I’ll be making over $500k. I will have started my own business by 35 and will be a billionaire by 50. If you are smart, California will reward you. Again, California rewards superior genetics. California is for the cream of the crop. There are two ways to succeed in California: be really smart or be really good looking. Being both is ideal. We don’t want you if you don’t fit into at least one of those categories. We honestly don’t. We don’t care what your ethnicity is in this state, so long as you are attractive and smart. We are trying to create a super race here in California. We’re driving up the prices to weed out the weak, the bad genetics. We hope that things will get so bad for the majority of folks that flocked to our soil and crowded our land that they will just leave and go to places like Texas.

          What you say about foreigners invading California real estate is true. It is indeed annoying but only if they’re ugly foreigners.

          I will say that Texas has some cute women. But they are a joke compared to what I see here every day in Santa Barabara and Los Angeles. Banging super models is so easy in this state.

          This state is not for the weak. We are Gattaca, Elysium, the best genetics the world has to offer. You have no business here if you are from a weak bloodline. Simply put, you will not be able to survive and you will end up sounding bitter about life as you do in your rant. We can’t all be Gods now.

          1. Wow. I have no idea why everyone from every other states dread having Californians there. I mean, it’s not like the people aren’t superficial, stuck-up and delusional or anything.


            Thankfully, most people even in California aren’t like this.

    2. The Higbloke

      Well, Colleen’s comment struck a chord. We moved to San Diego from Ohio last September and we were lucky enough to rent a detached private 2B 1Bath house from a couple who were being stationed out east (for at least a year). Although a rental agency is involved, all our dealings have been directly with the owner, which has worked out really well. The house has a massive back yard which is important as we have a Yorkshire Terrier.

      The neighborhood is quiet, peaceful, although quite far out on “THE 8”, which makes the morning commute a challenge, to be sure. The rent is $2300 which is fine, although we are also aware that we could have a huge house with a full basement for that kind of money in Ohio.

      One thing we didn’t realize when we used to visit here is just how isolated San Diego is. It becomes more apparent when you actually live here, but you’ve got Mexico to the south, the ocean to the west and mountains followed by desert to the east. You only way you can go is north. And if you choose to drive north, then prepare yourself for car park-style traffic jams. The furthest we travel are the north county beach towns (which are gorgeous) and as far as possible we’ll take the coastal roads to get to them. I won’t even discuss the San Diego drivers, who by far are the worst drivers I’ve ever encountered, without a lick of road sense. They are aggressive, rude and absolutely clueless on the road.

      There’s no doubt that San Diego (and Orange County) is all about the Have & Have Not’s and certainly the expense of living here has clouded our enjoyment of the California “dream”. That said, we moved here for a different way of life, (mostly) sunny skies, a temperate climate, and – of course – the Pacific Ocean. Seeing the ocean always stirs our spirits and with all the other aspects of SoCal that we love, we will never regret moving here, even if it’s temporary.

      Our lease is up in September and then the question will be “what next?”. Personally, I favor a move back to the Midwest where we’ll trade the sun and ocean for a far less expensive standard of living. I think my wife would prefer to see out one more year on the west coast, so we’ll have to see.

      It’s not surprising when I read that more people are leaving San Diego than are coming in. It was a journey we wanted to make, but lets see how far it takes us.

      1. SD: El Farrilito. Juanita’s. Extraordinary desserts. Balboa Park. TJ’s for shopping. El Indio if you want to overpay. Ponto beach. La Jolla. The wild animal park.

        Ohio: Snow. Ice. John Kasich.

        Seems straightforward to me. Have visited Ohio a lot and had a brother who lived there. Married a gal from SD and spent tons of time there. No contest.

        1. The Higbloke

          It actually IS a contest, where you have to weigh the pros and cons of living in a particular region. We too spent “tons” of time in this region prior to moving here, but you really need to live here, go about your day-to-day living, pay bills, go grocery shopping and generally live the life of a resident before being able to give a clear argument on living in San Diego. There’s no point in giving the tourist point-of-view and naming a few random tourist spots and a restaurant with “extraordinary deserts”. That is a pointless argument in the grand scheme of things. The point Colleen and I are both making (independently) is having lived in San Diego, it’s not all that it’s cracked up to be. My wife and I always wanted to move here, but some things you only discover once you’ve lived in a place. Yes, it has all the things that brought us out here in the first place and we love that, but those very reasons will most likely not be enough to keep us here. Not that we’re thrilled about returning to Ohio either, but all our friends are there, financially we’ll be much better off and the Midwest is a great springboard to visit other parts of the country too. I don’t have a problem with snow and ice (the cooler weather really helps my allergies, unlike the dry climate here) and I have no problem at all with John Kasich…I suspect with the current nominee in place, a lot of folks might regret not supporting Kasich. The bottom line here is that sometimes you have to be bold enough to take a leap of faith before realizing that the grass isn’t always greener.

  27. This article seems pretty centered around California, the PNW has a lot of good things to offer as well, it’s not as overpriced, and not as crowded ;)

  28. Biased much? I love the West Coast being from California, but I can safely say it’s the most overpriced, overpopulated state in all of 50. You have to be pulling down major coin to live anywhere worthwhile. Also, it NEVER rains. Ever. We get most of our water from the CO river and now they’re talking about filtering out wastewater.

    This is going to force (and already is) people to move to places like Oregon and Washington where it’s more affordable, but this is already driving prices up in those states, so pretty soon this whole coast will be way crowded and expensive. Not to mention people pouring in from the East Coast and Midwest already. I rarely meet anyone these days born in CA.

    Both coasts have their perks, but to say one is better than the other is subjective.

    1. According to yesterday’s (Thursday) edition of the San Diego Union Tribune newspaper, there are currently more people leaving the San Diego region than there are moving in. This is mainly due to the cost of housing. It’s estimated that the median wage needs to be $103,000 in order to be able to either buy or rent in a half-ways decent neighborhood.

      A house across the road from us (2 beds, 1 bath, 807 square feet) went on the market for $519,000. It HAD been renovated and it’s in an older, but safe community a few miles east of downtown San Diego, but back in the Midwest (where we moved from six-months ago) you could buy something resembling a mansion with a full basement for that kind of money.

      We moved here because we love San Diego and the weather is for the most part always sunny. We love the sun, the ocean and the stellar craft beer scene. I got myself a good job in the healthcare world (we sold our house in Ohio and moved here without jobs!), so we get by, and of course, the dry heat is great for my wife’s health.

      That said, we’re going to come to the point where we’ll have to consider our options. Is it worth staying on where everything is so expensive (clearly, we’re all paying a “Sunshine Tax”) or should we move back to the Midwest where our standard of living will increase dramatically?

      It’s all swings and roundabouts of course – there’s positives and negatives to everything, but right now – despite the lack of rain – we have to say we love it in San Diego and will never regret moving out here (whatever we choose to do in the future). But clearly, the apparant exodus from here is cause for concern for those in power.

      1. Eastern Washington(Spokane) gives you access to north Idaho with great ski resorts big lakes and hiking.

  29. Carolina and Steven – That’s exciting news! The critical advice I can offer is make sure you have the finances to live in San Diego. People will tell you it’s expensive and it’s VERY expensive. We are currently renting an 850 Sq Ft bungalow with a large back yard for $2,300 a month and that’s regarded as a decent rent. Of course, you can pay less, but you’ll get less. We needed a small house in a residential area mainly for our dog, but also because we came from a residential area in Columbus OH and apartment living is not what we wanted. The house across the road from us has just been renovated. It’s 807 Sq Ft, two bedroom, one bath, large back yard. It’s on the market for $519,000.

    The water bills are expensive (drought related), electricity and gas is very cheap…cheaper than Ohio. We shop at Costco and the prices are pretty comparable to our Costco in Columbus. Car insurance is very expensive – my wife shopped around at several insurance agencies and we’re still paying twice as much as we were before we moved.

    But, in spite of everything I’ve said above, San Diego is absolutely beautiful. Even though it has its rainy and cloudy moments, the weather is nearly always gorgeous. While it was 6-degrees in Columbus yesterday, it was 68 and sunny here. People all over the place in shorts and flip-flops.

    The north county beach communities are so pretty and the people are super-friendly. We took our dog to the ocean on Christmas Day…there was a beautiful sunset too.

    We moved here from Ohio four months ago, purely to enjoy some SoCal living and to get away from the frigid Ohio winters. We’d been San Diego several times prior to moving here and had done (what we thought was) sufficient research on the cost of living here. We didn’t quite get that right, but it’s all about compromise – if you want west coast living, then you pay for it…simple as that.

    Regardless of the sacrifices, we love it here and have absolutely no regrets about selling up and moving west. We have simple interests: walking, the ocean/beaches, sunny skies, craft beer culture, farmers markets, art festivals. All are here in ample amounts and not expensive.

    One day, we’ll most likely head back east, but until then we’re going to embrace San Diego living!

  30. Carolina and Steven

    I am looking forward to a retired life on the West Coast. San Diego is my goal but I will first settle in Glendale AZ just to get acclimated. I an a Native New Yorker and I transplanted to Miami, Florida when I got married and Daytona Beach Fl. 18 years later when I divorced. Me and My new love will call the west coast our home in two years. I just cannot wait. Thanks for the great article.

    1. Come out to San Diego! :) I grew up in the Los Angeles area, but moved down to SD for University and never left. It’s been 2 decades now and I still love it.

      A great thing is that there are pockets of affordability here, yet you can still access the jewels of SD within a 20 minute drive (on average). No doubt you’ve already experienced the weather here – pretty close to perfect year ’round (save this El Nino year…heh). Food also is excellent.

  31. Nothing beats the west coast! On the east coast, it’s impossible to access beaches unless you own them or pay a fortune for parking. On the west coast, the beaches are open for everyone to use.

  32. Aaah yes the good old Battle of the East vs West, can’t we all get along? NO! Why? Well that’s a good question, due in part as you grow up you learn to love the environment were you move/live. Yes, you might say and grew up and moved somewhere else and still hate it. The quick answer is ‘move back’, tricky buuuttt you need a job to go back to and the perfect city. This is were my experience come into play. I grew up in LA (not saying California, since ‘WE’ all know that the state is so big that you can consider San Fran a state for themselves), and I loved it. The overly amounts of vitamin D from the sun that you get while walking down to the beach after parking your car out on the street and the doctor complaining to you why you have so much vitamin D and their vendors not making money out of you for not buying vitamins. The taco stand down the street, the Tamale guy rolling down the street trying to sell his grandma’s fresh made tamales for $1.50 (yes some of these people buy them frozen, also this does not happen in the middle class neighborhoods).

    Many things have been said in this article that I agree, but in the end it is just a preference. One of the facts is the following: There’s never a need to use air conditioning to cool or heat yourself in many places on the West Coast given the moderate temperatures. Opening a window is all you need during the summer to get that draft going Adjusting thermostats is a foreign concept!
    Yes, I agree with this one to a certain degree. What I did was to open the window, and if it got tooo hot then I would leave the house which in turn made you explore more of your city or head to the beach. Now for winter, LA does not know what cold weather is. What LA calls cold (50’s) is nothing in comparison to out in the dessert like Lancaster were the temperature drop to freezing levels of 20 degrees. If you live in that city well sucks for you as in the summer it gets very hot. Since LA is so spoiled with the fact that there’s no bad weather, we complain about everything as far as to say: OMG its raining. Wow Sherlock, the state has been in drought for years and here you are complaining. Another point is that if it rains “people” all of the sudden can’t drive, god forbid they lived in a state where it snows. It is pretty awesome to say: hey guys/family lets take a two hour drive to big bear and enjoy the cold/snow for one day or weekend and then return to the great warm weather of LA. This part I miss a lot, and the cheap car washes.

    If you own a home in LA, chances are that you can grow your own farm or you can grow an avocado tree, lemon tree or even your own orange tree, but some of you already know that there’s orange sellers when you get off the freeway and you can pick these up fairly quickly. Most of the vegetables and fruits are nearly 2-5 days old, and most of it is better than any other state.

    It was 5 years as of now that I moved to Long Island, NY as I got a job opportunity. It was an easy move for myself, as I had traveled to different countries in the past and regularly visited relatives in NYC, Jersey, CT, TX, Toronto etc. I always wanted to be in the “greatest city in the world NYC”, I am lucky enough that I have relatives that actually live in Manhattan 2 block away from all the huff and puff of NYC. The first year was a great experience, drove to the city, bar hop, go up to the roof tops parties, take in the concrete views, walk 1 block and find different cultures, art etc. It was great, then I hear the voice “WINTER IS COMING”, and all went to hell. Then the terrible Sandy came by and compared to LA with the so called Earthquakes, this was far scarier than an earthquake. It was cold and terrible. With grace, I was safe and sound. After this episode, I started to have some “California dream flash backs” or lets call it LA sweats. I started to miss the rolling hills, the fact that you can get in your car and drive out to Morongo and NOT PAY FOR ANY TOLLS. As in LA I used to randomly take off to a casino, and use the spare change as gambling money… I quickly found out that out here in NYC/Long Island, you must pay your toll for any fun activities to do, I fell that you get sucked dry even before you hit the restroom. What I mean here is, if you want to go to Six flags, you must have an EZ pass for tolls (in LA there’s tolls but not like in the east coast, tolls in the LA are for people that are willing to pay for “faster” road which in the end you get stuck in dead traffic jam “if you are a person that knows the 91 you will understand”) and in the end fork out a whopping $25-50 round trip and on top of that there’s food/drinks/parking. I took a weekend to visit an uncle in MD, which is close to DC, I ended up paying close to $60 in just tolls. How the hell do you get around this? simple, buy a plane ticket.

    So which is better the east coast or the west coast? For me the west coast, there’s no tolls, there’s restaurants that are on top of the beach, there’s hills that you go up and take in the city views along with the ocean view. Drive free up the Pacific Coast Highway taking the scenic views to the giant sequoias. Drive 4 hours east to Las Vegas and still have spare change to use for gambling and maybe even some adult entertainment. Drive 3-4 hours to San Diego and maybe 20 mins to TJ, would not stay in the TJ but would drive +30 min more to Rosarito and eat some nice lobsters (careful now, if you don’t know your place you might get sick).

    In the end I like the west coast better, than the east coast. I don’t know how Boston is, but is so close to NYC that it might be the same, if you go further up it just get worse, down south, well there’s plenty of comments above that tell you that there’s so many bugs around. In the end for me I wish I can move back, but must make that big step to say: I’m going going, back back, to Cali Cali.

  33. I so totally agree with this article. I have lived all over, born in Chicago, lived in NC for a long time, California, and Florida. Have visited in about 45 of the 50 states. There is no comparison!

    Granted, everyone has their own personal tastes and preference, but I am a west coast girl all the way. I especially love the Pacific NW myself. I love the whole laid back but edgy culture. People are just generally happier. More content.

    Depending on where you are on the east coast, I find you either have people in your business (southern east coast) or aggressive rude people (northern east coast) or if you visit/live in south FL (which I do unfortunately, at least for now) it’s like living in the armpit of America! The worst driving and traffic I’ve ever seen, the rudest nastiest witchiest people I have ever experienced in my life (I’m not kidding… no where else have I seen employees ARGUING with customers and being overtly rude on a DAILY basis!).

    Anyway, enough east coast bashing. I’m not saying it’s all bad. I loved the area of NC, nice because it was close to everything and a lot of big cities, but far enough out that you had a lot of nature and outdoor activities and it was a mild climate and beautiful seasons.

    Still, I much prefer the big rugged jagged snow capped peaks of the west coast to the foothills of the east coast.

    Laid back culture, live music, edgy, every outdoor adventure you can dream up, in a wonderland of beauty that is nothing short of eye candy every time you look out the door. Nothing like it in the world.

    Rushing, winding rivers full of salmon, alpine lakes with trout, seastacks lining the shore, wild untamed rocky coastlines and towering redwoods and spruce, pine and fir…. unmatched splendor at its finest.

    The difference in the eco-conscious culture is like night and day too.

    Beautiful article!

    1. Aaah yes the good old Battle of the East vs West, can’t we all get along? NO! Why? Well that’s a good question, due in part as you grow up you learn to love the environment were you move/live. Yes, you might say and grew up and moved somewhere else and still hate it. The quick answer is ‘move back’, tricky buuuttt you need a job to go back to and the perfect city. This is were my experience come into play. I grew up in LA (not saying California, since ‘WE’ all know that the state is so big that you can consider San Fran a state for themselves), and I loved it. The overly amounts of vitamin D from the sun that you get while walking down to the beach after parking your car out on the street and the doctor complaining to you why you have so much vitamin D and their vendors not making money out of you for not buying vitamins. The taco stand down the street, the Tamale guy rolling down the street trying to sell his grandma’s fresh made tamales for $1.50 (yes some of these people buy them frozen, also this does not happen in the middle class neighborhoods).

