Tell me about living in Las Vegas

Is it possible to get a job there?
How expensive is housing? 1 Bed apt in a safe area.

How expensive is your electric bill in the summer?

I’m probably moving there in a few weeks. I need to hear some good things.

Paging DMark

Unemployment is at an all time high there. Houses should be cheap; I think it’s the foreclosure capital of the United States right now. Electricity is expensive, and you can no longer build houses with grass because of water shortages.

On the other hand, I love the 110-degree F, 0% humidity a lot more than 80-degree, 100% humidity weather.

I live in Las Vegas. Jobs are hard to get here, I believe we are still number one for the highest unemployment rate. Rents have gotten cheaper here, I live in an 1100 sq. foot, 3 bdrm. 2 full baths apt. and I pay $700 a month. Two years ago I paid $850 for the same apt. This is less than a mile from UNLV in a pretty low rent, urban area but Its pretty safe. You could easily get a one bedroom apt. for $600 unless you need to live in a luxury complex. Electricity is pretty expensive. The summers here are hell, but the rest of the year has really great weather.

Its an expensive, tacky shit-hole for the most part. Mile after mile of strip malls anchored by Marshall’s, TJ Maxx and sub-standard crap like that. They have paved over nearly everything from Railroad Pass to Red Rock to farther north than I even know the name anymore. Its just stupid big now. Concentric rings of the same old crap.

Hot enough in the summer to force you indoors almost 24 hours a day. Cold enough in the winter to… well, winter wasn’t too bad. One of the coldest Thanksgivings I ever spent was in Vegas. Gets kind of exciting when it rains however.

No shortage of entertainment, if you are willing to pay. Very little aimed at the local crowd. The cool places I used to hang have all shut down or gone “California”. Its been almost 20 years since I bailed out of there. Still have a place down there to visit, but its isn’t like it used to be. Still better than California though! :smiley:

We had friends who moved there when the lady half of the couple got a job. As soon as she could get a job elsewhere they moved – to Kansas City. So, it’s worse than living in Kansas City. (They just upgraded to Des Moines, Iowa–so Yay! closer to us!)

I know that when you live in Vegas and come to visit Ohio in August and it’s 90 degrees here and 110 degrees there you complain the entire time about how HUMID it is here and OMG I AM ALL WET ALL THE TIME!

You also carry around bottled water everywhere because you can’t drink tap water anymore.

Wow, I didn’t know anything was worse than living in KC. LV must truly be a hell on earth.

We have lived in Las Vegas since 1999 and still love it.
Sure it has changed - the economy sucks in case anyone hasn’t noticed.
That said, getting work here depends upon your experience and expectations. As jobs get scarcer, employers can be choosy and pick candidates that might be overqualified for a lower salary. There is still work, but you have more competition.

The good news with the housing crunch is that instead of renting an apartment, you can lease an entire house for less than what a two-bedroom used to cost to rent. I live in the Southeast section, near Henderson, and it is quite nice - many good shopping areas, good streets and boulevards, lots of amenities for locals.

Sure the electric bills are high - we average above 100 degrees every day in the summer. We set our thermostat for 81 degrees and, for a two story house, pay about $275-$300 per month for electricity in the summer. That goes down to about $85 a month in the non-summer months.

We currently have friends visiting from NYC (you know you have tourists visiting when you see them laying in the sun in the backyard! Most locals live like vampires and avoid the sun!) They are pleasantly shocked at how cheap everything is here, compared to NYC.


  1. Depends upon your profession and job expectations with regards to finding work. Some jobs, like construction, are almost impossible to find.
  2. Housing is cheaper than ever before - you can rent what used to be a $300,000+ house for perhaps as low as $800-1000 a month, often with a nice pool in the backyard.
  3. As a 24 hour town, you have lots of amenities and there are many places for locals with Nevada ID, that have even cheaper things to do - discounts on movies/shows, buffets, restaurants as well as finding places in your neighborhood with great deals.
  4. Yeah, summer is hot and utilities are high, but that is the cost of living where it is always sunny and bright, and I like sunny and bright (even in the winter months!).
  5. Hopefully you like your friends and family as, once you live here you will get more visitors than you ever had in your life; everybody wants an excuse to come to Las Vegas, and having a friend or family member who lives there is reason enough.

