Author Topic: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?  (Read 3625 times)

bananagram

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 9
My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« on: January 25, 2015, 10:46:27 PM »
Hello! I am a 25 year old who recently landed my first full-time job in Seattle (yay!). I am also starting the beginnings of my mustache and am doing my best to develop good spending habits now, to help myself later. Here is my dilemma, which I would love some input on:

I currently commute by bus to my office that is ~2 miles away. In six months it is being relocated to be ~8 miles away from my home. This will render a public-transit commute impossible from my current living situation - it would at up to 3+ hours a day. Something needs to give. These are what I see as my possible options:

1. Buy a car. I don't have one, and would rather avoid it, if possible.
2. Buy a scooter/moped. I'll have to commute up hills, through traffic and in the rain. This is cheaper, but is it enough cheaper than a car to be worth it? I'm not sure.
3. Commute by bike. I have a bike, but 80 miles a week of commuting seems daunting, plus the aforementioned issues in item 2, biking in traffic being the biggest deterrent.
4. Move. My lease will be up close to when my office moves. However if I move close enough to work to have a reasonable bus ride (~30-45 minutes each way), rent is significantly more expensive (at least $200/mo). If I move very close to work I will be in a cheap, but undesirable area and far enough from all of my friends that I will have the same problem as commuting to work, but for my personal life.

Here are my expenses for anyone wondering:

Take home per month after taxes and retirement savings:$2,300
Housing/utilities/Internet: $875
All other expenses: ~$900 (working my way down to ~$625)
Excess/month: $525-800
I also have a few thousand dollars in savings that could be put to a car/moped/reflective vest if necessary.

So, anyone have any great ideas about the best way to make this decision? I would love any mustache-oriented advice you can throw at me!

innerscorecard

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 590
    • Inner Scorecard - Where financial independence, value investing and life meet
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2015, 10:56:17 PM »
I would move very close to work and then make new friends.

Goldielocks

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 6319
  • Location: BC
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2015, 11:02:10 PM »
Moped / scooter for certain, unless you need to ride on highways.
Electric bike or just bike is another good option, and you save the licensing / insurance costs too.

  Snow is a problem for the Moped, so choose the electric bike option if so.
Look again at walk + Transit  or bike + transit (bikes go on the front of buses here)  This could cut out a lot of time, and eventually you would just bike.

All are easily do-able with 8 miles, hills included.   Get proper gear (clothes and pannier / backpack)
« Last Edit: January 25, 2015, 11:04:33 PM by goldielocks »

bananagram

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 9
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #3 on: January 25, 2015, 11:16:44 PM »
I hadn't even thought of bike + transit for some reason! I will definitely look further into that, and how long it will take.

Eric

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4061
  • Location: On my bike
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #4 on: January 26, 2015, 03:00:20 PM »
Ride your bike.  If you start riding and stick with it, in 3 months you'll wonder why you ever thought twice about it in the first place.  You'll be crushing those hills in no time.

Catbert

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1698
  • Location: Southern California
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #5 on: January 26, 2015, 03:29:05 PM »
are you valuable enough to the company that this would be the time to bring up working at home for a couple of days a week?  Or asking for a raise to offset the additional rent?  These are only options if either your valuable to the company or they already recognize that many will face problems with the move.

bigalsmith101

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 520
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Lake Stevens, WA
  • Yes, that's really my face.
    • No Jobs, No Responsibilities, No Better Time then Now
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #6 on: January 26, 2015, 04:16:13 PM »
Seattle is a GREAT place for year round commuting on a Scooter. You won't even need a large displacement scooter for that area. You can routinely fine 50cc scooters (no motorcycle license required, just regular Drivers License) for in great condition for less than $1k. They are insanely cheap to insure, and at 75+mpg you'll be loving it.

I would move super close to work to limit the commute and use the scooter for transit to friends places/groceries etc.

I am biased as both my wife and I scooter EVERYwhere and LOVE it.

MsPeacock

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1541
  • Location: High COL
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #7 on: January 26, 2015, 04:42:01 PM »
Curious - what would a 8 mile commute take 3 hours? I am unfamiliar w/ Seattle - so just wondering why so long for a relatively short distance.  And maybe some combination of bike/scooter when the weather is cooperative and some other means (carpool?) when the weather is bad.

bananagram

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 9
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2015, 03:09:33 PM »
MsPeacock - It would add up to a little over three hours/day, so 1.5 hours each way which i find excessive. It would take so long because I'd have to walk nearly a mile when getting to and from the bus, and take multiple busses to get there -transfers add quite a bit of time. Not to mention whatever mode I choose I'll be fighting through downtown rush-hour traffic.

Mary W - I've only been with the company a few months so far, and I don't think telecommuting is an option for me. A wonderful idea for the future though!

Scooter is sounding better and better to me if I can't make the bike commute work.

seattlecyclone

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4844
  • Age: 34
  • Location: Seattle, WA
Re: My Office Is Moving... What's My Best Option?
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2015, 03:32:56 PM »
I don't have enough of a death wish to bike through downtown Seattle at rush hour. My hats off to those who are willing to do it, but it's not something I would pick. Biking part of the trip instead of walking or waiting for a transfer sounds like a great idea though. Moving closer to the office (or closer to a bus that goes past the office) is a good medium-term goal if your new commute doesn't end up working.