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  1. #1
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    OT - Jobs in Bellingham

    Hi,
    I've been living with my wife and two kids here in Tempe, AZ for most of my life. My wife has a job offer at Western Washington University, but I will need to find work. Anyone know how the job market is in Bellingham? I've been in mortgage compliance risk management for 10 years at Wells Fargo.
    Also,
    How are the winters there? Summers? I've heard so many great things about the riding there. Also heard about the recent trail closure issue.
    Just trying to get a feel for the place.
    All opinions are welcome!
    Thanks for your time.

  2. #2
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    Do it!

    The job thing may be tough but you'll never regret the move. Anything you can do to get out of Tempe. Night and day as far as quality of life,people, riding, nature, etc.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Largextracheese View Post
    The job thing may be tough but you'll never regret the move. Anything you can do to get out of Tempe. Night and day as far as quality of life,people, riding, nature, etc.
    That's encouraging! I know I'll love the place. Time is the issue. We have to decide by monday. We got a few months before $ runs out. I'll need to find something soon.

  4. #4
    gravity fighter
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    We moved here six years ago. I love it here. My wife does not.

    The quality of life in B'Ham is outstanding if you are into the outdoors and can handle the wet weather and dark winter. 50 degrees and partly sunny here is considered a REALLY nice day. You will be fine because once you start riding the (awesome) trails, you don't care about the weather so much.
    There are some good restaurants and brewery's/bars/live music being a college town. Plus you have Vancouver/Seattle within easy "day trip" distance for world class food, shopping etc...

    It's the family that you have to worry about. My wife is constantly complaining about the wet/cold weather and is ready to move back to the sunshine. I'm not trying to be a downer, but the weather change from AZ will be drastic and it's the number one thing people ***** about (job market is #2)

    If you can transfer in with your company (I'm a lowly retail manager, but it worked for me) you will at least get a foothold here. Just be ready for a pay cut.

    Again, not trying to be a downer. It is a GREAT place to live and ride, but I always warn people about the lack of sunshine. Of course when the weather is nice, it's amazingly beautiful here!

    Feel free to PM me if you have any other questions

  5. #5
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    I've lived in AZ and Bellingham. In my opinion, AZ weather is great 9 months out of the year, Bellingham weather is pretty bad 8 months out of the year. I've spent most my life on the rainy side, but since moved to the dry side and have no intention of returning to the gray. Bellingham is a great town, I still visit often, and it has the best summers of anywhere I've lived, but just be aware that the weather isn't for everyone.

  6. #6
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    Thanks for the thoughtful responses.

  7. #7
    Just roll it......
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    As others have said, weather and employment are the two things you need to consider most. If you're from AZ and that's what you're used to, then I think it could be a major shock to your system.

    Riding is pretty much year round and pretty good (and always getting better) + proximity to Vancouver/Whistler is as good as it gets for living in the states. Mt. Baker is about 1:30 away which is another bonus and helps keep you sane in the REALLY wet/dark times of the winter.

    If you're an intelligent/flexible person and can apply your skills to other fields, then that might open up some employment options for you.

    EB

  8. #8
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    The weather here is shitty, you'll hate it, so will your lady!! You'd be better off looking in Eastern Oregon, where weather is warmer, still very outdoor oriented. Job market won't be worth a dam but it the same here too. But really its all about peace of mind, if I had to do it all over again, I'd be moving to Eastern Oregon near Bend.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by OleGrayHair View Post
    The weather here is shitty, you'll hate it, so will your lady!! You'd be better off looking in Eastern Oregon, where weather is warmer, still very outdoor oriented. Job market won't be worth a dam but it the same here too. But really its all about peace of mind, if I had to do it all over again, I'd be moving to Eastern Oregon near Bend.
    Ya for real , Bellingham especially has some of the worst
    weather of all western Wa.
    Good call on East Oregon.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by OleGrayHair View Post
    if I had to do it all over again, I'd be moving to Eastern Oregon near Bend.

    I've been saying this for years. Bend has less jobs than Bellingham, but if i had work there I would move in a sec.
    The outdoor rec. in Bellingham is great, everything else comes up short.

    The MTB trails are good, you can ride year round ,and you can ride to the trailhead.

  11. #11
    gravity fighter
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    Oh, and in case we forgot to mention it, the weather here sucks

    Hey OP, did we scare you off with the truth?

  12. #12
    Just roll it......
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    It's probably worth noting that we've come off our second crazy wet winter in a row. Even die-hards were b!tching about our weather this year (myself included).

    While the 260 days (or whatever) of sunshine a year in Bend would be amazing, there are three things that aren't great about Bend for me. 1. Jobs suck other than service industry 2. A lot of the trails are snowed over in the winter. and 3. I'd get pretty bored of the trails after a while. I know COTA does an amazing job and there is way more diversity these days with stuff like ODP, The Lair, V 2 Whoops and Cline Butte, but I'd miss the tech stuff that we have around here - not to mention trails worthy of owning a DH bike.

    On the flips side, you can get great deals on McMansions in Bend these days!

    EB

  13. #13
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    Did you take the plunge?

    tmarkos, if you guys decided to pull the trigger and make the move, I'd be happy to show you the trails around here. Something of a newbie myself to B'ham, but I'd be glad to show you what I know, as well as give you whatever winter survival tactics we learned after moving here from sunnier climes. Good luck whatever you decide,

    E

  14. #14
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    I'm just going to echo that the weather sucks...if it weren't for employment stability and the sunken value of my home I would be off to greener....no....sunnier pastures for sure.

  15. #15
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    I suggest you visit to see what the weather/trails/town is like. My girlfriend and I visited Bellingham before we decided to move here. It was December, rainy, cloudy, dark and awesome! The trails were enough to convince us.

    I'm not going to lie though, it is hard to find jobs out here. EB is right though. If you're intelligent/flexible, then you will probably have a good chance on finding a job. Just be patient. It'll all work out in the end
    "Bound to cover just a little more ground"

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by playdead View Post
    I suggest you visit to see what the weather/trails/town is like. My girlfriend and I visited Bellingham before we decided to move here. It was December, rainy, cloudy, dark and awesome! The trails were enough to convince us.

    I'm not going to lie though, it is hard to find jobs out here. EB is right though. If you're intelligent/flexible, then you will probably have a good chance on finding a job. Just be patient. It'll all work out in the end


    Yea, if your lucky you may get 12 or even 15 bucks an hour.

  17. #17
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    Yes, making $12-$15 an hour in Bellingham would be considered high-living. The strange thing you notice in this town is that there are a few rather large upper-middleclass neighborhoods that at a glance would give the impression that there are ways to make money, but by-in-large the wealthy in Bellingham brought their money with them, they didn't earn in here.

    The trails are indeed good even if keeping them seems a losing battle at times.

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