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Thread summary:

Moving to North Carolina: buy house, condo, contractor, real estate, market, rental.

 
Old 11-16-2008, 05:13 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
2 posts, read 4,643 times
Reputation: 12

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I am so happy I found this forum. In advance, thank you all you locals that contribute here, I've read many posts and am thrilled with the information. My husband and I are relocating to NC very soon (53 & 50 y.o.) Had enough of the snow and ice. My husband is not ready to retire (neither am I), the kids are grown and it's time to enjoy life and we have both decided on NC. He took a buy out from AT&T last year (30 years of service) so he's looking into telecom work there. That's his job...so far so good, prospects on the brink of reality. My job is to find out where we are going to live. Most likely work will be in Wilmington or that general area. For the most part we've live in the country, but have come to love the beach (travelled to Key West 5 times this past year & love it, but don't love the prices)...so we will be half-backs.

We will probably want to rent for 6 months to get a feel for the areas and house prices before we buy. So, I have 2 questions I hope you all might be able to help me with.

1st - where would be a good place to rent (condo, house or apartment) that is reasonable for about 6 months within 45 drive to Wilmington. I hate paying rent, but I think it 's a more reasonable way to do this. We don't want to be right on the beach, but we also don't want to drive 2 hours to get there.

2nd - where is a good location to start looking for a house. We unfortunately aren't going to make as much profit on our house here in Connecticut from the sale, so we will be looking in the under $200K range. It's just the 2 of us (and a Chow dog), but would like to have atleast a patio or deck, possibly a yard, not too close to the city life, but not too far away. We are use to driving 1/2 hour to the nearest indoor mall though. I know I'm being general, but this is a general kind of inquiry.

Any ideas or suggestions? I would so appreciate it. I'm thinking of taking a trip down there in the next 3 weeks to check out the area before the actual move. With the holidays coming up I'm kinda in a bit of a time pickle. Thanks! Marie
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Old 11-16-2008, 08:21 PM
LLN
 
Location: Upstairs closet
4,982 posts, read 8,766,921 times
Reputation: 6451
Y'all might want to consider living near either Camp Lejeune/New River MCAS at (Jacksonville) or MCAS Cherry Point (Havelock/New Bern/Newport/Morehead City).

Both bases have technical contractors and the Marines are a growth industry here in Eastern NC.

With the flexibility of 30 - 45 minutes to the beach, you have whole COUNTIES up this way that you can look at to find a place that will meet your needs.

lln
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Old 11-17-2008, 12:35 PM
 
Location: Cape Carteret, NC
713 posts, read 3,476,776 times
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Smile If you decide on the Jacksonville area

There are plenty of homes in the price range where you are looking. Jacksonville, because of increase in the number of Marines, is one of the stronger real estate markets around. A recent television news story mentioned that lower priced homes sell within 30 days.

Jacksonville was recently named by Businessweek as the best place in NC to raise children.

Jacksonville and surrounding areas are not Wilmington. Jacksonville when measured by average age is also the youngest city in the US.

There are a number of nice towns along Route 17 from Jacksonville to Wilmington. I have seen a number of people mention Hampstead. It is probably about one hour driving time from Jacksonville to Wilmington.

We live on the other side of Jacksonville in the Swansboro-Cape Carteret-Emerald Isle area. We are about thirty minutes from Jacksonville depending exactly where you live.

We are a beach area so there are plenty of rentals and prices are reasonable. I would expect in our area you could find something in the $900-$1,100 per month range depending on how close to the beach you want to be.

There is a indoor mall in Jacksonville, but again it is not Wilmington. Having an indoor mall is not as big a deal down here since we typically have good weather most of the year.

Since you are from Connecticut, you might enjoy a visit to our restored old fishing villages as you figuring out where you want to live.

Beaufort would be a good place to start and a great place to spend a night. There is lots to do in the area. You could then take a leisurely drive down the beach from Atlantic Beach to Emerald Isle and possibly spend another night in the Swansboro area before heading to Jacksonville and Wilmington.

I am not an expert on the area from Jacksonville to Wilmington since mostly I just pass through it, but I do write a lot about the Crystal Coast, home of Beaufort, Morehead City, Emerald Isle, Cape Carteret, Cedar Point, and Swansboro.

My blog is currently featuring a post, What I love about Carteret County. There are over forty articles there including one, Ten ways Carteret County met our needs.

Much of the climate and lifestyle information would be similar to the area between Jacksonville and Wilmington.

The North Carolina Coast is a great place to live. We enjoy the beach all year.

Last edited by dsobotta; 11-17-2008 at 12:36 PM.. Reason: changed word
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Old 11-17-2008, 01:41 PM
 
116 posts, read 490,052 times
Reputation: 84
Hi Ed,

The area south of Wilmington is a popular area for families and has many safe and friendly neighborhoods. It is a growing area with new retail and restaurants opening on a regular basis.

If you look in the Myrtle Grove (Monkey Junction) area you will find properties in your price range. You would be about 10 minutes to Carolina Beach and 15 to Wrightsville Beach. Downtown would be about 10 minutes or so.

For your searches, try using area codes 28409 and 28412.

