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Old 07-10-2007, 04:30 PM
 
24 posts, read 127,065 times
Reputation: 13

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Hey-
I am considering relocation from a suburb of Baltimore, MD.

So, I have a really important question. The posts about busy roads, home prices, schools, and other comments in here... WOULD these still hold true when comparing Wilmington to a big, very expensive, over-populated, and crime ridden city like Baltimore?

We don't have any safe roads. And if I leave my home, every road is congested and full of red lights. And here, there are no back roads or undeveloped areas. Everything is. Our beltway and expressway are always bumper to bumper for the three hours surrounding rush hour. My ex-husband commutes from Rockville, MD and what should be an hour's commute takes three unless he travels during off-peak hours. So, is that what Wilmington is like or is it better? Also, all of our main roads sound like the description of College Rd and other parts of Wilmington... strip mall after strip mall someone said? (I've never known anything else.)

Our home prices are at least twice what yours are. A modest townhouse here is $350,000. A single family is $400,000 and above. I live in a good area, but even homes in lesser areas still maintain prices like these.

Wilmington was named by a real estate/investment publication as one of the top areas to invest in with an appreciation rate of 34.5%. (it was #7) At what appear to reasonable home prices (coming from baltimore...) that is a great rate.

I am looking at some new homes and town homes that are listed as being in the Monkey Junction area. What about that?

And I had a comment about trying Brunswick County instead, but have no idea about that.

Last thing.... I don't want seclusion or to be 30 minutes from shopping and other activities with a teenager who needs to get out. But I don't want mayhem either.

The hurricanes concern me. Although I am used to trees falling and power outages (sometimes long) because of the location of my home here. I am guessing you will say that is nothing. (And we have big snowstorms here... how about that as a trade off? We have constant school delays and closings for that and businesses and even local and national government shuts down for that...) Again, never experienced a hurricane... so....

Thanks for any and all help.
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Old 07-11-2007, 02:46 PM
 
Location: Summerville
890 posts, read 3,966,982 times
Reputation: 379
I have heard that the developers and certain real estate investors in Wilmington pretty much have the City Council in their back pocket. Which has led to rapid over development of the area. They have promoted Wilmington in anyway they can, so take that however you want to see it. All I can tell you is I lived in Wilmington for 11 years and owned three different homes and I never had any great appreciation on any of them. In fact, the appreciation pretty much sucked. Back in 2003 Wilmington did experience a real estate boom and this boosted home prices, but the real estate bubble busted in 2006. I would not count on making a 34.5% annual appreciation in todays market. I watch the real estate market in Wilmington and home prices have come down and are sitting longer.

I have lived in Baltimore myself, in fact I moved from Baltimore to Wilmington back in 1992. Back then Wilmington was just starting to develop and traffic was bearable, nothing like it is today. You have to remember Wilmington does not have an interstate system running through it like Baltimore does. You must take the local roads to get around. Traffic is congested normally and when the tourists come in the summer and especially on holidays it gets downright dangerous. I believe Wilmington is #2 for the most dangerous roads in NC.

Monkey Junction is a popular area. There are a lot of neighborhoods that have been built out that way over the last 10 years. Shopping and restaurants are close by. You couldn't go wrong buying in this area.

Hurricanes? Went through 6 of them there. Lost a roof, a fence and was dropped by my insurance carrier once. What can I say? It is a fact of living on the coast. Wilmington kinda sticks out a little and the way that it is positioned and the way hurricanes are steered up the coast Wilmington seems to attract more of them.

I'm not going to tell you to move or not to move to Wilmington. You need to visit it yourself and spend some time there driving around and make your own decision. Brunswick county is located on the other side of the Cape Fear River over the bridge. It is an area that has grown significantly over the last 5 years and is an alternative to living in busy Wilmington. I don't know how much longer it is going to stay that way though with the rate it is growing too. Hope this answered some questions.

Oh, you might want to be sure and check out the crime stats. Wilmington unfortunately does have a high crime rate.
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Old 07-13-2007, 03:45 PM
 
24 posts, read 127,065 times
Reputation: 13
Thanks!
Based on your comments, I will keep considering this move. You especially helped me with comments about Monkey Junction and Brunswick CO. I will check into both. I will consider, though, the road safety and crime rates in Wilmington. (I had already checked the crime rates, and the rate for Rape and Property Crimes there were higher than already troubled Baltimore.) All of these are especially important if I am raising a teenage daughter.

About Brunswick County- it has an excellent school for my daughter that offers advanced courses and then up to 60 college credits completed in the final two years of high school. This is a positive. A negative is that when I checked hurricane data, some areas of that county seem to get hit worse and more frequently than Wilmington.

I am having a hard time balancing these issues. I am thinking that year round crime rates and unsafe roads outweigh seasonal weather. But ,what do you think:?
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Old 07-14-2007, 10:51 PM
 
Location: Wilmington, NC
69 posts, read 424,558 times
Reputation: 35
Hi,

I wanted to touch on the subject of the Early College High School you are speaking of in Brunswick County. I just wanted to let you know that New Hanover County has two of those Early College High Schools. One is Wilmington Early College High School that is just opening this year and the students will recieve an Associates Degree from Cape Fear Community College along with their high school diploma. The other is Isaac Bear Early College High School and they are affiliated with UNCW and the students can get up to 60 credits towards their college diploma there. They are all great programs so I hope your daughter can go to one of them. I am a school counselor currently looking in the districts and have done some talking with the schools. They are all great places. Good luck!
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Old 07-15-2007, 01:48 PM
 
25 posts, read 118,933 times
Reputation: 22
Default Wilmington Info.

Read Please help!!!Info on Wilmington schools anyone? for info. on schools and crime. I don't know what your job situation is, but you would want to have one before you came here. Also, check out Hampstead area. Good schools, low crime, cheaper housing, but quickly growing area. Again, you would want to work from home or have a job on the northeast side of Wilmington. I personally don't like the Monkey Junction area of Wilmington. It's way to crowded for me, but pretty much all of Wilmington is becoming that way. I'm happy to answer any other questions that I can for you.
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Old 07-15-2007, 03:41 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
122 posts, read 429,341 times
Reputation: 82
Quote:
Originally Posted by shwebs View Post
Read Please help!!!Info on Wilmington schools anyone? for info. on schools and crime. I don't know what your job situation is, but you would want to have one before you came here. Also, check out Hampstead area. Good schools, low crime, cheaper housing, but quickly growing area. Again, you would want to work from home or have a job on the northeast side of Wilmington. I personally don't like the Monkey Junction area of Wilmington. It's way to crowded for me, but pretty much all of Wilmington is becoming that way. I'm happy to answer any other questions that I can for you.
I have friends that moved here from Baltimore (actually Glen Burnie to be exact) about 5 years ago & they still love it. But what the poster quoted above is true. You definitely need to already have a job lined up before moving AND you must keep in mind that if your new job turns out to be a bad fit, there are not many alternatives if you are white collar. There are lots of service industry jobs, but white collar/professional jobs here are far and few between. Also remember that the pay scales here are less than other N.C. cities such as Charlotte or Raleigh. (We locals call it the "beach tax".)
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