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Entertaining Thoughts of a Move for Job in San Mateo

By NuttBoxer following x   2018 Aug 7, 3:58pm 1,427 views   35 comments   watch   sfw   quote     share    


My corporate headquarters for the US is there. I'm currently in a small office in SD. Normally I would never even consider this move, but after 2.5 years, and seeing others who started in similar positions at corporate get promoted, staying here seems like a road to nowhere. But after all the horror stories of the bay area, wondering if I wouldn't be taking a huge paycut due to housing cost, in addition to subjecting myself to even MORE traffic(I can barely take my 17 mile, 45 minute commute here). I know many of you live, or have lived in the Bay Area, thoughts?

And are these rental listings legit:
https://www.zillow.com/homes/for_rent/19545089_zpid/2-_beds/0-436320_price/0-1750_mp/38.455739,-121.37558,36.976226,-123.353119_rect/8_zm/
https://sfbay.craigslist.org/sby/apa/d/spacious-home-for-rent/6664163250.html

Was expecting MUCH higher prices.

1   MAGA   ignore (1)   2018 Aug 7, 4:20pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I lived and worked in that area for a number of years. You will like it.
2   Heraclitusstudent   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 7, 4:35pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

A 2 br is usually around $3000. If you don't have kids and get paid well, it's ok.
3   mell   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 7, 4:47pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

These are likely in law type dwellings.Those are typically cheaper. Good climate in the south bay if you have a pool or bbq space, otherwise boring. Do not commute for more than a couple miles.
4   rigidmember   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 7, 4:55pm   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

To me those listings don't pass the smell test. Either they are very desperate, the place is a total dump or the listing is fake. I've noticed rental listings where someone has pulled photo's from zillow to use in their CL ad and then ask a ridiculous low price. Idea is to scam people to send personal info such as SSN, address, bank account #'s etc and they either steal your identity or scam you out of a deposit fee. In those cities a 2 bdrm apt should go for at least double what they are asking.
5   mell   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 7, 4:58pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

rigidmember says
To me those listings don't pass the smell test. Either they are very desperate, the place is a total dump or the listing is fake. I've noticed rental listings where someone has pulled photo's from zillow to use in their CL ad and then ask a ridiculous low price. Idea is to scam people to send personal info such as SSN, address, bank account #'s etc and they either steal your identity or scam you out of a deposit fee. In those cities a 2 bdrm apt should go for at least double what they are asking.


Yeah could be too. For SF in-laws start around $1800. Not surers about Sunnyvale, could also be a bad part or scam.
6   SunnyvaleCA   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 7, 5:00pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

The Sunnyvale house is tiny and old, but, given the craziness that is silicon valley, should sell as-is for north of $1M (just look at the recently sold neighbors and the Zestimates for them — and remember that prices of houses have gone up massively in the last 2 years.)

Could any owner possibly be stupid enough to rent it out for only $14K per year? That'll take 70 years to recoup the cost of the house! I'm guessing there's some mistake at the asked-for price and you won't be able to rent it for less than $2k/month. For that you'll have a painful commute to San Mateo, a 74 year old tiny house, and a scenic view of Home Depot across a 4-lane (not very busy) road. You read that right: 74 year old house — that neighborhood went up in 1944. Knob and tube all the way! Bring a respirator for the asbestos.

At the intersection of Kiefer and Fair Oaks is a steep bridge (going over train tracks south of Home Depot). That's likely to generate quite a bit of noise due to CalTrain. Unfortunately, you'll get all the noise of the trains (and cars accelerating up that hill from a stop at the intersection light) but you won't get any benefit: the CalTrain stations aren't really in walking distance.

Someone might wish to buy for $1M in the hopes that the neighborhood will gentrify over time, but you're a renter and won't likely be there in 10 years.

What time (and how) do you plan on commuting? I certainly wouldn't want to drive from there to San Mateo between the hours of 7:30 AM and 9:30 AM or in the reverse direction between 4:00 PM and 7:00 PM.

Do you have kids that you might want to send to the local schools?
7   SunnyvaleCA   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 7, 5:06pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

mell says
These are likely in law type dwellings.Those are typically cheaper. Good climate in the south bay if you have a pool or bbq space, otherwise boring. Do not commute for more than a couple miles.


