Poll

Where should we live?

Boulder, CO
4 (7.3%)
Las Vegas, NV
1 (1.8%)
Phoenix, AZ
2 (3.6%)
Portland, OR
6 (10.9%)
Raleigh, NC
5 (9.1%)
San Diego, CA
2 (3.6%)
Seattle, WA
12 (21.8%)
Stay in NYC Area
5 (9.1%)
Other (leave a comment!)
11 (20%)
Austin, TX
5 (9.1%)
Houston, TX
2 (3.6%)

Total Members Voted: 54

Author Topic: Best city for software developer with growing family  (Read 14958 times)

expectopatronum

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #50 on: July 09, 2015, 11:11:29 PM »
It's not on your list and you've likely never considered it, but I can recommend Houston, specifically the Clear Lake area near NASA's Johnson Space Center.

You've got:
* Relatively good diversity and tolerance thanks to the scientific/engineering/international community here for JSC.  I say "Relatively" because we're talking Texas, not Brooklyn.  It is NOT Brooklyn-diverse here.

Actually, Houston has been named the most ethnically diverse city in the US. Like anywhere, it has its pockets where certain ethnicity are concentrated, but I just want to dispel the myth that Houston = Texas in terms of diversity.

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #51 on: July 10, 2015, 05:06:26 AM »
You need Sydney. Seriously.

1. Very race tolerant.
2. Excellent free public schools.
3. No winter. Just none.
4. Summer is much milder then Texas.
5. 200K+ is very achievable for finance software developers.

We hadn't considered leaving the county, but we are certainly open to it! I have two concerns though. First, I remember reading once that Sydney had a higher COL then even NYC. Second, what is it like getting residency? I know for the US it is a huge uncertain pain even with advanced degrees and employer sponsorship.

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #52 on: July 10, 2015, 05:07:29 AM »
It's not on your list and you've likely never considered it, but I can recommend Houston, specifically the Clear Lake area near NASA's Johnson Space Center.

You've got:
* Relatively good diversity and tolerance thanks to the scientific/engineering/international community here for JSC.  I say "Relatively" because we're talking Texas, not Brooklyn.  It is NOT Brooklyn-diverse here.

Actually, Houston has been named the most ethnically diverse city in the US. Like anywhere, it has its pockets where certain ethnicity are concentrated, but I just want to dispel the myth that Houston = Texas in terms of diversity.

Much love for Houston! I've added it to the poll.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #53 on: July 10, 2015, 05:32:26 AM »
I think you'd have to get pretty rural to have interracial couples and kids be unusual. I feel like sometimes people in NYC think that only New York has X (where X is tolerance, ethnic food, walkable neighborhoods, whatever) and that simply isn't true. I live at the eastern edge of the Rust Belt (and we're living here in Allentown...) and a big chunk of the kids coming to my door at Halloween had parents with them of different races.

I'm surprised Philadelphia isn't on your list, though I personally prefer Texas to the Northeast. It wouldn't be much of a cultural or lifestyle change from New York, but the cost of living is much lower if you do it right. You can take a fairly quick train ride to New York to see friends and family.

As for politics...there's a difference between conservative and racist. I've see more confederate flags around me and in western New York state where I went to college than I did growing up in Dallas. I will say that Dallas's local politics had a lot more racial "charge" to them than Houston's did, but that's anecdotal. My sister is raising mixed-race kids in Dallas and hasn't had any problems that I've heard of. (Once she lost her phone at work and when she found it again somebody said "You have pictures of Chinese kids on your phone." "Those are my kids.")

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #54 on: July 10, 2015, 06:56:34 AM »
I think you'd have to get pretty rural to have interracial couples and kids be unusual. I feel like sometimes people in NYC think that only New York has X (where X is tolerance, ethnic food, walkable neighborhoods, whatever) and that simply isn't true. I live at the eastern edge of the Rust Belt (and we're living here in Allentown...) and a big chunk of the kids coming to my door at Halloween had parents with them of different races.

