LA vs Seattle (Relocation for Snap L4 offer)

Apple STS-SG
Oct 12 23 Comments

Hi All,

I’m in the process of getting an offer from Snap for an L4 PM role, and I have been asked to share my preferred location, without being told if it will affect my package.

(side question:)
1. Can I expect the standard L4 SWE package: 190k/750:4/0 => TC = 377k?
Or should I expect less as a PM?

(side question:)
2. I got approached by a Pinterest recruiter, but as Snap does not negotiate even with counter-offers, I’m reluctant to start their process. Could it help me, maybe to get one of those rare 50k-100k stock sign-on bonuses?

(MAIN QUESTION:)
3. Assuming the package is city-agnostic, should I aim for:
-LA (Better weather, beach, better for fashion sideGigs) or
-SEA (No income tax, NO INCOME TAX, sweeter commute, more tech opps)

Considerations:
A. 1 kid
B. Partner working in Investment Management
C. 1 other kid soon, hopefully

Aspirations:
A. Providing for my family
B. Saving (not wasting) as much as possible
C. Getting Fashion Brand and App off-the-ground (sideGig)
D. Buying-to-let multiple houses/flats (sideGig)

Current TC 264k (160/320:4/24)
7 YOE

comments

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TOP 23 Comments
  • Airbnb kerrang!!
    I’m pretty sure Seattle tc is going to be lower, every companies adjust for location. Los Angeles is amazing if you’re renting close to the office, some parts of Venice, Marina del Rey, Playa Vista area is sweet - safe, minutes from the ocean and one of the best climates on the planet, a bit expensive but you can afford it with almost 400k tc.
    Every time I visit Seattle I can’t help but wonder how entire population is not hanging themselves with weather like that. Entire city looks like concentrated depression.
    Oct 12 3
    • Amazon anion
      There’s a different kind of beauty/appeal of the dark, cold, wet, and ominous depressing cities especially if it’s beside some waterbody :P
      Oct 12
    • Snapchat aFcf78
      Snap does not adjust for location within the US.
      Oct 12
    • Apple STS-SG
      OP
      Thanks all for replies and info.

      Actually I’m more Interested in getting mortgages to buy flats and have renters’rent pay for them than to live in my own (I’d rather rent myself)

      I totally have a preference for sunnier places, but business soundness matters most to me (for now)
      Oct 12
  • Facebook / Product kygo
    Def less TC as a PM compared to SWE. Probably around 0.75x RSUs compared to SWE.

    That being said, if TC is the same at both places, I’d pick LA over Seattle despite no income taxes in latter, simply because LA as a city is miles ahead of Seattle weather, nightlife, location to the beaches wise.
    Oct 12 1
    • Apple STS-SG
      OP
      Thanks for reply and info, @kygo.

      -TC would then be around 330k
      -Weather and beaches do matter to me 😅
      -What do you think about LA infamous commutes ?
      Oct 12
  • Amazon ivjdjx
    I think Seattle is a better place when you have family. Especially if you want to save money and buy a house. Regarding counter offers, they gave me sign on as a result of counter offer, so might be worth interviewing.
    P.S. they don't adjust salary, I was considering Seattle vs NYC, same TC.
    Oct 12 3
    • Apple STS-SG
      OP
      Thanks very much for the reply and info.
      -Why do you think so about family life? Is it due to differences in day care cost? Crime?

      -Money wise, this comparator
      https://www.nerdwallet.com/cost-of-living-calculator/compare/seattle-wa-vs-los-angeles-long-beach-ca seems to indicate that SEA is MORE expensive than LA

      -I’ll follow your advice regarding counter offer.

