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Hampton Roads area Chesapeake - Hampton - Newport News - Norfolk - Portsmouth - Suffolk - Virginia Beach
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Old 06-07-2017, 12:24 PM
2 posts, read 2,087 times
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My husband, myself, our 15 month old daughter and two dogs will hopefully be relocating to Virginia Beach near the end of the summer from Lynchburg, Virginia.

I'm a stay at home mom, and my husband works in mental health. He's looking into a job at the Renaissance Academy.

We are starting the house search and would prefer to buy over rent. Also we would prefer a single family house over a condo/townhouse. Our budget it limited, but we are able to get a fixer and do work ourselves. Hoping to find something under 160k. Can anyone think of any neighborhoods we could check out? I'm not against Norfolk or Chesapeake, but closer to Virginia Beach would be better.

Also, how family friendly is this area? What is there to do for young children?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 06-07-2017, 10:28 PM
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Virginia Beach is extremely family friendly. There are multiple family events just about every weekend.

Unless you're willing to make a lot of compromises, and don't mind something very small, you're not going to get very far with 160k though. Virginia Beach is expensive in relation to the surrounding areas.

You might be better off renting for a few years while saving for a house.

You'll also be much better off living where your husband works. Commuting in Hampton Roads during normal rush hours is pretty terrible if you have to travel anywhere on the interstates. Chesapeake to Virginia Beach, depending on what parts, is normally an absolute bear.

Also, Norfolk and "budget" don't mix. "Cheap" in Norfolk almost always equates to somewhere you wouldn't want to live with a family.
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Old 06-08-2017, 01:32 PM
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Unfortunately, $160k SFH probably isn't going to get you into the family-friendly neighborhoods most would recommend (Strawbridge, Red Mill, Ocean Lakes, North Landing...). Generally speaking, most of VB is pretty good for families, but there are a handful of areas you'd likely want to avoid, such as Bayside, Green Run, and Seatack, especially if you plan to still live there while your baby goes to elementary school. Your budget is super tight, though.

I have 2 little boys, ages 3.5 and 5. We've been here about 2.5 years. VB has lots of parks/playgrounds, rec centers that are very affordable with indoor pools/splash pads, two indoor trampoline parks, an indoor bounce house playground, the Field House (has an indoor playground for $3), Green Bean (indoor play place for little kids), Funville (pricey, IMO, but worth it when you want them REALLY worn out!), Ocean Breeze water park, the aquarium, and, of course, beaches. Not in VB, but nearby, there's also the Children's Museum in Portsmouth, the zoo in Norfolk, the museum in Newport News (the name of which escapes me at the moment), Fun Forest in Chesapeake (awesome big outdoor playground), and even Busch Gardens in Williamsburg. Lynnhaven and Pembroke Malls in VB and MacArthur Mall in Norfolk have really good play areas. I hear the libraries have great kids programs, but I'm not a SAHM, so I haven't been able to make it to those since they're often on weekdays during the day.
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Old 06-09-2017, 05:56 PM
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If you don't mind my asking what will he be doing at renaissance? With your budget you'd be better off moving into an apartment until you have a feel for the area. I'm not sure you can get a SFH in that price range.
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Old 06-11-2017, 11:55 AM
Location: Seattle, WA
57 posts, read 124,350 times
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Virginia Beach is a very family friendly area. There are tons of activities going on all the time. Here is a good resource for that: MyActiveChild.com | Activities, Events, & Family Fun in Hampton Roads, VA

I agree with the other posters - that budget won't get you a single family home in a great area unfortunately. This is the bind me and my husband are in now. We are currently renting a townhome near Hilltop/Great Neck until we can save up more money for a home. We've been seeing plenty in the 250k range in some decent and safe neighborhoods so we are planning on that.

Look at Kempsville, some parts of Chesapeake are safe and might fit your budget, and there are plenty of decent neigborhoods around Oceana. (Someone correct me if I'm wrong as I'm still new to the area myself). The safest areas seem to be Great Neck/Hilltop/North Beach/Pungo/Sandbridge...(again, other posters correct me if I'm wrong) This is just based on my experience trying to familiarize myself with the area.

If you want to live a lot further out from Virginia Beach, maybe you could luck out with a cheap home over the border in NC or elsewhere. But if your husband wants a decent commute time and you don't mind waiting a while, I'm sure you can find an affordable rental in a decent area. I would talk to a realtor and get their opinion. Best of luck!!
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Old 06-13-2017, 09:33 AM
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I agree with what the other folks have said. I checked our Multiple Listing System this morning and there is very limited inventory of single family homes given your criteria. There is a little more if we include townhomes. As for a fixer-upper, please keep in mind that if you are planning to finance a home, the home cannot be in such material condition as to not pass an appraisal that supports the loan. I usually recommend to clients that they either rent for a year before buying to get a better feel for the neighborhoods, you would want to buy in. But for sure, if possible, please try to come for a visit before you move.
Good luck with your move and if you have any other questions, please ask. We have some very helpful folks on this thread who will try to answer them.
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Old 07-05-2017, 06:37 AM
5,475 posts, read 7,459,857 times
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Again with the school districts. Have you checked out the report cards for the zones you listed?
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