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Old 01-01-2013, 09:24 PM
 
Location: Western NC
119 posts, read 125,116 times
Reputation: 93

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I have only been back home 3 times since 98. Granted I don't make a lot of money, but it does cost a lot. Different members of my family have come to visit, my sister-twice, my aunt and uncle-once, and my niece-once. That is all.

I agree with jp03 on the schooling part. Education is not the same in the south as it is in the north. Most of the people who do live in Asheville are weathy and that is what makes it so expensive to live here.
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Old 01-03-2013, 01:11 PM
 
Location: Conn.
780 posts, read 838,560 times
Reputation: 629
Thumbs up No place is perfect

My working days are over and for retirement I have pretty much decided on Delaware. Not too hot in the summer, no sales tax, very low property taxes, no property tax on vehicles (or boats or RV's either), no income tax on Social Security income or pensions and $12,500 of investment income per year exempt from income tax. The winters are a little warmer than here and with a little less snow. With the recent cold and snow storm, it is tempting to consider a warmer place, but that comes with hotter summers and maybe not as low a cost of living. Plus houses in Delaware, in 55+ communities like I plan to buy into, are higher than states further south. I have considered this all from all angles; coastal areas further south have nice beaches, but houses too expensive and probably insurance is too. Further inland, no beaches nearby and maybe hotter, plus I like to get to the beach sometimes. So, all in all, I think Delaware is the place for me. Maybe not for everyone - but that is a good thing, since it is a small state, so everyone can't move there.

A former neighbor of mine moved to Arizona last year, for family reasons. All summer, when we spoke on the phone, she said it was 110+ degrees and she could not even go outside. She is fairskinned and not tolerant of heat, even in CT. Now she is ecstatic about the weather there, but when we are enjoying our summer, she will be stuck inside again. So bottom line, no place is perfect; you just have to find the place that suits you best and be happy.
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Old 01-03-2013, 04:14 PM
 
9,421 posts, read 8,492,867 times
Reputation: 5559
Quote:
Originally Posted by retiree2011 View Post
My working days are over and for retirement I have pretty much decided on Delaware. Not too hot in the summer, no sales tax, very low property taxes, no property tax on vehicles (or boats or RV's either), no income tax on Social Security income or pensions and $12,500 of investment income per year exempt from income tax. The winters are a little warmer than here and with a little less snow. With the recent cold and snow storm, it is tempting to consider a warmer place, but that comes with hotter summers and maybe not as low a cost of living. Plus houses in Delaware, in 55+ communities like I plan to buy into, are higher than states further south. I have considered this all from all angles; coastal areas further south have nice beaches, but houses too expensive and probably insurance is too. Further inland, no beaches nearby and maybe hotter, plus I like to get to the beach sometimes. So, all in all, I think Delaware is the place for me. Maybe not for everyone - but that is a good thing, since it is a small state, so everyone can't move there.

A former neighbor of mine moved to Arizona last year, for family reasons. All summer, when we spoke on the phone, she said it was 110+ degrees and she could not even go outside. She is fairskinned and not tolerant of heat, even in CT. Now she is ecstatic about the weather there, but when we are enjoying our summer, she will be stuck inside again. So bottom line, no place is perfect; you just have to find the place that suits you best and be happy.
Hey, since people who move to North Carolina are considered "half-backs" if you move to Deleware I guess you would be considered a "quarter back". Don't go further south because of a few snowstorms..the summer heat will get ya. Never judge a place during the harshest season.
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Old 01-03-2013, 04:50 PM
 
Location: Washington DC area
7 posts, read 11,573 times
Reputation: 19
One of my siblings moved to the Raleigh area 5 years ago and here is his experience. He moved there from the west coast, having originally lived in NJ. He and his wife left SF Bay area with their kids when the housing and cost of living there priced them out. They chose the Raleigh area for it's cost of living, larger homes, warmer climate (than the northeast) and potential strong job market.

They moved to the area without jobs, but with some savings. They bought a nice, large, fairly new foreclosed home right off the bat. However, it took over a year living in the area for them to find jobs. Both have since lost their jobs due to down-sizing. It took both of them a long time to find other work, with long periods of unemployment. The kids have attended year-round schools and regular-schedule schools and seemed to have switched schools a number of times due to redistricting. They have just sold the house after 5 years and have downsized into an apartment rental.

Most of their family members live in the northeast, which makes visiting an 8 hour trip. They don't make the trip much anymore due to time and money (and who knows, maybe other issues!).

Just thought I'd share one family's experience.
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Old 01-03-2013, 05:51 PM
 
1,682 posts, read 1,846,277 times
Reputation: 3765
[quote=raineydays;27608209]... They chose the Raleigh area for it's cost of living, larger homes, warmer climate (than the northeast) and potential strong job market.