From the satellite view, the Sunnyvale property has no inlaw unit and that type of 75 year old house really was built at 900 square feet. That's the whole thing! Complete with 1-horse garage!

I 2nd your warning not to commute for more than a couple of miles. It's one thing if you own a home and then switch jobs and so are forced into a longer commute, but given that this move is for a specific job, I'd try to get within a few miles. Hopefully you could walk or have safe biking roads. Can one legally use a push-scooter on sidewalks?
8   socal2   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 7, 5:26pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Don't do it! I can't imagine going back to the Bay Area after getting to San Diego county.
9   MrMagic   ignore (11)   2018 Aug 7, 6:21pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

NuttBoxer says
I know many of you live, or have lived in the Bay Area, thoughts?


Get the hell out of that state... STAT...
10   Patrick   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 7, 6:26pm   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

rigidmember says
To me those listings don't pass the smell test. Either they are very desperate, the place is a total dump or the listing is fake. I've noticed rental listings where someone has pulled photo's from zillow to use in their CL ad and then ask a ridiculous low price. Idea is to scam people to send personal info such as SSN, address, bank account #'s etc and they either steal your identity or scam you out of a deposit fee. In those cities a 2 bdrm apt should go for at least double what they are asking.


I agree, those prices are too low to be real. Something is very wrong.

One scam is that the "owner" lists for a very low rent, then claims to be out of the country and asks for first, last, and security checks by mail. You'll never see the money again.

San Mateo itself is a pretty nice place, very few homeless.

I still like the Bay Area, but I don't love it anymore. I'm tired of the (literal) shit and masses of homeless, and the high income and sales taxes in California, not to mention the high rents and house prices. On the flip side, there are a lot of jobs, the salaries are good, and there is a huge and thriving tech community. It's Hollywood for programmers, but then Hollywood itself has shit on the sidewalks.
11   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 7, 9:18pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

NuttBoxer says
What time (and how) do you plan on commuting?


Not sure what the hours would be there. At my current office I don't have to be in before 10am. I could drive, but would prefer almost any other way.

SunnyvaleCA says
Do you have kids that you might want to send to the local schools?


One daughter in 4th grade. I think she will be in a private school before the end of the year regardless if we move or not. I feel like if I continue to send her to public school I'm telling her it's ok to waste your time, the natural conclusion of which is a dead end job where you do the same thing. Public schools are fucked.
12   P N Dr Lo R   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 8:15am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

SunnyvaleCA says
1944
Hubba hubba doodle doodle
13   socal2   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 9:08am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

NuttBoxer says
One daughter in 4th grade. I think she will be in a private school before the end of the year regardless if we move or not. I feel like if I continue to send her to public school I'm telling her it's ok to waste your time, the natural conclusion of which is a dead end job where you do the same thing. Public schools are fucked.


I think you said you live in the South Bay area. Have you looked at San Marcos? I live in south Carlsbad, but our school district got re-zoned to San Marcos and most of their elementary schools are top notch now. The H.S. just got a brand new renovation and ranks very high as well.

I've been up in North County for nearly 8 years now and it is a good mix of high earners and working class people. Not crazy uber rich like the Bay Area and certainly none of the poverty and dysfunction you see up there too. Both Vista and San Marcos have a reasonable cost of living.
14   rigidmember   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 10:15am   ↑ like (5)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Patrick says
I still like the Bay Area, but I don't love it anymore. I'm tired of the (literal) shit and masses of homeless, and the high income and sales taxes in California, not to mention the high rents and house prices. On the flip side, there are a lot of jobs, the salaries are good, and there is a huge and thriving tech community. It's Hollywood for programmers, but then Hollywood itself has shit on the sidewalks.


I'm going to agree with you here Patrick as being here in the Bay Area is wearing on me big lately. Here's my list of things that irritate me about this place:

1) Too many people that going anywhere on the weekend and not leaving to get there at 6am becomes a total shit show.

2) Homeless everywhere and they're aggressive.

