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Old 09-30-2008, 10:27 PM
 
173 posts, read 586,894 times
Reputation: 55

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Hi,
I am looking for a place for my family to live. Your suggestions are highly appreciated. Thank you!
John
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Old 09-30-2008, 11:03 PM
 
Location: Mission Viejo, CA
2,498 posts, read 10,287,210 times
Reputation: 1598
Well I think I am one of the few posters on this board with kids, so I'll tell you what I like about my area:

1. Good public schools
2. Very clean and well maintained city and a good city council that understands residents.
3. Many many other families and blocks full of kids making it easy for kids to socialize and make friends
4. Weather, moderate all year ranging from 65-85 degrees and sunny
5. Proximity to culture and excitement of Los Angeles and San Diego, good air service and John Wayne Airport has nonstop service to major cities
6. Ridiculously low crime rate, city was ranked safest in America for 2008 in one survey. Usually in top 10 lists for this.
7. Very nice neighbors and strong friends.
8. Family friendly shopping
9. Lake Mission Viejo
10. 2 hour drive to ski resorts
11. Twenty minute drive to world class beaches (my kids love surfing)
12. Mountain biking five minutes from home (more for my husband)
13. Community building events such as Rose Parade Float, Tierra Nativa, 4th of July Block Party, Artes de la Vida, Walk Against Drugs and more
14. Rolling hills and lots of green

The Negatives:
1. Traffic is bad at rush hour if commuting north of Irvine, otherwise manageable (less than 25 minutes)
2. Poor public transportation (OCTA), makes LA public transportation look amazing
3. EXPENSIVE: $500,000 for a single family home that is only 1,000 square feet on a 3,500 square foot lot and built in 1960.
4. The pollution in the creeks which have become storm drains
5. Some "fake" people, but they tend to congregate in certain cities/areas that are "hip"
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Old 10-01-2008, 12:03 AM
 
Location: West Michigan
12,084 posts, read 34,152,361 times
Reputation: 16839
I have 4 kids and live on the west side of Michigan in a small town of 1200 people. What I love about my town is:
1) GREAT schools! Caring staff from the Superintendent all the way down to the maintenance guys. They all put the kids first and they all make sure the education the kids get is the very best they can provide.

2) Still that Mayberry feel to town. Walk into any store and they know you by name and if you have been around for a while they know all your relatives as well.

3) SAFE!!! very low crime rate, but excellent law enforcement if something does happen.

4) No "bad" section of town. Sure a few dumpy houses here and there, but for the most part very clean and well kept houses and yards.

5) LOW cost of living. Including housing prices. Just bought a 2200 square foot 2 story sitting on 1/2 an acre in town. Less than 3 blocks from any of the schools and 3 blocks from downtown. 7 baseball fields, 4 soccer fields, 4 basketball courts, 3 tennis courts, 1 park, 3 playgrounds, 1 running track, 2 football fields, and more less than 5 blocks to any of them from the house. 2 miles away is a world class trout river (1st one stocked with brown trout in the US, and still loaded with Rainbow, Brown, & Brook trout, as well as many other fish.) Price... less than $90,000. Hardwood floors throughout 1st floor, attached garage with workshop area. Brand new stainless appliances throughout as well. NOT a fixer-upper at all. I know of a 4 bedroom, brand new quality remodel on 2 acres in town 2 blocks away from schools that is for sale for $170,000.

6) Economy actually doing pretty well for the times right now.

7) 6 miles to miles of sugar sand beaches on Lake Michigan. Awesome sunsets, great swimming, great tanning without crowds (if you know where to go.) Hunting/fishing/ and outdoor rec for all 4 seasons right at the back door almost.

8) Laid-back attitude of the locals.

9) The most family centered town and area I have ever seen. I have been all over and nowhere have I seen the commitment to family like this area.


Cons? Yeah there are a few.

1) Limited shopping. That said though, there is nothing that is needed that cannot be found with some looking. If you want a high-end name brand you may have to drive to find it, but careful looking may net you just what you want locally as well.

2) Tourists. Yes it is a tourist area for the entire Summer, and it does wear thin after the hundredth time somebody who doesn't have a clue where they are going cuts you off, or just stops in the middle of the road to ask directions from somebody on the sidewalk.

3) ... really cannot think of another one.
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Old 10-01-2008, 12:27 AM
 
173 posts, read 586,894 times
Reputation: 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by missionhome View Post
Well I think I am one of the few posters on this board with kids, so I'll tell you what I like about my area:

1. Good public schools
2. Very clean and well maintained city and a good city council that understands residents.
3. Many many other families and blocks full of kids making it easy for kids to socialize and make friends
4. Weather, moderate all year ranging from 65-85 degrees and sunny
5. Proximity to culture and excitement of Los Angeles and San Diego, good air service and John Wayne Airport has nonstop service to major cities
6. Ridiculously low crime rate, city was ranked safest in America for 2008 in one survey. Usually in top 10 lists for this.
7. Very nice neighbors and strong friends.
8. Family friendly shopping
9. Lake Mission Viejo
10. 2 hour drive to ski resorts
11. Twenty minute drive to world class beaches (my kids love surfing)
12. Mountain biking five minutes from home (more for my husband)
13. Community building events such as Rose Parade Float, Tierra Nativa, 4th of July Block Party, Artes de la Vida, Walk Against Drugs and more
14. Rolling hills and lots of green

