U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > General U.S.
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
Old 06-07-2017, 03:06 PM
4,083 posts, read 3,297,207 times
Reputation: 5391


I second Greenville, SC.

Also look at Clemson, SC, about 40 minutes from Greenville. The university there will have events like you are interested in.

Several small towns around there might turn up a historic house for low money...Pickens and Anderson come to mind.

You mentioned Florence, SC. Florence has a lot of beautiful homes and you could definitely find something in your budget. However, I think you will be disappointed with Florence itself. There is no beautiful and preserved downtown area (downtown is a high crime low income area, although they are trying to change it). The town itself is a mish-mash and honestly is not very pretty at all, despite having some very pretty neighborhoods.

I would also recommend Asheville, NC. VERY artsy, lots of historic homes, 4 seasons, beautiful scenery, has a food and wine scene. There are many smaller towns around as well...two I recommend are Flat Rock, NC and Hendersonville, NC.

Last edited by calgirlinnc; 06-07-2017 at 03:16 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Old 06-07-2017, 03:20 PM
Status: "Be yourself. What's the alternative?" (set 16 days ago)
8,675 posts, read 10,831,402 times
Reputation: 12722
Originally Posted by cchip55 View Post
Well there is an expression about the wisdom of crowds, so I am hoping to get some guidance from this forum.

I want to move to the South, but am having a hard time figuring out the right place for me. Just a little background, I have lived on the East Coast, West Coast, Midwest and the South (New Orleans and Texas) as well as Europe, Asia and Central America, so I am a pretty adaptable person. I am single with no kids, so I don't care about school districts, but I also don't need someplace with a big dating scene as I am happily single. So I don't need a place with lots of bars and such. I am also not worried about the job scene where I go, I do work that can be done remotely, and I hope to retire young anyway within the next five years. I also don't care about lots of shopping with the exception of antique stores. Nowadays, I can get anything shipped such as by Amazon, I just don't buy a lot other than the necessities.

Why did I choose the South?
*Friendly people/slower pace of life
*Historical homes - in other parts of the country, these are torn down to build big ugly McMansions or multi-family,but I appreciate great architecture
*Cost of living
*Proximity of other interesting places to visit within driving distance

I currently live on the West Coast and there is too much traffic, too many crowds, unfriendly people, too much constant construction, politics I don't totally agree with (I am liberal on some issues, but very very conservative on others), too expensive. I do love the temperate climate, but will have to give that up to get the other things I want.

HISTORIC HOME - What I want. I really really want a historic home, doesn't need to be on the scale of Tara as I live alone and don't need anything too large, but I love historic details such as transoms above doors, extremely tall ceilings, nice baseboards and molding, etc. Basically I want a home built between 1880-1935.

FOOD SCENE - I don't need hundreds of restaurants like I have now, but if a town only had a diner, some fast food places and one decent restaurant, that's the other extreme. I would also like some variety, such as at least a few ethnic restaurants.

CRIME - I currently live in a very large city, but it doesn't have proportionally high crime, though it seems to be changing in that direction. I realize from having lived so many places that unfortunately we live in an age where it's everywhere, but it's in different degrees in different places. As a single woman I want to feel safe, but I am also savvy enough to be aware of my surroundings, not do silly things, etc. There is also a difference between personal safety and property crime. I hate the idea of someone breaking into my home, my sanctuary.

ART/CULTURE - I love the arts and want to find a place that at least has some arts/culture, whether that is a small playhouse, art galleries/walks, book readings, lectures, etc. It often helps if there is a university, even a small one brings cultural offerings.

LOW COST OF LIVING - My dream is to sell my current home and use the profit to buy my next home in cash and never have another mortgage - to do that I want to keep the price under $180k

SIZE - I am not going to limit myself by saying a certain size of town or city, because there are small towns out there that can have the amenities or vibrancy of a big city, conversely a big city with lots of amenities might have some of the factors I am trying to get away from, so I will remain open.

I have researched and visited southern towns and cities on business, vacation, and simply on trips trying to find my next home, but someone who reads this post may say, "My town/city sounds like a good fit for her!" and help me consider a place that hasn't even been on my radar yet. Here are places I have been and what I liked/didn't like about them:

Raleigh/Durham, NC - too expensive and traffic getting bad
Winston Salem, NC - lovely people, low cost of living, but for the 'City of Arts and Innovation' it didn't seem to live up to that slogan. Also, no food scene. Like would be pleasant, looking for something more.
Greensboro, NC - Don't know why exactly, but just didn't like it
Atlanta - Too big and sprawly, plus bad traffic, though I like visiting, especially some of the areas just outside like Roswell, etc.
Augusta, GA - Vacant downtown - could be great in 10 years if it revitalizes. Historic neighborhoods a little dodgy as surrounded by bad areas. Not much food scene.
Aiken, SC - Pleasant, but might not have enough in terms of restaurants and things to do? I only spent a day there.
Charleston, SC - great city in many of the ways I care about, but I think I am priced out for want I want in housing.
Savannah, GA - I have been there as a tourist years ago, great history and food too. It's also arty because of SCAD. However, the Savannah forum has a lot to say about bad crime. Also, although I will have to acclimate to the heat in any southern town, it sounds like Savannah is especially humid (and lots of bugs)
Texas - I lived there and it was fine, but don't have any big desire to go back.
New Orleans - Great food scene, Cajun food is my fave. Great art and history too, a really vibrant city. However, also has major crime issues and I don't want to be in the path of a hurricane. We lived there when I was young and had to evacuate.
Birmingham, AL - quite a surprise as it's so green and has a great breeze, great food scene, lots to do, but doesn't really have the historical homes, there are some, but much bigger and more expensive than my price point. I would have to give up my dream of ideal home, but I do like the city very much.
Louisville, KY - Love the homes, especially shotguns. Great food scene, arts, etc. However, it's a grittier more industrial city than for example Birmingham, even in the neighborhoods. Also, people there seem to talk a lot about crime (I explored for a week last fall) and home market is going crazy and getting close to pricing me out.
Montgomery, AL - Absolutely loved the historic neighborhoods and great prices. However, I feel some disquiet that even though it's the second largest city in the whole state, it doesn't even have its own forum on here, wonder why that is? For some reason people outside the city itself don't have much great to say about it, I don't know why. As the second largest city and state capitol, surely it has some life to it? The people I spoke with when I was there were nice. I wish I could have spent more time there to get a better feel. I did notice it only had a small food scene, but as long as there are some good options/variety.

There are states beyond the list above, so I am completely open to hearing about other states or other cities and towns in the states above. So hoping some great people on this board will share their ideas. perceptions, and experiences with me... advanced appreciation to anyone who does...
You've done some good research. Maybe Athens, Georgia? Not that far from Atlanta for occasional trips. Moderate home prices I think, too.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 06-08-2017, 06:07 PM
112 posts, read 155,643 times
Reputation: 112
I have thought about Athens, when I did my most recent Southern Exploratory trip I was so close (flew into Atlanta, but drove to Augusta and Aiken, then crossed back through Atlanta to Birmingham and then down to Montgomery. Athens was so close, but I was really pressed for time. Figured if I flew into Atlanta again to do some other places it would be easy to see Athens. Also, I was a little deterred that nothing ever shows up in my budget in my real estate search alerts, I think it's pricier bc it's a college town and close to Atlanta
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.

Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > General U.S.
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top