What to like about your state - page 2
Hello all, I will hopefully be graduating this May and I am thinking about moving out of state for a change of scenery, I live in NH. Looking to hear from you all about the state you live in... Read More
Jan 6, '07Occupation: Naval Officer on the Peds Ward at Naval Medical Center San Diego Specialty: ER,ICU and Progressive Care Unit,Peds ; Joined: Oct '06; Posts: 329; Likes: 23TN and CA
I grew up in TN then moved to southern CA with the Navy.
Tn has all 4 seasons. The part of TN I'm from we didn't get much snow (northeast Tn); maybe 1 "big" snow storm a winter. We had wonderful thunderstorms in the spring/summer, which I miss very much now. The summers are extremly humid though! I grew up near the mountains, so there's rec. stuff to do there. Then we had several lakes around that area too. Cost of living is really cheap in Northeast TN; you can buy a really nice house for $200k. However, since cost of living is so cheap there you starting out salary isn't as much as what others have mentioned. New grads make any where from $16-$18/hr in the towns that I'm from. But it evens out when you consider how low the cost of living is in Northeast TN. And hospitals are always hiring; I had 2 job offers besides the Navy when I graduated.
Now CA is another story! I now live in San Diego, which is very expensive area to live in. There would be no way I could live here if the navy didn't pay for my housing! There are several hospitals in the area, which pays fairly well starting out. I heard one civilian nurse that I work with say that she started out at $22/hr or something like that (it may be more). I do love living so close to the beach (9 blocks), but I don't enjoy all the people or the traffic. There is something for everyone here, if you can afford it! I do love the weather here though! We don't get much rain, and the average temp is in the upper 60's and 70's all yr round. No humidity! Thank goodness! And of course no snow in the area I live, but they do get some snow in East San Diego County.
So that's two different ends of the spectrum for you!Last edit by navynurse06 on Jan 6, '07
Jan 6, '07Specialty: 3 year(s) of experience in Critical Care, Home Health ; Joined: Jul '04; Posts: 137; Likes: 10Indiana - Central
4 seasons with mild winter. Cost of living is low, real estate CHEAP (custom built home, 2 stories, 2500 sq.ft. 125,000). New Grad pay around $20. Lots of camping, lakes and rivers.
Florida - Southeast
Hot humid summers, warm winter. Cost of living is outrageous. Real estate is even more outrageous. (1 bedroom condo conversion 250,000). New grad pay $18-$19. Lot of beaches and rivers (watch out for gators though)
Arizona - Metro Phoenix
HOT dry summers, warm winter with chilly nights. Cost of living is High. Cost of Real estate is High (10 year old 3 bedroom ranch 250,00-300,00) New grad pay $22-23. Beautiful mountains and hiking.
I have had quite a busy year, I have lived and worked and all three places the past year. I love Indiana!! I hated Florida. I liked Arizona, but DH hated it. Arizona pay nurses extremely well, I was making over $40/hr working weekends only. However, the conditions were horrible and I worked my butt off for that money. Florida was so expensive, and most patients their are very very old, with a lot of co-morbidities.
Jan 7, '07Occupation: SAHM/Student Joined: Dec '06; Posts: 2
Jan 7, '07Occupation: Pediatric RN, ICU coordinator Specialty: 4 year(s) of experience in PICU, surgical post-op ; From: CA ; Joined: Dec '06; Posts: 424; Likes: 187I live in Jersey, and I'm afraid I wouldn't necessarily reccomend it.
I work in a large teaching facility. I started at $30/hr as a new grad. The cost of living, however, it outrageous, especially since I live less than 30 miles from NYC. I still live at home, so I'm not sure of exact prices, but buying a house is rough. However, in terms of things to do? We rule. I can hop on the train and be in the city in less than an hour. Or I can jump in the car and drive an hour to the beach. I love Jersey- I've lived here all my life. Also, there are loads of hospitals. If you don't find what you're looking at in one, you can go a few miles down the road and try another!
