Author Topic: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley  (Read 3072 times)

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Offline Rick Law

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Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« on: June 27, 2018, 06:39:36 pm »
Well, getting a job from Apple, Google, Facebook, etc with six figure income seem sweet, but finding a place to live would be sweating time...

Note: So as to avoid this to seem misleading, please note Apple and Google are in Santa Clara County, they are neighbor to the counties cited in the article.  Very close neighbors but not in them.  Only Facebook is inside one the three cited counties (San Mateo county).

Article "HUD: $117,000 Now ‘Low-Income’ In 3 Bay Area Counties" CBS news, (San Francisco) Bay Area, June 26, 2018

"Remember when a six-figure salary meant you had a really good job? In three Bay Area counties, San Francisco, San Mateo and Marin, if you make below $117,400, you’re officially poor.
...
According to the latest survey by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the median income in those three counties tops the entire country, and is so high that households making $117,000 would actually qualify to live in low-income housing projects.
...
...landed a well-paying job, but is only able to afford a one-bedroom apartment and will need to find a roommate soon.
‘People working at Starbucks, where do they live? You know, how are they able to do it?’
...
https://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2018/06/26/hud-117000-low-income-san-mateo-san-francisco-marin/

Article: "Several Google employees say they've lived in the company parking lot — here's why they did it", Business Insider, 2015

"A 23-year-old Google software engineer named Brandon has been living in a truck in the company parking lot for the past five months to save on rent...
...
Technically, you weren't supposed to live at the office, but people got around that by living in their cars in the parking lot of the office or the Shoreline parking lot
...
http://www.businessinsider.com/why-google-employees-live-in-the-parking-lot-2015-10

 

Offline BrianHG

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2018, 07:02:48 pm »
I actually just saw that report + one with the concerns over the lower income workers, like security guards and secretaries and janitors.  They can even afford to rent a single bedroom, let alone be able to do much else without at least 3 jobs.  (I believe it was a docu on VICE news)  These mega corps have raised the price of living in the area so high, that if I were to start my company out in the area, I would have to pay department heads in the neighborhood of 200k$ just so they can afford a 1 bedroom apartment, car, food, and some basic necessities.  Paying programmers at the 125K-150K region would just make ends meet for them unless they have shared accommodations with a partner with a similar salary.  Anyone under 100k would be living in my parking lot...

It's like I would have to get a small apartment building with ground office floor, lower the salaries, but offer free living accommodations for employees, or, at least a reasonable half priced rent for employees.
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Offline The Soulman

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2018, 07:12:44 pm »
I have to ask, are there any benefits for having your company in such region?
Especially for software companies?
 

Online bd139

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2018, 07:19:54 pm »
I have to ask, are there any benefits for having your company in such region?
Especially for software companies?

No none at all other than status among other tech companies.

It’s a bubble and it’s going to burst. 

I’ve run teams distributed world wide.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2018, 07:23:04 pm »
I have to wonder why anyone would even take a job like secretary or janitor in that area unless it paid grossly inflated wages relative to more reasonable regions. Jobs like that are available in areas with much lower cost of living. The bay area is nice, but it's not *that* nice.
 

Offline CopperCone

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2018, 07:23:35 pm »
well a big benefit for your employees is that they are tempted to jump ship to another almost identical company whenever they get pissed at your management and they drive by fifteen similar locations on the way to work, so you need to hire ferocious lawyers to keep those chains attached (management control is not possible because unlike the technical employees, which have like a bit of specificity, the managers you can probably relocate on the fly daily and have them not notice unless the color of the cubicals are different, and even then they might just think they are on the wrong floor not a different company)

I wonder how that whole ecosystem functions, is there even a clear chain of command in the individual companies or do they belong to a group consciousness based on employment density alone. Like ultra high mutual inductance between corporations. Can you actually lose your job there unless your an unfortunate physicist? Normally the housing relocation would at least offer some kind of inconvenience, but its really bizarre there.

I think that's part of the reason they have crazy ass benefits in those places, game rooms, etc... so you at least stay in the place with the same access card if you like it.