I suspected this was the case. Maybe not 40 years ago but now the rest of the country is more tolerant? Lifelong New Yorkers like us tend to take a pessimistic view of "flyover states". It's our own form of prejudice I guess! We're trying to work through it, but it's very culturally ingrained here.

I'm surprised Philadelphia isn't on your list, though I personally prefer Texas to the Northeast. It wouldn't be much of a cultural or lifestyle change from New York, but the cost of living is much lower if you do it right. You can take a fairly quick train ride to New York to see friends and family.

I went to school in Philly so I'm pretty familiar with the area. The Main Line is really quite nice and there are plently of financial firms in the area (including Vanguard!). It certainly hits a lot of the things we're looking for except weather.

TheOldestYoungMan

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #55 on: July 10, 2015, 07:18:32 AM »
When I lived in Maryland I was honestly surprised so many people stayed on the east coast.  It's just as hot and humid as Texas, winters are worse, you still get tropical storms and hurricanes, and the people are just nasty, rude, mean.

After being there awhile I realized that what I perceived as nasty, rude, mean was really just a different set of manners.  In Texas, the polite thing to do is hold the door open.  In New York City, the polite thing to do is pretend you don't see anybody else.

In Texas if you need to have a little breakdown, an on-your-knees screaming fit, you can just go to your house and do that.  In New York City, you'll disturb your neighbors doing that, so you need to go find a nice public street to have your episode.  Filled with strangers who will politely ignore you.

But overall, there is far more in common between New York and any other large city in the states than there is different.  We are all Americans.

What you see on TV or read online is a narrative of the societal differences by region that are largely cosmetic, and certainly exaggerated by

All that said,  Happy wife = happy life.  I can understand not being comfortable somewhere.  China felt extremely hostile to me, although I doubt "china" had any feelings towards me one way or another.

And yea, lets all move to Australia!

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #56 on: July 10, 2015, 07:33:50 AM »
After being there awhile I realized that what I perceived as nasty, rude, mean was really just a different set of manners.  In Texas, the polite thing to do is hold the door open.  In New York City, the polite thing to do is pretend you don't see anybody else.

In Texas if you need to have a little breakdown, an on-your-knees screaming fit, you can just go to your house and do that.  In New York City, you'll disturb your neighbors doing that, so you need to go find a nice public street to have your episode.  Filled with strangers who will politely ignore you.

This is why I laugh when people say New Yorkers are "rude". No, we just have a different set of social norms built on the fact that we have a lot more density than the rest of the country.

All that said,  Happy wife = happy life.  I can understand not being comfortable somewhere.  China felt extremely hostile to me, although I doubt "china" had any feelings towards me one way or another.

My wife felt very uncomfortable in Thailand because we got stared at All. The. Time. We saw like zero black people when we were there and the locals clearly had no idea what to think of us. It wasn't hostility, just curiosity, but it was still wearing. I can't imagine the long-term psychic drain of living someplace like that.

Cathy

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #57 on: July 10, 2015, 09:52:26 AM »
I think you might want to test the job market in NYC before leaving, because you may be able to earn money which would further contract your time to retirement and perhaps make you reconsider leaving. I don't think $180,000 in total compensation at age 30 is particularly high for a software engineer working in finance, if you are good. Maybe you recently did a career change. If you have 5-10 years of experience, I think you could be earning considerably more than that.

I don't recommend relying on glassdoor. For whatever reason, it seems to report figures that are below the market rates. We might speculate that people with higher levels of pay are less likely to report it on glassdoor. It might also be that the market levels go up significantly over time (much higher than inflation), but glassdoor gives you an average that includes historical data, and thus it is averaged down below current market rates. Or maybe employers flood glassdoor with low-compensation data to improve their negotiating position. I don't know, but I certainly wouldn't assume that glassdoor is accurate. At higher levels of compensation, less of compensation (as a percentage) will be base salary, and people are also generally less reliable about reporting stuff other than base salary on glassdoor.

