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Looking forward I am thinking about which place is the best to retire in on the West Coast. I live in California now and plan on selling my house and moving to Oregon / Portland area OR just over the border in Washington State.  My question is what are the major differences between the 2 states. Houses are cheaper just over the border in Washington State, but is it worth it in the long run to live the extra 15 to 20 Minutes outside of town, not that I would be hanging out in down town Portland that much, but more or less in the long run Prop tax, income tax and so on, do you get any discounts over a certain age or from certain income types..  So what are the Pro's and Con's to Oregon vs Washington?

 

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well considering they are neighboring states, why don't you just rent for a while in both and see how you like it?

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WA: no income tax
OR: no sales tax

Live in WA, shop in OR.

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fwuser12 said:   WA: no income tax
OR: no sales tax

Live in WA, shop in OR.


You could do that living in Vancouver, WA. I've been to both Seattle and Portland (more times to Portland). About the same weather. If I had to pick a city, I would pick Seattle, but that's just me.

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fwuser12 said:   WA: no income tax
OR: no sales tax

Live in WA, shop in OR.

  
Washington is cracking down nexus/tax avoiders. It's only time before Oregon reciprocates. But until then I agree on the suggestion.

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SummerSoFar said:   
fwuser12 said:   WA: no income tax
OR: no sales tax

Live in WA, shop in OR.

  
Washington is cracking down nexus/tax avoiders. It's only time before Oregon reciprocates. But until then I agree on the suggestion.

  How does WA crack down on people going to OR to buy stuff?

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rufflesinc said:   
SummerSoFar said:   
fwuser12 said:   WA: no income tax
OR: no sales tax

Live in WA, shop in OR.

  
Washington is cracking down nexus/tax avoiders. It's only time before Oregon reciprocates. But until then I agree on the suggestion.

  How does WA crack down on people going to OR to buy stuff?

  
A wall, and OR is going to pay for it!!!

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griffeycom said:   
rufflesinc said:   
SummerSoFar said:   
fwuser12 said:   WA: no income tax
OR: no sales tax

Live in WA, shop in OR.

  
Washington is cracking down nexus/tax avoiders. It's only time before Oregon reciprocates. But until then I agree on the suggestion.

  How does WA crack down on people going to OR to buy stuff?

  
A wall, and OR is going to pay for it!!!

  well played sir

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I live in a suburb of Seattle and have pondered the Vancouver plan for retirement. The only hitch in the plan is that Portland has a high cost of living which, to some extent, negates sales tax savings. I would caution you that it is not just 15 to 20 minutes to Portland from Vancouver. That's only when there isn't any traffic... which is almost never the case outside of the nighttime hours.

You are better off avoiding the area completely and choosing a no-income tax state like Florida with a lower cost of living. It is just a matter of time before Olympia institutes an income tax anyway... this state hasn't elected a Republican governor since 1980.

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I like the wall idea, don't suggest that to our new leader we might have a toll gate on the bridge searching everyone's cars. I lived in Seattle at one time, had enough of that and traffic is Seattle is far worse then Portland area if I remember.  I am not planning on traveling in traffic other then outside of traffic hours, my main concern is income tax and general living cost and I like cold weather places, I have also be to Alaska many times, but that's to far out for me.. Portland aka the new NorCal has a ton of people moving in that area, somewhat like Seattle had years ago, which of course pissed off all the locals and the housing cost went flying up which is also happening in Portland and just over the border, so back to what the better incentives for retiring between Oregon and Wash State..

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Dilbertic said:   my main concern is income tax and general living cost and I like cold weather places, ...
 

  There are many low COL area in WA, particularly east of the cascades. Depending on your political leanings, you may like eastern WA better than the liberal west side of the state.

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If you like cold weather than look at New Hampshire. No income or sales taxes. Be aware some states w/ no income taxes do have taxes on capital gains from investments - so be careful if you have a lot of those.

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I live in Portland.  Even though we have no sales tax, the rest of the taxes are incredibly high to make up for it.  The property taxes are very high and keep increasing because measures keep getting passed for various things.  They also just implemented a significant increase in the gas tax to pay for road maintenance, etc. because they cannot seem to pay for it from our other taxes because they don't properly budget.  You also caanot pump your own gas here which increases costs and is a hassle waiting for someone to pump it at crowded stations.