      Many things have been said in this article that I agree, but in the end it is just a preference. One of the facts is the following: There’s never a need to use air conditioning to cool or heat yourself in many places on the West Coast given the moderate temperatures. Opening a window is all you need during the summer to get that draft going Adjusting thermostats is a foreign concept!
      Yes, I agree with this one to a certain degree. What I did was to open the window, and if it got tooo hot then I would leave the house which in turn made you explore more of your city or head to the beach. Now for winter, LA does not know what cold weather is. What LA calls cold (50’s) is nothing in comparison to out in the dessert like Lancaster were the temperature drop to freezing levels of 20 degrees. If you live in that city well sucks for you as in the summer it gets very hot. Since LA is so spoiled with the fact that there’s no bad weather, we complain about everything as far as to say: OMG its raining. Wow Sherlock, the state has been in drought for years and here you are complaining. Another point is that if it rains “people” all of the sudden can’t drive, god forbid they lived in a state where it snows. It is pretty awesome to say: hey guys/family lets take a two hour drive to big bear and enjoy the cold/snow for one day or weekend and then return to the great warm weather of LA. This part I miss a lot, and the cheap car washes.

      If you own a home in LA, chances are that you can grow your own farm or you can grow an avocado tree, lemon tree or even your own orange tree, but some of you already know that there’s orange sellers when you get off the freeway and you can pick these up fairly quickly. Most of the vegetables and fruits are nearly 2-5 days old, and most of it is better than any other state.

      It was 5 years as of now that I moved to Long Island, NY as I got a job opportunity. It was an easy move for myself, as I had traveled to different countries in the past and regularly visited relatives in NYC, Jersey, CT, TX, Toronto etc. I always wanted to be in the “greatest city in the world NYC”, I am lucky enough that I have relatives that actually live in Manhattan 2 block away from all the huff and puff of NYC. The first year was a great experience, drove to the city, bar hop, go up to the roof tops parties, take in the concrete views, walk 1 block and find different cultures, art etc. It was great, then I hear the voice “WINTER IS COMING”, and all went to hell. Then the terrible Sandy came by and compared to LA with the so called Earthquakes, this was far scarier than an earthquake. It was cold and terrible. With grace, I was safe and sound. After this episode, I started to have some “California dream flash backs” or lets call it LA sweats. I started to miss the rolling hills, the fact that you can get in your car and drive out to Morongo and NOT PAY FOR ANY TOLLS. As in LA I used to randomly take off to a casino, and use the spare change as gambling money… I quickly found out that out here in NYC/Long Island, you must pay your toll for any fun activities to do, I fell that you get sucked dry even before you hit the restroom. What I mean here is, if you want to go to Six flags, you must have an EZ pass for tolls (in LA there’s tolls but not like in the east coast, tolls in the LA are for people that are willing to pay for “faster” road which in the end you get stuck in dead traffic jam “if you are a person that knows the 91 you will understand”) and in the end fork out a whopping $25-50 round trip and on top of that there’s food/drinks/parking. I took a weekend to visit an uncle in MD, which is close to DC, I ended up paying close to $60 in just tolls. How the hell do you get around this? simple, buy a plane ticket.

      So which is better the east coast or the west coast? For me the west coast, there’s no tolls, there’s restaurants that are on top of the beach, there’s hills that you go up and take in the city views along with the ocean view. Drive free up the Pacific Coast Highway taking the scenic views to the giant sequoias. Drive 4 hours east to Las Vegas and still have spare change to use for gambling and maybe even some adult entertainment. Drive 3-4 hours to San Diego and maybe 20 mins to TJ, would not stay in the TJ but would drive +30 min more to Rosarito and eat some nice lobsters (careful now, if you don’t know your place you might get sick).

      In the end I like the west coast better, than the east coast. I don’t know how Boston is, but is so close to NYC that it might be the same, if you go further up it just get worse, down south, well there’s plenty of comments above that tell you that there’s so many bugs around. In the end for me I wish I can move back, but must make that big step to say: I’m going going, back back, to Cali Cali.

  34. kely the east coast troll has more than one screw loose it seems. ill enjoy my drought while you enjoy your meds. :)

    1. Yeah seriously. For someone who is so convinced California sucks, they were very persistent in responding to every. single. comment.

  35. Its raining now. Lawn and flowers are beautiful. Eveything is green. Did see 2 sharks this July 4th weekend. Oh well cant be perfect.

  36. I found this thread fascinating. Interesting how the States are being tossed around little kids fighting over toys in a toy box with a “my toy is better than your toy” attitude.

    Let’s face it, each State has its pluses and minuses. I was born in California and lived there until my early 40s. Yes, CA has great weather and you can’t beat the diversity which I think is wonderful for teaching folks to appreciate the differences between cultures and religions. However, I’m not sure the weather and the high cost of renting/owning is worth it in the long run. I moved to the Southeast a while ago and yes, there isn’t as much diversity, and yes, the weather is crazy but I can say that for the first time in YEARS, I have much more of a work/life balance. I can work part-time if I want and still be able to do live in a nice home, enjoy meals out, and travel a bit. I would NOT be able to do that back in California (I’m referring to the SF Bay Area where I was born, raised and lived exclusively). There’s also a huge amount of pressure to live beyond your means there and also to work non-stop. I remember coworkers bragging about the fact that they had worked until 3am on calls with India and then had to be on a U.S. conf call at 7am — and this was a constant occurrence!. People also made themselves available for calls while on vacation. One coworker even worked the day after her wedding and while on her honeymoon. I wish I could say this was a one-off but it was very common in the corporate structure. Pure craziness.

    Do I wish I lived back in CA? Sometimes. Do I miss the lack of work/life balance? No way. If I were to move back, I’d probably move to a smaller town where prices are less expensive and for a job that I could do from home. No weather is worth a 2+ hour commute and the constant pressure to own the nicest car and live in a big house. What is truly going to matter to you at the end of your life? Time to be and explore or the fact that you had lots of cool toys (and some nice weather most of the time)?


    1. You sound like my wife at times. She misses her family and some friends thats why we go out there.( Central Valley) to visit. I prefer SF ( city more than just Bay area where.she also has family) seem like more and more her family members are telling her about the water restrictions there which saddens her due to her late father working on one of the many canals there. More of them are comming here ( mid atlantic ) to visit.

  37. I was born in Massachusetts. Lived in Virginia,Maryland and DC. Moved to Colorado for 10 years and now live in Florida.I have been all over the country, but never lived in the West. I will never move west of the Mississippi again! I cant compare to where I have lived to the West coast but Colorado was west enough for me. The people from the West are far more arrogant and obnoxious and feel entitled to everything. I have been to California,Nevada,Arizona and other western states and yes they are beautiful but I can leave the people. Plus the west is extremely more expensive to live than the East. You are always going to pay more in a City than a town but Colorado was wayyyyyyy more expensive to live than the other states I have resided including DC.

    1. Colorado more expensive than DC? Where in Colorado did you live?

      I’ve lived in the Northeast, in Cali, in Seattle and NJ. Currently not in the US, if I had to move back to the US, the Seattle area would be it, with Cali #2. I’d never live in the Northeast again, insanely expensive, crowded, corrupt, underpaying (unless you have a cushy union job) and polluted.

      For the record, I disagree with Sam about the virtues of living the in Bay Area. It’s also crazy expensive, housing might be more than in NYC, and way too crowded. But overall I find the west coast is much better for quality of life, there’s still some of the natural world left to visit and clear the sinuses as it were.

      1. I agree lol maybe Coldarado ave NW in DC near Rock Creek Park. DC is a yuppie/hipster zombie looking , acting overpriced transplant expensive city as is the area. Highly diverse culturly and tons of new hipster resturants here.But even Denver area is not as expensive as this place.

    2. I have to agree with you there with the people in CO. I am from Texas, they don’t like people from Texas at all. Just a different group of people I am use to. In Texas for the most part people are very friendly. In the small towns people wave at you when you are driving. I love CO for the scenery but the people are different. But I have to say South Florida has the rudest people I have ever encountered!

      1. Haha, just read this after I commented on that same fact. I (very unfortunately) live in south FL and it was a culture shock moving here. I have been all over the country but still stare in disbelief at what I see here locally, and I’ve been here about 3 yrs now.

        I had a woman get out of her car and jump on top of my car once while I was at a light, screaming her lungs out and hitting my hood, yelling at me because SHE THOUGHT I had honked at her, and when I told her I never honked at her, she said, “Oh… oh…” Then turned and ran at the car beside me and did the same thing!! Complete lunatic! And this, I hate to admit, has not been an unusual incident. lol

  38. Beautiful weather? Uh, hasn’t California been in a drought for over 5 years? I wouldn’t consider that good weather.

    1. Puhleeze. Are you a farmer? if not, then the warm, dry, sunny days that encourage nearly-year-round outdoor living are hard to beat. You can tell that the rest of the world agrees -which state’s the most populus, and has some of the highest real estate prices? Probably not the one Jess lives in.

      But, Cali has too many people. Please don’t move there.

      1. I agree with Jess on weather. Yes dry sunny days of 70 + degree weather is good along with nice cooling cloudy days along with some wet rainy days along with cool sunny and cloudly fall days and some cold beautiful sunny days. And finally cold snowy and mildly humid warm days. To have only dry sunny days dulls a persons perspective of the world and lends to limited knowledge of the various weather of this great nation of ours. I feel sorry for you so called ” perfect only” bubble weather living people. Enjoy your drought.

  39. While I imagine NYC does suck big time, the eastern US on a whole is a lot more affordable than the West and NYC and Boston aren’t typical of the eastern half of the country or even just the Northeast in terms of cost of living.

    Wages pay crap on the West Coast unless you are in tech or med. Try paying $2000 for a one bedroom apartment when your job only pays you $11 an hour. It’s utterly impossible, but typical of the West Coast, so most people either live with their parents until they’re 30 here or shack up with roommates, often ruining their relationships with their parents and friends. Even family, I’ve found, have limits and expectations when it comes to support.

    And even though the West Coast has this reputation for being liberal and easy-going, I’ve found most employers and landlords here are very scummy and Westerners being non-confrontational and spineless tolerate and apologize for it, even going so far as judging people for complaining about being treated poorly. There’s a huge class problem here in general – I always hear about how class-conscious the East Coast is, but people on the West Coast deny that poverty even exists here.

    I haven’t met a whole lot of East Coast people so I can’t really judge them, but I can judge West Coast people. I find people on the West Coast are snobby, unmotivated (not necessarily lazy, just hard to get to commit to anything), passive-aggressive, and self-righteous. Not to mention narrow-minded and very snobby about their region’s weather, nature, “laid-back ness”, and the fact you can drive 2 HOURS in one direction and ski, and drive 2 hours in the other and hang out on a frigid beach.

    1. This original artical( West Coasts is that much better)offers validity to what you have stated.

  40. Lived in Cali for the first 33 years of my life then a brief stay in DC followed by florida. I’ve got to say if you have the money then there is no place better than Cali. I loved DC (lots to do, great transportation, lots of politics if you’re into that) and I like the city in Florida I’m in, but….
    The weather sucks, the humidity is crap, there’s bugs EVERYWHERE, there tends to be a lot more white trash than is comfortable. The only reason I’ll deal with FL for any longer is lower taxes and cost of living. The prices in good areas of Cali are out of control. I’d be living in a 6 million dollar house if I moved back to the Bay Area and bought what I have now…and taking home 13% less due to taxes. So while Cali wins hands down in terms of quality of life, it’s like saying a Ferrari is better than a Camry. Of course it is, but is it worth the extra money? Not to me. maybe when I’m retired and my taxable income goes down I’ll move back.
    Oh and my opinion of Cali excludes Los angeles which is a horrible shit stain which should be wiped from the face of the earth.

    1. Calirornia its getting worse and worse and worse. Meanwhile ill head to the beach this weekend and enjoy good Maryland Steamed Crabs passing by a lush rain and sun kissed GREEN lush easy drive to the beach. Passing over.the beautiful Cheasapeake Bay Bridge. Stop and get fresh delicious mellons and strawberries from local farms ,sweet creamy local ice cream and keep California in my prayers.

  41. Pingback: What Is Capitalism? To Understand Let's First Explore Communist China | Financial Samurai

  42. As an east coaster who lives in San Jose (which I don’t like but that’s another story…), I do have call BS a little on the less crooks angle. Um… Have you ever been to east side SJ or Oakland? Lol you’re across the bay from one of the most dangerous cities in America!

  43. Everyone mentions how great the weather is in CA, and they are right. But that’s about all it has going for it. The cost of living is ridiculous. The drought is about to get very real. Going through a wildfire is a terrifying experience. And don’t even get me started on the real housewives of La Jolla/Del Mar/Rancho Santa Fe…

    1. I still find it hard that people are saying how ” great” Californias weather is. People that so called “great” weather that you out west are boasting on is the major cause of your currant problem….the drought! My prayers to you all out there and my wishes for an end to this devastating.drought.

  44. I see the person deleates whats said in defence of the east coast but whats said negitive about the east coast he keeps. Face it california I have been out to LA, Central Cali, and the Bay area…..its not paradise. Its fun but I found LA in particular to be filthy ….brown smog lol. And lack of water. Enjoy your drought California.

  45. I’m 33, have a partner who is 34, and we have 3 boston terriers. I grew up in rural KY, moved to Ann Arbor, MI 13 years ago to get a taste of a more urban living and culture. My partner spent 8 years of his childhood in FL and the rest of his life has been in or around Ann Arbor. We’re a one car family, I commute to work by bicycle or public transit (bus) and don’t miss the extra vehicle. I love the hipster, arts, music, foodie/culinary experience of Ann Arbor. The spring/summer/fall are generally beautiful with lots of outdoor activities to find. Unfortunately winter starts settling in around Halloween and doesn’t break until at least mid-April. That makes for a long, dark, cold, depressing 5 or 6 months of the year. The past two years harsh winters have brought upon me the itch to be somewhere with more warmth and hopefully more sun.

    Our only experience on the West coast was Seattle (which we loved) but it is fairly rainy/cloudy for a significant portion of the year, so we’re not sure it’d be much better option except they don’t get the deep freeze and snow we get here. Next we are looking to California. We know no one there and have never been. We’ve read up a lot on San Francisco/Palo Alto/San Jose and the job opportunities match up to our needs but we’re not sure about the weather, rent, and livability with 3 dogs (we currently own a home with a nice size back yard they can run and play in). By comparison we also looked at San Diego which sounds perfect as far as sun and weather that we’re looking for, rent is somewhat more affordable, but being a one car family it sounds like it may be difficult to walk/bike/public transit around the city and to work. Also the food culture depending on what we read sounds like it is potentially limited in San Diego, again, we don’t know. San Diego does however sound like it could potentially be a much more “multi-pet” friendly environment.

    Do you have any insights on either of these cities/areas that might help us make a decision on where to relocate to (while taking in our history and “likes” about where we currently live)? Thank you in advance!

    1. Ethan, a house in high crime ghetto Logan Heights San Diego rents for $2000/month and sells for $500,000. The only affordable housing near San Diego is in Tijuana Mexico or 50 miles north or East. It is just as expensive as san fran bay area and LA.

  46. Planning on relocating to Beverly Hills California.. Currently living in West Palm Beach, Florida.. Lived in NYC, for nearly 3 years.. Born in the Bahamas… With that said, presently the only two places in North America that interest me to live is California and Hawaii… Love how my spirit felt when I visited these two places several times! There’s happiness in the air and you can feel it. The people are pleasant. The environment is clean and beautiful. The climate is wonderful. The beauty of living in the USA, is you have options to explore and live in different states simply by driving, flying, train, boat, etc.. The opportunities are limitless and available 365 days to everyone and you can freely decide on which state(s) suit your personality and lifestyle best.

    1. I share the exact same feelings. Wish I could afford to go home. Hate that I can’t. Hope you enjoy. I feel the same when I am there to visit. It’s hard to get on a plane to leave

  47. Future hours

    I have been living in Maryland most of my life and I am absolutely miserable. Besides some of the stupid strict laws and other political b.s here, my biggest gripe are the PEOPLE!! I can’t wait to move out west and get away from these sick, backstabbing, one dimensional, cliquesh braindead, bitter, ugly, narcissistic, conformist, losers. I don’t understand how people can like this hellhole. California here I come !!!

    1. Good riddeance. Take plenty of water , ahell of a lot of extra money ,paticence and a air filter with you…oh yeah and a drought tolerant plant with you.

      1. Oh, I love that posting from Future Hours on Feb 16th regarding living in Maryland. I was trying to work out what kind of loser Keli is before Future Hours summed it up nicely.

        I was in Maryland three weeks ago and all it did was bloody rain all week – I couldn’t wait to escape…not that Ohio was any better. Intense humidity and rain for weeks in the Ohio Valley.

        Interesting about Keli’s comment regarding us being English “transplants”, because having lived in various parts of the globe helps us see things in a much more objective manner, rather than say we shouldn’t move to San Diego because of the “drought”. We did our homework and weighed everything up before deciding to move to SD.

        Regarding Keli’s “moron” comment about me, all I can say is only a complete and utter moron and total twat would fill each post with so many spelling mistakes that even a three-year old would be embarrassed. Our cat can spell better.

        When we fly into SD and see the beautiful Pacific Ocean and blue skies with a light breeze in the air, our spirits soar.

        Rather that, than being some old miserable tosser out in Maryland running down everything in Cali. And yes, we will be enjoying the drought.

