On this Queer Money, we compared first, second and third-tier cities for the queer community. Are top-tier queer cities, such as NYC, Chicago and LA, better homes for the queer community than second and third-tier queer cities, such as Pittsburg, Denver and Atlanta?
Queer Cities Video
As they say in show business, “The show must go on!” Unfortunately, in this case our live video feed from Blab.im is “STILL” showing as processing. Thus we do not have any video content available for this week’s Queer Money episode on queer cities. We made a second attempt to record this conversation on Blab.IM and it failed. So, on with the rest of the post.
Queer Money Sponsors
Queer Cities Guest
- Stephan Bontrager is currently the director of Riverlife Public Spaces in Pittsburgh PA. He previously worked for 91.3 WYEP and PULSE – Pittsburgh’s Urban Leadership Service Experience. Stephan lives in Pittsburgh with his husband and daughter. Stephan is originally from Denver CO.
Queer Cities Show Notes
- Top-tier queer cities have the appeal of being a part of something bigger than yourself, offer more arts, culture and entertainment, but it’s easy to get lost and not feel connected to a community.
- 4% of the population in NYC identify as LGBT. Cities such as Atlanta, Salt Lake, Austin have larger per capita LGBT populations: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/salt-lake-city-higher-percentage-lgbt-people-nyc-article-1.2157135
- Over half of Americans can’t afford their homes (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/over-50-of-americans-struggle-with-home-affordability-2014-06-03) and have had to make at least one or more sacrifices to make ends meet (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/americas-most-and-least-affordable-housing-markets-2015-09-16). This makes less expensive cities more appealing.
- Second and third-tier queer cities offer lower cost of living, which can afford us the opportunity to travel to top-tier cities, but can feel suffocating and have fewer career opportunities.
- The difference in money spent on cost of living can be put towards travel, saving for retirement and a higher standard of living.
- Small financial changes can make a huge difference, especially over time: http://www.debtfreeguys.com/2016/01/small-finacial-changes/
- Second and third-tier cities often rank higher in livability because livability quotients takes into account cost of living: http://www.livability.com/best-places/top-100-best-places-to-live/2015.
- Use sites such as PayScale.com and Salary.com. Use Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter to connect with those in your future home to learn more about the scene and the people.
- Be cautious with financing your life. Buying everything, including phones, furniture, housing, etc., on installment plans will cost you unnecessarily: http://www.debtfreeguys.com/2014/11/high-cost-ownerless-society/
Queer Cities Conclusion
While top-tier cities have the appeal of more excitement and opportunity, they can have long-term financial consequences. With social media and dating apps, the globe is much smaller today than even ten years ago. Consider what it is you really want out of life and choose your home accordingly.