Its like a union.. but everyone is in the union, even the CEO's. An invisible union. But despite those great benefits you have the second law of thermodynamics making the housing market go crazy. So some how realtors and tax men are receiving the union dues.   :-//

Now with the increased use of internet labor distribution living there is eventually going to become like owning a taxi medallion if you are doing something unrelated to hardware testing/finishing (someone elsewhere can make the base schematics probably). Will it be a gradual decay or a collapse though?
« Last Edit: June 27, 2018, 07:44:26 pm by CopperCone »
 

Offline wraper

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2018, 07:29:09 pm »
I have to ask, are there any benefits for having your company in such region?
Especially for software companies?
You have a lot of specialists available in different areas you may need. The downside is, being there is very expensive. Both for employees and companies. Also there are a lot of investors and companies you may need to work with.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sand_Hill_Road
« Last Edit: June 27, 2018, 07:32:04 pm by wraper »
 

Offline BrianHG

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2018, 07:52:42 pm »

__________
BrianHG.
 

Offline Rick Law

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2018, 08:14:39 pm »
I actually just saw that report + one with the concerns over the lower income workers, like security guards and secretaries and janitors.  They can even afford to rent a single bedroom, let alone be able to do much else without at least 3 jobs.  (I believe it was a docu on VICE news)  These mega corps have raised the price of living in the area so high, that if I were to start my company out in the area, I would have to pay department heads in the neighborhood of 200k$ just so they can afford a 1 bedroom apartment, car, food, and some basic necessities.  Paying programmers at the 125K-150K region would just make ends meet for them unless they have shared accommodations with a partner with a similar salary.  Anyone under 100k would be living in my parking lot...

It's like I would have to get a small apartment building with ground office floor, lower the salaries, but offer free living accommodations for employees, or, at least a reasonable half priced rent for employees.

That cost is unbearable by the average is because decision makers don't have to live with the impact of their decisions.  At least that is the conclusion of Dr. Victor Davis Hanson. (Senior Fellow in classics and military history at Stanford University's Hoover Institution)

VDH (Victor Davis Hanson) apart from being a historian, is also a farmer.  He lives in his farm house (5th generation in the same house).  So he commutes from average folk's area to the "ivory tower" and sees the elites vs average more than most ivory tower dwellers.

I have to wonder why anyone would even take a job like secretary or janitor in that area unless it paid grossly inflated wages relative to more reasonable regions. Jobs like that are available in areas with much lower cost of living. The bay area is nice, but it's not *that* nice.

VDH actually thinks the area is nice, very nice.  Sitting in his Stanford University office, year round temperature ~70F, never need to turn on the AC or the heat.  So decision makers (or academia) think they can increase the cost of electricity to X whereas poor folks (in his words) goes to Walmart just to be in air-conditioned environment to avoid the heat.

In his view, California now is a Medieval society.
http://victorhanson.com/wordpress/beautifully-medieval-california/

 
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Offline ataradov

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #9 on: June 27, 2018, 08:21:56 pm »
By living in a van for a couple of years, you can make enough money to buy a house some place less stupid.
Alex
 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2018, 12:14:02 am »
I have to ask, are there any benefits for having your company in such region?
Especially for software companies?

Stanford, cross-pollination, lots of talent in a small area and so on.  The companies aren't there for giggles, they NEED to be there.  All the brains of technology in one small area.  Synergy!

The employees will take the view that they don't want to relocate to some one company town in Texas, New Mexico or Colorado.  They can change jobs by just driving in the wrong parking lot in the morning and get a raise for doing it!

I worked there from 1976 until I retired in 2003 so nearly 30 years.  About 10 years in I moved to the Central Valley - about 60 miles from where I worked.  Not a bad commute in the early years - about an hour.  It sucked as the Central Valley became the default bedroom community for Silicon Valley.  As far out as Stockton (90 miles), people that live there are commuting to the Bay Area.  Now I read that they are commuting from Sacramento!

Those articles are all biased, every one written with an agenda.  Of course entry level workers can't afford to live in the prime locations where a shack sells for a couple of million.  They just need to commute from further out.

It doesn't pay to get in a bidding war with people willing to pay $2 million for a post war tract house:
https://sf.curbed.com/2018/3/2/17073100/silicon-valley-house-home-sunnyvale-record-price-crisis

It also doesn't pay to drop out of college.  There are some good paying jobs for graduates and post-graduates as long as the degrees are in STEM.  Two such people, both with good paying jobs, will do just fine.  They're known as DINKS - Dual Income No Kids.  They can party hearty knowing their property values are going up, regardless of how much they paid.

Until the next housing crisis...


« Last Edit: June 28, 2018, 12:17:35 am by rstofer »
 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2018, 12:29:47 am »
Now with the increased use of internet labor distribution living there is eventually going to become like owning a taxi medallion if you are doing something unrelated to hardware testing/finishing (someone elsewhere can make the base schematics probably). Will it be a gradual decay or a collapse though?