The Negatives:
1. Traffic is bad at rush hour if commuting north of Irvine, otherwise manageable (less than 25 minutes)
2. Poor public transportation (OCTA), makes LA public transportation look amazing
3. EXPENSIVE: $500,000 for a single family home that is only 1,000 square feet on a 3,500 square foot lot and built in 1960.
4. The pollution in the creeks which have become storm drains
5. Some "fake" people, but they tend to congregate in certain cities/areas that are "hip"
Thank you for the reply. Your city is cost-prohibitive.
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Old 10-01-2008, 12:34 AM
 
Location: southern california
55,647 posts, read 74,595,623 times
Reputation: 48140
the good news s. cal has no winter.
the bad news, the public schools stink.
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Old 10-01-2008, 08:02 AM
 
Location: The Rock!
2,370 posts, read 6,995,262 times
Reputation: 804
Why I love Little Rock:

I have pretty much all the urban activities I could want on a day to day basis within 15-20 minutes. Activities ranging from excellent art displays, theater, an up and coming zoo, public sculpture installations, all the necessary shopping, and plenty of locally owned eating establishments with unique character. I can be in a wilderness area within an hour and on the lake in much less! Winter is just enough, 2 or 3 snows with ground cover but they usually only last a day or two at most and fall is usually fantastic!

We have some public schools that are nationally exemplary, some you should stay away from but certainly not all.

Little Rock gets a bad rap for crime but it is very localized and it's been improving in recent years. Most locations in and around the city are quite safe.

Best of all, we have jobs and most of them are in industries where Americans still make something real. We have quite a few light to moderate manufacturers and new companies currently building brand new facilities. Homes are still being built and selling before they're complete. Compared to most of the country, we're very affordable with new construction homes with all the amenties going just over $100/sq. ft. Over the course of the past year, I have not seen home prices decline, they are holding steady especially in the new construction and some of the older upscale neighborhoods.
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Old 10-01-2008, 08:28 AM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
23,052 posts, read 35,012,419 times
Reputation: 15172
City of Decatur:

Suburban Atlanta, small-town feel
Beautiful neighborhoods
Great school system
Access to great shops and restaurants
Wedged between two universities (Agnes Scott, Emory), "academic" climate
Pedestrian orientation
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Old 10-01-2008, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Albany (school) NYC (home)
893 posts, read 2,518,180 times
Reputation: 370
I'm just going to do my whole County since its pretty much the same.

Nassau County, NY ( Long Island)
Pros:
1. Good public schools, only a certain you should stay away from.
2. No more than 30 minutes from the beach no matter where you live.
3. Plenty of shopping.
4. A skip away from New York City
5. 4 great seasons.
6. Lots of culture. (Museums, Libraries)
7. About 4 different Universities and colleges.
8. Always something going on.
9. Wineries about an hour away.
10. Pocono's (skiing) about 2 1/2-3 hours away.

Cons:
1. Expensive a good house with OK amount of land will cost you about 500k.
2. People say we come off as snobbish, typical NYers.
3. Fast paced (might be a pro)
4. Big shopping culture.
6. TAXES. 7-10K
7. Most of the houses aren't brand new. This isn't LA, Atlanta.
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Old 10-01-2008, 10:03 AM
 
Location: West Hollywood
2,223 posts, read 4,134,246 times
Reputation: 1767
I live most of the year in Bloomington, Indiana and a couple of months in Chicago, so I'll list the benefits of both (glad this is a complimentary city thread and not one of those stupid vs. threads).

Bloomington, Indiana:

Pros:
-Great college culture (Indiana University and Ivy Tech), lots going on
-Great sports culture (inter-murals and minor leagues, as well as college football and basketball)
-Great place to raise a family (tons of family events throughout the city and county)
-Beautiful scenery
-Great selection of non-chain restaurants and ethnic eateries
-Great vibe at certain parts of the city past 12

Cons:
-Weather is either very hot or very cold, although the falls and springs are great
-Traffic during the day sucks due to University
-Sometimes it's a bit noisy for a family due to the college kids

Now Chicago

Pros:
-Fantastic urban experiences, such as sightseeing, shopping, and endless varieties of places to eat (non chains)
-Great public transportation (don't care what others say, it gets me everywhere I need, second in the country after NYC)
-Great sports culture
-Friendliness
-Fantastic nightlife and tons of stuff to do at night
-For a city at nearly 3 million, low cost of living
-Perfect city for young people

Cons:
-Like NYC, it's very dense and urban, and getting around by car during the day is a challenge (use of mass transit is advised)
-Not really good for raising a family, due to constant pace of the city.
-It has it's good schools and it's bad schools, you have to find the right ones
-Gets cold in the winter, though its tolerable
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Old 10-01-2008, 11:29 PM
 
173 posts, read 586,894 times
Reputation: 55
How about Portland?
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