        1. Hey” Gaspar smelling Brit”keep your “tosser” Queen and Country statments over to your non rain drying up fighting over water. Hydrant water stealing drought shaming bubble fire prone side of the country you chose to live in. Im very very happily retired from serving my community and country. Maybe if your” moronic ” selfs have a cat that can spell better than me you ought to capitalize on that….on 2nd thought you seem to be too much of a ” moron” to do so. Well as you say on your side the pond ,cheers mate. Enjoy your drought prolonged fire season.

          1. Yep Kelly just as said people living in places that are depressing and miserable share that personality. You are the perfect example.

  48. Love this article!

    I’m actually a born and raised North Carolina resident and I’m making the BIG move to California in August, 2015 so any and all tips would be great.

    I’m moving to the Bay Area around Vallejo. I love California and very excited about living there full-time. This has been a dream of mine for a long time and I’m happy to see it through.


    1. Very cool Jason! Welcome to California! Vallejo is kind of a sleepy town, but at least it’s inexpensive, and you can drive to cool places like SF, Muir Woods, and Lake Tahoe. What are you coming out here for?

    2. Mick Russom

      You will be miserable in CA. Because you can “live” the life of a wage slave, relax at work a bit, not as high strung, and get by ok. But you will _NEVER_ own a house, you will always be behind in your financial goals and you will be surrounded by the entire WORLD’s best of the best. Which means you need to be a superstar to carve out a basic existence.

      CA and the west coast is a total look but you can have area – you are waiting in a line to get a piece of the pie and you will die in the line before you get yours. So unless you won the lottery, NEVER try to raise a family here. Its _INSANE_.

      You wake up one day and realize you dont even own a house, rents are $3000 and what about college tuition? Forget it.

      CA and the west coast HATES families. Its getting harder by the day.

  49. East Coast has NYC… and there is really no match for that, so if you want that (and I have lived there) you just can’t duplicate it on the west coast (or anywhere else in North America). Everything else, from cities (SF stacks up well with any other East Coast city) to weather, to outdoors, to the ocean, is all better on the West Coast. I think the downsides of NYC are still worth it, it is one of the top few cities on earth, west coast just doesn’t have that. Outside of NYC, give me SF or LA. Boston and Philly are also great (no city can touch the history in those places), but to me the weather, lack of nature just isn’t worth it, and I think SF and LA are both more premiere international cities at this point than those two. I’m not a fan of DC at all, do not see what people see in that place…really sterile and boring. I love NYC so much I’ve even rationalized Philly for being close to it, but really you live your day in / day out life in the city you are in, not where you visit 4-5 times a year.

    1. Oh, Jokomoal, puhleeze. NYC is an epic hole, more similar to holes like Delhi and Mumbai than nice places like LA or SF. NY’s museums – there are too many, and they are poorly curated. The Met and the AMNH can’t hold a candle to the BM, the Getty has the art thing hands down over the art-parts of the Met. The Whitney’s a joke of an art museum.

      The cost (as Sam gently points out) of living IN NYC – not NJ, but the 5 boros, is insane! And you pay state income tax (unlike in, say, Seattle), and sales tax (unlike in, say, Portland). The weather is ABYSMAL compared to the cities on the west coast. It’s not just bad – it limits what you can do for 4 months (at least) a year. The rotting infrastructure is a JOKE except they seriously think it’s ‘not too bad here?!’ Are you kidding me? Every town has RFID cards for mass transit, even podunk Seattle buses have it. NYC? Not a chance. Crappy wear-out-in-a-month-or-two Metrocards. And the subways are ALWAYS delayed and ALWAYS under construction and some such. You know why? Because the infrastructure’s falling apart because of its age, corruption in the public sector, and HUGE AMOUNTS OF PEOPLE IN TOO LITTLE SPACE.

      Sam’s right about it being impossible to live comfortably in NYC, unless you are pulling in MILLIONS OF DOLLARS A YEAR. Everyone else is compromising badly on quality of life, and are in huge denial.

      What NYC has, is a huge captive audience, and good publicists and dummies repeating what other people tell them about how great this town is. Piffle. There’s nothing here, and what is here, is overpriced, low quality and generally horrible. Having lived in one of the so-called better parts of NYC, the Upper West Side, and Seattle, and the Bay Area, and prolonged stays in Philadelphia and various parts of Florida, there’s no contest: EVERYWHERE, LIFE IS BETTER THAN IN NYC.

      Don’t move here. Don’t be a fool, let this 3d world dump rot away.

    2. NYC is the worst place to live in the country by a wide margin unless you are earning over $500K per year. It makes sense for the top 1%, but the other 99% of working class assholes would be much better off living anywhere else in the country.

      DC has turned into a mini-NYC at this point as well. The minimum family income required to endure the horrible quality of life here is $375K per year.

      Everywhere else on the East Coast you have to be making $150K to afford the best neighborhoods and schooling for children and justify enduring the horrible weather, lack of quality outdoor amenities, and nasty people. The demographic trends are reflecting this reality. The middle class has been hollowed out on the East Coast because everyone earning between $50K-$150K has figured out that they can get a job that pays the same amount of money or slightly less out West or down South and money goes much further.

      The East Coast at this point is elusively rich enclaves surrounded by poor ghettos. Rich people being served by people that aren’t rich or smart enough to move to nicer places.

      1. Ok explain the horriable overpriced smog ridden ugly city thats plastered all over the media called la?

        1. So. Kelly. Where do you live. Sounds like you only have hear-say to go on. If you have never been there then we’ll……. ca smog problem is nothing like is was. Crime is in spots as in any large city. Chicago have had more violent crime than 10 yrs of ca. I lived there for 35 yrs. never have I turned on the news to hear about daily shootings since I moved to the mid Atlantic

  50. I have wanted to live on the West Coast my entire life but grew up in WI and have lived in MN since I was 17 (when I ran away from WI). I’ve always been afraid, or listened to all the naysayers and horror stories about going broke, not finding anywhere to live, how awful traffic is. I’ve never had a desire to go east (nothing against it, I just don’t have the personality for it). I am not a youngster but I’m far from retirement. I do ok, income wise. The past 2 winters here in MN have finally “broken” me. I’ve never experienced anything as horrible as last winter. I don’t want to spend the rest of my days struggling through minimally 4 months of brutal cold. Not freezing temperatures (please, I would love 32 degrees right now), but double digits below zero not including the wind chill (then we are talking surface of Mars cold. It’s -8 outside but with the wind it’s -29 right now). I have never loved winter but have always tolerated it (or drank my way through it). I am done. We have friends in LA, I know people hate LA, I actually like it but probably can’t afford rent in Studio City or North Hollywood. I am thinking of looking at Woodland Hills, Sherman Oaks, etc. At any rate, my goal is to get out of here by October 1st. I really love Austin TX but the husband doesn’t want to go there. I haven’t told any friends here yet because I know they will tell me I’m nuts, that I’ll go broke, that I’m too old, that I’ll fail, and it will be hard for me to hear all of that. But if I can get rid of my SAD lamp and actually take my dogs outside without worrying that they will freeze to death, then I think I’ll be ok. Thanks for this post!

  51. I agree with much of what you write. But utility bills are HIGHLY dependent on where exactly you live. California tends to have the highest power costs in the country. It also varies within the state by the local power company. Much of Cali gets very hot (deserts) or very cold (mountains and deserts), necessitating lots of electricity use and high bills. The only places you never need AC are within at most 3 miles of the coast, and it the far north of the state near the Oregon border. Even that is pushing it. Most people don’t live in those zones. Oregon and Washington are cold are wet in the West (ocean side of the Cascade mountains). They are dry and hot in the East. Its a myth that all of Cali is one climate. Its a myth the whole Pacific Northwest is one climate. Much of the West- Idaho, Montana, CO, UT, WY etc are very cold in winter. Much of the West, AZ, NV, NM, UT, Texas etc is very hot in the summer. You’re writing from the perception of San Francisco. Thats a tiny area.

      1. Silicon valley might have been an innovation hub – but it’s mostly in software. They’ve not cured cancer, found a way to feed the overpopulated world, heck, come up with a decent computer model to help mitigate Cali’s awful drought.

        Sam – don’t get confused with “A few white guys making enormous, inconceivably large amounts of money” with “This is a great place.” It is for a very very few. The rest of us, well, we get by on wages that don’t really grow, have to compete more and more and more for jobs because of the out-of-control breeding and hideous H1B program manipulations, and generally see a gradual decline in QOL as time goes on.

        I mean, Sam, you’re blithely talking about ‘only a 2 hour commute.’ Are you NUTS? My father never had that commute. My father in law didn’t. Each of them raised families with 3 kids in suburbia and put all 3 kids through college.

        So, tell me, how do the numbers work now?

        Let me tell you another anecdote. My wife, from SD, has a good friend, older retired lady, who was one of 6 children in the SD area. Grew up in a 3 bedroom house, her mom never worked, and dad was an alcoholic construction worker. Some kids went on to college, some to stay-at-home-momming, and so forth.

        That house sold a few years back (2d or 3rd owners since my wife’s friend and her family were the original owners.) Something like $800,000 to a family with no kids, 2 full time jobs and hopes for a kid someday.

        See what I mean? It’s out of control expensive everywhere, it’s entirely due to overpopulation, and we’re all the fabled ‘frog in the pot.’ Throw the frog into boiling water, it jumps out. Raise the temp slowly, and it’s frog stew!

        We’re frogs in the pot. 2 hour commute – REALLY? Insane.

        I am living in that epic sh*thole NYC. Last week, I had to take the bus to NJ to see some folks. What do I overhear (since you can’t have anything like a private conversation anywhere outside in NYC, too damn crowded too many people yinno). I heard some guy talking to his wife, the bus was running a bit late and he would NOT BE HOME for another 2.5 hours. 2.5 fricking hours, most of which are spent on A BUS.

        And he was cajoling his wife to move to NYC, since his 4 hour a day daily commute was killing him. Youngish looking guy (I figure 30’s, wife in the ‘burbs probably some kids…)

        Everyone we know that commutes from NJ spends 4 *hours* on mass transit. IN-FREAKING-SANE. There’s too many people. Don’t make it worse for them by passing this off as the new norm.

        And I ask all the parents I know, yourself included, Sam, “What kind of commute will your children have?”

        1. Funny….. I lived in the Bay Area back in the early eighties. Not much has changed. Long commutes 50, 70 miles one way was the norm back then.

          And the pay really wasn’t much better than the rest of the country. Heck…. Once you include the additional taxes, cost of commuting, and the physical stress on your health; you’d be dollars ahead, living somewhere in the middle of the country!

          Oh well….. Too each his own!

    1. Dude – you’re absolutely right! Oregon and WA are cold and wet – please don’t EVER consider moving there. Tell all your friends, too. Uhuh. Please! And their friends – stay away!

      Place is getting too crowded as it is. Might as well humor the dummies like Dude.

  52. Sam Volkall

    lol. we have a saying in NYC (brooklyn here) the people who bash the east, on anything silly, really just can’t make it out here. It’s fine have your weather, your celebrities, surfer dudes(brahhhhh) or your business minded people. We are the big bucks out here. We mean business. ive lived in California for 5 years, and NYC 3 years. NYC. pardon my french, destroys california. Embarrasses it. We have the most wonderful place in the world. Everyone on this globe knows about NYC, who knows about SF? Europeans, asians, and Aussies. We have culture, class, no class, trash, beauty, all in one. You want a break from the city life? We have non stop bus access to upstate. To the people that cant take the “weather” lol. It’s fine. it takes a real strong minded, focused man, to not make any excuses, and do what you want. We are the place for oppurtunity. If you let “weather” bother you, you’re making an excuse, and just aren’t nyc tough. It’s fine. We don’t mind, less people, but dont bash us like that.

    P:s i am going back to sf in Jan, can’t wait, loved it there.

    1. is it true, Sam Volkall, that if you give them cookies Trolls go away? Consider yourself supplied with a box of those lousy Entenmann’s you New Jerkers love so much.

      Living in the Upper West Side. Can’t wait to get back to the PNW. No corruption, reasonable prices, no income tax (Seattle), or sales tax (Portland.)

      We have a saying in New Jerk City: FOAD. It’s a dump hip-deep in trash and rife with corruption. Try living in it.

      1. Obviously You couldn’t Make It Here. We are dirty and beautiful, loud and serene plenty plenty of culture and diversity. Concrete Jungle, city lights, stunning views, dirty water Dogs and Cabs. Baby Doll it’s not For every1. You have to be Bout this Life a Go getta a survivor. We Don’t knock you Honey you either Got stamina to Live here or you don’t. Don’t Hate Mama!!!

    2. Eastcoastveggiessuck

      Quality of life makes it horrible. You’re food wouldn’t be nothing without California. If you want a short life and live around very un healthy people. If you like history of stolen land and genocide, and shady bankers that destroy the world then nyc is the best.

  53. I realize that you think that the west coast is a great place, but you don’t need to get cocky about it. I also understand that Hawaii is amazing, but it’s evident that you don’t have much knowledge of the place; first of all, it takes about 5-6 hours from LA to any Hawaiian Island, second, Hawaii is made up of not one but 4 main islands along with many other smaller islands, and 3rd, Hawaii and the other islands that you meantioned are not in Asia, but they’re in the Pacific Ocean. Come on. I’m 15 years old and I even kniw that. Get your facts together before you write ANYTHING!!!

  54. East coast ppl complain to much about LA the traffic the schools the way of living mannn… back in the 90s traffic was cool but when east coast ppl started coming to LA like roaches, traffic got worst. If u dont like LA leave or y come here on the first place LA ppl dont want east coast ppl hogging LA. LA AND CALI is they place to be period.

      1. Out of curiosity Kely, are you a farmer? You’ve mentioned drought a lot of times, but it’s not like there’s no drinking water, showering water, bathroom water, pools, fountains, and all that. Is that what you think Californian’s are going through? If so, the media has an amazing way of manipulating the masses.

        Have you ever traveled internationally? If not, I highly encourage you to do so. It’ll help broaden your perspectives. Learning another language also helps too.

        1. No I am not a farmer even though some of the most beautiful farmland I have seen ( in the 37 states I have traveled to in which I have live more thsn 30 days in 7 of them) is in the eastern VA, PA , MO, OH and WA. In your state I have been to Bakersfield , Sacramento, Orange Co. LA ,PCH , Bay Area (love SF) Napa , Chino and Barstow. Your state is beautiful but not the arrogance typical close minded paradise you embellished it to be .At the same time bashing other states. As far as overseas travel im only limited to 6 countries in europe and our 2 Border countries to the north ( from Quebec prov to Vancover BC to as far north as the Northwest Terr.) Mexico mostly border towns to release licked up US.service.members. France Belgium, Germany , Swiss and Italy are beautiful with gracious people as . Saudi Arabia is surprisingly cold at certian times of the yr. Love the carribean.but they.are also going thru a.painful drought now. You should have been with me for 3 days in Oct 2001 at ground zero in lower Manhatten digging what was left of WTC as well as at the Pentagon on the 11 and 12th a month earlier. Maybe that would have humbled.some of your writing. Enjoy your drought.

          1. What do you think is the root cause for your frustration and anger? It feels like there’s something going on with your job, family, or finances or something. Where are you from originally.

            1. No anger here. Im not the one living in a disaster area and in denial of it. You are the one living in the so called paradise bubble and are just just plain stupid to realise it. Its a beautiful rainy day here today and tomarrow I will go with my family fishing in upper 70 degree weather and basking in a place unlike yours that has articals on how dry it is , wildfires , and how much disaster relief funds your drought ridden state is seeking. Enjoy your drought.

          2. Kely, Kely – you & a few others here need to chill out! The article Sam wrote IS HIS OPINION. I’m sure he was expecting to “get a rise” out of some people :-) There are many wonderful places to live in this great country & good arguments to be made for each area. I’m 54, born in the Santa Clara valley & lived here my whole life. It’s home. Just returned from “shredding powder” up @ Lake Tahoe, looking forward to some great dirt biking in the Sierras this summer, hikes in the redwoods every week w/ my dog, & maybe enjoy the sunset over the Pacific @ Naphente in Big Sur w/ a cocktail and nice dinner. But that may not be for everyone. Things I don’t like about CA are traffic, high electricity bills & gasoline costs, and stressed out people everywhere. When I see a problem I try to do something about it – so I ride a motorcycle to work (split lanes), put solar panels on my roof, ride my bicycle whenever I can, & get away to solitude in nature on my free time, which we have an abundance of. Complaining & calling people names doesn’t help anything, & ultimately, you will be the one that is stressed out & unhappy. Find what you like, try to improve it, help others along the way. Peace!

            1. Oh man, I just came back from 10 day in Lake Tahoe myself for the 30 feet of 2017 mega dump so far!

              Can you imagine having snow on the East Coast and NOT being able to carve it up down a mountain? It’s like living on top of a hill with no view! What’s the point?

              The thing about my opinion though is that it’s right. I’ve got 10+ years on each coast. How can one argue? :)

              See: A Vacation Property Buying Rule To Follow (Some pics of the January 2017 storm!)

          3. Eastcoastveggiessuck

            Enjoy the highest acid levels in America and the worst quality of food. Enjoy our fruits and vegetables from California. YEAR ROUND.