Housing costs have also skyrocketed and will continue to increase.  Definitely cheaper over the border.  Maybe not as much of an issue for you, depending on where in California you currently live.

Traffic is not nearly as bad as Seattle, but has gotten increasingly worse here over the years I have been living here.  

A lot of great restaurants and tons of food carts so Portland is a great city if you are a foodie.  Not as much opportunity for this just over the border.

Depending on your age and interests, you can audit classes for free at Portland State (last I heard) which is in downtown Portland.  I don't know if this is available at other schools as well.

Vancouver, Washington is just over the bridge from Oregon.  Ridgefield and Camas are also not far.  I personally, wouldn't want to live in any of those cities but it also wouldn't be an advantage for me anyway since I work in Portland so would have to pay Oregon income tax anyway.  From what I have heard, property taxes are lower in Washington.  You can avoid sales tax by making purchases in Oregon, other than big ticket items like cars but I would think at some point they might figure out a way to crack down on this.  There have been discussions about adding tolls, etc. to cross the bridge.  They also need to come up with a lot of money to build a new bridge since the traffic on the existing bridge is ridiculous due to not enough lanes and it is old.

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fwuser12 said:   
Dilbertic said:   my main concern is income tax and general living cost and I like cold weather places, ...
  There are many low COL area in WA, particularly east of the cascades. Depending on your political leanings, you may like eastern WA better than the liberal west side of the state.

  
And, to that point, if the OP is looking at a low cost-of-living town near the Oregon/Washington border, I would suggest looking at Walla Walla.  The wine industry is booming there, it is 10 miles from Oregon, and it has significantly lower cost of living as compared to the metro Portland and Seattle areas.  It's in the middle of nowhere, but that could be viewed as either a pro or a con.

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I think this really depends on what you want to have close by. If you want easy access to Portland, you would need to live in Portland or in OR to avoid crossing the river. If you just want Portland close enough that it is not a long trip, Vancouver and surrounds offer a variety of options, from semi-urban to rural (well, a bit farther out to get to rural).

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I live and work in Vancouver area. I avoid Portland traffic except when necessary or for certain amenities. To me its not worth shopping there even to save on taxes except for larger ticket shopping trips of $200+. Vancouver really provides everything you need (two Costcos, 4 or 5 Walmarts, 3 Wincos, etc). Traffic in Portland is way better than Seattle area and most parts of California though so it's all about your perspective.

People who live in Portland seem to love it there for the atmosphere but it is slightly higher cost of living than Vancouver area but not significantly unless you are looking to buy a house in Beaverton/Hillsboro area west of Portland where housing is a bit more expensive.

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sullim4 said:   I live in a suburb of Seattle and have pondered the Vancouver plan for retirement. The only hitch in the plan is that Portland has a high cost of living which, to some extent, negates sales tax savings. I would caution you that it is not just 15 to 20 minutes to Portland from Vancouver. That's only when there isn't any traffic... which is almost never the case outside of the nighttime hours.

You are better off avoiding the area completely and choosing a no-income tax state like Florida with a lower cost of living. It is just a matter of time before Olympia institutes an income tax anyway... this state hasn't elected a Republican governor since 1980.

  There are a couple of things to consider about Florida besides the lack of a personal income tax (there is a corporate income tax if you have a business).  The sales tax ranges from 6.0% to 7.5%, depending on the county.  There is no special rate for autos, although tax is on net trade value.  Also, if you bring in a car to Florida, you will pay an extra $100.  Property taxes are high, running 2% to 3% of FMV, after homestead deduction of $25,000 on education taxes and $50,000 on all other taxes.  In addition to property taxes, there are levies for Water Management Districts, solid waste disposal and other special tax districts, depending on where you live.  If you build a new house, there will be "impact fees" for roads, utilities, etc.  Home insurance can be expensive, especially near the coast due to frequent hurricanes.  Almost all policies, regardless of where in the state you live, will have at least a 2% hurricane exclusion, but maybe 5% or 10%.  On a $250,000 house, you'll pay the first $5,000 to $25,000 of any hurricane damage, depending on your deductible.
Florida has elected a Republican governor every term since 1999, and coupled with a Republican controlled legislature, is paying the price.  School funding is down with lots of money siphoned off into vouchers for private (religious) schools and charter (for profit) schools.  Most other government services are underfunded with lots of deferred road repairs except for the interstates bringing in the tourists.
Housing prices have rebounded, though still below pre-crash levels.  Prices are higher in more popular areas and beach areas, as well as traffic congestion.

