Author Topic: Milwaukee Mustachians - Advice on where to live (possible relocation)  (Read 1536 times)

Trudie

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My husband is considering applying for a position in Milwaukee which would be a significant move up for him.  These are early days and he hasn't submitted his application yet, but we're wondering about COL, great places to live, and the ins and outs of the place.  We lived near Madison about 15 years ago for about 4 years and spent some time in Milwaukee, so we're a little familiar.

We're probably suburbia people.  The job would be in the University Hill area.  We have no kids, so schools aren't a big consideration.  We like places with a solid community feel and business district/community center. 

To stay on track with our FIRE goals we'd like to spend about $350-$375K on housing... don't know if that's reasonable.

As I said, these are very early days.  Just trying to get some feedback about the place.

snakenbacon

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Hi there!

I live and work just north of Milwaukee (Germantown, WI). Many of my coworkers live in Wauwatosa and speak well of it, its suburban life and its a short drive to University Hill.

Ins
+ Entertainment is cheap. Baseball, hockey, and concerts are considerably cheaper than Chicago.
+ MKE airport is cheap with tons of destinations. I had my pick of the litter of departure and arrival dates to use my United points.
+ Taxes and cost of living are on the inexpensive end for a big city. I keep up on job opportunities outside our area, and many are less appealing due to their higher COL / taxes.
+ Many opportunities to give your time in a nearby community and have a huge positive impact.
+ Lakes and charming little towns are minutes away.
+ Outdoor recreation is aplenty, an outdoorsman (or woman) would be right at home with the hiking trails, hunting, and fishing.

Outs
- Very racially segregated city, so don't expect much of a melting pot.
- Wrong neighborhoods have high crime.
- Booze is a big part of Milwaukee culture. Every festival will have innumerable beer tents. Could be positive or negative depending on your outlook.
- Winters can be cold and windy, while summers can be hot and humid.

All that being said, MKE is high on our list of places to retire once we get to that age. Our biggest concern is the housing cost would require us to work longer (i.e. paying $200k for a house down here vs. $100k up in Oshkosh), which probably isn't a huge deal for someone in your housing price range.

Best of luck!

Cassie

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I lived in Milwaukee and loved it. It is a big city with a small town feel. People are much more friendly then in Chicago. Since I left over 20 years ago for a job I can't speak to housing, etc.

Beaker

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Posting mostly to follow.

One thing to look out for: property taxes in the Milwaukee area are high compared to many other places, and I believe vary considerably based on what town you're in.

Nate R

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Posting mostly to follow.

One thing to look out for: property taxes in the Milwaukee area are high compared to many other places, and I believe vary considerably based on what town you're in.

This is definitely a good point.

I live in the city of Milwaukee, property taxes are relatively high per $K of value. My house is assessed at about 145K, and taxes were $4300 last year.  They're not as high in some of the suburbs, but just know what you're getting into there if/when you look. Wauwatosa is a good suggestion, but I know prices have gotten pushed up a lot there in the last couple years.

There are some up and coming neighborhoods within the city if you're willing to live within the limits thereof......Great community feel in some of those areas.

Snakebacon's pros/cons are fair, I'd say.