IT BEGINS WITH HOUSING, OF COURSE
There is no way to sugarcoat the core reason that housing and property costs are far lower than in parts of the country that were not rocked by the era of factory closings. It was painful, but for cities that hung on and sought alternate paths, it was clear that plummeting property costs would eventually be a springboard to attracting new residents and a new era of opportunity. That era has begun and it gives you a variety of alternatives. The financial benefit of saving a meaningful amount on both housing cost and mortgage payments is game-changing.
HOW IS COST OF LIVING CULTURAL?
In simplest terms, it is expensive to worry about impressing your neighbor, and there are cities all across the country where people will pay an extra hundred bucks for the trendiest logo on an eight-your-old kid's tennis shoes or an extra $50,000 for a hood ornament.
A COMMON-SENSE PLACE
On its wealthiest day, Union City people did not value glitz and glamour above work ethic and human qualities. We didn't regret the lack of private country clubs having annual dues that were half the annual salary of a working family. We taught our kids that they were as good as any other kid in town but no better.
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