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i've lived in OR & WA my whole life including Seattle and Portland area.

You might also look at Olympia or Spokane or Tri-cities.       Housing costs would be cheaper in general.    All are reasonably size cities with everything that most people need/want.     Olympia has easy enough access to Seattle or Portland.    Spokane or Tri-cities would be a lot cheaper in general.    The weather and polticial views would be much different than Vancouver area though.

As mentioned above the major difference in OR & WA is the taxes.   We have high Income tax in OR and no sales tax and WA has no income tax and high sales tax.    If retiring then living in Vancouver WA would make sense as you'd avoid income tax and have access to the zero sales tax in OR.   But its not as if you can save all that much in sales tax living in WA and shopping in OR.   You're probably not going to want to drive an hour to get most misc items.   Gas isn't usually much different in price.   Rent and mortgage and all your utilities are in WA.   If you buy a car then I'm pretttttty sure that WA will get its money out of you if you want to license it legally.   They've figured out that trick.   And worst case, yes as above, someoen mentioned WA cracking down and the worst example I've seen of that ismany years ago they were arresting people at the ID border who had cartons of cigarettes with ID stamps.   The charge was smuggling.  
Property taxes are similar between states in the ~1% range mostly.  Of cousre it varies depending on what exact city and school district you live in.  

Politics are mostly liberal in Western OR and WA especially so in POrtland and Seattle.    Get out to the suburbs and it gets more moderate.   Washington county is clsoer to 50/50 on some votes versus Portland being overwhelmingly Democrat.    Eastern sides of the states are more conservative and generally vote Republican.  

West OR & WA gets tons of rain.  Depressing constant gray dreary rain.   You've lived in Seattle so you know what its like.  
Eastern OR & WA get little such rain.   But you're more likely to get snow and see colder temperatures.

OR state government and economy are in generally worse states than WA.   OR has a bad pension problem which is costing us mroe and more and isn't going away.  The economy in OR isn't nearly as diverse or strong as WA in general.   Our tax structure in OR is mostly income tax so it really has problems when theres a recession and incomes drop.   
The education system in OR isn't as good as WA either in my opinion.   If you're retiring that may not matter at all.

I'd caution you to go binge watch 5 seasons of that Porltandia documentary.  And then evaluate if you really want to live here.   But Vancouver is NOT portland.    But its awfully nearby and some of the hipster hippy crazy seeps over.

Minimim wages are high and going higher in both states.    Again that may not matter to you directly if you're retiring but it will mean higher costs on stuff like fast food versus areas with low minimums. 

 

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Wow moving to Oregon or Washington from California? You must live in Fresno or Bakersfield. Yea more expensive but quality of life means something.

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You haven't really given us what's most important to you in life and what you're looking for in an area...Hard to advise without that. I've lived in Oregon since 1974. I work in southern California and my family is from California mostly, my wife's family is in Seattle, so I know the west coast pretty well. If somebody wanted to move to Oregon or Washington and wasn't particularly interested in culture, and wasn't enthusiastic about rain I'd advise them to move to Bend.

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bluegreenturtle said:   You haven't really given us what's most important to you in life and what you're looking for in an area...Hard to advise without that. I've lived in Oregon since 1974. I work in southern California and my family is from California mostly, my wife's family is in Seattle, so I know the west coast pretty well. If somebody wanted to move to Oregon or Washington and wasn't particularly interested in culture, and wasn't enthusiastic about rain I'd advise them to move to Bend.

Bend is nice but it is a bit expensive considering.

Tricities or The Dalles would be a lot cheaper.

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There are several annual lists published (in certain magazines) of "best places in America to retire" and things like that -- that kind of article would have financial statistics, lists of amenities, photos, quotes from people who have moved to those places, etc.

Also, there are websites where you can compare/research different US locations, and they also have discussion forums about living in/moving to those places.

