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Old 01-30-2010, 03:39 PM
 
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Family with 4 children relocating for job in Pasadena. We can spend up to $1.5 mil but we will need good public schools for our children.

Everyone says La Canada or South Pas is the best place for a family but $1.5 mil doesn't buy much for a large family . I don't want to be house poor in a dump if there is another family friendly option nearby.

Any thoughts on Glendora?

Thanks!
Nat
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Old 01-30-2010, 09:48 PM
 
1,712 posts, read 5,339,416 times
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You should be able to afford quite decent housing in South Pasadena within your budget.

Also look at Arcadia. It's right next to Pasadena, has beautiful mountain views, great schools, and is cheaper than South Pas. I don't think you need to go all the way out to Glendora to achieve what you want.
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Old 01-30-2010, 11:07 PM
 
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Arcadia, Temple City, San Marino maybe.

3 times the number of listings in Arcadia/Temple City as there were in La Canada/South Pas in your price range and mostly quite a bit less than 1.5million.

Theres not a lot on the market right now and renting may be a better strategy for a while. I suspect there is a quite a bit larger inventory that simply isn't for sale right now but may be in a few years. Of course if you are carrying a huge mortgage, interest rates are a very strong factor.
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Old 01-30-2010, 11:11 PM
 
Location: West Coast
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Glendale or Burbank maybe?
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Old 01-31-2010, 06:18 AM
 
Location: So Ca
13,865 posts, read 13,539,572 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nat03 View Post
Any thoughts on Glendora?
Too far a commute (traffic, not mileage-wise) to drive to Pasadena each day, unless you leave at 5:30-6 am. Public schools are not bad, though.

Of the cities mentioned, San Marino ranks at the top of the list, public school wise, followed by La Canada, South Pas, then Arcadia. (Temple City, Burbank, etc, rank well below those.)
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Old 01-31-2010, 10:16 AM
 
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If they can't find what they're looking for in South Pasadena for 1.5 million then they're not going to find it in San Marino.

It shouldn't be a problem finding something spacious for 1.5 million in South Pasadena, either (and certainly not a "dump" for that price), for that matter.

I agree that Arcadia would be a good middle ground; still close, possible a bigger place (which I'm assuming is the sticking point?) for the money than South Pas or La Canada, and good schools.

It could be, though, that the OP needs to readjust expectations, or will have to take on a long commute; what are you looking for in a house? Many of the houses in South Pasadena, San Marino, etc., are older; many of them are very, very nice, but I know some people are relocating from areas of the country where they are used to 5,000k+ foot McMansions with three car garages on an acre of land. There are a number of 4 BR homes in South Pasadena listed at under 1.5 million right now, and even some in San Marino. Generally speaking, though, if you want more than four bedrooms and vast square footage then I think you're either looking at doing an expansion or going farther out. People generally live in smaller spaces (not that a 3,000 square foot house is small, but I can see how it could be considered so when side by side to what you could buy for that price in many parts of the country) in LA. Keep in mind that with the weather it's also possible to spend a lot of time outside, so the whole outdoors as second room thing really opens up extra space. Also the fact that no one seems to actually use their garage, and many of them are purely storage or are converted to office or play space.

If it was me I'd stick closer to work and minimize the commute, even if meant a slightly smaller house. Definitely give Arcadia a closer look, too.
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Old 01-31-2010, 11:18 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
69,259 posts, read 79,427,308 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nat03 View Post
Family with 4 children relocating for job in Pasadena. We can spend up to $1.5 mil but we will need good public schools for our children.

Everyone says La Canada or South Pas is the best place for a family but $1.5 mil doesn't buy much for a large family . I don't want to be house poor in a dump if there is another family friendly option nearby.

Any thoughts on Glendora?

