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Number of kids and Bay Area

January 7th, 2010 · 7 Comments

If you’re married, how many kids have you had so far? Do you plan to have more?

If you plan to have kids, how many kids do you plan to have?

I lived in the bay area for a long time. Most of my friends and coworkers have one or two kids. Very few of them have three or more kids.

I had a "cultural shock" after I moved to Seattle. It’s not uncommon to meet young or middle-aged couples who have three, four, or even five kids.

I met a lot more stay-home mothers in Seattle. I knew very few stay-home mothers in the bay area. Some of them took one or two years off, but most of them eventually go back to work because they need duel income to pay for their mortgage. I saw a pattern:

  • Parents want to buy a house in a good school district so that their kids can get good education. Both parents have to work really hard to afford the mortgage. In areas such as Cupertino or Palo Alto, you cannot really buy much with $1 million.
  • Because both parents are working, they have to pay for child care expenses for two kids in addition to the expensive mortgage, which cause more pressure to parents to make more money.
  • Parents work so hard that they don’t really have time to make love and care for more kids
  • Parent decides that they can have only one or two kids.

If you don’t have kids yet, I think you should give some thoughts to this question. If you like kids and plan to have several kids, you should pick a place that is conducive for raising multiple kids. The bay area is probably not the right place for you.

Tags: Work/Life Balance

7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 TedHoward // Jan 8, 2010 at 1:55 am

    On top of that, some professions are paid less in the Bay Area because it is seen as a desirable place to live. UCSF attending physicians are paid very low salaries; some make half what they could make in Seattle. Since moving to SF, I have asked many people who grew up here how people afford to live here. The consistent answer is simply “There are a lot of rich people in San Francisco.”

  • 2 GeekMBA360 // Jan 8, 2010 at 12:11 pm

    Wow. I guess doctors will get their “brand name” experience at UCSF, and then move to other parts of the country for better pay.

    I think in addition to the number of rich people in San Francisco, some people made the “wise choice” to purchase house early on. For example, when I graduated from Cal in 1997, I knew people who used a credit card to make an $10K or $20K down payment to purchase a condo in Emeryvile, CA. The house was sold around $170K at the time. The problem is that the housing price has increased much faster than wage/salary.

  • 3 TedHoward // Jan 8, 2010 at 12:15 pm

    Buying SF real estate at good times is another oddity.
    Property taxes only adjust on a sale or 'complete rebuild'. This means that the multimillion dollar house up the block from me is probably paying property taxes on a house valued before 1950. The family (families?) living there are popular with the police and … do not fit in with their neighbors. The 'reubild' clause means you see homes 'partially rebuilt' by tearing them down to literally a dozen 2×4's, repouring the foundation, and rebuilding the entire house. The owners will still be paying low property taxes on their brand new home.

  • 4 GeekMBA360 // Jan 8, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    Yeah, the whole property tax law in California doesn't make sense to me. I wonder if they will change it any time soon now the state of California is basically bankrupted! 🙂

  • 5 GeekMBA360 // Jan 8, 2010 at 5:11 pm

    Wow. I guess doctors will get their “brand name” experience at UCSF, and then move to other parts of the country for better pay.

    I think in addition to the number of rich people in San Francisco, some people made the “wise choice” to purchase house early on. For example, when I graduated from Cal in 1997, I knew people who used a credit card to make an $10K or $20K down payment to purchase a condo in Emeryvile, CA. The house was sold around $170K at the time. The problem is that the housing price has increased much faster than wage/salary.

  • 6 TedHoward // Jan 8, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    Buying SF real estate at good times is another oddity.
    Property taxes only adjust on a sale or 'complete rebuild'. This means that the multimillion dollar house up the block from me is probably paying property taxes on a house valued before 1950. The family (families?) living there are popular with the police and … do not fit in with their neighbors. The 'reubild' clause means you see homes 'partially rebuilt' by tearing them down to literally a dozen 2×4's, repouring the foundation, and rebuilding the entire house. The owners will still be paying low property taxes on their brand new home.

  • 7 GeekMBA360 // Jan 8, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    Yeah, the whole property tax law in California doesn't make sense to me. I wonder if they will change it any time soon now the state of California is basically bankrupted! 🙂

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