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qhinspect
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Just wondering if anyone on here is from Portland, Oregon or live anywhere around there. It seems every 5 years my wife and I want to live in a different state. I have lived in Indiana the longest due our daughter but she is going to graduating high school early (a month before she turns 17) and we are looking at a few locations such as Portland, OR; Suffolk, VA; Woodland, VA or San Diego, CA. So far Portland, OR is looking good.

Any thoughts on Portland?

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Just wondering if anyone on here is from Portland, Oregon or live anywhere around there. It seems every 5 years my wife and I want to live in a different state. I have lived in Indiana the longest due our daughter but she is going to graduating high school early (a month before she turns 17) and we are looking at a few locations such as Portland, OR; Suffolk, VA; Woodland, VA or San Diego, CA. So far Portland, OR is looking good.

Any thoughts on Portland?

Brandon, Chris, & I are all near Portland. It's a great place. Ninety minutes to the west is the Oregon Coast (The entire coast is public land from the low water mark to the first permanent vegetative growth.) Ninety minutes to the east is the Gorge & Mt. Hood, if you like hiking, windsurfing, snowboarding, skiing, or, my favorite, sitting & drinking in Timberline lodge. The city itself is clean, charming, very safe & stable, bike friendly, & pedestrian friendly. There's a strong sense of civic pride. It's one of the few cities in the country where we tear down freeways to build parks. People who teach urban planning unfailingly use Portland as an example of the "right" way to do it. Oregon's wine country is less than an hour to the southwest. Our Pinot Noir's beat anything from that bulky state to the south.

We've got more bookstores per capita than any other city in the country, headed up by, of course, Powell's City of Books (a bookstore that occupies an entire city block, 4 stories high). It happens to be across the steet from the Henry Weinhard brewery, the largest, but by no means only, brewery in town. (We also have more microbreweries per capita than any other city.)

Great food is everywhere. If you're here in August, you can check out "The Bite," Portland's annual bacchanalia of food & wine. But no matter when you come, check out Voodoo Donuts -- try their bacon maple bars (or one of their X-rated donut shapes), take a Swahili lesson (really), or even get married (they perform legally sanctioned weddings as well as gay weddings which are not, yet, legally sanctioned).

Let's see, what else? Oh yeah, repeat after me, no sales tax. If I want to buy a Heath bar that costs 98 cents, I hand the guy a dollar and he hands me back 2 cents -- cool! Also, you're not *allowed* to pump your own gas here -- no smelly gas hands.

The climate is great. From June to October, it's bright & sunny nearly all the time. We might get a few hot days that peak at over 100 degrees, but mostly it's in the '70s or '80s. Then from mid October to June, it's kind of overcast & drippy most of the time. It rarely rains hard -- most people here don't even own umbrellas -- it just sort of drips. Some people tell me that it's depressing in winter, but I rather like it. The low temps might dip into the teens, but most of the winter it's in the low 40s. We usually see a bit of snow each winter. Just enough to remind you of what it is.

What else do you want to know?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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I knew it ... JK has confirmed it.

He works part-time for the Chamber of Commerce for the State of Oregon!!!

Actually ... his information is spot on. In all the states I've lived in throughout the U.S (I have only done a lot of work in prior lives in Oregon) I've not had the privilege of living in Oregon.

I have a very close friend, who used to work for me (many years past) who, along with his wife, has retired to Joseph, OR.

My wife and I are hoping to get up to see them next year on holiday.

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A friend of mine just got back from living in Portland for a couple of years, he said there are no jobs and that unemployment is REALLY high. I wonder what the housing market is like there? I spent a week in Portland about 10 years ago and I must say, that area and all of the surrounding area is awesome. Good luck in what every you decide to do. Yea, your not "allowed" to pump your own gas in Jersey either....

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Also, you're not *allowed* to pump your own gas here -- no smelly gas hands.

Oh, don't remind me; I had a bad experience with that in 2004.

I was driving down to Vegas for the ITA conference when I stopped at a reststop off of the highway near a tribal casino to get gas.

I didn't know about the Oregon law and tried to swipe my own card to get gas but it wouldn't take. A kid came out of the booth walked over, asked for my card. I pointed out that I'd already swiped it and that I didn't want to record two sales. He said, no problem, because I didn't know his access code my swipe had never gone in. It sounded reasonable so I handed him my card and he swiped it again.

