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How do you evaluate whether a cross-country move for a job makes sense??

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I can't talk to anybody in real life about this yet, so I'm hoping I can get some input from some of you folks.

 

I am from CA. DH is from the midwest, but lived in CA for several years. We met there. He still maintains some business contacts out there. We have been living in the northeast for the past 15 years. My entire family has relocated to the east coast. DH's family is also more or less driving distance (parents are a 6 hr drive, his sister is a two hour drive).

 

I am a stay home parent. DH's career has been bumpy. He is in architecture/real estate development/construction project management. The economy has hit his field pretty hard. For the past 2 years, he has had a decent paying job. We are paycheck to paycheck, we don't live extravagantly by any means, but I am able to stay home, the kids take dance lessons, we are slowly paying down consumer debt (accrued while he was out of work). Things are tight...we don't take vacations, we don't eat out except once in a blue moon, we can't afford to replace his 300,000 mile car, we have no savings, and we are renting our home, with no ability to put together money for a down payment. There is no room for advancement at his company. It is an office of three guys and a pretty toxic work environment. But it's a job.

 

One of DH's contacts in CA has been calling DH and wants him to interview for a job at his company in CA. I think he flies out next week. I am in a full blown panic. I've never been one to turn down an opportunity. In some ways we are perfectly primed for something like this...we've only been living in this town for two years, so no deep roots yet (except for family). We don't have to worry about selling the house.

 

But CA is EXPENSIVE. We don't know the details of the salary. I think he'd be making about 20k more than he is now (not sure if that's including benefits or plus benefits - makes a huge difference). They wouldn't be paying moving expenses. As far as I can tell, most of his salary increase would go towards housing. SO we'd move cross country to continue to be paycheck to paycheck.  Except that there is GROWTH in CA, and room for advancement at this other company (or so we understand).

 

Obviously we can't evaluate anything until there is an offer in hand. But can we discuss whether it even makes sense for him to interview????? 

post #2 of 10
Oh yeah he should interview. Depending on where it is and how much he would like to commute it could totally be doable. Plus the advancement. Also even if its the same at leats your husband would no longer be in a toxic work enviornment. Good luck!
post #3 of 10

I don't see any reason not to interview. He may noy get an offer. If he does you will have the answers to more questions. I dunno if I would move across the country to get out of a toxic work env., esp. if it meant I had to leave family. But how likely is he to advance there vs where you are?

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

I guess I'd feel better about it if he was conducting an exhaustive search HERE. But his contacts here aren't much help - his field really has suffered. Most of the people he knows are out of work or have had to shut their doors themselves. I'm overwhelmed by the prospect of prepping for a cross country move, but we've moved a lot, and you do what you have to. I'm worried about the kids. THey are just starting to make friends and feel comfortable. They've moved a lot too. At some point we need to STAY PUT. ANd my parents are in their 80s :( Not saying we should make a decision based on that, but I get choked up just thinking about it. Of course, they still travel extensively and maintain an apt. in CA, so we'd still see them...just not weekly.

post #5 of 10

If your DH interviews and gets the job, could he move out there by himself for a probationary period (3 mos.?) to see if the job will pan out before you move your entire family? I would be nervous about jumping out of the frying pan into the fire - getting out there having spent a lot of money to move & get a new place only to find out that the job isn't what it seems.
 

post #6 of 10

Where in CA? There are parts with more moderate COL. Even high priced areas may have lower rent pockets, if you know where to look.

 

Could you maybe stay in your parents' apartment while you search for a great rental? That would lighten one of the biggest hassles of long distance moving - where to stay while you look, rushing to take a place that is less desirable because you can't stand/afford any more time in a motel. A couple months to find the right neighborhood, etc. would be great. Also, if you had no rent, or very low rent, while you searched, it would give you a chance to recoup some of the moving/travel costs.

 

How old are your kids? Are they the type of people who make friends easily? Moving can be near-traumatic, but it can also be an adventure; depends on so many factors. Just as a generalization, younger kids tend to be more portable. It sounds like the family ties aren't too strong. I made the mistake of moving near my brother and his family, only to learn that the cousins (my kids and his) had little in common, and no interest in spending time together, even though they were the same ages. For us, the proximity to family just didn't really matter.

 

In your position, I would certainly consider moving. It sounds like your present situation isn't meeting the family's needs. And the new one has the potential for a future.

post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

The job is in SF. We could never afford the peninsula...we'd have to look across the bridges. So a long commute, but that's the reality. DH would probably stay in my parent's apt. during the trial period. He could be looking for places during that time.  We'd move during the summer.  I still know people out there...even some that live across the bay, so they will be helpful in figuring out the lay of the land.

 

The youngest is going into K in the fall. I'm not worried about her. But my oldest is going into the 7th grade, and she doesn't make friends easily. She does have a best friend this year, but last year she was kind of free-floating. My middle child is an enigma. She seems very social and gets along and is outgoing, but she doesn't make close friends very easily either. I guess I'm worried about them more than the rest of it.

 

We actually do spend a considerable amt. of time with family. ANd that's the hardest part of it for me. Esp since my parents are in their 80s. We moved away once before, though, and although we didn't see them as much, we def. got more involved with friends and community bcs we couldn't default to spending time with family. We are pretty adaptable, but I am tired of moving :(. Feels like just when we get settled, we up and move. 


Edited by cristina47454 - 2/25/13 at 8:17am
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragana View Post

If your DH interviews and gets the job, could he move out there by himself for a probationary period (3 mos.?) to see if the job will pan out before you move your entire family? I would be nervous about jumping out of the frying pan into the fire - getting out there having spent a lot of money to move & get a new place only to find out that the job isn't what it seems.
 

This is the plan right now. Phew. Glad we are thinking about this the right way. Helps so much to hear other people's input! Make me feel like I'm on track with the thought process.

post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 

It would be so much easier if the salary jump was bigger. I think what makes this so hard is that we are trading location and all the pros AND cons of living in CT for a similar lifestyle in CA, with its own set of pros and cons.

post #10 of 10

My family moved several times when I was growing up. I don't think it is a horrible thing to do to your kids. Sometimes it is what's necessary. 

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