        2. I had responded to your questions that you so arrogantly placed on me .Who knows its floating somewhere out there. Ok again a shortened version is farmer? No. But rates beautiful farm lands I have seen in Va, Pa, Oh, Wi, Wa Or. And eastern Canada. US states traveled to ( actually traveled to not the airports ) 37. Lived in over 30 days….9.Countries been to 7 europe, 3 carribean. 3 Asian. Manipulated by the media…helll no I look at all news media including South African news along wit korean , french , malasyian to cnn to msnbc to even a sneak or 2 to fox and al jazeria. Places traveled to in your state? Bakersfield , Barstow, Merced, LA , Sacramento, Bay Area ( yes love SF on 4th of July) Chino and Napa….San Bernadino??? Enough said of that place oh.and San Lewis Opisco ( hope I spelled it right). I did mentioned to you that my experience in Manhatten NYC in Oct 2001 for 2 daysat a place in lower Manhatten digging thru what use to be WTC after a certian FDNY captains funeral and me being at another place on 11th day a month earlier at the Pentagon has givin me a newer more insite at life. Maybe if you had reflected your whole writings in this artical of yours ,though seemlywimsical in nature would cause you to appericate the othe 49 states more.

          1. Kely must be a very miserable person because every post is extremely negative. If you find California so appalling, then just be thankful that you live in Maryland and let those who have positive thoughts about Cali enjoy it. I’m actually quite fond of Maryland as it’s one of the states I cover in my job in Biotech sales (I much prefer it to PA which I find to be really depressing), but for us, living in the Ohio Valley has run its course. Boiling hot, humid summers and frigid winters with more snow than you can shake a stick at, has taken its toll on us. We took four trips to San Diego and realized this was where we needed to be. Having just endured four weeks of grey skies and a bucket load of rain in Ohio – leading to our back garden being flooded and three rose bushes destroyed – we put our house on the market and we’re now in contract. We’ve been waiting for the right moment and our window of opportunity is now here. We’re also tired of the arrogant people in this region too. There’s no need to go into all the aspects of SoCal that appeals to us, but we’ve done plenty of homework and we’re ready and excited and can’t wait to leave the dreary mid-west. And by the way, we’re from London and have lived in various parts of the world – That said, my wife pointed out that we REALLY belong in San Diego. Each to his own, wouldn’t you agree?

            1. All I have to say to you my non friend is I have to say negitive reply to a atrical so negitive as ” The West Coast ..its really that much better” especially when the artical is based on demeaning other places not like ” California”. As farnas being a miserable person only a narrow minded moron would lable a person who does not agree with them as living a terriable life. No non friend My life and where I and my wife ( native califorinan from central valley, not a transplant like you) thanks the stars above she has moved out of that state and the arid region you love. If some people like seeing flames comming their way on a parched land ..hey enjoy.Enjoy your drought.

  55. Here is why I am leaving ca. The liberals have destroyed everything wonderful. You can’t live on the beach as the properties are gone and there are many private beaches. No one can afford to live near the beach because they are leaving it to their own kids. Apartments are outrageous due to too many illegal and legal immigrants. The people here can’t talk about anything more than the Kardashian family. The schools are horrible. The cost of business is outrageous and more and more companies can’t survive. There are no jobs. Traffic is horrible and getting worse. It is hard to go to all those great spots. Taxes are huge compared to most states. Yes, the weather is the best. No one can ruin it…yet.

      1. Do you know what racism is? People just seem to throw that word around without knowing what it means –like you!!

  56. Just moved from Seattle area to NYC. Can’t wait to move back to Washington. Why?

    1. Corruption. NYC is absurd. Place is filthy, hot and crowded. Well, hot except during the brutal winter where they couldn’t remove the snow. Civil “servants” here set the tone for the town – surly, lazy and too damn many of them with too little to do. Try the DMV – primitive software sites, gotta do everything in person, get an appointment, wait, wait, spell things 3 times, have them get it wrong, … Read the papers any day, latest fun is the head of the pathetic library system in Queens, has been ‘moonlighting’ for another $110k job atop his $379k job, which included perks like the library system remodeling his office and adding a smoking deck. This while several libraries in Queens remain shuttered due to hurricane Sandy damage (from 2 years ago…)
    2. You get nothing for something. Tiny apartment in Manhattan, smaller than the deck I left behind in my suburban house, costs as much as my old mortgage and then some. For which I get, well… no A/C. Con Ed utility rates. If I had a car, ridiculous car insurance. City and State income tax (Washington state has neither) amounting to about 10% of income. Did I mention my salary’s about the same here as it was in WA state? So its not like they’re paying you well to live here. We’ve got to be super-frugal to avoid cutting into savings too much.
    3. Entertainment and culture. To go to the top of the Empire State building now costs over $50. Museums are $25/person. You can’t live in this town and enjoy it, unless you run a hedge fund. Yes, I’ll admit there are more cultural opportunities here than Seattle, Seattle’s a bit of a backwater, which is why we regularly vacationed in San Francisco and Portland, OR (Portland has better food than NYC on average.) Better, I think to make day trips here to see one or two things than live here.
    4. Filth and the mentally ill everywhere. On a good day, I’m not panhandled. Every time we take a trip on the subway, esp. on the weekends, we see rats running around the tracks. Every. Time. That is, like, daily. The media are all over the rats in the restaurants, just recently some wannabe inventor of some overrated pastry called the Cronut had someone capture images of rats wandering his shelves, too. Paris is cleaner. I wonder if Mumbai’s cleaner than NYC. Hong Kong is. I won’t even go into the cockroaches, it’s still cold enough they’re not everywhere. Just a matter of time I’m sure. Heck, walking around *Central Park in the dead of winter* we regularly saw rats running across the path. Central park! It’s supposed to be the nice part of town!

    5. Decay. Subways regularly have problems. It’s an adventure on the weekends as there’s constant maintenance – escalators, lights, you name it, let alone tracks. So, you’re guaranteed some surprise which may delay you. 100% of the time. This is decay. Why? See above about corruption. This place is so in the clutches of union thugs that it’s doomed to stay this way. For contrast, in the last couple of years, the state of NY gave $2bn tax credit to build a high-tech industrial park around Albany/Rochester area, simply because those areas had long since lost their businesses (Kodak, light mfg.) NYC, not so much, just lose jobs. NJ used to be a bastion of high tech, too, I worked various jobs there for over 20 years. Now? All gone with the dot-com crash and no commitment from the state to support high-tech. It’s not really landing in NYC, either. It’s moving west, where the weather’s better, life is safer and less expensive.

    Another example of corruption and decay: In suburban Seattle area, we had a public library paid for with our property taxes (much lower than they would be here.) We could check out books and dvd’s using a machine, and use the same machine to check them in. No muss, no fuss. Library was a very nice building, good places to sit and read, lots of magazines on the rack. Reasonable hours, open late Thursdays, open 7 days a week.

    Here? “Fugheddaboutit.” Our local branch has a new machine. Can only use it to check things out – why? Because someone’d lose their job if you could check books back this way. Plus, the library is yet another dingy run down building common to this town. No magazines in the racks. Sleeping homeless and mentally ill in front of the computer terminals. Oh, they use the same software as Seattle on their computer terminals. But of course, out in Seattle, I could use a computer for 2 hours a day. Here? 45 minutes. Also, in Seattle, I could print up to 30 pages B&W a week on the library printer. Here? 30 cents per page. Same software, same printers. Just the corruption here drives up the prices. Also, in the borough of Manhattan, with 2 million residents, none of the libraries are open late and only *1* branch is open at all on weekends. Don’t kids need them to do homework? Corruption – can’t afford it, even though Seattle could at a much lower tax rate (and again, no income tax.)

    We’re already planning on moving back in a few years, at least to see if the job’s not progressed enough to keep us here. We will *not* live in NJ or Conn. Commuting is hideous; coworkers regularly spend *4 hours a day* commuting by the overcrowded, hot, broken rail and bus lines. 4 hours a day! Are you freaking kidding me?

    My advice to coworkers unhappy in NYC – get out! There’s way better worlds out there, the PNW’s awesome (yeah it rains – so what? It has the best weather in the country in July->early September, and most days in the PNW would be ‘top 10 days’ in this NYC s**thole). Plus that area is way less racial than this one, the west is way ahead of the east and south in that regard.

    1. That was hilarious. Ive visited SEA, PTL and NYC, never lived in them. Plenty of homeless crazies in WA and OR too. It was a stupid move to go to NYC for the same salary. I did not know that culture was that expensive. I imagine that monthly/yearly passes on some stuff and getting last minute or special deal tickets are the way to go. $50 just to look at the view from a mid sized building?!
      Missy, PTL and SEA are nice if you can stand clouds and rain 9 months a year. Take a visit during winter. Both more very outdoors oriented. I’d say they are a poor persons San Francisco. Not sure about living in them without a car though. Portland has 2 Santacons. Not even NYC has that! Although NYC has a 30,000 person Santacon.

      1. You’re agreeing with me. Museum passes don’t help; hey, Seattle’s got 1 day a month free museums. NYC? Nahh. Some do it one day a year.

        We still run our A/C in NYC even though it’s nearly December, because the weather’s such crap and this overpriced s*hole gets so hot. Started it up in April, so working on nearly 8 months of it.

        Seattle and Portland – yep, it rains. Lived near Seattle for 10+ years. You get used to it. Beats the crap out of snow, sleet and especially the 100+ hot/humid stuff for weeks at a time. Did I mention what the unCivil Servants do about the snow? Very little – it sticks around and the sidewalks glaze over anywhere where NYC is responsible for its removal. Wait till March till it thaws. Makes for fun walking. And on and on, such high taxes, such lousy rotten services. 3d world attitude, 3d world government, high-end 1st world prices.

        Other towns that get more snow – Denver, Chicago, Boston – way WAY better at snow removal. Not NYC, as 3d world s*holes goes, its a particularly bad one. Try living there, Alejandro, I grew up here prior to moving to NJ then Seattle. It’s way worse than when we moved away. Stay away from this place and tell your friends it ain’t worth it, unless you enjoy the cockroaches and shocking prices. This town’s got 1 thing: a good publicist

      2. Biggest misconception is that Seattle rains all the time. I’m from Indiana originally, I’ll take Seattle’s mild mostly sunny winters any day over 6 months of grey, wet, cold Indiana ones.

        1. Steve, don’t let the big secret out! It’s a rule for Seattlelites to tell everyone how awful the weather is – so they don’t move there! Just joking; Seattle’s summers are the best on the planet, still miss them having moved away a couple years back.

          1. Missing home

            So true! I have lived all over the west coast. Seattle, Portland, eastern WA and OR. Oh and a few other major cities. Now in San Diego and I am shocked after 5 years of SoCal “glory” I miss the PNW terribly. Yes the endless sunny days and general friendly attitude of SoCal is nice but is it worth it to pay insanely high taxes for bad roads, high crime, healthcare at 3times the price of anywhere else, horrid politicians, water that is grosser than gross and a general Entitled attitude from the super rich. I am a gardener and there is not enough pesticide in the world to kills these amazon like giant bugs that swallow my entire plants daily. The price of housing is killing us and I think about the clean air and open spaces every single day. The rain really isn’t that bad and like they say when the sun comes out its like Heaven on earth up North. No one uses an umbrella unless you just got your hair done, tough it out and bitch about it if you have too. On a very personal note, my husband and I had a better relationship (physically) in Seattle because we were always cuddled up by a fire watching movies. I miss the grumpy honest attitudes of PNW too. I would rather hear a honest grump than a SoCal big talker that can’t keep his/her word. Oh and no one up there gives a crap about labels. Fancy labels are Ford F150’s and North Face or Columbia sports gear. I used to be so annoyed by Californians living in Oregon, lol, now I might become one of them!

    2. Very nice and well Stated! Left NYC in 2015 because of what you just mentioned. It was a love and hate relationship for myself. I basically had a nervous breakdown from a few different factors. Just too expensive.

      Unfortunately I picked a shitty alternative. Inland Empire, California. Boy o boy..I got used to the hard MOFOs of NYC and personalities and I miss it on a daily basis but not enough to make me move back there. This place is too laid back. Very hot in the summers and extremely dry with a high cost of living. Crime is terrible especially petty theft and it comes at you in all directions. The disease of passive aggressive behavior out here is horrendous and is enough to make you insane. It’s very hard to get menial tasks done without having to miss work.

      I will be moving to washington where it has a good balance

  57. Hello all – I live in Pittsburgh and have lived here my whole life. There are many things to be said for Pittsburgh (extremely friendly city – yes, people do talk to each other here and are very nice to new people and strangers) and it’s not as snotty and mean as NYC, DC and Philly can tend to be.
    We are in Western, PA – perhaps that is why, we are not exactly on the coast.
    But I’ve tired of the just ridiculous cold winters and also, the drug problem that has seemed to grip my fair city. Heroin is so on the rise it is ridiculous. I was having a job interview and I could see out the window behind my interviewers head, and watched 2 drug deals go down as I was trying to tell him why he should hire me. Hire me?! Ha! He should pay amazing bucks to anyone who’d dare work there! Anyway, I am getting off track.
    I need to find a place to raise my son, who is 7 months old and being a late in life unexpected baby (I am 42) – he is the light of my life and reason for being. I am a single mom and happy to be, but find that lately, the suburban moms just aren’t talking to me. I guess being in unhappy marriages will turn people into wicked witches but I am looking to move to a place where i will be easily accepted and even embraced. I’ve always had sort of a free-spirited vibe that drove my parents nuts.
    I’ve actually been looking at Oregon and think it might be the place for us but this is a huge jump so I want to make darned sure. If I am going to move my son and me across the country to a place where I don’t know a soul, I want to make sure I am making at least an educated and informed move. I am excited, and dreamed of Cali, but honestly – I’m not so sure I could afford it. As a single mom, I have to be very practical and realize that my son and I will want to have a life outside our humble house, so Cali may be just too expensive. That is why I have been checking out Oregon and thus far my research shows that it would be a choice move.
    I’d love to hear some opinions and thoughts about that state, and Washington state. I am a total lover of nature and wouldn’t mind a place that had gorgeous mountains and also views of the ocean as I am definitely at home on the beach too. My hobbies are less granola though as my business is jewelry and sort of the glam side and not the friendship bracelet type ;) though there is something to be said for “hemp”. I’m an artistic type and really do love to be around a place where there is some culture and unique types. I’d need a larger city at least within an hour so I could take advantage of good health care, which is important and of course I want my son to have a great education because I realize that is my most important responsibility, to raise a person who can actually take care of himself one day. Education is huge in assisting with that task.
    I could care less about sports but my boy seems to be very “boy” in his likes as his head already turns at the sight of large trucks and it amazes me how much at 7 months old he’s already shown in his tastes to be male oriented. I’d love for him to be able to surf and take sailing lessons rather than golf or soccer but do realize that choice will be up to him. I’m not a sporty person but I do enjoy hiking and yoga and can (and do) do both of those without a class. I’m hoping I have a little artist on my hands, but I may have the next Steeler quarterback instead, so I want him to have options for his hobbies and pursuits.

    I’ve enjoyed this article so much and am glad to see a lot of states represented! I’ve considered Colorado as a choice as well, and loved reading about the state. I want the ocean though, I want to be within an hour or so of one so Colorado doesn’t fit the bill. I’ve been to Texas and enjoyed Dallas a lot – the people were so nice and teased me constantly about being a Steeler fan (even though as I said, I could care less about professional sports). I spent time in Chicago as well, and while there is a lot to do and I loved the big lake, I found the people of that city quite rude and self absorbed. Texas is not exactly pretty as someone else already said, I found most of it flat and boring and run down looking too. I missed the green and hills of Pennsylvania while I was there. My friend lives in Arizona and no thank you 115 degrees. “Dry heat” or not, she can’t even let her dog out without worrying about burnt paw pads and dehydration in the summer.
    So please, someone fill this soon to be moving new mom in on the other states of the West Coast! Oh and I already know Seattle is rainy and cloudy – and I’ve already been there as Pittsburgh has very similar rain and clouds and I’ve had it with those!
    Best regards,
    Melissa :)

    1. Hi Melissa,

      I know this is an old post, but wanted to respond. I am a Pittsburgh native that spent 11 years in Denver, CO. I can say any move to anywhere on the West coast is worth it even for the new experience. You say you want the ocean but the ocean is very cold up in Oregon and Washington. You can enjoy looking at it, but probably wouldnt enjoy getting in it and its not a place to go tanning either.

      Did you end up making the move at all? I would google search something like, “best place to raise a family in the west” or even “best towns for single moms”. Usually someone has put together something to that effect.

      It also depends on your intended career. Lots of factors come into play with where you want to go. Even though you wrote a lot Im still not clear on exactly what you are looking for besides getting away from Pittsburgh. And if thats the case, I say just figure out a way to go anywhere and experience a little renewal in your life.


    2. I left Pittsburgh in 1975 and have lived in a number of states and now live in Iowa. I bought my old home on the south side of Pittsburgh as a second home last year. yes Pittsburgh is a nice town and I have a lot of family still there. The drive from Iowa to Pittsburgh is a bit much thou.