Maybe I'm wrong and this is the best that is available in your field. But I think doing a bit of testing of the job market might prove very worthwhile.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 09:55:06 AM by Cathy »

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #58 on: July 10, 2015, 10:07:43 AM »
I think you might want to test the job market in NYC before leaving, because you may be able to earn money which would further contract your time to retirement and perhaps make you reconsider leaving. I don't think $180,000 in total compensation at age 30 is particularly high for a software engineer working in finance, if you are good. Maybe you recently did a career change. If you have 5-10 years of experience, I think you could be earning considerably more than that.

I don't recommend relying on glassdoor. For whatever reason, it seems to report figures that are below the market rates. We might speculate that people with higher levels of pay are less likely to report it on glassdoor. It might also be that the market levels go up significantly over time (much higher than inflation), but glassdoor gives you an average that includes historical data, and thus it is averaged down below current market rates. Or maybe employers flood glassdoor with low-compensation data to improve their negotiating position. I don't know, but I certainly wouldn't assume that glassdoor is accurate. At higher levels of compensation, less of compensation (as a percentage) will be base salary, and people are also generally less reliable about reporting stuff other than base salary on glassdoor.

Maybe I'm wrong and this is the best that is available in your field. But I think doing a bit of testing of the job market might prove very worthwhile.

You nailed in. I don't like to toot my own horn but I am probably in the top 10-20% of developers I've seen in the industry. I was career-dumb when I started out and stayed with my first employer (also a bulge bracket bank) for 7 years, moving twice internally. Loyalty was not rewarded, I was told each time that a move, even with more responsibility, did not trigger a comp review. Total bullshit.

I finally got fed up with the lack of comp growth and worked with a recruiter recommended by a colleague of mine who confirmed I was underpaid. So I jumped ship last year to another ibank. I'm behind the curve in terms of compensation based on my 8 years of experience but hoping to catch up over the next few years. I am planning on hopping again to another bank or hedge fund in 2 years if I stay in NYC which I hope will bring me to where I would have been had I not been a stupid youngin'.
« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 10:09:18 AM by metaphysik »

bacchi

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #59 on: July 10, 2015, 10:47:23 AM »
Austin (and Houston) has a really hot housing market right now.*

http://www.forbes.com/sites/erincarlyle/2015/06/08/americas-most-overvalued-and-undervalued-housing-markets-in-2015/

That said, you can make $150k as an architect or $120k as a senior. That'll get you a central city house but just on the lower end and most of the schools aren't considered excellent. It'll get a 2000 sq ft house in a suburb but the commute will be excruciating.

Yes, traffic sucks and it's fucking hot for 5 months of the year.


*The metric they use may be a bit flawed. Austin wasn't hit as badly by the GFC and prices were stagnant until recently. The "gross metro product" from 2009-2015 would be more relevant.

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #60 on: July 10, 2015, 12:09:37 PM »
Some people voted for Las Vegas, Portland, and Raleigh in the poll but I haven't heard anything about them. Any Mustachians in those cities care to chime in? :-)

AZDude

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #61 on: July 10, 2015, 12:40:07 PM »
Have not lived in Las Vegas, but my brother has and I have visited a dozen times. The area was hit hardest during the recession of pretty much any place in the world(may be slight exaggeration). It is much like Phoenix in that it has cheap housing but the job market is not as good(allegedly, again this is 2nd hand knowledge). Its still hot, but not *as* hot as Phoenix(think 100F instead of 108F), and its more liberal than Arizona. The downside is that any time I have been the city just feels sleazy, even away from the strip. Nevada does not have good schools overall, but I don't know specifically what they are like. No state income tax in Nevada, although that could change with the casino industry tanking a little bit right now.

Never been to Portland or Raleigh. Been to Charlotte, NC. Nice place, decent weather. Can't say much beyond that.


metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #62 on: July 10, 2015, 12:45:05 PM »
Have not lived in Las Vegas, but my brother has and I have visited a dozen times. The area was hit hardest during the recession of pretty much any place in the world(may be slight exaggeration). It is much like Phoenix in that it has cheap housing but the job market is not as good(allegedly, again this is 2nd hand knowledge). Its still hot, but not *as* hot as Phoenix(think 100F instead of 108F), and its more liberal than Arizona. The downside is that any time I have been the city just feels sleazy, even away from the strip. Nevada does not have good schools overall, but I don't know specifically what they are like. No state income tax in Nevada, although that could change with the casino industry tanking a little bit right now.

