Mothering Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
<p>It might happen to us next year.</p>
<p>Am trying to figure out if it's a completely insane idea.</p>
<p>I would like to live not too far from DH's work (so less than 10 miles from Santa Clara centre, I guess), ideally in either a scruffy intellectual academic area (where I might meet people like me) or an aspirational heavily Latino area (like where I partly grew up), or somewhere urbane and full of liberal ideas (like where I'd live in San Diego, if I hadn't emigrated).</p>
<p>I desperately want to live walking distance to DC primary school, which of course I'd want to be a decent sort of school, (I don't want to Homeschool, they'd be going into 1st, 5th and 7th grade, plus DC4 will be nearly 4yo so could need a preschool not too far away).</p>
<p>I don't know if I can find areas like I'd want :).</p>
<p>Or if any of us could cope with the culture shock.</p>
<p>I presume DH would need to earn at least $100k/annum to support us all (renting, of course, too hard to plan for me to get a job).  I'm guessing we're looking at rents of $2.8-$4k/month for a 4 bed house in a half-decent area.</p>
<p>Plus we are keen cyclists so if it's impossible to live somewhere artyfarty full of gay or multicultural and interesting intellectual people, we might want to live tucked up into countryside where we can go cycling on nice country lanes or off road routes.</p>
<p>Any suggestions of areas where we might like to live?  I sort of know Santa Cruz, but that's a long drive every day to Santa Clara, if I remember rightly.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Any feedback on my mad plans and thoughts, what do I need to know about living in Silicon Valley?  I grew up in San Diego, btw, so am not completely ignorant about American life, but I've lived so long away I am a cultural outsider too, now.</p>
<p>TIA</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
<p>OH dear, that hopeless is it?  :)</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,236 Posts
<br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Cavy</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1285268/moving-to-silicon-valley-after-living-20-years-in-the-uk#post_16113438"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a><br><br><p>It might happen to us next year.</p>
<p>Am trying to figure out if it's a completely insane idea.</p>
<p>I would like to live not too far from DH's work (so less than 10 miles from Santa Clara centre, I guess), ideally in either a scruffy intellectual academic area (where I might meet people like me) or an aspirational heavily Latino area (like where I partly grew up), or somewhere urbane and full of liberal ideas (like where I'd live in San Diego, if I hadn't emigrated).</p>
<p> </p>
<p><span style="color:rgb(0,0,205);">We don't really have areas like that in the Bay Area. At least, none that I've found. Most people here are pretty well educated, due to the need for a high income to pay rent. There also really isn't a 'center' to Santa Clara. The only two cities that have an interesting center, and safe one, are Mountain View and Palo Alto. Santa Clara is very close to bordering cities of Sunnyvale, Campbell, Mountain View and somewhat downtown San Jose. </span></p>
<p> </p>
<p>I desperately want to live walking distance to DC primary school, which of course I'd want to be a decent sort of school, (I don't want to Homeschool, they'd be going into 1st, 5th and 7th grade, plus DC4 will be nearly 4yo so could need a preschool not too far away).</p>
<p>I don't know if I can find areas like I'd want :).</p>
<p> </p>
<p><span style="color:rgb(0,0,205);">You won't find a place within walking distance for all those ages. Here, there is elementary school (kindergarten to 5/6th grade) and then Junior High (6/7th Grade & 8th Grade). If you are within walking distance to one, you are generally not within walking distance to another.</span></p>
<p> </p>
<p>Or if any of us could cope with the culture shock.</p>
<p> </p>
<p> </p>
<p>I presume DH would need to earn at least $100k/annum to support us all (renting, of course, too hard to plan for me to get a job).  I'm guessing we're looking at rents of $2.8-$4k/month for a 4 bed house in a half-decent area.</p>
<p> </p>
<p><span style="color:rgb(0,0,205);">Yep, especially in the areas you are looking at.</span></p>
<p> </p>
<p>Plus we are keen cyclists so if it's impossible to live somewhere artyfarty full of gay or multicultural and interesting intellectual people, we might want to live tucked up into countryside where we can go cycling on nice country lanes or off road routes.</p>
<p> </p>
<p><span style="color:rgb(0,0,205);">The entire Bay Area is multicultural. So not sure what you mean by that? Even living here, in East San Jose (not a great place, will be moving soon), my neighbor to my right is Vietnamese, my neighbor to my left is Mexican, etc etc. When I lived in Santa Clara, I had Indian, Middle Eastern, Japanese, etc neighbors.</span></p>
<p> </p>
<p><span style="color:rgb(0,0,205);">There are also plenty of 'off road" routes throughout this part of the Bay Area. If you want a real countryside experience you'd be pretty far from Santa Clara. Also, if you are desperate, it's a 30-45 min drive to get somewhere 'countryside' during non-peak traffic hours.</span></p>
<p> </p>