      -It seems indeed that their comp is city-agnostic

      Thanks
      Oct 12
    • Amazon ivjdjx
      I was in LA and I got a feeling that it is more about partying. Since you have a family, you might want something convenient and laid back. But weather is a big plus for LA. October-March is quite depressing it Seattle. It is not even rain, it is just lack of sun. If I were you, I would check out both locations before taking a decision.
      I am not an expert regarding cost of living. Significant chunk will go to rent and I think the same money will give you better apartment in Seattle. But as always it depends where you will rent. Even if they are close, no 10% income tax is a huge deal.
      Oct 12
    • Apple STS-SG
      OP
      Thanks for input
      Oct 12
  • Disney tralala
    Seattle has passed an income tax on high earners, though it’s being challenged in court and you could live outside city proper. City and county property tax ratcheting up with no end in sight. WA state income tax will come sooner or later - funding for birth leave program will demand it. May still be lower taxes overall on high TC than many cities / states but definitely on the way up. I have lived in Seattle for decades but am planning an exit in next five years.
    Oct 12 4
    • Microsoft / Product
      Brazuka

      Microsoft Product

      PRE
      Bain & Company
      Brazukamore
      Kudos for making shit up. Seattle tax living costs are much lower than LA. Full stop.
      Oct 12
    • Apple STS-SG
      OP
      Thanks for reply and info, @tralala

      Interesting info on that State Income Tax.

      What is motivating that exit? And to where (if I may ask)?
      Oct 12
    • Apple STS-SG
      OP
      @Brazuka, thanks for reply and info.

      Would you care expanding?

      What do you think of the below
      👇

      https://www.nerdwallet.com/cost-of-living-calculator/compare/seattle-wa-vs-los-angeles-long-beach-ca
      Oct 12
    • Microsoft / Product
      Brazuka

      Microsoft Product

      PRE
      Bain & Company
      Brazukamore
      Nerdwallet overindexes on things that are irrelevant to affluent families. Real estate is cheaper in Seattle and there s no state income tax. That's what matters, not the price of big Mac.
      Oct 12
  • Snapchat / Eng
    gosnap

    Snapchat Eng

    PRE
    Google
    gosnapmore
    LA will make career growth inside the company easier. Though if you care about career growth you might need to put your side gig on hold. PMs work hard at Snap
    Oct 12 1
    • Apple STS-SG
      OP
      Thanks for reply and info, @gosnap

      That’s indeed a good insight.
      Oct 12
  • Amazon anion
    LA, if you’re serious about your side gig (and expect to generate big money eventually enabling you to quit corporate job).
    else: Seattle
    Oct 12 2
  • Snapchat User489
    Having recently moved to Sea from LA..

    •West LA is = Downtown Sea in cost of living.

    •25 min commute in Seattle (10-20 miles) lowers your rent by 30%.

    •25 min commute in LA (3-4 miles) lowers your rent by 10%.

    •Weather in Seattle is tough but it brings: snow sports, real nature (not just dessert), Lake time, fresh air, camping, fishing, biking, IE things that make a great childhood.

    •If you’re looking to invest in real estate, LA will require a huge buy in. Seattle is ripe for buying to rent out.

    •If you don’t mind every piece of your outdoor time being centered around a beach packed with people, LA is prob your choice.

    And as someone said, if living in the fashion industry is at all important to you, Seattle is not for you.

    For me PNW > LA and it’s not close.
    Oct 14 1
    • Snapchat / Eng
      gosnap

      Snapchat Eng

      PRE
      Google
      gosnapmore
      LA is actually closer to skiing than SF. FML :/
      Oct 14
  • Deluxe / Product
    Levels

    Deluxe Product

    PRE
    Electronic Arts (EA)
    BIO
    AMA about video games industry.
    Levelsmore
    Hey OP,

    Living in LA is a lot more expensive than you’d think.

    Expect to pay ~$1000 per sqft if you want to live within 30 minutes drive of the office. If you don’t mind 1hr commute each way you can live in the valley or the South Bay (~$500 sqft)

    Don’t forget education costs. A lot of people pay for private K-12 which ranges from $20k to $40k per year. There are some good school districts (Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, Palos Verdes, Pasadena).

    FWIW, A lot of friends with families moved to Seattle to join Microsoft back in 2009. Housing, including LA, was a lot cheaper then.
    Oct 14 0

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