Thanks, this is really helpful! We've only been to the Strip in Las Vegas, not the "real" city. If it's like Phoenix but with worse schools, economy, and only slightly better taxes, then I'm comfortable scratching it from the list. It mostly made it on due to the no income taxes!

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #63 on: July 10, 2015, 12:50:42 PM »
If I could bring a job to any no-state-income-tax city I've been to, it would probably be Corpus Christi, TX. But I think it would be tough to find a job there out of nothing since it isn't that big.

Mother Fussbudget

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #64 on: July 10, 2015, 12:55:44 PM »
There are several of us here in the Seattle area who love the area - the moderate temperatures (this year is an outlier), the nearby natural beauty, parks, etc and overall quality of life, and no state  income tax.  I bought a fixer home in an area less than a mile from Microsoft campus (Bellevue, WA), and worked there as a full-timer for over 10 years.  Options for Microsoft, Amazon, Expedia, Google, Starbucks, AT&T Wireless, T-Mobile, CostCo, etc with large software operations in this area.

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #65 on: July 10, 2015, 01:04:16 PM »
There are several of us here in the Seattle area who love the area - the moderate temperatures (this year is an outlier), the nearby natural beauty, parks, etc and overall quality of life, and no state  income tax.  I bought a fixer home in an area less than a mile from Microsoft campus (Bellevue, WA), and worked there as a full-timer for over 10 years.  Options for Microsoft, Amazon, Expedia, Google, Starbucks, AT&T Wireless, T-Mobile, CostCo, etc with large software operations in this area.

Seattle (the most popular poll choice!) seems to be the one city we're looking at that has high enough salaries to lure us away from NYC during our working years. In all the rest, the lower COL does not appear to be enough to offset the far lower salaries from an optimizing time-to-FIRE perspective. Once our accumulation phase is over it's a completely different situation!

meandmyfamily

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #66 on: July 10, 2015, 02:12:14 PM »
Have you thought of Tucson, AZ?  My husband is a software engineer here.  Plenty of jobs!  Some of our children are trans racial but we are white.  I do wish there was a bit more diversity.  COL is great!  Salaries are good.  The weather is fantastic!  We have a pool for the summers but it is a little cooler here than PHX.  The airport is 20 minutes from our house and a quick flight takes you to LAX. 
« Last Edit: July 10, 2015, 02:15:07 PM by meandmyfamily »

ender

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #67 on: July 10, 2015, 02:15:22 PM »
How important is proximity to family?

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #68 on: July 10, 2015, 02:21:56 PM »
How important is proximity to family?

Proximity to family is not too important, but I imagine it may be as our parents get older (they are in their 50s). If we are FIREd then there is of course nothing stopping us for coming back for months at a time... :-)

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #69 on: July 10, 2015, 02:23:45 PM »
Have you thought of Tucson, AZ?  My husband is a software engineer here.  Plenty of jobs!  Some of our children are trans racial but we are white.  I do wish there was a bit more diversity.  COL is great!  Salaries are good.  The weather is fantastic!  We have a pool for the summers but it is a little cooler here than PHX.  The airport is 20 minutes from our house and a quick flight takes you to LAX.

Thanks, we haven't looked at Tucson, but the Mrs is very interested in AZ in general. Would you happen to know what a highly-skilled software engineer with 8 years' experience might expect in salary?

meandmyfamily

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #70 on: July 10, 2015, 02:33:53 PM »
My husband has been in the field 15 years and he says around $90,000 to $100,000 depending on what you can do.

expectopatronum

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #71 on: July 10, 2015, 02:52:37 PM »
Seattle (the most popular poll choice!) seems to be the one city we're looking at that has high enough salaries to lure us away from NYC during our working years. In all the rest, the lower COL does not appear to be enough to offset the far lower salaries from an optimizing time-to-FIRE perspective. Once our accumulation phase is over it's a completely different situation!

