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Old 11-14-2013, 02:02 PM
 
Location: Atlanta, GA
52 posts, read 147,406 times
Reputation: 37

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Dear Cincinnati area dwellers,
I have accepted a job in Loveland,OH. I am pretty happy about it!
I've not yet been to Cincinnati, but I am hoping to have some input as to whether what I am looking for exists. I am considering ideas centered on the Finneytown/Loveland or Norwood/Loveland areas, but don't need to live in any of them.

In a nutshell:
I'm hoping to be ½ way between my church and work, which would mean a 15 min drive from either Norwood area (Ashland Ave) or Finneytown area (Winton Road) (two possible churches, I'll know which one after I visit!), AND a 30-40 min drive from Loveland (work) and also be a 15 min drive to hiking.

However, I'd like a large yard where I can grow a vegetable garden without being concerned if there are laws against that. I would ideally like to be near horse stables as well. I am not comfortable living in yuppie suburbs with big McMansions where everyone chases the almighty dollar and soccer balls. I prefer a mix of blue collar/rural/white collar. I prefer a mixed race community , however, I am white and prefer to not be a minority or discriminated against for being white. But I really don't like everyone looking like me either. Just down to earth, nice people, who have porches and some sense of community regardless of race. I am Christian and don't think a new age type community would work well for me. I prefer something quiet, and I would like to see stars at night and hear crickets instead of cars and bars.

Should I stay outside 275? Would Mason be a good fit? Or east side outside 275?

Thank you very much for your input and experiences!
Meg


Here is the questionnaire:

. Have you searched this forum for answers to your questions before posting a new inquiry?
Yes

. Where is your current location and environment?
I am moving from Woodstock, GA, a suburb of north Atlanta, GA

. Are you looking for similar in Cincinnati or a change?
More rural, less traffic, closer hiking, where I can grow a vegetable garden, see the stars, and hear crickets instead of cars.

. Where will your work location be?
Loveland, OH

. Maximum commute time desired?
30-40 mins one way

. What is your budget for housing?
200K to buy, 800/mo to rent

. Rent or buy?
rent initially

. Type (Apt., Condo, Single Family)
Apartment or townhome rental initially, single family within a year.

. Size (Approx. Sq. Ft., # Bedrooms & Baths)
2/2 – 1000 sq ft

. Other specifics?
looking for larger yard, 15 mins to hiking and either Ashland Ave, Cincinnati, OH 45212
or 7000 Winton Road, Cincinnati, OH 45224 (yeah, I realize they're on different sides of town!), but also within 20-40 mins drive to Loveland area.

. Neighborhood environment?
Small town, quiet, low traffic, where I can see the stars, and hear crickets!

. Urban, young professional, nightlife
No to the urban night life idea

. Mid-urban, close in neighborhood or suburb, stable investment
Looking more for suburb or somewhat rural, but not so rural as to not have a supermarket and an hour commute one-way! Horses or stables and hiking and gardening…..

. Suburban, low maintenance, quiet streets, soccer mom atmosphere
Definitely not a soccer mom atmosphere. I have no kids with me, suburbia is not my thing.

. Family oriented
Sure, I love families

. Lots of same age kids, activities
Meh, not so important.

. Great schools
Sure, I like my neighbors to be educated!

. Older, distinctive architecture, individual character
Ah, would love this if I could not have a rural area.

. Modern, 15 yrs old or less, move-in ready
Um...well, not looking for run down, but age is not so important, except I really dislike those 60’s one level ranches

. Diversity of income, race, housing?
Mixed is desirable, I don’t want to be a minority or discriminated against for being white though.

. Yard - none, small, large (1/2 acre or more)
½ acre or more, yes please

. Very safe, low crime area?
Yes please. I am a single female!

. Can tolerate some degree of crime potential? How Much?
No, I’d prefer very low crime, thank you.

. Private neighborhood association, swimming & fitness facilities
Totally unimportant

. Schools?
Not applicable

. Community amenities?
X. Daily needs within walking distance, shopping, restaurants, parks, etc.
X. Jogging & biking trails
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Old 11-14-2013, 02:58 PM
 
Location: Mason, OH
9,259 posts, read 14,144,882 times
Reputation: 1928
The majority of Loveland is outside of the I-275 loop on the northeast side. Loveland as a whole is not as built up as some nearby communities such as Mason, but there are plenty of newer, large home, small lot subdivisions. But there are still quite a number of older homes on larger lots which have a more rural feel.

Since schools are not of concern to you, I would recommend looking in either the less dense areas of Loveland which would be the northwest portion of the city, or just to the east or south to find that more rural lot with space for a garden. They won't be the most convenient for the trip to the church locations you mentioned, but they won't be soccer mom territory either. Loveland is right on the Little Miami National Historic Scenic River which has a Bike Trail along its banks stretching for some 80 miles. You might want to consider biking in lieu of hiking.

I live in Mason, have for 37 years, and love it. But I do not recommend it for you. Currently Mason and areas like West Chester/Liberty Townships are very attractive to young families with kids due to the high quality schools. Home prices are high for this reason. My home, with its one acre lot and an 80 X 80 ft rear garden plot would suit you just fine. But it is not for sale and only a rare few in the price range exist here today. Several homes in my neighborhood have sold in the past couple of years, all bought by young families who had the dumpster outside before they moved in, remodeled the original house and added large additions, for three reasons (1) the average one acre lot, which is now a rarity, and (2) we are less then 1/2 mile from the Mason school and Community Center complex, and (3) with the rehab they still beat the cost of new construction for the square footage, # of bedrooms, etc., even if the layout might be a little squirrely.