A month later I got a bill for $250 worth of purchases from that rest stop when I'd only spent about $55. I called down there to speak to the manager to make a stink. The manager took down all of my information, assured me that she'd look into it and get back to me. She never did. Next I called the local P.D. to register a theft complaint. They said they didn't have jurisdiction because the station is on tribal land and because it's a disputed credit card charge and not a theft. I pointed out that as an ex-cop I know the difference and that some SOB buying gas and other crap with my credit card is definitely theft. The tweaker on the other end of the line just seemed to get more and more confused. Finally, I called my credit card company and registered a complaint with them. Months went by with no resolution and then one day I got a letter from the credit card company tellling me that they'd investigated the incident and were satisifed that I'd made the entire purchase so I wasn't going to get a credit.

I had to contact them again and raise some more hell about it. In the end, I asked them how the hell I was able to purchase more than 14.7 gallons of gas - since part of the purchase was for more than 30 gallons - when my truck only holds 14.7 gallons. The person on the phone audibly said, "D'oh" and they credited my account back with the disputed charges.

So, anyone travelling south on the interstate from Washington to California, avoid the tribal casino rest stop, whatever it is - 'cuz they've got some slicky boys working there.

Last time I drove through Oregon, I stopped at an ATM, got cash and then stood there and watched him pump the gas and paid cash. I won't be handing my card to any pump jockeys in Oregon again.

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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I was in Atlantic City last month and had my fuel dispensed by an elderly man that actually washed my wife's side of the windshield three times! He told me it would be better if I waited inside the station, rather than watch him pump gas and wipe windshields. Paid cash and proceeded to Philly!

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[Also, you're not *allowed* to pump your own gas here -- no smelly gas hands.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

You are not allowed to pump gas? I just have to ask why?

You might spill some. Pumping gas is a highly skilled profession that takes several minutes of training. There's no way to certify the general public. So in the interest of civic welfare, gas can only be dispensed by highy trained teenagers sporting lots of piercings, tats, & 'tude.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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. . . So, anyone travelling south on the interstate from Washington to California, avoid the tribal casino rest stop, whatever it is - 'cuz they've got some slicky boys working there.. . .

They're just catching up from that deal where we got Manhattan for $24 worth of trinkets.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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But no matter when you come, check out Voodoo Donuts -- try their bacon maple bars (or one of their X-rated donut shapes), take a Swahili lesson (really), or even get married (they perform legally sanctioned weddings as well as gay weddings which are not, yet, legally sanctioned).

I saw that place on diners drive ins and dives on the food channel.

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Any thoughts on Portland?

Any specific questions?

After reading Jim's post, I've decided I want to keep living here.

I wouldn't move to where they are my competition!

Bill,

You wouldn't know what to do with yourself here. Shoot, a house built in 1895 is friggin ancient around these parts. I don't even need all of my fingers and toes to count how many pre- 1900's homes I've inspected over the years.

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I lived in the Seattle area for a couple of years out of high school. I hated it there. People complain about Portland getting a little dreary in the rainy season, Seattle is far worse, and the traffic? I'd rather be in LA any day of the week.

I lived on Long Island, NY, for a couple of years; I had a great time over there and playing in NYC.

But, given the chance to move anywhere else, I would rather stay right here in Oregon, even with our high taxes and high unemployment.

Chris, Oregon

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Thanks for the info. My wife and I just started collecting info about Portland. Beaverton looks interesting to us. There is a 2 bedroom apt that looks good for $1100 a month which is comparable around here. We will be paying either 7% or 9% in taxes which isn't much different than around here (not including the other taxes we have to pay). It looks like Portland's cost of living can range from $58,000 to $65,000. We get the winter blues around here due to the cold and snow so we might feel the same in Portland but feeling about 20 to 30 degrees warmer. We noticed the summers are not as hot and from the pictures I've seen, it does look beautiful.

The economy over there is something more we have to look into. My wife is a Paralegal and I would be trying to get a job doing heating and cooling - something I would be doing now if I wasn't a home inspector.

What is the primary way of heating and cooling a house in that area?

And is there any areas we shouldn't be thinking about moving to?

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What is the primary way of heating and cooling a house in that area?

It depends on the area. I mostly see gas these days and electric second. There's also oil and propane. I rarely see boilers or hydronic heating systems in my neck of the woods.

And is there any areas we shouldn't be thinking about moving to?

It depends again on what you like to do and whether you have kids. Don't move out by Jim, he lives out in the boonies.

Chris, Oregon

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Here's the thing about Portland weather.......if you don't like it, drive east an hour, and get out around Roosevelt or Arlington. Better yet, go for the mountains out in the NE corner of Oregon, about a 5 hour drive.

Climb up into the hills of Wallowa or Umatilla National Forests, stay awhile. It's out there.

When I was looking for real fun, I'd head down to Manzanita, and catch some waves. This was before folks "discovered" it in the 90's.

Lots of space in Oregon.

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