3) Everyone has their hand out and is always crying poor. School board wants a new parcel tax, RM3 for increased bridge tolls, Bart will inevitably raise fares to match bridge tolls as well. Preschool raising rates, daycare raising rates. Everything keeps going up up up

4) Commuting sucks. Bart is a horrible commute full of homeless, panhandlers, mentally ill and criminals. Bart PD is supposed to ride trains as part of their daily shift but apparently they don't have enough staff to do that (see #3 above) so the only time you see Bart PD is when they're actively looking for someone. There is absolutely no deterrent to committing crime on Bart. The climate is so bad that patrons attempting to enforce the rules on their own ( ie no eating, drinking, smoking on the trains) are immediately shamed and skewered on social media and news networks by apologists. It really feels like a lawless free for all on Bart. Try to drive and expect to spend a quarter of your waking hours in your car getting to and from work.

5) People here are generally stuck up pieces of shit and very elitist like it's some special achievement in life to live here in the BA.

6) Everything revolves around tech, everything. Go to a gathering and people talking about startups, apps etc. It's like every social gathering becomes a venue to try to market themselves or their ideas. Try to talk about normal guy things and the beta male crowd completely shuts down.

7) Political climate is appalling....Sanctuary cities? Come on, that's absurd to put the welfare of illegal immigrants above the tax paying residents.

8) House prices are ridiculous. Markets are full of high paying tech folks, trust fund babies, deep pockets of mom and dad, wealthy foreigners and investors. Don't fall into one of those groups? Good luck getting a house for your family that isn't a 2 hr plus commute from a job center.

Anyone care to add to the list? I'm sure we can come up with a million reasons why the BA is getting old.
15   socal2   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 10:52am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I certainly agree with item 5 and 6. When I first moved to San Jose from the Midwest in 1995 I really struggled to meet anyone who was not in the tech business and not bragging about their stock options and six figure salary (over 20 years ago!).

I met more life long friends and "normal" people in San Diego in the first month I moved here than I did in the Bay Area over 3 years.
16   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 8, 11:17am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

socal2 says
I think you said you live in the South Bay area. Have you looked at San Marcos?


I'm actually a little burnt out on cities, considering a move out east, if north, maybe Ramona. Guessing the schools out there would be better as well, just for the simple fact that the student to teacher ratio is lower. The only reason Bay Area crossed my mind is a possible fast track to my career.
17   socal2   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 11:31am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

NuttBoxer says
I'm actually a little burnt out on cities, considering a move out east, if north, maybe Ramona. Guessing the schools out there would be better as well, just for the simple fact that the student to teacher ratio is lower. The only reason Bay Area crossed my mind is a possible fast track to my career.


There is alot of open space in North County. Tons of hiking trails, hills, mountains and miles and miles of uncrowded beaches. Great people and community too. I feel so claustrophobic when I drive around San Diego now.

I lived in PB for 13 years and had no idea how much better North County was for families and schools. Moving up here was the best decision we ever made.
18   HEYYOU   ignore (18)   2018 Aug 8, 11:33am   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

The grass is greener on the other side of the fence.
No one ever says, "It has to be mowed too."

Do the positives of a potential change outweigh the worst negatives?
Take time & research as you are doing now.
Good luck with your final decision.
........
5 years ago I decided to buy this dump after going around the neighborhood on Saturdays & Sundays introducing myself,telling them I was interested in this shack & talking to people to get any info on the property. It's amazing what one can find out from people after giving them a compliment & talking about them & something they have. "You really have a nice garden." "You wife has some beautiful flowers."
"I really like that homemade trailer." "Like the color of your truck." Simply things work.
People love to talk! One can definitely find out who the neighborhood assholes are. Also found some great neighbors.
19   Ceffer   ignore (1)   2018 Aug 8, 11:58am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

All you have to do is get used to living in an exorbitantly expensive sardine can/fish bowl, live in a horribly overpriced, cramped tenement, get used to spending a good bit of your life in stop-go traffic choking on fumes, standing in lines for anything resembling entertainment or amenities, learning to make reservations months if not a year ahead of time, competing for postage stamp sizes of space, all with hurried, snarling, unsmiling tech automatons everywhere and yeah, the snobs who think that getting a toe hold made them superior to the blighted masses who live elsewhere. Population compression psychosis, third world-ization with an aftertaste of homeless, being rich while living like a beggar (or at best ordinary middle class), being laser scrutinized by surly neighbors who won't say hello but will cite you for unwashed cars and imperfect facades, liberal echo chambers that make you think the world has gone truly and irreversibly mad, etc. etc.