<p>Any suggestions of areas where we might like to live?  I sort of know Santa Cruz, but that's a long drive every day to Santa Clara, if I remember rightly.</p>
<p> </p>
<p><span style="color:rgb(0,0,205);">Yea, that would be insane. A long, long drive on not so great roads.</span></p>
<p> </p>
<p>Any feedback on my mad plans and thoughts, what do I need to know about living in Silicon Valley?  I grew up in San Diego, btw, so am not completely ignorant about American life, but I've lived so long away I am a cultural outsider too, now.</p>
<p>TIA</p>
</div>
</div>
<p> </p>
<p>People in Silicon Valley definitely live a much faster pace of life. You do need a car to really go and do things here, as the public transportation is not great. In terms of things to do, culturally, there are tons of opportunities. There is an Obon festival every year, a Greek festival, etc. Authentic ethnic restaurants are everywhere, from all parts of the world. Ethnicities do seem to 'cluster' in certain areas of the bay area, but overall, it's still nicely mixed.</p>
<p><br>
Nightlife isn't that great. Things close down by about 9pm. However, if you really need that, San Francisco isn't too far away.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Honestly, I would recommend renting an apartment for a few months until you get a better feel of the area and then pick a place to settle into. That way you can see what you like/don't like about an area.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Ami</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
<p>Good, am glad to hear about the multi-culturalism.  I feel fidgety about the monoculture DC are growing up in now.  Is Los Gatos very expensive (am trying to find some numbers for rents).  We might only for for a year, and I don't want to have to hike DCaround from one school to another, I want to get it right from the beginning.  DH would go out for a few months on his own first, so he could sort of find us a house in the right sort of area, if I could direct him to start with.  (House to rent, I meant, sorry keyboard is going totally wonky and can't type this right at all).</p>
<p>I was only thinking of walking distance to an elementary school, I realised that the 7th grader would have to get on a bus</p>
<p> </p>
<p> </p>
<p> </p>
<p> </p>
<p>.</p>
<p>Thanks for the reply!</p>
<p> </p>
<p> </p>
<p> </p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
<p>I'm feeling anxious about the faster pace of life thing, that's one of the things I least miss about life in CA.</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,736 Posts
If I were you, I'd see if someone in your dh's company could direct him to a good local realtor--someone who could help you figure out the actual cost of living for what you need, tell you the good school districts, etc. Give the realtor a wish list and see what s/he recommends. We have former neighbors who relocated to that area last year--they're in Sunnyvale now. Fairly particular about schools, so I imagine things are OK there. But only one child in public school (kindergarten).<br><br>
I've only spent a little time in that area--a few days at a time in San Francisco and about 6 weeks one summer in Saratoga--so take this as you will. My impression of the area is that while it can be very fast-paced (lots of traffic, for example), it's not that hard to find quiet pockets. <a class="bbcode_url" href="http://www.djerassi.org/" target="_blank">Djerassi</a>, for example, is not that far from Saratoga/Sunnyvale, and it feels really remote, reached by narrow twisty back roads.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
886 Posts
<p>Honestly the rent range you listed with 100K salary sounds high.  You may want to take a closer look at what take-home pay is going to be after taxes and healthcare.  I know in UK healthcare is covered, but here I know some people who pay close to $1,000/month even for partial company covered healthcare.  Just my $0.02.  Best of luck!!!</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
444 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
<p>Hi -- thanks for feedback.</p>
<p>My real health cost nightmare is orthodontics - DS1 is only 11yo and is already lined up for loads of teeth to pull and braces.  So I'm guessing we're looking to spend a fortune on his teeth IF we move to California.</p>
<p>I didn't realise that realtors could help you find a place to rent?  I thought they only helped with home buyers and sellers.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>DH will be out there (if it happens at all) for 2-4 months before I would move out, so he could probably ask around and find the right area.  But it would help to give him good starting places.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Thanks again.</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,736 Posts
<div class="quote-container" data-huddler-embed="/community/forum/thread/1285268/moving-to-silicon-valley-after-living-20-years-in-the-uk#post_16145935" data-huddler-embed-placeholder="false"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>Cavy</strong> <a href="/community/forum/thread/1285268/moving-to-silicon-valley-after-living-20-years-in-the-uk#post_16145935"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif"></a><br><br><p>Hi -- thanks for feedback.</p>