  58. Peter Richards

    Dumbest thread ever and the rationales used to support your decision to live on the West coast are mind numbing. There is no overall “best place to live” there is only the “best place for you”.

  59. Actually….. Given the option, the best city in California is San Diego. San Francisco is fun to visit, but it is too cold and frequently foggy! If you are going to live the California life style; you want 70 degree+ days and beaches which are useable.

    If I was going live in the Bay Area, I would chose more inland areas such as Walnut Creek or Concord, or such. Steady sunshine and more warmth.

  60. Consider this: The stereotype is that the East Coast and West Coast are happening, and the rest is, flyover country. I think that is narrow-minded and very short-cited! You are so fortunate as an American; you live in a huge diverse country. Consider: The Great Lakes. 21% of the worlds fresh water (and fresh water is wealth! A smart person would think about this).

    We can go into the beauty of Michigan in autumn (it’s stunning!). Or the one thousand-plus lakes in Minnesota.

    And then again, there is Chicago. A liberal bastion on America’s third coast:


    There is much good about four seasons. Midwesterners live well.

      1. Except: you are communicating with San Francisco foreigners. That’s narrow.
        San Francisco is not really a good representation of a typical American city (and
        I say this is a big fan of San Francisco).

        You are implying that there are few foreigners in the Midwest? Hello?
        What planet do you live on?

        Half of my neighborhood consists of immigrants!
        Even I was stunned by the diversity of surnames at my kid’s graduation ceremony.

        You need to get out more. Dude, with all due respect, you are underexposed!

          1. Chicagoteacher

            I love Chicago b/c I can walk to the grocery store and take public transit to great restaurants, museums and sporting events.

            I don’t like the corrupt politics and not knowing where all my tax money goes. There are less taxes in Florida (income, sales), but they make less. However, where does all the Chicago tax money go ?

            However, I love going to Florida and California for the better weather and no tax on grocery store food. Also love theme parks.

            I’m also convinced I would be healthier living in a warm environment as I would be out and about more in the winter and spring.

      2. Sam,

        Diversity in the Midwest:


        Ohio….. Amazing….. BTW, a very beautiful state!

        1. Yea, Ohio works if you are white, straight, have money, and are traditional. If you deviate from the norm IN ANY WAY, Ohio is not for you. Heck, anywhere in the Midwest is not for you. (And I’ve lived in Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus, Detroit, and Lansing). NYC is fantastic but expensive, California is too laid back. Always felt like everyone has ADD. Florida is nice but there are crazies down there.

        2. Ew you like Ohio? I live here and never have I seen crappier people! And the gangster idiots and drugs! White trash, conservatives, rednecks, domestic violence, male privilege, ugh! I want out of here!

        3. Columbus and Yellow Springs are the only places worth living in Ohio. But weather sucks ass! Humidity is unbearable. I can’t wait to move to West coast!!

      3. I can’t believe that a financial advisor looking for business uses words like ” donno ” wow. There goes you’re credibility.
        You are extremely opinionated and closed minded. I too am from cali. And would love to go back. However it is not affordable anymore and the state government is awful.

        1. Who is a financial advisor looking for him more business? This is a personal finance blog written by me about my experiences and opinions of the world. Nobody pays me anything as all the content is free to help entertain and educate people about the financial matters.

          I have lived on both coasts for over 10 years, and I’ve lived overseas for 13 years, I’ve visited over 60 countries and speak English, Mandarin, and Spanish. This site gets over 1 million pages a month and I’ve written over 1300 posts since 2009. Why am I close minded? How about you?

          Here is a post that may help you if you’re looking for a financial advisor: https://www.financialsamurai.com/questions-to-ask-think-before-hiring-a-financial-advisor/

          1. Understand. How does financial advise have anything to do with negative opinions about people that don’t like California. Trust me I love the place. Born and raised and kick myself often for selling my home when I left. As I can’t go back now. I respect other people’s opinions who didn’t grow up west coast so don’t feel the same.

          2. Also. I do agree on what you say about healthy people make happy people. When I try to explain that to people. They don’t get it. There is much more depression where I live. And a severe lack of motivation and work ethic.

  61. I wish people would realize that the West isn’t just the west coast. I’ve lived in San Diego and loved it, don’t get me wrong, but I would include the mountain west as well regarding lifestyle. I live in Albuquerque and must say this is the best climate with four seasons. Nothing too extreme, with most snow in the mountains a short 15 minute drive away. Great views, little traffic, cheap cost of living, unique food, and a lifetime to explore the outdoors. I’d compare it to California but with less people and no beach.

  62. east coasterrr

    This is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever read.

    First off, thanks for your opinion, but no. You can’t sum up people based on which coast they’re living at. Because the east coast is made up if many states which consist of states from different regions… new england, southern and so on.

    Also, since when does the west coast mean just California? What about Washington and Oregon? They are wonderful and beautiful states with completely different lifestyles, yet you just go on about Cali?

    No person in their right mind can take any of this article seriously.

        1. Eastcoastveggiessuck

          The east has the highest cancer rates, obesity and segregation in the nation. Are you an idiot?! Quality of life is higher. All your veggies come from us. The acid levels are the highest in the nation which equals shitty food. Stop showing your jealousy.

          1. highest obesity rates are actually in the south… northeast has a lot of indoor stuff- gyms, tennis, ice rinks, pools, so there are athletic things to do in bad weather and there is good healthcare. lots of ethnic food and you can get good veggies, but they are from CA, MEX or SA in the winter.

        2. Eastcoastveggiessuck

          You mean good veggies and quality of life are a joke. On top of tech hub. You are just jealous cause of the obesity, segregation, and horrible conditions due to massive urbanization on the “northeast”. Quality of life high = better coast. Any scholar will tell you that.

    1. I totally agree. I’m from Florida & lived in Georgia for three years then we moved out to California. We both hate it here and are looking forward to going home. We have not found much positive here. But we don’t go around bashing the state. And the earthquakes outweigh other storms as far as destruction. Get a grip and call it like it is. A writer who had nothing to say.

      1. Sorry to hear about the earthquake damages. When did you experience them and how much was damaged? That is good you think that the East Coast hurricanes are much better.

  63. Well….. Chicago (Cook County) has more millionaires than San Francisco.

    171,000 millionaire households. Second highest concentration in the USA (behind L.A.)

      1. January & February are rough, but the rest of the year isn’t bad. Four seasons
        like the east coast. Beaches & volley ball nets in the summer. Urban energetic
        environment like NYC with a more laid back, relaxed (west coast like) culture.

        And a biggie: You can drive to work without getting stuck on the Bay Bridge!

        Besides ORD is only a few hours flying time from anywhere in the country.

        1. Ah yes. Totally agree the bay bridge sucks. That’s why I live in SF!

          I am pretty sure December, March, and April are still cold as hell!

          I’m spoiled. Only place I can go after SF is Hawaii.

  64. I live in Austin and love it. The heat is dry, not humid. 110 degrees feels better than 90 degrees in the south. The diversity is great, and there is a lot to do here – ever heard of SXSW or ACL? I get emails all the time for events happening around here. The night life is great here. The city is also very biker friendly and health conscious. Tons of live bands and literally hundreds of bars within walking distance of each other. I come from South Carolina, so Austin is definitely a huge step up. However, I haven’t lived in CA, so I can’t compare the two yet.

    As a successful internet entrepreneur, I couldn’t justify moving to CA because of the insane taxes. It’s not worth an extra 40-50k a year for me to live in CA. I’d rather have my home base here, and have a larger budget for traveling. Let me ask you this, if you’d make the same no matter where you lived, would you still choose CA? So far this year, I’ve paid for me + my closest friends to go to the Florida Keys for two weeks, been to Hawaii for two weeks, a week in Panama City Beach for spring break, traveled back to see my family 4 separate times in SC, and have plans to go to Austrailia for a month in the winter. The total expenses of doing all of those trips + my rent in Austin for the year + my budget for Australia combined is less than just the state taxes I’d pay to live in CA. That’s not even including any other increases in cost of living. For those of us that operate location independent businesses, having a home base in CA doesn’t make much sense in my opinion.

    I’ve also met a ton of entrepreneurs here! It seems like everyone here is trying to start up a business. Also, being “weird” is accepted here. No one cares what you wear, how you look, if you have tattoos, if you go downtown in a tank top, what car you drive, or where you come from.

    Another perspective is my experience meeting people. It sort of reminds me of how it was when I backpacked Europe. No one cares about what I do for a living, they just want to have a good time. People value experiences more here.

    Traffic also isn’t that bad, you just have to avoid I-35 during peak hours (you can go on toll roads and hit virtually no traffic during peak hours). I also love the flat roads here! I’ll just say it’s fun when the speed limit is 85, there’s no traffic and the road is flat enough to see for a mile :).

    1. I’ve heard a lot of good things about Austin and I definitely do like the no state income taxes and cheap real estate prices. I’d like to give it a go, but my roots are in California and Hawaii already.

  65. Truth!
    ??????Tell me which major city is the best on the West to go wild!
    Party hard to trance and electronic music-
    Is it San Francisco Los Angeles Seattle San Diego or Portland for a great town to party and feel like you’re having fun and will never grow old?????????

    1. Doe Texas pay folks to live there? B/c I’ve been, and I’ve got to say Texas can’t even come close to California or Hawaii. Sweltering heat, not very diverse, hard to get to Europe or Asia, and flat lands. BBQ is good though!

  66. As a California native I absolutely love California, and I am well aware of the many cultural , geographic, and intellectual advantages of living on the West Coast versus many other places in this country. That being said, I have to admit that California does fall short in many regards. While people do tend to be more laid back, I would disagree with the statement that they “work to live” while people on the East Coast “live to work”. With the rising cost of living and the poor economy it is certainly not a walk in the park to live there. Most people I know, myself included, have to work very hard just to make ends meet, and then they don’t have enough left over to take advantage of the many wonderful things available to them. Long story short, California is a beautiful place to live but when it comes to some very important aspects of lifestyle it simply doesn’t compare.

  67. i lived in camas, wa and then moved to malden, ma…trust me west coast is better..especially the seafood …west coasters seem more laid back east not so much!!! never had a accident until i moved to east coast…everyone just too darn much in a hurry….oh and btw i live in wv now….and plan to move my family back home to wa very soon….

    1. I trust you! I just wonder why East Coasters don’t trust us. I’ve been on both coasts for well over a decade each and the West Coast is by far a better place to live!

  68. Sam, re: this post are we feeling slightly inflammatory? :)

    I lived most of my life on the East Coast, but did do a six year stint out on the West Coast.
    Here are my thoughts:

    – While the West Coast is more accessible to Asia, the East Coast is more accessible to Europe. It is kind of a wash.
    – New York City has the best of everything the world has to offer. Restaurants, beautiful people, spirituality, world-class networking and parties, and world culture.
    – New York City is also incredibly convenient. The public transportation system, although we complain about it, is incredibly efficient and the only time I rent a car is when I want to drive to the mountains upstate. When I was in San Diego, an entire four hour evening would be taken up just by hitting Home Depot and Whole Foods.
    – Camping is so much better on the East Coast, because you don’t have to buy “primitive camping” permits, worry about starting a forest fire, or any of that crap. In the Catskills or Adirondacks, you simply walk up a trail, walk half a mile off-trail, find a flat surface, arrange rocks into a fire ring and eat up the s’mores. No fees to pay, no papers to carry.
    – California is going bankrupt. Its infrastructure is falling apart. Doing business in the state is a nightmare. The tax rate is quite high.
    – People are net average focused more here than on the WC. I really had a difficult time in San Diego, finding people that could hold their attention for long enough to even get a single task done, let alone find an inner circle of people who were truly ambitious enough to put 12-18 hour days into something worth living for.

    That said, there are things I like about the West Coast better. The air is more “open,” the people are definitely more open, and there is less judgement. The scenery is nicer, the winter sports are better, and the culture is more down to earth.

    I have sought to find a west coast openness with an east coast focus. They do exist, in rare people.

  69. Hey everybody, thank you so much for having this conversation (hat tip to the moderator).

    My wife and me are in the middle of a huge decision to move to the East coast or the West coast. We are originally from the East Coast (Im NYC and she is Philly), but I’ve had a job in Israel for the last 3 years, and we really fell in love with the climate in (hot and dry), although not so much the politics. So we are moving back to the US (with a baby girl on the way), and now we have this choice of East or West coast, even though both our families are in the East. But we really do hate the weather, and we would love to live around nature, and I have a chance to have a fresh start with work.

    We are going on a pilot trip in 3 days – to spend a month driving around California and get a feel of the place, so we can make a better decision about moving. Our dream location is to find a house in the woods with 40min drive to a hospital and other civilization. This may not be so realistic – but we are both dreaming of having no neighbors (at least in a 100 meter radius) for a year, and a forest as a backyard. We dont want entertainment, we just want quiet. But because of work, and baby needs, we still want to be in driving distance of a decent city. So ideally we dont want to end up in the suburbs, but rather some cabin in the woods that we can build up into a family home. Just for reference I ran a healthy catering company in Jerusalem, and now I work remotely doing Marketing for a tech start up (based in NJ actually), and I hope I can pursue both things in California.

    Our itinerary is to land in San Jose, and check out things around La Honda and Canta Cruz as well as isolated houses north of Silicon valley, and then drive down to LA and check out Ojai and coastal towns, and then make our way to Phoenix and check out Flagstaff and Payson, finally flying out of Phoenix back to Israel.

    We would love to get some advice about this, as well as more suggestions for communities to check out around that route. We are not looking at PNW because its too cold, or Vegas because it lacks all greens and gets too hot, but we are open to more locations.


    1. Sam, if you want paradise, come o the Bay Area. You can find an inexpensive house in the woods that is cheap and quite for under $500,000 no problem, especially if you are willing to commute 40minutes.

      Life is way better out here, and I’ve lived on both coasts for 10+ years!

      1. I know this is over 2 yrs for a reply. But you did mentioned $500,000 dollars inexpensive and cheap in the same paragraph huh? Please next time say its all relative.

          1. I see you are refering to a limitied few. Well thats the arrogance of the whole primence of this artical. I too live in a area where mediman househould income in about $110,000 and the average home price is $600,000 or more. Still to refer to a $500,000 doller home as “cheap” shows the blindness in your idea of average income being 6 figures and reality of most average incomes being mid 5 figure range or lower. Enjoy your drought.

            1. Why so toxic, friend? To each our own. I’m happy you enjoy your lifestyle, but please be aware that there are many reasons to choose one location over another. How about respecting and celebrating our differences?

  70. Excuse me but there are TONS of kooky fruit loops that come out of california :O I would say that state is one of the worst actually. They can hide out up in their homes in the forest far from everyone.

    1. spoken like a true inbred hick retard. In fact most Californians were NOT born in California. They are transplants from places your awful hell hole state. Please tell them to go home!

      1. Only a true and utter moron would answer a post that is two years old only to insult the poster. You really sound more like a Floridian than a Californian.

  71. OK – so I moved to the east coast about a year and a half ago – and I am so missing the West Coast like hell right now – I pray I make it back next spring – but let me make a list for you East Coast fans:

    1) weather – no snow to deal with and no humidity to deal with – the “beautiful” weather months on the east coast exist almost every single month on the west coast.
    2) You can go outside and not be dinner for mosquitos – I have never seen so many bugs in my life..never.
    3) Beauty. There is absolutely no comparison to the beautiful vistas, oceans and landscapes of the West to the East. Heck, the light is even better.
    4) People. The people are less high strung and a bit more easygoing. I do love the New York attitude, but day after day it gets old. As the song says, “leave New York before it makes you hard”
    5) So when I tell people I am from California – they always look at me and say “why are you here” – again, take note that I am in New Jersey and not in New York.

    – there is truth to the saying “just another day in paradise” –

  72. I was born in MA & grew up in CT. I miss the changing of seasons, especially fall when the leaves change. I hated the winters freezing, the summers are hot & humid. My whole family live in MA, CT & VT, NH & I miss being near them. I’ve lived in So Ca for 40+ yrs, traveled & lived overseas & So Ca is hands down the best climate with so many activities to do. The only earthquake that was pretty bad was in Northridge, we’ve had small jolts nothing major. I’d find it difficult to live any where else guess I’ve become a So Caifornian & even lost my New England accent

  73. I love reading other people’s ideas of what California is. I grew up here (San Diego) but left for college and didn’t come back till age 26 (to Los Angeles). I’m posting an article soon about my love/hate relationship with California which I think you’ll enjoy! I’ll link back here when it’s up.

  74. I lived for years in Bellingham, Washington. When the economy went south my partner lost his job and we had to move…my cousin presented an opportunity in Texas and we went. The WORST decision of my life! I HATE Texas and the South with a passion!! I MISS the West Coast horribly!
    In Wash. State we were near the ocean AND the mountains, a day and a half drive from San Francisco, a 4 + hour flight from Hawai’i (where we went yearly). The weather, while a little drippy and dark at times, was moderate (unlike Texas summers where it’s ALWAYS over 100!). It did snow in winter sometimes but it never lasted and fall and winter were usually fairly temperate…50s and 60s were not uncommon.
    As to the flora here in Texas…it’s great if you like cactus A LOT. I don’t. I do like the palm trees but can’t get out to enjoy them because it’s so DAMNED HOT! In Washington I had a gorgeous backyard planted with bamboo, hardy olive trees, lilac, sycamore, maple. In my front yard I had a hardy palm and magnolia.
    If you saw “Twilight”…yes, the Wash. Coast really does look like that…mystical, ethereal, ancient.
    OK, I’ve said my piece.