Should you move here, drop me a PM and we’ll get together for a drink and a quick lay of the land!
P.S. Don’t fall for the “newbie” trap and try to find housing near The Strip - I would venture to guess 98% of the locals who live here never go there unless they work there. Far better places to go, less crowded and less expensive. Trust me on this.

What the hell? I know plenty of people who carry around bottled water in the city, but that’s because of convenience, not because of grime. Now, in some of the hotels (I’m looking at you, South Point), their water filtration systems are wonky and the tap water tastes funny to downright bad, but I’ve never had this issue at anybody’s house.

As many have said, there are plenty of large, nice houses to be grabbed up for pretty cheap, but several of my friends rent apartments around town that include electricity and cable in the price. C’mon, not having to pay an electric bill in Vegas? Nice.

The area of Las Vegas DMark is talking about, which I believe is Green Valley, would be my first choice to live in. Its not truly expensive, but a little too pricey for me right now. However, I live close enough that I go to the Trader Joes and Costco there, its so much greener than the rest of Vegas.
Also, regarding entertainment we are getting a huge water park here next year (opens Memorial Day, 2012) It will be located quite a ways from the Strip, in the Southwest area near Ft. Apache and Warm Springs Rd.

I’ve been here since 1996 and still love it.

I live in Henderson (real Henderson, not that Green Valley place ;)) and I love it out here.

Rents are cheap right now, and as others have said you can rent a house for the same as you can rent an apartment. My house rent includes all my utilities, too.

DMark is on the money re: employment. It really depends on what you do as to how available jobs are. If you are a construction trade type, it’s gonna be hard for you. What kind of work will you be looking for?

There’s a lot to do here, especially if you like hiking and/or rock climbing. If you like camping as well, there’s about a gazillion places to go in an 8-10 hour drive from Las Vegas that will knock your socks off. I’ve been visiting every place I can in that radius for more than 15 years and still haven’t been everywhere or done everything I want to do.

If you like skiing or snowboarding, there is a ski slope at Lee Canyon, or you can drive 3 hours to Brian Head or drive 4 hours to Eagle Point (formerly Elk Meadows). I recommend Eagle Point; it has some great powder and the runs are both fun and varied in skill level.

You can rent jet skis and stuff to take out on Lake Mead, if you like water fun. Many people own boats and the lake is ideal for waterskiing, fishing, and just driving around from shady spot to shady spot to go swimming.

I know my friends who pay for electricity pay high bills from mid-May to mid-September, but the winter months are much cheaper and it all balances out. Personally, I barely even run my heat in the winter at all (usually just mornings until I get out of the shower, so maybe for 30 minutes a day is all).

I’d rather live in Vegas than KC, and my friends who moved here from Lawrenceville, KS are much happier here.

What sort of jobs do people do in Vegas besides blackjack dealer or stripper?

I manage three veterinary hospitals and my partner is a tour guide for a local tour company that goes to Grand Canyon, Death Valley, Zion, etc. My dad worked for government, my mom is a medical assistant for a doctor, one grandfather worked for the dam and the other for Nellis Air Force Base. I personally don’t know any dealers or strippers and the only thing close to having a “Vegas” job in my family is my sister; she’s a bartender and a freelance graphics artist.

I am also a bit of a shepherdess ;).