That's interesting. I didn't know the COL/salary balance was so favorable in Seattle, but it makes sense for software. We have a friend who lives there and works as some type of engineer for Amazon in Seattle. Another is in finance at Microsoft. Seems like a great place to live!

Oh, and FYI, I don't know that people who voted "other" can re-vote even after poll options are added.

Erica/NWEdible

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #72 on: July 10, 2015, 02:57:34 PM »
There are several of us here in the Seattle area who love the area - the moderate temperatures (this year is an outlier), the nearby natural beauty, parks, etc and overall quality of life, and no state  income tax.  I bought a fixer home in an area less than a mile from Microsoft campus (Bellevue, WA), and worked there as a full-timer for over 10 years.  Options for Microsoft, Amazon, Expedia, Google, Starbucks, AT&T Wireless, T-Mobile, CostCo, etc with large software operations in this area.

Seattle (the most popular poll choice!) seems to be the one city we're looking at that has high enough salaries to lure us away from NYC during our working years. In all the rest, the lower COL does not appear to be enough to offset the far lower salaries from an optimizing time-to-FIRE perspective. Once our accumulation phase is over it's a completely different situation!

Well, it's settled then. You should come visit us and see if you fall in love with the area. :)

man_is_obsolete

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #73 on: July 10, 2015, 04:00:44 PM »
I'm a web developer in Vegas, been here for 5 years. It's working well for me and my peers.

Low cost of living. No state tax.
Wages are good (for developers, anyway). All my dev peers make $50-100k, very low bonuses). Median is probably in the 70s. I know a couple over $100k.

High diversity in most areas.

Schools: It's popular for local complainers to hate on the public schools. I have 2 kids in elementary school (west side of town) and we like their school. The private schools I'm familiar with are ~$10k/year. There are also charter schools.

Weather: hot summer (110 highs), mild winter, perfect fall and spring. I wear shorts and sandals every single day of the year.

Lots: 1/8 - 1/4 acre are what I see.
Home size: most people I know have over 2000 sq ft. No basements.

Food scene: it's Vegas.
Ease of international travel: it's Vegas.

Ask if you want to know more.

letired

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #74 on: July 10, 2015, 05:09:25 PM »
As a longer-term (and white) Austin resident, this is a Really White town with a long history of segregation. Back when the 'east side' of town was the 'bad' area, it was partially because it was the Black area (also, poor as hell). While I don't think you and your wife would get that much shit for being an interracial couple, I'd see if you can dig up some people who might actually have some perspective on that one, given that even I can see how insanely white the town is (esp the tech community).

All that said, I love living in Austin, and it does have a decent tech job market. What's another HCOL person moving and driving up the housing costs!

urbanista

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #75 on: July 10, 2015, 05:19:14 PM »
You need Sydney. Seriously.

1. Very race tolerant.
2. Excellent free public schools.
3. No winter. Just none.
4. Summer is much milder then Texas.
5. 200K+ is very achievable for finance software developers.

We hadn't considered leaving the county, but we are certainly open to it! I have two concerns though. First, I remember reading once that Sydney had a higher COL then even NYC. Second, what is it like getting residency? I know for the US it is a huge uncertain pain even with advanced degrees and employer sponsorship.

Permanent residence is easy for software developers. There are 2 ways: independent and employer-sponsored. Independent may take 2 years but it is very much like a green card straight away. Employer-sponsored working visa is very fast (1-2 months processing) and after you start working, permanent residence to follow in 2 years almost surely. So the best way is to find the employer first.

Sydney does have high COL but it balances out by the public health system.

zoltani

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #76 on: July 10, 2015, 05:29:54 PM »
Seattle definitely needs more software developers to help it towards its march to becoming another san francisco. It is quickly becoming overpriced yuppieville.


metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #77 on: July 11, 2015, 09:27:07 AM »
Seattle definitely needs more software developers to help it towards its march to becoming another san francisco. It is quickly becoming overpriced yuppieville.