Jan 7, '07Joined: Feb '06; Posts: 229; Likes: 55I'm in western Montana. We have four seasons, June, July, August and Winter. Lots of snow and cold. Starting pay for RN's is about 20.00 per hour. Plenty of perks too. Lots of summer and winter sports, lots of skiing and water sports. Good universities and great communities to raise children. cost of living is higher in the western side of the state. We do not have sales tax but have state income taxes and property taxes if you own your own home. I also feel that we have pretty darn good health care where care is very personal and the hospitals are all small enough that staff knows everyone in the hospital. Come on out. Its not hard to get a job as a nurse here.
Jan 8, '07Joined: Feb '03; Posts: 1,717; Likes: 425I live in Tennessee... also grew up in the Northeast part of the state. It is a beautiful state. Cost of living is low and so salaries will not be as high as other places but it evens out. There is no income tax in TN either, but a high sales tax. There is a wide variety across the state- the mountains, lakes, etc. in eastern TN, the big city in Nashville, and Memphis and the river etc. and flat land out in West TN. I guess I am biased but I love it here. I also encourage you to read through the different "state forums" here- a lot of them are not really active but you can get a "feel" for the certain states and nursing conditions etc. from just glancing through.
Jan 10, '07Occupation: Registered Nurse Specialty: 8 year(s) of experience in ICU, psych, corrections ; From: US ; Joined: Sep '03; Posts: 1,163; Likes: 465I am a former Texan living in Northern Nevada. I lived in Texas from age 8 until 21 and in Nevada from age 21 to current (33). There are pros and cons to each state I call "home"
I grew in a small town called Humble, TX...it was about 35 minutes northeast of Houston and I loved it. Here are the pros to the good ol' south (or at least where I grew up!):
CHEAP, CHEAP cost of living, nice neighborhoods, lots of destinations within a day's drive (Austin, San Antonio, Hill Country where we would go tubin' down the Guadalupe River, etc) and a close knit group of neighbors that made growing up there very enjoyable. Plus, it was only 35 minutes to the "big city" of Houston with TONS to do. Great opera, ballet, and museums galore. The zoo is a good one (although it pales in comparison to the beautiful San Diego Zoo) and there are tons of museums to interest every age group.
It's a town you can have fun in whether you are a young person in their 20's/30's or a parent with children to amuse. We sold our house for $94,000....it was almost 2000sq ft with landscaping/sprinkler system, excellent school district, former model home with a $10,000 sun room addition built on. No state income tax makes it appealing as well. Oh, and did I mention the food??? Houston is a mecca for amazing restaurants serving just about any type of food you can imagine. I do miss my dinners out as the food here sucks.... ....okay, okay...it's not THAT bad here. But it pales in comparison to the food I left behind in the south.
Cons to Texas: hot, hot, hot summers (the heat ain't so bad...the humidity sucks....although you'll have less wrinkles than those who live in dry states...:roll ). Very high property taxes....we paid around $3500-4000 a year on a house that was worth just over $90k...compared to where I live now, that's highway robbery. Bugs, bugs, and more bugs. Fire ants, cockroaches, fleas, mosquitos, june bugs, and many others I'm sure I've forgotten about over the years. I'm sure there are other cons but they escape me at this moment.
Now, northern Nevada....it took me years to appreciate where I currently live. Probably because I insisted on comparing it with my former home in Texas. That's like comparing apples to oranges. This place has its own kind of charm. These are what I consider to be the pros:
The weather is awesome. It snows here in the wintertime but not enough that you are digging out your car and snow plows outnumber cars. It gets cold but not for very long. Winter lasts from about December to March and the spring rolls around (my favorite season). Spring is beautiful with not too much rain (in fact, we don't get many thunderstorms here at all). Summer is really nice because it's hot (around 95 during July and August) but with virtually no humidity. I love the no humidity factor (except for all the wrinkles I'm acquiring by living in the dry air. It's sunny the majority of the days of the year, whether it's winter or summer.