If that were true, all of the programmers would be working from home in their jammies.  I assure you, that isn't the case.  Look at the size of the new Apple campus, Microsoft has a campus, so do hundreds of other companies.  All that square footage is filled with people - including programmers.

Team projects don't benefit from mixed locations.  More gets done in the cafeteria over coffee than could ever be done over Skype or any other collaborative system.
 

Offline CatalinaWOW

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2018, 05:47:51 am »
There are many benefits to the Bay Area.  In addition to others mentioned there is excellent air transport to the rest of the world, among the best in US access to Asian sources for HW, parts and talent, and easy access to a variety of recreation from ocean sports to skiing in the Sierras.

But the drawbacks are piling up.  Longer commutes to lower cost areas was one adaption that made it bearable, but that is reaching its limits.  While I have known people who do several hour commutes each way to work, it is no way to live and most do not last long doing it.  Grandfathering, works in California because of Prop 13.  Much of the support population bought decades ago when prices were lower and can afford to stay because taxes don't go up if they don't sell.  But those folks are aging out or cashing out and the new set point isn't working too well.

Many companies are moving part or all of the their operations to lower cost areas.  Either near other, not so bloated areas or within easy travel distance of the core operation in Silicon Valley.  The long term prognosis is probably somewhat like the Boston area, which once had a somewhat similar reputation and suffered the same kind of pricing problems.  It hasn't gone away, just faded back into the pack sort of gracefully.
 

Offline Kjelt

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2018, 08:21:15 am »
I think it is for a large part the name which is well build up since the 70s but should not be a guarantee for the future. If you start a startup company with a hipster image and product you probably raise millions more from investors than if you start from Camden, New Jersey. Image.....
 

Offline Red Squirrel

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2018, 11:59:47 am »
Personally I would have no interest in working for these big companies, it sounds great and prestigious, but at the end of the day, with a company that big you're just a number and places like silicon valley are super cut throat.  If you're not constantly giving it 150% you're just a nobody.  The salaries are great but costs of living are crazy and you're in a huge city.  Not my idea of living personally.

I work at a NOC making around 80k in a small city where it's more laid back and not really stressful. Not a prestigious job by any means but it pays well and I get to live in a house in northern Ontario where I'm walking distance to real nature and 3-5 minute drive from work.  Would not have it any other way.
 

Online CJay

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2018, 12:47:52 pm »
By living in a van for a couple of years, you can make enough money to buy a *very nice* house some place less stupid.

FTFY
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Online rdl

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2018, 01:26:36 pm »
Obviously, the best job to have in Silicon Valley is "landlord".
 
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Offline CopperCone

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #17 on: June 28, 2018, 01:57:52 pm »
I think living in a van for a few years will result in the need for an expensive private psychologist for a few years.
 
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Online bd139

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #18 on: June 28, 2018, 02:05:11 pm »
Not so sure. I had a maths teacher who lived in a van. With random floozies. And a snake. Haven't worked out if he was a genius or a madman yet.
 

Online CJay

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #19 on: June 28, 2018, 02:15:55 pm »
Genius and madman are not necessarily mutually exclusive...
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Offline schmitt trigger

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #20 on: June 28, 2018, 03:23:03 pm »
I had a very nice offer from National Semiconductor in the early 1990s. The salary offer was great, there was a signing bonus, and I would be working on topics which I was greatly interested in.

However, I was already married, my wife was not very fluent in English so her job prospects were nil, and had two small kids.
Before I signed.......Spreadsheet in hand, I calculated and re-calculated all the expenses and possible solutions to make ends meet. But no matter what I calculated, there were no solutions unless I was willing to go thru significant personal sacrifice as compared to Dallas, where we were living at the time.

Therefore, with the heaviest of hearts, I had to decline the offer.

Why companies set shop there?
As others have mentioned, the incredible talent pool. Synergy. Technical critical mass. Similar to Boston's technical corridor in the 50s and 60s. And similar to what is happening at Shenzhen nowadays.
 

Offline schmitt trigger

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #21 on: June 28, 2018, 03:26:57 pm »
I think living in a van for a few years will result in the need for an expensive private psychologist for a few years.

Reminds me of the late Chris Farley's over-the-top SNL character: "I lived in a van, down by the river".
 

Offline Rick Law

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #22 on: June 28, 2018, 07:10:17 pm »
Obviously, the best job to have in Silicon Valley is "landlord".

