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Thread: How hard is it moving from the East Coast to the West Coast?

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    #1

    How hard is it moving from the East Coast to the West Coast?

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    We have been an East Coast Navy family for the last 17 years. The most recent batch of orders he had to pick from were all CA I am worried about our finances and the kids schooling. (Kindy, 5th grade and 8th grade)
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    #2
    i recently did the opposite a few years ago... west coast desert to east coast! i don't have any children though, so i can't help you there. i'm assuming you are asking more logistically for them, or just the atmosphere or... ?
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    #3
    More the money aspect. I thought our $3.67 per gallon gas was outrageous, our car loans, insurance and CC bills wont go anywhere but up, I am afraid we will go bankrupt in CA.
    I think I have read enough about the schools being way behind the East Coast schools, I guess they will just be ahead of the curve out there...if we get orders in CA
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    #4
    I moved from North Carolina to CA 3 years ago.

    What part of CA are you moving to? I'm in San Diego & gas ranges from around the just below $4 to above $5.

    For your car loan & insurance, you can keep your current state tags since you'll be moving on military orders so that shouldn't change & neither should your credit card bills.

    No information on schools though because my son is only about 5 months.

    ETA:
    I think the only huge change will probably be housing. But that also depends on what part of CA you will be moving to.

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    #5
    How is the cost of food out there? I know our bills will stay the same, (well except our car insurance, that will go up) I just know what our budget can take and $4+ a gallon of gas scares me. But so does needing to sell or rent out our house here in VA. I am comfortable with this low cost of living area....
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    Hmm, we moved from Georgia to California to Georgia to California... last year. It's not so bad! Schools will very much depend on where you live. There are good schools in my neighbourhood and terrible ones ten miles up the road- you can definitely research specific schools and do your best to live in the boundaries of very good schools. Gas is expensive, but I've found food to be cheaper, so for us it evens out. Actually, it more than evens out because DH eats a LOT of food, and we don't drive a whole lot. Also, again depending on where in CA you go, your BAH may be very high, and you may be able to find a place well under it. We chose not to live in military housing this time and we save about 1/4 of our BAH. That helps with the cost of living a lot. You can do this!
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    #7
    Why would your car loans change? You wouldn't be taking out a new car loan when you move... Can't you keep you loans and cars as is in your current state? You can also keep your cars insured in your home of record if they are in your DH's name. That is what DH did and it was over $100 cheaper just for my car to insure it that way. Which I even bought my car in CA, but I got in insured as a Florida car since it's in DH's name. Then if we ever move back to CA( I pray to god that NEVER happens.) we would keep both cars inured as Florida cars since this is DH's home of record state.

    Only thing your DH will have to do is get a "smog test" done for his car. For sure in San Diego if y'all go there since that is a rule they have there...

    Gas prices are insane there, and have been insane there forever. We lived there for about $3 years, and I could hear my wallet crying each time I had to fill up my gas tank. Also, live in base housing if y'all can get base housing. For sure if it won't take the full BAH, because the cost of living in CA is also INSANE to me. We paid about $1,800(without a pet so no pet rent, and the place didn't even have washer or dryer hook ups) for a shitty poorly maintained town home near Central San Diego, and the area we lived in was kinda shady to say the least. Murphy Canyon is nice if you get San Diego aim for somewhere like Murphy Canyon.

    CA is also one of the highest taxed states. so expect even grocery shopping go up if you shop off base. I saved nearly $100 just shopping on base. This was $100 saved buying the exact same items I would of gotten off base, but thanks to how much things are taxed there. I saved SO much money buying pretty much everything we needed on base. I even got DD's clothes, my clothes, my make up, our shoes, and extc on base. Nice part about San Diego is the Naval base off of 32nd has pretty much everything. Even victory secret stuff. So yeah I went there literally for pretty much everything. Besides small stuff I got at Walmart and every now and then I'd treat us to Target for a few things. Shopping on base and couponing is the only way we survived in CA. My family suffered big time the first year and a half ish that we were in CA. Due purely to the cost of living being so much higher than what it was when we here in Hampton. Which BAH did NOT cover basic bill when we first got there. Hell it barely covered all of the rent much-less anything extra.