I don't know the urls offhand, but many of those sites have been mentioned in past relocation/retiring threads on Fatwallet. And it's easy to look it up in a search engine, just punch in some of the keywords.

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lonestarguy said:   If you like cold weather than look at New Hampshire. No income or sales taxes.
We had a helpful thread on Fatwallet last year about moving to New Hampshire / Vermont / Maine, the pros and cons. 

Maine was even offering people incentives to come visit and see if they'd want to work there and relocate there.  (The free lodging offer probably didn't extend to retirees though.)

I read a newspaper article a couple of weeks ago about the town of Rutland, VT which said that the community is so desperate for people to live there that they are sponsoring a lot of refugee migrants in the hopes that they will settle there and raise their families there. 
I am surprised that Vermont is losing residents - seems like it would be a lovely, restful place to bring up a young family or to retire to.  But I've only been there on a brief vacation, decades ago.

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Anyway, it seems the OP here is set on staying on the West Coast.

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I would look at the weather, the environment/natural scenery, the cultural and social atmospheres, access to good medical care, the types of housing, any scary (to me) parts of nature that with my luck would probably strike me down within a month (killer bees, mountain lions, giant spiders, poisonous snakes, horrendous tree pollen, things like that), transportation options (planes, trains, taxis, subways) if relevant, the political leanings of the citizenry, the infrastructure, future growth projections, options for the sorts of recreational activities/pursuits that I might be interested in...

Do some internet research, make a list of pros and cons of your top candidates, then take a road trip and spend a couple of days in each place, 
watch the local tv affiliate morning and evening newscasts, read the local newspapers, drive around some likely neighborhoods, get a feeling for the vibe of each place, see what the people are like, which can be SO different from town to town, region to region.

What kind of "discounts" for retirees are you thinking would differ materially from spot to spot?

Are you going to have Medicare for your health insurance?  Whether yes or no, is there a difference in what type of health coverage/facilities/doctors you would get by being resident in Washington vs. Oregon?

Is the type of housing you are looking for more affordable/more plentiful in one spot vs. another -- whether you are looking for a rambling semi-rural house with extra bedrooms for visiting family/friends and yard space for a vegetable garden and chicken coop, or a rule-laden gated community around a golf course, or a condo complex with no yardwork responsibilities, a bungalow with a small yard on the edge of a vibrant college campus, or whatever it is.

Will you be making a decision soon?  Keep the thread updated with what you discover along the way, and what you decide to do!  Best of luck.

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Well lets start by saying I didn't vote for Trump, but willing to give him a shot or at least place a bet how log it will take before he is caught up in some illegal dealing with certain countries or people and his crew of pirates get nailed for defrauding this country, but what the hell the system needed a reboot I hope he just walks the walk and doesn't turn out to be another good old boy making corp America deals !!  What I am looking for is semi city like and what I mean by that is access to medical, culture and a open view of people moving a bit slower then the pressure cooker I live in now in California, can we take a guess where that might be ?  I can rent my garage out for 1500 to 2000 a month or let someone pop a tent in my backyard and rent it for 600.00 It's really a joke here. Traffic starts at 1:30pm now so you pretty much have to plan everything around traffic and housing is almost the highest in the country, with a low inventory of houses and many rented out to people who are paying an insane amount of money.  Yes it's Silicon Valley !!

I like the range of cultures, food, people and so on here, and we have tons of medical to choose from besides the kinda of housing which is fine, your standard house next to a bunch of other houses and large shopping centers not to far away like costco, whole foods, Trader Joes and so on. I lived in Seattle it didn't rain that much and besides the fact I love the rain and hate the heat, which is one of the reasons Fresno and Central valley is not even on the list. I wouldn't mind staying in CA, it's just in the long run if your not working here, it's not that great of a place to live and many of my friends have left to other states for jobs or to retire and income, prop taxes are to high, besides reg taxes at 9.75% so besides the semi cold winters and hot summers, I am just fine with bailing out of the valley. I grew up in CA and it's a great state, but many people like me leave this valley and don't look back, many of them High tech Workers who are sick of the 60 + hour work week and stress to meet deadlines.  High Tech companies need to start moving or opening 2nd campuses in cheaper areas, with less people so people can afford to rent or even buy a house ( I own a house ), it's insanely over priced here.... Look up the cost to rent a 2 bedroom apt or buy a 3 bedroom house in  the area, which leaves you buying one about 25 to 40 miles away which has also gone way up in price.

