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Old 09-14-2017, 05:16 PM
 
6 posts, read 9,839 times
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My wife and I are trying to visit as many prospective retirement towns in Arizona as we can.
Kingman came to my attention recently, along with Prescott and Payson.
We're flying into town tomorrow, staying for 7 days in Sedona, and checking out whatever we can.

Any advice, general impressions, or comparisons to our listed towns. We're aware Kingman is little lower elevation compared to Prescott and Payson and that's OK. We just don't want winters like we have in NW Indiana any more. LOL! A semi-retirement job is a possibility for me, wife can work remotely.

We'd like a balance of climate, privacy, night life once in a while, maybe a brewery and winery or two, good motorcycle riding opportunity. I hope that paints a general picture.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 09-14-2017, 05:26 PM
 
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
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Kingman.... its isolated, has an issue with drugs, etc. It has 2 breweries that I know of, but they're nothing special. Prescott and Payson are much cooler year round, with snowfall that melts off pretty quick. Id choose Prescott of the 3, by a long shot. If you could handle the ridiculous heat, you should look into places like Fountain Hills.
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Old 09-14-2017, 09:10 PM
 
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the three cities you mention are very different from each other.......

with apologies to the two or more active forum members who live/d in Kingman, the city has a rep among many longtime Arizonans for being a bit rough, dusty, even trashy, and for being the gas stop on the way to Las Vegas....it is warm in the summer and can be windy, but summer evenings and mornings are very nice.....nice I-40 access to California and Flagstaff/Grand Canyon and an hour from Las Vegas.....nicer, newer subdivisions and a nice (small) downtown with businesses giving it a go down there.....entirely unpretentious town...busy railroad line...Hualapai Mountains for summer and winter play just outside of town....real estate by far the most reasonable of your trio of choices.....the railroad, I-40, and US 93 to Las Vegas give much of the town a vaguely commercial/industrial/transient/car-centric vibe

Prescott has been significantly "Californicated" in the last few decades, driving real estate prices to among the highest in the state, depending on where exactly you look in the area.....classic Mayberry downtown with the attractive courthouse square validates Prescott's motto: "Everybody's Hometown".....lots of growth over the last several years makes it by far the largest metro area of your three options.....population leans older with all the Cal retirees, but there are plenty of young people, too.....outer areas outside Prescott proper are less expensive and some spots may appear close to white-trash......popular in the summer with Phoenicians escaping the heat.....coolest of your three, but still warm on summer afternoons

Payson is, by far, the smallest of your choices and the most remote......slightly warmer than Prescott, but a good bit cooler than Kingman......though not a big town, Home Depot and WalMart have representation here and some other usual chains can be found.....very friendly vibe, especially in the mom n pop joints near downtown......surprising number of homes and cabins hidden up there in the pines outside of town.....90 minutes to the Phx area on a now-divided highway.....Pine and Strawberry are popular, smaller cabin-y towns 15 miles away and are also popular with the second-home Phx crowd.....busy on hot summer weekends......like Prescott, real estate not a bargain, but slightly??? cheaper feeling than Prescott

all your choices have good motorcycle-riding opportunities and outdoor exploration.....Prescott, being the most touristy, will have a few brewpubs and the most nightlife.....Payson and Kingman might have a couple breweries??......don't know about wineries.......

Last edited by azdr0710; 09-14-2017 at 09:23 PM..
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Old 09-15-2017, 05:47 AM
 
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Thank You for that excellent and detailed post! You really touched on every single question I asked!

I noticed some of the real estate trends you described. It's always the same with us. We're at the tail end of the Baby Boomers, and we're always the last to join the party, so to speak. lol! (Concerning Prescott growth)
The good news is, we have a year or two before we decide, but if the right place comes along we can buy, and start getting ready to make the move.

Depending on what we think of as "value for the money", our cities of choice can change. I like, and can more easily afford Mesa, for example.
At least we're narrowing it down. We started a year ago looking at Florida or Arizona. You can see what happened with that choice. So, we're still making progress.
Many Thanks again for both of the responses!
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Old 09-15-2017, 03:09 PM
 
Location: Arizona
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Of the three towns you mentioned, Payson has the least going for it, but is in a very scenic area, at least from what I saw. Prescott is probably the best bet of the three, however is well known for drug treatment centers, and the users that come with that.

Kingman is nothing special IMO, there may be one or two other people on here who tell you otherwise. The good, its close to Vegas, but yes its a pit stop along the way. Parts of the town known as Butler(basically north of Northern) and Birdland are a no go...avoid them at all costs!! Kingman has a huge drug problem, but a majority of crimes beyond that are DV and theft related. Kingman has a mix of good and bad neighborhoods and does have some "upper scale" subdivisions. Compared to Bullhead which is mostly bad and Lake Havasu which is mostly good. The housing costs in Kingman are actually quiet reasonable and you can buy a practically new home with granite, wood floors, etc for under $200k.