Thanks!
Nat
all three of those areas are very family oriented and offer good schools. Of course La Canada and So Pasa are closer to Los Angeles so, yes, they are more expensive. We were married (100 years ago) in So Pasa, I have friend in La Canada and my husband was raised in Glendora, plus it was the last place we lived before leaving California. If you make sure you buy in the Glendora school district, which you would spending a mil plus you should be very happy. I might add one more suggestion, but it too will be pricier, have you considered Arcadia/

Nita
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Old 01-31-2010, 11:19 AM
hsw
 
2,144 posts, read 6,199,027 times
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May make more financial sense to rent a house in a setting of likely depreciating, certainly illiquid, upscale houses...and awfully cheap rents in many upscale areas

LCF has strong public schools; would argue academically far stronger than S Pas schools
Eastern suburbs of LA quickly become slummier, smoggier and more inconvenient to high-income jobs and amenities of life

SanMarino is heavily Chinese (unlike other upscale LA suburbs like LCF or Brentwood/Palisades), so some view it as an upscale ethnic ghetto that doesn't reflect socio-economics of top colleges or major industries that kids will face later in life
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Old 01-31-2010, 12:13 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
69,259 posts, read 79,427,308 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hsw View Post
May make more financial sense to rent a house in a setting of likely depreciating, certainly illiquid, upscale houses...and awfully cheap rents in many upscale areas

LCF has strong public schools; would argue academically far stronger than S Pas schools
Eastern suburbs of LA quickly become slummier, smoggier and more inconvenient to high-income jobs and amenities of life

SanMarino is heavily Chinese (unlike other upscale LA suburbs like LCF or Brentwood/Palisades), so some view it as an upscale ethnic ghetto that doesn't reflect socio-economics of top colleges or major industries that kids will face later in life
boy are you rattling on and on.. First of all: La Canada is very, very pricey. has it dawned on you many want a combination of family life, schools and a little more house? Why would you even bring up Brentwood/Palisades? They are the oppisite direction and why the comment about Chinese? Yes, San Marino is asain, as is So Pasadena and much of Arcadia. They all offer good schools which is what the Op asked about. I am not sure the OP was looking at the very best schools just a good school district which is understandable.

Anyway, OP, I would not rule Glendora out, as I said it is family oriented, but Arcadia is much closer and certainly someplace to, at least consider.

Nita
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Old 01-31-2010, 12:47 PM
 
Location: Seattle
1,361 posts, read 2,845,273 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hsw View Post
SanMarino is heavily Chinese (unlike other upscale LA suburbs like LCF or Brentwood/Palisades), so some view it as an upscale ethnic ghetto that doesn't reflect socio-economics of top colleges or major industries that kids will face later in life
I think this is an important consideration - San Marino and Arcadia schools are not particularly diverse - they are strong majority Asian, with a lot of kids of immigrant parents. I know some immigrant Asians who refuse to send kids to these school districts for that very reason; the whole reason behind educating kids in America is not so they go into a school district with an 80% Asian population. I don't think Arcadia is that high, but San Marino is at least 75% Asian in the school district, and Arcadia is becoming increasingly non-diverse every year as you see Asian families replacing white families from that community. Some families may not care about this; but IMO it's an important consideration.

LCF and South Pas are much more diverse and balanced and, as hsw said, probably much more reflective of the type of demographics kids will see in a top university or in the corporate world. While I would argue that South Pas is perhaps slightly weaker than LCF, San Marino or Arcadia, I would argue its more balanced demographic conditions outweigh the VERY slightly weaker school district. Plus, IMO, South Pas is the most livable community out of all of them and you're much closer to a lot of job centers and a lot of the cultural amenities of Los Angeles. But LCF is the best combination of balanced demographics and outstanding school performance.

Glendora is a nice community, just far away from everything, which may or may not be good depending what you are looking for. Also keep in mind that with a $1.5M budget, you will be one of the wealthiest people in the community, which may or may not bother you, but keep that in mind. In a place like LCF, or South Pas, you will probably economically "fit in" a lot better.

With your budget, you can afford to buy in any of these communities, but also keep in mind that most financially astute people will tell you that the housing market in LA is most skewed toward renting when you hit the 1M+ market. The loan market has really fallen out at the high end and you can get some incredibly NICE houses for a 4500-5000 a month rental that would probably be nicer than what you can buy for 1.5M, which will cost you 10000-12000 monthly. It might be worth your while to at least check out both markets.

Last edited by drshang; 01-31-2010 at 01:02 PM..
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