It's bliss on earth. The weather is nice when there isn't yellow smoke hanging in the air from what's left of burnable tinder all summer.
20   SunnyvaleCA   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 2:01pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Patrick says
One scam is that the "owner" lists for a very low rent, then claims to be out of the country and asks for first, last, and security checks by mail. You'll never see the money again.


I heard of a scam were the existing renter, nearing his last days of the lease and about to leave the country, pretends to be the owner of the place and takes your deposit and first month's rent. When you show up next month to move in, the previous renter has moved back to their home country and you're not only out the money but also have no place to live.
21   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 8, 5:41pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I did some checking, and seems like 2/1 in San Mateo can be had for $2,800 - $3,000. Saw a couple that would put me within a few miles of the office. Would need almost a 15% pay increase to keep my cost of living the same though. But maybe I can cut into that a bit by only having one car, and biking, or even walking to work(my lifelong dream).
22   Patrick   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 5:45pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Yes, those rents seem about right to me for a San Mateo 2/1.
23   mell   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 8, 6:12pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

rigidmember says
Patrick says
I still like the Bay Area, but I don't love it anymore. I'm tired of the (literal) shit and masses of homeless, and the high income and sales taxes in California, not to mention the high rents and house prices. On the flip side, there are a lot of jobs, the salaries are good, and there is a huge and thriving tech community. It's Hollywood for programmers, but then Hollywood itself has shit on the sidewalks.


I'm going to agree with you here Patrick as being here in the Bay Area is wearing on me big lately. Here's my list of things that irritate me about this place:

1) Too many people that going anywhere on the weekend and not leaving to get there at 6am becomes a total shit show.

2) Homeless everywhere and they're aggressive.

3) Everyone has their hand out and is always crying poor. School board wants a new parcel tax, RM3 for increased bridge tolls, Bart will...


Love the natural beauty of the region, that you can live right by the beach or golden gate park and run, hike, surf, Tahoe is not to far to ski/snowboard. It was best though during the financial crisis when the city was empty and you had never to wait in line or for a parking spot. SF hoods are actually really pretty on a misty morning when nobody else is there. If you're young and single it's a decent area to work hard and play hard for a while. Once you're getting older or a looking to settle it quickly loses its appeal. Plus in recent years many areas have become run down (despite re-inflating the tech bubble), way too many homeless and assholes, too much dirt/trash and totally defunct leftoid corrupt governments that fleece the haves, pocket 80% of the money in filthily luscious pensions and give 20% back to the crazies and homeless. Definitely on the decline Still a 3 out of 5 if you're in the age range of 20-40, as you can't take many stars away for the pretty amazing nature. 10 years of a Giuliani-style reign and cleanup program could make the SF bay area great again and boost its rating back to 4 or 5 out of 5.
24   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 8, 9:32pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

This idea is sounding less crazy than I thought at first. But I got to second round interview with a firm "will not relocate" stance, so I'll keep that card in my back pocket for now, and hope I don't have to play it.
25   alpo   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 10:51pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Bay Area is a good area to move. People here are friendly, but they don't have time and act more desperate than most areas. The higher the real-estate prices and rent, the more desperate people act here. I mean if you are living in an apartment making well into six figure income and seeing most of that disappear into rent which keeps on going up and up then anyone would be desperate. Don't get me wrong there are people here who couldn't give a shit about stock market or housing prices - like my neighbors who pay less than $5000 in prop taxes every year and have no mortgage. However my other neighbors recently bought their house for $2M and pay approx. $10K in mortgage per month + $20K in prop taxes every year - they are always running around and never home.

If you want a more relaxed area go to Seattle or Portland. Seattle has a big tech scene these days as well, people seem to be more friendly (as they have more time), restaurants won't push you in and out (rent is cheaper so they don't have to circulate customers in and out of restaurant quickly). Seattle is what bay area used to be 10 to 15 years back.