Short term only...  too short even to pay off the interest portion of the property mortgage.  You can bet your bottom dollar some SJW would introduce rent control.  Take a look at places like NYC, Philly, or many other older cities.  Owning a rental is a owning a white elephant - nothing but an albatross.

I think companies like Google, Facebook, and Apple; they are almost like a cult because they have their own culture, believes, and ways of live -- and mostly young as least from what is visible.  They should have university-like dormitories for their employees or like the mining companies in the old days.  Google janitors and programmers will be assigned their barracks upon reporting to work.
 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #23 on: June 29, 2018, 12:57:10 am »
The mortgage payment for a $1 million house is about $5000/mo or $60,000 per year.  If the home prices rise at 6% per year, the value is exactly tracking the payments.  And the payments are tax deductible - I think...  I'm not entirely sure what Trump's tax cut does.  I'll find out next April.  Selling a primary residence is not taxable if you have lived in it for two of the last five years but the gains are limited.  In theory, a married couple can take $500k of profit and, as long as they use it to buy another residence, no tax.  Take the profit early and RUN!  Buy a mansion somewhere else and kick back.

The bigger problem is the down payment.  This is typically 20% and $200k is a lot of cash.  The good news is VA loans cover the first $679,650 of the mortgage amount in the Santa Clara area.  So, no down payment on the first $679,650 and 20% of the last $320,350 or about $60k.  That's a lot more manageable.  But you have to be a Vet...

When I moved to the area in '76, I thought new houses in Milpitas (very near the heart of Silicon Valley) for $50k was outrageous.  Duh!

Moving up to the $2 million neighborhood will require a LOT more down payment and the monthly payment will be staggering.  OTOH, if the price goes up by 6% per year, you still make out.  You also run out of the capital gains exclusion sooner so you can get out of Dodge sooner..

As was explained to me when I turned down a $100k house in Santa Clara back around '83, "You need to be more flexible in your thinking!".
 

Offline CopperCone

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #24 on: June 29, 2018, 01:03:07 am »
at least get a trailer. Or a freaking box truck.

Van's are just not designed to live in. High noise levels, reflections, cramped, poor insulation, living on suspension springs.... you can't even stand in the thing. I don't understand how anyone would be in a van for any decent period of time and be mentally OK without being intoxicated/turning to alcoholism. Get done with a stressful 8 hour shift to go relax in a van?? :palm:

Not to mention air conditioning, being in proximity to gas fumes while its running, engine vibrations, it sounds like a recipe to make you go insane. Plus people will piss on it, sit on the bumper, kids might fuck with it, bang on the side walls, steal your tires, cops..

I imagine people getting out of van life need rehabilitation like people getting out of prison

even shitty apartments are bad for you:
https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2013/12/the-health-risks-of-small-apartments/282150/
« Last Edit: June 29, 2018, 01:13:44 am by CopperCone »
 

Offline CatalinaWOW

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #25 on: June 29, 2018, 02:29:34 am »
I'm not going to advocate van living, but you are selecting all of the worst possible conditions.  A similar approach would make living in conventional housing look pretty horrible.  (Maintenance always required, can lose everything in earthquake/fire/flood, stuck with bad neighbors, horrible taxes, crime in some neighborhoods is a problem, noise or smell from a nearby fixed site......)

Many young folk eat out every meal.  No penalty in a van.  If you are out hiking, biking, partying whenever you aren't working the inability to stand up is not a penalty.  If you park in a good place noise, fumes, kids vandalizing and all those other problems go away.  And in much of the Silicon Valley lack of air conditioning isn't an issue.

In my mind the most significant problem with van living is the limited toilet/bathing facilities.  But there are options there also, so it is not like you have to defecate on the street and go without showering.  Those who do that are lazy or otherwise impaired.

It is certainly no worse than living on board a boat, which is an option many people idolize.  It isn't a desirable option for everyone, but certainly not guaranteed to drive someone insane or anti-social.
 

Online bd139

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #26 on: June 29, 2018, 05:48:49 am »
I suspect it’s like the old owning the boat mantra though. The best two events when you own a boat:

1. The day you get it.
2. The day the insurance pays out after it caught fire mysteriously.

I nearly owned a house boat about ten years ago. Something clicked in my head which pointed me to the fact that it’s like owning a trailer on a holiday park with the added bonus it could sink at any moment.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2018, 05:52:15 am by bd139 »
 

Offline nanofrog

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #27 on: June 29, 2018, 07:10:42 am »
If intended for an extended period of time, I'd opt for an RV and park it in an RV park. That way you've electricity, potable water, and facilities to empty the waste tank included in the site fee.
 