Best of Luck!
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Old 11-20-2008, 04:50 AM
 
Location: Connecticut
2 posts, read 4,643 times
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Thanks y'all (that's how you say it, right?) Well, since I'm pretty anal about researching things and there's sooo much to cover down in that area I'm pretty much pulling the hair out of my head by now. My husband got an offer to transfer to the Verizon in Wilmington yesterday, so he has a job waiting for him. We've never moved out of our state and this has become quite the daunting experience since there's so much to look at and it's hard to get a handle on property values and areas in NC. Obviously I can't go by the price range in CT to decipher value since our modest ranch here will probably sell for $250K and it is not top of the line by any definition. So you can imagine, I see a price tage of $150K and I think "must be a dump or in a bad location", which I know probably isn't the case at all.

What we're looking for in an area is -

Up to a 30 min. drive to Wilmington.
Up to a 30 min. drive to beaches.
Quiet neighborhood, family type, not so close that you can shake hands with your neighbor out your window.
2 maybe 3 bedrooms (but not necessary since our children are adults)

I have so appreciated your responses and input. One of the reasons we are moving down that way (in addition to it being a great opportunity for us) is because we had a major financial disaster a couple years ago that we have been trying to dig our way out of, slowly but surely. So, one of the factors that have lead us to selling and moving is if we make some profit on our house here, we can, hopefully, still be able to buy in NC and pay off our debt. At 53 and 50 is pretty scarry when retirement is breathing down the back of your neck. Fortunately my husband has a good job waiting for him in NC so that's a relief. I guess what I'm saying is we are trying/hoping we will be able to buy a home down there that we can afford.

As for work for myself, my corporate skills are from the 80's/90's (asst. mgr.of Marriott Hotels) and more recently I owned my own business here (natural medicinary - most people would categorize it as a health food store, but my business was more in line with professional natural medicine, different animal entirely), so my job opportunities I think will be hard pressed. I'm a little concerned about myself being able to get a job...they say there's no descrimination, but let's face it, I'm 53.

I don't know why I'm rambling on about all this, but maybe it will give y'all a better feel for what I'm looking for down there.

Anyway, any leads, opportunities, info or feedback is greatly appreciated (while I pull out the last few strands of hair I have left on my head). Thank you so much. Marie (and Ed)
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Old 11-20-2008, 08:05 AM
 
22,769 posts, read 26,264,477 times
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It sounds like y'all have a good plan. You can probably be more specific in your needs/wants. You have many options that are within 30 min of Wilmington and 30 min of the beaches. If you work in Wilmington, my advice is to not live west of the Cape Fear River, or north of MLK.

Rents are funny here. The vast majority of rentals you see are these vinyl village condos, townhomes and aparments, close to heavy traffic and strip malls. Look a little deeper, and for very similar prices you can rent your own single-family house, or an historic apartment in a better part of downtown, or a place on Wrightsville, Kure, or Carolina Beach.

I'm a prospective buyer in your price range, so feel free to send me a direct message if you have questions. Wilmington really is a patchwork of development, and there's a huge variety of people and neighborhoods for a small city like this.
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Old 11-21-2008, 11:45 AM
 
Location: wilmington
70 posts, read 162,071 times
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EdMarie, Welcome to our neck of the woods. I've lived in Wilmington for over 30 years. You and I are in the same age bracket. I am a realtor in Wilm. also so I really feel I know the area. We have seen home prices start to fall here. You can get a great deal for a home with a good sized yard for prices in the $170-190,000 range, sometimes lower. Look in the 28411, 28409, and 28429 zips also. I would be happy to tell you the "insider " road shortcuts to get you through evening traffic.(5-6pm can be a travel nightmare) You can e-mail me directly at yevans@charter.net if you need anything.
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Old 09-24-2010, 10:18 AM
 
14 posts, read 25,263 times
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Verona (south Jacksonville) or Holly Ridge ar egood choices, close enough to shopping and such but far enough to be quiet and low crime. House prices in these area are lower then in Sneads Ferry or Wilmington but 20- 30 minutes gets you to the beach :-)

Verona, North Carolina - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 09-26-2010, 07:28 PM
 
3,323 posts, read 5,195,973 times
Reputation: 2359
Quote:
Originally Posted by LLN View Post
Y'all might want to consider living near either Camp Lejeune/New River MCAS at (Jacksonville) or MCAS Cherry Point (Havelock/New Bern/Newport/Morehead City).

Both bases have technical contractors and the Marines are a growth industry here in Eastern NC.

With the flexibility of 30 - 45 minutes to the beach, you have whole COUNTIES up this way that you can look at to find a place that will meet your needs.

lln
Actually I wouldn't look past Fort Bragg either/Pope either. After the last BRAC hearing (or whatever they are called), Bragg racked up a few new things. They will be growing at a crazy rate coming up soon.
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Old 09-27-2010, 06:40 AM
 
291 posts, read 767,400 times
Reputation: 143
I would take the time to look at Hampstead - use the search feature on this forum to find info about it and send me a private message if there are any specifics you need answered....I am not a realtor, so have "no dog in this hunt!" Unfortunately there aren't statistics on city-data about Hampstead because we are unincorporated, but from everything you have said, I think you might enjoy this area....and it is close enough to both Wilmington and the Topsail Island beaches that you can have the best of both worlds!
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