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Old 05-03-2007, 11:26 PM
 
Location: So. California
17 posts, read 71,677 times
Reputation: 14

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Today, we just arrived back from our visit in Colorado Springs. We arrived at night due to flight delays, so we couldn't see anything. Heard we missed the hail though. The next day, I couldn't see the mountains because of the fog!

We were in and out of fog and rain all day. I did get a glimpse of the mountains for a very short time right around dinner time...never was able to see the top of Pikes Peak. I heard that today, Thursday was supposed to be nice after we left. Talk about bad timing!

We were able to "see" over 20 homes on our visit. We found some very lovely homes in the 350K max range that we were looking at, but....there was always a glitch. Too much work to be done inside...carpets, adding fence, etc...One of the biggest problems were the houses we looked at were too close to the freeway or a major street with too much noise. Or no privacy in the back yards due to covenant rules with fencing.

This is what I discovered. I do like the Briargate area, and I also like the N/W area. I saw a lot of beautiful parks and trails. Jackson Creek houses in Monument are beautiful, but there is no privacy in the back yards because you can only have post and rail fence...the neighbors house in the back was looking right down on the house below. I also realized that we are going to have to spend more then 350K to get what we want.

I found 2 houses in the Briargate area that I would have moved into today, but my husband didn't like them. He found a house that he loved, but I didn't. Yikes! This is going to be a long process and cost more than I had hoped.

COS does have lots of great stores and restaurants. They had 2 Mimi's Cafes! I love that place and thought it was only out here in CA. I found a great taco shop called Albertacos on the N/W side. GREAT carne asada tacos like they make in San Diego. There were even Mexicans working and cooking in the shop.

I wish I could have seen the mountains and view while I was there...maybe next time! Overall, I think I will like COS, but the houses are not as inexpensive as I had hoped....but, still a bargain compared to CA homes!
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Old 05-03-2007, 11:38 PM
 
Location: Lakewood, CO
353 posts, read 355,255 times
Reputation: 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by aussielover View Post
Today, we just arrived back from our visit in Colorado Springs. We arrived at night due to flight delays, so we couldn't see anything. Heard we missed the hail though. The next day, I couldn't see the mountains because of the fog!

We were in and out of fog and rain all day. I did get a glimpse of the mountains for a very short time right around dinner time...never was able to see the top of Pikes Peak. I heard that today, Thursday was supposed to be nice after we left. Talk about bad timing!

We were able to "see" over 20 homes on our visit. We found some very lovely homes in the 350K max range that we were looking at, but....there was always a glitch. Too much work to be done inside...carpets, adding fence, etc...One of the biggest problems were the houses we looked at were too close to the freeway or a major street with too much noise. Or no privacy in the back yards due to covenant rules with fencing.

This is what I discovered. I do like the Briargate area, and I also like the N/W area. I saw a lot of beautiful parks and trails. Jackson Creek houses in Monument are beautiful, but there is no privacy in the back yards because you can only have post and rail fence...the neighbors house in the back was looking right down on the house below. I also realized that we are going to have to spend more then 350K to get what we want.

I found 2 houses in the Briargate area that I would have moved into today, but my husband didn't like them. He found a house that he loved, but I didn't. Yikes! This is going to be a long process and cost more than I had hoped.

COS does have lots of great stores and restaurants. They had 2 Mimi's Cafes! I love that place and thought it was only out here in CA. I found a great taco shop called Albertacos on the N/W side. GREAT carne asada tacos like they make in San Diego. There were even Mexicans working and cooking in the shop.

I wish I could have seen the mountains and view while I was there...maybe next time! Overall, I think I will like COS, but the houses are not as inexpensive as I had hoped....but, still a bargain compared to CA homes!
I'm sorry you had a rough first encounter...

When the frontiersmen came to Coloardo they were sure that they had found the closest thing to heaven. That's why Kathy Bates wrote "America the Beautiful" atop Pikes Peak. She was quite sure that looking down on the Front Range that God really had shed his grace on thee.

But times have changed and the ills of modernity have reached even the most idyllic of locals. With that said, Colorado Springs is one of the finest communities out there and it is one of the few places where a family can really thrive in the fullest sense of the word. It's a family-friendly place with a lovely scenery.