    Oh and watch where you move, and make SURE you have assigned parking spots. For sure again if you move to San Diego and don't live in housing. The first place we moved into we learned the hard way that "available parking for residents" did not mean we'd get a spot in any of the parking spots. 99% of the time we were parking out in the street until I managed to budget in paying an extra $50 a month. Just so we could get an assigned parking spot. So I wasn't walking about half a mile one way alone in a shady area with groceries and a toddler.. First world problems I know, but I HATED it to the point I refused to buy anything we didn't NEED. Just so I wouldn't have to drag huge amounts of crap all the way from my car. while also trying to keep an eye on DD. Making sure she wasn't in the street, or crossing an area without me that would o put her at danger for getting hit by a car...(We lived dead smack in the middle of two of the major highways that run threw San Diego.. Literally in the little triangle where they crossed each other is where we lived for about a year till our contract was up. )


    Oh an if you live out of base housing. I strongly suggest NOT signing ANY lease till you see the please you're wanting to rent in person. We moved from Hampton to San Diego when the nightmare above happened, and like idiots we signed the lease. all of that thinking it looked and sounded great. We were supposed to get a newly renovated town home, and the management seemed to be amazing. It looked lovely online as well. Even had mostly decent reviews, and they also had lots of military families living there so I thought "Great!" Never, ever again.


    Schools in CA. like everywhere, are a hit and miss. It really depends on where you end up there. Daycare prices and quality even vary from place to place. Heck it varied a LOT just in San Diego. One daycare I looked into wanted over $900 a week just for half days. Then another wanted only about $160 a week for the same number of hours. The cheaper daycare was also better rated...

    There are some nice areas like Monterrey. and the cost of living there is still really high. However it is beautiful and everything there is so close you can walk pretty much everywhere. I've heard the schools up there are nice as well, but then again the people that live up there have . Which seems to always be the case. You find the NICE areas, and you'll find the NICE schoolSo hopefully you get a nice part of CA like that!
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    #8
    Our car loan wont change but legally you have to change the car insurance to where the car is located. We would have to change the insurance to CA. However, your husband doesn't have to change his drivers license to CA he can keep his from his home of record.
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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by HeatherMax View Post
    Our car loan wont change but legally you have to change the car insurance to where the car is located. We would have to change the insurance to CA. However, your husband doesn't have to change his drivers license to CA he can keep his from his home of record.
    You don't have to change your license here as the spouse anymore either, which is really nice. I keep mine from our HOR. The only issue with that is renewing it- I'm from CO and when you renew online or by mail, they will only mail it to an in-state address. Not a huge deal, I just had mine sent to my parents' house, but that just means it takes a little longer to get to me. I'm sure that varies from state to state.
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by HeatherMax View Post
    Our car loan wont change but legally you have to change the car insurance to where the car is located. We would have to change the insurance to CA. However, your husband doesn't have to change his drivers license to CA he can keep his from his home of record.

    Not if the insurance is with the state he has for home of record. DH moved from state to state, and he never once changed his insurance. In 9 years, and after living in multiple state. He never once had to change his insurance information to the state he moved to. Even in CA he had Florida plates, Florida insurance, and the whole nine yards all 3 years we were there.

    Heck our car that I bought IN CA, but got the title done in DH's name. I got a little over $100 OFF my insurance, because it was in DH's name and DH was an out of state resident. He can keep the insurance AND his drivers license as his home of record, and IF you choose to do the insurance in CA. Which you don't have to do as far as I know, and we'll never do if DH goes back to active duty. You even get a discount if it's in his name. Since he'd be an out of state resident. You'd just have to make sure to renew the insurance on base to get the discount. That is what we did when I bought my car I have now. Since I bought it in CA and DH was deployed. I just did it with CA plates, but I got that $100 due to the fact DH was an out of state resident.
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