Sounds great, I loved San Francisco when we visited! :-P

capital

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #78 on: July 11, 2015, 02:31:44 PM »
Seattle definitely needs more software developers to help it towards its march to becoming another san francisco. It is quickly becoming overpriced yuppieville.
Seattle will hopefully not be as stupid as the San Francisco Bay Area, and do a funny thing called 'build more housing when more people move there'.
http://www.seattlepi.com/local/article/Less-room-for-single-family-homes-in-Seattle-6373119.php

capital

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #79 on: July 11, 2015, 02:54:33 PM »
Oh, and my personal strategy for your situation would be
1. Start scoping out NYC tech job outside of finance— the skills would likely be more transferrable, and the salary might not be quite as high, but would be in the same ballpark-- my NYC tech salary isn't quite as high as yours last year, but I'm also younger
2. Once you've built experience outside of finance, you'll be in a position to switch to remote work for your employer, or find a full-time remote job (my friend who lives in Seattle is a full-time remote employee for an NYC tech company)— likewise at a lesser-but-still-excellent salary. You would probably also be in better shape to hunt for non-finance tech jobs in other cities.
3. Potentially scope out parts of NYC that are boring but have good schools, or parts of the area with a long commute that you could work part-time remote, and come in 1 or 2 days a week. (Remember that the last 2 winters were some of the worst in years— we'll likely see regression to the mean, and milder winters again.)

San Diego probably isn't a great place for y'all, by the way— I lived there my first year out of college, and its tech scene was pretty much limited to Qualcomm and a few defense contractors. It's a diverse city, but there are very few black residents, as well, so the vibe may be similar to Seattle in that way.

mozar

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #80 on: July 11, 2015, 08:21:17 PM »
I voted for NYC. Your child is a newborn.

« Last Edit: May 10, 2018, 01:02:07 PM by mozar »

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #81 on: July 11, 2015, 10:40:37 PM »
Oh, and my personal strategy for your situation would be
1. Start scoping out NYC tech job outside of finance— the skills would likely be more transferrable, and the salary might not be quite as high, but would be in the same ballpark-- my NYC tech salary isn't quite as high as yours last year, but I'm also younger
2. Once you've built experience outside of finance, you'll be in a position to switch to remote work for your employer, or find a full-time remote job (my friend who lives in Seattle is a full-time remote employee for an NYC tech company)— likewise at a lesser-but-still-excellent salary. You would probably also be in better shape to hunt for non-finance tech jobs in other cities.
3. Potentially scope out parts of NYC that are boring but have good schools, or parts of the area with a long commute that you could work part-time remote, and come in 1 or 2 days a week. (Remember that the last 2 winters were some of the worst in years— we'll likely see regression to the mean, and milder winters again.)

San Diego probably isn't a great place for y'all, by the way— I lived there my first year out of college, and its tech scene was pretty much limited to Qualcomm and a few defense contractors. It's a diverse city, but there are very few black residents, as well, so the vibe may be similar to Seattle in that way.

Thanks, these are great ideas. We're going to see if we can find any "diamonds in the rough" in the NYC area. Staying has a lot of benefits, at least until FIRE.

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #82 on: July 11, 2015, 10:43:10 PM »
Also how does your wife wear her hair? On the coasts it's not going to be that big of a deal, but if it's not relaxed she might get some flak from other black women in the middle of the country. Natural hair is becoming more acceptable but still unusual.

She gets it relaxed regularly. I never even considered this point though, thank you!

foggnm

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #83 on: July 12, 2015, 07:52:30 AM »
Narrow your list down to 5, then go on a road trip and check them all out. Coming from NY, you are likely to not like the 5 months of 100 degree heat in Phoenix or the 'culture' of the south. The cities you mentioned are all vastly different population wise, I'd suggest you figure out what size a city you want to live. Raleigh is a fraction of Houston or Seattle.

