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Old 10-06-2007, 12:17 AM
 
Location: West LA
3,206 posts, read 8,837,732 times
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Default What are the most upscale/desirable areas to live in Austin?

No plans are final, but I'm considering a move out of West Los Angeles to somewhere where I can have a larger and nicer house for less money in order to be able to live a more relaxed lifestyle. I'm just looking around right now, so please no real estate pressure, but I would like some input.

Do you think I would be bored in Austin coming from LA? How much is a home in one of the safest areas for a middle income family in LA? Will I make more money in Austin than I do here? I currently work as a Pharmacist and would like to either do that, dentistry, or become a chef. Would any of those put me into the upper-middle class?

So my main questions are, what are the nicest areas in Austin, will I enjoy it there, and will I really get that much more house in Austin? Could someone provide zip codes for me to search?
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Old 10-06-2007, 10:08 AM
 
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Could I ask you a couple of questions before I give an opinion about if you might enjoy it or find it boring? What kinds of things do you enjoy doing and actually DO? For example, I might say I enjoy live music and shows downtown but we REALLY only go once or twice a year. What we actually DO is go to high school football and baseball games, Express baseball games, UT baseball games, hike the greenbelts, kayak and float down the rivers, visit family, watch the kids play in the front yard and talk to the neighbors, walk to the park to play tennis, basketball and swim, go to church and church activities, go to school activities and events and drive the kids around. We also like to go to art museums, history museums, the beach and camping...but these we do less often. Our life is far from boring....but we actually could live almost anywhere (close to family) and do this.

Another question, what amenities would you like in a neighborhood and what's your price range? There really are a LOT of upscale places to live and a lot of variety in each
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Old 10-06-2007, 11:21 AM
 
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There's two kinds of upscale neighborhoods in Austin - the liberal and conservative varieties. The conservative neighborhoods - which I know less about - are on the west side. West Lake Hills is one of them, and West Lake is considered to be the best school district. Tarrytown, I believe, is another one.

The liberal areas are Hyde Park, just north of the University, and Travis Heights, just south of Town Lake... I mean, Lady Bird Lake. Actually, pretty much the whole 78704 neighborhood has gone upscale, although I don't know that it's completely lost its redneck-hippie attitude yet. (They've recently taken to calling South Congress 'SoCo.' I used to live there, and I don't know that they've actually gotten people to call it that.) The more liberal areas are smaller, close-in houses in urban-ish neighborhoods. The conservative areas are more suburbanish, with bigger houses and bigger, greener lawns.

Anywhere east of I35 is generally considered the 'bad' part of town, although I'm guessing 'bad' means a whole other thing in Austin, than it does in LA. 78702 -traditionally called East Austin - used to be the Austin version of the ghetto, but the whole place is being demolished... I mean, renovated, and even shacks are going for a quarter of a million plus. ("The value is in the land...")

There's been a ton of appreciation in Austin over the past several years, although it's nothing like the inflation you've seen in CA. There's been a definite downturn in the market in the last one or two months, although I doubt you could get an agent to admit as much.

If you want to go up north, you can get a lot of house for a little money, but you need to understand you're not going to be in the real part of Austin if you do that, and you're going to spend a lot of time sitting in traffic if you commute downtown.
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Old 10-06-2007, 11:59 AM
 
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Jesse, I realized I didn't answer some of your questions.

Do you think I would be bored in Austin coming from LA?

I've never been to LA, so I can't answer that. But there's a ton of stuff to do in Austin, depending on what you're into. Barton Springs is a gorgeous park, with a huge spring-fed swimming area. Town Lake/Lady Bird Lake is a beautiful hike & bike trail in the heart of the city. UT is just north of downtown, with everything any major university would have, including live theater and other productions. Sixth Street is the 'live music capital of the world.' If you like drinking, and/or live music, it's definitely the place to go. I don't know what LA would offer that Austin doesn't have (other than Hollywood, of course), but like I said, I've never been there.

How much is a home in one of the safest areas for a middle income family in LA?

Try the mapping tool at escapesomewhere.com. I'd guess the 'safest' areas would have to be on the west side, West Lake Hills. Houses over there are expensive, though I don't know that they'll seem expensive to you.

Will I make more money in Austin than I do here?

I doubt it.
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Old 10-06-2007, 12:05 PM
 
290 posts, read 819,885 times
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There is a huge difference between Austin and LA. If you come to Austin expecting LA you will be disappointed. Visit Austin first and then decide.
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Old 10-06-2007, 12:14 PM
 
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If you want an overcrowded, crime ridden city, stay in LA. If you want an easy going lifestyle with friendly people, come to Austin. If you consider yourself to be "middle income", I don't think upscale Austin would be for you. The suburbs of SW Austin are exclusive, more so than Cedar Park, Pflugerville, etc. If you like outdoor activities, SW Austin, zip 78739 might be for you.
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Old 10-06-2007, 01:11 PM
 
Location: West LA
3,206 posts, read 8,837,732 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by llkltk View Post
If you want an overcrowded, crime ridden city, stay in LA. If you want an easy going lifestyle with friendly people, come to Austin. If you consider yourself to be "middle income", I don't think upscale Austin would be for you. The suburbs of SW Austin are exclusive, more so than Cedar Park, Pflugerville, etc. If you like outdoor activities, SW Austin, zip 78739 might be for you.
well middle income in LA would be like upper class in most other cities in america. i make about 100k+ a year and i only live normally here. if you want a comfortable life here, 100k is the minimum.
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Old 10-06-2007, 01:17 PM
 
Location: West LA
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for fun i like to go on road trips to a lake...though in austin it could be to the beach. i also like outdoor shopping areas (not strip malls, open air malls, with no roofs). yes i'm a guy, but i like to shop mainly only for electronics though. i also like the hustle and bustle of LA, which i know for a fact won't be as much in Austin, because i am attracted towards crowds. i also like going to concerts so I guess Austin would be good for me.

i dont have a boat now, but if i moved there, i would probably be able to afford one, so are there nice lakes within less than a days' drive? also, is Austin hilly at all. i'm not exactly fond of places that are flat like the midwest.

in LA, i would spend about 1 mil on a house, but in Austin, maybe 800+/-k since that would still be considered a lot there right?

also, I'm Jewish and a democrat, so would i be able to fit in at all. i don't look jewish or anything, but are there any temples in the city that i could go to just for the holidays?
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Old 10-06-2007, 02:09 PM
 
238 posts, read 526,542 times
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There are beautiful lakes west of Austin. People live on Lake Travis, and commute to work.

Austin is one of the last Democratic strongholds left in Texas. We still elect Democrats here - Austin is a dot of blue, in a sea of red.

There are lots of Jews in Austin, and temples, though not being one (a Jew), I couldn't tell you where they are.

$800k would buy you a buttload of house in Austin. Check the link I posted, or click here if you want to see one random example. Search the Austin MLS for Austin Homes
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Old 10-06-2007, 02:17 PM
 
Location: West LA
3,206 posts, read 8,837,732 times
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thanks. that's a cool website.

so are the areas around downtown nice areas. i think it would be cool to live near downtown since white people can't in LA
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