They moved to the area without jobs, but with some savings. They bought a nice, large, fairly new foreclosed home right off the bat. However, it took over a year living in the area for them to find jobs. Both have since lost their jobs due to down-sizing.

...[quote]

With due respect, there's the rub. If you're still of working age, it's generally not a good idea to move someplace else; plunk down a chunk of change on a fixed asset (which is depreciating); and then hustle to find some income to cover the nut you've already bought.

If you're going to relocate willy-nilly, buy a camper, suck it up, and live on the bone until the income exceeds the out-go. That is, of course, unless you're a trust fund baby.

Respectfully - because I have a tremendous amount of compassion for all of us who have been kicked in the butt by this recession - your brother's choice is not a reflection on the Carolinas, but on the relative utility of "hope and pray" as a business plan.

The apples to apples comparison: your brother and his family would have had to move to CT jobless. Bought a house in Fairfield County. And then hustled to find jobs. They would have wound up just as broke, faster.

Just sayin' - again, very respectfully because we have ALL been kicked in one way or another by this recession...
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Old 01-03-2013, 05:58 PM
 
Location: Washington DC area
7 posts, read 11,573 times
Reputation: 19
jane_sm1th73 - Agreed.
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Old 01-03-2013, 09:34 PM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
103 posts, read 120,043 times
Reputation: 209
Quote:
Originally Posted by I'minformed2 View Post
Be wary of this whole "the south is cheap" mantra....especially in NC. NC actually has a higher average tax burden than Massachusetts if you can believe it. Lots of hidden costs down south that people don't realize until they've lived there for a while. NC taxes food, cars (property tax on cars that you pay every year) generally has higher homeowners insurance rates (especially closer to the ocean like you want to be),and virtually every neighborhood...and EVERY new neighborhood (you said the abundance of new construction was appealing to you) have HOA fees. Those can be in the $1k-$2k+ a year range in many of the large new developments (there goes that savings in property taxes!). On top of that, the reason those property taxes are lower is because the schools are county based (with the sole exception of Chapel Hill-Carrboro schools....but that area is way out of your price-range) which generally is a massive headache that can and often does lead to your kids going to school further from home and getting reassigned to new schools every few years in many cases.

Sounds like you have a good life in CT and are financially secure there. If your move south is only going to be for milder winter weather (just remember, that comes paired with a pretty miserable summer) and to have a bigger, newer house....your reservations in making the big move might be well founded.
Bingo. We moved to Charlotte a few years back. Got excellent career opportunities and love the weather. The South is only cheaper in outlying areas where the rednecks live. Raleigh, Charlotte, Charleston are all transplant cities with higher cost of living. Housing is much cheaper, and is the only factor responsible for the lower overall COL.
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Old 01-04-2013, 01:46 AM
 
1,682 posts, read 1,846,277 times
Reputation: 3765
Quote:
Originally Posted by Reaganite22 View Post
Bingo. We moved to Charlotte a few years back. Got excellent career opportunities and love the weather. The South is only cheaper in outlying areas where the rednecks live. Raleigh, Charlotte, Charleston are all transplant cities with higher cost of living. Housing is much cheaper, and is the only factor responsible for the lower overall COL.
Well, there's also taxes and energy.

Housing, energy and RE taxes consume over 70% of the take-home pay of the median earner in the Northeast states. Whereas somewhat south of the Mason-Dixon, it is possible to get by with an average electric bill of $150/mo. Assuming you don't live in a bubble-era cr*pshack, thrown up with the objective of fleecing debtors punch-drunk on ez-money. The builders who have been around awhile know how to design houses that are liveable with minimal air conditioning and maximum air flow.

The combined effects of cheaper housing, less energy required to keep from freezing in the winter, and lower taxes has a heck of a multiplier effect on quality of life.

I will tell my relatives what you said about them. I'm right impressed with your show of class. Hope you stay nice and smug.
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Old 01-04-2013, 06:25 AM
 
Location: Connecticut
1,046 posts, read 1,300,381 times
Reputation: 1126
Quote:
Originally Posted by jane_sm1th73 View Post
Well, there's also taxes and energy.

Housing, energy and RE taxes consume over 70% of the take-home pay of the median earner in the Northeast states. Whereas somewhat south of the Mason-Dixon, it is possible to get by with an average electric bill of $150/mo.
.
My electric bill here in Connecticut is $60 to $65 per month, so it doesn't seem the South is inexpensive in that regard.
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:43 AM
 
2,893 posts, read 2,979,236 times
Reputation: 1424
Even with CA in a large colonial, my electric bill never exceeds $175/month. State income tax is about 1-2% higher in North Carolina surprisingly. That said, real estate and RE taxes are much lower.
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