    1. “It’s great if you like cactus” LOL! Love it man.

      I love Texas for the no state taxes, but it’s still not enough for me to live there! Wyoming, Washington, or Lake Tahoe Nevada!

    2. Washington is horrible. We have eight months of rain and it is cloudy all but two months of the year. Please, as a California transplant I beg you, do not move here. You will hate it!!! Let us deal with the misery of the PNW so the rest of you can live in harmony.

  75. I have a few more reasons why I love being out on the West Coast, specifically California, although I absolutely adore East Coast and it’s people
    1. Multicultural: if you look at Los Angeles or San Francisco (yes some people tend to forget that Nor Cal is a part of Cali whether they like So Cal or not) you see so many different ethnicities and people who really enjoy sharing their cultures i.e. the Hispanic population down in LA, Chinatown, etc.
    2. Politics: you can be liberal here without getting your head chopped off, that’s what I’m most thankfull for first. We’re much more open to varying political opinions, and we are a powerful force for change. And it doesn’t hurt that we have a HUGE number of people living here, earth to politicians! Look at our number of delegates in the House of Representatives! Seriously, even when we lose delegates we still outrank everyone in the country. Lightbulbs should be going on about now.
    3. Beaches, mountains, deserts, valleys, rain, snow, sun, all in one state?! enough said
    4. Las Vegas, Hawaii, Seattle, need I say more?
    And also, for all of you people insulting us because we’re such hipsters apparently, and we are so casual never dress up, all of that bullshit. THINK AGAIN! These rudes comments harassing us aren’t true at all. Half of you have never even been to the West Coast, and those of you who have didn’t take the time to truly observe and get to know us. Unsophisticated? Ever heard of LACMA? The Getty? The Grove or the Americana? Griffith Park Observatory? Ever been to Downtown LA? San Francisco (love that city)? SFMOMA? The Deyoung? Give us a chance, and we don’t all hate you, I mean I LOVE the East Coast, New York, Boston, it’s to die for.
    Just noticed when people think West Coast and East Coast we automatically think California and New York, or LA and NYC, or SF and Boston.
    Point is, no area is better than the other! Quit the stereotypes! Enjoy everyones cultures and be accepting of those different than your own! That’s what the West Coast is all about!

      1. Well, my wife and I are ready to move to the San Diego “no water desert” ASAP. The frigid, bitter winters in the Ohio Valley coupled with hot, humid and sticky summers have really run their course. Not to mention day-after-day grey skies and (apparently) more rain than Seattle.

        Then, there’s the rude, ignorant and OSU-obsessed people that live in Columbus. We’ve taken three trips to San Diego in the last eighteen months and quickly decided this city is where we belong, droughts or not.

        1. Ok my wife is from there and yes she misses home ( cali thats her home ) She is a native and berates what she calls other ” transplants” that have runied her state of california. She absoluty LOVES it back here on the east coast for its beauty greenery less polluted air and more tolerable weather ( she like 4 seasonal weather…except summer) She is so glad that she left California….enjoy.your drought.

  76. I’m thinking about relocating to Houston, Tx. If you live there or have visited there recently can you fill me in on the pros and cons of living there, taxes, weather, jobs, schools etc… Thanks

    1. We moved from Wash. State to Austin, Texas…my advice…DO NOT COME TO TEXAS!! The summers are horrendously hot and humid, well over 100 ALL summer. Remember too, the whole state here is in a bad drought expected to last YEARS.
      Also: Texas is NOT a pretty state. It just looks run down. Also, Houston is a very dangerous city.
      Stay where you are OR go to the West Coast!

    2. Lance Spencer

      Colorado, possibly Fort Collins or Boulder, is where I would like to hang my hat, but for now…

      I’m currently living in Dallas, Tx, which to give you some perspective, is not that bad.

      Pros: No state income, cheap real estate (my house is 1500 sq ft dark hard wood floors updated not fancy) with my house only costing 130k on the NW side nice clean very little crime type of town, lots of well paying jobs especially for the middle class, lots of sun (swimming in the lakes and pools), good mountain bike trails and clubs, perfect weather in the spring and fall and cool in the winter, good food, friendly people (but a lot of them are boring lazy and fat).

      Cons: Too hot during June and July unless you are swimming, then it’s perfect. Mostly Flat in Dallas (highest elv 495.1 ft and especially in Houston (which I do not suggest), Austin has beautiful rolling hills. The general culture among the majority of Texans revolves around drinking and eating, this is not a good thing in my opinion. A huge spectator state. Natural beauty is limited compared to the likes of Cali, Washington, Colorado etc. but some of the prairies and rolling hills are beautiful.

      My take: Cali would be my choice if I was raking it in, but struggling to save and pay rent does not sound like fun to me even in Hawaii. Seattle rains too much, I’ve been there 3 times and it is downright dreadful, despite the amazing views and the plush forest, which I love.

      The East Coast just is not even an option.

      1. Good make sure your fake lawn house does not burn up ….keep freezing in the cold pacific ocean in the summer( while I enjoy warmer water in the Atlantic in the Sumner) keep paying over $ 4:00 a gal. For gas ….oh and watch you desert state dry up due to lack of water( water police lol really?) And get terrorfied at the 1st drop of snow.lol wimps

        1. Are you in the ocean in January in New England? Fake lawn house? what? Gas is currently $3 a gallon. I doubt gas in the DC, NYC, Boston, Philly etc areas is much cheaper then CA. In fact it does snow in the mountain on West coast. Highest elevation is 14,500 ft.

            1. One thing the desert dwellers ( californians) are amazed of here ( besides greenery and trees) are the lower price of gas among others.

        2. Of all the comments, I need to reply to this one. Say what you’d like to say, however, what is a fake lawn house? Also I’m sure you meant four dollars a gallon and not four o’ clock a gallon. If you’re going to insult, do it correctly, with spell check. ;)

          1. Ok non news reader FAKE lawns are the new wave in your drought ridden state now ( california)You seem to be one of those who dispite request not to over water their lawns.People are installing more drought resistant plants in their yards or are spraying their dry dormant lawns( good home owners) green or installing FAKE turf ( also good homeowners). Also california has the highest gas prices in the country. Here in MD we consider $2.60 gl for gas high.Do your research better. You wont seem as stupid.

            1. This kind of attitude is why I’m thrilled to have moved back to California, after having lived on the East Coast for seven years.

              You are right about gas prices being much less in Maryland…but I love my solar panels and electric car. Never have to go to a gas station.

            2. Why come to this green paradise in the 1st place .Your ” california is superrior” arogance attitude and eveything should be like california take on the rest of the states ( im married to one like that from cali.)are the reasons californians find it harder to adjust outside your bubble. Look at the narrow thinking self centered reply from this artical ” The West Coast its that much better”. You people have the worst attitude, driving, air quality and worsinging ongoing drought yet you think you arebetter than the restof the 49 states…….what blindness. Enjoy your drought.

  77. Welcome back! The California government needs your support! :)

    I’ve been tempted to go back to NYC now that I’m no longer poor b/c I looooved living in NYC. But, maybe not!

  78. I’m from the east coast. Born and raised throughout all of FL and even Canada once. I got family all through the east coast. Lived in Chicago at one point. I’m back in the east coast after living in San Antonio Texas for 5 years. I can say this with certainly, the east coast sucks ass. The people are rude as hell, materialistic, weather is HORRIBLY hot and humid, pay is low, too many damn snakes n alligators, mosquitoes, ghetto ass people who love to fight, and I’m just sick of it all. In one year, I’m relocating to the west and I can’t wait. It sucks that I have to deal with one more hot and hellishly humid summer before I leave. In central FL no less. :(

    i’m sick of being too cold and too hot. I cannot handle the extremes anymore. Living in Texas which is basically almost the west coast for me, I loved it loved it loved. The people were nice, the houses were HUGE, the weather was way more tolerable than FL!! No humidity!! That was a joy! Everything was SO different. The clouds were different, the sunlight was different. I liked it way more than FL but it’s not enough for me. I want the REAL west coasts.

    I’ve been fascinated with the west coast lifestyle for YEARS even as a child. I love the whole suburban thing that Southern California has going on. I ABSOLUTELY am in LOVE with the houses. Completely gorgeous. I am going to own one when I have enough money. I love the weather. Better than the east coast. And everything abt CA fits me. Except the air quality.

    When I move, as soon as I get on the I-10 W towards Mobile Alabama, I’m going to give the east coast and FL the finger. Counting down the days.

    1. Where did you work in a gas station??? Lol if Texas is heaven to you than you must have been used to the lowest level of hell. Im not making fun of you but you seem to based GA, SC, NC, VA, MD, DE, NJ, NY,RI, MA, NH, ME on a s*it hole in FL.

  79. I grew up in Virginia and a tourist beach town in Maryland. I traveled around to several east coast cities when I lived there. I moved away when I was 23, and have lived in Portland OR, Dallas, and now San Diego. All my west coast comments are going to be based on San Diego, not LA. The east coast is nice but it is very different. The attitudes are much less laid back, more aggressive. People always want to fight about something. San Diego is a fantastic city – it’s very clean, the weather is great, there’s lots of natural beauty and outdoor activities. In the summer there are free concerts every day of the week. There are some spots where traffic is bad during rush hour. Dallas was far worse for traffic! San Diego housing is less expensive than DC or NY. The ghettos are not nearly as bad as other large cities. Crime rates are far lower than most cities.

    I’m seeing this through my middle class eyes. I live in a VERY middle class neighborhood. I wouldn’t want to buy at current property values though, I still think it is too much. I’m sure the city would not seem so nice if I was barely making rent.

    The smog is pesky. We have air and water quality problems, especially since we import so much water (80% of it). We have overcrowding problems; I wouldn’t even think of going to a Costco on a Saturday afternoon. We also import a lot of electricity, so that is a risk if a the big earthquake ever comes.

    West Coast isn’t perfect but it is very different. It suits some people far better than others. Same for East Coast. I prefer San Diego, but I wouldn’t live in LA for anything. I WOULD live in NYC, but I don’t know if I’d stay long because of the high prices and brutal winters.

    1. Thanks for your perspective! LA does kind of suck.. however, if one can live and work around the Manhattan Beach, Santa Monic area.. it’s not that bad at all.

      IT’s good that you’ve lived on both sides and look at things from a middle class perspective. The poorer you are, the better the West coast is b/c a poor person enjoys the same sunshine as a rich person!

      1. Been there done that. Its VERY hard to live and work in the same neighborhood in the 4 county LA region unless you live and work in the distant suburbs. Rent in San Bernadino and Riverside counties is cheap. Commute is 2 hrs to LA. The pay in those places is half the pay in LA. The good paying jobs are near sky high priced housing. In Santa Monica and Manhattan Beach a decent one bedroom apt with an off street parking space costs $2K/month in 2014. Thats a mortgage payment on a nice house in 3/4 of the USA.
        Thus people do hour long or more commutes each way to and from work. Traffic moves at 20 MPH in the 3 hour morning rush hour and 4 hour evening rush hour.

        1. Gotta work from home on the internet. The traffic is so atrocious. I do love the beach side communities though down in LA.

          Newport Beach and Laguna Beach are pretty darn awesome.

  80. I have never been past the central time zone, so I really have no room to bash the east, but I can brag about my wonderful state! Colorado is absolutely beautiful and quite frankly it is an underrated place to live. The home of the Rocky Mountains provides probably the best skiing and snowboarding in the US. I’ve snowboarded in Idaho, and Utah and they honestly don’t even compare to how good the slopes are in Colorado as well as the scenery. Another thing I love about Colorado is because of the thin and crisp clean air. It makes it tough for people who have never been here to adjust to the altitude, but if you get use to it, you really don’t want to go back. I remember visiting Missouri way back when, and man let me tell you, the state should re-named to Misery because of the humidity just made it miserable!

    If one thing that separates the east from the west, in my opinion it has to be wildlife and outdoor wilderness activities. Colorado alone is one of the best if not the best state for angling and hunting. I could name about 10 different rivers here in Colorado alone that are just great for fishing. I have also hunted for elk, white tail, pheasant, and turkey in different parts of Colorado. Pagosa Springs (south Colorado) is one of most visited tourist destinations in America!! For its beauty and wildlife! I would highly recommend Pagosa Springs to anyone who is thinking about visiting colorful Colorado!

    1. I agree that Colorado is great for the great outdoors. The sun is always shining too. The only issue is that it’s hard to make the big bucks there and it’s not the Mecca of innovation as it is here in San Francisco.

      If one can relatively easily make $150,000-$250,0000 in CO, I’m there since it goes a mug longer way there.

      1. The cost of living including real estate in the San Fran/SJ bay area is triple the rest of the US. Only NYC and some parts of Alaska and Hawaii are as expensive. If you’re making $150,00-200,000 in the SF/San Jose region you only need to make $50,000-$75,000 in much of the rest of the nation to have a similar standard of living. Most people in the Bay area have long commutes and are living in sh!tty apartments with roommates and no parking.

    2. “Pagosa Springs, one of most visited tourist destinations in America!!”?

      Huh? I lived there, and on the other side of Wolf Creek pass in Southfork for 1/2 my adult life. And worked up at Wolf Creek Ski Area for 14 of those years.

      Its one of the least crowded big mountain area in Colorado. It beautiful, it makes the front range of CO look like a cesspool – however I would be suprised if its in the top 500 “most visted” in America.

    3. I’m from Rhode Island originally, currently in Queens, NY. If you enjoy CO for the wildlife and nature you should check out Maine. Definitely one of the most underrated states.

  81. Doctor Stock

    I have a good friend who moved from the East coast to the West coast… and he say’s he’ll never go back. The temperatures are more suitable for his desires, especially in the Winter, and the entrepreneurial spirit is far more robust. I’ve visited both… and tend to agree. I don’t even mind the rainier upper West coast – Seattle.

      1. I live in Michigan I moved here in 2012 on the east coast im from northern California and I really miss my cali home but I like it here somewhat its just the weather it sucks here in Michigan.

        1. I grew up in Michigan around the lower east side an hour west of Detroit.. The weather does suck here.. The lifestyle is horrible, people are miserable, unfriendly and pissed all the time.. There is nothing adventurous or outdoorsy. Driving on the freeways is like torture and for the most part people are overweight and lazy..

          1. Hey stupid freeways are what you drought ridden cali fools refer too all highways.Get with the other 49 states program.

          2. openeyedamerican

            I am originally from the Boston area, and was transferred to Silicon Valley 20+ years ago with my job. I’ve never moved back. Not because of my cushy job in the land of technology toys, but due to the easy going relaxed atmosphere and sheer breathtaking beauty of the west coast. In fact, I’ve since left the corporate world that brought me here! The people, a unique blend of highly driven career wise yet with an easy, mellow nature that defies any stress within. Overall, people on the west are not as high strung, and can even hold a political debate without getting all saber-tooth tigered and angry.

            Which brings me to an important point not made here. That one “reason” people on the East claim its “best, with this “us vs them” thing that never existed in the world? Its ironically the thing that MAKES people back East so extreme and high strung—-that “cluster of historically significant cities” all exclaiming unsustainable political rants of war as “service” to our nation, so socially engineered into thinking we need all those “defense” contractors to “protect our way of life”. No open minds realizing its never been about defense, but a war economy.

            So, on top of the palm trees swaying gently in the breeze, eucalyptus therapy and sheer beauty of the hills and Golden Gate bridge from my living room window, people can let go of deeply imbedded beliefs, think outside the box of “norm”. Oh, California has its sheer of cognitive dissonance with respect to our nations obsession with military—-beautiful San Diego has a military base there, so its the one negative of that incredibly beautiful area.

            I can just imagine the high strung folks chanting “you wouldn’t be able to say this stuff without the ‘freedom’ someone died for”. Let it go already, life is good.

  82. This post is so true!

    I grew up in the Northeast, and have lived on the West coast for the past six years. I often think about moving back East, but can’t imagine giving up everything that comes with living out here. I just love it. When I was back in NJ over the summer, my sister and I had to drive an hour north to find a decent place to hike with some meaningful elevation. Our west, everything is hills. Mountain-like hills. And it’s just beautiful. It also helps that my professional industry is based out here. I love the West coast!

  83. I lived in Mid-West – Indiana and been here in Colorado for the past 16 years. I also frequently travel to the West Coast as well. When I lived in Indiana, most of the business I had to deal with were in NJ, CT, NY. If I was required to live on one of the coast, I take West Coast, hands down.

    I agree, the main attraction for the WC is outdoor recreation, weather and more of a laid back/work to live mindset. I don’t know how much things has changed on the EC but here is where the WC wins me over:

    1. You can go anywhere to eat from a shack to a very fine place and no one cares how you dress

    2. No one cares about position, status or possessions, therefore, a person who is “entry level” can talk directly with a VP of a company and be on first name basis and ideas regardless of position have equal footing.