As far as nightlife, there are a few bars, there is a really good brewery (Black Bridge) downtown, but if you are looking to bar crawl or go clubbing Kingman isn't it, but again Vegas, Laughlin, and Havasu are all no more then 1.5 hours away.

The winters can get cold, 30-40 degrees at night, but rarely see snow. It does get quite windy a lot, which doesn't bother most people. Its cooler in the summer than BHC or LHC due to its elevation.

Kingman is a town resistant of change, which may appeal to you. A lot of business opportunities have been lost to other Mohave Co areas because of it.
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Old 09-16-2017, 09:54 PM
 
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I know a couple who work online, selling on Amazon and eBay. They moved to Kingman to escape California.

They love the low COL. I suppose that would be a real asset if your income is seasonal, like many who sell online. Being able to easily make the rent or mortgage all year round might make the drawbacks seem slight.
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Old 09-26-2017, 09:16 AM
 
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Kingman...... meth capitol of AZ
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Old 10-01-2017, 12:36 AM
 
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We moved from NW Indiana in January. We also were considering Prescott and Kingman. We really liked Prescott. We weren't ready to move yet, but found a builder, and got a price in November2014. Long story short we came back in May2015 and the builder stated it would be $30,000 more when we would start to build in the fall. So Kingman was on our list. We visited and found it to be much more affordable. We built a nice home with more upgrades then we could get in Prescott Valley. Love being a 10 minute drive up to the Hualapais. In Prescott you are an hour and a half from Phoenix and airport Kingman hour and half from Vegas and airport.Scenic drive to Laughlin, Grand Canyon West. Kingman has more of a small town feel to me. I think after you visit you will know which town you will prefer. For me Payson would be my last choice. It feels to remote for me. It is beautiful and I have enjoyed it when visiting. Prescott has the most to offer as far as restaurants, and shopping. Everything looks new and clean. Kingman has enough restaurants and shopping for me. Cracker barrel, Chili's, and a many other chain restaurants, as well as mom and pop shops. It is situated conveniently to other points of interest. As I stated it came down to what we could afford. I have enjoyed the weather. We eat outside without being bothered by mosquitos or yellow jackets. In February and March we enjoyed being able to take a walk in the sunshine. It was in the 50's 60's and 70's in the daytime. Coming from the midwest it felt wonderful. I just met someone who recently moved here from Valparaiso. They also like Kingman. The thing I miss most about the Midwest is the pizza, and Chicago style food.Dazzo's in Wikiup is great for Italian beef and Chicago style food. I don't miss the weather though! There are so many things to do in the state of Arizona, and beautiful weather to enjoy doing them. Here is a list of some of the things we have done while living in Kingman. Fireworks on Memorial day on the river in Laughlin, fireworks in Kingman and Laughlin on the 4th, Keepers of the wild, Andy Devine days Rodeo, Andy Devine days,where we enjoyed a wonderful parade, car show and Historical Rt 66 presentation at the Kingman Museum. Many antique stores and quaint shops and restaurants downtown. Chillin on Beale which is FREE Cruise-In, Block Party and Movie night! Come and enjoy Classic Cars, music and a free movie. Free Movie night inside of Beale Celebrations,15 minutes up to the Hualapai mountains where you can enjoy cooler temps, hiking, picnic, and the beauty of the pine trees, and wildlife, Alpaca farm days, Farmers market on Saturdays, Mohave museum of History and Art, Craft shows in the Hualapai Mountains, Hiking, Veteran's day parade, Brews and brats October fest, RT 66 cruizers , 14 public parks, 2 public pools, 2 golf courses, The Kathryn Heidenreich Adult Center with MANY activities, Desert Diamond Distillery, Cella Winery, Diana's Cellar door, PLUS MANY activities in Laughlin, Lake Havasu,Oatman, Chloride, Grand Canyon West, and Bullhead city. Best wishes to you. Let us know what you decide.

Last edited by alyric2; 10-01-2017 at 01:16 AM..
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Old 10-05-2017, 09:57 AM
 
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For those living in Kingman ... how is the high-speed internet and cable TV situation? I've been considering Pahrump, NV, Kingman, AZ, and Wickenburg, AZ for my next move and reliable, high-speed internet without any data caps (eg. cable internet) is a must. No video streaming or stuff like that, but my business requires lots of large file transfers via FTP and essentially all day activity doing emails, trading, etc. Pahrump has dropped to the bottom of the list for that reason, and Wickenburg looks a little too small and is considerably more expensive than Kingman. But it would be interesting to know what the internet situation is in Kingman.

I'm 59 and not into night clubbing or that sort of thing ... and lived for 1 year in Henderson, NV in 2014 so have been through Kingman on I-40 a few times but never checked out the area. A quick web search showed only Suddenlink Communications as a cable/internet provider in Kingman ... so looks like a monopoly which usually means horrible service and high rates.
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Old 10-05-2017, 03:11 PM
 
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We have Suddenlink for internet and phone. We haven't had any problems. Frontier is in Kingman to. I refused to go with them after the terrible service we had with them in Indiana. I also like having a land line and to add the phone it is only 10.00 per month unlimited calls.
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