Pros and Cons For Staying in the Big City


We have thought about staying in the big city and moving out of the big city, Sydney for a long, long time and weighing up the pros and cons for staying in the big city and it’s always been a case of where to?  There is no doubt about it that Sydney is a great city.  I am sure most people all over the world think why would you want to move out of Sydney?  But in wanting to experience something different and making sure it was the right decision for our family we had to sit down and think about all the things we love and hate about it.

There are plenty of places I would move to but then I remember it isn’t just about me but about hubby and the kids too.  We had to think of  the pros and cons and what we really loved and what we really disliked about the big bustling city we live in and this is what we came up with:

pros and cons for staying in the big city

Pros for staying in the big city:

  1. There is a lot of opportunity for the kids and us as far as schools, universities and work goes
  2. If you want to blend in, you can.  You can get lost in a big city and stay incognito (if that’s your thing)
  3. There is so much to do in Sydney from dining out to kids activities and city sites, we are very spoilt for choice
  4. Where we live we are surrounded by the bush which is wonderful for us and the kids to explore on the weekends
  5. Sydney is an economically stable city to live in and hopefully that won’t change any time soon.
  6. From a social networking point of view it would be very easy to make new friends in Sydney if you put yourself out there
  7. Most of the places that I venture to make really good coffee which is essential

Cons for living in the big city:

  1. Sydney is a very fast pace and it can feel very overwhelming to keep up with that
  2. To live in Sydney you need to make a lot of money and basically be mortgaged for the rest of your life.  I worry about that for my kids and how they will ever be able to afford it
  3. The traffic is absolutely off the charts.  It takes so long to get anywhere and it’s only getting worse
  4. If you like more of a sense of community, then Sydney isn’t for you.  Our neighbours have lived next to us for 7 years and we still don’t know who they are
  5. Sydney is huge.  Getting anywhere takes ages, traffic doesn’t help but the city sprawls so far and a commute to the city for work can be a real stretch each day if you can’t afford to live near the city
  6. There is an expectation of ‘Keeping up with the Jones’s’ which can create a lot of unnecessary stress and worry of failure
  7. There is never time to actually sit back and enjoy anything because everything needs to be done now, I know you’ve seen my text so you have 5 minutes to reply

Large cities have a lot to offer it’s true and we are not unhappy in Sydney.  We have made a good life for ourselves, we are happy, our kids are happy.  The school we are at is great and we have wonderful friends.  The last 5 years we have made some amazing friends and I know I will miss them a lot.  Friends are very important to me and I am a very social person and love catching up with friends.  We also have the support network of our family too which the kids love and of course there is countless babysitting opportunities that we have to go out to dinner or have a weekend to ourselves!  But I think often you feel overwhelmed by the city and the struggle to get ahead or keep everything going.  There is  a lot of pressure to be earning a lot of money in order to keep up a life in many of the suburbs of our great city and you often feel like a rat on a wheel just keeping everything going.  Is that living?  Do I want to teach my kids that is what life is all about?0733665D-D3C3-4DDC-82D5-08FF0EBBD997

Money is obviously important but do we make it harder on ourselves the more we earn?  Do we actually need as much money as we think we do?  I often get caught up and say to my husband “but we NEED this amount of money to live here and do the things we want to do”.  And he often says to me “but do we?”  It’s a very good point.  Living in a large city if you have a disposable income you save and you spend it on things you like doing, but if you earn less and there is less to spend it on does that make you unhappy?  No I don’t think it does.  Happiness isn’t spending money on ‘doing’ things, happiness is all the free stuff you do with your family and friends.  Playing at the park, playing in the backyard, going bush walking, watching a movie, just simply talking around the dinner table.  It doesn’t matter where you are as long as you have the important people around you and money definitely can’t buy that.

Do you think we place too much emphasis on how much money we actually need to live on?  I would be really interested to hear your thoughts on the pros and cons for staying in the big city.


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  • Reply The Year Of The Daffodil 23/09/2016 at 10:51 am

    Definitely, that would be so lovely! So excited for you guys and your journey

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 27/09/2016 at 9:13 pm

      Would be so much fun! Just got told the build will start in about 4 weeks! Eeeeek!

  • Reply The Year Of The Daffodil 22/09/2016 at 6:03 pm

    We moved back from Auckland to my home town which is about 70,000 people but still much much smaller than Aucklands 1.3 million. Which I guess in NZ terms is a reasonable move. I really miss the live gigs and the shopping and events in Auckland, but when we moved back here honestly life seemed so much more relaxed. I kept ending up being 20 minutes early to everything for like the first year! Wasn’t used to not accounting for traffic. In Auckland a lot of people we knew had smaller families, and we were going to stick with two kids and then when we moved and the pace of life changed, so we decided to have a couple more – now we are super busy haha. I also found it really difficult that to catch up with someone you had to book a few weeks ahead for coffee etc, and here it’s a little more relaxed. We enjoyed our time in Auckland but now prefer the smaller city lifestyle. We have also found the cost of education for the kids is a lot more affordable and spend more time doing things that cost less. So many community events, beaches and parks to enjoy. We love it.

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 22/09/2016 at 9:51 pm

      I love hearing that! That is so fantastic. I think that was the appeal with Queenstown, I always told my husband I still needed to be somewhere that if I wanted to go out to dinner we could, or there was some nice water holes and other places to go. But I wanted the small town community feel which I think is lost in some of the bigger cities. The pace of life is what I want to change and the stress. It sounds so lovely where you are now and I like you don’t have to book in weeks in advance for a coffee. And yes to community events. I love stuff like that. I think when we move across the ditch I will have to road trip to see your beautiful part of the world one day 🙂 xxx

  • Reply Sophia 24/06/2016 at 10:29 am

    I live in a big city too. I love the city but hate the traffic.

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 24/06/2016 at 12:36 pm

      Yes, the city can be great but I hear you on the traffic. It only gets worse here too. 🙁

  • Reply Mamabeargreen 24/06/2016 at 5:53 am

    I’m in America, so my experience is different, but I live in the suburbs and it has its challenges too. Specifically, I am challenged to find other working moms to talk to. I feel like everyone stays home or works part time. Here are my pros/cons for living in the suburbs:
    – long commute
    – fewer like-minded people
    – lack of cultural experiences

    – nature
    – good schools
    – safe

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 24/06/2016 at 7:02 am

      That’s really interesting because I would have thought being the suburbs there would be many working mums. Most of the mums I know are working mums but in saying that the area I live in does have a lot of stay at home mums and I must agree that it is hard sometimes because it is a different mind set and it is hard for them to relate to a different kind of juggle! I love your list of pro’s, they are good ones but a real shame on your cons as they would make your whole experience so much better. I hope you do find some like minded people. Thanks so much for sharing your pros and cons. 🙂

  • Reply Jasmine Hewitt 24/06/2016 at 12:41 am

    I went from living in small towns, to large cities, to back in the small town-they both have their good and bad qualities

    • Reply In The Lyons Den 24/06/2016 at 6:58 am

      They sure do, it is great to experience both too. Hopefully the good will out way the bad in this case! 🙂 Thanks for reading.

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