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Where to Go?


We canvased north, northeast, and eastern Texas trying to find a city to settle.  The problem is, they were ALL lovely.  Sure, we leaned more toward certain areas but there was no clear winner.  Texas is all around pretty.


My sister told us she was considering a move to Tennessee from Kansas.  Since it’s relatively close to were we are camping, we drove over to meet her there.  We looked at some areas with her but had the same feeling, where on earth do we go??  She won’t move for another 2 ½ years and even then, she’s not entirely positive she’ll move.  As much as I liked Tennessee, I like Texas more.  I don’t want to move to Tennessee only to have her decide to stay in Kansas.


We went back to Texas, frustrated that we can’t seem to make up our minds.


I’ve always picked a spot to live based in the standard ways: School. Family. Job.  I finished school 20 years ago and I don’t have any plans to go back in the near future.  We have no family in Texas or Tennessee (though we do have family in Kansas, hence the general desire to stay in northern Texas).  The job I will likely be taking is remote with annual travel to the California coast.


If it were up to me, I’d find a house on a couple acres on the outside of town and pay cash.  The problem is, my job is remote for now but if I decide to take a more traditional job in the future, I can’t live in the country.  I have a low tolerance for long commutes.  Do I live in the country for now and move if I ever take a different job?  Will it be hard on the kids to be uprooted again?  As an FYI, I grew up in the country on 8 acres.  I’m aware of the work associated with large pieces of property and I know what it’s like driving 20 minutes to the closest grocer.  As a kid, I loved where we lived.  I want that for my kids.


And when is the right time to sell our house?  We’re feeling the pressure to sell as the California market is ridiculously hot right now.  Our house value is the highest it’s ever been.  In our neighborhood, the houses don’t even make it to market.  They sell before they are listed.  It’s always that delicate dance of trying to predict when it will level off/fall or continue to rise.  We bought our house in 2007 thinking the market had cooled not realizing it had 4 more years of cooling left.  Are we selling when we think it’s hit the top not realizing it has years left to climb?  I’m starting to sound like a crazy person!


It’s a weird position to be in but in these times of COVID where more jobs are going remote, I think there will be more people in it.  Here’s my question for you, have you been in this spot?  If so, what did you choose?


  • Reply JP |

    I would definitely move. You never know when the real estate tops will happen but now seems like a good time. More people are leaving California than are moving there, for obvious reasons. Make sure to get to middle and east TN if you are considering it. West TN is flat and Memphis has a lot of crime(I’m from west tn). But Nashville is urban and trendy and east TN is very hilly and scenic.

    • Reply Beks |

      Yes! We discovered that about Memphis when we stopped there for a night! We were super disappointed. Franklin was nice but super expensive. We really liked East Tennessee. We took a day to hike the Smokies. Wow! So beautiful!

      • Reply JP |

        Yes, it didn’t used to be that way. Nashville has become more like Atlanta. Lots of traffic and prices of real estate have gone through the roof. So many people from Chicago and places like that are moving to Nashville since they have no state income tax. It used to be mostly locals 20 years ago.

  • Reply Patti |

    We live and work in the OC, but have purchased our retirement home in Granite Shoals, about an hour from Austin. The Texas Hill Country is beautiful, there’s plenty of water and not so humid as North Texas. Check it out.

  • Reply Reece |

    Sell now! I’d say strike while the iron is hot. Somewhere in NE Texas sounds great; you can be close to a larger town but still afford a decent sized plot of land that your kids can run around on.

  • Reply Cynthia |

    I am in a similar position. We moved to our current state for a job which has now gone remote. We have definitely begun to think about wanting more space and are having thoughts similar to yours. Our big obstacles are medical care as we currently live by one of the best children’s hospitals in the nation and we have a child with a rare disease and, we need reliable internet. We do have friends and a fairly strong community so I keep reminding myself that once we can socialize normally again, that will greatly improve our quality of life. I don’t know what we will end up doing, but I enjoy looking at country homes on Instagram and daydreaming.

  • Reply jax |

    In the spring of 2019 we went to a city a couple hours away for a concert. My partner’s family lives in various suburbs of this city, so while there we visited and explored. We drove through one town because it had a marina and we just bought a boat. We spent a couple hours walking around the town, eating at a restaurant and meeting people. We knew we wanted to move there. We put an offer in on a building (sight unseen but contingent on inspection) three days later. We quit our jobs and moved a couple months later and it continues to be a great decision. I would say keep exploring cities that you think you want to live in. You’ll know what the right one is, even if the logistics are scary.

  • Reply SMD |

    Think about the quality of schools for your kids as well, unless you homeschool, but even then I would think the opportunities to supplement homeschooling would be a factor.

  • Reply Victoria |

    We moved to middle Tennessee about half way between Nashville and Chattanooga. Love the area.

    • Reply JP |

      Nice what town? That’s a great area. Chattanooga is nice and growing. We ended up in Bentonville Arkansas and love it. Ozarks.

  • Reply Jim |

    If you choose to live in a rural area or in a small town, you should check with the availability, reliability, and cost of Internet service in that area – especially since your new job will depend on it.

So, what do you think ?