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Leaving Long Island

Commenter Chela had this to say on the Stability Vs. Mobility thread:

I’m going to speak from personal experience, and this phenomenon is very real for my family and my friends. We live on Long Island one of the most expensive areas to live in the country as an example, my house was purchased for $380K, has a property tax of $11k/per year,it is a 100 year old 3br house that always needs repairs and we bought in an ok school district. My spouse and I are looking for jobs back in Wisconsin (where he’s from),Charlotte where my brother is moving his young family because he can’t afford to live on LI, central Florida where most of most of my family has moved to because of cost of living, or Dallas area because of job growth and cost of living.

I would hate to leave my immediate family but with a family of 4 we are maxing out our resources. If we want to increase our family and be fiscally responsible ( college funds, retirement funds) and have a better quality of life ( my spouse commutes 3 hours/per day and is gone from home 12 hours per day) we have to leave. I love living in NY, I love being so close to NYC but I love my children and husband more. Out of all the couple’s I know, only two are planning on staying in the NY tri-state area AND having children. Both couple’s make over $250K a year. Everyone else is renting and not having kids or looking out of state it’s unsustainable.

This is an older article but it is still relevant:

Several years ago, I was talking to some folks in NYC about a great journalism job there, at a senior level in a thriving publication. It would have been the kind of thing I would have been good at, and would have loved. But it would have required moving back to the New York area. The pay would have required my settling with my family in some relatively distant suburb, one with a big commute. I would have worked long hours some days, which, with the commute, would have meant seeing a lot less of my family. It was a no-go for us.

It’s strange how apathetic some communities are to this. In my own parish, West Feliciana, we have a serious problem with a lack of affordable housing, for various reasons. It’s very hard for young people to come back, even young people starting their families. This is an issue in a parish president election going on now. Many older voters in the parish just don’t see the problem. I ran into a friend of mine, a single mom, at the post office on Election Day last weekend. I asked her if she had voted. She said yes — and then she expressed visibly anger at the “everything’s just fine” candidate in the election. “He doesn’t even see what life is like for my generation here,” she said.

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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