Offline Kjelt

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #28 on: June 29, 2018, 08:44:06 am »
Buying a house has its risks.
Here in our country we had a long time that you could 100% mortgage the houseprice, so no downpayment.
The interest rates were compared to today also high like 6%. Average normal houseprice here is around €250000-300000. Since the mortgage was tax deductable it was popular to have a mortgage where you do redeem the loan so you could keep on deducting the tax fully every year.
This means a mortgage of €1200 per month net and €800 bruto after tax which is quite doable.
When the economy plummeted the house prices dropped many people lost their jobs or got worse salaries and it stated to collapse since the banks got nervous. It was not as bad as in the US but still a lot of people got hurt really bad, their house which were bought for 300k forced auctioned at 170k (seen that in my close circel) nothing you could do about it, resulting in a lifetime debt of 130k with nothing to show for.
These were the not so really bad cases some people took a three to five time bigger hit since they gambled to buy a really expensive house and hoped their incime would rise and the prices of the house also.
Today everything has stabilized again with prices returned to before the collapse but young starters here can not afford to buy a house so there is still a lot of tension.
 

Online CJay

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #29 on: June 29, 2018, 09:22:18 am »
I suspect it’s like the old owning the boat mantra though. The best two events when you own a boat:

1. The day you get it.
2. The day the insurance pays out after it caught fire mysteriously.

I nearly owned a house boat about ten years ago. Something clicked in my head which pointed me to the fact that it’s like owning a trailer on a holiday park with the added bonus it could sink at any moment.

Oh I dunno, I know a couple who have owned a houseboat near Henley and lived in it for 30 years or more now, they seem perfectly happy...
M0UAW
 

Online bd139

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #30 on: June 29, 2018, 09:28:21 am »
Those aren't really house boats down there i.e. not narrow boats, widebeams, barges etc. They are top notch houses built on top of large flat hulls :)

Some of them aren't even movable.
 

Online CJay

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #31 on: June 29, 2018, 09:39:00 am »
True, their housboat is larger than my 3 bed Semi-detached and considerably more well appointed.
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Online Yansi

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #32 on: June 29, 2018, 10:38:42 am »
Reading this thread just makes me sad.  :(
 

Offline Jeroen3

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #33 on: June 29, 2018, 10:51:36 am »
Back in the day, the companies initiated building of entire suburbs to house their employees.
However, capitalism struck and this is only rarely initiated by companies anymore.

Example of this is Philipsdorp in Eindhoven (netherlands). Back in 1910 the Philips factory required so many employees, and since people weren't able to commute very far, they build an entire suburb.
But my village also has suburbs built to house employees of the steel company that used to be there.
 

Online CJay

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #34 on: June 29, 2018, 11:10:36 am »
The house I own is one example of that, the entire area was built so workers could live close to the factories, lots of cheaper terrace houses and for the slightly better paid workers, semi detached houses with gardens.

The factories in the area made printing presses, gauges, aero engine parts, grinding wheels and lots of other heavy industrial machined parts, progress means we now have a retail park  >:(
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Online bd139

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #35 on: June 29, 2018, 11:22:39 am »
Further progress suggests you won't have a retail park for long!  :-DD
 

Offline schmitt trigger

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #36 on: June 29, 2018, 02:34:53 pm »
Back in the day, the companies initiated building of entire suburbs to house their employees.


Fordlandia, anyone?
 

Offline ajb

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #37 on: June 29, 2018, 06:26:20 pm »
Back in the day, the companies initiated building of entire suburbs to house their employees.
Unfortunately company towns rarely (never?) turned out to be a great deal for the employees in the end.  A more broadly effective solution is probably to build out effective mass transit that increases your feed-in radius to the central metropolitan area.  Actually that works both ways, because companies can establish themselves on the outlying areas and rely on feed-in from the metro or other suburbs, especially if your transit system provides solid cross connections. 

Unfortunately transit is hard and expensive to get right, and most importantly, requires much longer-term thinking than a 2-6 year political cycle really encourages. 

