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Northern California

Home Mortgages and Home Buying Northern California

  • Avatar SValleyMD 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 475
    Joined: 05/12/2016

    If EM I think you could pull it off no problem

    My biggest concern would be commuting as others alluded to as the places you will likely want to live can be a fair distance away from where u work, but most EM are only working 10-14 shifts a month with some random and weekend start times, so it’s not like you’re grinding away at the 7-8 am commute 5 days a week

    Try and keep the house as reasonable as possible for the area and I’m sure you’ll be fine.

    #238139 Reply
    Liked by MDaware, SLC OB
    Avatar G 
    Participant
    Status: Physician, Small Business Owner
    Posts: 1905
    Joined: 01/08/2016

    Or pay for the fancy seats on Southwest Airlines to/from Oakland whenever a dose of grandparenting is required and retire 20 years earlier….

    #238148 Reply
    Avatar Panscan 
    Participant
    Status: Resident
    Posts: 1152
    Joined: 03/18/2017

    How often are you actually going to see this family you’re going to be 30 min from? People always want to live near family and then see each other like 4 times a year. Pointless

    #238152 Reply
    fatlittlepig fatlittlepig 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 1313
    Joined: 01/26/2017

    It’s no secret how the WCI feels about NorCal. Financially I know it is not the smartest decision. However it’s possible my young family of 3 moves there as my wife is from the east bay and wants to be closer to family. Any N. California docs who don’t think it’s as bad as most make it out to seem or is it really that poor of a decision to move there?

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    Totally inadequate information to make any sort of statement. What job, how big of house, are you frugal in other than housing expenses. Blah blah blah

    #238153 Reply
    Liked by snowcanyon, Tim
    Avatar Gamma Knives 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 173
    Joined: 06/25/2017

    I don’t think I would call it a “really poor decision.” Just go into it with eyes open. Taxes will be higher than many other places. Depending on the exact area you should plan on more modest housing than you would be able to afford elsewhere. If you control costs you can still achieve financial independence in a reasonable timeframe.

    If the location is going to be where you are happy than the associated costs are likely worth it but that is something you and your spouse must decide.

    #238167 Reply
    Liked by MDaware, Tim
    fatlittlepig fatlittlepig 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
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    Joined: 01/26/2017

    California is overrated. It’s a big country there are lots of nicer places to live with more reasonable housing costs.

    #238168 Reply
    Liked by Ghetto, HikingDO
    Avatar StarTrekDoc 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2150
    Joined: 01/15/2017

    California is overrated. It’s a big country there are lots of nicer places to live with more reasonable housing costs.

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    Don’t you live here too?  People say what they want.  I love San Diego.  Happy to pay my sunshine tax.  YOLO.

    #238186 Reply
    Liked by mapplebum, Kamban
    Avatar Kamban 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2584
    Joined: 08/01/2016
    I’m EM. 3 years out of residency. Did locums for a bit after residency so don’t have any loans. Haven’t applied in the area yet but am guessing income would be around 325-350k. Wife is currently stay at home mom. Would be planning to have more kids and would be planning to buy a house.

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    How much in your heart are you wanting to live there. i get it that your wife wants to be close to family but how about you. Are you willing to put up with the traffic, high housing prices and other high expenses so that you can live close to her family. If both of you are not into it fully, pick another more reasonable COL place where you can have a happier lifestyle.

    Before you go there, get job offers and see houses and see if the former’s pay is decent and latter’s cost  is not outrageous and you can tolerate the commute. And have money for living expenses and have some money left to save for the future. If not, nix the idea.

    #238194 Reply
    Avatar loeffy 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 67
    Joined: 08/28/2016

    Not everything is about money and retirement.  My spouse and I had to make a similar decision.  See what jobs you can get, salary, housing, COL and decide if it’s worth it.  It is for us, living near family, even if it may delay FI a few years.

    #238211 Reply
    Liked by MDaware
    Avatar danesgod 
    Participant
    Status: Spouse
    Posts: 77
    Joined: 09/12/2017

    At 300k+ you’ll likely be fine. It might take you longer to get to FI, you might own fewer toys than peers in other states, maybe you’ll have a budget longer. But ultimately, 300k good money and you can make it work. Lots of people have retired on less in the area. But remember, 300k is not wealthy around here, with all high paying tech jobs and IPOs. You’ll need to adjust your expectations on house (location/size) or retirement age. If you buy here, you’ll be house-rich/cash-poor for a whole lot longer than elsewhere.

