The Salt Lake City area of Utah may be among the fastest growing metropolitan areas in the country, but southern states are seeing their fair share of new residents. Many a Northeast refugee seeking a better life finds it in the Carolinas, Florida, Texas, or Arizona.
Some are moving out of the Northeast due to the politics. Others are looking for nicer weather. Still others have given up on limited job prospects in dense urban environments with little to offer. This writer left the Northeast some eight years ago for a number of different reasons. There has been no looking back.
The South isn’t for everyone. Plenty of people move here and decide they don’t like it. That’s fine. Different strokes for different folks, as they say. But if you are like me, you’ll regret not moving to the south years ago. In light of that, here are five things I bet you will not miss from the Northeast:
1. The Weather
I never knew just what a weather bubble the Northeast was under until I moved away. Where I used to live, even clear summer days were dulled by a slight haze. Now I know what truly blue skies look like. And where I now live hasn’t seen snow in decades. In fact, snow is a once-in-a-century event here. I sure don’t miss the weather I grew up with.
2. Winter Clothes
Along those same lines, you probably won’t miss your winter clothes. I sure don’t miss my heavy overcoat and winter boots. That said, we do get some pretty intense rain here. A good pair of shoe covers from GC Tech are enough to keep my feet dry and warm when necessary. A light fleece is enough for cool January days.
3. The Taxes
For some reason that still doesn’t make sense eight years later, taxes in the Northeast are among the highest in the nation. We discovered shortly after moving here that our cost-of-living is cheaper. Generally lower taxes are a big part of it. Everything from sales to property taxes are lower where we now live, as compared to where we used to live.
I am also fortunate enough to live in a state with no income tax. As a freelancer, that’s big. My tax bill shrunk considerably when I left the Northeast. I will gladly keep a pair of shoe covers and a light fleece in my closet if that means escaping high taxes.
4. The Busyness
I never realized just how busy people in the Northeast are until I moved south. Everything was go, go, go. Down south, not so much. People are much more laid-back and relaxed. It might take a crew 10 hours to install a carpet that could have been laid in two hours up north, but that’s just the way we roll. It’s really not so bad. Get rid of the busyness and life actually becomes a lot more enjoyable.
5. The Attitude
We have had to adapt to a lot of cultural differences since we moved. Perhaps the most shocking of all was the difference in attitudes. In the Northeast, you rarely say hello to strangers. You keep your head down and keep to yourself. In the south, people still smile and greet one another. They have conversations at the cash register. Most people go out of their way to help others, too. It is an entirely different mindset.
Call us what you will, but I am proud to be a Southerner. I have no intention of returning to the Northeast if I can at all avoid it.