I strongly advise to use the online mapping facilities to become familiar with where Loveland is, its size, what surrounds it, and also the potential locations of the churches you may desire to attend. The more you can learn before you come to visit the better off you will be.

The topography here is not Atlanta, GA. Familiarize yourself with it or be prepared to be surprised.

OH Yes, if you believe those average travel times on a weekday, mid-day, mid-summer, you are more gullible than I am.
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Old 11-14-2013, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Philaburbia
32,930 posts, read 61,373,550 times
Reputation: 55156
I'd suggest concentrating your search in northwestern Clermont County, nearest to Loveland, or southeastern Warren County. You'll be going to church once or twice a week, but you'll be going to work every day.

Rent an apartment in or near Loveland for a year, and scope out the area before you buy. But if you want to buy, you'd be able to find houses in the outskirts of Loveland or Milford with large lots; in the towns, you'll get the average quarter-acre lot or smaller -- but hey, I've grown a large garden and at one point owned three laying hens on my 0.13 acres, so anything is possible.
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Old 11-15-2013, 06:47 AM
 
Location: Mason, OH
9,259 posts, read 14,144,882 times
Reputation: 1928
OP ...
Many years ago when I lived in Madeira a neighbor up the street from me dug up their entire front yard and made a garden. There were a number of complaints obviously, but after checking it was found out there was nothing on the books saying what could or could not be planted in a front yard.

The council passed an emergency ordinance regulating what a front yard could be. In addition to excluding a vegetable garden, they included no fencing in a front yard, no added parking pad over one car width wide from a recognized driveway, plus several others. They couldn't force the neighbor to remove their garden after the fact, but they did prevent their replanting it the following year. But the neighbor retaliated by planting the entire front yard in a ground cover which grew about 1-1/2' tall. Back to the drawing board with another ordinance.
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Old 11-15-2013, 07:18 AM
 
Location: Mason, OH
9,259 posts, read 14,144,882 times
Reputation: 1928
OP...

I agree with the opinion to look in northwestern Clermont Co. nearest to Loveland. This is probably your best bet for a large lot at an affordable price. Loveland is somewhat unique as it actually exists in 3 counties - Hamilton, Warren, and Clermont. In southeastern Warren Co. you may have to look long and hard for an older home on a larger lot within your price range. If you get too far north you will mess up the commute time to work plus everything else.

BTW, I believe there are still some stables on the east side of Loveland for boarding horses. I don't know if any just have horses you can hire to go and take a ride, but if they exist you are in the right territory.

I do understand your desire for a more rural environment. When I first moved here we had cows at the back fence which enjoyed our kids petting them. Times they do change. The reason we stay here is the environment. Our next door neighbors have lots approaching an acre. So there is some 200' plus in the back yard to the property line. So the 80x80 garden plot has little effect. Behind us to the west are some older homes on 1.5 to 2.0 acre plots. They all sit on a private gravel lane, with a couple of old homes right on the lane, less than 10' away. Thankfully this has stopped the developers. They would have to purchase the property the private lane is situated on, the adjacent houses to demolish, plus the property behind us to both demolish and develop. I don't think the numbers have added up, particularly since we are in the older section of Mason so the surroundings will not support uber-upscale property.

But I still go back to my prior post. Use those online mapping tools to beome familiar with Loveland and its surroundings. Google Earth is a great tool, Use It!
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Old 11-15-2013, 09:31 PM
 
Location: Atlanta, GA
52 posts, read 147,406 times
Reputation: 37
Thank you so much for your suggestions! I will check out Little Miami River Area, Hamilton, Warren, and Clermont Counties, Loveland and Milford areas.

kjbrill - your place sounds lovely! I hope you enjoy it for another 37 years - that is really a shame about Madeira, but towns do those sort of things! I hope they don't have the same laws for a back yard.

OhioGirl - I don't know how you pulled off 3 hens and a garden in such a small spot - but well done!!

Thanks again
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Old 11-16-2013, 06:10 AM
 
Location: Mason, OH
9,259 posts, read 14,144,882 times
Reputation: 1928
OP ...
There are apparently some people who want a certain environment regardless of what is around it. I mentioned earlier there was a property behind us which had cows when we first moved here. They sold off some of the property over the years. The land to the west was combined with a paid fishing lake bought by the City of Mason and turned into a public park. The farm property to the south was also purchased by the City and is now the site of the Mason Middle, High Schools, Community Center, Municipal Center, and another park where the municipal swimming pool and athletic fields are located.

The original owners of the property to our rear have passed on. For a number of years the old man had a Ford Tractor, gang plow, disc, harrow, and bushhog. Right off our back corner was a field I estimate at about 4 acres, still there. Every spring when I saw him out plowing it I would hang around the fence. He would ask if I would like my garden plot plowed, would I? About 6 passes with that gang plow and it was plowed. He then would come back later and disc it when he disced the field. During the spring and summer they had a lot of family members come and weed and cultivate basically a 4 acre vegetable garden. You can grow a lot of stuff on 4 acres.

We got the word this past spring the heirs finally sold the property. They offered it to the City but were told currently there was no money to acquire additional park land. But suddenly I see a whole crew of people on the property, clearing out all of the underbrush from along the fence lines, and basically tidying up. The next thing was the demolishing of the original house. Then my next door neighbor tells me the purchaser intends to build a $800,000 house on the property - What! I estimate there is somewhere around 8 acres there. We are all anxious to find out who this mystery person is. The papers thus far filed are all through subsidiary corporations.

You and I are obviously not active in these same financial circles.
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