The bigger problem is the down payment.  This is typically 20% and $200k is a lot of cash. 
20% down is conventional wisdom, but in reality it doesn't make any sense for a lot of people, especially people who are renting will saving up to buy.  Sure, 20% means you save some money on mortgage insurance and interest, but delaying a purchase while you save can cost a lot more than you save.  Using numbers from a more sane market where a house costs $300k, putting 7% down instead of 20% means you pay something like $20k in additional interest and PMI.  But taking, say an extra three years to save up that additional 13% costs you something like $60k in rent, after which you have exactly zero equity to show for it--plus you have to consider the fact that any cash sitting around is constantly losing value due to inflation, and you've lost three years of potential appreciation of a major asset (until the housing bubble bursts again anyway), plus you've locked up a big chunk of money that you could have kept liquid or invested in something with a better return.  In a more expensive market, those numbers all go up, but in silicon valley they're of course going to be just stupid compared to anywhere else.
 

Offline CopperCone

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #38 on: June 29, 2018, 07:08:59 pm »
Back in the day, the companies initiated building of entire suburbs to house their employees.
However, capitalism struck and this is only rarely initiated by companies anymore.

Example of this is Philipsdorp in Eindhoven (netherlands). Back in 1910 the Philips factory required so many employees, and since people weren't able to commute very far, they build an entire suburb.
But my village also has suburbs built to house employees of the steel company that used to be there.

this is what you call a mining town.
 

Offline CopperCone

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #39 on: June 29, 2018, 07:11:11 pm »
I'm not going to advocate van living, but you are selecting all of the worst possible conditions.  A similar approach would make living in conventional housing look pretty horrible.  (Maintenance always required, can lose everything in earthquake/fire/flood, stuck with bad neighbors, horrible taxes, crime in some neighborhoods is a problem, noise or smell from a nearby fixed site......)

Many young folk eat out every meal.  No penalty in a van.  If you are out hiking, biking, partying whenever you aren't working the inability to stand up is not a penalty.  If you park in a good place noise, fumes, kids vandalizing and all those other problems go away.  And in much of the Silicon Valley lack of air conditioning isn't an issue.

In my mind the most significant problem with van living is the limited toilet/bathing facilities.  But there are options there also, so it is not like you have to defecate on the street and go without showering.  Those who do that are lazy or otherwise impaired.

It is certainly no worse than living on board a boat, which is an option many people idolize.  It isn't a desirable option for everyone, but certainly not guaranteed to drive someone insane or anti-social.

I think boats are a bit bigger then vans and their more designed for living in.  A van is designed to transport shit.

When people think of boat living, something the size of a van just does not come to mind. Thats like living in a row boat. A house boat is like a trailer. You would at least need some kind of more advanced van, box truck, airport transport to have some sort of connection to talking to people about living in a boat.

Even a house boat considered small (say 300SQ FEET) is 3-4 times larger then a decent van. I think you have confused a van with a bus. You can't tell me 4 times smaller is the same. And you can have a desalinizer on a boat to supply you fresh water, enough room for pumps to run a shower or a sink, so at least you have the privacy of some plumbing. I don't know how they handle shit.

Plus you can tell coworkers that you have a house boat, its not thing to be ashamed of. Their seen as cool, you can brag about your sea navigation skills, etc. If you start telling your bosses that you live out of a van guess who won't get promotions. It's not socially acceptable unless your like a low tier employee. I don't care what anyone says it will lead to discrimination. People will joke about it. Its one step up from a shopping cart. Even if you brag how much you saved up you will be labled a miserer.

It goes between :

Boat:
 I can sail down this beautiful canal to look at the sunset and sleep in a place you can't go on foot. If its clean around the boat you can even go for an ocean swim in the morning. You are part of a boat community too.

Van:
 I am good at skulking around walmart parking lots and I have gained high knowledge of where the police patrols are most dense. I never shit in the same place twice. The skillset you acquire from van life seems remarkably similar to hobo skills. I don't give a shit but some people are just gonna make this association and you can get socially fucked.

Trailer:
 You can say you don't find the real estate market reasonable but I like living like a normal person.

I think there are serious social, environmental and health hurdles to overcome living in a van. Not to mention you will just be automatically characterized as some kind of junkie, fiend, deviant etc if you live in a van by certain people who certainly have a guiding hand in most companies.

I don't care anyway. Just saying it might be counterproductive to corporate progress, social standing (not social life), psychological health. Also cops will consider you suspicious. If there begin to be weird crime in your area like serial killer, burglar, rapist, you better believe the guy in the van is gonna get some attention. It's just how it is.