    When I traveled to the EC, I got in trouble for not being formal when dealing with people and I have been told that I need to know my place. Also we had to dress nice even outside of work hours and when something was needed, it was already considered late. You were expected to deliver this instant !

    In a different job, we had counterparts in Maryland and you are expected to put work first and everything else plays second fiddle even to vacations. Going on vacation, you had to leave contact info and be expected to drop everything at a moments notice to return to work !

    In my current job, I deal with customers in many parts of the country and I find that customers in the EC especially the Northeast are very difficult to work with. In my previous job, I was ordered to move to the EC and I took a layoff instead ! I was offered the same money but it would have been difficult to adjust to the EX culture and lifestyle change.

    1. I’m late to this conversation. But I have to weigh in on this. I live on the east coast, specifically North Carolina (10th most populous state and growing). I love the west coast, there are many beautiful places like the coast in Orange County, etc. When in California, you feel “special.” However, my problem with California vs the east is that when I’m there, I feel far removed from the rest of the country. Because when you’re on the west coast, you are far far away from the rest of the movers and shakers in this country. The majority of the US population is in the east – you hardly ever even see an out-of-state license plate in California because it is soooooo farrrrr from everything else. I like the east because in a matter of a few hours – 12 or less – I can leave NC and be in NYC or in Miami by car. If I want to drive to DC for the weekend and experience great food and all of the culture there, I can. If I want to enjoy a beautiful summer day on a wide beach with WARM Atlantic water (Pacific is brrrrr), I can. Yes, especially in the south, who your family is etc., can be VERY important to some people. But to others, no one cares. I live in a very progressive, affluent area, namely Raleigh. Here we have both Duke University and the nation’s first public University – UNC as well as NC State U. Over 75% of my city’s adult population holds at least a bachelor’s degree. We have the research triangle park here, home to more tech firms than anywhere outside of the Silicon Valley and Boston. Also, I find the west coast to be a bit “too granola” for my tastes. Yes we too have folks like that here – but in much smaller numbers. Nice people, but I am much more driven and career/money oriented/type A for that. I like living on the coast with the most – the east. I feel alive here. And people keep talking about the weather in LA. But I have been in LA in the winter and it can get cold there. Florida is MUCH nicer in the winter. Finally, when people from California move here, I have found many of them to be know-it-alls (back in California this and back in CA we did it like that). And they always complain about the humidity. OK…it is HUMID in the summer here and we like it – it is what we are used to. And that is why we jump in the WARM Atlantic water in the summer! Ha ha!

  84. Sunil from The Extra Money Blog

    valid points and i agree with them. here is my question(s)

    how do you feel about California’s financial condition? if this hasn’t impacted your area yet, in what way (how) do you anticipate it impacting?

    many also talk about the high cost of living (property values really is what i think) as a big reason for not moving despite the ideal weather. any thoughts?

    1. I think the Federal government and the rest of the country will bail California out if things get too bad before the State raises taxes on us any more frankly. Hence, I’m not worried.

      We’re all Americans, right? :)

      It’s not a right to live in California and an expensive place… so if you want to live here, you have to earn it. Or, live in Minnesota.

  85. I would take heat over 9 months of Seattle rain. Unless you are a skier, there is nothing to do here other than wait for the summer to roll around. Even the simplest of things like running around a lake cannot be done with poor weather in the PNW.

    I am wondering what exactly do you refer to when you say diversity? I went to school at University of Texas at Austin and University of Chicago. If diversity means people from different parts of the world bringing ideas together, Austin was as good as Chicago. I havent been to Berkeley, Stanford, and agree that the University of California system has more depth (great campuses at Berkeley, LA, Davis, SB, SD, Irvine). Texas university system is limited to Austin, Rice and Texas A&M as premeire univs.

    Someone in this thread commented about cities being dirty on the east coast due to higher density populations. But that is also very true of most large cities on the west coast as well. Seattle doesnt fare well when it comes to cleanliness. And the roads in Washington state cannot be compared to those in Texas. Of course, the problem with Texas is that old money is racist there – but there are going to die in the next 20 years.

  86. I was doing some reading and ran into this website. I have lived in Seattle, Austin, Chicago. Austin has clearly been the best place by a long shot. I know that CA has great weather. But the weather in Washington and Oregon isnt anything to boast about. The summers are fantastic but the winters are terrible. Months without seeing any sun is the norm in Seattle. And the rain is dreadful – there is a reason its called the rainy city. Portland weather is extremely similar. As far as the people, I find them to be pretty cold compared to the people in the southern states. Just for a point of reference, I was born in Asia and have no beef in this game.

    1. True…. Portland and Seattle have some damn dreary weather in the winter. I guess I’m just really talking about California :)

      But, Washington has NO state taxes so I love them!

      1. I work for a large multinational with offices in both the bay area and WA. If you move to CA, you automatically get a 15% salary hike to compensate for the state tax and the cost of living. The point being having state tax or not makes very little difference. I know I will be paid more if I move to CA.

        Also, why so down on Texas? Weather is just fine, except for 2 months at the height of summer. And the larger metros – Austin, San Antonio, Houston – are predominantly blue. They dont have the natural variety to offer though. It looks like Texas is the fastest growing state and will join the 30Million plus club (currently only CA) within a decade.

        1. That’s really great they pay more for living in more expensive places! If that’s the case, heck yeah send me to Paris and other fantastic locales!

          Regarding Texass, come on, you know it really sucks there except for no state taxes either. Super sweltering hot for more like 5 months of the year, little diversity, and just really not a comparable place to live if one has a choice. There’s a reason why it’s called the Armpit of America!

  87. I’m not sure if I can handle the snow on a daily basis and having to shovel snow just to get my car out. I like what we have here in SoCal and the weather is perfect for me.

    Ahh, those east coast bias. I know it happens a lot in college basketball and football on how east coast teams are always better. I guess, it can also happen in non-sport issues!

  88. Recently having been in the east coast traveling around I will say it is SO beautiful in Autumn. Wow how electric orange/red some of the leaves get. But along with leaves comes really bad seasonal allergies!! So even though I’m happy to take visits to the East in the Fall I definitely love quickly returning back to the west coast so I don’t end up sneezing my head off. ;)

  89. Ronald Loves Nike

    I will definitely say there is something incredible about the West Coast. My trip to San Francisco is definitely one to remember and I would move there in a heartbeat. i lived on the East Coast and loved the energy as well. The Mid-West is great as well.

  90. This post is definitely making me reconsider my position on not moving out west from the East Coast. However, with Cali’s new rules on minimum wage, I wonder how it’s trying to help its citizens afford the high cost of living.

  91. A few good things about the West coast

    – outside transportation and a home you can actually save money because u have fewer places to spend your disposable income on vs a walking city like NYC.

    -generic supermarkets are the best in terms of product offering but you don’t have as many niche gourmet food places

    -cheaper to date due to the smaller supply of overly expensive restaurants(mexican anyone?) and places like theaters, concert halls, etc but movie theaters are everywhere.

    -good domestic wine is cheap

    -less running around time to schedule activities due to driving distances and traffic

    – a bevy of beauties that sort of look the same due to cheap cosmetic surgery

    -less money on clothing because t-shrt and jeans or shorts can be worn everywhere. no need for expensive suits, sports jackets. Also no need to have a seasonal wardrobe.

    -cars last longer

    -day labor is cheap to acquire

    -people are collectively passive aggressive until they get into their cars to vent their rage

    -an hour late for a date or event is acceptable because bad traffic is always the at ready excuse.

  92. Beautiful Weather
    -Weather is overrated, i loved life more in London(miserable weather) than i did on the west coast. Plus here is alot to be said for discernable seasonal changes that signify lifes progression.

    Entrepreneurial Opportunities
    -complete hogwash, makes sense if your talking specifically tech companies but entrepreneurs are located all over this great country, they are not regional specific.

    Access To Asia
    -excellent benefit if you love to do biz or travel to Asia. cheap airfares.

    Vacation Paradise
    – Yet the West coast elite love to party in the Hamptons in the summer or Miami during any other part of the year? West coast is great if your vacation involves mostly outdoor activities.

    World Class Winter Sports
    – Skiing is still considered an elitist sport in this country, particularly in an economic downturn.

    More Peaceful People.
    – Nonsense, have u ever heard of violent west coast gangs? Do u also know that these gangs have branched out from california into the other 50 states?

    Less Crooks.
    -I am beginning to wonder if u live in a gated community. the west coast has more prisons than any other region of the country; more gangs, and more bank robberies. The state of california spends upwards of 10% of it’s budget maintaining the prison system.

    Environmental Movement
    – yeah but how do explain the dwindling water supply so people can water their perfect lawns and the lack of a cohesive public transportation system so everyone can drive their own car? the so called environmental movement is a pure publicity.

    Great Athletics
    – I can’t argue, there is a hotbed of athletic talent due to all year round training facilities

    -didn’t u tell me that ‘intangibles” don’t count? hear any good earthquake, brush fire or mudslide jokes lately?

  93. I recently relocated to Cali from the South and I’m pleased with my decision. However the uncertainty that comes along with earthquakes really bothers me!

  94. Ugh. I was born and raised in California, and lived there for 33 years. I HATED it.

    California has the highest crime of any state I’ve ever lived in, and the worst traffic.
    While I lived in California I:
    — had my truck hit by an illegal immigrant in a van, who then ran.
    — been assaulted on the street by a gang of hispanics
    — been sexually assaulted by a gang of hispanics (separate from the above incident)
    — had a drunk hispanic put his fist through a neighbor’s apartment window (we had to call the cops on him, and get him an ambulance since his hand was shredded from the glass).
    — was stuck in more stand-still traffic than I’d ever care to remember.
    — paying $1200 a month for a tiny 2-bedroom apartment in a crime-ridden barrio, because that’s all my husband and I could afford.
    — eventually had to move out of California because my husband and I divorced and I could not afford to live in CA on my own.

    I was miserable in California. Then again, I was also poor in California. The people who like California tend to be rich, and they can isolate themselves in tiny well-to-do pockets of California and never see the crime, assault, and barrios like the poor people do.

    However, the rest of the West Coast seems nice. I loved visiting Seattle, and my friends in Oregon claim they love it there, so I guess WA. and OR. are decent. Just California is mostly a dive.

    My most fave state living in so far was Florida. GORGEOUS weather, low-cost living, and a bunch of nice people. Plus, I loved all the wildlife there. (I like snakes, bugs and humidity a lot!)

    1. Yikes, that sounds like a very bad experience. I have to imagine that if you had more money to spend, and didn’t go through a divorce, you’d like the West Coast a lot better?

      Florida is nice, but I’ve been there in July, August, September and it is just way too humid. I love their no state income tax though for sure! Can’t beat that!

      1. I suppose if I had a ton of money, CA would be ok. Like I stated, there are rich pockets that are really nice. But most of CA is a dive. There are very few REAL middle class areas! It’s all either super-rich, or very poor. Because of inflated housing prices, what would be considered middle-class anywhere else is ‘rich’ in SoCal. (ie, a house that goes for $150,000 in a normal state goes for $600,000 in SoCal)

        I love humidity, so summers in Florida are wonderful for me.
        My skin actually feels smooth and soft for once! :)
        And oh yes, I loved the “No state income tax” in Florida. It was actually affordable to live there. Too bad I couldn’t find any employment there though. *sad*

    2. Pissed off immigrant

      Look, just because you have miserable experiences with Hispanic folks doesn’t mean you have to take it out on them by referring to them as gangs. I live in Texas, in the Houston suburbs, and the white folks here are some of the most stupid, vile, ethnocentric people I have ever came across. All they like to do is make racist jokes, shoot their stupid guns, race to become as obese as Eric Cartman, jack off to old Dolly Parton posters, join Ku Klux Klan rallies, and fantasize about killing minorities. Compare that to the work ethic of the Mexicans here, despite facing continued racial abuse from white people like you. So why do white folks like you act superior and more cultured than Hispanics, when many of you cannot even speak in proper English despite it being your first fucking language? You worry so much about Muslims, yet you think it’s okay to shoot up a Walmart because of the “Mexican invasion”. Seriously, you people still think that most Canadians live in igloos and that Colombia is a part of Mexico! Dumbasses.

      Speaking of Texas as a place to live (I speak just because it’s a popular relocation for reactionary right-wingers in both coasts), just because you have a few pockets of civility in the cities, it doesn’t mean that you’re the best state. Lack of public transportation, flat nondescript landscape in much of the state, less education (Bad public schools and just three reputable universities in the entire state! Ridiculous.), Houston having a higher murder rate than “hellholes” like LA and NYC, frequent road rage shootings, rampant Christian fundamentalism, anti-intellecutualism, rural areas (especially in East Texas) that are more run-down than Venezuela, toxins and chemicals in the air, I can go on.

      But also Americans (especially white Americans) need to stop being so proudly racist and ethnocentric. Like killing black people for sport isn’t cool, especially in 2020.

  95. i grew up on the East coast and about 6 years ago moved to LA….trust me the WEST COAST IS THE BEST COAST :)

  96. Houston and DC were in the top 5… This survey’s a joke, right? It obviously didn’t include crime frequency and cost of livinig, or quality of life. It was sort of based on job opportunity, something called ‘elite graduates’ and data from Moody’s (the same Moody’s that rated many liar loans bundled as CDO’s as AAA+ so we know *they’re* reliable).

    Anyway, please, stay away from the PNW. We have enough people. All you Young’uns should follow BostonToDC’s advice and live your lives in the northeast corridor. Stay in the Northeast and be content in your superiority. In fact, stay east of the Mississippi so you don’t bother the Minneapolans, since it was in the top 5, and they have that weather thing going on in the winter.

    1. I think the survey excludes the West b/c of our higher cost of living. Also, perhaps wealthy people out West paid the publication money to keep the West out of the limelight. Don’t want overpopulation out here!

    2. Yes, do what I say… do exactly as “igotadose” has said and follow every bit of my advice. (Did I even give any ???)

    1. Saw it. You couldn’t pay me to live in Texas. And also, guess where the writer is from? Bingo.

      I, on the otherhand, have lived for many many years on both coasts. I have no agenda, and no monetary benefit. I just encourage those out East who have never been out West to give it a try. You’ll wonder to yourself why you didn’t do so earlier.

  97. Both this and the east coast bit read as “protest too much”. Maybe Sensei, you are tempted to move back east but trying to convince yourself not to?

    Anyway I’m in Seattle, and it’s nice to count it as west coast but the weather sucks for 9-10 months of the year. The skiing is great if you drive to the mountains though!

  98. Sam,

    I thought you were originally from Australia…?

    I always thought the Melbourne is like London and Sydney is like New York with California weather!


  99. I would move back to the west coast tomorrow if I could afford it. I live in the middle of the country now. I miss the Pacific ocean. I lived on the East coast years and years ago, and the weather was not as comfortable, too humid. West coast weather, especially the Central California coast and north into Oregon, is much more comfortable.

    Watching the sunset on the west coast, standing on a cliff, the water seems so huge, and you can actually see the curvature of the Earth, magnificent. I missed that when I was living on the east coast. And I miss it now.

    Another thing for an old west coaster like myself, born and raised on the beaches of the west coast, when you go to the beach on the East Coast, the water is on the wrong side…….

    As for it being a lifestyle. When we lost our jobs out there (aerospace) in the mid ’90’s, we moved to the midwest to get by, just because the cost of living was SO incredibly much cheaper. Unfortunately, we found we cannot go back now.

    And that is a downer about either coast, no doubt, the cost of living is so high. I want to go back, but can only visit now and again. If I could find a way to do it, we’d be back to the west coast.

    Where we live now is beautiful though. We have rolling hills, trees, prairies, and a relaxed, good way of life here. So, I’m content to stay here too. But I DO miss the ocean and the feel in the air, and the only place I’ve ever been that the air feels like that is the West Coast.

    1. Merry, what a beautiful comment. I feel what you are saying so vividly. I know what you mean regarding the water being on “the wrong side” on the East Coast. Doesn’t help the water is so dark and murky too.

      Have you ever walked the Atlantic City boardwalk before? Oh how depressing it can be. There is a certain peace out there though.

      “Watching the sunset on the west coast, standing on a cliff, the water seems so huge, and you can actually see the curvature of the Earth, magnificent. I missed that when I was living on the east coast. And I miss it now.” Love this comment. It’s barely 4:30am here on Sunday and I think I know what I’ll be doing right before sunrise!

      It’s good to know that people on both coasts can move inland to lower their cost of living. Do come back and visit often.

      Thnx, Sam

  100. Hiya Sam.

    Having lived in the NJ/NY area for the first 40 years of my life, and now in the Seattle area for the last 7, it’s no contest. Seattle living is infinitely better than NY/NYC living.