Trifele

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #84 on: July 12, 2015, 09:15:54 AM »
Hi Metaphysik
I am late to this thread but just read through all the comments.  You said you are ruling out Minneapolis due to the winters.   Winters in the upper midwest are colder than NYC, but they are DRIER.  This has a huge impact on how you feel.  Years ago I moved from the Minneapolis area to New York, and I felt so cold that first winter there.  It is a raw, damp cold that seeps right into you.  Much worse than "dry" cold, IMO.  If you can handle NYC winters I think you can probably totally handle anything Minneapolis dishes out. Just my two cents. Minneapolis is cool.  Good luck!  Sounds like you are getting lots of great advice.
T
 
 
« Last Edit: August 11, 2017, 01:42:23 PM by Trifele »

seattlecyclone

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #85 on: July 12, 2015, 10:00:59 AM »
Madison is a great town, but I'm not sure it meets the OP's criteria. Besides the cold winters, the most likely places you would find a software development job are the university, the state government, and Epic Systems. I wouldn't expect any of them to pay enough to accelerate the OP's FIRE.

Trifele

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #86 on: July 12, 2015, 11:04:22 AM »
Madison is a great town, but I'm not sure it meets the OP's criteria. Besides the cold winters, the most likely places you would find a software development job are the university, the state government, and Epic Systems. I wouldn't expect any of them to pay enough to accelerate the OP's FIRE.

Even considering the lower cost of living?

seattlecyclone

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #87 on: July 12, 2015, 11:21:42 AM »
I was just a student in Madison so I don't know their prevailing wage rates as well as others might, but the OP said he saves $76k after taxes and expenses in NYC. Glassdoor is showing software developers at Epic with 7-9 years of experience average $125k total compensation, so he might be able to maintain the same savings rate at that salary, but it seems tight.

dadof4

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #88 on: July 12, 2015, 11:42:41 AM »
Some people voted for Las Vegas, Portland, and Raleigh in the poll but I haven't heard anything about them. Any Mustachians in those cities care to chime in? :-)
Software developer from Portland OR here (I haven't voted though; In your situation I would probably just keep feeding the Statche in NY for a while longer).

Portland is like a smaller Seattle. Weather is very similar, high tolerance to diversity, good schools in the suburbs.
The Job market is less robust, but if you're good you will find a software job. Houses are much more affordable than Seattle. There is a high state income tax, but no sales tax. Unlike Seattle, we have an NBA team :P

Overall, we had to make an almost identical decision to your own 8 years ago. We were 30, making very good money in Silicon valley with a couple of kids, and wanted a couple more. We wanted to buy a house, and the high cost of real estate in Silicon valley is what drove us away. I don't regret choosing Portland over Seattle (which was also considered).

Tyson

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #89 on: July 12, 2015, 12:45:23 PM »
I grew up in Austin, and now live in Denver.  Trust me, Denver/Boulder are FAR better places to live than Austin.  Except for Seattle, we might just be the most progressive couple of towns outside of the eastern seaboard.  As a bit of a culture snob, I always marveled at what an incredibly vibrant arts scene there is here.  Then my best friend (who is gay) pointed out to me that there is the highest concentration of gay people in the country, outside of SF.  Well alrighty then, that explains it!  Haha.  Anyway we absolutely love living here, you get 4 real seasons, and all of them are pretty mild.  Oh, and we are certainly the fittest population in the state, and our state is one of the fittest in the nation. 

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #90 on: July 12, 2015, 04:26:55 PM »
Narrow your list down to 5, then go on a road trip and check them all out. Coming from NY, you are likely to not like the 5 months of 100 degree heat in Phoenix or the 'culture' of the south. The cities you mentioned are all vastly different population wise, I'd suggest you figure out what size a city you want to live. Raleigh is a fraction of Houston or Seattle.

That's a great idea, we'll probably spend our vacations the next few years visiting these cities. I'm embarrassed to even say both of us have been to more foreign countries than other states of our own country!

metaphysik

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #91 on: July 13, 2015, 10:23:10 AM »
I just wanted to say how thankful I am for all the replies we've gotten! The MMM community is really something special, but you all already know that. We have tons of info to sift through now and figure out where to move, I'll try to post an update here when we figure it out...

