Choosing an Offer. Help!

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Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 18, 2010 12:32 pm

So I currently have two offers pending, with one more possible. I'm originally from southeastern Michigan, and my girlfriend is from northeastern Ohio. We both would like to be close(ish) to our families. Here are my choices in terms of full time employment:

Firm #1: Medium-Large Chicago firm, primarily transactional/corporate. 145K/yr (2500 wk/summer). 1850 billables (actual not just stated). Decent partnership prospects. Out of debt in 4-10 years.

Firm #2: Large (relative) Western Michigan firm, strong regional presence. 100K/yr (1750 wk/summer). 1700 billables (generally about 2000 worked). Great partnership prospects. Out of debt in 7-15 years.

With the CoL adjustments, income is still about 5-20K greater at the Chicago firm. For those that don't know, this part of Michigan is doing well economically and is not dependent on the auto industry like Detroit. I am trying to way the pros and cons right now, but I would like some more opinions. Basically my thinking do far is this: Chicago would be great for a few years, but long term I would not want to raise my (theoretical) children there, and the commute from the Chi suburbs is soul crushing. Yes it would be fun while young and I could get out of debt quicker, but is it worth sacrificing substantial time with my/her parents and depriving them of a meaningful relationship with their (theoretical) grand kids? On the other hand, I will certainly have to watch my budget in West MI. In terms of "balla millionaire" status, probably talking closer to 50 than 40. But housing is super cheap, and Grand Rapids is about as cool of a small city as one can find, and its growing fast. Still far from her parents, but much closer to mine.

Thoughts, opinion, analysis welcome.

Also, if anyone knows the typical salary scale increases for 100K starters I would appreciate it.

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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 18, 2010 12:58 pm

bump

toolfan
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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby toolfan » Mon Oct 18, 2010 12:59 pm

Chicago.

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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 18, 2010 1:03 pm

toolfan wrote:Chicago.


A+ for the conclusion. F for the reasoning. Care to elaborate for half credit?

Cestjustemoi
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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Cestjustemoi » Mon Oct 18, 2010 1:07 pm

Why would anyone live in western michigan over Chicago....go Chicago

Futuretense
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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Futuretense » Mon Oct 18, 2010 1:08 pm

Go to Michigan and have a good life. It is much, much cheaper to live there, and less stress, too.

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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 18, 2010 1:37 pm

Cestjustemoi wrote:Why would anyone live in western michigan over Chicago....go Chicago


I agree in the short term when I'm living in Lincoln Park and have a dual income/no kids, but I've seen life taking the Metra from the North everyday and I certainly don't want my long term goal to be a high rise condo. I guess I am just trying to think long term.

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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 18, 2010 1:44 pm

Grand Rapids... I am a CCN student looking to go out that way... for whatever reason the firms I apply to don't think I am serious. Did you mention family in the interviews?

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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 18, 2010 5:38 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Cestjustemoi wrote:Why would anyone live in western michigan over Chicago....go Chicago


I agree in the short term when I'm living in Lincoln Park and have a dual income/no kids, but I've seen life taking the Metra from the North everyday and I certainly don't want my long term goal to be a high rise condo. I guess I am just trying to think long term.


You are thinking long term too quickly.

This is your girlfriend, not your fiancee or wife. Planning for kids at this point is putting the cart way before the horse (hopefully -- from a logistical, not a moral standpoint). You can move from one market to another. Where you summer is not going to determine where you retire from.

As for salary, starting at $100k in MI, you are probably looking at raises of less than $5k per year. You'll probably be at about $110-120k in Grand Rapids 5 years out. In Chicago you'd be making about $190-200 5 years out.

Chicago is not that far from Grand Rapids. You will have plenty of time for the suburban lifestyle. Stretch a bit -- enjoy the city while you can and then decide what kind of family life you want. It may or may not be in Grand Rapids. It would be a shame to lock yourself in now.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Mon Oct 18, 2010 5:41 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Anonymous User
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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 18, 2010 5:40 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Grand Rapids... I am a CCN student looking to go out that way... for whatever reason the firms I apply to don't think I am serious. Did you mention family in the interviews?


Did you give them any reason to think you were serious? You have to sell yourself hard in small markets. They have too few SA spots to give one up to someone who's biding time until something better comes along.

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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Oct 18, 2010 6:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Grand Rapids... I am a CCN student looking to go out that way... for whatever reason the firms I apply to don't think I am serious. Did you mention family in the interviews?


Did you give them any reason to think you were serious? You have to sell yourself hard in small markets. They have too few SA spots to give one up to someone who's biding time until something better comes along.


OP here... +1. I definitely had to sell my interest in that part of the state. Most of the firms in the region were naturally suspicious of top ranked schools applicants, but in the end this is where they end up drawing most of their talent from. If you have a good reason to be there, its obviously an obstacle you can overcome.

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Re: Choosing an Offer. Help!

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Oct 22, 2010 8:34 am

Bumping for more consideration. I ran my numbers, and at the Michigan I'm looking at living (for 2) off of about 50K after tax on a ten year repayment plan. Chicago would also be 50K, but closer to 3 1/2 to 4 years until full repayment.




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