I mean the house boat is kinda shady too, but your not quite as mobile and I think people feel more at ease around them then vans. You can't exactly blend in so well. \

And then the last thing you want that your explaining to your employer that you were late  because you had to talk to detectives about a serial rapist. I also think their notorious for drug dealing.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2018, 07:44:28 pm by CopperCone »
 
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Offline Rick Law

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #40 on: June 29, 2018, 07:46:02 pm »
I'm not going to advocate van living, but you are selecting all of the worst possible conditions.  A similar approach would make living in conventional housing look pretty horrible.  (Maintenance always required, can lose everything in earthquake/fire/flood, stuck with bad neighbors, horrible taxes, crime in some neighborhoods is a problem, noise or smell from a nearby fixed site......)

Many young folk eat out every meal.  No penalty in a van.  If you are out hiking, biking, partying whenever you aren't working the inability to stand up is not a penalty.  If you park in a good place noise, fumes, kids vandalizing and all those other problems go away.  And in much of the Silicon Valley lack of air conditioning isn't an issue.

In my mind the most significant problem with van living is the limited toilet/bathing facilities.  But there are options there also, so it is not like you have to defecate on the street and go without showering.  Those who do that are lazy or otherwise impaired.

It is certainly no worse than living on board a boat, which is an option many people idolize.  It isn't a desirable option for everyone, but certainly not guaranteed to drive someone insane or anti-social.

I think boats are a bit bigger then vans and their more designed for living in.  A van is designed to transport shit.

When people think of boat living, something the size of a van just does not come to mind. Thats like living in a row boat. A house boat is like a trailer. You would at least need some kind of more advanced van, box truck, airport transport to have some sort of connection to talking to people about living in a boat.

Even a house boat considered small (say 300SQ FEET) is 3-4 times larger then a decent van. I think you have confused a van with a bus. You can't tell me 4 times smaller is the same. And you can have a desalinizer on a boat to supply you fresh water, enough room for pumps to run a shower or a sink, so at least you have the privacy of some plumbing. I don't know how they handle shit.

With boats, you have to dock it in a marina - that means fee or rent and it wouldn't be cheap in that area.  You can part it at Walmart with RVs and cars.  See this NY Times article, "untold thousands of motorists [are parking there]":
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/14/us/walmart-parking-rv.html

Not only do people like spending the night there, (no joke) they like dying there too:
"growing number of people around the country who drew their last breaths in Walmart parking lots...  ...They include those who are homeless, truckers, immigrants, drug-addled, suicidal or ill..."
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/florida/fl-reg-ap-dead-bodies-brevard-walmart-20180624-story.html
 

Offline schmitt trigger

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #41 on: June 29, 2018, 08:03:33 pm »
CopperCone;
Your description about Van life is hilarious, but sadly very true.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2018, 08:05:14 pm by schmitt trigger »
 

Offline NiHaoMike

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #42 on: June 29, 2018, 08:22:50 pm »
Didn't Simone Giertz used to live on a boat?

There are also a few who live in airplanes!
http://www.airplanehome.com/
I see a huge appeal for those in RF - the cargo versions are especially close to perfect Faraday cages to begin with!
Cryptocurrency has taught me to love math and at the same time be baffled by it.

Cryptocurrency lesson 0: Altcoins and Bitcoin are not the same thing.
 

Offline Seph.b

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #43 on: June 29, 2018, 08:27:39 pm »
I'm not going to advocate van living, but you are selecting all of the worst possible conditions.  A similar approach would make living in conventional housing look pretty horrible.  (Maintenance always required, can lose everything in earthquake/fire/flood, stuck with bad neighbors, horrible taxes, crime in some neighborhoods is a problem, noise or smell from a nearby fixed site......)

Many young folk eat out every meal.  No penalty in a van.  If you are out hiking, biking, partying whenever you aren't working the inability to stand up is not a penalty.  If you park in a good place noise, fumes, kids vandalizing and all those other problems go away.  And in much of the Silicon Valley lack of air conditioning isn't an issue.

In my mind the most significant problem with van living is the limited toilet/bathing facilities.  But there are options there also, so it is not like you have to defecate on the street and go without showering.  Those who do that are lazy or otherwise impaired.

It is certainly no worse than living on board a boat, which is an option many people idolize.  It isn't a desirable option for everyone, but certainly not guaranteed to drive someone insane or anti-social.

I think boats are a bit bigger then vans and their more designed for living in.  A van is designed to transport shit.