Mother Fussbudget

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #92 on: July 13, 2015, 09:17:37 PM »
+1 on the summer road trip idea. Travel to prospect cities, and see what's to be seen - and decide whether you like it. Take a week per city if you can - make it an adventure (take just a pocketknife, a rubber band, a paper clip and your wits).  Reach out to MMM'ers in your target cities, and have a cookout at a local park one night while there... or couch surf your way across the U.S. 

bb11

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #93 on: August 13, 2015, 07:27:07 PM »
+1 on the summer road trip idea. Travel to prospect cities, and see what's to be seen - and decide whether you like it. Take a week per city if you can - make it an adventure (take just a pocketknife, a rubber band, a paper clip and your wits).  Reach out to MMM'ers in your target cities, and have a cookout at a local park one night while there... or couch surf your way across the U.S.

+1

I did this last year and saw 17 states as I moved from the Bay Area to NYC. Some of these cities are much different than the image I had in my head. Best to check it out before making any serious plans.

humbleMouse

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #94 on: August 14, 2015, 10:38:16 AM »
I grew up in Austin, and now live in Denver.  Trust me, Denver/Boulder are FAR better places to live than Austin.  Except for Seattle, we might just be the most progressive couple of towns outside of the eastern seaboard.  As a bit of a culture snob, I always marveled at what an incredibly vibrant arts scene there is here.  Then my best friend (who is gay) pointed out to me that there is the highest concentration of gay people in the country, outside of SF.  Well alrighty then, that explains it!  Haha.  Anyway we absolutely love living here, you get 4 real seasons, and all of them are pretty mild.  Oh, and we are certainly the fittest population in the state, and our state is one of the fittest in the nation.

Pretty sure the highest concentration of gay people outside of sf is in minneapolis.

boarder42

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #95 on: August 14, 2015, 01:01:55 PM »
Kcmo. One of the most family friendly cities in the states

bacchi

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #96 on: August 14, 2015, 01:14:38 PM »
Then my best friend (who is gay) pointed out to me that there is the highest concentration of gay people in the country, outside of SF.

Pretty sure the highest concentration of gay people outside of sf is in minneapolis.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LGBT_demographics_of_the_United_States
http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/21/upshot/the-metro-areas-with-the-largest-and-smallest-gay-population.html?_r=0

SFO-SEA-BOS
SFO-PDX-AUS

There's not a lot of difference between #2-10 in the top 10.

RosieTR

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Re: Best city for software developer with growing family
« Reply #97 on: August 14, 2015, 02:32:46 PM »
Denver/Boulder vs Sea-Tac:
More diversity in Seattle, but because there hasn't been much diversity esp in Boulder, most ppl of color are in mixed relationships. Not uncommon to see adopted other-race children with white parents so nobody bats an eye to see a child of color with a white parent.
Weather: sunnier and more variable in CO. Seattle is mostly 50-80F, Boulder is mostly 20-90F, but could be -15 to 105F. A 20F difference from one day to the next (or sometimes in a couple hrs) is not unusual. Very uncommon to have more than 2-3 days in a row of cloudy weather though. Likewise rare for snow to stick around, because the coldest months are on average the driest.
Culture: similar attitudes but CO has less population. Denver has good art/music etc, Boulder a bit less. Probably both less than Seattle.
Housing: if you are OK with a 30-40 min commute, it's likely you can get a house with space around it in Boulder area, with good schools. Seattle may be tougher for this.
Trips to the east coast are easier from Denver (4hr flight vs 6hrs) but international is probably better from Seattle. Salary is probably better in Seattle. Foodie scene is probably a little better in Seattle too.
I think if the land/yard, sunnier weather and outdoor culture are very important, go with Boulder. If the bigger city amenities are, go with Seattle.

As for Phoenix-Lots of guns. Everything is beige-houses, the ground, etc. trees are barely taller than people and have tiny leaves so there is little greenery or shade. Lots of car bling too. I think Phx would be a huge culture shock coming from NYC.