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Possible Move into the Bay Area

234 Views 7 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  brads03zx3
Hey guys, there's a good possibility I could be moving into the San Francisco Bay area (Berkeley, specifically) sometime around next June or July. I thought I'd ask for some of your unbaised opinions on the area.

I'd really need to stay in Berkeley to be close to the university, but my fiance would be working out of somewhere San Francisco. How bad would the commute be? A lot of toll roads? Is there safe, reliable public transportation of some kind?

I've been to San Francisco, but never to the Oakland/Berkeley area. What do you guys think of the area? Clean and safe to walk around at night, or would I need to lock the doors and bar the windows at sunset? Is there stuff to do around there? Is housing easy to come by? About how much is a decent appartment? $1 per sqft, $2 per sqft for a appartment rental? I guess everyone here owns a car, so it can't be too expensive to drive/park cars in and around the area the Bay Area, right? I'd hate to have to sell the SVTF...

I'm coming from the Midtown/Buckhead area of Atlanta, GA. I really like where I am now as far as traffic, shopping, activities, housing, and atmosphere are concerned, so if anyone has had experience in both the Bay Area and in Atlanta, I'd really appreciate your thoughts on how the two areas compare.

I know it's a ton of questions, but thanks a lot for your input, you're really helping me out.
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Wow, where is the help, Bay Area Folk???

I'm not sure I'm qualified to answer but here goes... Berkeley and Oakland are great (and expensive!) towns, but you would still want to lock your doors at night. Public transportation in the bay area is excellent. Be sure to check out BART as it usually is the best way to get from East Bay to The City (SF). Parking is usually problematic but you shouldn't have to sell your SVT.

Sorry it isn't much info. Hopefully someone who actually lives close by can add to it. AND...WELCOME to the Golden State!!!
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Thanks for the reply! That's good to hear about BART and that parking isn't too terrible (really would like to keep the car). I hoping to visit the area in January to get a good look at the place before anything is final. I'm pretty excited about the idea of moving to Cal, just not to familiar with the place.

Any and all comments about the Bay Area are welcome! I appreciate input from you guys. The only other people I can think to ask about this stuff are going to be a little bias and might just tell me what ever it is I want to hear. Thanks for helping out this Georgia boy.
I guess I am kind of biased and that is why I tried to stay out of this post but the Bay Area is the busiest place in the world second to maybe Hong Kong. If you are going to school at Berkeley good for you as they are among the top three schools in the Nation. Like was said before, you don't have to give up your car but you need to find a place where you can park it. Most parking in the bay area is either quite a walk from where you want to be, it costs a lot, or both. The bay area also has one of the highest costs of living as well, though the valley is catching up. I would recommend taking some time to visit the area. I guarantee that if you tell us when you will be coming we can set up a Focus G2G with at least a few cars. There are plenty of tour guides here on the jet that can give you the spots to see and those to avoid.

There will be a toll to cross the bridge from the east bay to the west bay (berkeley to SF) but I think you can purchase yearly fast passes (or something along those lines). I would think that decent apartments would be more than $1.50/sq foot...probably in the $2+ range.

Take my post with a grain of salt because I really don't care to be in the bay area, though there is a lot there and there is a lot of money to be made there. It is not a coincidence that there are millions of people in the area. Good luck.
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Take my post with a grain of salt because I really don't care to be in the bay area
Actually, I want to hear all kinds of opinions: like the area, dislike the area, whatever. What I meant by bias is that the only other people I can think to ask this stuff might just try to sell me on the area, regardless of what they actually think of it. So, thanks for your thoughts! I don't post on the 'jet too often, but I lurk and trust your opinions.

What is it about the place that you don't like? Too crowded? Too expensive?
I think it is way too crowded and I have never been to the bay area and not sat in traffic. If you have already checked out a map, I live a little less than an hour east of Livermore (easternmost bay area). My dad commuted to San Jose for about 15 years because my parents could not afford a home in the bay. The commute (about 1.5-2 hours one way) drove him insane. He has since retired from the military and has a cabinet shop less than an hour from our home. Berkeley and San Francisco are home to the most political and social radicals in America (by radical I don't just mean liberal, but ultraconservatives as well). The city of San Francisco actually gave marriage licenses to Same-sex couples for 3 months even though it was illegal in California. California refused to recognize the licenses at that time, but just recently legalized same-sex marriage. I will come up with other reasons later. Like I said, there are people that love the bay area, but I don't. I would suggest spending some time around there before you actually make an expensive decision. Take care.
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Ok, here goes my take on the bay area. You will be moving into THE American Melting Pot. Public transportation, if you use it, works great. When going into San Francisco it's recommended. If you are going anywhere else, take a car. Parking isn't too bad around the university or around Berkeley, they have resident parking only.

The Economy is about 6 to 12 month behind the nation, so if you see an upswing in Atlanta, move to California and you will see it again. The jobs pay big bucks, which is great cuase things cost big bucks.

You are moving into a place where the whole world vacations, everything is within driving distance, and I mean everything. Beaches, world class musuems, skiing, deserts, redwood forests, world best golf courses, architechtual wonders, colleges and universities, world business head quarters, gambling, the Mistery Spot ( he he he) and the list goes on and on. You can live here for 30 years and still have places to see and things to do. There are two professional football teams, two baseball teams, one hockey team, one basketball team, well not really pro but they play pros, horse racing, race tracks. The arts, your covered, ballet, opera, symphonies. If you're into the darker side of life, some of the wierdest, darkest clubs, and stuff are in the area, and California's Death Row is over the bridge at San Quentin.

I would give the Bay Area an A+ even with all it's shortcomings. The weather is the best and the people you can't beat, well you can beat them but they have to request it before hand so you can bring the proper tools.

Hope this helps, if you need more specific info, just let me know, I can pick up info for you and mail it out to you.

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Big are great. I do forget how great the area is. The weather in California is...well anything and everything. There is snow in the hills, it gets up to 130 in the desert, the valley sees everything from 20-110, the bay is pretty mild. Whatever weather you want, we have it. I have never been in humidity like in Georgia though, unless you count football practice over a moist field in 100 degree weather. Anyways, I have driven to the Bay for many events (especially Debra's BBQ). I am going to Oakland Saturday night actually. We also have some of the best twisy roads in the nation right outside the bay area, so you could join us for twisty days. I took highway 1 this summer from San Jose all the way down the coast. I guess what I am trying to get at is there are lots of great things about the state in general whether I like the bay or not. Come check it out.
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