So I fig while the market is HOT and I am getting tried of being in the valley, it's time to find a new place to call home, hopefully with a water view

That's a basic run down of what i am looking for

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Dilbertic said:   Well lets start by saying I didn't vote for Trump, but willing to give him a shot or at least place a bet how log it will take before he is caught up in some illegal dealing with certain countries or people and his crew of pirates get nailed for defrauding this country, but what the hell the system needed a reboot I hope he just walks the walk and doesn't turn out to be another good old boy making corp America deals !!  What I am looking for is semi city like and what I mean by that is access to medical, culture and a open view of people moving a bit slower then the pressure cooker I live in now in California, can we take a guess where that might be ?  I can rent my garage out for 1500 to 2000 a month or let someone pop a tent in my backyard and rent it for 600.00 It's really a joke here. Traffic starts at 1:30pm now so you pretty much have to plan everything around traffic and housing is almost the highest in the country, with a low inventory of houses and many rented out to people who are paying an insane amount of money.  Yes it's Silicon Valley !!

I like the range of cultures, food, people and so on here, and we have tons of medical to choose from besides the kinda of housing which is fine, your standard house next to a bunch of other houses and large shopping centers not to far away like costco, whole foods, Trader Joes and so on. I lived in Seattle it didn't rain that much and besides the fact I love the rain and hate the heat, which is one of the reasons Fresno and Central valley is not even on the list. I wouldn't mind staying in CA, it's just in the long run if your not working here, it's not that great of a place to live and many of my friends have left to other states for jobs or to retire and income, prop taxes are to high, besides reg taxes at 9.75% so besides the semi cold winters and hot summers, I am just fine with bailing out of the valley. I grew up in CA and it's a great state, but many people like me leave this valley and don't look back, many of them High tech Workers who are sick of the 60 + hour work week and stress to meet deadlines.  High Tech companies need to start moving or opening 2nd campuses in cheaper areas, with less people so people can afford to rent or even buy a house ( I own a house ), it's insanely over priced here.... Look up the cost to rent a 2 bedroom apt or buy a 3 bedroom house in  the area, which leaves you buying one about 25 to 40 miles away which has also gone way up in price.

So I fig while the market is HOT and I am getting tried of being in the valley, it's time to find a new place to call home, hopefully with a water view

That's a basic run down of what i am looking for

  
I have spent a good bit of time in the area on contracts (more in OR) but I actually went from a project in Gresham OR to one in Camas WA.  I was staying near the airport and had easy enough access to the bridge to WA, but in the end I moved to Vancouver.  Once I did I almost never went back over to Portland.

I also have relatives in the Bend area.  They live quite a ways out though, in the desert.  (its a very pretty area, "high desert" but actually has plenty of water due to rivers/lakes)  

Personally I would look at The Dalles if you want to play games with twin cities.  The border follows the Columbia river, plenty of towns to pick.

Another option would be the Willamette Valley, particularly Eugene.  Very hipster friendly, good food, and not as crowded as Portland.

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bopc1996 said:   Wow moving to Oregon or Washington from California? You must live in Fresno or Bakersfield. Yea more expensive but quality of life means something.
  Tell that to the throngs of Californians who move to OR and WA every year. The Seattle area is California, Part II based on where people are from. 

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tennis8363 said:   
bopc1996 said:   Wow moving to Oregon or Washington from California? You must live in Fresno or Bakersfield. Yea more expensive but quality of life means something.
  Tell that to the throngs of Californians who move to OR and WA every year. The Seattle area is California, Part II based on where people are from. 

  Needs more people moving to help with the skyrocketing CA RE prices

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tennis8363 said:   
bopc1996 said:   Wow moving to Oregon or Washington from California? You must live in Fresno or Bakersfield. Yea more expensive but quality of life means something.
  Tell that to the throngs of Californians who move to OR and WA every year. The Seattle area is California, Part II based on where people are from. 