I grew up near Vegas in Boulder City - which is a great place to live. Near enough to Vegas (20 miles) but without the gambling or casinos. I like the casinos, and the gambling a little too much but it’s nice to live a way from that. Henderson would be my second choice. Good parks, safer area and as previously mentioned, Trader Joes. There’s a great variety of restaurants and certain attractions like the Shark Reef or the Springs Preserve are worth going back to occasionally. There is quite a bit of natural beauty within a short distance; Red Rock, Mt. Charleston, Lake Mead when it’s got water in it, Grand Canyon, Zion, Eagle Valley/Pioche area. Highly recommend a day trip to Great Basin National Park (4 hours) near Ely.

Economy sucks if you want a decent job. Not so decent jobs can be had if you want to squeak by. My partner was out of work for 5 months and had to take a job at Petsmart but soon after starting he got the tour company gig which actually pays well and has good benefits, etc. I was out of work for 7 months but I was on U/E and devastated about being laid off so I don’t think my heart was in the job search for about 4 months. Worked from home for a little while and called an old boss and it was like “instant job”.

We just moved back to Boulder City - you can get an apartment or duplex here for $750-900 a month. We pay $1025 for a small two bedroom house that was one of the original “dam worker” houses. We have a nice downtown area with a great wine bar, a pretty good brewing company and lots of pretty, green streets to walk the dogs in. Everyone is friendly where I found in Vegas, I could live next to people for years and barely know who they were.

We pay less for electricity in Boulder but in Vegas it was $250-350 in the summers and about $100 in the winter.

The thing I don’t like about Vegas is that people don’t stay. You don’t have a sense of community- or it’s very hard to find it. Henderson and Boulder City have more of a neighborhood feel to them, in my experience. And the summers suck…we got off easy this year but the furnace heat for 3 months is oppressive. The rest of the year is outstanding weather-wise.

Every other kind of job? (Edit: You’re probably being facetious, but just in case.) Most of my mother’s siblings and their families live there (my grandparents settled there in the 1960s). One of my uncles was actually a blackjack dealer for a while, and my grandfather was an accountant at the Sands Hotel, but no one else had/has any ties to the casinos. That uncle now works in the medical field, his wife is a teacher, one uncle worked for the city government, his wife worked for the court system, one aunt worked at the DMV, cousins are electricians/interior designers/paralegals/substitute teachers…you get the idea. Regular jobs you find in any city.

Personally, though, I’m really glad I didn’t grow up there, and it really is 90% strip malls.

This is really kind of an obnoxious question. There are also roulette dealers and [del]prostitutes[/del] escorts.

Do this right away, before the lake disappears completely. Water levels are at an all-time low and dropping. When the lake vanishes, so does Las Vegas.

A little bit.

But more seriously, are there major industries or companies in Vegas besides entertainment related?

Mostly its entertainment/tourism related or those industries that provide support for the entertainment/tourism trade. Construction is usually huge (but not now, which is a big part of their bust) as there is almost always construction going on for the casinos.

There is UNLV. But it isn’t huge.

There are some minor industries. Ethel M’s candy factory :slight_smile:

Even this is improving! Here is a link from the Las Vegas Sun newspaper giving some good news on this front - already raised 30 feet, and another 40 feet higher to come. Certainly not the end of the drought, but when then lake rises 70 feet, that is good news nonetheless.

Regarding professions here - I teach at a college and prior to that, worked at a law firm designing databases. I don’t have any friends who work on The Strip, and only a few of my students do (at night clubs, bars, etc.) just to earn some extra money during college - not as a career. One question I ask my students on the first day is how many of them were born and raised here. Every year that number increases. Used to be I was lucky to find one or two - now I am getting about 1/3 of my class born and raised here. One question those locals students hate is when people ask if if their mom is a stripper and dad is a dealer…and no, we don’t eat in buffets every day, and no we don’t go to The Strip every day. I would venture to guess most of the people who work at the school haven’t been to The Strip in years. For instance, we will be going to The Strip today - first time in a few months - but we only go because we have so many visitors from out of state, or out of the country, and they want to see it all. We like going there when taking visitors, but otherwise - we have plenty of places to go in our area. (BTW, we don’t live in Green Valley but are Henderson adjacent - one block away to be exact.)