Lake Tahoe is amazing and about a 30 minute drive from where I live. Lots of great boating, fishing, camping, biking, skiing/snowboarding, and any other outdoor activity you can imagine. It's a place that active people love to visit because there is so much to do. Plus, when you get bored of this scenery, Yosemite is but a few hours away, San Francisco is about a 5 hour drive, Vegas is around 7 hours away (but only an hour by plane....if that), and the Oregon and California coast are all within a days drive. No bugs!!! No fleas, cockroaches, fire ants, and mosquitos are in short supply. I love not having to flea-dip my animals and being able to walk in my kitchen in the middle of the night without fear of little critters scurrying around.
Cons: Outrageous cost of living....simply crazy. A 1500sq ft home in a decent neighborhood will run you around $320k or so and a new home will run you closer to $400k. It's crazy and even after so many years here, I still can't get over how much more expensive the cost of living is here when compared to Texas. As I mentioned before....the food stinks. It's difficult to find a place to have a tasty dinner with your friends, hubbie, or children. You can stick to the chain places and know what you're going to get but I really miss the BBQ and TexMex the south had to offer. Culture here isn't exactly abundant. They do have a good opera for the size of the town, but there are no museums, no ballet, live music is difficult to find, and if you are into it, the club/bar scene stinks. No beautiful parks, bayou, or zoo like Houston had. Gas is ridiculously expensive....we are one of the highest price places to fill up at the pump.
As for pay....it's about the same. I am a year out from school and make $28/hr. In Houston, I would get paid around $24/25 but the cost of living is much less there so it evens out. I have no idea how the patient/nurse ratios compare but I can tell you here it's 2:1 in the ICU unless we are short then some have 3 patient assignments. On the floor, I think day shift has around 5-6 patients and at night, they average 8 patients but can have up to 9-10. I'm guessimating as I have never worked the floor but have friends who do.
All in all, I enjoy living here and I enjoyed living in Texas. Would I move back? I don't know because I've grown to really love the weather, mountains, etc. here. Where I lived in Texas, it was flat, flat, flat and there weren't really 4 seasons. Driving to the mountains took FOREVER in Texas and here, they are in my backyard. I miss the food, the closeness neighbors seemed to have, the good schools (at least when I lived there...I think Bush ruined that), and the summers of lazing around the pool. It's a tough call because I think about what a grand house we could have back in the south when we live in a 70's piece of crap now. For what we pay for houses here, we could live in a 3500sq ft home on the golf course in a gated community back in Texas. But I guess it's a give and take. For now, we are happy here but who knows in the future. Ugh, sorry this turned out to be so long....:smackingf I wanted to thorough...lol!!
Jan 10, '07Occupation: Nurse Consultant to a government agency Joined: Apr '03; Posts: 1,052; Likes: 806I've lived in 5 states, including NH. Native New Jerseyan, now in Wisconsin for 20 years.
Wisconsin is wonderful in many ways. Gorgeous summers, lovely fall. Almost no spring...we go winter into summer. Cost of living is (to my eye) very easy. Winters vary a lot...some years very little snow especially in the south, other years many feet. Not as much snow as the years I lived in NH.
People in WI tend to be extremely booster-y about the state. Very patriotic about the college teams and the Packers. Far less enthusiasm for baseball than I'm used to. I did work one place that required staff to wear Packer colors on Fridays. If you don't like football, you need to learn to fake it.
Salaries are much lower than , say, NY or NJ. I have spoken to many recruiters about this and the thinking is: "people want to live here, why should we pay more. "
Traffic is light, dress is casual, people are pretty friendly. For lack of a better expression, the living is easy here. There are McMansions but there are also many options for low cost housing. In my neighborhood, houses go for less than 200K. The schools are good I'm told (no kids). The taxes are pretty high to pay for them.
WI has some amazing cultural treasures ....a whole slew of Frank Lloyd Wright houses (he grew up here), Ten Chimneys (the home of Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne), an international crane foundation, as well as staggering amounts of wilderness.
Good luck with your search.
Jan 14, '07Joined: Oct '06; Posts: 2,602; Likes: 3,890Thank you all who have posted thus far. Please keep 'em comming. I appreciate it. :spin: