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Old 02-18-2008, 08:29 PM
 
12 posts, read 71,092 times
Reputation: 13

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My family is considering a new job in Fort Walton Beach. We would be moving from Michigan. Our children are elementary age. By doing internet research, it seems Fort Walton Beach and Niceville have really good schools. We want to live close to work, but also want a good community to raise the children. Any opinions as to which area is best? Which is safer from a hurricane standpoint? Anything we should know about living and owning a home in the south? Coming from up here I imagine would be a culture shock.
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Old 02-18-2008, 09:10 PM
 
Location: O-Town
1,781 posts, read 6,347,818 times
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Neither is safer when it comes to hurricanes. You can forget that this is Florida!

The only relatively safe area is inland.
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Old 02-18-2008, 09:38 PM
 
Location: Living in Paradise
5,702 posts, read 22,260,638 times
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Both are superb areas with great schools as you already know. I will pick Niceville because is more of a residential or community area. Fort Walton Beach is the larger city in the area.

I regards to hurricanes, don't worry. If you prepare for a hurricane you will do fine. A hurricane allows for plenty of warning and sufficient time to evacuate. I have lived in the area for over 10 years and was stationed at Homestead AFB during Andrew. Don't fear a hurricane, be prepare and you have sufficient time. Actually many areas well inland other than Florida get more damage than some of our coastal area due to flooding and house damage.. Check our hurricane forum for checklist...
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Old 02-18-2008, 11:19 PM
 
62 posts, read 315,777 times
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Unless your on the water you should be fine.

I grew up in Niceville and my parents have lived on the water in both since the early 80s and have yet to take much damage from the storms of the lst 2 decades.

Both are very nice. I would buy in relation to the job and the beach. Traffic gets crazy on 98 during the summer.

I wish I could move back and raise my kid in either town.
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Old 02-19-2008, 07:35 AM
 
Location: Everett, Wa
601 posts, read 1,744,494 times
Reputation: 670
We picked Niceville to raise our family. Best decision for raising kids we have ever made. I've got a great house here on lake in the heart of Niceville if you'd like to talk about it DM me. Our kids are now grown and we are looking to leave for other pastures.....4 bdrm , 2 bth, 2 car oversized garage located in Palm Estates.
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Old 02-19-2008, 09:53 AM
 
Location: Living in Paradise
5,702 posts, read 22,260,638 times
Reputation: 2987
Thumbs up Economic Development Council of Okaloosa County

Info on the county economic development....
Economic Development Council of Okaloosa County (http://www.florida-edc.org/index.html - broken link)
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Old 02-19-2008, 12:36 PM
 
12 posts, read 71,092 times
Reputation: 13
Thanks...your opinions and information are appreciated. How does one prepare for a hurricane? Is Crestview inland enough? How do the Crestview schools compare to Ft. Walton & Niceville? Why is it that inland gets more flooding and water damage than the coast? This is all new to me. Our worries up here are the Lake Effect Snow and ice...preparing for a hurricane is so foreign to me. Are homes built with special shutters for protection? What about schools? We have had school cancelled 8 days so far this year due to the snow and ice. What does it take to cancel a school day in Florida?
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Old 02-19-2008, 09:38 PM
 
1 posts, read 10,241 times
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i spent my whole life in crestview, and it's pretty inland but you still have tornado's pretty bad when their is a hurricane, you really shouldn't worry too much about them though it they bother you, you can just evacuate their is always plenty of warning. Crestview houses right now are not worth what they are asking, i'd go with Niceville, the schools their are amazing, the schools in crestivew are def. sub par. and niceville is really close to destin which has the beach, and some great shopping and fun things to do. ft. walton schools and in between crestview and niceville. in florida school is cancelled usually only for hurricanes maybe two-three days a year only if there is a bad hurricance. you prepare for a hurricane with non perishable food and lotsa bottled water and if you don't have a brick house/ a basement (no common) and its a big storm you evacuate they tell you what you need to do on all the news channels. you don't really have to worry about flooding unless you have water front property. Hurricane's are something i've spent my whole life dealing with and they can be scary if you aren't used to them, but its worth it to be 15-20 mins to the most beautiful beaches. I've only seen two bad ones in my whole life, my parent's have only seen 3 really bad ones in their life time, the great thing about hurricane's is we don't get them every year, they are not something to sweat, you evacuate if that's your game or you get in a basement/safe room/ designated shelter/ and weather it out with flashlights, water and food. its usually over in a day and even in the worse storm power is out for a week to two weeks, that's why we all have generators. I'm sure that southern culture will be much more of a shock. niceville has a 'mullet festvial' every year celebrating the fish -not the hair style- that most people find to nasty to eat. half of niceville and ft walton, is full of backwoods swamp rednecks, and the rest of the people are snooty or military. its an interesting mix down here i'll tell you that. all the sunshine might take some getting used too, i had some friends when i was younger that were from mich. and were surprised when we hid easter eggs out side and most years it never snows etc. i'd def. worry more about the culture shock, especially on your kids, that's why i suggest niceville, its got less of a southern atmosphere too it and its close to destin where there's lots to do to distract them, rave movie theater, etc water parks, etc ...
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Old 02-20-2008, 06:31 AM
 
Location: Everett, Wa
601 posts, read 1,744,494 times
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I would not recommend the schools in Crestview...they are 50 years behind in their teaching methods. When we first relocated from Anchorage, Alaska, we moved to Crestview. They were studying the story of "Balto" ( second grade) They told my son there was a road to Nome. I sent a very polite note to the teacher and explained there was no road to Nome and that it was accessable by plane or dogsled (the Iditarod Race). I got a very snotty note in reply. Several other things happened that showed the teaching staff lacking. We moved to Niceville..A+ schools.

P.S... they called the Saharan Desert the Saneran!!!

Last edited by daytripper; 02-20-2008 at 06:39 AM.. Reason: forgot something
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Old 02-24-2008, 07:29 PM
 
12 posts, read 71,092 times
Reputation: 13
Thank you so much for your input. You have really helped us to understand a bit more ofthe area. Much appreciated!!
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