  
That trend is really exaggerated.

http://www.census.gov/data/tables/time-series/demo/geographic-mo... 

Look at 2015.   

40k people moved from CA to OR
but 20.8k people moved from OR to CA
~20k inrease in OR = +0.5% of population

33.1k moved from WA to CA
45k moved from CA to WA
12k increase or about +0.2%

Almost as many Oregonians moved to WA net as CA.    25k moved from WA to OR and 35k moved from OR to WA for net 10k going from OR to WA.

Other states get a alot of net migration from CA too: 
65k Californians moved to TX while 41k Texans moved to CA for ~20k net from CA to TX
54k moved to AZ and 34k went the other way for 20k net to AZ from CA

Idaho gained 18.9k from CA and lost 5.8k to CA for net 13k for +0.8% inflow.

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/08/13/upshot/where-people-in-each-state-were-born.html#Washington
Only 8% of people in WA were born in CA and only 14% of people in OR were born in CA.
Those numbers may seem relatively high but only 47% and 46% of WA and OR are native born.   

And of course CA is the nations largest state and nearby so it makes sense that OR & WA get a lot of people from CA.


ETA :   also found this dated but interesting localisation of state to state migration to and from CA in different time periods.
 

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Dilbertic, I hope you like snow.

Most 'retirees' I know hate the cold.
But then, I'm from SoCal.

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Snow, rain it fine with me.... Hopefully you can take a 30 min shower without guilt or water your plants without people calling the city to bust you... I know we are getting lots of rain now, but that doesn't cover the rest of it. I would trade a view of 2 story house next door for a water view up north   Anyways this is all off topic, I would love to know what people think of the places they live around those areas, which towns are areas are the good and bad ones ! But otherwise lets talk discounts OR vs WA... Incentives taxes, Prop tax, cost of living, up and coming areas and so on...

Thanks

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According to this, Spokane, WA

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VegasAholic said:   According to this, Spokane, WA
  
Spokane is OK.  Lots of break ins and auto theft though.  My car insurance was pretty high.  Short drive to anything outdoors you can think of so that was nice.  Great weather except it can get A LOT of snow .

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My friends and I have been discussing a future retirement in WA, but we are also considering OR as well.  We have all grown up in SoCal and plan to keep a home in Socal for various reasons, but want to find a retirement home in the Pacific Northwest.  So far we have visited Leavenworth, Bellingham, Sequim, Seattle in WA, and Portland, Beaverton, Tiguard in OR.  We all enjoy camping, hiking, cooking, fishing, crafts, woodworking, gardening, biking, beer and coffee.  We are thinking about splitting our time between Socal and the Pacific Northwest.  Our children currently live in Socal, the Bay Area and Seattle.  Our future grandchildren will probably grow up in these areas as well.  I'm the type that buys tools from Bridge City Tool Works and fixtures from Rejuvenation Lighting so l like artisans and craftsman towns.  My wife is a foodie and crafts person.  

We have friends who have moved up to Seattle and Bellingham who have told us that their medical issues have significantly improved since leaving SoCal.  One friend had severe and debilitating migraines all her life but they greatly reduced after she moved to Bellingham.  Another one with Bronchitis and frequent cold/flu episodes in SoCal experienced a significant reduction since moving to Seattle.  

We have visited WA and OR during the winter months to see what it's like.  Flights from LAX to SEA are sometimes $59 one-way so it's pretty cheap to fly up there to visit.  Retirement will be 3-7 years off for most of us so we're starting to plan now.  I personally like big cities like Seattle and Portland but it's pricier and has many of the big city issues (traffic and parking) that we face in the SoCal SGV area we are all living in.  I'd like to live close to a big city with a high walkability score, but not necessarily in one.  I'll try to visit some of the towns mentioned in this thread and will be following this thread.

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momoman said:   My friends and I have been discussing a future retirement in WA, but we are also considering OR as well.  We have all grown up in SoCal and plan to keep a home in Socal for various reasons, but want to find a retirement home in the Pacific Northwest.  So far we have visited Leavenworth, Bellingham, Sequim, Seattle in WA, and Portland, Beaverton, Tiguard in OR.  We all enjoy camping, hiking, cooking, fishing, crafts, woodworking, gardening, biking, beer and coffee.  We are thinking about splitting our time between Socal and the Pacific Northwest.  Our children currently live in Socal, the Bay Area and Seattle.  Our future grandchildren will probably grow up in these areas as well.  I'm the type that buys tools from Bridge City Tool Works and fixtures from Rejuvenation Lighting so l like artisans and craftsman towns.  My wife is a foodie and crafts person.  