Despite your woes I think Briargate is top-notch. Great neighborhood, great people, great location. There may be a speed bump or two along the way but once you find your home and settle in you'll find that Colorado Springs will be a place in which you can kick off your shoes and stay awhile.

And as far as weather goes...beware. It can get nasty. But most of the time it is crystal-clear blue skies with a brilliant sunshine. Just keep your umbrella, scarf, and boots hand--preferably all at the same time.
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Old 05-04-2007, 01:58 AM
 
95 posts, read 445,215 times
Reputation: 102
Next time you visit a place, lower your expectations and you won't be disappointed. Also, shout-out to see their “tarjeta verde” and see who stays in the restaurant. It's kinda' funny...
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Old 05-04-2007, 02:26 AM
 
11,715 posts, read 35,074,641 times
Reputation: 7466
Quote:
Originally Posted by FeelGood View Post
Next time you visit a place, lower your expectations and you won't be disappointed. Also, shout-out to see their “tarjeta verde” and see who stays in the restaurant. It's kinda' funny...
I think I'd get arrested for some hate crime if I tried that here.
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Old 05-04-2007, 08:04 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs
4,344 posts, read 4,385,285 times
Reputation: 15366
Default Decision Making Process

It's true, some covenants don't allow fences. That's incompatible with having a dog, in my experience.

When you look to buy anything, it's beneficial to separate your "Musts" from your "Wants". For example, a "Must" might be a price limit, boundary fence allowed, un-proximity to busy street. Don't waste time looking at houses that fail your "Must" list.

Make a list of your "Wants" and prioritize the list. For example, you may want a 3-car garage, but could live with a 2 car.

Select the home that meets all your musts, and as many of your highest priority wants as possible. Don't even look at homes that fail your must list.

This is such a simple and intuitive process, but when we were looking, I had to go through several Realtors until I found one who could understand it.
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Old 05-04-2007, 08:09 AM
 
Location: Avondale, AZ
1,207 posts, read 4,145,626 times
Reputation: 913
Quote:
I found a great taco shop called Albertacos on the N/W side. GREAT carne asada tacos like they make in San Diego. There were even Mexicans working and cooking in the shop.
Aussielover- We used to live in San Marcos and I could not believe how similar this Albertaco was to all the 'insert a name'-taco's that are in SD. The menu, prices, decor, and staff are lifted right out of CA .
The weather here has been a bit gloomy, but the moisture will help. I see you looked at Jackson Creek and Briargate areas. Did you look in any other areas of Monument. We live in Woodmor because it has trees and larger lots. We felt that Jackson Creek and Briargate, while very nice, felt too much like a CA subdivision. A house down our street sold a couple of months ago for 292k. I think it's around 2600 square ft on half acre treed lot.
We miss San Diego and visit at least twice a year, but have never regreted moving away. Good luck on your search.
Paul
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Old 05-04-2007, 09:50 AM
 
Location: Colorado
431 posts, read 2,504,458 times
Reputation: 212
Quote:
Originally Posted by aussielover View Post
Today, we just arrived back from our visit in Colorado Springs. We arrived at night due to flight delays, so we couldn't see anything. Heard we missed the hail though. The next day, I couldn't see the mountains because of the fog!

We were in and out of fog and rain all day. I did get a glimpse of the mountains for a very short time right around dinner time...never was able to see the top of Pikes Peak. I heard that today, Thursday was supposed to be nice after we left. Talk about bad timing!

We were able to "see" over 20 homes on our visit. We found some very lovely homes in the 350K max range that we were looking at, but....there was always a glitch. Too much work to be done inside...carpets, adding fence, etc...One of the biggest problems were the houses we looked at were too close to the freeway or a major street with too much noise. Or no privacy in the back yards due to covenant rules with fencing.

This is what I discovered. I do like the Briargate area, and I also like the N/W area. I saw a lot of beautiful parks and trails. Jackson Creek houses in Monument are beautiful, but there is no privacy in the back yards because you can only have post and rail fence...the neighbors house in the back was looking right down on the house below. I also realized that we are going to have to spend more then 350K to get what we want.