<p>My real health cost nightmare is orthodontics - DS1 is only 11yo and is already lined up for loads of teeth to pull and braces.  So I'm guessing we're looking to spend a fortune on his teeth IF we move to California.</p>
<p>I didn't realise that realtors could help you find a place to rent?  I thought they only helped with home buyers and sellers.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>DH will be out there (if it happens at all) for 2-4 months before I would move out, so he could probably ask around and find the right area.  But it would help to give him good starting places.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Thanks again.</p>
</div>
</div>
<br>
Yeah, I wouldn't have thought that about realtors either. BUT, my experience has been--after working with the realtor dh used when buying a condo 20 odd years ago, then selling that and buying a house, then selling that and buying another house (I was an interested bystander on the move from the condo and a full participant in this most recent move <img alt="winky.gif" class="bbcode_smiley" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/winky.gif">: )--that a really good one has her finger on the pulse of the entire market. Part of it is that we'd actually considered not selling our house, but renting it out and buying another. She had all kinds of information at her fingertips for that. Could also have potentially acted as a property manager. If you look at that sequence of events, it's easy to see that some realtors really are looking at the long term picture--we'd use her again in a heartbeat, if we needed to move from here, because while we know that she's making a commission on the sales, it has never felt as if she has anything but our best interests in mind.<br><br>
Forgive me if I'm stating the obvious, but for dental, you'd be looking at whether your dh's company has a dental plan at all (many don't) and what the cost of that is compared to the total cost of orthodontics.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
<p>Hello all, I hope it's OK for me to jump in here as I subscribed today so that I could answer your post specifically.  I'm a Realtor, a Brit and I live in Silicon Valley so I think I can give you some good insight.   I'm originally from Scotland, lived in England for many years and moved here in the mid-90s to work in the Valley.  I became a realtor when I left the corporate life to start my family (DD Eilidh 8,  DD Ishbel 7 and DS Finlay 5).  DH left his corporate job last summer to join me in real estate and bring more balance to his life.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>You asked specifically about Los Gatos and that's the first place that sprang to mind when you described what you were looking for.   You absolutely CAN be within walking distance to all 3 schools in Los Gatos and the neighboring Union school district and there are definitely nice, less costly areas here that are within the school districts.  You'll get more for your money in Union while still having the benefits of living near a great downtown at the base of the Santa Cruz Mountains.   I've lived all over the valley (Palo Alto, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Campbell and now Los Gatos) and I finally feel like I've found my "village".   DH and I bike and walk everywhere with our kids (groceries, coffee shop, restaurant, parks, schools all within walking distance).   BTW our 8 year old is on the orthodontic track so I can give you some insight there too.   She's finishing up her first round of mouth expansion and will no doubt have more braces in her teenage years.  So far we've spent $1750!   I wish my parents had done the same for me LOL.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>There are definitely fewer rentals in Los Gatos and the surrounding area so you need to have your ears open to find the good ones.   Although this area in general is VERY cosmopolitan and Los Gatos definitely has that feel about it, Los Gatos itself is pretty homogenous, predominantly white with a much smaller percentage of minorities than in neighboring Cupertino or San Jose for example.   The areas in Silicon Valley are diverse as are the school districts.   I'd be happy to send you more info and help you figure out what areas you'd consider.  </p>
<p> </p>
<p>Hope this helps, let me know if you have any other specific questions.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Gail</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
<p>Other areas you might want to consider Los Altos, Willow Glen, Campbell.  Los Altos is obviously not the cheap option but Campbell and Willow Glen are more affordable and have some decent schools depending on where you live.</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
<p>Hello Gail,</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Have just read your post ( from last year) - would you be kind enough to send me details of your company as we are moving to Los Gatos from London in July and need to find somewhere to live, ideally with 4 or more bedrooms.</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Many thanks,</p>
<p> </p>
<p>Julie.</p>
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5 Posts
<p>Hi Julie,</p>
<p> </p>
<p>I think my husband replied to your email so I'll follow up with you there.  </p>
<p> </p>
<p>-Gail</p>
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top