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Old 03-30-2010, 02:49 AM
 
Location: SW England
1 posts, read 1,918 times
Reputation: 10

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We are relocating from the UK to the DFW metroplex and it's a bit daunting!! I have a great job offer in Arlington and my husband would transfer to the Plano office and continue his position. I realize that these 2 locations are far apart especially given the traffic in the area and that leaves me having no idea where to even begin starting to visualize where we might live!?! We are in our late 30s/early 40s with 2 kids. One would be in elementary school and one in preschool this fall. So, schools are important, but they don't have to be the BEST on paper - I look would want a school with a good community feel to it. I would also consider private schools. I won't be able to visit the area until this summer to take a look...so in the meantime, can someone help direct me to nice places to live?

I would prefer to live closer to work and reduce my commute as much as possible but am unsure about the Arlington area for housing and schools? I don't want to commute more than 30-40 minutes. I also have no idea about other suburbs or neighborhoods of Fort Worth or Arlington that might be good fits for us. On the positive side, my husband would only need to commute 3 days a week usually to the office and can work from home 2 days a week. Our budget is flexible somewhat, but I would prefer to spend no more than 400k on a 4 bedroom house with a study.

Thanks!
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Old 03-30-2010, 04:36 AM
 
Location: NE Tarrant County, TX
394 posts, read 1,056,332 times
Reputation: 260
My $0.02: I think that the best compromise would be to live in the Plano area near your husband's office, rather than living near Arlington or even splitting the difference and living in NE TArrant or NW Dallas Counties. The reason? I think the commute from the Arlington area to Plano is one of the worst in the metroplex area. I'm thinking that the horrors of the morning commute to Plano from Arlington outweigh the milder horrors of commuting from Plano to Arlington.

Why not split the difference? I think that one of you needs to be closer to home in case the kids have trouble at day-care or school. That means that either you or your husband needs to live closer to the office and that office needs to be close to where you all choose to live and send your kids to school.

I work in Arlington and live in the H-E-B area and my commute to the office is no big deal - local streets 100%.

You all may choose to live closer to Arlington and there are lots of nice communities in the surrounding area that I think you'd like. I despise the drive to Plano from our area, though. If your husband travels for business a great deal then living in the area just north of Arlington may make the most sense to be closer to the airport, despite the horrible commute 3 days of the week.

Also, many of our nicest and most friendly communities are in NE Tarrant close to the airport. I could be biased, though .

Come on down, look around and make the best decision for your family. I know that you will find a great community whether you choose to live closer to Arlington or Plano.

One last caveat: I don't know a lot about Plano. I occasionally have to drive there, though, and it seems unreasonably hectic and tiring each time. I am just about 100% certain that there are those who feel that Plano is close to ideal.

-Eric
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Old 03-30-2010, 09:00 AM
 
27,480 posts, read 44,959,956 times
Reputation: 14051
if it were my decision--I would look at Coppell ISD--
small district and not lot of new development area so it won't grow much larger--more of a community feel to it since the town and the district are more one-to one--
because in TX school districts have set their own boundaries--they are not required to mimic those of the towns that feed into them--
One school district can have students from 3 separate cities and a city can have 3 ISDs in its boundaries--
confusing to new-commers not familiar with how it works and can muddle the issue of "community"

your children are young--
In Texas our public schools are rated currently by their TAKS scores and other factors like % of "highly qualified teachers" and % of graduation rates in high schools--TX is also moving away from the TAKS tests on certain grade levels to an End-of-course-test in certain areas at middle and high school levels which some people believe with be tied more to content germaine to subject matter vs a test designed at lower skill/IQ levels...
look for schools rates EXEMPLARY--it is easier for an elementary school to earn that rating and much more difficult for middle or high schools to do so...
an Exemplary elementary, an exemplary or recognized middle, and a Recognized high school would be a very good catchment area for local school zoning...using current standards...

the one factor to worry about in selecting a public school district is the tax base--
Coppell has majority % coming from residential homes vs retail/commercial/industrial I believe and if there are no new areas to develop then the tax structure is basically fixed ceiling--BUT that also means that there may not be need for construction of new school buildings or hiring of too many additional teachers and other staff which is the largest part of any ISD's budget...

if you check a map--Coppell itself is fairly close to DFW airport--and depending on WHERE in Plano and Arlington you might be working there are couple of large freeways that can be used...
Google maps says 30 min from Plano to Coppell--probably longer in traffic
and about the same using 360 to get to Arlington--
of course much of that depends on how far your residence/work is from the freeways and times that you travel...

Coppell ISD has excellent reputation--has mix of retail shopping/parks/restaurants/churches/homes in your price range
there are doctors and dentists in the area--the closest hospital might be Baylor in Grapevine but that has excellent reputation--
one negative might be that some homes could get flight noise from planes at DFW--not sure about that--but it is possiblity--and I think there might be gas well drilling from Barnett Shale exploration in Coppell--but have not heard lot about that--there are ways to find out though...

one thing I really like about Coppell when I drive through that area is the city's signage rule--there are no tall signs as other areas have--so it is much better line of sight driving down the main streets--more attractive--less jumbled--and I find that more restful if nothing else--

while I agree that living in Arlington and driving in Plano would be better than the reverse--I don't think that you would be happy with Arlington ISD for long run--and Arlington neighborhoods often have problems being close to unattractive/undesireable areas--bad zoning...roads in Arlington are pretty poor and there the amount of traffic on surface streets just keeps them in poor shape--
no public transportation in Arlington or any town outside Dallas and a few areas were DART is extending its route--like Garland which does not work for you--some areas in Carrollton--again not really a good choice for you..

