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Old 07-11-2016, 10:04 PM
 
18 posts, read 11,073 times
Reputation: 18

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Hi,

I currently live in St. Louis, MO, and I am looking to move somewhere. I am hoping to get some advice and ideas on what cities I should consider.

I lived in one country for 17 years, then 11 years in another, and then 14 years in St. Louis. I do like it here, but I feel like it's time for me to make a change. I would like to find something comparable in size, not much smaller, or maybe even bigger.

What do I like about St. Louis?
- Traffic outside of rush hour is not bad at all, and even during rush hour I am able to take side roads and not get stuck in traffic
- Lots of parking available
- The metropolitan is big enough to offer different things, but I can get anywhere within 30 minutes
- There are plenty of free museums, summer concerts, events
- Affordable housing (I paid $125K for a 3 bedroom townhouse in a top school district)

What I don't like about St. Louis:
- St. Louis is not walkable. I like to go for a walk, but I like to see people, shops, restaurants, etc. To find that here, you need to drive somewhere, park, take a walk for a couple of blocks, and that's it. And even that is available only in a few places.
- Weather. Most of the time it's either too hot or too cold to be outside.
- Midwestern culture. Not much in a way of theater, shows, etc. Lots of sports (I am not a fan). Not too much worldliness and diversity.
- Any closest city is 5 hours away (Chicago, Kansas City, Memphis, Indianapolis). I'd like to be able to go out of town for a weekend and drive for only a couple of hours.

What I am looking for:
- Warm weather. California's 82 degrees is ideal, but not sure I can afford it. I don't like snow, cold winds, and gloomy days.
- Would LOVE to live close to a beach. Ideally within an hour drive, so I could go regularly, but if not, then maybe within a few hours drive, so I could go for a weekend here and there. Right now I have to fly, and that becomes expensive.
- Lots of places to go out. I am not talking bars, but parks, concerts, shows, restaurants, boardwalks, festivals, museums, kid friendly places.
- Possibility to buy a house/condo in a good school area (doesn't have to be a 10, but maybe 7-8) for $200K or less, and within 30 min drive from work. In terms of a job, I don't think it would be a problem to find it anywhere (in a big enough city), since I am in IT.
- Good state college (my older daughter is 16).

I would appreciate any suggestions!
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Old 07-12-2016, 05:55 AM
 
364 posts, read 369,107 times
Reputation: 371
Tampa/St. Pete sounds like a good fit for you
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Old 07-12-2016, 06:55 AM
 
Location: Illinois
997 posts, read 601,008 times
Reputation: 1104
Nashville?
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Old 07-12-2016, 07:01 AM
 
2,517 posts, read 2,284,510 times
Reputation: 1865
Orlando. Close to Miami and Tampa, warm weather, walkable areas.
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Old 07-12-2016, 08:44 AM
 
Location: Denver
14,157 posts, read 19,805,340 times
Reputation: 8810
New Orleans is walkable, plenty of museums, galleries, antique shops, boutiques, theaters, definitely hot, lots of restaurants and festivals. LSU is in Baton Rouge only an hour away. Beaches in Biloxi are an hour away, Alabama and Florida beaches about 3-4. COL is pretty high but you can live in Metairie or the westbank.
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Old 07-12-2016, 11:47 AM
 
Location: TOVCCA
8,452 posts, read 11,477,485 times
Reputation: 12309
Why you should eliminate Southern California from consideration:

Extremely few walkable cities
You cannot afford anywhere near the beach
Traffic is 24/7 everywhere
The good school areas are the most expensive
$200k won't even get you a house in a bad area
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Old 07-12-2016, 01:03 PM
 
21,228 posts, read 30,461,228 times
Reputation: 19701
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ebck120 View Post
Orlando. Close to Miami and Tampa, warm weather, walkable areas.
With traffic Orlando is four hours from Miami and two hours from Tampa so hardly "close". It's also considered the least walkable major city in the country.

Orlando ranked least walkable city in study of largest U.S. metro areas | jacksonville.com
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Old 07-12-2016, 01:12 PM
 
21,228 posts, read 30,461,228 times
Reputation: 19701
Quote:
Originally Posted by pacifica974 View Post
Hi,
What I am looking for:
- Warm weather. California's 82 degrees is ideal, but not sure I can afford it. I don't like snow, cold winds, and gloomy days.
- Would LOVE to live close to a beach. Ideally within an hour drive, so I could go regularly, but if not, then maybe within a few hours drive, so I could go for a weekend here and there. Right now I have to fly, and that becomes expensive.
- Lots of places to go out. I am not talking bars, but parks, concerts, shows, restaurants, boardwalks, festivals, museums, kid friendly places.
- Possibility to buy a house/condo in a good school area (doesn't have to be a 10, but maybe 7-8) for $200K or less, and within 30 min drive from work. In terms of a job, I don't think it would be a problem to find it anywhere (in a big enough city), since I am in IT.
- Good state college (my older daughter is 16).
Check out Jacksonville FL

It hits most of your weather criteria, has some beautiful beaches, offers plenty to do in terms of social/cultural options, has a good selection of desirable housing in your price range, offers very good schools largely with the three suburban school districts surrounding Jacksonville (St John's County, Nassau County and Clay County) are ranked #1, #2 and #14 respectively out of 67 school districts and Jacksonville itself has a surprisingly strong (and growing) IT sector with national reputation.

http://www.bizjournals.com/jacksonvi...ort-finds.html
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Old 07-12-2016, 01:18 PM
 
18 posts, read 11,073 times
Reputation: 18
Thank you all for your suggestions! I was considering Tampa Bay area, but wanted to see if there are alternatives. New Orleans sounds interesting, I will have to check that out. Yeah, California is probably not the way to go...
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Old 07-12-2016, 01:41 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles,CA & Scottsdale, AZ
1,934 posts, read 1,707,730 times
Reputation: 1742
What about Scottsdale, Arizona? Although it's not right next to a beach It's a 3.5 drive from the beach (rocky point). It's also a 5 and a half hour drive to LA and SD (50 min flight). As a whole it is not walkable, but downtown Scottsdale is walkable, full of art galleries, great restaurants, bars, farmers markets/art walks, ect. Only thing that might get in your way is that it's really hot from June till September (but so is New Orleans, Tampa, Orlando).
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