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Old 01-18-2014, 06:12 AM
Location: St. James Plantation
10 posts, read 20,537 times
Reputation: 14


Originally Posted by ExCodder View Post

My wife and I are planning to retire to Coastal NC from Massachusetts and have been looking at St. James Plantation, reason being even though we are NOT golfers, we love the idea that St.James has its own Marina, where we plan to rack-store our boat, so we don't have to trailer it to the water.

Looking for opinions, input, suggestions, comments about these topics:
1. Other 55+ communities in the Wilmington area
2. St. James community for a non-golfer
3. St. James costs of living for a non-golfer
4. Boating around St. James
5. Opinions and comments about the St. James Marina
6. Any other useful input or suggestions

We are planning to visit for the 1st time the week of Oct 8 and would like to meet other non-golfers at St. James for coffee and conversation.

Look forward to meeting new friends,

Robert & Lise
Hello Excodder... My wife and I (N.Y.C.) purchased a lot in Regency Lake, which is one of sections in St. James. I wanted to be near the gate and away from flood zone. My wife and I searched along the coast for our perfect new world and yes, we purchased a lot in St. James to build our new home. Our requirement was:

0-Awwway from any city.
1-Well protected Marina with wet slip accommodation and fuel.
2-Fishing in the area must be good to excellent.
3-With in 1 hr from city activities. Number of restaurants, movies, theaters etc.
4-Health of its HOA.
5-Well established, not a new community.
6-Did I say awwwway from any city?
7-Away from flood zone "A"
8-I wanted to be close to the main gate. Why? St. James takes up acreage and drive can take you 15-20 minutes to get out of main gate. I was told that St. James is very strict about speeding within the community. (It is a good thing)

Only item I was worried was #6, flood zone. I've review the Brunswick County GIS and isolated the area away from any flood zone. Regency Lake is where I purchased my lot. It is away from flood zone and really close to the main gate..

As for your needs...
1-55+...as per City Data, average age in St. James are in the mid 60s, but as far as I am concern any community needs mind of all ages to make it work.
2- I am not a golfer and I am not looking for more hobbies. St. James has all sorts of clubs that you can join. Most likely, I'll join the Fishing club and Motorcycle club.
3-As for the cost of living, I am not sure what you mean, but HOA for the entire Community(St. James as a whole) is around $100 per month, but I'll be paying close to $300 per month for lawn maitanance and HOA for Regency Lake. For me it is well worth it. I retired to enjoy my time, not to be tied up with lawn care. If I am wrong, some one can correct me, but I believe HOA fees varies depend on which section of St. James you live. Each section has its own Property Owners Association as well as its own HOA fees.
4-As for boating, I do not have any boating experience around Wilmington area, but it is an adventure.
5-Marina is a 1st class marina with reasonable fees. Docks are well made, but I only wished that fingers were longer to avoid securing your bow to a piling. Someone also said fuel prices are one of cheapest in the area??? We'll see.
6-You will read all sorts of opinion, pros and con for this subject, but only way you can be sure for yourself is for you to visit many communities and decide which one is best for you.

Anyway... good luck with your new adventure, where ever it'll take you.
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Old 01-18-2014, 11:19 AM
Location: New Jersey
383 posts, read 743,286 times
Reputation: 214

Have you built your home? If not, when do you plan to build? I agree with all points stated above. SJP is a great place.

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Old 01-18-2014, 03:08 PM
Location: St. James Plantation
10 posts, read 20,537 times
Reputation: 14
PonyPride... I was planing to move in 2013, but our 6 yr old grandson wanted to visit NYC and see snow. I told him not to get his hopes up because snow in Dec is not likely... well, he proved me wrong. Anyway, we are planing to sell our home here right after we return from our winter getaway. I hope to be moved into St. James by the end of the year.
I am planing to rent for the first year and see if everything is to our liking. I'll spend our first six month there and if everything goes ok, I will give my builder the ok to build. I am looking for a 2-3 bedroom home who will allow us to bring our 3 kitties. If you know someone, please let me know. It is not easy to find someone willing to rent with pets.
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Old 01-29-2014, 02:28 PM
Location: Ocean Isle Beach
6 posts, read 12,091 times
Reputation: 27
My wife and I are from the Boston area too (North Andover). We moved to Brunswick country just over a year and half ago (Aug 2012) and have never been happier. We looked at St James, as well as many other area plantations and in the end choose not to go to St James for a couple of reasons. We are big boaters and love fishing. We have no interest in Golf so that wasn't a factor. The St James marina was a huge + for us but we found that there are many really nice plantations within minutes of deep water protected marinas with fast easy access to the Atlantic. After comparing the HOA's POA's and mandatory dining fees at St James we choose to move to the Ocean Isle Beach area and found Sunset Ridge and Ocean Ridge to be two perfect plantations to choose from. Sunset Ridge is beautiful and very budget friendly (homes started in the 200s and went to the mid 300's with nice views, we used a site called homesforsalesunsetridge.com and got a great information package from the developer, Bill Clark).

Ocean Ridge Plantation (they also have a site where you can get all their information, I believe it is called homesforsaleoceanridge.com) on the other hand is considered to be the areas top plantation and has even been voted one of America's top 100 places to live. The amenities at Ocean Ridge are second to none in my opinion with an incredible beach house right on Sunset Beach and resort style indoor and outdoor pools ETC. The homes are a little more pricy starting at around $325K and going all the way up to close to the 1 million dollar mark. With Ocean Isle Beach Marina only a 5 to 7 minute drive from either of these two plantations, it was an easy pick for us once comparing the tax rates, HOA's and POA's to St James. (neither Sunset Ridge or Ocean Ridge plantation have a dining minimum like St James Plantation does).

Leaving Boston was a big decision for us and finding a plantation that was just right for us took some work and a couple of visits to the area but thanks to our very knowledgeable real estate agent, the transition went smoothly and we love the Ocean Isle Beach area and the marina (and the fishing IS JUST AWESOME and the fishing grounds can be reached in just 10 to 15 minutes on our 30' powerboat)....
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Old 02-07-2014, 04:51 PM
10 posts, read 19,292 times
Reputation: 24
Default Update on the possible move to SJP from NJ

Hello all...we finally got down to SJP in December and I agree, the homes there are stunning. We toured several that I could move into tomorrow! However, we've decided to continue our search since the fees for participation in the social aspect (golf, beach club, pool) was much higher than we are comfortable with. Thank you to everyone who helped answer my many questions! Melissa
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