If you are ambitious type then by all means come to Bay Area and join the tech scene and IPO rat race here and be ready to become part of the desperate crowd who are making well into six figures but seeing most of that disappear into rent or mortgage :-).

If I had to move back again to Bay Area I would strongly consider Seattle since there is a big tech scene there as well now. The two factors that I would consider are how crowded the area is and my potential to buy a decent house in a decent place :-)
26   BayArea   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 8, 11:26pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

If you are moving to San Mateo with the expectation that those ads you posted are real/norm, you will be in for a rude awakening.

On the Peninsula you can expect to pay $2800-3000 for a 2bedroom apartment or $3500-4000 for a 2 bedroom house (with lots of competiton).

Cost of living is very high on the Peninsula.

I think people who come here are often shocked at how much money they can make here yet how much less buying power they have compared to where they came from.
27   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 9, 10:45am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

BayArea says
On the Peninsula you can expect to pay $2800-3000 for a 2bedroom apartment


If you see above, that lines up with what I found after more searching.

The main reason I'm considering a move to my corporate office is growth seems much faster when you see the executives and CEO every day. A guy who started in basically the same position as me, with a different team, at almost the same time I started, is now a manager.

There was an older guy in our office about a year back doing some consulting, and he made a point to say that as we worked in a remote office, everyone should make an attempt to travel to corporate office at least once, and when we are there, make sure to introduce ourselves to management. It rang true then, and now more than ever.
28   komputodo   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 9, 2:44pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

NuttBoxer says
But maybe I can cut into that a bit by only having one car, and biking, or even walking to work(my lifelong dream).


Sure...Who wouldn't want to bike or walk the streets in friendly San Mateo?
29   komputodo   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 9, 2:50pm   ↑ like (2)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

BayArea says
I think people who come here are often shocked at how much money they can make here yet how much less buying power they have compared to where they came from.


But you're forgetting the added plus of the smell of KUNG PAO or TANDOORI chicken wafting thru the apt. complex every evening.
30   SunnyvaleCA   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 9, 4:03pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

I think that if you are arriving in the Bay Area now your plan should be to live frugally, save as much money as possible, and flee the area as you retire in 10 years. If you are bringing an entire family, saving money is going to be very difficult.

I believe that renting a larger house (4 or 5 bedrooms) and having 2 or 3 borders to share the bill might be more economical. I rented a large house with 4 college buddies shortly after we all graduated. That house was in Foster City and probably rents for "only" $5k a month. With 4 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms, that house was plenty big.
31   Evan F.   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 9, 4:10pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Patrick says
It's Hollywood for programmers, but then Hollywood itself has shit on the sidewalks


You haven't spent much time in Hollywood lately. It's not quite the shithole it was 15 years ago. Everything in LA has gone upscale.. granted there are still some gritty spots but they're fading, fast.
32   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 10, 11:28am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

komputodo says
Sure...Who wouldn't want to bike or walk the streets in friendly San Mateo?


I thought the bad areas where on the other side of the bay(Oakland)?
33   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 10, 11:31am   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

SunnyvaleCA says
I think that if you are arriving in the Bay Area now your plan should be to live frugally, save as much money as possible, and flee the area as you retire in 10 years. If you are bringing an entire family, saving money is going to be very difficult.


I was thinking to stick around just long enough to get a big promotion, then use that as leverage to get same position back in SD, or maybe southern Silicon Forest(Eugene). Five years tops. Would be bringing just my younger daughter to start, not sure if the older one would join us as she is starting school down here in a couple weeks.
34   MisterLefty   ignore (0)   2018 Aug 10, 4:16pm   ↑ like (1)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

Consider that the California future calls for increased taxes to prop up pension funds and to pay for an increasingly devastating series of fires and other natural disasters. Also, you should probably learn Spanish.
35   NuttBoxer   ignore (2)   2018 Aug 13, 1:20pm   ↑ like (0)   ↓ dislike (0)   quote   flag        

MisterLefty says
Also, you should probably learn Spanish.




Pues, asi que mi esposa es Tijuanese, y vivimos en Chula Juana(Vista), ese no ser problema.




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