When people think of boat living, something the size of a van just does not come to mind. Thats like living in a row boat. A house boat is like a trailer. You would at least need some kind of more advanced van, box truck, airport transport to have some sort of connection to talking to people about living in a boat.

Even a house boat considered small (say 300SQ FEET) is 3-4 times larger then a decent van. I think you have confused a van with a bus. You can't tell me 4 times smaller is the same. And you can have a desalinizer on a boat to supply you fresh water, enough room for pumps to run a shower or a sink, so at least you have the privacy of some plumbing. I don't know how they handle shit.

With boats, you have to dock it in a marina - that means fee or rent and it wouldn't be cheap in that area.  You can part it at Walmart with RVs and cars.  See this NY Times article, "untold thousands of motorists [are parking there]":
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/14/us/walmart-parking-rv.html

Not only do people like spending the night there, (no joke) they like dying there too:
"growing number of people around the country who drew their last breaths in Walmart parking lots...  ...They include those who are homeless, truckers, immigrants, drug-addled, suicidal or ill..."
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/florida/fl-reg-ap-dead-bodies-brevard-walmart-20180624-story.html

In many places house boat moorage is not covered under tenet laws. Because of this many places have huge hookup and disconnect fees, like $30k each huge. It can be very risky financially to live in a house boat. 
 

Offline BrianHG

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #44 on: June 30, 2018, 01:09:43 am »
Didn't Simone Giertz used to live on a boat?

There are also a few who live in airplanes!
http://www.airplanehome.com/
I see a huge appeal for those in RF - the cargo versions are especially close to perfect Faraday cages to begin with!
Close the window flaps on this guy and this one is a perfect Faraday cage:
__________
BrianHG.
 

Offline Mr. Scram

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #45 on: June 30, 2018, 01:19:56 am »
Didn't Simone Giertz used to live on a boat?

There are also a few who live in airplanes!
http://www.airplanehome.com/
I see a huge appeal for those in RF - the cargo versions are especially close to perfect Faraday cages to begin with!
You had to slip one of your internet girls in.  ::) Obsessing over things isn't healthy. Have you considered getting some outside help to deal with it?
 

Offline rstofer

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #46 on: June 30, 2018, 02:22:48 am »
20% down is conventional wisdom, but in reality it doesn't make any sense for a lot of people, especially people who are renting will saving up to buy.

FHA loans could have a down payment of just 3.5% if there are any lenders crazy enough to grant them:
http://www.fhahandbook.com/blog/fha-down-payments-definitive-guide/

The borrower's credit score needs to be pretty spectacular and even though we met those requirements, no loans were offered with less than a conventional down payment.  This was a couple of years ago.  No bid deal, I just reused my VA Loan and made the 20% down payment on the portion that wasn't guaranteed by the VA.  Lenders LOVE to underwrite VA loan!  They are protected from loss on the covered amount.

The loan market is loosening up again.  'Liar Loans' are making a comeback and the next housing crash is just around the corner.

The biggest mistake the .gov made was removing the capital gains tax on short sales.  This allowed people to walk away unscathed and, in my view, prolonged the misery.  They still had jobs, they were just under water on the mortgage.  A couple of years later they would have been in good shape.

As to living on a boat, a 40' sailboat in Alameda at one of the marinas that allows liveaboards isn't a bad way to go.  Jack London Squre is just across the estuary, San Francisco is a short ferry ride away and the commute to Silicon Valley is not all that grim.  I had a 30' sailboat docked there for about 20 years (I have forgotten when I sold it!) and the slip fees would still be under $400.  Phone service and cable TV is available, WiFi is also provided.  My workshop wouldn't fit and my computer room is much larger than the interior of the boat.  I would have had to downsize considerably.  OTOH, sailing SF Bay is a lot of fun!  I always thought of the boat as a hedge against unemployment.  I could rent out my house for enough to make the mortgage and the slip fees.

Never needed to use my backup plan...

« Last Edit: June 30, 2018, 02:36:23 pm by rstofer »
 

Offline NiHaoMike

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Re: Salary & living in high tech silicon valley
« Reply #47 on: June 30, 2018, 02:58:37 am »
You had to slip one of your internet girls in.  ::) Obsessing over things isn't healthy. Have you considered getting some outside help to deal with it?
Out of the entire list of shows I watch, she's the only one I'm aware of who once lived on a boat. She's also quite famous - in fact, in my list, only one individually-run show has more viewers.

And actually, I prefer girls who know how to make things work. I do acknowledge, however, that making stuff that doesn't work (well) has comedy value.
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