I found 2 houses in the Briargate area that I would have moved into today, but my husband didn't like them. He found a house that he loved, but I didn't. Yikes! This is going to be a long process and cost more than I had hoped.

COS does have lots of great stores and restaurants. They had 2 Mimi's Cafes! I love that place and thought it was only out here in CA. I found a great taco shop called Albertacos on the N/W side. GREAT carne asada tacos like they make in San Diego. There were even Mexicans working and cooking in the shop.

I wish I could have seen the mountains and view while I was there...maybe next time! Overall, I think I will like COS, but the houses are not as inexpensive as I had hoped....but, still a bargain compared to CA homes!
Did you look in the old Broadmoor area? I know it is more expensive but there are some lovey older homes and some younger too that go for around that price. I do not live there nor am I checking out prices but I know my daughter and son-in-law found one. But they were in the Springs so they could look and bug the real estates people daily. Also they had the financing in hand.
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Old 05-04-2007, 02:19 PM
 
59 posts, read 305,510 times
Reputation: 28
Hello,

You are just like us! Our price limit is 375 or so and we have our wants. We want a open feel and a view.

Good luck!

CalifCheryl
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Old 05-04-2007, 09:40 PM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,346 posts, read 80,914,150 times
Reputation: 17413
Hi Aussielover,

The ONLY thing Simi has over COS is weather. I lived in Moorpark, Thousand Oaks, and the San Fernando Valley for 45 years. Mugu may be alive now and it may be alive in ten years but it is stuck out there by itself. Very few employment opportunities. Extremely expensive housing out there in Simi. Hopefully you have some equity to use on a move to a lower priced housing marked. This is a major benefit.

Nobody ever says "Gee, I want to raise my kids in Southern California!"

Colorado Springs, for aerospace-defense engineers like your husband and me, is really moving in the right direction. Another place to consider is Huntsville, AL (yes muggy in the summer but otherwise HSV is THE most underrated city in the US); COS is by far #1 for the aggregate of jobs, decent housing prices, culture, weather, and quality of life. HSV has got to be in the top five.

People will argue about California weather, NY culture, Texas land prices, Florida and Arizona winters, and Seattle eclectics. However when a person considers day to day living (get up, shower, drive to work, do the office, drive home, eat dinner, go online, go to bed...repeat for 35 years), those things don't matter that much.

We (and we're basically day to day worker bees) found that living in a mid sized town WITH JOBS (critical) blows away any advantages to living in an expensive coastal city that has the same amount of per-capita jobs. When you think about it, most of us don't often go to the beach, eat at obscure ethnic restaurants, visit leading edge museums, or attend the ultra popular concerts. Maybe the movie stars do. Maybe we are influenced by them? Is it worth it?
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Old 05-05-2007, 01:09 PM
 
Location: So. California
17 posts, read 71,677 times
Reputation: 14
Thanks everyone for your responses. Don't get me wrong, I did like what I did see. :-) My expectations were high as far as seeing the beautiful Front Range and Pikes Peak...that really was my biggest disappointment because of the fog. I liked the houses that I did see, but we could only fit in so much on one visit. We will be back after my son gets out of school next month. This time we'll drive and take our time! We will have to check out more areas next time.

We do have some equity in our house, would have had more if we didn't have to do 110K work on an older house....that's one of the reasons we'd like to walk into the "perfect" house. We will have to decide what is a "must" and what is a "want"...and hopefully they will be the same! For example, a 3 car garage is not a must for me, but is for my husband...I could care less about the garage! :-)

California is going to be hard to leave, there are no two ways about it. I know I'll be homesick and weathersick for quite awhile. But, I'm adaptable...heck, I lived in Guam for 2 years!

I'm hoping to find a realtor that will do all of that pre-sorting stuff for us. She knows if it's close to a busy road or not, she should know about the fencing. Is that too much to ask of a realtor to check out the houses first, especially when we are coming from such a far distance? Maybe she will have a better idea now that she has met with us.

Again, thanks for the responses. I'm still looking forward to seeing how beautiful it is out there!
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