other areas that would not be a great commute to Plano but do have homes in your price range and would be fairly viable commute to Arlington would be Grapevine Colleyville ISD--living either in Grapevine or Colleyville --
good ISD although coming into financial pressure for several reasons--
check out new post I made on Fort Worth board about that...

will PM an excellent MLS site to use for the Metroplex just to check out homes in your price range with 4 beds and study--you can search by geographical area, by doing a general search for any towns in a county, or by using drop down menus by county/town/neighborhood...

has great map feature that has 360 view of property/neighborhood so you can see how house sets on the lot, privacy issues, any negatives like being close to busy intersections or strip malls or backing to open field (which is really dangerours since you don't know about future construction/zoning)...

good luck and post any new questions here--
we are happy to help
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Old 03-30-2010, 10:45 AM
 
Location: Grapevine, Texas
54 posts, read 125,899 times
Reputation: 22
You probably should consider Grapevine.

Really depends on what part of Plano, but if your husband is working in North Plano he can make that commute in 30 minutes easy. And Arlington is a snap from Grapevine.

Good luck.
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Old 04-03-2010, 04:10 PM
 
Location: Simmering in DFW
6,947 posts, read 18,689,984 times
Reputation: 7187
Coppell, Euless, Grapevine.......
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Old 04-10-2010, 12:01 AM
 
Location: TEXAS
378 posts, read 357,031 times
Reputation: 243
Quote:
Originally Posted by neppy View Post
We are relocating from the UK to the DFW metroplex and it's a bit daunting!! I have a great job offer in Arlington and my husband would transfer to the Plano office and continue his position. I realize that these 2 locations are far apart especially given the traffic in the area and that leaves me having no idea where to even begin starting to visualize where we might live!?! We are in our late 30s/early 40s with 2 kids. One would be in elementary school and one in preschool this fall. So, schools are important, but they don't have to be the BEST on paper - I look would want a school with a good community feel to it. I would also consider private schools. I won't be able to visit the area until this summer to take a look...so in the meantime, can someone help direct me to nice places to live?

I would prefer to live closer to work and reduce my commute as much as possible but am unsure about the Arlington area for housing and schools? I don't want to commute more than 30-40 minutes. I also have no idea about other suburbs or neighborhoods of Fort Worth or Arlington that might be good fits for us. On the positive side, my husband would only need to commute 3 days a week usually to the office and can work from home 2 days a week. Our budget is flexible somewhat, but I would prefer to spend no more than 400k on a 4 bedroom house with a study.

Thanks!
Family life is so complicated in America today. It's become a "must have two incomes" society, which is really a shame. The kids pay such a high price, and the parents are overloaded with unnecessary stresses, pulled from one direction and then the other.

Simplify.

Learn to live on one income, stay home with the kids, give them a sense of calm and stability. Or both of you work from home. Find a way. When it's all said and done, what's the overload and stress worth?
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Old 04-10-2010, 04:12 PM
 
1 posts, read 1,914 times
Reputation: 10
Grapevine or Coppell would be two wonderful choices!
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Old 05-06-2010, 12:10 PM
 
Location: Lantana (Argyle)
8 posts, read 53,700 times
Reputation: 10
Default Flower Mound

I would say Flower Mound area. Most of the schools are rated 9's and 10's. Somewhere near the corners for Round Grove Rd (30/40) and Long Prairie (2499). Lots of fast quick options to get to both Arlington or Plano from there. Lots of good grocery, church, shopping, sports, and dinning options. And about 15 to 20 minutes from the DFW airport. Wide range of home options from the 150 to 900,000. You name it they got it and all good places to live.
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Old 05-06-2010, 04:39 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, TX
1,379 posts, read 5,812,361 times
Reputation: 345
It may not be something you have thought about, but life here in Texas is a lot different than other places and just to give you other options (having moved here from California), one income homes are much more prevalent than other areas.

LOTS of stay at home moms or work from home moms here. Cost of living is MUCH less than UK.

I know quite a few moms that have executive careers that telecommute or adjust to go into the office as little as possible. Obviously that doesn't work for everyone.

Here's hoping your job is on the east side of Arlington and not the west side. If its not, I would consider getting a new job . Couldn't pay me to make that commute!
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Old 05-06-2010, 06:24 PM
 
1,064 posts, read 3,022,462 times
Reputation: 582
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guingirl View Post
It may not be something you have thought about, but life here in Texas is a lot different than other places and just to give you other options (having moved here from California), one income homes are much more prevalent than other areas.

LOTS of stay at home moms or work from home moms here. Cost of living is MUCH less than UK.

I know quite a few moms that have executive careers that telecommute or adjust to go into the office as little as possible. Obviously that doesn't work for everyone.

Here's hoping your job is on the east side of Arlington and not the west side. If its not, I would consider getting a new job . Couldn't pay me to make that commute!
I agree. I know alot of people commute and they may not have a choice but I have always moved close to where I work, it makes life so much easier and less stressful. My spouse and I are moving and while I have a great job, I will find one closer to where we will be moving to. I could commute but after factoring in cost...gas, tolls, mileage, time...it is not worth it.
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