    1. The seasons. The PNW has 4 identifiable, long seasons. NY/NJ has about 1 month of spring, 1 month of fall, and the rest is broiling, soggy summer or bitter, snow-drenched, winter. And thunderstorms often. In the PNW, a typical summer day would be a ‘top 10 day’ in NY/NJ; we have them by the dozen.
    2. Fall. No contest. Fall color out here is better than the Berkshires or New Hampshire. And it’s just outside the door. No lining up in cars for hours to see tree in color.
    3. Cost. Any way you slice it vs. NY or NJ, it’s *much less expensive here.* Lower taxes (no income tax in WA!). Lower insurance. Lower rents, housing, …. A short ride from the metro area and you can do so well in terms of your housing dollar. Not so in NY/NJ. It’s much easier to live frugally here – there’s the fabulous outdoors available 9 months a year for exploring, cheap entertainment provided by Nature. NY/NJ? Drive a few hours and you and a few thousand of your new closest friends will be there. Summers at the shore? If you can find a square inch for your blanket after paying the beach fees. Beach fees! *laugh* Needles and medical waste!
    4. Crime and corruption. So endemic in NY/NJ, so rare here that things that wouldn’t make the back page of a NY paper are big news in Seattle and followed for months. NJ is like ‘comic opera’ criminality, heck, entire town councils and mayoralties regularly get thrown in jail. Corruption’s a way of life and firmly entrenched.
    5. Traffic. This one’s tricky – the PNW does a pretty good job of traffic engineering, so there’s highways that haul you through major metro areas. But, nothing can save you from increasing population, the curse that will do in prosperity. I think overall though, average traffic delays are less, density is less, off-hours driving is pretty empty and even though there’s not really good mass transit, you can still get places fairly readily in cars.
    6. Culture. Oh, o.k. NY is a cultural mecca. Seattle isn’t. +1 for the Northeast. But you can’t afford to live in NYC and its filthy and crowded and crime ridden.

    I tell my East Coast friends that the PNW is the best place in the world to live, and I’ve seen a lot of it. I can’t speak for California like your other posters have, but I think the climate alone would be sufficient to put it on ‘better than the east coast’ in my book

    1. The Pacific North West is definitely a place I was thinking about retiring since like you said, it’s cheaper with NO STATE TAX in Washington! I mean, if you can save 10% a year in taxes on a $100,000 fixed income, that’s pretty good!

      Since you’ve lived in the NY/NJ area for 40 years before moving out West, we’re going to have to take your word for it that West Coast living really is better. What took you so long?

      1. Opportunity and brainwashing. There’s an embedded culture that ‘everything in the Northeast is better’ and you’re strongly discouraged from leaving.
        People trace their families back for centuries there. Folks are born, grow up and
        die in their hometowns. My family was mad at me for years for having the temerity
        to move to NJ from NYC! Why couldn’t I stay at home?!

        Plus, it’s a big move when all you’ve known well, is where you grow up. I got a job
        offer from a great company, and married someone from NoCal who loathed NJ and
        was very good at showing me the delights of the West. So, file me under ‘slow learner.

  101. UPDATE: I am an avid follower of many lifestyle design type bloggers and I’ve come to the realization that the large majority i.e. 75%+ of them hail from the East Coast! This is another datapoint for why West Coast living is better than East Coast living.

    Very few people from the West Coast go ahead and drop everything to try and make it on their own or travel the world, because it’s already so lovely out here!

    Anybody like to debate?

  102. You guys are so lucky having the West coast within your borders (plus so many other opportunities).

    I live in London in the UK, which would very much be an East Coast city in US terms. (In fact, it’s influence and the influence of other European capitals has partly seeded the culture of the East Coast of the US).

    Move to the West Coast and you end up in rainy rural Wales or Cornwall. Beautiful in its own right, but hardly Santa Monica.

    Then again, we have 20 different languages and nations on our doorstep here. But I hate languages! ;)

    Hurrah for counting your blessings!

    1. Do only the English hate languages cause I’m so impressed and amazed that Europeans can speak so many languages! Blows Americans out of the water! The joy of Eurorailing is so awesome. Consider yourself lucky you get to see so many places in such a short distance!

    1. Are you for real admin? You get paid to lie about the west coast or live in a drought induced bubble? If its.so SUPER HARD to leave why are soooo many transplants ( which we dont want) move back here to the east coast from California?

  103. Wow, that photo of the beach is like.. eye porn. Did you take it? It’s beautiful.

    YES… west is best!!

    The list you created hits it to a tee =)

    We have the Oregon Coast (so beautiful), fantastic food (more immigrants to the West, so more variety and delicious food), sushi (good sushi trumps all),

    Haha thanks for mentioning me as a contribution from Canada! It’s not too cold! Today we have 24 degree weather (in Vancouver). RIM is good though their share prices went down 7% today- no competition for iPhone 4, really. We have Hollywood North, lol (Twilight is filmed here), Celine Dion (lol).

    1. “West is best” lol. Nice.

      Vancouver is one of the most beautiful cities I’ve been to as well. It’s a great launching point for Alaskan cruises!

      Alas, no, I did not take the picture. Wish I did! Don’t go too crazy with Rob Pattison fevor now you here??

  104. Sorry, Canada not on the radar unfortunately. Too cold. Besides RIMM/Blackberry, I’m trying to think what other awesome contributions come from Canada. Hockey I suppose. Feel free to write a post!

    Young and Thrifty too!

  105. Nunzio Bruno

    Hey Sam!

    I love how intense this little rivalry has become. I def enjoyed your hand chopping analogy and you have some great points about the West Coast. I mean I’m still a fan of the time zone and the culture (being in Mass) but I can’t argue with anything you listed up there. I think it has a lot to do with pride and a sense of ownership. Where ever you end up or settle in is obviously the right place to be..right?! So even when you try to take it from an objective approach – your pool of participants might not lol. I mean even me included. Be it ever so humble (and cold, and muggy, and expensive heating billed) there’s no place like home :)

    As far as spending more than you earn goes. That’s a whole other conversation for another blog post.

    1. No rivalry brotha, because there’s not really competition! “Booo, hissss” I can hear from the crowd :) I admire you for enjoying being “cold, and muggy with an expensive heating bill”. Gotta stay true to your roots!

      So if youre happy, stay by all means. If you’re not, feel free to explore!

  106. Money Reasons

    Another like feature of today’s technology would be that if you had a currently had a prime job, you could still move to Cali, and telecommute into work. Yeah, you’d have to travel more often, back and forth a bit, but it’s not impossible!

    I think a lot of people, just can’t afford it too though. It’s expensive out west, and a lot of hassle to move, strip the kids from friends, not to mention relatives.

    If I were 21 again, I would have tried harder to move out west while I was young!

    Say, how is the pollen count on the West Coast? Since you don’t have the seasons, I’m guessing the pollen activity is a little less dramatic than the East or does everybody have allergy problems?

  107. Rocky Mountain High (not in Colorado)

    I was born and raised in California. After marriage and kids we escaped to the Rocky Mountains. Congestion, crime, high cost of living drove us away. All my family is in CA so we visit a lot. Great place to visit, California but a nightmare to live in. Both Northern and Southern, whenever I visit I am appalled at the traffic and how LONG it takes to get anywhere. Yeah, you have the beach and skiing both close by but it is not much fun getting there! We have mountains almost out our back door. Great skiing in Winter and hiking in summer (but watch out for the bears!). We have a lake about 8 miles away that takes…about 10 minutes to drive to. We have rivers for fishing, rafting, canoeing. Yellowstone National Park a few hours drive away (never visit in Summer…in early fall it is fabulous). The biggest crimes in the police blotter are paint-balled cars and barking dogs. No sales tax in Montana. No state income tax in Wyoming. The bad economy has not hit this area nearly as hard as other areas. There is so much about California that I love (particularly visiting in the Winter) but the Rocky Mountain states provide a wonderful lifestyle that -for me- beats California.

  108. haha Yeah I’ve lived on both coasts and although there are perks about both, it’s nice having less extreme weather in the West. That’s also easier on home repairs. We still can get floods in some areas in a bad storm every few years, but it’s definitely less common to have to deal with storm water damage, molds, and humidity wreaking havoc on homes in the west.

    1. Yeah, the massive temperature changes wreak havoc on homes, increasing maintenance costs such as roof repair, paint, and bursting pipes. Good point there seriously.

      Also, many dealers will advertise “California cars” b/c they have also been exposed to less harsh elements.

  109. given the financial resources, I would definitely live on the West Coast. I have relatives up there and they just love the beautiful weather.

  110. I think what’s getting lost in this interesting discussion is that the west coast and east coast are clearly inferior to the midwest! We’ve got a great standard of living, reasonable costs, great family oriented cities, beautiful outdoors (10,000 lakes here in MN), wonderful change of seasons and so much more! Silly east and west coasters. :)

    1. The midwest is devoid of cultural diversity, and it’s too extreme in weather in the summer and winter.

    2. I am from the adirondacks and love the east coast, might be going to school near tahoe next year, that or Colorado. I lived in the midwest during my highschool years and boy does it suck made a bunch of friends miss people etc. But standard of living? There isn’t one. You can’t talk about specific little pockets every part of the country is going to have nice pockets but its a majority game and well the majority of the midwest does not have the standard of living, the level of education, or the beauty of either coasts. The midwest just cannot even be considered unless your into completely flat land, virtually no woods, plenty of racism in many areas, ughh I don’t even want to get started the majority demographic in the midwest is that cycle of “my parents didnt go to college” get a girl pregnant in your early 20s get a minimum wage job buy a trailer and your done, that is not the majority demographic in the Northeast.

      1. There is one indisputable fact about the Northeast though: it’s cold as hell for 5 months of the year! Life is too short to life 40% of the year in uncomfortable weather. Come to California or Hawaii. It is beautiful out here!

        1. Gonna sound unpopular but my vote is for the Midwest. I know it’s considered flyover territory but that’s what makes is great. Winters might be a bitch but we don’t have to worry about wildfires or 2 hr commutes to work, it’s all a trade off. Detroit, Kansas city, Cleveland as well as Big 10 college schools have been producing some champions of late or at least staying somewhat relevant in competition. Culture might be a little dull but we have the Great lakes to explore or a short drive to Chicago to get a quick fix for any foodie/ art / architecture nut. Yeah wages for most professions might be adjusted down 10-15% compared to the coasts but your dollar goes further with the lower cost of living. I know or have heard of many people who have lived on the coasts who grind it out year after year just to make their mortgage and pay the exorbitant taxes and insurance costs. Only after 15 years of paying down that mortgage, they might be able to cash out and realize a capital gain (that is if the timing of the RE market works in their favor). Most times though, they get transferred to another overpriced area and unfortunately have to start over after very little amortization. The peaks and troughs in middle of the country are less pronounced which make for a better long term buy and hold strategy. Instead of putting all my money in one high priced property, I can buy a dozen homes in diverse neighborhoods and yield a higher monthly return. As far as travel, we love Hawaii, has been our first love (honeymoon destination) and is still only a 10 hr flight with layover at ORD or DFW. However, after 10 vacays there, we are finding it to be getting a little sketchy and quite crowded. Since Hawaii has lost some of it’s charm, no worries, we live in the Midwest and can take advantage of our local for a short 10 hr flight East and visit Paris or the Mediterranean, problem solved! In short, Midwest living is the ultimate in “stealth wealth” lifestyle LOL.

            1. FutureBlogger

              Hello FS,

              Your final statement here is the only thing that irritates me about you.

              I’m sure from a financial perspective it seems like investing in the cheaper midwest RE market is the way to go, but what about the morality of it?

              You don’t want to live here, and I understand. I hate the winter here even though it’s usually pretty mild where I am. However, you, and many others, don’t have any problem dumping your money here. Potentially jacking up the cost of living.

              It’s no secret that the average wage in the midwest is lower, maybe a reflection of the lower cost of living. You can’t say that increasing the cost of living won’t matter though, because, as several other people have stated, increased cost of living doesn’t necessarily translate to an equal increase in wages. In a perfect world I suppose…

              Do you consider the effect you, and like-minded investors, are going to have on the people here that can already barely make ends meet? I’m sure you do, but I’m curious to see what your thoughts are.

              1. I think it’s important to allow Americans to invest in America. Otherwise, it feels like a form of discrimination. Given we live in the land of the free, it is important to allow people to be free with their lives and with their capital. Allowing foreigners, who don’t pay US taxes Buy up our land in excess seems a little different.

                Whether you like it or not, capital is very fluid. I generally like to write things I had of what will happen in the future. So given you are reading this now, hopefully you can buy up your pieces of America and profit from the next wave of capital.

                If I annoy you for wanting to improve my life, I think it’s going to be very hard for you to get ahead if you don’t focus on yourself. As a future blogger, you’ve got to be open to change and always think about providing value to your readers.

          1. These threads are idiotic. People move to where they prefer if they can afford to live there. The problem is that people have been fleeing much of the country and world for generations. The places where they flee to like California have gotten so expensive that the middle class and lower class can’t afford them . But rather then folks rationally moving to Alabama or Ohio, they stay and starve. And more join them every year. Now if you want to buy a house you must leave the coasts for the heartland. It’s not a choice.
            The choice is either buying property elsewhere or being poor and commuting 4 hrs a day in California. That’s the reality for the 90%.

            1. “Stay and starve,” hmmm! Everything is rational in the end. So perhaps we should not concern ourselves with anybody, because we will rightfully do something to change if we are agitated enough.

  111. while i agree that the west coast has its perks, i dont agree with your comment about all crooks coming from the east coast. there are plenty of politicians, businessmen, and regular joe shmoes that live out west that are just as crooked as those famous east coast ones you mentioned
    Preferred Financial Services

  112. Jeff @ sustainablelifeblog

    Well, after all of this east coast-west coast (it’s very mid nineties, if you ask me) I think I’ll join in on the conversation. I’ll use my blog as a platform to say why the mountain west is superior to all these places. I’d also like to invite red and money beagle to state why they believe their regions (south, midwest) are better than the others. Anyone from the sunbelt?

    @bucksome – bigge smalls/notorious BIG was a rap star from the early/mid nineties.

    1. Feel free to write a post and highlight why you think the Mountain West can even hold a candle against the two coasts. Will be a fun read and a very hard post to write!

      Go Timberwolves!

  113. Living in the West means that within an hour or two drive you can be at the beach, in the mountains, in a forest, on the prairie, or in the desert. We have all five regions within driving distance. That’s what makes, not only California great, but other west coast states as well. WARNING: The wonderful weather and the urge to be outdoors may cause people to spend more on vacations, shopping, and their car.
    P.S. Your comment section looks strange. I think I’m on the mobile theme. What’s up with that?

  114. EARTHQUAKES, TRAFFIC AND SOME OF THE HIGHEST TAXES WORLDWIDE! Monday Night football should be at night, not 530 like it is in Cali! Plus we have Biggie Smalls.

    1. Bucksome Boomer

      I wouldn’t say highest taxes worldwide; but they are higher than a lot of places.

      I love having MNF earlier in the evening but we go to bed early to start work at 7 am for…East Coast clients.

      P.S. What is Biggie Smalls?

      1. Awww dated yourself! It was Biggie vs Tupac in the east coast vs west coast rap fued in the mid 90s lol

        It was a joke….kinda!

        1. Ahh I loved mid-90’s rap! All the stuff on the radio now is junk. Oh Tupac, forgot to mention that Tupac came from the West, therefore West is best! =)

          Callliiifooorrnniiiaaa Love!

          I have a feud with my boyfriend about Tupac and Biggie. I’m a Tupac fan he’s a Biggie fan.

          1. Actually Tupac was originally from NYC. And you’re only a few hours from the beaches here on the east coast as well. Hence, the word COAST.

    2. Oh man… ya see! Your comment is EXACTLY my last point in my post. We in the WC don’t have to say sensationalist comments to make ourselves feel better, b/c things are so nice out here!

      Shame on you Evan!

    3. A lot of people have been anticipating about that BIG ONE here in California and from time to time, we’ve been having those earthquake drills and emergency preparedness awareness. We’ve had a lot of minor earthquakes the past few months but the shake-outs are not that bad. Some of them would just last around 10 to 20 seconds.

      Traffic also exist in the east coast, just check out Atlanta and New York, it’s probably worse than Los Angeles.

    4. honestly earthquakes are such a small factor. unless you live in sf there really is nothing to worry about. and also biggie is the best rapper of all time no doubt but we have snoop dr dre nate dog among many other greats.


  115. I guess part of the reason why you were attacked for your East Coast Living – Is It Really That Bad? post because you made the assumption that it “really is that bad” lol.

    Although I do see your honest attempt at trying to find what’s good about the East Coast though. The “time zone dominance” was particularly original and insightful.

    I’ve found people attack when they have no other defense. Like kids saying “you’re ugly” or “but you’re stupid” kind of thing.

    Forget both coasts! Hawaii is where it’s at!


  116. I love that I have the mountains, beach, and desert all with an hours reach from me. Makes for some great recreational activities! and we have Disneyland. :D

    1. Pac-10 rules…LOL.. ooops maybe I better stop. I’m not trying to start a controversy here but I hope Oregon beats Auburn!!!

      Disneyland, beaches, close to Hawaii, nice weather. If I want some snow, I can always go to Big Bear, Mt Baldy, etc but at least no need to deal with it on a daily basis. Only in California where you can go to a place with a snow in the morning and go to the beach in the afternoon in the same day during winter time… LOL