We have friends who have moved up to Seattle and Bellingham who have told us that their medical issues have significantly improved since leaving SoCal.  One friend had severe and debilitating migraines all her life but they greatly reduced after she moved to Bellingham.  Another one with Bronchitis and frequent cold/flu episodes in SoCal experienced a significant reduction since moving to Seattle.  

We have visited WA and OR during the winter months to see what it's like.  Flights from LAX to SEA are sometimes $59 one-way so it's pretty cheap to fly up there to visit.  Retirement will be 3-7 years off for most of us so we're starting to plan now.  I personally like big cities like Seattle and Portland but it's pricier and has many of the big city issues (traffic and parking) that we face in the SoCal SGV area we are all living in.  I'd like to live close to a big city with a high walkability score, but not necessarily in one.  I'll try to visit some of the towns mentioned in this thread and will be following this thread.

  
Momo,  Check out Port Angeles and Port Townsend on the NW WA coast.  Port Angeles is further from Seattle but has a regular Ferry that crosses to Victoria BC.  Very arty/Craftsman sort of towns. particularly Townsend.  (the island cities are nice too, but much more expensive)

Edit to add:  Jerosen, the issue is that the influx of Californians tend to Target specific areas while the outflow is across the entire state.  Certain areas that are "retirement friendly" like Bend have developers actively building for that influx.

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Moving from CA to WA or OR is analagous to trading in a Tesla for a Corolla. There's a reason why CA is so expensive. Capitalism never lies.

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corollation said:   Moving from CA to WA or OR is analagous to trading in a Tesla for a Corolla. There's a reason why CA is so expensive. Capitalism never lies.
  while I will never live in CA myself, this needs more green. Along those lines, here is a headline from today's SFGate
Retirees might want to move to 1 of these states rather than stay in California
What is left unsaid is that these now-retirees lived in CA in the first place for the jobs that didn't exist elsewhere.

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You don't need to leave CA to save money. I moved from Silicon Valley to el dorado county. In between Tahoe and Bay Area.

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griffeycom said:   
VegasAholic said:   According to this, Spokane, WA
  
Spokane is OK.  Lots of break ins and auto theft though.  My car insurance was pretty high.  Short drive to anything outdoors you can think of so that was nice.  Great weather except it can get A LOT of snow .

  
Yeah Spokane is an option too.    yes the negatives are higher property crime rate and snow.   The city is worse off economically and hence the higher crime.

Plus its a relatively big city at 3rd largest in OR & WA too with more amenities than many cities in the area other than Seattle and Portland.    Housing is still relatively affordable and cheaper than most of the area.

 

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corollation said:   Moving from CA to WA or OR is analagous to trading in a Tesla for a Corolla. There's a reason why CA is so expensive. Capitalism never lies.
  
That's absurd and you have no idea what you're talking about.  People live in every state for a myriad of reasons.  There are rich, poor, classy, degenerate, idiots, geniuses in every state in the union.  Most choose to live in those places for reasons that have little to do with economics.  My family moved from California to Oregon in the 70's. If you handed me 5 million dollars tomorrow to move back, I wouldn't, and my work has taken me to literally every single city in Southern California, so it's not like I don't know the place, plus I had a 7 year gig in SF - I know most of the state well.  But I wouldn't live there.  The people that do live there have their reasons and they are probably great ones.  I've been sent to 2/3s of the States on work - I wouldn't consider moving to most, but you can't compare the states on a linear scale - they are right for the people who live there.

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I will be talking to my tax guy pretty soon and see what he says, but to give you an idea on Silicon Valley Housing, the avg house is running in the 900's for a 3/2 house, Now I say avg, we have worse and better areas, but the nicer areas the same house would run about 1.4mil or more. rent is about 3k for a 2bd apt and a condo about 3500k, so a house is around 3500 to 6k and mean time traffic sucks
 

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