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Unread 08-18-2010, 12:11 AM
 
2 posts, read 2,544 times
Reputation: 12
Question Great Quality of Life - where is it?

I hope I don't sound too frustrated with this post, but I have become such after living in Gilbert, AZ for the past 3 1/2 years. Where is the simple quality of life that I long for for my family? I have twin six year olds and a two year old, and my husband or twelve years and I are desperately searching for somewhere/ANYWHERE in the US that has a desirable quality of life for a young family - specifically: 1) Nice home on a nice lot (I swear everyone is AZ is CRAZY! - they think that 1/4 acre lots are "HUGE" - I spent 25 years living in Northern Virginia where I was used to beautiful, open, green, 1+ acre backyards - it just plain does not exist here!) 2) Good schools within walking distance (AZ local schools are so bad, I have to drive my kids 45 minutes twice a day to a charter school just for a worthy elementary education) 3) A commute that is ideally 35 min. or less. (right now we are dealing with an hour commute each way - 80 miles everyday). My husband has a telecommunications background, but is working as an executive in a purchasing/supply-chain position at a consumer products company. My background is in process and applications development/implementations.

The three ideals that we are seeking I thought would be easy to come by, but we have discovered that they are completely impossible to achieve here in AZ. (That coupled with the $290k cash we put down on our overpriced house in 2007 - is now gone because our home is now valued below our loan amount - basically leaves a huge distaste in our mouths for this area/state). Does anyone live in a nice US suburb that they would recommend? We are really open to anywhere! As for housing, we would prefer a community of newer homes that are between 4000 - 5000 sf, with at least 1/2 acre lots. PLEASE HELP!!
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Unread 08-18-2010, 01:17 AM
 
Location: Bellevue, WA
404 posts, read 529,106 times
Reputation: 135
How much are you willing to spend on that huge mansion? If you want to spend 300k, I doubt you'd find it anywhere.
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Unread 08-18-2010, 02:03 AM
 
4,602 posts, read 4,315,836 times
Reputation: 3782
You could try here in SW FL. Maybe a city like Naples or Estero. But personally, I hate it here. But what's another person's trash is another man's treasure.
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Unread 08-18-2010, 06:47 AM
 
Location: Dorchester
2,602 posts, read 2,707,149 times
Reputation: 1048
If Northern VA. made you happy then why not go back?

You can find a very high quality of life in many parts of the country, unfortunately those areas are the most expensive places to buy. Consequently you will end up in a smaller home which apparently will not satisfy you.

Here in Eastern Massachusetts, the property you describe will cost you 3/4 of a million.
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Unread 08-18-2010, 07:21 AM
Status: "It's a setup" (set 8 days ago)
 
26,762 posts, read 30,125,144 times
Reputation: 5346
Would something like this work?

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This might help give you an idea of what type of work is available: Central New York Jobs
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Unread 08-18-2010, 08:57 AM
 
4,834 posts, read 2,512,036 times
Reputation: 4905
Shadow Lake in Papillion, NE. If you can tolerate some snow and humidity, the quality of life is actually quite good here. There are two lakes (man-made, of course) in the development with a walking trail, a newer elementary school in the subdivision and a newer high school a few minutes down the road. There is also a large shopping center across the street and a AAA baseball stadium is being built just down the road. The economy is pretty good here and it is an easy commute.


Listing Search Results
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Unread 08-18-2010, 09:01 AM
 
Location: Cincinnati
3,048 posts, read 2,702,709 times
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i think the smaller mid sized cities in the midwest might work (think Ft Wayne, not Indianapolis). but, asking for both a 1/2 acre plus lot and a school within walking distance is pretty unrealistic. i mean, if lots are 1/2 acre, how many can reasonably be within walking distance to a school? i mean basically you want a mcmansion next to a school. there are some, maybe, somewhere, but what i've seen, they are in their own subdivisions several miles from the local school. i'm not meaning to sound harsh, but you will need to prioritize. i'd love to have a ten acre estate within walking distance to a couple of restaurants, a grocery store, a library, a rec center, and a park, but it just isn't going to happen
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Unread 08-18-2010, 09:07 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
1,773 posts, read 2,360,774 times
Reputation: 1371
Quote:
Originally Posted by progmac View Post
i think the smaller mid sized cities in the midwest might work (think Ft Wayne, not Indianapolis). but, asking for both a 1/2 acre plus lot and a school within walking distance is pretty unrealistic. i mean, if lots are 1/2 acre, how many can reasonably be within walking distance to a school? i mean basically you want a mcmansion next to a school. there are some, maybe, somewhere, but what i've seen, they are in their own subdivisions several miles from the local school. i'm not meaning to sound harsh, but you will need to prioritize. i'd love to have a ten acre estate within walking distance to a couple of restaurants, a grocery store, a library, a rec center, and a park, but it just isn't going to happen
I second this.
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Unread 08-18-2010, 09:19 AM
 
4,834 posts, read 2,512,036 times
Reputation: 4905
Quote:
Originally Posted by progmac View Post
i think the smaller mid sized cities in the midwest might work (think Ft Wayne, not Indianapolis). but, asking for both a 1/2 acre plus lot and a school within walking distance is pretty unrealistic. i mean, if lots are 1/2 acre, how many can reasonably be within walking distance to a school? i mean basically you want a mcmansion next to a school. there are some, maybe, somewhere, but what i've seen, they are in their own subdivisions several miles from the local school. i'm not meaning to sound harsh, but you will need to prioritize. i'd love to have a ten acre estate within walking distance to a couple of restaurants, a grocery store, a library, a rec center, and a park, but it just isn't going to happen
The subdivision I suggested actually has an elementary school in the neighborhood within walking distance. I'm not sure exactly how big the lots are, but some of the houses definitely qualify as McMansions, or close to it, for under $500K. The shopping center directly across the street has several restaurants, a 24 hour grocery store, and lots of different shops.


Best Places to Live 2009 - Top 100: City details: Papillion, NE - from MONEY Magazine
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Unread 08-18-2010, 09:21 AM
 
Location: Cincinnati
3,048 posts, read 2,702,709 times
Reputation: 1731
dogwalker425 - interesting. thanks for pointing that out.
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