Texas or florida? Ready to leave california

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    Hello there, fellow RNs. I am a 50 Y/O RN who has lived & worked in San Diego for 22 years. I went from a CNA, LVN, RN & now I am pursuing my BSN, which I will complete next Summer. Believe me, all this has been a long, struggle. Jobs here are very slim, due to the economy & all the traveling nurses that stayed out here. I am interesting in buying a house in Florida or Texas. I want to take a traveling job at either one of these states, either Houston, TX or Jacksonville, Fl. Are there any companies that use traveling nurses, & if so, which state will most likely use travelers? I want to check out the city & state before I make a move, so that I can avoid making a huge mistake. Has anyone out there worked at any facility in either Houston or Jacksonville? I would like to know the BEST & WORST PLACES TO LIVE & WORK in both of these cities & states, & anywhere that I should avoid. ALL REPLIES ARE WELCOME & STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL. THANKS IN ADVANCE. Aquagem1963@sbcglobal.net

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  2. 11 Comments...

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    You may have more luck with info on travel companies if you post your query in the Travel Nurse forum (Travel Nursing) . I know that many organizations in the Houston area are utilizing travelers to fill OB & specialty ICU positions.

    Houston is a terrific place to live - of course, as a H-town native, I am a tad biased. Tx has a low cost of living & no state income tax. Climate is temperate/tropical. Housing costs are low. Plenty of affordable options - I think the median single-family house cost is the lowest in any major metro area in the US. As far as location.. there is not 'right' answer. It all depends on where you work and how far you want to commute. Houston has no zoning (never has, never will), so it is very eclectic - shopping & services are never very far away. We're not keen on public transportation so a reliable air conditioned car is one of life's necessities - LOL.

    Good luck on your transition.
    turnforthenurseRN and Meriwhen like this.
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    I currently live in Florida, but have resided in Texas and still have many friends there. The economic and job markets in Texas are MUCH better than Florida. Florida is still in a slump...my county as 10% unemployment and our 3rd largest employer is getting ready to layoff 500 employees.
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    I lived in South Texas (Corpus Christi) and loved it. We're looking at moving back there in a few years. Agree with HouTx's list of pros re Texas, and adding that Corpus' weather is a bit kinder in the summer than Houston's (less humidity and more breeze...still gets hot as hell like Houston does though).

    Despite its position on the Gulf, few storms pester Corpus. Only one hurricane came close when I was living there...granted, its name was Rita. But it was a nice excuse to evacuate...er, visit San Antonio which is only 2 hours away
    Last edit by Meriwhen on May 2, '13
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    Moved to Travel Nursing to help you get more responses.
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    Texas over Florida any day of the week. Living costs alone are enough to make it worth it. You can get ocean from either state. Texas not as humid, and wages are better in Texas. Did I mention, you can get a beautiful home in Texas for a reasonable amount? Rent in Florida is easily $1500 for a 2 bedroom... I have only briefly lived in both states, but that would be an easy call for me.
    Meriwhen likes this.
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    Both states use tons of travelers, but Florida is more seasonal. You can travel to several areas in both states to see if you are interested in living there. Both states are large with big regional differences and flavors.

    Since those two states are in the top half dozen for travelers, you will easily find many agencies able to offer you many assignments in many parts of both states.
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    i actually lived in jax for most of my life..went to college there..and worked there for several years before starting to travel. my last travel assignment also happened to be in houston. texas is cool, though houston was not my favorite. i have lived all over the country and the traffic in that city is a disaster. the downtown is nice and there are always things going on and in a hour or so you can be in galveston on the beach. the hospital i worked at was fine but nothing great. if i ever go back to texas i will go to austin or san antonio, of which i loved. all and all though i did not like working/living in houston. though yes cost of living is low.

    jax is great because in 30 mins you are at the beach. you could choose to work/live at the beach if you liked (baptist medical center-beaches campus). the actual downtown isnt very active, but they are working on it, and it does has some great places/things to do. also there are some great downtown neighborhoods that are very active. it, like houston, is pretty spread out. neither are cities you could live in without a car. they both lack any actual public transportation. in jax you wont see a lot of tourist which is nice. houston is a huge city vs jax that is a little more low-key and you'll see that in the people. the cost of living in jax is low though too. i rented a house very reasonably there.

    hope that helps!
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    I've lived in Houston TX my whole life. Never lived in Florida so I can't compare. Did travel nursing to get away from Houston and to explore what different cities in the US could offer. Houston is a big city, you will need to have a reliable transportation. Not big on public transportation. I've live in the north suburbs of Houston... Spring Tx, Woodlands Tx, Klein Tx and Tomball Tx. All great suburban communities, great for raising children and starting families. Not a lot of diversity if you compare it to San Diego Ca. The weather is literally bipolar. From windy, to rainy, to cold...very unpredictable at times in the winter. The summer is scorching hot! Can go up to 100 degrees or a little more. The nearest beach I can think of is Galveston TX and let me tell you it's not comparable to the beautiful beaches of San Diego. Yes the housing is cheap if you compare it to California or Florida. But the income is also low. So either choose "quality of life" or "cheaper living" if you ask me. I hope this helps you out with making the big decision of moving.
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    I work in Orlando, FL. It is nearly impossible to get an RN job here without a BSN. Orlando Health and Florida Hospital are the 2 major systems around here and they are both working on getting Magnet status. Orlando Health is where I work and I love it, but there have been recent MAJOR cutbacks in staffing and other changes that I'm not too sure how they work environment will be when this is all done. Florida Hospital is not having the same cutbacks from what I hear. Outside of Orlando I have heard great things about Tampa General in Tampa and Jackson Memorial in Miami. Good luck.


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