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Old 12-07-2008, 01:05 PM
 
Location: Massachusetts
142 posts, read 314,443 times
Reputation: 112

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Hi,

We are a family of 6 with 4 children under age 10 and while we love Massachusetts, Boston and New England, we feel the cost of raising our family and continuing to live here is getting too expensive - and we would like a warmer climate so we can enjoy being outdoors more often.

We are basically looking for something similar to metro Boston in that we would have good public schools, good access to healthcare, low crime, good mix of cultural activities and social events, good economy for employment (whatever that may be these days its hard to say). About Education - we are also looking at College and will be considering the State's public University system. While Massachusetts enjoys a great reputation for College's, most of these private schools will be out of out budget and we will instead be looking at a State's College system. UMASS is fine but so are many other state schools and this is something I would be curious to understand from folks elsewhere - how do you rate your state's public univeristy system ?

We prefer suburban life - we live 25 miles outside of Boston and would look for something similar in a new metropolis; we like suburban life.

Climate - We are not looking for southern Florida; we simply would like our Winters to be shorter and enjoy more time outdoors while the temperature is still above freezing.

Beaches - we really enjoy the New England beaches from the Cape up to Maine and we realize we cannot have everything, so we would forego proximity to a beach of we could meet all our other citeria. But if we can be within an hour or 2 of the Beaches then even better.

Oh, I almost forgot - cost of living. I don't have all the data in front of me and I realize people pay taxes in one form or another, but I know, Massachusetts is expensive and our biggest motivation is to able to live somewhere where we can find a nice size house (2500 sq ft) under $ 400,000 and still have some $$ left over for a night out.

I think that covers it for now.

Thanks for you advice.


- Joe
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:09 PM
 
Location: Scarsdale, NY
2,775 posts, read 10,725,647 times
Reputation: 794
That's hard to do. Cheap, warm, and coastal? Maybe Charleston, South Carolina or Virginia Beach, VA.

Charleston is a beautiful, charming, coastal town with many shops, cafes, beaches, and walkable areas. It's a very historic town and is warm (palm trees).

Charleston, SC...
From http://charleston.locale.com/SC-loca...c+real+estate/


From http://www.best-of-charleston.com/2007/11/14/charleston-sc-conde-nast-readers-choise-results/ (broken link)
http://www.best-of-charleston.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/11/the-battery-charleston-sc.jpg (broken link)

From http://www.searchforcharlestonreales...-sc-living.php
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:11 PM
 
5,969 posts, read 7,754,501 times
Reputation: 1614
Research Dallas, Charlotte, Houston, and Atlanta. These cities may meet your needs, they have affordable housing and many employment opportunities with some great suburbs.
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:19 PM
 
Location: Scarsdale, NY
2,775 posts, read 10,725,647 times
Reputation: 794
Oh, yeah, I forgot about employment. You may be able to find employment in Charleston or VA Beach, but it may be somewhat hard. Charlotte would be good. I'd recommend Charlotte. NC State for college, close to the Blue Ridge Mountains, good size city, cheap, and outdoor activities.
From http://charlotte-hotels.tripadvisor...._Carolina.html


From http://johnnyism.wordpress.com/2008/...-cancer-state/


From http://www.jillwlang.com/ncmountainshome.htm
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Old 12-07-2008, 07:40 PM
 
5,772 posts, read 13,739,631 times
Reputation: 4583
As long as you can tolerate humid summers that are longer than those you'll be leaving behind, I'm thinking North Carolina and Virginia would fit well. Beaches, and good state colleges. If cost of living were not one of your reasons for wanting out of New England (Boston area?), I'd suggest somewhere around the D.C. area. You could have the cultural offerings of Washington, a milder winter, and some excellent state universities whether you lived in Virginia or Maryland. I don't know that area well enoug to suggest specific towns, but I wonder whether you might find what you're looking for in some area of Maryland or Virginia that's just far enough from D.C. to be out beyond D.C.'s high cost of living.
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Old 12-07-2008, 10:49 PM
 
Location: New York City
2,814 posts, read 6,023,869 times
Reputation: 3164
The best state schools in the South would be U of Virginia in Charlottesville and U of NC at Chapel Hill. Univ of Georgia has a decent reputation and GA residents may be eligible for the HOPE scholarship which would come in handy with 4 children. Univ of Maryland, DE and SC are not in the same league. I'm not sure about the other southern states. Richmond Virginia is a vibrant city with nice suburbs. Good luck
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Old 12-07-2008, 11:08 PM
 
Location: Twin Cities, Minnesota
3,940 posts, read 13,346,324 times
Reputation: 2213
Cheap, warm, coastal? Hmm... good luck but Portland, Oregon comes to mind and it has a similar liberal atmosphere like Boston. If you eliminate coastal from your criteria you could open a TON of new possibilites. Denver comes to mind.
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Old 12-09-2008, 09:37 PM
 
Location: Massachusetts
142 posts, read 314,443 times
Reputation: 112
thanks for the suggestions; I think I will do some research into NC and VA. The metro Wash DC area may be the place to start looking first.
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Old 12-09-2008, 09:39 PM
 
Location: The land of sugar... previously Houston and Austin
5,429 posts, read 13,183,598 times
Reputation: 3642
I second Virginia.
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Old 12-09-2008, 09:50 PM
 
166 posts, read 633,368 times
Reputation: 114
It seems like everything you want you already have right in the Boston area except for expense and slightly warmer winters. Instead of looking far away, perhaps you might want to consider Rhode Island or Connecticut? Delaware might have what you are seeking, and you would be able to look for work in Philadelphia if you wish. Maryland, as long as it's not near D.C which is expensive is another option.
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