    I love it here. My wife loves her job. We bought a home this year that we intend to stay in for as long as we can. If she decides she doesn’t like her job, we leave (maybe at a loss, but the rest of the country is so cheap relatively, it wouldn’t take long to make up for it). FWIW, we also live in one of the more expensive areas in the Bay area (Silicon Valley).

    Those are my Bay Area musings.

    #238338 Reply
    Liked by MDaware
    Lordosis Lordosis 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2222
    Joined: 02/11/2019

    You can have anything you want but you cannot have everything you want.

    If you understand you are paying for location and that will cost you in other areas of your life then you will be fine.  Too many people I know do not understand that living in NYC or wherever does not give them a pass on math.  If you spend 50% of your salary on housing that is less to spend on other things.

    Not only that but you would probably make similar or more in a less expensive area.

     

    Either way the fact that you are contemplating it bodes well for you.

    Good luck.

    “Never let your sense of morals prevent you from doing what is right.”

    #238352 Reply
    Liked by MDaware
    legobikes legobikes 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 301
    Joined: 05/25/2017

    Dude. Given the likelihood of a relatively long travel time to your relatives (unless you live REALLY close), and also taking into account actual visiting frequency, it might be worthwhile for you to live in actual NorCal instead of the Bay Area. Pluses would be major reductions in commute, stress, and COL, and easy access to real nature. Minuses would be ‘cultural’ if you consider many different ethnicities participating in the frantic economic machine ‘culture’.

    Sacramento and Chico are good options within 3 hours of the Bay Area.

    #238355 Reply
    Avatar chrisCD 
    Participant
    Status: Other Professional
    Posts: 106
    Joined: 01/14/2016

    Grew up in Danville, but it has been a long-time.  In a very modest neighborhood, a fairly small house sold for over $1MM, but it was right across from the local elementary school.  We currently live near Vacaville and do like being withing 2.5 hours of Tahoe or so.  Not a Dr.  Income is in the $125K to $175K range.  Houses in our area are $425K+ and Vacaville is about +$50K.  Davis is a great town if you like lots of college kids here and there.  Davis is about +$100K or so. Traffic is getting worse.  If you wanted to visit Danville, you would probably want to leave earlier in the morning, but it is only about an hour drive when traffic is light.

    For Medical, you have Sutter, UCD, Kaiser, North Bay.

    We put our kids into a private school through Junior high.  Davis’ public schools are are pretty good.

    San Ramon is the next town west of Danville.  Use to be a little less expensive, not sure now.  That was the town where my wife grew up.

    cd :O)

    cd :O) -- Chris Duncan -- "God grant me the strength of eagles' wings, the faith and courage to fly to new heights, and the wisdom to rely on His Spirit to carry me there."

    #238366 Reply
    Zzyzx Zzyzx 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 203
    Joined: 09/24/2018

    I’m EM. 3 years out of residency. Did locums for a bit after residency so don’t have any loans. Haven’t applied in the area yet but am guessing income would be around 325-350k. Wife is currently stay at home mom. Would be planning to have more kids and would be planning to buy a house.

    Click to expand…

    do you have any personal ties to CA?  its a big financial commitment if you aren’t into it.  You are likely overestimating potential income, physician salaries are lower in desirable parts of CA and the physician job market is saturated.  Unless you’re generating passive income, receiving family assistance or inheritance you should expect:

    1. spouse will need to work

    2. can’t afford to have more kids

    3.  live in debt & on a strict budget for a longer than anticipated time

    4.  rent rather than own

    5. retire late

    It’s psychosomatic. You need a lobotomy. I’ll get a saw.

    #238384 Reply
    Liked by snowcanyon, Kamban
    Avatar StarTrekDoc 
    Participant
    Status: Physician
    Posts: 2150
    Joined: 01/15/2017

    Now just to make it clear OP.   Regardless of the expense of Bay Area —  as an EM, you’ll be just fine.  FIRE at 35 probably not in the cards.  There are plenty of docs living here who do retire by 60s without issue.    We were dual income primary care for 10 years then since my primary care income alone and have done well enough for FI by 45.

    So the question remains if family is important for you, then Danvile central it is.    Find a job, then venn diagram the job and family and go from there.

    #238401 Reply
    Liked by MDaware

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